IAEM Dispatch
Sep. 10, 2015

Register to attend the IAEM Think Tank, 'Tech for Good,' set for Sept. 17, 2015
The next IAEM Think Tank, on the topic of "Tech for Good," is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015, 1:00-2:30 p.m. EDT. Register online to secure your seat at this webinar event. During a disaster, putting communication in the hands of those who need it can be just as important as food and water. The "Tech for Good" Think Tank will bring awareness to what companies like Airbnb, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google are doing to engage emergency managers and the public before, during, and after a disaster. Our panel will include representatives from these companies, as well as emergency managers leading the integration of technology into disaster preparedness and response.More

Get ready for fall: Sweatshirts and hoodies available in IAEM Online Store
Cold weather is on the way. The IAEM Store has gear to keep you warm, including sweatshirts and hoodies in both zip-up and pullover styles. Check out the new store categories, ladies' active wear and men's active wear. In ladies, we've added an all-season jacket perfect for rainy days this fall. If you're in the southern hemisphere and getting ready for spring, our short-sleeve polo shirts are available for you. All items may be ordered with the IAEM, AEM or CEM® logos. Visit the IAEM Store to see more at www.iaemstore.com.More

Pakistan hosts conference on disaster management CBMs
The International News
Pakistan, as a co-lead with Kazakhstan, hosted the 4th Regional Technical Group Meeting on Disaster Management Confidence Building Measures (DM-CBMs) under Heart of Asia (HOA), Istanbul, process Sept. 8. The meeting was organized by NDMA in collaboration with UNDP, Pakistan.n Adviser to the Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz was the chief guest at the opening session.More

New disaster management head appointed
The Jakarta Post
President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has appointed Willem Rampangilei as the head of the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB), replacing Syamsul Maarif, an official said Sept. 7. "The appointment is a part of the normal flow of things because Syamsul has been serving as BNPB head for long enough," State Secretary Pratikno said as quoted by kompas.com. More

WHO seeks investment in emergency preparedness measures
The World Health Organisation (WHO) asked South East Asian nations to invest in emergency preparedness measures to effectively respond to natural disasters, infectious diseases and radiological disasters in the future. WHO also urged the countries to scale up their emergency management capabilities, expedite efforts to prepare for epidemics, and make health facilities safe and functional during disasters.More

Report: Spend more on tsunami warnings
Radio New Zealand
New research into the country's tsunami risk says more investment in warning systems and evacuation plans is needed to save lives in the event of a major inundation. The Earthquake Commission asked the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research to analyze the likelihood of a tsunami and the country's capability to manage it. Using percentiles, it estimated that a one-in-500 year tsunami could kill 17,000 people, injure a further 15,000 and cause $28 billion in damage. More

How FEMA director Craig Fugate wants to reshape disaster management
Government Executive
If you've never heard of Craig Fugate, that's probably best for all involved. Most people only know the names of directors of the Federal Emergency Management Agency when something goes badly wrong — just ask Michael "Heck of a Job" Brown, who led the organization during Hurricane Katrina. "My joke has been my entire career, I'm that individual when things go south. You gotta fire somebody, so I'm the guy you’re gonna fire," Fugate says.More

HHS seeks public comments on its Summary of Proposed Updates to the 2015-2016 National Health Security Preparedness Index
The Department of Health & Human Services has released the Summary of Proposed Updates to the 2015-16 National Health Security Preparedness Index, with the public comment period open until Sept. 30, 2015. The updates are a distillation of ideas and insights from many stakeholders in preparedness science and practice regarding ways of improving the Index as a measurement tool and a resource for decision support. These recommendations are designed to give users greater confidence about what the Index numbers tell us and about how they can be used. More

Prospect of another shutdown looms as Congress girds for fights over spending
The New York Times
When Congress returns for business, lawmakers have scheduled a mere 12 legislative days to find a bipartisan compromise to keep the government open, vote on one of the most contentious foreign policy matters in a generation, reconcile the future of funding for Planned Parenthood and roll out the red carpet — and a few thousand folding chairs — to greet Pope Francis. What could go wrong?More

