DES MOINES, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- There were a lot of natural disasters in 2017, which devastated infrastructure systems around the U.S.
In the south, Hurricane Harvey dropped 50 inches of rain, washing out train tracks and compromising rural bridges. Hurricane Irma, on the east coast, did much the same.
In the aftermath of both, billions of dollars of damages accrued and there were disruptions and delays for imports and exports. But for the most part, much of the infrastructure system has recovered.
Mike Steenhoek, executive director of the Soy Transportation Coalition, says they learned responding to a hurricane is a lot easier with prevention methods like response plans and redundancy.
Steenhoek says, "There is a lot of resilience to our infrastructure system. Certainly a lot of opportunity for improvement. There's certainly some lessons that we have learned. Things that have been reiterated to us through that experience. But we have had a good amount of recovery and we do continue to see both imports and exports proceeding from those affected areas."
Steenhoek says Congress is stepping up to provide more relief to the areas affected by Hurricane Irma and Harvey.