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Guidelines for Transportation Emergency Training Exercises highlights existing federal regulations, recommendations, and programs to support transportation exercises. Section 2 introduces the concept of a progressive exercise program and highlights new and emerg- ing programs sponsored by FEMA and the G&T. This section also provides an overview of the seven different types of exercises that make up a progressive exercise program. Section 3 illustrates how a progressive exercise program can be established in the transportation environment and provides information on program costs and grant funding opportunities. Section 4 describes how an agency can plan, design, conduct, and evaluate discussion-based exer- cises that will help improve the agency's ability to respond to transportation emergencies. This section includes references to forms and templates that can be used by a transportation agency to address specific needs. Section 5 outlines and describes how an agency can plan, design, conduct, and evaluate operations- based exercises that will help improve the agency's ability to respond to transportation emergencies. This section includes references to forms and templates that can be used by a transportation agency to address specific needs. Appendixes to the guidelines include an abbreviation list (Appendix A), a glossary of terms (Appen- dix B), a detailed bibliography with URLs to locate materials on the Internet (Appendix C), and a list of training and exercise websites for additional information (Appendix D). Attachments to the guidelines include Information on the NRP and NIMS and how they affect transportation agencies (Attachment 1); A transportation exercise evaluation guide in compliance with DHS recommendations (Attach- ment 2); A template for performing a needs assessment to direct exercise programs (Attachment 3); A set of exercise design objectives (Attachment 4); A set of materials to support exercise development, implementation, and evaluation (Attach- ment 5); and A set of materials that support the development of transportation incident response typologies for use in developing emergency exercises (Attachment 6). WHY CONDUCT EXERCISES? Transportation agencies are vulnerable to a range of events that may result in emergencies. Table 1 illustrates some of the most likely of these events, organized into categories of human-caused events (both intentional and unintentional) and naturally occurring events. An exercise is a focused practice activity that places the participants in a simulated situation that requires them to function in the capacity that would be expected of them in a real event. A good, well-evaluated exer- cise reveals inconsistencies in plans, highlights deficiencies in resources, and underscores any need for additional training. Going directly into a real emergency operation without practicing in exercises involves substantial risks. For example, many participants may not know or thoroughly understand what their emergency respon- sibilities are or how these responsibilities relate to activities performed for other elements of the response. Equipment may not function as expected, and procedures may not be as effective as 3
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Guidelines for Transportation Emergency Training Exercises TABLE 1 EMERGENCY EVENTS AFFECTING TRANSPORTATION AGENCIES Human-Caused Naturally Occurring Intentional Unintentional Droughts Bomb Threats and Other Accidental Contamination or Dust/Wind Storms Threats of Violence Hazardous Materials Spills Earthquakes Disruption of Supply Sources Accidental Damage to or Electrical Storms Fire/Arson Destruction of Physical Plant Floods Fraud/Embezzlement and Assets High Winds Labor Disputes/Strikes Accidents That Affect the Hurricanes Misuse of Resources Transportation System Ice Storms Riot/Civil Disorder Gas Outages Landslides Sabotage: External and Human Errors Naturally Occurring Internal Actors HVAC System Failures or Epidemics Security Breaches Malfunctions Snowstorms and Terrorist Assaults Using Inappropriate Training on Blizzards Chemical, Biological, Emergency Procedures Tornadoes Radiological, or Nuclear Power Outages Tropical Storms Agents Software/Hardware Failures Tsunamis Terrorist Assaults Using or Malfunctions Typhoons Explosives, Firearms, or Unavailability of Key Wildfires Conventional Weapons Personnel Theft Uninterruptible Power Supply Vandalism (UPS) Failure or Malfunction War Voice and Data Workplace Violence Telecommunications Failures or Malfunctions Water Outages anticipated. Such risks, when thoughtfully considered, are unacceptable to most transportation agen- cies. Accordingly, a broad spectrum of exercise activity is necessary if functional emergency response and recovery capability is to be realistically assessed and improved. Well-designed and -executed exercises are the most effective means of: Testing and validating policies, plans, procedures, training, equipment, and interagency agreements; Clarifying and training personnel in roles and responsibilities; Demonstrating mastery of standard and emergency operating procedures, communications, equipment, and public information dissemination; Improving internal agency and interagency coordination and communications; Identifying gaps in resources; Improving individual performance; and Identifying specific actions that should be taken to improve the response capability. Exercises are also an excellent way to demonstrate community resolve and cooperation to prepare for disastrous events. Review of successful responses to emergencies over the years has shown that pre- emergency exercising pays huge dividends when an actual emergency occurs. This is especially true in instances where communities were involved in full-scale exercises that tested the range of response activities, communications protocols, and resources to be applied. As providers of a public service, transportation agencies have a responsibility to Ensure customer and employee safety and security at all times, Train employees so that they know what to do when an emergency occurs, 4