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37 Case Examples The case examples provided in this synthesis reference major concepts distilled from the literature review and from interviews. This section includes documents from the following airports that can be shared as examples for the larger airport community: 1. Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT) 2. George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) 3. Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) 4. McCarran International Airport (LAS) 5. Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) 6. Boulder City Municipal Airport (BVU) 7. Centennial Airport (APA) Practices explored in the case examples demonstrate innovative approaches airports have taken to build and strengthen their AEPs and associated programs. Two examples will look at the roles of needs assessments and gap analysis in AEP development. Other examples will highlight the use of collaborative methods of AEP maintenance through committees, stake- holder outreach, and other group meetings. The application of an AEP in a real-world event is discussed in the study on the Horizon Air aircraft theft and crash in Seattle. Lastly, examples are provided about how part 139 AEP standards can be applied in the GA environment. Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT) AEP Practices: Updating AEPs or developing all-hazards plans through a needs assessment or gap analysis Case Example: Communicable Disease Response Plan Airport Background: One of the top 10 busiest airports in the United States and American Airlinesâ second-largest hub, CLT is ranked the sixth-busiest airport in the United States and the seventh in the world, averaging 1,400 daily aircraft operations and transporting 122,000 passengers daily (2018). This case example is based on an interview with Michael Tobin, CLT emergency management coordi- nator (EMC), documentation provided, and other relevant documented sources. Identified Need: CLT receives numerous flights from the Caribbean, Europe, and Canada daily, so there is ample opportunity for an infec- tious disease to travel to Charlotte. C H A P T E R 4 Airport Characteristics American Airlinesâ second-largest hub Owned by the City of Charlotte Operated by the Charlotte Aviation Department 1,400 daily aircraft movements (2018) 550,013 aircraft movements annually (2018) Home to 18,000 employees and 50 companies 15719-02_Ch04-06,Glossary,Acronyms,AirportCodes-3rdPgs.indd 37 1/28/21 3:45 PM
38 Practices in Airport Emergency Plans Objective: Develop a Communicable Disease Response Plan that outlines roles and responsibilities as well as processes for investigating and managing an infectious disease at the airport. AEP Practices and Processes History and Catalyst for Communicable Disease Response Plan The AEP in its current state met the part 139 requirements but was in all aspects a generic document. A challenge faced by the airport was an inherent rigidity in the requirements that does not necessarily support an all-hazards approach. As a result, a number of annexes were created to provide response guidelines for hazards not addressed in the AEP that could have an impact on the airport, including, for example, the Family Assistance Annex, the Terminal Evacuation Plan, and the Communicable Disease Response Plan. Infectious diseases are one of many threats that can have an adverse impact on the operations, health, and safety of airport staff and passengers. Improper handling of an infec- tious patient can cause flight delays and potentially widespread public health consequences and could have an economic impact on the airport. A well-managed response, however, could save lives and mitigate against some of the worst poten- tial consequences for passengers as well as the airport, and could have a positive impact on public perception of the air- port as a responsible and caring entity. Such a response does not happen by accident but is the result of a well-developed, maintained, and exercised plan. Frequent daily flights from the Caribbean, Europe, and Canada provide ample opportunity for infectious diseases to travel to Charlotte. Although CLT is an international airport, the airport does not have a CDC Quarantine Station on-site. The closest CDC station is in Atlanta. This means that in the event of an investigation involving an infectious disease at CLT, the inquiry would have to be carried out by the airport, airline, Mecklenburg County Emergency Medical Services Agency, local hospital systems, and Mecklenburg County Public Health in consultation with the CDC via teleconfer- ence. This challenging process makes it extremely important that the Communicable Disease Response Plan exists to offer guidance to all participating parties, providing for a cohesive, smoother, and more effective response. The Communicable Disease Response Plan was the result of a request by CDCâs Division of Global Migration and Quarantine. The CDC approached CLT with the recommen- dation to develop a Communicable Disease Response Plan, referencing it as a best practice at other airports, and CLT agreed. The plan was developed in 2018, a year that presented many challenges for the airportâs response agencies. CDC staff visit CLT during plan development Source: Michael Tobin, CLT CDC staff presenting to airport personnel about communicable disease planning Source: Michael Tobin, CLT
