Real-Life Disasters Teach us to Always Be Prepared

The effects of Hurricane Maria are still front and center… (…)
If you look closely enough, you can find examples of emergency preparedness everywhere. It may not directly impact your geographic area, but the situations all help to improve emergency response in the future, which make them worth following and studying.
 
There are several situations that we have been tracking over the past month. We study the response, await the after-action reviews and think about how to apply the relevant pieces to our next round of edits on our emergency plan. Here’s what we’re watching.
 

We’re still watching Puerto Rico.

The effects of Hurricane Maria are still front and center in Puerto Rico. While the press may have died down a bit, the response is still ongoing, and questions are still unanswered. We’re not interested in playing the blame game, we’re interested in how to prevent this from happening again. Over two months after this hurricane made landfall, Puerto Ricans are still waiting for their basic needs to be met. From food to quality drinking water and for aid workers that speak Spanish to housing without black mold.
 
The response hasn’t stopped, though we are now seeing private organizations step up while the government appears to be floundering about. Mass General just sent a team of 26 to help with the medical needs of the people on the island. The USS Comfort returned back to the US prior to Thanksgiving, after rendering medical care to over 1,800 patients.
 

Why you need to have plans for water supply.

A pile of radioactive waste sits buried beneath a cement dome on an atoll in the Marshall Islands. Sure, it sounded like a good idea in the 1970s, but with sea levels rising there is a very real danger of the radioactive waste seeping out into the ocean water. Which, as we know, can cause some widespread effects. Is this a time to start talking about having an emergency supply of potable water for everyone, including long-term care facilities and nursing homes?
 

Are your evacuation plans ready?

In this scenario of “should we stay or should we go” in Bali, there really is no option. You can’t outrun a volcanic eruption, whether it is magmatic or steam-based. With flights into and out of Bali canceled, there is a very real sense of panic growing. It’s not easy to evacuate parts of an island, and it certainly isn’t something you can do last minute. We await word from the island’s emergency management agency as to what and how evacuation plans entail.
 
 
The bottom line is this, no one is exempt from a natural disaster. Therefore, everyone must plan. Yes, the focus has been on health care facilities and the hype has been surrounding the mid-November deadline, but that doesn’t mean everyone can relax now. Now is the time to make plans and practice them. Now is the time to plan for next year’s hurricane season. Now is the time to contact us about your plans. We’re standing by.
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Topics: AARs, Hurricane

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