Case Study of Hurricane Sandy Describe the training and function of a federal Urban Search and Rescue team. APA Format, Please see the attachments below. C

Case Study of Hurricane Sandy Describe the training and function of a federal Urban Search and Rescue team. APA Format, Please see the attachments below. Case Study Options
You must select one topics from the options below. Your paper should connect the course material with
the case study topic. As this is a case study, you should pick a specific example or event as it relates to
the broader topic you select from the list. For example, if you choose topic #1 (“Choose one landmark
document, theory, or system…”), and you select the NRF or Volunteer Protection Act, do not just
describe the document. You need to apply the document to a specific group or event and present an indepth critical analysis of the topic. You do not need to cover every single aspect of the document; rather
focus on explaining those that apply.
For another example, if you choose topic # 4 (“Discuss the roles of individuals and organizations, as well
as their relationships with one another, in emergency management”), identify and research a specific
group (e.g., a type of volunteer group) or a specific event (e.g. Hurricane Sandy) and discuss elements of
the group or event in relation to the field of emergency management as reviewed in the course
6. Describe the training and function of a federal Urban Search and Rescue team.
The Role of the Military in Disaster Response
The Role of the Military in Disaster Response:
A Case Study of Hurricane Sandy
Alita Ostapkovich
September 12, 2016
The Role of the Military in Disaster Response
The rise in large scale disasters has begun to increase the role of the military in response
activities. To some, this is not a trend they want to see continued. It has been argued that
military forces have too much to worry about already, and that if allowed, states will begin
asking for federal military assistance for disaster events which could easily be taken care of
using state supplies (Committee on Homeland Security, 2005). However, this controversy is not
the focus of this paper. This paper discusses the types of military able to be called upon for
disaster response operations and the capabilities and resources they bring with them. Using
Hurricane Sandy, it discusses the role of the military in modern disaster response.
Definition of Types of Military
There are two different military types that can be called into action in responding to a
disaster—Active and Reserve forces and the National Guard. The active and reserve forces
cover the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corp, and Coast Guard (Cieply, 2008). These soldiers
can only be called into action by the President, and fall under the category of Title 10 forces
(Burke & McNeil, 2015). The National Guard, also referred to as Title 32 forces, are the state’s
militia (Cieply, 2008). The National Guard can be called in by either the state governor or the
President. Their status changes depending on who called them into action (Cieply, 2008).
Capabilities and Resources Supplied by Military
When local resources have become overwhelmed, a community can look to the state and
federal government to support the disaster relief operations. Often times, help comes in the form
of the military (Committee on Homeland Security, 2005). The military is able to provide
significant capabilities to communities in need.
There are four main types of military response available to states in need (IS 75, 2011).
These are: Mutual Aid Assistance Agreements, Immediate Response Authority, deployment of
The Role of the Military in Disaster Response
state military resources and federal military forces. Mutual Aid Assistance Agreements are
established between states, prior to a disaster striking, that arrange for supplies and personnel to
be given in times of need (IS 75, 2011). One example of a Mutual Aid Assistance Agreement is
an Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC). EMACs are “nonbinding
collaborative arrangements that create a legal framework for states to assist one another in
managing a disaster or emergency declared by a governor” (IS 75, 2011). Through EMACs a
governor from one state can send his/her National Guard to aid in response activities. Food,
water, transportation, fuel, and medical teams can also be acquired through an EMAC.
The second way to receive aid is through an Immediate Response Authority (IRA) (IS 75,
2011). IRAs are a way to get Department of Defense help at a municipal, county or tribal level
(IS, 2011). These are especially helpful when time does not permit prior approval from higher
headquarters (IS 75, 2011). IRAs are helpful since the community in need is able to receive
support during imminently serious conditions and not have to worry about the red tape slowing
down their response activities. One fallback to requesting support via an IRA is that DoD
responses are limited based on the availability of their resources and the circumstances of the
event (IS, 2011).
