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California OES, Essay Example

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Words: 891

Essay

California’s Office of Emergency Services (OES) provides references, resources, and aid to many local law enforcement agencies. An important factor in any type of emergency situation is preparedness. Whereas no law enforcement agency or Federal Government branch can truly be prepared for some of the tragedies America have faced in the past decade, it is important to know what options and advocates are available if and when an emergency happens.

One issue that California OES has to address is Tsunamis. California has their local plan in place, but no matter how prepared they are, in the event of a disaster of that magnitude, they will be dependent on the Federal Government to offer assistance. The Department of Commerce deals with organizations such as National Tsunami Hazard Mitigation Program (NTHMP), NOAA Administrator, and Federal Emergency Management Agency to aid in tsunami help and preparation. “The tsunami and emergency response communities that technology alone, automated warnings that can take up to 15 to 20 minutes to issue, cannot protect coastal inhabitants located in the immediate area of a near-source tsunami.” (State of California 2007) The Federal Government along with California OES is addressing the issue of false alarms as well as notifications. Having enough time to evacuate the affected areas has been, and potentially still is an issue. Determining how long it would take for evacuation will allow them to streamline the process and make it happen in the shortest period of time. Also, resources used to study advanced warning systems will allow more necessary time for evacuations.

After the tragic events of 9/11 and the chaos that surround it, California OES and the Federal Government have been working on being prepared for the potential terrorist attacks. Part of the issue that we all witnessed first-hand was that America was not expecting planes to fly into the twin towers and the loss of life that happened as a resulted. It is going to be an ongoing issue for both California OES and the Federal Government to ever really be prepared for such unexpected events. The FBI has issued the warning about potential attacks on bridges, which turned out to be non-credible. However as prevention, the highway patrol has been trained to provide security and surveillance. Heightened airline securities since 9/11, from both Federal Agencies and California’s OES, has been a beneficial tool to prevent history from repeating itself. The heightened security and training that has taken place makes it extremely hard for a terrorist act to take place in the air again. The State of California’s mail handling and the potential anthrax threats have provided the Office of Emergency Services and the Federal Government time to implement procedures and to be prepared. The list can go on and on of the potential means that terrorist will use to attack the United States. The biggest issue it that there are no policies or procedures that can be used if there is no way to know the means of attack. Response time will be longer training will be nonexistent and prevention may not be an option. This issue may never be solved, but the Federal Government along with California’s OES, can be better prepared to address terrorist acts and their response to the unexpected.

Finally, California’s Office of Emergency Services addresses the issue of earthquakes. “Earthquakes can occur everywhere in California which means all Californians live with an earthquake risk. “ (CalEMA) As a result, landslides, property damage and surface defaults are just a few issues that California’s OES has to address. The National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP) directs the Federal Government to limit the number of deaths, injuries, and damaged properties that are typically associated with earthquakes. NEHRP oversees the four major agencies involved in earthquake related emergencies; they are FEMA, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and the National Science Foundation (NSF). The National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program works directly with California’s OES to develop techniques, tools, and strategies to reduce the adverse reaction that results from an earthquake. An issue with both the National Earthquake Hazard Reduction Program and California’s OES is that, with all their efforts, there has been little progress made towards their goals and prevention attempts. Knowing that a State sits in an earthquake risk zone, research has not shown that any type of drastic efforts has been put into preventative measures. The Federal, State and local law enforcement agencies have an extensive program and resource available in the event they face an earthquake. However, the issue still at hand is, if they have done all this research and determined ways to limit the devastation that happens as a result of a natural disaster, there needs to be a urgency to implement it.

California’s OES has tremendous resources available to them, both locally and in the Federal level. They have plans of actions, resources, and support in the event an emergency should happen in their territory. Addressing the potential issues and finding a solution to rectify problem will prevent unnecessary damage and even life loss. No Federal, State, or Local agency can ever be completely prepared for emergencies, but finding solutions for the bigger issues will help everyone involved in the situation.

References

State of California. (2007) Local Planning Guidance on Tsunami Response.  Retrieved from:http://www.oes.ca.gov/Operational/OESHome.nsf/0/a35c3922bac2bde988256f83006c71c9?OpenDocument&Highlight=0,tsunami

CalEMA – Planning, Protection and Preparedness – Earthquake and Tsunamis. Retrieved from: http://cms.calema.ca.gov/prep_earthquake.aspx

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