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36 Synopsis of Issue Debris management requires a coordinated effort among various departments or agencies within a jurisdiction, as well as outside agencies that have regulatory authority or fulfill a specific support function within the operation. This coordinated effort must be organized such that an appropriate span of control exists, roles and responsibilities are established well in advance, and the approach can be âright-sizedâ depending on the level of effort required by the debris- generating event. This chapter outlines the establishment of a structure for debris operations using the National Incident Management System (NIMS) and Incident Command System (ICS). NIMSâICS is used by all levels of governmentâfederal, state, tribal, and localâas well as by many nongovernmental organizations and the private sector. Target Audience â¢ Local and regional DOT, DPW managers. â¢ State agencies (DOT, GSA, DEP/DEQ). NIMS and the ICS NIMS identifies concepts and principles that provide a framework for managing emergencies from preparedness through recovery regardless of their size, location, cause, or complexity. The system provides a consistent, nationwide approach and terminology for multiple agencies or jurisdictions to work together before, during, and after a disaster. The primary components of NIMS are: â¢ Preparedness. â¢ Communications and Information Management. â¢ Resource Management. â¢ Command and Management. These four components all represent critical elements of emergency management and related operationsâsuch as debris managementânot only during response but throughout the entire lifecycle of emergency management. The Command and Management component is broken down into three key elements, all important to debris operations: â¢ ICS. â¢ Multiagency Coordination Systems (MACSs). â¢ Public Information. C H A P T E R 6 Operational Structure and Organization
Operational Structure and Organization 37 ICS is a standardized, on-scene, all-hazards incident management approach that: â¢ Allows for the integration of facilities, equipment, personnel, procedures, and communications operating within a common organizational structure. â¢ Enables a coordinated response among various jurisdictions and functional agencies, both public and private. â¢ Establishes common processes for planning and managing resources. ICS is flexible and can be used for incidents of any type, scope, and complexity. It allows users to adopt an integrated organizational structure to match the complexities and demands of single or multiple incidents. As previously mentioned, NIMSâICS is used by all levels of government as well as the private sector. ICS is a national standard of practice as established by Homeland Security Presidential Directive (HSPD)-5 and National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1600. It is also applicable across disciplines, and has specific legal requirements when used by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and other organizations. Finally the system is supported by various professional associations, including the American Public Works Association. ICS is structured to facilitate activities in five major functional areas, described in Table 6.1. All of the functional areas may or may not be used based on the incident needs. Small, localized incidents may not fully use each of these components while larger incidents may use all of them. ICS is modular, allowing for a dynamic and agile organization adaptable to the changing needs of an incident. As a system, ICS is extremely useful; it not only provides an organizational structure for incident management but also guides the process for planning, building, and adapting that structure. Using ICS for every incident or planned event helps hone and maintain skills needed for the large-scale incidents. The Operations Section is typically where most resources are organized. In order to maintain a proper span of control, as well as for ease of organizing operations based on function, resource type, and/or geography, ICS provides options for additional organization of the Operations Section, as described below. Branch: An organizational level used when the number of divisions or groups exceeds the span of control. The Branch level is organizationally between Section and Division/Group in the Source: FEMA Independent Study Course IS-100 PWb. (21) Table 6.1. The five functional areas of ICS.
38 A Debris Management Handbook for State and Local DOTs and Departments of Public Works Operations Section, and can be either geographical or functional. The person in charge of each Branch is designated as a Director. Most incidents with significant debris operations are likely to be organized at the Branch level. Division: An organizational level having responsibility for operations within a defined geographic area. The Division level is organizationally between Branches (if activated) and Single Resources. The person in charge of each Division is a Supervisor. Group: Established to divide the incident into functional areas of operation. Groups are composed of resources assembled to perform a special function, not necessarily within a single geographic division. Groups are organizationally located between Branches (if activated) and Single Resources. The person in charge of each Group is a Supervisor. Single Resources: An individual piece of equipment and its personnel complement, or a crew or team of individuals with an identified Supervisor who can be available to work at the site of an incident. Single Resources are the most basic elements of organization within the Operations Section. Examples would include a hand crew or a loader. Strike Team: A set number of resources of the same type operating under the direct supervision of a Strike Team Leader. An example would be four snow plows working together to clear a highway. Task Force: A combination of mixed resources operating under the direct supervision of a Task Force Leader. An example would be a loader, hand crew, and two dump trucks working together to clear debris. The application of MACS, another key component of a NIMS, is a process that allows all levels of government and all disciplines to work together more efficiently and effectively. Multiagency coordination occurs across the different disciplines involved in incident management, across jurisdictional lines, or across levels of government. Multiagency coordination can and does occur on a regular basis whenever personnel from different agencies interact in such activities as preparedness, prevention, response, recovery, and mitigation as show in Figure 6.1. Often, cooperating agencies develop a MACS to better define how they will work together more efficiently, which is often documented in operational plans; however, multiagency coordination can take place without established protocols. A MACS may be put in motion regardless of the location, personnel titles, or organizational structure. Figure 6.1. Multiagency coordination systems overview (DOC 5 Departmental Operations Center). (Source: FEMA Independent Study Course IS-701.a) (22)
