Minutes of Emergency Preparedness Committee Meeting
(March 26th, 2020)
Members participating: Yvette Fleming, Harry Kellogg, Kurt Nelson, Roger Lindgren and Owen Polifka
This meeting was devoted to reviewing and updating the various sections of the Town of Bell Emergency Action Plan.
First of all, the committee agreed that the Definition of a Disaster is acceptable as is, however, Kurt agreed to take a look at the wording.
The Purpose was deemed acceptable as is, however, Roger agreed to include a statement designed to educate remote visitors who enter into our township. He will write it and forward it to Harry.
The Authority and Description sections were determined to be acceptable as is.
We all agreed the Sanitary District Map is a significantly well-designed map, hence, we will keep it.
The section Jeff wrote regarding Emergency (EMS) Services is acceptable. His Mutual Aid and Understandings are acceptable as well. However, we agreed that Matt and Jeff could add a statement regarding our neighboring town’s inventory of emergency assets (Heavy Equipment Availability) that could possibly be shared in the event of an emergency.
Yvette’s Nearest Trauma Centers and Law Enforcement sections are acceptable.
The Incident Command Post and Potential Shelter section was fine, except that the square footage parameters were converted to number of people to accommodate for both the main event room as well as the basement meeting room of the Community Center (140 persons and 40 persons respectively). The Red Cross has methodology which was used to convert square footage to number of individuals who can shelter in an area.
Owen’s Local Churches section was deemed acceptable as well. The Lutheran church basement is not really appropriate for shelter use, but would be an adequate space to shelter for a tornado or extreme weather event.
Description of Population/Housing Layout: It was determined that this section needs to include a map. We looked at a map that Harry put together and concluded that it was an effective map for that purpose.
Kurt inquired about the Availability of Fuel section being presented in such a way that any potential agency coming to our aid would be advised as such. The local gas station, however, does not have a generator that would be required to pump gas in the event of a power outage. It was pointed out, however, that Tillmans (marina) have a gas pump that is typically used for boats and that they do possess a generator.
Yvette pointed out the need to address Special Needs Residents in terms of a statement. This issue could be assisted by the “Neighbor to Neighbor” program that already exists in our area. It was determined that the list of services for special needs individuals should not be included and was deleted.
With regards to Evacuation Procedures, Yvette pointed out that a potential method of providing an evacuation plan could be augmented by employing one or more buses that Roger Branham has at his disposal.
Kurt pointed out that local retirees have a significant influence in the local economy and should be included in the Local Economy section. Otherwise, this section is acceptable.
The Short Description of Past Emergency Experiences was determined to be acceptable. Owen added that if this list was expanded in any way, we would have to delete the word, Short.
The entire sections of Hazards and Risk Potential as well as Flood Elevation needs to be reviewed and re-written as they are confusing and are replete with redundancies. Yvette and Harry will be addressing these issues.
The section entitled Fire Hazard was deemed acceptable as is.
The Town of Bell Emergency Action Plan Contact List put together by Anna is acceptable and we appreciate her assistance. The list of radio stations was reduced to those with accompanying phone numbers.
The Concept of Operation along with The Commander’s Responsibilities including FEMA’s organizational chart that Harry included is acceptable.
The Incident Command Post section is acceptable as is. The address of Immanuel Lutheran Church was added as the church will be made available as a Command Post in the event that the Community Center is rendered unusable for any reason. Jan Victorson’s phone number will be included as in the event of a reported emergency, she would, in return, contact NOAA if necessary. Yvette stated that purchasing a NOAA radio should be encouraged for as many residents as possible.
The remaining sections are considered acceptable for now with the following exceptions:
Owen suggested that we add Pandemics to the list of Hazards and Risk Potential. Ice Storms will occupy a separate line as will Lake Superior Seiche Events. Yvette will compose a statement regarding potential Lake Superior seiche events. Owen will add a section on Pandemic Readiness. Kurt will review and re-write a section on Loss of Services and Recovery Operations.
Next Meeting: Once again, will happen via Zoom.com at 1:30 pm on Thursday, April 9th.
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