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Tornadoes - Failures of Leadership - Case Study Example

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Case Study – June 1, 2011 Tornadoes – Failure of Leadership (Name) (Institution) (Professor) (Course) (Date) Case Study – June 1, 2011 Tornadoes – Failure of Leadership Tornadoes of June 1, 2011 resulted in excessive damage as it roared through central and western Massachusetts…
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Tornadoes - Failures of Leadership
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Download file to see previous pages There were 1000 deaths as a result of weather related calamities and 550 of those were a result of tornadoes (IEMA, 2012). While severe weather cannot be prevented, there is much that can be done with respect to being prepared and taking action to safeguard the public. The tornadoes of June 1, 2011 showed the lack of preparedness and failure of leadership at various levels. There had been many tornadoes which had had devastating effects on more than 6 states including New York, Oklahoma, Alabama and Georgia prior to June 1, 2011. There were gaps and failures witnessed in emergency preparedness systems in the prior tornadoes and still the June 1 tornadoes were no different (Smilowitz, 2011). This case study focuses on the June 1 tornadoes where in most of the communities struggled from miscommunication and chaos. This case study highlights the failure of leadership at numerous levels and lack of preparedness during the June 1 Tornadoes. It also makes various suggestions to overcome these failures. There were numerous areas where leadership was found wanting. There were communication issues between emergency responders and government officials and the collective communication system, of emergency responders and government officials, with citizens. The emergency personnel lacked the training and preparedness to handle a catastrophe of such nature and magnitude. The lack of preparedness of the emergency management was best put forward by Monson's Emergency Management Director, Evan Brassard when he said: “I think that emergency management had been on the back burner because it had been so long since a response of that nature was needed”. (Meiler & Russo, 2012) This statement clearly summarises the state of the emergency management program. The emergency management teams in place were unprepared for such an event. Emergency management teams and personnel need to train for such an event in foresight so that they can respond in the best possible way and not wait for the need for such a response to arise in order to prepare. The following paragraphs will identify various aspects of emergency management that failed during the June 1 tornadoes. The first and foremost reaction or response to such a disaster is search and rescue. The responders at ground zero who are the most effective and the first to respond to a disaster did not have proper information that defined their capabilities and roles. These local responder teams consisted of numerous specialists who are experts in their own fields but lack the understanding of their role in the search and rescue team. Secondly, there was no proper co-ordination between the different teams. The inspection markings on structures were not consistent with different teams. Each team used its own structural marking systems that indicated the condition of the structure and its habitability. This lead to a lot of confusion as there were numerous agencies and teams working at once and each of them had their own marking system (WRHSAC, 2012). This could have been overcome if the leaders had taken initiative and be prepared for the situation. In future, this can be avoided by ensuring that the team members are briefed prior to the disaster about their capabilities and roles in search and rescue teams. Also a unified marking system must be put in place and ensured that all agencies and teams taking part are familiar with the unified system. Tornadoes of June 1 were not a single region event but a multi-regional and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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