Case Examples 39 Purpose of the Plan The plan was created to protect the health of travelers and airport/airlines staff and to limit the spread of infectious diseases to the community at large. International and national travel capability allows people infected with serious diseases to carry the agents that cause such diseases to distant locales. Identifying, isolating, and treating people infected with serious agents as soon as possible will limit the spread of the agent and its impacts on human health and society. Planning and Coordination Planning meetings began in April 2018. These meetings focused on the purpose of the plan and a review of roles and responsibilities traditionally performed by all agencies. There was a consensus among the participating agencies that they had performed all the elements of a plan during previous incidents but needed to record and organize their actions into a coherent document. A CDC airport-response-plan template was used to organize and format the teamâs thoughts and actions. Mecklenburg County Public Health led efforts to draft the initial plan, which was submitted to the planning committee for review and feedback. The review/revision process was repeated several times. Two hurricanes, outbreaks of hepatitis A within the county, and technical diffi- culties created challenges, slowing the progress of plan development. A final sign-off by agency was not completed until March 2019. The following agencies were involved with developing the plan: â¢ U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) â¢ Mecklenburg County EMS â¢ CLT Airport â¢ CDC Division of Global Migration and Quarantine â¢ North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services â¢ Mecklenburg County Public Health The following agencies provided secondary support: â¢ Charlotte-Mecklenburg Emergency Management Office â¢ Charlotte Fire Department â¢ Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department â¢ Atrium Healthcare System â¢ Novant Health â¢ Metrolina Healthcare Preparedness Coalition â¢ Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Disseminating the Plan Memorializing roles, responsibilities, and response and recovery actions into a Communi- cable Disease Response Plan increases the ability for all participating response agencies to work together and provide a more effective response. That can only happen if all participating agencies are aware of the plan, have a copy of it, and have worked together to test itânot only through exercises, but with the occasional activation of the plan triggered by sick passengers who meet specific characteristics.
40 Practices in Airport Emergency Plans Once developed, the plan was disseminated to the necessary stakeholders through emails, phone calls, conference calls, and meetings. Many representatives of the agencies who partici- pated in developing the plan are members of other regional committees and could socialize the newly developed plan to a larger audience. Successful Practices â¢ Stakeholder outreach: Airport EM is not an island. Successful planning and response are dependent on all participating agencies working together. Relationship building is key to this success. Mecklenburg County Public Health was instrumental in the initial drafting of the Communicable Disease Response Plan. Reaching out to engage all stakeholders pro- vided the necessary feedback and engagement needed to create an effective Communicable Disease Response Plan. â¢ Relying on available expertise: When developing a Communicable Disease Response Plan, drawing on the expertise of public health officials is a necessary practice. Responding to an infectious disease event is not a routine occurrence in the aviation industry. When planning for such an event, it is important to include the people who are proficient in the topic and understand the process for responding to it. â¢ Using the experts to gain stakeholder buy-in: The airport invited the CDC Division of Global Migration and Quarantine to come speak to CLT on two separate occasions. The first meeting was with the CLT Stakeholders Group. The stakeholders group meets biweekly and includes various groups within the airport community; airlines, public safety officials, FBI, TSA, FAA, concessions, retail, and others with a vested interest in the daily work environment at CLT. The second meeting was with the CLT Security Cabinet Meeting, a consortium of TSA, FBI, Homeland Security, local law enforcement, fire department, EMS, airport security, airport EM, airport operations, and other officials who discuss specific airport-related security and law enforcement issues and projects. Having the CDC speak to these groups provided the stakeholders with the opportunity to ask questions and to hear directly from the CDC about why the program was so important, ultimately helping to acquire the stakeholder buy-in the airport needed to move forward. Lessons Learned â¢ Collaboration and partnerships are the keys to success along with a strong plan to back up the process. Shortly after the plan was implemented, the airport had several potential incidents involving communicable disease. The planâs notification process was followed; all parties received communication, and the potential threat was resolved quickly without impacting the overall operation of the airline and airport. â¢ Transparency encourages engagement and trust. Be open and honest with the process and do not be afraid to bring in the experts. Having the CDC conduct a site visit was a strong indicator that not only was the airport serious about the program, it also allowed the partners/ stakeholders to provide their input into the plan. Summary Coming from county EM, the EMC found very quickly that aviation EM is not quite the same as jurisdictional EM, though the basics remain the same. Representatives of most responder agencies approach an incident involving an airport within their own experience and under standing of EM, not realizing that EM in the aviation industry has its own processes and terminology. This is a challenge that can be overcome through stakeholder engagement,
