Incident Response System: Organization and Staffing

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ORGANIZATION & STAFFING INCIDENT RESPONSE SYSTEM Dr. P. Venu Madhav, MVSc, Veterinary Assistant Surgeon, Regional Animal Husbandry Training Centre, Visakhapatnam

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Introduction India is vulnerable to a large number of natural as well as man-made disasters. Heightened vulnerabilities due to expanding population, environmental degradation, unplanned urbanization, industrialization , etc. National Disaster Management Guidelines

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Introduction No single department can handle a disaster situation. Different departments have to work together. Formalized response management structure is needed. It lends consistency, fosters efficiency & provides appropriate direction during response. National Disaster Management Guidelines

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Introduction Various tasks may need to be performed by the existing machinery at various levels . Prior identification of officers for the performance of different tasks & train in their respective roles. All the line departments must function in tandem with State & district administration. National Disaster Management Guidelines

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Incident Response System Combination of facilities , equipment, personnel, procedure & communications Operating within a common organizational structure W ith responsibility for the management of assigned resources T o effectively accomplish stated objectives pertaining to an incident National Disaster Management Guidelines

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IRS Organization

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Responsible Officer (RO) Responsible & accountable by law to respond to disasters. The CSs & the DM/DCs will perform the role of ROs & will be responsible for all response activities during any crisis . Direct intervention of the RO not always needed. The Incident Commander (IC) to whom powers are delegated by the RO handles the crises. National Disaster Management Guidelines

INCIDENT Commander:

INCIDENT Commander Overall in-charge for the management of onsite response. Appointed by the RO. May have a deputy depending on magnitude & nature of incident . Has two sets of staff : a ) Command Staff & b) General Staff.

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Role & Responsibilities of IC Obtain information on : Situation status like number of people & area affected Availability & procurement of resources Requirement of facilities like ICP, Staging Area, Incident Base, Camp, Relief Camp, etc. Availability & requirements of Communication system Future weather behavior from IMD Any other information required for response

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Role & Responsibilities of IC ii. Determine incident objectives & strategies based on the available information & resources ; iii. Establish immediate priorities, including search & rescue & relief distribution strategies ; iv. Assess requirements for maintenance of law & order, traffic etc. if any at the incident site , & make arrangements with help of the local police; v . Brief higher authorities about the situation & request for additional resources, if required; vi Extend support for implementation of AC & UC if considered necessary by the RO;

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Role & Responsibilities of IC vii. Establish appropriate IRS organization with Sections , Branches, Divisions &/ or Units based on the span of control & scale of the incident; viii. Establish ICP at a suitable place; ix. Ensure that the IAP is prepared; Ensure that team members are briefed on performance of various activities as per IAP; Approve & authorize the implementation of an IAP & ensure IAP is regularly developed; Ensure that planning meetings are held at regular intervals;

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Role & Responsibilities of IC xiii. Ensure that all units are working as per IAP; xiv. Ensure that adequate safety measures for responders & affected communities are in place; Ensure proper coordination between all Sections of the IRT, & resolve conflicts if any; xvi. Ensure that computerized & IT solutions are used for planning, resource mobilization & deployment of trained IRT members ; xvii. Consider requirement of resources, equipment which are not available in the functional jurisdiction , discuss with PSC and LSC & inform RO regarding their procurement;

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Role & Responsibilities of IC xviii. A pprove & ensure that the required additional resources are procured & issued & utilized. xix. Establish contact with PRIs, ULBs, CBOs, NGOs etc. & seek their cooperation; xx. Approve the deployment of volunteers & such other personnel & ensure that they follow the chain of command; Authorize release of information to the media ; Ensure that the record of resources mobilized from outside is maintained so that prompt payment can be made for hired resources;

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Role & Responsibilities of IC xxiii. Ensure that Incident Status Summary (ISS) is completed & forwarded to the RO; xxiv. Recommend demobilization of the IRT, when appropriate ; Review public complaints & recommend suitable redressal measures to the RO ; Ensure that the NGOs & others deployed in the affected sites are working properly; Ensure preparation of After Action Report (AAR) prior to the demobilization of the IRT on completion of the incident response.

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Role & Responsibilities of IC xxviii. Perform any other duties that may be required for the management of the incident; xxix. Ensure that the record of various activities performed by members of Branches, Divisions, Units/Groups are collected and maintained in the Unit Log & finally, xxx . Perform such other duties as assigned by RO.

COMMAND STAFF:

COMMAND STAFF IC is the head of the IRT. IC has to lead the IRT To assist the IC in discharge of the responsibilities, he has a set of officers who are part of the command staff. Information & Media Officer (IMO) Safety Officer (SO) Liaison Officer (LO)

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Composition of Command Staff RESPONSIBLE OFFICER

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Information & Media Officer (IMO) Prepare & release information about the incident to the media agencies & others with the approval of IC; Jot down decisions taken & directions issued in case of sudden disasters when the IRT has not been fully activated & hand it over to the PS on its activation for incorporation in the IAP; i . ii . COMMAND STAFF

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Information & Media Officer (IMO) Ask for additional personnel support depending on the scale of incident & workload ; Monitor & review various media reports; O rganize IAP meetings; Collect weather information & disseminate it to all concerned; Maintain record of various activities performed; Perform such other duties as assigned by IC. COMMAND STAFF

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Liaison Officer (LO ) COMMAND STAFF Maintain a list of concerned line departments & agencies; Carry out liaison with all concerned agencies including NDRF, Armed Forces & line departments of Government ; Monitor Operations to identify current or potential inter-agency problems ; Participate in planning meetings & provide information; A sk for personnel support if required;

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Liaison Officer (LO ) COMMAND STAFF Keep the IC informed about arrivals of all the Government & NGO agencies & their resources; Help in organizing briefing sessions with the IC; Maintain record of various activities performed; and Perform such other duties as assigned by IC.

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Safety Officer ( S O ) Recommend measures for assuring safety of responders and to assess or anticipate hazardous and unsafe situations and review it regularly; Ask for assistants & assign responsibilities as required; Participate in planning meetings for preparation of IAP; Review the IAP for safety implications; COMMAND STAFF

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Safety Officer ( S O ) Obtain details of accidents that have occurred within the incident area if required or as directed by IC & inform the appropriate authorities; Review & approve the Site Safety Plan; Maintain record of various activities performed; and Perform such other duties as assigned by IC. COMMAND STAFF

GENERAL STAFF:

GENERAL STAFF The general staff consists of the OS, PS and LS, each having a specific function in the overall response . LOGISTICS SECTION PLANNING SECTION OPERATIONS SECTION

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OPERATIONS SECTION OS deals with all types of field level operations, headed by an Operation Section Chief (OSC). OS is further sub-divided into Branches , Divisions and Groups which assist the OSC / IC in the execution of the field operations.

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PLANNING SECTION Matters relating to the planning of the incident response, headed by the Planning Section Chief (PSC ). Helps IC in determining the objectives & strategies. It works out requirements for resources, their allocation and subsequent utilization . Maintains up to date information, prepares IAP and IDP.

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LOGISTICS SECTION Matters relating to procurement of resources and establishment of facilities Deals with financial matters, headed by the Logistic Section Chief (LSC) Logistic support like food , medical supplies, shelter & communications . Procurements done quickly & in accordance with rules .

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Composition of General Staff

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IRT Framework

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IRTs at State level

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IRTs at District level

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