FEMA administrator appoints National Advisory Council members
On Sept. 4, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Craig Fugate appointed five new members and reappointed five current members to the FEMA National Advisory Council (NAC). The NAC is an advisory committee established by federal law to ensure effective and ongoing coordination of federal emergency management activities. Member represent the whole community and include representatives from a wide array of backgrounds and communities involved or affected by the emergency management profession. The NAC provides recommendations to the FEMA Administrator on a variety of issues within emergency management. FEMA received more than 140 applications for the open positions. The five new NAC members include: Catherine B. Nelson, senior security researcher, Intel Corporation (Cyber Security); Peter W. Barca, assembly minority leader, 64th Assembly District, Wisconsin State Assembly (Elected State Government Officials); Michael Sprayberry, director, North Carolina Emergency Management, North Carolina Department of Public Safety (Emergency Response Providers); IAEM Student Member William "Brett" Bailey, investigations commander, Tulsa Police Department (Communications); and Darryl Wong, Hawaii state adjutant general, Hawaii Department of Defense (Administrator's Selection). The five reappointed members include: Sarita Chung, director, Disaster Preparedness Division of Emergency Management, Boston’s Children’s Hospital (In-Patient Medical Providers); Jerry Demings, Orange County sheriff, Orange County Sheriff’s Office (Elected Local Government Officials); Anne Kronenberg, executive director, San Francisco Department of Emergency Management (Emergency Response Providers); Jim Featherstone, general manager, Emergency Management Department, City of Los Angeles (Emergency Management); and IAEM Member Guy Swan, vice president, Association of the United States Army (Administrator Selection). Administrator Fugate also re-appointed Jim Featherstone to continue his service as the FEMA National Advisory Council chair. Learn more about the FEMA National Advisory Council.More

Obama's Labor Day executive order: Paid sick leave for government contractors
Bloomberg Politics
President Barack Obama signed his latest executive order on Labor Day, which extends the number of paid sick leave days mandated for federal contractors. "Right now you have parents who have to choose between losing income or staying home with a sick child," Obama said in a speech at the annual Greater Boston Labor Council breakfast, an event sponsored by the AFL-CIO.More

FEMA honors achievements in community preparedness
FEMA announced the winners of the 2015 FEMA Individual and Community Preparedness Awards, recognizing the outstanding efforts of individuals, programs, and organizations throughout the country working to prepare their communities for emergencies. The winners developed innovative practices and campaigns in 2014 that have made outstanding contributions toward making communities safer, better prepared, and more resilient. The 11 FEMA Individual and Community Preparedness Award recipients were recognized on Sept. 8, 2015, in Washington, D.C. During the recognition ceremony, where recipients shared their experiences, success stories, and lessons learned with fellow emergency management leaders. For the full list of winners, see the press release.More

FEMA seeks applications for superintendent of National Fire Academy
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is seeking applications for the position of superintendent at the National Fire Academy, Emmitsburg, Maryland. The superintendent is responsible for advancing the professional development of fire service personnel and of other persons engaged in fire prevention and control activities. This is accomplished through curriculum development and course evaluation; resident course delivery in the areas of all-hazard emergency incident management; emergency organization leadership, management and executive development; related instructor qualifications development; and an outreach delivery program which includes off-site course delivery and advanced educational programs at academic institutions. Complete details about the position and application instructions are posted here.More

FEMA announces statewide test of the Emergency Alert System in six New England states
As part of FEMA's mission to strengthen preparedness and resiliency, FEMA is working together with state, local, and tribal emergency managers and state broadcasters, to conduct a statewide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) in six New England states. The test, expected to last approximately one minute, is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015, at 2:20 p.m. EDT. The test in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island will verify that participating radio, TV, and cable systems are able to receive a National Periodic Test (NPT) code message from the FEMA Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) and broadcast the test message. The test message will be the same as previous EAS test messages, with the word "national" added to the message: "This is a national test of the Emergency Alert System. This is only a test..." The test is designed to occur during the state's regular monthly EAS test conducted by state officials and broadcasters in the six New England states. It is designed to have limited impact on the public, with only minor disruptions in radio and TV shows. The test requires that radio and television stations make a minor configuration change to their station EAS equipment to receive and process the NPT code message. Participation in the Sept. 16 test is completely voluntary for radio and TV stations and cable operators. There is no Federal Communications Commission liability for stations that choose not to participate. The test is a cooperative effort to ensure that communication channels are available, working and ready to deliver alerts and warnings to the public when an emergency occurs in the six states. For more information on IPAWS, visit www.fema.gov/ipaws or www.ready.gov/alerts.More