Thirdly, the governor may choose to activate the state military resources. National Guard
forces can serve in three different duty statuses, each having their own benefits and pitfalls
(Burke & McNeil, 2015). If activated by the governor, the National Guard units may act as law
enforcement, supply heavy duty equipment and participate in search and rescue, triage
operations, evacuations, and damage assessment (IS 75, 2011). The final way to receive military
assistance is through Presidential activation of military forces. This usually follows the
The Role of the Military in Disaster Response
declaration of a major disaster or emergency by the President under the Stafford Act (IS 75,
2011). Military help is requested through Mission Assignments by FEMA (IS 75, 2011).
The military brings a unique set of capabilities and supplies that are extremely valuable
during emergency situations. They can contribute situational awareness capabilities, set up joint
logistic bases, and deploy chemical-biological weapons of mass destructions (Committee on
Homeland Security, 2005). Additionally, they can assist in medical and public health endeavors.
With the use of transport helicopters, navy hospitals and trained medical personnel, the military
can respond to any size disaster with skilled efficacy and aid in saving hundreds of lives
(Committee on Homeland Security, 2005). If needed, the military can also bring in large pieces
of equipment such as D7F Bulldozers, M1977 Common Bridge Transporters (IS 75, 2011),
power restoration vehicles, large water pumps, and transport vehicles (Jacoby & Grass, 2013).
However, for as many skills the military brings, they also bring problems.
Problems with Military/National Guards Responding
Coordination and law restriction are the two biggest issues. With National Guard forces
and reserve forces working alongside each other, there is a potential for confusion in the chain of
command (Jacoby & Grass, 2013). Because each set of forces have their own chain of
command, and incident commander, differing orders may arise. This can also lead to a misuse of
resources, as well as an overlap or gap in resources. The second issue deals with restrictions put
in place by the Constitution. Active Duty military resources have limitations on how they may
be used during an emergency (IS 75, 2011). The biggest restriction is their inability to act as law
enforcement (IS 75, 2011). When called in by a governor, the National Guard may act as law
enforcement (Burke & McNeil, 2015). However, this is not the case when the National Guard is
deployed by the President. Under Presidential declaration, the Guard can no longer act as law
The Role of the Military in Disaster Response
enforcement, and instead can only assist in response efforts. While important, these law
restrictions are not of major concern to the US government. The lack of coordination during
response efforts is what has led to changes in military assistance.
2012 National Defense Authorization Act
Because of the many mismanaged response efforts, Congress created the 2012 National
Defense Authorization Act. This act worked to remedy the potential confusion in the chain of
command during military response activities (Jacoby & Grass, 2013). It enabled individual
states and the DoD to coordinate their response efforts through one single commander (Jacob &
Grass, 2013). This commander, who is given control of all military forces, is usually a National
Guard officer, since he/she has the ability to be deployed as either National Guard or Active
Military. The position is called the Dual-Status Commander (Jacoby & Grass, 2013). Even
though the Dual-Status Commander leads all military forces and directs response efforts, the
state and federal forces maintain separate chains of commands (Jacoby & Grass, 2013). This
allows for coordination between response forces without the creation and disruption of a new,
integrated chain of command. While this position had been deployed for many small disaster
responses, Hurricane Sandy was the first large-scale, no notice/limited notice event that tested
the Dual-Status Commander role.
Dual Status during Hurricane Sandy
In October 2012, a category one hurricane hit the eastern shore of the United States
(Burke & McNeil, 2015). The storm touched down less than 100 miles south of New York City,
laying waste on homes, transportation systems and infrastructure. Days before landfall,
President Obama declared state of emergencies for many of the eastern states (Burke & McNeil,
2015). This allowed for military resources to begin preparation for their response efforts.
The Role of the Military in Disaster Response
Two days after the hit, command structure had been established, and bordering states
were sending their troops and supplies (Burke, 2015). New York had around 5,000 military men
and women responding (Funkino & Miklos, 2013). Help, in the form of EMAC forces, came
from Delaware, Kansas, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Ohio (Funkino & Miklos, 2013).