Case Examples 41 face-to-face meetings, and collaboration on planning, training, and exercising. When looking to develop AEP annexes or all-hazards plans, bring relevant stakeholders together that have a role in the incident, conduct a gap analysis of the issues at hand, identify the appropriate measure to mitigate the gaps identified, and develop a plan collaboratively. The CLT EMC discovered that the AEP, while in compliance with FAA rules, was not broad and flexible enough to allow for responses to multiple types of incidents not covered in the AEP. As a result, and at the urging of the CDC Division of Global Migration and Quarantine, CLT developed a Communicable Disease Response Plan in collaboration with numerous stake- holders and agencies. The plan was signed off on and disseminated to all necessary stakeholders. Throughout the process, the value of this coalition of planners became apparent in the final production of a cohesive and effective plan that outlines roles and responsibilities as well as processes for investigating and managing an infectious disease at the airport. The relationships built are maintained as the plan is exercised and updated and they continue to add to the effectiveness of the plan in identifying and managing communicable diseases at the airport. George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) AEP Practices: Updating the AEP through use of a review committee Case Example: AEP Review Committee Airport Background: George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) is an international airport in Houston, Texas. Originally named Houston Intercontinental Airport, it was renamed in 1997 after George H. W. Bush, the 41st president of the United States. IAH is part of the Houston Airport System (HAS) which also includes the William P. Hobby Airport (HOU) and Ellington Field (EFD). IAH is ranked the 18th-busiest airport in the United States, averaging 1,278 daily aircraft operations and transporting 43.8 million passengers annually. This case example is based on an interview with the EM coordinator of the Safety & Emergency Management Division for the three-airport system, documentation provided, and other relevant documented sources. Identified Need: When Hurricane Harvey struck Houston in 2017, dumping 51 inches of rain over the city, rising flood waters caused IAH and HOU to close, canceling thousands of flights and preventing evacuation by air. IAH had a hurricane plan, but it did not address flooding, and the AEP did not include a flood plan. With roads closed and flights canceled, hotels filled quickly and/or were inaccessible. Between IAH and HOU, more than 800 passengers and airline staff were stranded with no place to stay for 36 hours. In the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, a need was identified for more all-hazards and all-weather planning. An AEP Review Committee was used to review this real-world incident and determine whether any relevant updates should be made to the plan. Objective: Establish a consistent method to update the AEP using a collaborative approach. AEP Practices and Processes The AEP for IAH includes annexes as part of the plan instead of as separate supplemental documents. Previously, the plan was fragmented, consisting mostly of multiple plans in many departments throughout the airport. Multiple plans meant multiple updates and maintenance Airport Characteristics United Airlinesâ largest hub Owned by the City of Houston Operated by the Houston Airport System 466,738 aircraft movements annually (2018) Supports 170,000 local jobs 15719-02_Ch04-06,Glossary,Acronyms,AirportCodes-3rdPgs.indd 41 1/28/21 3:45 PM
42 Practices in Airport Emergency Plans by multiple departments. IAH conducted a gap analysis of the various plans throughout the airport; the resulting conclusions included supporting plans, revising plans, or including them into the AEP. HASâs EM cross-walked all the airportâs plans, revised them, and integrated them into one documentâthe AEP. Todayâs AEP is the core document referred to for instruction and guidance in preparing for and responding to emergencies. To best support response and recovery efforts, the AEP includes all-hazards annexes. Annex samples include the following: â¢ All-Weather Plan â¢ Tornado Plan â¢ Terrorism Plan â¢ Continuity of Operations Plan â¢ Evacuation Plan Instead of multiple plans spread across the airportâs multiple departments, one plan is established as a master document; and instead of multiple people being tasked with updating and maintaining multiple plans, a portion of those people work together to provide an annual review of the AEP or a postincident AAR where they offer their recommendations for updates or annexes. The AEP Review Committee was formed in about 2016 following the airportâs part 139 exer- cise. The airport recognized there was a gap in response practices among multiple departments, and the team needed to be on the same page. The AEP Review Committee includes representa- tives from the following departments: â¢ Airside Operations â¢ Landside Operations â¢ SafetyâSafety Management System (SMS) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration â¢ Emergency Management and Preparedness â¢ Police and Fire (as needed) The committee meets once a year to review plans; however, after an exercise or drill the team may meet to discuss the AAR and make recommendations for updating the AEP or relevant annexes. During these meetings, there is no specific agenda. It is facilitated by the HAS EMC, and the committee discusses relevant items in a particular plan that the group wants to review for updating. This review also includes any lessons learned or best practices following an exercise. Once recommendations are made, changes may be incorporated into a particular AEP or annex or a particular section in a plan. Recognizing that the AEP is not developed nor updated in a vacuum, and since the AEP is managed by the airportâs airside operations department, recommendations are discussed with them. Updates are incorporated as necessary and appropriate. Division managers and the airport general manager are involved in the update review process so that these leaders can give input, support, and approval of recommended updates at the time of the review. The biggest revision to the AEP annex using this method was following Hurricane Harvey. The hurricane plan was expanded and modified into an all-weather plan that includes flooding threats. The changes made to that plan helped with Tropical Storm Imelda in fall 2019. Based on lessons learned from Hurricane Harvey and updates made to the plan, the airport made the decision to close its facilities sooner than later and made multiple notifications to stakeholders; and before vehicles could get stuck, they coordinated closures to roads that typically flood. The airport increased their recovery efficiency by closing for 18 hours during Tropical Storm Imelda versus 36 hours for Hurricane Harvey. The plan fostered better decision making early on, limited operational impact, and helped ensure passengers arrived at their destination.