Official: Budget cuts won't affect US disaster response aid
The Associated Press via ABC News
U.S. military budget cuts are unlikely to affect America's ability to respond to major natural disasters and humanitarian crises in Asia, where it has led multinational drills to prepare for emergencies, a U.S. Navy official said Tuesday. U.S. allies in Asia including the Philippines have turned to Washington for help in dealing with a range of problems, including territorial disputes with China, terrorism and calamities in one of the world's most disaster-prone regions.More

IAEM Student Awards Competition reopened until Sept. 30, 2015
The IAEM-Awards Work Group on Sept. 3 reopened the IAEM Student Awards Competition for additional entries through Sept. 30, 2015, 5:00 p.m. EDT. There are two IAEM-Global Student award categories open to all IAEM Student members in all Councils, Student of the Year and Student Ally of the Year. There are two additional IAEM-USA Student Award categories open only to IAEM-USA Student members, Student Chapter of the Year and Student Advisor of the Year. Click on the links in this article to view award guidelines. More

Nashvillian sees shipping containers as way to help Haiti*
The Tennessean
When the concept of shipping containers as houses began to take hold in Nashville, it was touted as a means to boost affordable housing options in West Nashville. Andy Seavers, a recent Belmont University graduate and local entrepreneur, saw another possibility. His older brother, Luke Seavers, was looking for a business model that could provide housing relief in Haiti, still struggling with a large homeless population five years after its earthquake.More

The quiet Atlantic hurricane season could be the norm for years to come
USA Today
This week is the typical peak of hurricane season, and it's been quiet this year with no big storms on the horizon. Only two hurricanes — Danny and Fred — formed in the Atlantic basin so far this year, and neither came near the U.S. coast, according to the National Hurricane Center. The Atlantic basin includes the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico, as well as the Atlantic Ocean. Five tropical storms also formed, but only two — Ana and Bill — directly affected the U.S. More

Bringing together storm tracks and clouds
Columbia University via Phys.org
We often talk about future climate change in terms of "global warming." But when it comes to the impacts of global warming, regional changes in winds and precipitation are more relevant. The latter depend on how the circulation of the atmosphere responds to increasing CO2. A workshop held in August in Grindelwald, Switzerland, looked at one aspect of the atmospheric circulation that is particularly relevant to those that live in the mid-latitudes: the storm tracks. The coupling of storm tracks with clouds received particular attention. More

Only one month left to get discounted rates for the IAEM Annual Conference
Don't delay! The early bird registration fee can save you up to $100 off the registration fees, if you register by Oct. 13, 2015. Even if your travel or budget is not yet approved, secure your rate and space in select offerings by registering now and selecting "pay by check." View all IAEM payment options on the website. This is a not-to-be-missed event for all professionals in emergency management. Check out the dynamic list of speakers and view the complete online program. Can't attend IAEM in 2015, purchase our new Digital Pass to receive live stream and recordings from many of our featured sessions.More

Are you looking for information on the IAEM-USA Annual Conference & EMEX?
We have a website dedicated to just the Annual Conference, http://iaemconference.info/2015/. To obtain information on how to register, visit our registration page for a listing of the fees, early bird discounts, payment options, how to work off your registration, FAQs and much more. To learn about the keynote and feature speakers, visit the speaker listing page. IAEM also has a detailed online program with dates, exact times, session descriptions and speaker bios. If you don't know where to stay or what to do in Clark County in your free time, visit our hotel and lodging page. Information is available online for prospective exhibitors or sponsors at EMEX, IAEM's expo trade show. The Virtual EMEX offers a preview of exhibitors who will be at our show. If the website doesn't answer your questions, contact IAEM headquarters. Don't miss the IAEM 63rd Annual Conference & EMEX, Nov. 13-18, 2015, in Clark County, Nevada. Those who can't attend the conference have the option of purchasing a Digital Pass to receive live stream and recordings from many of our featured sessions.More

Current certified professionals are encouraged to become mentors
The CEM Commission encourages mentoring of applicants by current CEM®s. Those interested in mentoring should complete the Mentoring Approval Request Form after a mentee has expressed interest. Once approved, CEM®s may use mentoring activities toward one of the required professional contributions in their recertification application (with appropriate documentation).More

IAEM members are encouraged to share resources through the online IAEM Document Exchange
IAEM members are invited to upload documents that they wish to share with other members through the IAEM Document Exchange. Share documents you have created that would help other members, such as: exercise plans, training curricula, incident action plans, preparedness and community outreach materials, and EOC design plans. You can search for documents here. To upload documents, select the area that most closely reflects the type of document: Exercises, EOCs, Training; Incident Action; and Other. One of the greatest benefits of joining IAEM is that our association is the largest network of top emergency management experts who can offer solutions, guidance and assistance. One way that active IAEM members can contribute to this network is to share documents through the IAEM Document Exchange.More

