Once again, a natural disaster is severely impacting a region of our nation. Much of the Front Range of Colorado has been experiencing devastation due to historic rainfall amounts and subsequent flooding. Many residences, businesses, and organizations have been destroyed or damaged. So far, we have not been made aware of any damage to the records and information of any Federal agencies. This is very good news.
However, in the days ahead, as field staff return to their work places, we think it is possible that they will discover water damaged records or perhaps even the loss of some documents and information. We wish to particularly remind Agency Records Officers of the assistance that NARA can provide as well as other useful guidance in order for them to pass along this information to field personnel.
Depending on the damage caused by the flooding, it may be necessary for your agency to implement a records recovery operation. Water damage will likely be the major records recovery issue. For advice and assistance on records recovery operations please refer to the preservation section of our website. Here, you will find a template (.pdf) for contracting for records recovery services. You will also find a list of records recovery vendors. This list of vendors is provided by NARA for informational purposes. Inclusion on the list should not be viewed as an endorsement of the quality of the vendor’s services.
NARA staff members are available to provide additional information and guidance.
For advice on records recovery issues, please contact Doris Hamburg, NARA’s Director of the Preservation Programs Division on 301-837-1785 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or Mary Lynn Ritzenthaler, Chief of the Conservation Branch on 301-837-2906 or via email at email@example.com.
For advice and assistance on other records management issues arising from the storm, including to report on the emergency destruction of records under 36 CFR 1229.10 or the loss of records under 36 CFR 1230.14, please contact the appraisal archivist assigned to your agency. Please see this list of agency staff assignments and points of contact.