Case Examples 43 Successful Practices â¢ Exercises and training: The AEP is incorporated into training, exercises, and drills. â The airports train on the AEP during triennials. â Biannual tabletops train to the annexes. â Aviation security trains on the terrorism plan/AEP annex. â¢ IAH trains and exercises to the Harris County Aviation Plan, a plan that complements and mirrors the AEP. â¢ The AEP Review Committee ensures lessons learned and best practices are included in annual AEP updates. â¢ Minor changes are made to the AEP, while major changes are made to the annexes. The changes to the AEP format (annexes within the plan versus separate supplemental documents scattered across multiple departments) and the review/update process (annual review by the AEP Review Committee) were proven successful when Tropical Storm Imelda resulted in only 200 passengers stranded for 18 hours. The airport and airlines were able to make better decisions early in the incident, limiting the operational impact to passengers, personnel, and all other stakeholders. Lessons Learned â¢ When comparing the response between Hurricane Harvey and Tropical Storm Imelda, the following became clear: â All-hazards and all-weather plans have become an integral part of the IAH AEP. Hurricane Harvey demonstrated the value in converting the hurricane plan to an all-weather plan that includes flooding. â Time to respond: During Tropical Storm Imelda, airlines were able to put staff and passengers up in local hotels because they were given enough time to respond to the threat. â¢ While it is sometimes customary for an AEP to be managed and controlled by airside operations, there are disadvantages to such a practice: â There is more to an AEP than airside operations. â The AEP becomes a collateral duty, and limited attention may be given to maintenance of the document. â¢ Management of the AEP by either an all-hazards group with input by the occasional SME or by an emergency manager who would initiate collaboration that would ensure the plan speaks to as many stakeholders as possible. Summary When Hurricane Harvey struck Houston in 2017, rising floodwaters caused IAH and HOU to close, canceling thousands of flights and stranding more than 800 people for 36 hours. IAH had a hurricane plan, but it did not address flooding and the AEP did not include a flood plan. With roads closed and flights canceled, hotels filled quickly and/or were inaccessible. In the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, a need was identified for more all-hazards and all-weather planning. Additionally, the EM coordinator of the Safety & Emergency Management Division for the Houston airports system decided that the AEP as it was currently formed was fragmented with too many plans and too many people being responsible for updating their plan in what was a âcollateral duty.â An AEP Review Committee was established to review incidents and determine whether any relevant updates should be made to the plan. All plans were gathered, updated, and incorporated as annexes into the AEP, making one document the core plan.
