Owl: 70 Things That Will Go Wrong in a Disaster

Cultural Intelligence, IO Impotency, Law Enforcement
Who?  Who?
Who? Who?

70 Things That Can and Will Go Wrong in a Disaster

The first 25:

1. In an earthquake, there may be violent ground shaking; it will seem to last much longer than it actually does.

2. Fires will occur, caused by electrical shorts, natural gas, fireplaces, stoves, etc.

3. Fires in collapsed buildings will be very difficult to control.

4. The extent of the disaster will be difficult to assess, though this will be necessary to assure proper commitment of resources.

5. Emergency equipment and field units will commit without being dispatched. There will be an air of urgency and more requests for aid than units available to send.

6. Communications will be inadequate; holes will appear in the system and air traffic will be incredibly heavy.

7. Trained personnel will become supervisors because they will be too valuable to perform hands-on tasks.

8. Responding mutual aid units will become lost; they will require maps and guides.

9. Water will be contaminated and unsafe for drinking. Tankers will be needed for fire fighting and for carrying drinking water.

10. Citizens will volunteer but their commitment will usually be short-term.

11. There may be a multitude of hazardous materials incidents.

12. Aircraft will flood the area; law enforcement, fire, media, civilian, commercial and military aircraft will be a major concern.

13. The Command Post and/or EOC will be overrun with non-essential personnel; media, geologists, architects, engineers, representatives from other jurisdictions, etc.

14. Staging will be essential; the flow of personnel, equipment and supplies will be overwhelming.

15. Although it is an EOC function, the Field Command Post will become the temporary seat of government.

16. Electric power will be interrupted or will fail completely.

17. It will be difficult to shut off the gas; valves that are seldom, if ever, used will be difficult to find, and may not work when they are found.

18. Phone service will be erratic or non-existent. Pay phones will be the most reliable.

19. The media will have the best communications available; be prepared to share or impound their resources.

20. Fuel will not be available because there will be no electricity to run the pumps.

21. There will be an epidemic of flat tires; police, fire, and emergency medical vehicles will sustain a multitude of flat tires that will require repair in the field.

22. Fires will need to be investigated; mutual aid should include arson investigators.

23. The primary police department concern will be law enforcement; there will not be sufficient time or manpower to provide miscellaneous services.

24. It will be dark; there will not be enough generators or lights available.

25. Portable toilets will be in demand; there will be no place to go, and if a place is found there will be six photographers there to cover the event.

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