The Whole Community: Planning for the Unthinkable

What is Whole Community?

In our nation’s effort to increase preparedness for every conceivable hazard, our biggest strength starts with you: Every individual and every organization has an important role in making our communities –and the nation as a whole –more resilient. In policy terms, we are taking a “Whole Community” approach to national preparedness. What that means in plain language is that we are actively working together with individuals, businesses, community- and faith-based organizations, schools, tribes and all levels of government to improve preparedness. In fact, the President signed Presidential Policy Directive 8/PPD-8: National Preparedness in March 2011, asking all of us to work together on this issue.

Help us Plan for the Unthinkable

Response
Response is focused on ensuring that the nation is able to respond effectively to any threat or hazard, including disasters that have ripple effects into other areas. We place an emphasis on saving and sustaining lives and stabilizing the incident, as well as meeting basic human needs as quickly as possible, restoring basic services and community functions, establishing a safe and secure environment, and supporting the transition to recovery.

The MetaScenario
Although we plan for all types of emergencies year around, we are taking this up a notch to challenge not just FEMA and its government partners – but the nation as a whole. The challenge is to find ever more innovative ways to fulfill critical needs when all of the usual and expected methods are unavailable. To do this, we are using what we call a “MetaScenario.” A MetaScenario is an event or combination of events so large that it seems almost inconceivable. In terms of numbers, this would be a disaster that affects millions of people, with hundreds of thousands of deaths and injuries across a range of multiple states.

Sample MetaScenario
A Category 5 hurricane on the scale of Hurricane Andrew is fast approaching southern Florida, forcing mass evacuations in preparation for landfall. Even as the state takes its normal actions, hospitals across Florida and surrounding states are reporting unusually high numbers of patients exhibiting symptoms of a fatal and fast-spreading illness of unknown origin. Compounding both of these issues is a large population of non-English speaking residents and large elderly and disabled community. Clearly, both the pending hurricane and the rapidly spreading illness are critical priorities. All hospitals are full or in the hurricane path. Forty percent or more of the first responders are, or soon will, exhibit signs of illness, further weakening the resources typically used to help and further taxing the system. As the hurricane makes landfall, 7 million people across Florida are in an evacuation zone. Over 190,000 people are dead from the mystery illness, which is now believed to be food-born and not contagious, but still the source is unknown. Another 265,000 are requiring immediate medical attention. Furthermore, transportation workers, utility workers, and other key response workers are among those impacted by the illness, and are unable to keep up with power outages and other infrastructure failures.

Campaigns

The campaigns below are designed to stimulate creative, out-of-the box thinking. After reading the sample MetaScenario above, tell us how you think the private sector could help fulfill urgent needs listed below. We welcome your thoughts, ideas, or suggestions on any or all of the following topics:

Campaign: The Whole Community: Planning for the Unthinkable

Preparedness Games

Building resiliency should begin with the kids in jr high and high school, getting these kids interested could be helped by creating " CERT Games " where CERT trained school kids compete against other schools in competitions demonstrating preparedness skills. Like the ' JEMS Games ' for EMS, link here: http://www.jems.com/article/training/2012-jems-games-use-simulation-integrate-0 it would give a forum for these kids ...more »

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Campaign: The Whole Community: Planning for the Unthinkable

Data Recovery Options-Technology Assets

Hello everyone. I work for Gillware, Inc.. We are a professional data recovery service provider located in region 5. We recover data from failed hard drives and any storage device up to server RAIDs. While we have been busy with hard drives from Hurricane Sandy from businesses to residents, most of our customers from this event came to us from personal research. We are a GSA contract holder but noone found us through ...more »

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Campaign: The Whole Community: Planning for the Unthinkable

Power outage threats

Get trees cut back from power lines. I am sure that 90% of the recent power outages were caused by evergreen trees ripping down wires. No government body makes property owners do this. The outages even prevented much cell phone operation. We were totally cut off and in fear. Also, homeland security is compromised because law enforcement cannot be contacted. This storm was the second in a year and the scientists tell us ...more »

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Campaign: The Whole Community: Planning for the Unthinkable

Expect more storms, 5 agrees,1 disagree,ZERO comments. See below

Please -- do not help NY & NJ rebuild the homes on the beaches. That would be a waste of time and money. We are destined to be hit with more storms – those areas will be destroyed again, and again, and... in your lifetime. Someone needs to tell the citizens of our country that it is time to change. We need to wake the country up with regard to the realities of the future. We need to put in place actions to minimize the ...more »

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Campaign: The Whole Community: Planning for the Unthinkable

ProEarth

1. Look to Websites, there a number of them,such as ProEarthdev.com for 2 pages that teach how to use sandbags so they actually work.People really need to understand these facts or sandbags fail! Knowing how is the single most important thing about using sandbags so that they actually do the job! Please, please help people to know how through media or any other way possible. 2. Desparate people in flood situations could ...more »

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Campaign: The Whole Community: Planning for the Unthinkable

My Brothers Keeper

The idea is for a HOUSING BANK. FEMA would put out a call for people willing to take disaster victims into their own homes, until the disaster area was safe for them to return. (Second homes and lake cabins could also be offered) FEMA reimburses homeowners for costs. This would be an ongoing nationwide housing bank that could be called on immediately to get victims shelter, food, and other necessities so they don't linger ...more »

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Campaign: The Whole Community: Planning for the Unthinkable

HURRICANE DESTROYER (cyclone destroyer)

. When the machine reaches the cyclone area, the fiber balloon is sucked towards the center area of the cyclone because of the centripetal action and since the balloon is oval in shape, its floating capacity on air is more and also more at a lower height over the sea level. During this time, since the balloon slants, the angle set on the Gimballing system switches off the propeller. If the movement of the speed exceeds ...more »

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Campaign: The Whole Community: Planning for the Unthinkable

Reception Revitalization Program

To provide an infrastructure combining preparedness,communications, unity and community, involvement with education, business creation inovation, and public managability organizations, using abandoned store fronts and networking organizations and neighborhood care groups; will give us a working network, and a mobile community as is needed in desaster assistance.

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Campaign: The Whole Community: Planning for the Unthinkable

Volunteers in Public Safety Support

Combining guidelines established under the Volunteers in Policing and Explorer Scouting, the Columbus Urban Area developed the Public Safety Support Citizens Academy/VIPS program. The program emphasizes Homeland Security in the certified curriculum. The program is two pronged – one for adults who have graduated from a recognized Citizen Police/Fire Academy (local, county, state or federal) and one for youth who are ...more »

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Campaign: The Whole Community: Planning for the Unthinkable

The truly unthinkable

A couple of years ago California conducted an earthquake exercise for a 7.9 Richter Scale quake. This level of quake was set because anything greater would be impossible to plan for, think about. With this as a partial stimulus, I developed a catastrophic mass fatality plan precisely for the purpose of responding to "the unthinkable." The plan assumes a massive death rate, infrastructure ground to a halt, no outside resources ...more »

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Campaign: The Whole Community: Planning for the Unthinkable

Unity in the CommUNITY through Preparedness!

Since so many of us go to Church, it seems like the perfect place to begin. Congregations can access their members to see who has or can train and teach preparedness for their communities. I believe that all condensed housing areas, ( apartments, condos, gated communities and etc.) can have training and even store supplies that are accessible to their areas also. I am willing and able to work with others in planning and ...more »

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