Coming soon: FEMA Damage Assessment Operating Manual
In the coming weeks, FEMA will issue a draft of the FEMA Damage Assessment Operating Manual and solicit input from emergency management practitioners at the state, tribal, territorial, and local levels of government as well as private non-profit organizations. FEMA will conduct formal tribal consultations on this document. The FEMA Damage Assessment Operating Manual establishes national damage assessment standards developed from historic lessons learned and best practices already in use, and is intended to increase the accuracy, consistency, and efficiency of damage assessments by empowering emergency management at all levels with clear information and defined roles and responsibilities.More

IAFC and NVFC publish guide to minimizing injuries and deaths from accidents involving POV response
The International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) and the National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) have published Let's Make a Difference, a downloadable guide to help departments minimize injuries and deaths from occurring while responding in privately owned vehicles (POV). Many U.S. volunteer fire departments rely on POV responses out of necessity, and these vehicles do not meet the safety criteria required of official vehicles. The guide discusses training volunteers who use POVs in response, vehicle safety checks, a strict drug and alcohol policy, and more. The guide is available for download here.More

DOJ releases toolkit on 'Helping Victims of Mass Violence and Terrorism'
The U.S. Department of Justice's Office for Victims of Crime recently released the "Helping Victims of Mass Violence and Terrorism" toolkit to help communities prepare for and manage the many needs of victims of mass violence and terrorism. The toolkit, available online, addresses planning committee meetings, victim identification and family notification protocol, handling of personal effects, and the difference in needs between victims of violence and victims of natural disaster.More

Unified Federal Environmental and Historic Preservation Review Guide for Federal Disaster Recovery Assistance Applicants (Applicant Guide) released
FEMA, in coordination with the inter-agency steering group comprised of the Department of Homeland Security, the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, and the Council on Environmental Quality, released the Unified Federal Environmental and Historic Preservation Review Guide for Federal Disaster Recovery Assistance Applicants (Applicant Guide). Publication of the Applicant Guide is an important step in the implementation of the Unified Federal Review (UFR) Process, established in July 2014 through an interagency memorandum of understanding. The UFR Process provides federal agencies with opportunities to expedite environmental and historic preservation (EHP) reviews through enhanced coordination for all presidentially declared disasters. The Applicant Guide will assist applicants, (state and local agencies, Indian tribes, small business owners, individuals) in complying with EHP requirements when multiple agencies may be involved in funding or permitting a disaster recovery project. It also outlines the type of information applicants should submit to federal agencies to assist in expediting the EHP review.More

Red Guide to Disaster Recovery releases Native American edition
Indian Country Today Media Network
It's no secret that American Indian tribes are facing the brunt of the climate crisis, and that this often takes the form of dealing with disasters. What might not be so well known is a resource that helps disaster victims navigate the aftermath. The Red Guide to Recovery Resource Handbook for Disaster Survivors, a longstanding guide that gets distributed to fire departments and other assistance organizations, also has a version specifically geared toward tribes. More

Va. ECC coordinator becomes member of Secure Commonwealth Panel*
The Charlottesville Newsplex
The Emergency Management Coordinator for the Charlottesville-UVa-Albemarle County Emergency Communications Center has been sworn in to work on the Secure Commonwealth Panel. The panel will advise Governor Terry McAuliffe on the implementation of statewide prevention, preparedness, response and recovery initiatives, and makes recommendations related to emergency preparedness of government across the Commonwealth.More

RealtyTrac: 43 percent of US homes are reported to have high natural disaster risk
Realty Today
According to a 2015 U.S. Natural Disaster Housing Risk Report conducted by RealtyTrac, one of the leading source for comprehensive housing data, 35.8 million single family homes and condos in the U.S., with a combined estimated market value of $6.6 trillion, are in counties with high or very high natural hazard risks. Those 35.8 million homes represent 43 percent of the 83.4 million single family homes and condos in all the counties analyzed for the report.More

