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Greensboro Tornado

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  1. Greensboro Tornado April 15, 2018 Guilford County Emergency Management NCEMA Fall Conference

  2. Situational Awareness • 1st Notification on April 9 from our contract meteorologist • Raleigh NWS briefings started April 13 • Weekend of the High Point Furniture Market with large outdoor concerts • Morning of April 15 – notes from our contractor confirmed a concern for Guilford • Message sent to partners and social media • Local WebEOC incident created • Tornado Watch issued at 3:04 • Thunderstorm Warning issued at 4:35pm • Tornado Warning issued at 5:07pm

  3. Initial Actions • 9-1-1 Calls received as early as 5:05pm • Tornado Warning at 5:07pm • EOC Activation at 5:24pm • State of Emergency at 8:13pm • First Press Conference at 10pm • 22,742 Public Notifications Sent through Everbridge • 5,789 Partner Notifications Sent through Everbridge • Search and Rescue Coordination by Fire and EMS • 9-1-1- System Overwhelmed (rolled over to High Point and Davidson County)

  4. Event Statistics • Number Buildings: 1,022 • Single Family: 926 • Multi-Family: 52 • Commercial: 26 • Other: 11 • Damage Path: 16 Miles • 1 Fatality • Damage Estimate: 33 Million • 95% within the City of Greensboro • Shelter opened that night through Friday

  5. Response Overview • Interagency Coordination and use of ICS / NIMS Concepts • Emergency Operations Center Activation • Initial 24 hours were focused on life safety • Stakeholder collaboration was key • Damage assessment coordination • Heavy use of ATVs and walking • Damage Assessment Coordination

  6. Scene Security Challenges • Power Lines Down • 16 Miles of Damage • Dense Urban Street Design • Multi-Family Units • Strong Community

  7. Shelter Operations • Initial Shelter opened Sunday Evening within 2 hours of the Tornado • Low turnout on night 1 and 2 • Moved the shelter closer to the disaster area on Tuesday • Shelter population increased to over 50

  8. Community Support

  9. School System Impacts

  10. School System Impacts • All Schools Closed Monday and Tuesday • School Meals Available Each Day • Most Schools Resumed Wednesday • 3 Schools Relocated for Remainder of the School Year • Schools were Insured – Public Assistance Thresholds Not Met • Long Term Impacts…

  11. GCEM Staffing • Director • Operations Coordinator • Planning Coordinator (Internal) • Planning Coordinator (External) • Chemical Planner • EM Technician (Part Time)

  12. Semper Gumby

  13. Always Flexible

  14. Lessons Learned… • Its all about the team • Put the Needs of Survivors First • Connect Agencies and Step Away • Document True Information – Information is Currency • Stay out of Politics • Take All Feedback, Good or Bad and Document! • Stay Flexible • Stay strategic and done get caught up in other peoples drama • Humor is Required

  15. Long Term Lessons Learned • Its all about having a foundation but being flexible • Pick your battles early • External pressures – Stick with what you know • Lean on your friends and neighbors • We staff for blue sky, not dark sky

  16. Questions? Don Campbell Guilford County Emergency Management 336-641-2278 Don.Campbell@Guilford-ES.Com