Three Storms Demonstrate Five Forms of Flooding | Domestic Preparedness Photo: Bob Gremillion, January 2017

Three Storms Demonstrate Five Forms of Flooding

by John Englander -

Flooding results from three primary forces: rainfall, coastal storm surge, and rising sea level, made even worse with by runoff and extreme tides. Recently, hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria showcased the new environmental conditions the world faces as well as the devastating damage that can occur when any combination of these flood types converges on a built community constructed without adequately addressing the increasing threats.


Lone Wolves – Finding the Red Flags

by Richard Schoeberl & Daniel Sherr -

The Department of Homeland Security has acknowledged that the threat of “lone wolf” attacks continues to represent the greatest threat to national security. This acknowledgement is supported by the fact that the United States is experiencing an unprecedented number of active shooter events – whether ideologically or non-ideologically inspired. Two weeks following the worst mass shooting in U.S. history, details are no closer to being solidified and law enforcement continues to search for a motive.


Unmanned Aerial Systems & Emergency Management

by Kay C. Goss -

Long before the invention of drones, emergency managers determined the overall scope of a crisis using information from emergency personnel on the ground, and from the chain of command created through the Incident Command System. Today, drones have many capabilities that could enhance response activities and change the way disasters are managed. Hurricane Harvey demonstrated how this technology is rapidly changing.


National Safe Schools Week: Securing Learning Environments

by Mark Williams -

Studies show that children’s learning improves when they feel both physically and emotionally safe. As “National Safe Schools Week” (16-20 October 2017) approaches, it is an appropriate time to discuss how to create these environments through safe schools programs in local communities across the United States.


Exercise Because of Want, Not Because of Need

by Nitin Natarajan -

For decades, governments have conducted emergency preparedness exercises as a method to evaluate the ability to prepare for, respond to, and recover from natural and manmade disasters. There is no doubt the tens of thousands of exercises conducted across the nation have improved the nation’s preparedness but, in order to tackle new and emerging threats, more must be done.


National Preparedness Month: A Year-Round Endeavor

by Catherine L. Feinman -

Throughout National Preparedness Month many communities’ preparedness plans have been tested. Hurricanes, earthquakes, wildfires, floods, and drought are just some of the threats faced this month. Although preparedness is highlighted during the month of September, recent events reinforce the need for preparedness to be a year-round effort – especially during months when daily operations are not being overshadowed by catastrophe, and agencies and organizations are not being tested in full public view.


Active Shooter Incidents: The Rescue Task Force Concept

by Robert Mueck -

The concept of the Rescue Task Force (RTF) came from the Arlington County (Virginia) Fire Department. Looking at active shooter events around the country, these fire department leaders created a model that enables emergency medical services (EMS) to provide emergency medical intervention faster and within the Incident Command System (ICS) construct.


Enhancing Infrastructure Protection Through Special Events

by Erin Mohres -

In an atmosphere of limited resources, critical infrastructure (CI) protection can be difficult to prioritize with crime-fighting and disaster response. Understanding real-world lessons learned from local agencies is one way to make progress. Leveraging the urgency demanded by special events can be a particularly productive path forward. This article offers suggestions from practitioners to develop CI protection programs through special events management, at varying levels of capability and scale.


So Much More Than Having a Kit & Making a Plan

by Catherine L. Feinman -

For years, emergency preparedness professionals have been preaching the message, “Have a Kit, Make a Plan.” As a result, everyone is now ready for the next disaster … of course not. In its latest survey, DomPrep explored levels of preparedness, reasons why people do not plan, as well as possible solutions to reach those who have not yet bought in to the traditional messaging efforts.


S&T Helps Train Public Safety Practitioners in Flood Preparation

The third annual National Geospatial Preparedness Summit provided capacity-building training for the public safety community. The Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology (S&T) Directorate First Responders Group provided expertise to support the development of this year’s training program, sessions, workshops, and the functional preparedness exercise based on a real-world flood scenario.

Experimental Ebola Vaccines Elicit Year-Long Immune Response

Results from a large randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial in Liberia show that two candidate Ebola vaccines pose no major safety concerns. These vaccines can elicit immune responses by one month after initial vaccination and last for at least one year. The findings are based on a study of 1,500 adults that began during the West Africa Ebola outbreak.

HHS Pursues Reusable Respirator to Better Protect Medical Providers During Pandemics

An adequate supply of respirators for first responders and healthcare professionals is critical to protecting the health of workers responding to pandemics and other public health emergencies. To meet this need, the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority and Applied Research Associates Inc. will partner to advance the development of respirators that can be reused up to 100 times.

HHS Pursues Therapeutic for Radiation Injury Affecting Blood Platelets

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) announced a partnership with Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation, to determine whether a product for treating patients suffering from thrombocytopenia could be used to better protect people in the event of a nuclear incident.

Public Health Innovation Impacts Disaster Relief Efforts

Following Hurricane Harvey, colleagues from the United States and Canada deployed to Rockport, Texas, through an unusual disaster relief organization – Field Innovation Team (FIT), a nonprofit organization that creates cutting-edge disaster solutions. They developed a Public Health Digital Brochure (telephone/Short Message Service hotline) and a donation management system that can be adapted to any community after a disaster.