44 Practices in Airport Emergency Plans As a result of the updates and the changes to procedures, when Tropical Storm Imelda struck, the airport closed for only 18 hours, hundreds fewer people were stranded, and airport operations recovered more quickly with limited impact to passengers, airlines, and airport personnel. Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) AEP Practices: Development of AEP annexes and training requirements using various metrics Case Example: Using real-world incident and collaborative group input to inform AEP annex development Airport Background: One of the fastest growing airports in the United States, the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) is the 18th-busiest airport in the United States and the 10th- busiest in the United States for international traffic, transporting 35,963,370 passengers and 333,465 aircraft movements annually. On Friday, January 6, 2017, FLL experienced an active shooter event. At approximately 12:54 p.m., a male passenger arriving on a flight from Minneapolis obtained a handgun from his claimed baggage and intentionally discharged the weapon in the baggage claim area of Terminal 2, killing five innocent bystanders and wounding six. The chaotic, panic-induced self-evacuation of people into secure areas led to an additional 40 injuries. As a result of the incident an AAR was developed to identify best practices and lessons learned during the event. Several improvement items included incorporating and updating elements into all-hazards plans to improve support and coordination response operations and streamlining the AEP and annexes. FLL also engages with several collaborative groups to inform their disaster resilience efforts. These groups include the FLL Emergency Response Coalition (FERC) and FLL Partnership Committee meetings with various airport stakeholders. To ensure stakeholders understand the newly developed annexes, FLL developed a training matrix and plan for ICS concepts and principles that support the AEP practice of training staff about AEP elements. Collectively, these metricsâa real-world AAR and collaborative stakeholder groupsâhave resulted in AEP annex development that enhances FLLâs preparedness and ability to respond and provide recovery to all-hazards incidents. Identified Need: Although the AEP contains the required information and chapters refer- encing hazards that could affect FLL, the airport identified the need to streamline plans and incorporate into a consolidated AEP, thus creating supporting annexes. Objective: To develop AEP annexes that are all-hazards and consolidated into one AEP document. AEP Practices and Processes The airport uses various metrics to determine the need for developing all-hazards annexes. Some metrics include executive leadership prioritization of needs, previous real-world incident AARs, and the use of an EM working group called the FERC. Airport Characteristics Owned by Broward County Operated by Broward County Aviation Department 333,465 aircraft operations (2018) 18th-busiest airport in the United States (2018) 10th in the United States for international traffic One of top 50 busiest airports Approximately 900 flights per day Home to 17,148 employees Generates a total of 255,386 direct, indirect, and induced jobs 15719-02_Ch04-06,Glossary,Acronyms,AirportCodes-3rdPgs.indd 44 1/28/21 3:46 PM
Case Examples 45 The FERC discusses current emergency plans, available training opportunities, exercises, and EM efforts at the airport to drive preparedness efforts, including plan development. The larger FLL Partnership Committee with airlines and tenants meets monthly. This meeting is used to discuss airport operations, security, TSA, and other airport issues. Feedback from this group supported the development of a Crisis Communications Plan in addition to the Rapid Recovery Plan. The Rapid Recovery Plan involved the airport and partners that will have to mobilize quickly to get runways back open and operational. Through these collaborative efforts, FLL determined that their AEP would best serve their community as an umbrella system, consolidating multiple plans into one. As a unified umbrella document, the AEP houses AEP-supporting annexes that have been developed or are currently under development. FLL has identified the following annexes included as part of the AEP (Figure 9): â¢ Hurricane Preparedness Manual â¢ Communicable Disaster Emergency Response Plan â¢ Terminal Evacuation Plan â¢ Severe Weather Plan â¢ Active Threat Plan â¢ Emergency Operations Center Reference Manual â¢ Airport Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP) Annex (complements the County COOP and uses their template) â¢ Rapid Recovery Plan (Airfield Recovery Plan) â¢ Crisis Communication Plan â¢ EOC Activation Manual (under development) As plans are created, these are available to stakeholders with roles and responsibilities contained within the AEP. AEPs and annexes are provided as requested and ahead of potential threats or during the appropriate season (e.g., hurricanes). Another way FLL aims to share their AEP and annexes in the future is through the use of WebEOC. WebEOC is an online EM portal where users can document situational information, track resources, and share documents. FLL is moving toward implementing a plan repository within WebEOC for personnel to access as needed. Figure 9. AEP annexes, SOPs, and manuals. (Source: FLL)
46 Practices in Airport Emergency Plans Lastly, to ensure stakeholders understand the plans, including the AEP, FLL has implemented a training program that incorporates in-depth AEP and ICS training as well as exercises beyond the part 139 requirements. FLL created a training matrix (see Table 5) that outlines the training requirements for personnel. Successful Practices â¢ Take lessons learned seriously. Knowledge obtained through lessons learned has been incor- porated, operationalized, and put into practice at FLL. One such successful practice is the teaching of a FEMA ICS course for senior and elected officials. As part of a regular training FLL Emergency Management Training Recommendations LEVEL 1 TRAINING LEVEL 2 TRAINING LEVEL 3 TRAINING COURSE NUMBER COURSE NAME AIRPORT COMMAND SECTION CHIEFS DEPUTY SECTION CHIEFS BRANCH DIRECTORS UNIT LEADERS DIVISION SUPERVISORS GROUP LEADERS SPECIALISTS MANAGERS STRIKE TEAMS TASK FORCES SINGLE RESOURCES ICS-100 Introduction to ICS ï¼ ï¼ ï¼ ICS-200 Basic ICS ï¼ ï¼ ï¼ ICS-300 Intermediate ICS for Expanding Incidents ï¼ ï¼ + ICS-400 Advanced ICS for Complex Incidents ï¼ ï¼ + IS-700 NIMS: An Introduction ï¼ ï¼ ï¼ IS-702 NIMS Public Information Systems ï¼ + IS-706 NIMS Intrastate Mutual Aid, An Introduction ï¼ + IS-775 EOC Management and Operations ï¼ ï¼ + IS-800 NRF, An Introduction ï¼ ï¼ EOC Familiarization ï¼ ï¼ ï¼ Position-Specific Training ï¼ + + AEP Familiarization ï¼ ï¼ ï¼ ï¼ = required training; + = recommended/additional training. Table 5. FLL EM staff training matrix.
