December 29, 2014: Florida Disaster Response
Florida is developing a process to credential members of a state disaster response team. The intent is to ensure other states are willing to accept and provide assistance during emergencies. When a hurricane or other disaster ravages part of Florida, it often relies on help from other states to recover quickly. When other states face emergencies, Florida returns the favor. The groups that often make the trip are known as “All Hazards Incident Management” teams.
Born out of breakdowns after Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans, the idea was to have about 20 people who quickly could respond to emergency management issues ranging from big storms to terrorist attacks. “In the past, these teams have been fire-rescue-heavy, and that does not always work,” said Ashley Davis, deputy operations chief of the Florida Division of Emergency Management.
The division hopes a process to credential members of those teams will ensure state-level teams easily can identify qualified members.