New FEMA lodging for Hurricane Irma Disaster Response Recovery

I was instructed by senior leadership to move lodging again. Now sleeping at Florida Keys International Airport Basecamp.

Luxurious? Nope, just on the airport taxiway at Echo. Right next to an active runway and aircraft are using the airfield all the time at Florida Keys International Airport.

Like any other location, you MUST check in.


You mean I get to pick my own king sized bed? AWESOME!!!


Home sweet home.


Need to shower? Just go into the trailer.


Need to use the bathroom? Just across the way. Always wear your boots because it’s flooded.


Splash splash. Fun times.


I said it before and I’ll say it again: If you dislike using porta-pottys all the time, you are not cut out for disaster response/recovery.

Reporting live from the airport taxiway…

@rusnivek

The 2016 NMHSEM State Conference 

Breaking down Winter Weather Hazards today at the state of New Mexico 2016 Homeland Security and Emergency Management Conference.


Solid bunch of preparedness and response peeps in the audience today.


Even had the pros from the NWS-Albuquerque staff here too.


Great discussion so far, excited for in-class activity this afternoon.

@rusnivek

Your image on social by monitoring your name Safety-PIO-SM-14-007

14-007: Your image on social by monitoring your name
Agency: Lakewood Fire Topic(s):         Monitoring your name/branding
Date: Fall 2014 Platform:        Twitter

Monitoring your namesake has been debated for years. But with decreased staffing and less time to do more with less, many agencies are bypassing this critical piece of community relations and image/branding. A good example is when a citizen commented on Lakewood Fire’s SUV parking.

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Everyone has a camera these days. We use them not only to capture memories and precious moments, but also for documentation and shaming. I believe Todd was going for the public safety shaming factor here. I am unsure on the previous relationship between Todd and Lakewood, but there was never a response on Twitter back to Todd. Truth be told, these days, unanswered public questions are sometimes perceived as a government agency cover-ups/issues. Similar to the “No comment” – a non-response might even be worse.

How do you monitor your agency’s name or any derivatives? Try these free services: Google Alerts, search columns in TweetDeck or Hootsuite, or frequent basic vanity searches on any search engine or social media platforms.

While Todd’s use of hashtags is fairly standard social media malarkey, a swift response with a timely and direct reply to Todd’s tweet would help stop the perception that LFD is breaking the law or even setting a bad example. Remember, social media is about digital interaction.

The response could also be a teaching point so share with your audience some insight into your normal operations with a simple message on Fire Prevention activities – like hydrant testing. And using the hashtag #FirePrevention pulls up thousands of tweets about educating the public specifically in fire safety.

An effective @reply response to Todd’s tweet could have read:

@stwrs1974 During an emergency, it’s tough to find safe parking. FYI-we also check/flush hydrants twice a year too #FirePrevention 

By phrasing it this way:

  1. You immediately address the issue directly with the citizen citing the issue.
  2. You provide insight into scene safety during an emergency.
  3. You call attention to your normal operations (in this case-hydrant flushing).
  4. You use the hashtag #FirePrevention to call attention to…well…Fire Prevention.
  5. You show the general public you care about your image and want to get the story right.

Time is valuable, so tweet good stuff.

@rusnivek

***To download this as a single-page printable format, click this file:

YourImageOnSocialByMonitoringYourName-Safety-PIO-SM-14-007

 

Press amenities…because they are our partners in safety right? #PIO

Media considerations: Press amenities.

aaa

Aside from giving the media the juicy story they crave…we should do a better job in considering their needs during a disaster.

However, in this day/age of media involvement and constant interaction, it would behoove us PIOs to better meet the needs of our partners (that’s right, I said partners) in safety.

For prolonged incidents, it would be nice if your agency:

  • Provided a bunch of plugs and/or outlets to use. Power seems to be a mandatory necessity during every day life. Just look at any airport with weirdos hunched around an open power plug.
  • Setting up a separate WiFi for media use only so they can meet their timely deadlines or push valuable info via social media. They are data hogs just like the rest of us. It has been proven for humans to exist, we need WiFi.
  • Held up white cards for white balance during setup…or better yet warm cards to help the videographers get their color scheme setup right. It does make you look like you just got back from someplace warm and now have a nice tan.
  • A simple cup of coffee would be a welcome olive branch in the midst of disaster/emergency. First informal rule of any disaster or emergency? A cup of coffee regularly ranks high on the scale of requests and necessities from everyone. Available 24/7.

Since we are breaking down barriers, we need to explore a few options to support our partners in safety. Look at this setup…

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…no seriously, look closer.

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What do you see?

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Build your relationships before a disaster and strengthen them as you continue to train exercise your skills. Partners in safety.

Let’s work together to better our response and enhance communications skills with just some basic needs for the press. Trust me, a little goes along way.

After all, the old adage goes: you can attract more friends with honey than vinegar…right?

@rusnivek