Case Examples 47 program, the class involves a high-level overview training and provides the leadership with a better understanding of ICS principles (which is the response system outlined in the AEP). â¢ Make the AEP accessible to stakeholders. The AEP is circulated through stakeholder groups. FLL offers the AEP to stakeholders who request a copy. â¢ Share experiences. FLL wants to share their success stories and past challenges on the road by providing workshops and training presentations on aviation EM (including AEP famil- iarization). The intent is to share information about aviation EM and the importance of airports to a region; what aviation EM is; how it complements county/local programs; and some examples of emergency response at airports, as well as an airportâs role during and after disasters. Lessons Learned â¢ Managing AEP updates. FLL EM staff in the past received little to no background training or knowledge about developing and updating the AEP. Previous staff provided a copy of the AEP but no additional information. Other than the AC 150/5200-31C, there is no further guidance on the frequency required for updating the AEP and/or any supporting documents. â¢ Train and exercise to the plan. FLL does not currently train to the AEP beyond the part 139 requirements. FLL is looking to move beyond simply having a plan that meets federal require- ments, but to develop a plan that is valuable to partners year-round and to train to the plan, including what it encompasses and how it is activated and updated. FLL will implement additional training for Fiscal Year 2020, including taking advantage of FEMAâs Virtual Tabletop Exercise Program. Future efforts also include more in-depth AEP training with stakeholders, including for more effective evacuation during the active shooter event with fewer injuries. Summary FLL uses several metrics for developing supporting AEP annexes. From real-world incidents to collaborative working groups, FLL incorporates feedback, AARs, the FLL strategic plan (2018), and group input to inform development of these annexes. This helps to build stakeholder engagement and buy-in as the airport enhances its preparedness and builds its resiliency. Furthermore, FLL has established a training matrix outlining the training needs to support understanding of the concepts and principles contained within the AEP and annexes by stakeholders. Ultimately, FLL has used many inputs to develop all-hazards plans that close gaps and prepare its community. McCarran International Airport (LAS) Credit: This body of work was a collaborative production by the Clark County Department of Aviation, Airside Operations Team, and EM AEP Practices: Socializing the AEP with stakeholders Case Example: Innovative ways LAS socializes the AEP with stakeholders Airport Background: McCarran International Airport (LAS) is part of the nationâs core 30 large-hub airports. It is the 9th-busiest airport Airport Characteristics 9th-busiest airport in the United States Owned by Clark County, Nevada Operated by the Clark County Department of Aviation Operates four general aviation airports 1,479 daily aircraft movements (2018) 539,866 aircraft movements annually (2018) Home to 18,500 personnel employed by Clark County, the airlines, and support tenants 15719-02_Ch04-06,Glossary,Acronyms,AirportCodes-3rdPgs.indd 47 1/28/21 3:46 PM
48 Practices in Airport Emergency Plans in the United States, transporting more than 49.7 million passengers in 2018 and averaging 136,200 passengers daily. Approximately 85% of McCarranâs passengers are origin and destina- tion travelers, meaning they start or end their air travel itinerary at LAS. McCarran is an enterprise fund operation owned solely by Clark County, Nevada, and operated by the Clark County Department of Aviation. Clark County also operates four GA airports: Henderson Executive Airport (HND), Jean Sport Aviation Center (OL7), North Las Vegas Airport (VGT), and Overton/Perkins Field (UO8). Led by McCarran, Clark Countyâs aviation system generates an annual economic benefit of nearly $30 billion for southern Nevada. More than 1,500 employees work for the Department of Aviation and another 18,500 per- sonnel are employed at McCarran by the airlines, concessionaires, and other support tenants. The Clark County Fire Department ARFF Station 13 maintains three response-ready Striker firefighting trucks, a paramedic unit (Squad 13) and qualified and trained firefighting staff in accordance with 14 CFR, part 139, with qualified on-duty firefighters housed on the airport. LAS ARFF maintains staffing and equipment availability 24/7, meeting the airport Index E requirements (index means the type of ARFF equipment and quantity of fire extinguishing agent that the certificate holder must provide in accordance with 139.315, and specifically for aircraft at least 200 feet in length). McCarran is also a global leader in technology. It is one of only two major airports in the world (along with Hong Kong International) that uses radio frequency identification tags to track 100% of outbound checked baggage. McCarran also helped pioneer the use of multi- airline, common-use ticketing kiosks, and in 2012 introduced self-baggage check-in and self-boarding technologies. The west side of LAS has two fixed-base operators (FBOs) that support charter and GA opera- tions, which includes a satellite CBP office for processing arriving foreign visitors. Helicopter operations exceed 500 flights per day from the west side, with the Grand Canyon as the primary tour destination, along with