They brought with them medical assessment teams, air national guard fueling teams, a liaison
officer team, a power assessment team and the 1049 truck company (Funkino & Miklos, 2013).
The dual status commander of the storm response was Brigadier General Michael Swezey
(Burke, 2015).
Under BG Swezey, the National Guard and EMAC forces were given ten mission sets.
Examples of these included: aerial and ground transportation support, HAZMAT identification
and response, communications and support, law enforcement and search and rescue (Funkino &
Miklos, 2013). In the 110 days that the National Guard and US Military forces were responding
they accomplished all ten mission sets and carried out 224 missions, completed 538 flight hours
to support operations, rescued 738 civilians and moved more than 92,000 tons of commodities
(Funkino & Miklos, 2013). Additionally, troops were deployed to do door to door wellness
checks, and distributed over 3,000 turkeys to families in need for Thanksgiving (Funkino &
Miklos, 2013). Due to political pressure, the President ordered responders to worry less about
paperwork and focus on executing missions (Burke, 2015). This helped by unburdening the
military forces, and allowing them to do the greatest good in a timely manner.
Hurricane Sandy showed the nation that implementing a Dual Action Commander to
direct both Title 10 and Title 32 troops is the next step in a fully coordinated disaster response.
Additionally, the use of Emergency Planning Liaison Officers throughout the joint military
operations also proved beneficial during response activities (Burke, 2015). These officers aided
The Role of the Military in Disaster Response
in coordinating communications, operational decision making and increased important staff
elements in the joint field office (Burke, 2015). Without these liaison officers, the dual action
commander’s position and coordination of the military forces would have been near impossible
(Burke, 2015). However, while there were many successes seen during the response to
Hurricane Sandy, there is much room for improvement. The largest shortfall was the differing of
preparation level between military forces and civil authorities (Burke, 2015). If the military are
going to be involved in more disaster response efforts, an increase in joint training and exercises
is needed to bridge the gap between military and civilian response preparation. Additionally, the
call to ignore mission paperwork came from impatient political heads. This, while not a major
problem, should not become standard practice for future events.
Over the past few decades, disaster response efforts have been increasingly supported by
military actions. This has caused a large amount of controversy as well as glaring problems in
response coordination. Small steps toward total coordination occur after every large event the
United States faces. The most current disaster, Hurricane Sandy, was no different. This disaster
allowed the government to test the position of a Dual Status Commander on a no notice/limited
notice event, and ended with positive results. While there are some kinks that still need to be
worked out, the position has proven to be a powerful tool for improving coordination between
military types in disaster response efforts, and will surely be used in response activities to come.
The Role of the Military in Disaster Response
Burke, R. (2015). The Dual Status Commander and Hurricane Sandy: Maturing Military
Response with Process Improvement. (Doctoral Dissertation, University of Delaware) Retrieved
from: Proquest. Number: 3718321
Burke, R & McNeil, S. (April, 2015). Toward a Unified Military Response: Hurricane Sandy and
the Dual Status Commander. Strategic Studies Institute. Retrieved from:
Cieply, K. (2008). Charting a New Role for Title 10 Reserve Forces: A Total Force Response to
Natural Disasters. Military Law Review. Volume 196. Pages 2-46.
DoD. (1 November, 2012). Coast Guard Responds to Superstorm Sandy Damage. Retrieved
Funkino, S., & Miklos, M. (2013). The Role of the Military in Disaster Response and
Superstorm Sandy. Lecture presented in Maxwell School of Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY.
