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Shelter or Evacuate? Alan Goodwin Deputy Chief Constable ACPO Emergency Procedures Committee. Introduction. Risk Based Planning – National/Regional/Local Civil Contingencies Act 2004 Duty to produce Community Risk Register Duty to plan and exercise accordingly
Shelter or Evacuate? Alan Goodwin Deputy Chief Constable ACPO Emergency Procedures Committee
Introduction • Risk Based Planning – National/Regional/Local • Civil Contingencies Act 2004 • Duty to produce Community Risk Register • Duty to plan and exercise accordingly • Shelter and Evacuation as options • Generic considerations • No Case Studies – valuable to workshop discussions
National Risk Assessment • “Mass” Evacuation • National advice or decision making involved • Highly unlikely due to risks involved • Large Scale Evacuation • Regional/National support may be needed • E.g. Flooding, Transport/Utilities failure, industrial accidents, acts of terrorism.
Local Planning • Much already in place • COMAH, Sports venues, City/Town Centres • Scaleable Flexibility • Generic planning capable of scaling up/down • Quality Assurance • Interdependencies, conflicts, integration with neighbouring areas • Planning & Exercising regime
Purpose of Evacuation • “To move people and, where appropriate, other living creatures away from an actual or potential danger to a safer place.”(CCS Draft Guidance unpublished) • Always the preferred option?
Shelter or Evacuate? • Often better to shelter in buildings in response to events. • Challenges of Shelter • Supporting dependent people in their homes. • Maintenance of key services. • Potential for spontaneous self-evacuation. • Rational people doing irrational things. • Decision for Gold Commander based on prevailing circumstances. Dynamic Risk Assessment.
Shelter or Evacuate? • Evacuation requires a well co-ordinated multi agency response. • People require to leave their homes must be supported and reassured. • Considerations: • Where are they going to? • How will we get them there? • How long will they be there for? • How will they and their homes be protected? • How will we communicate with them and others affected by the evacuation? • Plan before the Decision!
Planning Considerations (1) • Logistics • are the necessary resources available to deliver the plan? (e.g. are individual elements predicated upon the same police resources?) • Is there a reliance on military MACA? Is it realistic? • Infrastructure • Is the necessary transport infrastructure still in place? • Are key communications channels still available? • People and Places • Vulnerable people in communities • High risk premises – hospitals, prisons, schools.
Planning Considerations (2) • Command & Control Arrangements • Strategic Coordinating Group (“Gold”) • Role of Regional Government Office • Central Government arrangements (CONOPS) • Mutual Aid Arrangements • Police - PNICC activation • Local Authorities - reciprocal resource sharing • Role of Voluntary Sector • Transportation • Assistance at rest centres • Social and welfare support • Media Strategy • Key Messages • Access to evacuees
Legal Considerations • Compulsory Evacuation? • No Police Powers to order evacuation • CC Act Emergency Powers? Unlikely (e.g. Triton) • US experience – mandatory evacuation problematic • Effective & persuasive media strategies essential. • Local Authority Housing Duty? • Displaced people but for how long? • Relationship with outsourced housing providers? • Animal Welfare? • Legislation relating to livestock, zoos and pets. • How DO we evacuate a family of giraffes?
Warning & Informing • Communication Strategies • Any decision to shelter or evacuate must be underpinned by a robust communication strategy. • People need to know what they need to do. • Duty under CC Act 2004 • Local responders must have arrangements in place to warn and inform the public in times of emergency. • Utilise Regional Media Emergency Forum. Links to Government News Network. • Consider mirroring RMEF at Local level. • Exercise communication plans in their own right. • Role of Gold Command • Early delivery of communications strategy when considering shelter or evacuation. www.preparingforemergencies.gov.uk
Conclusion • Cabinet Office Evacuation Guidance • Conferences/Booklets now • Guidance/Policy issues early Summer • Will incorporate issues discussed today BUT • Evacuation or Shelter is a Command Decision • Part of contingency planning wherever possible • Requires dynamic risk assessment as events unfold. • Consider short and long term impact of decisions.