Big cities scramble to be prepared for an oil train disaster
The Associated Press via St. Paul Pioneer Press
They rumble past schools, homes and businesses in dozens of cities around the country — 100-car trains loaded with crude oil from the Upper Midwest. While railroads have long carried hazardous materials through congested urban areas, cities are now scrambling to formulate emergency plans and to train firefighters amid the latest safety threat: A fiftyfold increase in crude shipments that critics say has put millions of people living or working near the tracks at heightened risk of derailment, fire and explosion.More

NASEO's Initiative for Resiliency in Energy Through Vehicles featured in Motor Week
The National Association of State Energy Officials' (NASEO) Initiative for Resiliency in Energy Through Vehicles (iREV) was featured recently on Motor Week, in a segment featuring the role of alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) in emergency preparedness. The initiative brings together a unique cross-section of practitioners in emergency management, energy assurance, homeland security, and transportation to support the incorporation of alternative fuel vehicles in emergency response and preparedness operations. NASEO's iREV supports state and local emergency management decision makers by providing customized tools, information, and strategies about alternative fuel vehicle technologies, infrastructure and potential uses in emergency scenarios.More

U.S. Department of Transportation/PHMSA announces $19.9 million in First Responder Grants to help protect communities
The U.S. Department of Transportation's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) on Sept. 2 announced that grants totaling $19.9 million will go to states, territories and Native American tribes to improve the nation's response to hazardous materials transportation incidents. Since 1993, more than 2.5 million emergency responders around the country have received training assistance using PHMSA grants. PHMSA's Hazardous Materials Emergency Preparedness (HMEP) grants program allows recipients to design and implement planning and training programs according to the need. For this grant cycle, HMEP applicants were encouraged to allocate funding towards activities such as: developing or revising emergency plans and training activities to account for bulk transportation of energy products by rail and over the road; ensuring that state, Federal, and local emergency planning and preparedness is established, integrated, and mutually supportive; and increasing the availability of hazardous materials training to accommodate volunteer organizations. Grants from PHMSA are funded by annual user registration fees paid by shippers and carriers of certain hazardous materials in commerce. During grant period 2013-2014, HMEP grants funded more than 91,000 first responders in initial or refresher hazardous materials response training, over 1,300 new or revised hazardous materials emergency response plans, and over 950 hazardous materials exercises. All 50 states, five U.S. territories, and 10 Native American Indian tribes received HMEP grant funding this year. Download additional details here.More

SBA disaster preparedness webinar series began Sept. 9
The News Journal
Planning ahead for a potential disaster can be vital for avoiding the financial losses that can result from storms, power outages and other unexpected events. The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering a series of free 30-minute webinars in September designed to help small businesses prepare for a crisis, including power outages that will impact nearly 70 percent of all U.S. companies in the next 12 months.More

Over 1.5 million people hit by floods in Assam
Authorities in Assam are struggling to respond to massive floods which have affected more than 1.5 million people and forced more than 200,000 people to seek refuge in relief camps, senior government officials said on Monday. Heavy monsoon rains in the tea and oil-rich state have caused burgeoning rivers, including the mighty Brahmaputra, to burst their banks, killing more than 50 people this year, including 15 people in the past week.More

Flash floods sweep vehicles along Spanish street
BBC News
Footage has emerged of the moment when torrential storms in south east Spain caused flash floods that washed cars and trucks along a street. Fifty homes, 30 shops and 200 cars were damaged when flood waters swept through the town of Adra, in the province of Almeria. Heavy downfalls particularly affected the regions of Andalucia, Murcia and Valencia with more than 300 rain-related incidents being reported to the emergency services.More

Fireball hurtles over Thailand*
Bangkok Post
A large, bright fireball was seen streaking across the northern sky of Bangkok on Monday, leaving a trail of smoke, with sightings also reported in Korat and Kanchanaburi. Excited netizens immediately began posting messages, photographs and video on social media.More

Massive rock threatening to crash into base of Arizona dam*
The Associated Press via KTRK-TV
A massive piece of rock is at risk of crashing down from a canyon wall to the base of an Arizona dam, prompting the government to send in a crew of rappelers to keep the slab in place. The 500,000-pound slab — weighing more than many jumbo jets — began to break away from the canyon wall last week in what the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation attributes to erosion that is typical for that type of rock.More

Typhoon Etau pummels Japan with gales, heavy rain; evacuations ordered
The Japan Times
Typhoon Etau made landfall Sept. 9 on the Chita Peninsula in Aichi Prefecture. The weather agency warned of mudslides, flooding, and high winds and waves. Some trains and flights were canceled. There were partial closures on some highways and thousands of evacuations were in force.More