Retrieved from:
IS 75. (May 2011). Military Resources in Emergency Management. Federal Emergency
Management Agency. Retrieved from:
Jacoby, C & Grass, F. (11 March, 2013). Dual-Status, Single Purpose: A Unified Military
Response to Hurricane Sandy. Retrieved from:
Purpura, P. (8 January, 2013). New Federal Law, First Used in Superstorm Sandy, Streamlines
Federal Military Response. The Times-Picayune. Retrieved from:
Roulo, C. (27 August, 2014). DoD Plays Key Role in Disaster Response, Official Says. US
Department of Defense. Retrieved from:
U.S. Congress, Committee on Homeland Security (9 November, 2005). Responding to
Catastrophic Events: The Role of the Military and National Guard in Disaster Response. Joint
Hearing the Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Science, and Technology of the
Committee on Homeland Security with the Subcommittee on Terrorism, Unconventional Threats
and Capabilities of the Committee of the Armed Services. Retrieved from:
Running Head: FIRESCOPE, Incident Command System, and the 2013 Boston Marathon
FIRESCOPE, Incident Command System, and the 2013 Boston Marathon Bombings
Carlyn M. Christensen-Szalanski
Philadelphia University
FIRESCOPE, Incident Command System, and the 2013 Boston Marathon Bombings
The author describes the historical context for FIRESCOPE (FIrefighting REsources of
Southern California Organized for Potential Emergencies) and the resulting Incident Command
System (ICS) for managing disasters and planned events with emergencies. FIRESCOPE was a
congressionally funded project to strengthen fire command and control during a fire-fighting
event in response to a devastating series of wildland fires in California in 1970. It produced an
incident command system for managing events by effective coordination and training of multiple
agencies by using shared standard terminology, common organizational structure and
communication systems. More than forty years later, an expanded ICS is central to the U.S.
National Incident Management System (NIMS). FEMA training about ICS emphasizes 14
essential features: common terminology; modular organization; management by objectives;
reliance on an incident action plan; chain of command and unity of command; unified
command; manageable span of control; predesigned incident location and facilities; resource
management; information and intelligence management; integrated communications; transfer of
command; accountability; and deployment. The author uses the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing
as an example of how the planners of the Boston Marathon effectively used ICS to save lives and
restore order after the bombing.
FIRESCOPE, Incident Command System, and the 2013 Boston Marathon Bombings
Before the 1960s firefighting was mostly a ground operation. One fire management
veteran stated, “everything had to do with hiking and trucks.” (National Interagency Fire Center
Staff, 2013). In the 1960s the Bureau of Land Management and US Forest Service combined
efforts and next involved the National Weather Service to develop their ability to forecast
weather at risk for fires. By the 1970s, their fire-fighting consortium further expanded to include
the National Park Service, the Department of the Interior’s new Office of Aircraft Services, the
Bureau of Indian Affairs, and the US Fish and Wildlife Service. The Fire consortium was
renamed the National Interagency Fire Center (National Interagency Fire Center Staff, 2013),
and the Bureau of Land Management still serves as the host agency and main employer. These
federal agencies also coordinated efforts with state and local firefighters. In the 1970s leaders
recognized that the success of interagency fire response required consistent and universal
training. They standardized courses in fire safety for their firefighters on all levels.
In September – October of 1970 the worst-ever fire disaster in California lasted 13 days,
consisting of 773 individual wildfires that destroyed 722 homes, burned almost 600,000 acres of
land across the state of California, killed 16 people, and injured many others.
During initial debriefings of the disaster, analysts discerned that the problems with the
response were not related to insufficient resources or failed tactics. Rather leaders had difficulty
controlling and coordinating the thousands of firefighters and other emergency responders, many
from neighboring mutual aid compacts. Some resources were not effectively used and others
were exhausted. Air and ground forces were active but not coordinated. Analysts noted a lack of
common organization; poor on-scene and interagency communication (with the various agencies
using different radio frequencies, different terminology, and different organizational structures);
FIRESCOPE, Incident Command System, and the 2013 Boston Marathon Bombings
inadequate joint planning; a lack of valid and timely intelligence; inadequate resource
management; and limited prediction capability (Rowley, 2007, p. 7).
The United States 92nd Congress appropriated $900,000 to strengthen fire command and
control systems by funding a project called FIrefighting REsources of Southern California
Organized for Potential Emergencies (FIRESCOPE). The FIRESCOPE partner agencies
identified five individual…
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