Event Response Plan Part 1 (Terrorist Event)
Event Response Plan Part 1 (Terrorist Event)
Terrorist event is one of the most debated in the world today. Many people are being affected due to its disastrous effects, to which not only business are affected, but also the lives of the people. This event could happen anywhere at any time. The director of local emergency management in Small County has the responsibility in any event that is related to terrorism or terrorist attack. Being a small county means that there is a limited resources due to its small tax base. However, there are basic steps that can be taken in case that such terror attacks happen in this county.
Help from the State Government after the Initial Response
The director of this small county has major roles to play in an event such as the terrorism. There are various initial responses that must be taken into action so that the initial effects of the event will be addressed rapidly. One of the initial responses is to address the wounded people in the area where the attack happened. The director must activate the emergency response team of the county in order to enable all the emergency resources needed to assist the victims. The emergency response team must be capable of handling such incident in order to identify the next steps possible that need to be taken.
The director of emergency response department must call the attention of the state government right after the activation of local emergency response units. A bigger investigation and response actions must be taken into consideration by the state government. That is because the state government has the major responsibility when it comes to planning as well as managing the negative effects of terrorism (FEMA, 2002). The state government, though the help of the local response units, will use the available resources especially during the critical hours prior to the arrival of the Federal assistance. This will be similar to hierarchy of actions required to address such event in a small county. However, before the director of local emergency management calls the attention of the state government for assistance, the county must first use the available resources that are available.
It is essential that the local government must be ready with any events such as terrorism, to which includes its preparedness to provide the necessary actions in the fastest way possible. The local director for emergency management must first call the attention of the Mayor in order to provide all the available resources of the county. After all the initial responses from the local government, then it is time to ask for the state government’s assistance for further provision of available emergency resources.
Local and State agencies’ Roles Associated with Terrorism
The September 11 attack brought the reality that both the local and state governments have vitals roles to play when it comes to such similar events. It is therefore important to identify the roles of the agencies in order to provide a smooth plan and management once terrorism arises. Relatively, it is possible that terrorism may develop into a worse attack such as using a weapon of mass destruction or WMD (rand.org). That is why, the Congress created the Advisory panel to evaluate the Federal government’s preparedness through its programs both for local and state emergency responses. Such program is designed to assess the preparedness of the agencies both for local and state level in terms of their effectiveness.
Prior to the identification of both the local and state agencies’ role during the terrorism, it is essential to primarily identify the state and local government’s roles during this event. The local government should be the first responder during an emergency as they are the ones that are situated in the area where the event happened. They are also responsible for the incident command, providing earnings to the people, leading the evacuation procedures, and assessing the situation. In addition, the local government is responsible for coordinating with the local agencies such as the emergency response units and police forces, the identification of requirements that exceed the local capabilities, requesting mutual aid from neighboring cities, and requesting for assistance from the state government (FEMA, 2002).
On the other hand, the state government is responsible for providing assistance to supplement the efforts of the local government, coordinating with state agencies, requesting for mutual aid from neighboring states, and requesting assistance from the federal government. The state governor has also the authority to declare a State Emergency, Mobilize the National Guards, and even redirect the state resources.
The identification of both the local and state responsibilities is essential for the identification of the agencies’ responsibilities in case terrorism strikes, in this case, a small county that has limited resources due to its small tax base. Various local agencies will have important roles to play during the time of emergency. According to the Homeland Security (2015), the following departments/agencies and personnel must be considered:
Chief Elected Official – He or she is responsible for the overall management of the situation within the affected areas and must be able to manage the resources on hand to provide further assistance to both the victims and emergency responders.
Emergency Management Coordinator – This person acts as the head of the agency that primarily responds to any emergency situation such as terrorism. He is also responsible for overseeing the resources needed and provides prompt report to the Chief Elected Official in case supplemental assistance is needed from other county or city.
Fire Department – This has one of the most important roles. After the terrorist event, it is more likely that fire or explosion has occurred, which therefore their presence is highly needed. Thus, even during the terrorist event, the fire department must already be present near the location so that first aid initial response to potential fire is already activated.