Operational Structure and Organization 39 Initially the Incident Command/Unified Command and the Liaison Officer may be able to provide all needed multiagency coordination at the scene. However, as the incident grows in size and complexity, off-site support and coordination may be required. Integral elements of MACS are dispatch procedures and protocols, the Incident Command structure, and the coordination and support activities taking place within an activated Emergency Operations Center (EOC). Fundamentally, MACS provide support, coordination, and assistance with policy-level decisions to the ICS structure managing an incident. Application of ICS and MACS Concepts to Debris Operations Each jurisdictionâs comprehensive emergency management plan or emergency operations plan likely addresses a concept of operations that relates to the application of ICS. Debris plans developed as a functional annex to the jurisdictionâs plan should reference this concept of operations and expand upon it to describe the application of ICS and related components of multiagency coordination as they apply specifically to debris operations. Typically, debris operations are conducted within the jurisdictionâs EOC, which is a facility component of multiagency coordination, often organized and operated using the principles of an ICS, with the purpose of managing and supporting incident operations. The EOC provides strategy- level coordination and logistical support to the jurisdictionâs designated incident commander, the individual in charge of all tactical operations. Through the EOC, agency representatives from multiple assisting and supporting agencies can leverage their agencyâs resources and expertise to the overall effort. Debris operations often require input from multiple agencies, needing technical expertise, regulatory input and authority, and resource support for clearance, removal, and disposal activities. Examples of agency representa- tives include the National Guard, state department of transportation, state police, state emergency management agency, state environmental agency, and the USACE. Based on their size and complexity, debris operations are often organized at the Branch level within the Operations Section of the ICS organization. Debris management falls under the direction of the Operations Section Chief who reports to the EOC manager (the EOCâs version of the Incident Commander). As part of the ICS organization (see Figure 6.2), they are supported by all other functional areas of the organization, including the command staff (sometimes called management staff in the EOC); Liaison Officer; Safety Officer; and Public Information Officer; the Logistics Section that obtains all needed resources and support; the Finance/Administration Section that handles all costs and contracting support; and the Planning Section that tracks resources and situational information and coordinates the development of the Incident Action Plan (IAP) for each operational period. A sample ICS structure that emphasizes the Debris Operations Branch is shown in Figure 6.3 below. While not typically seen in ICS organizations, an advanced concept that can be exercised called branch-level planning places a Planning Specialist in the Branch to support the Branch Director in operationalizing their debris management plan and formulating strategic plans and tactical direction in conjunction with the Planning Section (these will ultimately become com- ponents of the IAP). This is an ideal application for large and complex debris operations. Debris operations may become sizeable and complex enough to require their own physical space for management and coordination activities if the EOC is not large enough to accommo- date them. In this instance, it would make sense for the Debris Management Branch to relocate to a Departmental Operations Center (DOC). This location could be the local public works offices
40 A Debris Management Handbook for State and Local DOTs and Departments of Public Works Figure 6.2. Standard expanded ICS structure. (Source: FEMA NIMS ICS-300 Training) (23) Figure 6.3. Example of ICS structure.
Operational Structure and Organization 41 or any other space with the size and infrastructure to support their needs. Just as the location, layout, and necessary resources and support are pre-planned for the EOC, this should also be performed for the DOC. Because of the physical separation of the DOC from the EOC, it may be necessary to have a Debris Branch representative (perhaps the Deputy Debris Branch Director) located in the EOC to facilitate communication and represent the branch in meetings. The DOC may operate in this location or another site for an extended period of time, as the incident evolves from response to recovery and until debris operations are completed. Structure of Debris Operations The most commonly asked question in response to any disaster is âWho is in charge?â However, the most appropriate question is âWho is in charge of what?â The challenge in planning the debris operations structure is to identify which roles and responsibilities are needed. Ideally, a jurisdiction or other organization is able to match each of these roles to a position in the current day-to-day structure, although for larger and extended operations this may not be possible. When an incident occurs, an organization needs to consider consulting partner organizations for expertise and supplementary staff. Public works staff from surrounding jurisdictions and staff from state DOTs should be considered, if available. Another option is to request debris specialists from the state emergency management agency, which can contact qualified personnel from around the country. Positions to consider in planning efforts: Debris Operations Branch Director (and deputy): Responsible for activating the debris man- agement plan, managing all debris management activities, and coordinating with the operations section chief. This position is likely to be filled by the public works director/superintendent and his/her deputy. Division/Group Supervisors: Responsible for implementing specific portions of the debris management plan as directed through the IAP. These will include activities specific to the clearance, removal, and disposal of debris. Organizations should consider what operations are likely to occur during nighttime hours and plan for personnel accordingly. These positions will likely be filled by public works supervisors. Task Force/Strike Team Leaders: Employed as needed to implement specific tactical actions. If they are used, they provide direct supervision to single resources. These positions will likely be filled by public works supervisors or foremen. ICS training to at least the ICS-300 level is highly recommended for public works directors and superintendents. ICS training to the 100 and 200 level is available online. ICS-300 is only available in a classroom setting. The training officer, city/county emergency manager, or state emergency management agency should be contacted for information.