TABLE OF CONTENTSIntroduction1.0 Importance of an Effective Command System 2.0 Levels of Command3.0 Initial Risk Assessment and Action Plan 3.1 Initial Risk Assessment3.2 Action Plan4.0 Roles and Responsibilities of the Multi-Agencies4.1 Local Police Authorities4.2 Environmental Agency4.3 Local Authorities5.0 Effectiveness of a Media Liaison6.0 Communication and Management of the Incident7.0 ConclusionReferencesIntroduction This report seeks to analyse the events that unfolded at the Buncefield Oil Storage and transfer depot, Hemel Hempstead causing considerable damage to the proximal properties and the substantial deaths. Additionally, the report aims at discussing the various multi-agency impacts and roles as it is prepared for presentation to a multi-agency debrief meeting.
Aspects covered in this report include the importance of an effective incident command system to contain disasters of such magnitude, establishment of various levels of command, post-disaster risk assessment activities to facilitate the development of action plans and the need for a liaison to maintain communication through the media. 1.0 Importance of an Effective Command System An incident command system (ICS) seeks to oversee effective response to a disaster that require immediate emergency and rescue services to ensure the protection of lives and property.
The importance of having an effective command system includes: -Ensuring well coordinated responses among the various agencies to minimise deviations in the rescue exercise (The National Response Team, p4). The ICS deploys a high number of emergency personnel from various rescue agencies over a wide area and hence the need to coordinate the operations of the various agency personnel. This arises from the need of the rescue operations to achieve common rescue objectives through the multiple agencies. The ICS therefore seeks to ensure systematic rescue efforts to enhance the achievement of the rescue objectives.
Harmonising the operations of the multiple response teams to enhance the achievement of the rescue objectives. Disaster response personnel from the several emergency agencies are trained differently on responding to emergencies. An agency’s approach to a disaster may negatively impact on another agency’s rescue approaches. To avoid this conflict in the rescue operations, the ICS seeks to establish a common approach that ensures the achievement of the various agency operations (The National Response Team, p4). The field teams need to receive orders from their seniors that are adequately represented in the executive level of the ICS.
To have representatives from the multiple agencies are involved in overseeing the coordination of the rescue operations. Notably, several emergency agencies are set up to ensure adherence to pre-determined standards within their jurisdiction. These agencies are steered by experts with sufficient knowledge in their fields hence enabling them to formulate objective policies. Due to the several objectives and interests of these agencies, the ICS provides a common forum that develops an action plan to the disaster while considering the various objectives and interests of the agencies.
As a result, inter-agency co-operations are enhanced and improve coordinated responses to an emergency (The National Response Team, p5). Provide the media with a source of information to update the members of the public on the effects of the disaster and the achievement of the rescue operations (The National Response Team, p4). Disasters of large magnitudes attract the attention of the public and hence there is need to keep them informed on the developments of the disaster.
This is because individuals working within the site of the disaster are mostly locals and their families need to be informed on their health conditions. Additionally, such disasters attract the attention of the media and hence the need to provide them with adequate information to monitor the progress of the emergency services. The media assesses whether the disaster preparedness manuals were followed and highlight on the weak areas of the disaster preparedness exercise. To ensure the availability and distribution of emergency funds to the relevant rescue agencies to guarantee sustainable rescue operations.
Multiple agencies involved in the rescue exercise ought to provide sufficient funds to ensure the acquisition of resources to facilitate the rescue efforts.