The field of emergency management has changed a lot in recent years. Many current emergency managers have hands-on experience but often do not have an academic background in the field, while new or aspiring emergency managers often have an emergency and disaster management education, but not much experience. AMU student George Navarini, who recently was elected to a student leadership position within the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM) has a plan to bring those two groups together so they can learn from one another.
On June 29, 2012, a derecho brought devastation to many Mid-Atlantic states including Ohio, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Maryland, Virginia, Delaware, New Jersey, and West Virginia and the District of Columbia. This incident highlighted the need for community preparedness, especially in rural areas. Dr. Shana Nicholson shares the lessons learned by small communities in West Virginia and how public safety agencies and citizens are working hard together so they're better prepared for the next disaster.
On August 29, Mississippi will commemorate the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, the single greatest natural disaster ever experienced by the state. APU professor Juanita Graham writes about her experience seeing the devastation soon after Hurricane Katrina hit and again in a recent visit 10 years later. Graham writes about the challenges Mississippi continues to face when it comes to public health and how health professionals can prepare for the next disaster.
On July 12, a civilian-operated drone forced firefighters battling a 35-acre wildfire in Southern California to ground supporting air tankers. This was the fourth such incident in a month where a drone disrupted firefighting efforts in California. These civilian-operated drones pose significant dangers for firefighting operations.
However, the use of drones by the fire service holds many potential benefits. “Drones would be a generous increase in our capabilities regarding communication, safety, and command and control,” said Captain Peter Jensen, a 26-year wildland firefighter with the Ventura County Fire Department in California. Learn more about how unmanned aerial systems (UAS) could assist firefighters fight wildfires.
What does it mean to be prepared for a disaster? With hurricane season upon us—coupled with all the other potential emergencies that exist in our communities—it is only fitting to discuss strategies for preparedness. While no emergency can be predicted, there are some general guidelines and supplies that individuals can have in order to be prepared when disaster strikes. AMU professor Giles Hoback provides tips on preparing for a disaster.
In the wake of the 2008 great recession, budgets and financial concerns have been at the forefront of policy making throughout the United States. Perhaps one of the most frustrating elements about working in emergency management and emergency medical services (EMS) are the constant threat of budget cuts. Citizens are also impacted by such budget cuts and many communities are facing cuts to their 9-1-1 emergency system. Read more from AMU professor Allison Knox about budget cuts and the impacts it has on public safety and emergency response.
By Anthony Mangeri
Emergency managers must be able to effectively inform the public during times of crisis. Learn how emergency managers develop relationships and build trust and credibility with media outlets before an incident or disaster.