DRILL: A Drill is a coordinated and supervised exercise activity normally used to test one specific operation or activity. Drills involve an actual response to a simulated situation where responses should be as realistic as possible. One of the simplest and most common examples is a Fire Drill or Evacuation Drill.
TABLETOP EXERCISE: A Tabletop Exercise involves a mostly simulated or talked-through response to a given emergency situation or scenario. Tabletops normally focus on planning, coordination, decision-making, and plan implementation activities. No actual field responses take place and many other response elements may be simulated so the exercise time-line can be compressed and/or expanded significantly from what a “real-life” response would require. In general, Tabletops involve fairly low-stress, low-realism scenarios, but that can vary depending on the exercise objectives. The exercise designers and facilitator can build in challenging time constraints if so desired and maps, charts, and interjected problem messages can help add realism to the scenario.
FUNCTIONAL EXERCISE: A Functional Exercise involves a largely realistic response to a time-pressured, realistic emergency situation or scenario. No actual field responses take place but non-field activities are handled as realistically as possible. Participants (Players) are forced to respond in real-time with on-the-spot decisions to realistic messages and problems routinely interjected by Controllers and Simulators. Functional Exercises can be quite complex, making them very realistic and stressful for the Players but also making them difficult to design and conduct.
FULL SCALE EXERCISE: A Full Scale Exercise simulates a real event as closely as possible. In conjunction with the procedural and decision-making elements addressed in Tabletops and Functional Exercises, the Full Scale also tests and evaluates a system’s operational capabilities in a stressful environment that simulates actual response conditions as closely as possible. To achieve this realistic operational evaluation requires the actual mobilization and response of personnel, equipment, and resources. Full Scale Exercises can be extremely complex to design and conduct and they require a high level of organizational commitment due to the number of personnel and amount of time involved in conducting and/or participating in such an exercise. They can however be the ultimate “safe” test – the next best thing to the real event. Full Scale Exercises can find discrepancies in planning and in operational capabilities that would not have been identified otherwise, short of a real event.
FEMA State and Local Guide 101 – Guide for All-Hazard Emergency Operations Planning
FEMA Emergency Management Guide for Business & Industry
United States Federal Response Plan (FRP)
South Carolina Emergency Operations Plan (SCEOP)
Horry County Emergency Operations Plan (EOP)
Horry County Regional Hazard Mitigation Plan
National Incident Management System (NIMS)
U.S. Coast Guard Incident Command System Field Operations Guide ICS-OS-420-1
American Water Works Association (AWWA) Emergency Planning for Water Utilities M19
AWWA Water System Security: A Field Guide
EPA Emergency Response Plan Guidance for Small and Medium Community Water
Systems to Comply with the Public Health Security and Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002
AWARE: ALL affected departments and designated support personnel
For the purposes of this ISF, Direction & Control refers to an organized and systematic approach employed prior to and during emergency situations which assigns specific areas of responsibilities, creates specific levels of authority, and designates very clear lines of communication. This system GSWSA utilizes is the National Incident Management System (NIMS) and one of the major components of this approach is the Incident Command System (ICS).
While it generally makes sense to assign duties and responsibilities during an emergency incident to the same person or department that handles those responsibilities day-in and day-out, it’s important to understand this may not always be the case. Utilizing NIMS and ICS during an emergency incident, employees may find themselves assigned to tasks they don’t normally perform and may report to a different “supervisor” for the duration of that emergency assignment.
To minimize confusion and maximize efficiency and effectiveness, considerable thought and effort has been put into pre-defining and pre-assigning foreseeable emergency duties and responsibilities. That is the primary purpose for the Incident Support Functions (ISFs) utilized in this plan.
For a detailed explanation of NIMS and ICS, refer to WWW.FEMA.GOV/NIMS.
To develop and implement an organized and systematic approach to all emergency management activities and operations.
To assign specific duties and responsibilities and to create specific lines of communication and chains-of-command for persons involved with emergency management activities and operations.
The ICS provides for an orderly and organized Incident MANAGEMENT System, and is designed to be used for all kinds of emergencies. In the simplest sense, it is a system which assigns specific areas of responsibility, creates specific levels of authority, and designates very clear lines of communication. It is applicable to both small day-to-day situations as well as very large and complex incidents. The more complex the incident, the larger and more complex the ICS structure will be. However, use only the elements of the ICS that are needed and are applicable to each particular incident. Start small and build on the ICS structure as additional needs arise. The ICS consists of a number of key components that work together interactively to provide the basis for an effective operation, including:
unity of command
Common Terminology: The ICS provides for single and/or multi-agency involvement through common elements of organization, terminology, and procedures. Any and all agencies that become involved in a particular incident will have compatible systems and will be able to work together effectively.
