Emergency Planning: Washington Term Paper

Pages: 3 (793 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Transportation


There is no template, per se, that we can work from.

Another threat in Washington, DC is a transportation strike: Sounds simplistic, but a such a move would cripple the city's economy. Emergency planners have to be ready in case mass transit workers do ever strike and shut down the metro and the buses in Washington.

Just this week, Washington declared a state of emergency for snow. Although Washington is not as affected by weather as other cities - there are not tornados, hurricanes, etc. - snow and ice can still pose serious hazards that emergency planners will have to contend with.

In any emergency, though, urban search and rescue, law enforcement, medical assistance and government will have to operate in completely different contexts. That is why the emergency planners in Washington have come up with several contingency plans for each type of emergency.

Will martial law have to be declared? That is one of the most important questions in emergency management. At what point are our court systems rendered useless by the events around us? As a democracy, this is of course a very dangerous question to ask, but one that must be asked.

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At what point are law enforcement and government officials accorded more power because of the emergency situation? Legally, the army cannot be used to police the citizens because of Posse Comitatus, so the burden will fall on the police, both federal and local, and arguably on the National Guard.

TOPIC: Term Paper on Emergency Planning: Washington, DC Emergency Assignment

A serious emergency might call for activation of the National Guard to enforce peace and continuity of government. But still, the most important step for emergency planners to take is to anticipate every possible emergency. To that end, the DC city government has listed those possibilities: severe weather, urban fires, transportation accidents, special events - demonstrations, urban floods, utility and power failures, hurricanes, radiological and HAZMAT incidents, terrorism, civil disorders, water supply failures, critical resource shortages, explosions, earthquakes and tornadoes.

The challenge for emergency planners is to take that list and develop coherent plans to respond to each disaster, that can be modified as time progresses and as needs merit.

But with the resources of the federal and local government, emergency planning in Washington, DC could… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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