Environmental Engineering Reference
phase. A government inventory survey (GIS) can be very useful in quickly
identifying available resources. For example, if emergency response personnel
may be exposed to toxic or radioactive materials, a decontamination center
may be required. Portable, inflatable tents have been designed for this purpose.
Whatever means are employed, procedures should be in place for their use.
Additional consideration should also be given to the possible need for vehicle
wastewater, and agreements could be made with them.
The planning team should make arrangements assuring that emergency medical
treatment will be available. The plan should consider the placement of a triage
area near the scene of an event. Agreements should be established with local
ambulance companies who will be directed to this area to transport the severely
injured to area hospitals or treatment centers. The planning team should ensure
that medical personnel at the designated centers are aware of the potential health
Sheltering in place is the most desirable mode of public protection in
fast-moving industrial emergency events. However, evacuation of areas near the
scene may be necessary. The planning team should develop an evacuation plan
that describes optimal routes and identifies relocation centers. Public schools
are often designated as relocation centers because they have cafeterias, adequate
sanitary facilities, and large open gymnasiums.
Equipment The equipment needed for emergency operations at the local level
is, to some degree, generic, yet also hazard specific. Emergency operations centers
are equipped to handle any kind of major emergency. Communications equipment
will be essentially the same in all cases, as will public warning systems and
notification methods, traffic and access control, public works, law enforcement,
and health and medical services. Computers connected to the Internet and copy
and fax equipment should be available for electronic/hard-copy transmission and
reception of data and messages.
Large-scale maps of the planning area should be prominently displayed in the
local EOC. Major transportation and evacuation routes, as well as identified haz-
ard locations with their vulnerable zones, are provided on the base map. Airborne
dispersion plume projection overlays or templates are useful additions, espe-
cially for transportation accidents involving toxic releases or spills, with known
wind speed and direction and populations at risk identified promptly for protec-
tive action. Specialized equipment for response to industrial plant emergencies
depends on the nature of the identified hazards. Much of this necessary planning
information comes from the hazards analysis process. Here, again, a GIS is useful
because it allows a large amount of information to be stored electronically and
then integrated with other relevant information to evaluate relationships.
Content of the Plan and Procedures
The best local-level contingency plan attempts to consider all potential hazards
and is adaptable enough to accommodate those identified in the future. However,