Modular Organization: The organizational structure is able to adapt to any emergency or incident to which the agency could be expected to respond. The ICS organizational structure expands in a logical and modular fashion based upon the size and type of incident. The organization’s staff builds from the top down with responsibility and performance placed initially with the Incident Commander. As the need exists or develops, four separate sections can be created (if necessary) - each with numerous sub-units, which may be established (if necessary). The organizational structure for any given incident should be based upon the management needs of that incident. Start with the smallest ICS structure that meets the needs at that particular time and add elements / positions as they become necessary. It is important to understand that while numerous ICS positions are defined, not all of them will be needed at every incident. It is also possible, and often effective, for one person to fill more than one position, especially at smaller, fewer complex incidents. If one individual can manage all major function within an area, no further organization is required
Unity of Command: The ICS provides for a clear chain-of-command up and down the structure with each person having one designated “supervisor”. It is imperative that the chain-of-command be observed in relaying and requesting information or instructions.
Manageable Span-of-Control: Span-of-control refers to the number of personnel any one position directly supervises. In general, within the ICS, the span-of-control of any individual should range from three to seven, with five as a general rule of thumb. Of course, there will always be exceptions and the kind of incident, the nature of the tasks, and the hazards and safety factors will all influence span-of-control considerations
If the scene of the emergency is localized to a relatively small area, and the event will be relatively short term, a Field Command Post may be the most effective means of directing activities at the scene. Designated as the CP, the Command Post will be the field location from which small or localized incident operations will normally be directed.
Once a Command Post is established, the Incident Commander (IC) shall remain at the Command Post. If the IC must leave the Command Post for any reason, a Deputy IC should be designated and assigned to take over operations at the Command Post. (This provision holds true for the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) as well.) The Command Staff positions will be working out of, though not necessarily remaining at, the Command Post. Other managers, supervisors, and key personnel needed in the planning and decision-making process may also be requested to remain at the Command Post.
In addition to Command Staff personnel, additional staff may be assigned to the Command Post as needed.
EMERGENCY OPERATIONS CENTER (EOC)
At the IC’s discretion, an Emergency Operations Center may be established in addition to - or instead of a field Command Post. This decision is based upon the size, severity, and complexity of the incident. If a field Command Post is not established, the IC will be located at the EOC and will direct activities from there. In most cases, the EOC shall be established at GSWSA’s Operations Center, 170 Jackson Bluff Road. (843-443-8200)
If the Operations Center is threatened or damaged by the emergency conditions, the Alternate EOC shall be established at the Control Room at either the Schwartz Wastewater or Bull Creek Water Treatment Plants as appropriate.
Safety Manager shall coordinate and direct implementation and operation of the GSWSA EOC and shall provide guidance to the Incident Commander regarding the appropriate level and complexity of EOC operations based upon the needs of the incident.
FIVE FUNCTIONS OF ICS
Command: Responsible for coordinating, directing, and controlling (managing) overall operations and activities.
Operations: Responsible for tactical, or hands-on, activities of the operation.
Planning & Logistics: Responsible for gathering, analyzing, and disseminating information and providing supplies and support services
Finance: Responsible for handling and tracking incident financial matters.
Engineering: Responsible for supporting the Operations section with assessment and recovery efforts and coordination with other utilities.
For examples of how ICS may be implemented by GSWSA, refer to Section 1.10 of the Basic Plan, Emergency Organizational Structures.
For a thorough and detailed explanation of ICS, refer to WWW.FEMA.GOV/NIMS.
Preparedness / Mitigation
Ensure all primary and support personnel are familiar with their duties and responsibilities under this plan.
Ensure appropriate policies, plans, and procedures are in place and up to date.
Ensure the necessary resources are allocated for appropriate mitigation, planning, and preparation activities.
Ensure adequate support for, and participation in, emergency management training, drills, and exercises.
Implement an appropriate ICS organization, assigning functions and responsibilities as required by the incident. (Safety Manager shall provide guidance and recommendations regarding the appropriate level and complexity of ICS implementation, based upon the needs of the incident.)
Assess the size, severity, and complexity of the incident.
