Prepositioning emergency response equipment, whether on site or through contracted vendors, improves companys’ ability to quickly and successfully respond to emergencies. In addition to identifying the required personnel and response teams needed for specific emergencies, emergency managers need to identify the necessary response equipment to meet identified vulnerabilities.
Effective response equipment deployment requires the following minimal pre-planning:
1. Identifying necessary response resources for each applicable hazard
2. Acquiring necessary equipment or contracting with response organizations
3. Ensuring a training and maintenance programs is in place
4. Mobilizing resources in the event of an incident
5. Tracking and reporting deployed resources
6. Demobilizing required resources
7. Performing a post incident inventory and replenishing/refurbishing equipment as needed
Coordinating with response contractors and local and state resources can reduce the need to purchase and maintain all required equipment at smaller facilities. In addition, a well thought-out, tested, and available emergency response plan improves the potential for a rapid, effective response, thereby reducing the potential for an emergency to escalate.
However, in the event of a large scale disaster, FEMA has established the Prepositioned Equipment Program (PEP) to provide additional support to first responders. PEP strategically located sites are each supplied with standardized emergency first responder equipment.
According to FEMA, each site in the continental US has a 600 miles radius, enabling a response within 12 hours of an incident. There are ten PEP support teams located across the United States:
1. Kansas City, MO
2. Middletown, NY
3. Kent, WA
4. Sacramento, CA
5. Columbia, SC
6. McDonough, GA
7. Fort Worth, TX
8. Salt Lake City, UT
9. Frederick, MD
10. Las Vegas, NV
The PEP sites are able to provide and replenish responders with the following:
● Personnel protective equipment
● Detection instrumentation
● Emergency medical supplies
● Technical rescue equipment
● Decontamination equipment
● Interoperable communication equipment
● Logistic support equipment
Resource management should be flexible and scalable in order to support any potentially escalating incident. By coordinating applicable response equipment plans with comprehensive resource management concepts, companies will be better prepared to respond to emergencies.
For more details on available equipment provided by the PEP, review FEMA’s Prepositioned Equipment Program Overview.
For tips and best practices on designing a crisis management program, download Best Practices for Crisis Management.