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Incident Command System: Principles and Features. Part 1

Incident Command System: Principles and Features. Part 1

1. Who will be responsible for the direction and control of the disaster operations?

In Dallas, Texas, disaster direction and control operations include numerous activities aimed at the reduction of immediate hazards, restoration of normal operations within the community, and the establishment of the control situations. One individual should be chosen and trained in order to act as an Emergency head while at least one back-up co-coordinator is also required. However, in case of an emergency, the personnel on site is crucial for ensuring that efficient and prompt action is taken in order to minimize the losses (Hazard vulnerability analysis and risk assessment 2012). The organizational structure of the operation is usually arranged according to the type of incident or jurisdictions involved. Additionally, certain objectives and strategies are selected to resolve the situation. The basic responsibility for the direction and control of the operations is usually placed on the government. In this case, the government will appoint a board of commissioners who will be overseen by a manager or chairman (Lester et al, 2007). The board will then be subdivided into sections that will have the responsibility of tackling individual disasters. The sections will be under regional coordination.

2. What are the criteria you would establish for determining the lead position during an emergency?

The lead position during an emergency is always crucial to the success of the entire operation. Therefore, the criteria that take into consideration all the factors surrounding the emergency have to be formulated. At first, the lead position should be chosen through a thorough assessment of individual’s skills and competence in disaster management and other emergency operations. The program experts from the existing emergency workforce should undertake an evaluation process for the lead position. It should comply with the law or the rules that determine dsaster management in the region. It is crucial so as to ensure that all people under his or her supervision receive proper guidance during the operation (National Response Framework (NRF).

The other step should ensure that the person on the lead position has had a reputable work performance in past disaster response and recovery activities. The nature of a disaster that has taken place should be also identified. This step will be crucial as it will provide sufficient knowledge of what the disaster entails and the type of response that should be applied.

3. How much authority would this person have during an emergency?

As a rule, successful and quick recovery will depend on every recovery stakeholder; moreover, it is crucial to have a very clear understanding of the responsibilities and roles. According to the principles of the Disaster Recovery Framework, clearly defined responsibilities and roles are a strong foundation for the efforts unity among all the recovery partners aimed at identifying the opportunities, optimizing resources, and fostering partnerships (Hazard vulnerability analysis and risk assessment 2012). In this case, the person who has been chosen for the lead position will hold unquestionable authority over all other participants in the operation. For instance, he or she will have the authority to recommend:

  • Recovery Manager and Recovery Coordinator positions,
  • A new designated Federal Disaster Recovery Coordinator (FDRC) opportunities, and
  • National-level disaster recovery coordination.

4. What methods of communication would you recommend for maintaining control during an emergency?

During an emergency, the importance of the region’s communication systems becomes very clear. The communications’ systems include the wireless and wired telephones radio, land mobile radio, broadcast and cable television, as well as satellite systems (Hazard vulnerability analysis and risk assessment 2012). In Dallas, Texas, the following should be considered:

  • 911 call delivery and processing through the Public Safety Answering Points (PSAP) as well as call dispatch;
  • The Emergency Alert System; and
  • Radio or broadcast or cable TV station news and updates.

All of the above-mentioned components must effectively operate so as to achieve a successful response to an emergency.

5. How many persons or what type of personnel would you allow to make independent decisions in the field?

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Decision making is very crucial in case of emergency. Having that idea in mind, there should be a consideration when determining the type of personnel that should make independent decisions in the field. In the occurrence of an emergency, there is a lead person who makes all the critical decisions, in consultation with other personnel in the field. However, there are cases whereby independent decisions should be taken, though not by everybody. Medical personnel should be the first batch to be allowed to do it (Lester et al, 2007) as their aim is to save lives. The other group comprises firefighters, who are on the lookout in case of any fire. Finally, the police should have the independence to make decisions in any way that they find suitable.

6. In your opinion, is it necessary or prudent to allow for input into the disaster management process during an emergency?

It is a necessary step in the entire disaster management process, as it will manage to keep the operation on track. The proper input, if applied in the right proportion, would enable fast and timely recovery and evacuation, something that might not have happened if the input were missing. All these issues brought together will ensure that Dallas, Texas always stays safe.

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