Activate and assign appropriate Incident Support Functions (ISFs).
Establish incident priorities and develop overall response strategies.
Develop an Incident Action Plan (IAP), to ensure all response operations and activities are organized and coordinated.
Use the ICS Forms included in Appendix 19 to assist with IAP development.
Allocate the necessary resources to support safe and effective operations.
Coordinate and manage overall activities and operations.
Develop and publish a schedule of routine Status Briefings, typically 2 per day.
Work through established lines of communications and chain-of-command.
Continue the Direction & Control function as required by the incident.
Develop and publish a schedule of routine Status Briefings, typically 2 per day initially, and 1 per day as operations become more “routine.”
Develop and implement “Stand-Down” plans as appropriate.
Within 10 days of any actual incident, drill, or exercise – review and critique applicable areas of performance and associated plans & procedures. Notify Safety Manager of any necessary updates or revisions to any part of GSWSA’s Emergency Management Plans.
Human Resources PRIMARY: Human Resources
For the purposes of this ISF, Human Resources refers to maintaining a general database of contact information for personnel.
To provide emergency operations staff updated contact information for all personnel.
CONCEPT of OPERATIONS
The Human Resources Manager has overall responsibility for HR functions.
Preparedness / Mitigation Ensure all primary and support personnel are familiar with their duties and responsibilities under this plan.
Coordinate with potential support departments, to pre-plan tentative roles and responsibilities.
Maintain a current and confidential database of emergency contact information for every GSWSA employee, including names, numbers, addresses, etc.
Serve as the central clearinghouse for information regarding employees that have evacuated the area due to a major event; where they are, how to contact them, when they are expected to return, etc.
Obtain briefing and receive instructions from Incident Commander.
Continue HR functions as required by the incident.
Follow-Up Within 10 days of any actual incident, drill, or exercise – review and critique applicable areas of performance and associated plans & procedures. Notify Safety Manager of any necessary updates or revisions to any part of GSWSA’s Emergency Management Plans.
SUPPORT: Customer Services
AWARE: Senior Staff
For the purposes of this ISF, Emergency Communications refers to an organized, controlled, and consistent means of communicating information relative to an emergency situation, to all those with a need to know, both internally and externally.
To ensure accurate and consistent information is communicated to all those with a need to know. The specific objectives of this function include the following:
To ensure factual and current information is provided, in a controlled and organized manner, to the media, the public, and other outside agencies, groups, or personnel that a need to be informed.
To ensure adequate personnel and procedures are in place to handle incoming telephone calls, and that these individuals are provided current, accurate, and consistent information to work from.
To ensure factual and current information is provided, in a controlled and organized manner, to all GSWSA employees.
CONCEPT of OPERATIONS
The Emergency Communications Plan may be activated and implemented by the CEO.
Emergency Communications will normally be activated whenever there is an event that causes activation of the Incident Command System.
The CEO will coordinate all activities within the scope of the Emergency Communications Plan.
The CEO will coordinate and oversee the development and creation of all printed information such as Press Releases, Fact Sheets, Notices and Bulletins. The CEO will also coordinate the dissemination of up-to-date and approved information to telephone operators, radio dispatchers, department heads / supervisors, and affected employees.
The CEO will fill the role of Spokesperson, or may choose to appoint another qualified person to serve as Spokesperson. The designated Spokesperson will conduct all Press Briefings, on-air / on-camera interviews, telephone interviews, etc., for and with the media.
The CEO or Incident Commander must approve and authorize all information prior to release or dissemination.
All inquiries or requests from the media will be forwarded to the CEO or his designee.
Any employee approached or questioned by the media shall politely refer them to the CEO.
For additional detailed information, specific responsibilities, assignments, and activities within this function, refer to Emergency Communications Plan in Appendix 13 of this plan.
Employee Wellbeing PRIMARY: Human Resource
For the purposes of this ISF, Employee Wellbeing refers to food, drink, and rest for employees, to prepare them for another period of work activity.
The primary element of Employee Wellbeing addressed by this function is food and drink. When this function is activated for an incident requiring extended hours and/or varied work schedules, food and drink for employees shall be planned and provided through ISF-4.
The secondary element of Employee Wellbeing addressed by this function is sleeping arrangements. When necessary, ISF-4 shall plan and coordinate the sleeping arrangements for ICS staff and emergency personnel remaining at the EOC (or other designated location) for extended periods.