event air taxi service and aerial tours of the Las Vegas Strip. Identified Need: In 2018, following a basic revision to the AEP, updating of various pages, including general formatting and seeking feedback from airline stakeholders for comments, the current emergency administrator saw that the AEP was too cumbersome for stakeholders to gain a thorough understanding in a quick and efficient manner in regard to the expectations of them during an emergency as outlined in the AEP. New airlines would request emergency planning information, but there was nothing prepared to give them other than the full docu- ment, which did not offer an easy and digestible format for stakeholders to understand their roles and responsibilities specific to the threats and hazards identified in the AEP. The emergency administrator saw the need for a condensed version of the AEP that could be distributed to new airlines and partners; a quick reference guide and checklists were created that provide easy access to phone numbers, maps with grids, and a list of what to do and who to call during emergencies. Objective: To create quick reference guides, quick start guides, and checklists to provide stakeholders with easy access to basic AEP information, as well as response and recovery processes needed during emergencies, both for use in the field (at the incident location) and at the EOC. Airport emergency exercise, LAS Source: Emergency Administrator, LAS
Case Examples 49 AEP Practices and Processes History and Catalyst for Developing Innovative Ways to Socialize the AEP Prior to 2017, all plans and exercises were additional duties divided among personnel, including the operations coordinator, who later became the airportâs first emergency admin- istrator. He felt the AEP was a good start, but just a start. While it complied with FAA 14 CFR, part 139, regulations, he realized the AEP is too large of a document to be physically used during an emergency. Knowing the AEP contains valuable information, he consolidated several checklists from information within each AEP annex for the various stakeholders that would be involved in an incident. In doing so, it became clear that there were some gaps in planning that the AEP did not address. For example, the AEP does not address incidents that take place inside the terminal, such as an active shooter event or the discovery of luggage with a large amount of illegal drugs. Another issue was nonstandardized terminology. Although the NIMS was fully adopted by LAS in accordance with the FAAâs AC 150/5200-31C, there can still be residual nomenclatures that persist throughout an airport or aviation environment. For example, an airline may use the term âfriend and family assistance center,â instead of the NTSBâs term, âfamily assistance center.â Future Planning and AEP Practice Refinement LAS continues efforts to refine AEP practices, ensuring stakeholders understand what to do during an emergency, which is of the highest priority. The emergency administrator is working toward creating a working group that would address these issues. The working group would consist of a team of experts from the airport community to per- form a gap analysis and provide solutions for closing those gaps within the AEP, with the goal of creating a plan that would offer substan- tial guidance and standard procedures for responding to or recover- ing from an event. It would also condense that information into the quick reference guide, which provides easy access to basic informa- tion that stakeholders need during an emergency. The emergency administrator recognizes that the AEP is the go-to document and, should stake holders need to delve deeper into response actions or operations, they can always refer to the full AEP. ICS 214 Form can be a model. Innovative Solutions Developed The quick reference guides (example included in Appendix E) and checklists are filtered and simplified versions of the AEP that include directions for what to do during emergenciesâwho to call, phone numbers, maps with grids, and other basic information, much of which is extrapolated from the AEP. Other reference documents include quick-start guides for personnel who will report to the EOC and use the WebEOC software (a system used to document and track EOC activities, reports, and resources). The first volume produced 50 guides that were quickly distributed and enthusiastically received. The second volume is in production and will include sections on bomb threats, active shooters, swine flu, H1N1, and Ebola. ICS 214 Form â¢ An activity log â¢ Records details of notable activities during an incident or event â¢ Includes resource tracking, basic incident activity, critical actions/ decisions, and a timeline â¢ Often used in the field and in EOCs
