Four Phases of Comprehensive Emergency Management
Comprehensive emergency management refers to the preparation for and performing of all emergency functions, apart from functions which the military forces are mainly accountable for; to mitigate, prepare for, respond to, and recover from emergencies. It deals with daily interruptions, responding to them, and recovery from key disasters.The four phases of comprehensive emergency management include mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery (Cheltenham Township, 2016). These phases are usually illustrated in a circle like pattern, indicating that it is cyclical in nature. Disasters are usually prepared before their occurrence to ensure safety. When a disaster takes place, a society must respond to that specific event and soon start recovery.Even when a community is still recovering from a disaster, it must start the process of mitigating the effects of another disaster.
Mitigation refers to persistent action that lessens the lasting risk from natural hazards to belongings and individuals and their effects. It is the continuing attempt to lessen the effect of disasters on property and people. It entails activities like preventing construction in high-risk areas, earthquakes, flooding, and engineering buildings to evade wind. This phase can either be non-structural or structural. Structural measures utilize technological solutions for instance; flood levees (Wyss & Shroder, 2014). However, non-structural mitigation entails insurance, land-use planning, and legislation. It is a less expensive measure of reducing the outcomes of hazards though not suitable. Mitigation helps in ensuring that lesscommunities and individuals become victims of these natural disasters in order to avoid massive destruction of property and loss of lives. It may take various forms for instance; elevating or relocating structures from floodplains, purchasing flood insurance to protect individual property, promoting proper land use planning depending on recognized hazards.
Preparedness is defined as the procedure and plans aimed at saving lives and reducing damage during times of emergencies. It is an endless cycle that entails planning, equipping, training, organizing, implementation, and improving activities in order to promote effective coordination and enhance the ability to avoid, protect against, respond, recover from, and lessen the impacts of natural disasters in societies. All these activities are aimed at offering the best solution when a disaster occurs. In this phase, emergency managers come up with plans to handle their risks and act on building the required to come up with such plans. Popular preparedness measures are appropriate training and maintenance of emergency services, preparing evacuation and shelter plans among others.
Responseentails mobilizing essential emergency services in a disaster region. It mostly involves a first wave of major emergency services like ambulance crews, police, and firefighters (Beach, 2010). Response activities may involve giving shelter to the victims, search and seizure, firefighting, and damage assessment.
Recovery refers to the necessary actions undertaken after the effects of the disaster have passed to steady community and restore them to their normal position. Even though individuals in the United States have a perception that the federal government steps in to restore everything after a disaster has occurred, the fact is that the assistance from the federal government enables the jurisdiction and residents to create basic functionality as the key for life after the disaster. Typical recovery actions entail monetary help to individuals and governments, cleanup of disaster debris, reconstruction of bridges and roads and major facilities, continued mass care for displaced animal and human populations, and pastoral and mental health care.
Cheltenham Township. (2016).4 phases of emergency management. Cheltenhamtownship.org. Retrieved on 5 April 2016, from, http://www.cheltenhamtownship.org/pView.aspx?id=4161&catid=29
Wyss, M., & Shroder, J. F. (2014). Earthquake Hazard, Risk and Disasters. Burlington: Elsevier Science.
Beach, M. (2010). Disaster preparedness and management. Philadelphia, PA: F.A. Davis Co.