American Red Cross – First Aid response has always been important in any emergency event. In this case, the American Red Cross must stand by any circumstances that will need their medical assistance. Emergency medical assistance must be provided to victims and emergency responders to ensure that casualty rate will not increase.
On a broader aspect, the state agencies that are responsible for providing emergency assistance during and even after the terrorist attack are the counterparts of the local agencies mentioned. For example, the state’s fire department should also respond especially right after the assistance was asked by the local fire department. Additionally, the State police department must also be present especially during the time of event and while the investigation is conducted.
Coordination Strategies with Other Agencies and Resources
Proper coordination with agencies as well the utilization of the available resources is an essential response during the terrorist attack. As a local emergency management director, the strategies should be used must address the emergency needs and must be done in the fastest possible manner. During this event the local emergency management director must think beyond what is currently happening. Therefore, the director must expect the unexpected things that might happen just like the September 11 event. When it comes to strategic coordination, there should be a regional approach when it comes to planning process (FEMA, 2002). The regional approach means that the plan must not only be confined within the affected areas, but also consider any possible events that could happen in the neighboring counties and cities. Therefore, it is important that the local government should also coordinate with other local governments. Another strategy is the coordination of the local tactics with adjacent jurisdictions, with Federal plans, and with State plans (FEMA, 2002). This will enable both the local, State, and Federal governments to have an integrated plans and responses. With the presence of ideas from these three levels of government, resources and other necessary actions can be provided immediately.
Traditional inclusions of organizations and agencies are normally part of the initial response during this kind of incident. However, the third coordination strategy that was proposed by FEMA (2002) states that non-traditional organizations and partners must also be included in the initial responses. This includes the assistance from occupational health organizations, safety organizations, the US postal service and many others (FEMA, 2002). In an unexpected event such as terrorism different needs may arise that many people did not expect to happen. That is why, the inclusion of these organizations is equally important, which is similar with other emergency responders.
Appropriate Critical Response According to NIMS
NIMS or National Incident Management System is a national approach to any incident, which is applicable to different jurisdictional levels such as the local and state levels (FEMA 2008). NIMS intends to be applicable through a variety of incidents as well as hazard events, regardless of complexity and size. According to NIMS compliance, the critical incident response at the local and state levels must include several factors such as preparedness, resource management, information and communication management, command and management, and ongoing management and maintenance (U.S. Department of Homeland Security FEMA, 2008). The effective management of incident must begin with preparedness activities, which must also be on steady-state foundation, way ahead of any potential incident. It involves creation of plans, training, and exercises; qualification of personnel, publication management, equipment acquisition, and Emergency Management Assistance (U.S. Department of Homeland Security FEMA, 2008). Being prepared in an incident such as terrorism is more than just being aware of potential deadly effects of such incident, but also being capable of handling any complex situations. On the other hand, resource management defines the standardized mechanisms as well as establishing requirements for various response actions.
Furthermore, information and communication management will ensure that the organizations are interoperable communications procedures and effective systems exist on both local and state jurisdictions and agencies. Also, the command management factor, according to NIMS compliance is that the ICS or Incident Command System is standardized, on-scene, and all-hazard management system (U.S. Department of Homeland Security FEMA, 2008). In that case, the incident management system will be flexible enough to handle any time of emergency event such as terrorism. Therefore, for a county that has a small tax base, can be leveraged using supplemental assistance and appropriate incident responses.
Interagency Communication with Local, State and Federal Agencies
Federal Emergency Management Agency. (2002). Interim Planning Guide for State and Local Governments. Author.
Homeland Security. (n.d.). Introduction to Homeland Security and Emergency Management for Local Officials. Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management.
Johnson, J. A., & Cwiek, M. A. (2005). Community preparedness and response to terrorism. J. A. Johnson, G. R. Ledlow, & M. A. Cwiek (Eds.). Westport, CT: Praeger.
Rand Corporation. (n.d.). When It Comes to Terrorism, How Prepared Are Local and State Agencies? | RAND. Retrieved from http://www.rand.org/pubs/research_briefs/RB9209/index1.html
U.S. Department of Homeland Security FEMA. (2008). NAtional Incident Management System (NIMS) (FEMA B-775).