On Tues., Oct. 21, 2013, Governor Abercrombie and about 60 other key State, County, Federal, business and community leaders participated in a Homeland Security Executive Education Seminar that was given by the Naval Postgraduate School Center for Homeland Defense and Security.
The Department of Homeland Security and the Naval Postgraduate School developed this Executive Education Program to assist state and local executive leaders to consider the context in which they place homeland security and emergency activities, to have an open and informed dialogue about these activities, and to strengthen capacity to respond to and recover from major and catastrophic disasters in a partnership with other government and the private sector. The dialog was great in helping the attendees understand the effects of executive decisions and explore the factors for consideration during disaster conditions.
This seminar was part of the 2013 Hawaii Emergency Preparedness & Homeland Security Workshop conducted over the course of two and one half days at the Hawaii Convention Center. Department of Hawaiian Home Lands (DHHL) Deputy Darrell Young, Information and Community Relations Officer Punialoha Chee, and members of the DHHL Enforcement Team participated in this workshop and heard from experts during several planning sessions regarding the topics of Mass Care / Vulnerable Populations; Community Resiliency, and; Cyber Security.
The main message conveyed is for everyone to be prepared and to have at least 7 days of supplies to care for yourself and your family members. Government can be there to assist in recovery and resiliency following a disaster, but the greatest impact and success for personal safety is what you do for your emergency preparedness and response efforts.
Here are some planning tips from the State Civil Defense Website:
Preparing For Disaster
Being prepared for disaster is important. When disaster strikes, you may not have ample time to respond and ensure the resources you and your family need to survive are available. Moreover, hundreds of other families in your area share the same concerns, and it will be difficult to get access to the necessities you need due to shortages and competition. Do not wait until the last minute and get caught in this situation. Disaster-time civilian response requires sound decision-making and action to save the lives of families and friends.
When determining your emergency needs, plan for the long haul. In any major disaster scenario, it may take 72 hours or more for emergency personnel to reach you. Emergency preparedness kits should contain the essentials your family needs to survive during a disaster. Having two is ideal; a multi-purpose kit that with provisions for more activities for the home, and a transportable slimmed down kit with bare necessities for survival when on the go. Any preparations should be accompanied by an emergency plan. Know where your family is and how to keep in contact in the event of a disaster. Most of all keep informed. Find out what disasters you may be affected by and plan accordingly. Determine and manage your emergency needs as required.
Additionally, your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so it is important to plan in advance: how you will contact one another; how you will get back together; and what you will do in different situations.
For more info about how to put together your own emergency preparedness kit, check out this link to the State Civil Defense website – http://www.scd.hawaii.gov/dp_kit.html
If Disaster Strikes
If you are instructed to take shelter immediately, do so at once.
If you are instructed to evacuate:
- Listen to the radio or television for the location of emergency shelters and for other instructions from local emergency officials.
- Wear protective clothing and sturdy shoes.
- Take your disaster supplies kit.
- Use travel routes specified by local authorities and don’t use shortcuts because certain areas may be impassable or dangerous.
Department of Civil Defense Division, State of Hawaii
3949 Diamond Head Road
Honolulu, HI 96816
City and County of Honolulu Department of Emergency Management
650 South King Street
Honolulu, HI 96813
Kauai County Civil Defense Agency
Suite 100, 3990 Kaana Street
Lihue, Hawaii, 96766
Maui County Civil Defense Agency
200 South High Street
Wailuku, HI 96793-2155
Hawaii County Civil Defense Agency
920 Ululani St.
Hilo, HI 96720
(808) 935-0031, (808) 935-3311 (after hours)