50 Practices in Airport Emergency Plans Some items for use during exercises and emergency are modeled after ICS Form 214 and feed into the ability to inform the AAR. Collectively, LAS ties together the larger AEP docu- ment with practical application by providing personnel with these guides and checklists, giving them the ICS 214 forms to complete during an exercise or event (capturing what they are doing, when they make decisions, and important actions taken) to then inform an AAR and make updates to the AEP. Other Successful Practices â¢ One-on-one interfacing with stakeholders: The emergency administrator takes the time for individual face-to-face meetings with airline station managers and new personnel to discuss emergency roles and responsibilities and to educate them about what is in the plan and what they can expect during an emergency or event. â¢ Onboarding tour of the EOC: Provides the stakeholder with the information they would need to respond to an incident, including where in the EOC they will be located, phone numbers, and seating arrangements. â¢ Training and exercises: â EM provides ICS 214 to triennial participants in a tablet form (i.e., multiple blank ICS 214 forms, bound together across the top border instead of single-sheet pages) enabling participants to record their actions and the sequence of events, informing the AAR. â TTXs are function-focused (e.g., facilities, maintenance, and the like) and checklists provide appropriate guidance for use by participants. â LAS trains and exercises multiple shifts at multiple times and multiple days for training continuity and experience. â EM provides a grid map of the airfield to better familiarize staff with the layout of the airport. â Use exercises with teams that are smaller in nature but that feed into the larger incidents outlined in the AEP and AARs to improve overall response and recovery operations through unencumbered honest dialogue often omitted in large groups. â EM uses the Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP) guidance for conducting exercises. â¢ Identify the return on investment: EM at LAS identifies the ROI when updating the AEP; what benefit it offers the organization and its customers: identification of gaps to support the ROI, and development of solutions to close those gaps (e.g., quick reference guides, checklists). Lessons Learned â¢ The AEP is redundant: Much of the AEP is duplicative, and the capabilities needed to manage the incident are often the same, regardless of the incident. Therefore, checklists allow users to understand the roles and responsibilities that are similar across various threats or incidents. (McCarranâs Emergency Action Plan Reference Guide can be found in Appendix E.) â¢ Change is rarely eagerly embraced: Stakeholders across the board often resist change out of a fear of the unfamiliar or do not recognize change may be necessary to solve unexpected issues. One way to resolve this is to manage expectations. Arming staff with the knowledge of what to expect so that they know what actions to take, why those actions are necessary, and what their own specific roles and responsibilities are enables them to be better prepared, more open, and accepting of change when it is required. â¢ Do not overload the AEP with multiple MOUs and LOAs: To streamline response, limit delays, and minimize issues, LAS references other plans, LOAs, MOUs, and so forth, and does not place these items directly within the AEP.
Case Examples 51 â¢ Reference support services in the AEP (food services, baggage services, and the like) and then provide opportunities for them to exercises their roles (refer to training and exercises under âother successful practicesâ). â¢ Build relationships internally: Airport personnel, airlines, support services, and external agency or jurisdiction representatives are key to a successful plan and response. Summary While the AEP provides information necessary to respond to and recover from incidents and events at the airport, the emergency administrator identified that there were gaps to bridge and the information contained within the AEP needed to be accessible to all stakeholders. The resulting development of the quick reference guides and checklists was a successful response to the need for air- port personnel, airlines, and support services to have infor- mation at their fingertips, accessible and easily digestible for use during emergencies and events. Understanding the airport community and how best to serve it allows LAS to create inno vative AEP practices when socializing their AEP throughout the community. As LAS continues to improve and refine their practices, they will use a working group of experts to address the gaps in the AEP and the resulting quick reference guides and continue to use a creative approach to training and exercises. All these efforts and AEP practices have resulted in an airport whose employees, airlines, and support services are more familiar with the AEP and better equipped to respond effectively during an airport emergency. Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) AEP Practices: Incorporating updates into AEP processes following a real-world incident Case Example: Unauthorized flight and ensuing crash of Horizon airliner Airport Background: Operated by the Port of Seattle, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) is ranked as the eighth-busiest U.S. airport, serving 49.8 million passengers and more than 432,315 metric tons of air cargo in 2018. With a regional economic impact of more than $22.5 billion in business revenue, Sea-Tac generates more than 151,400 jobs (87,300 direct jobs), representing over $3.6 billion in direct earnings and more than $442 million in state and local taxes. A total of 32 passenger airlines serve 91 nonstop domestic destina- tions and 29 international destinations, including Canada, Mexico, and seasonal operations. This case example is based on an interview with the airport, documentation provided, and other relevant docu- mented sources. In August 2018, a Horizon Air employee stole an aircraft and crashed it off airport property. Subsequently, the airport conducted and published an AAR detailing 34 recommendations for improvement, including updates to planning processes and all-hazards plans. Airport Characteristics Owned and operated by the Port of Seattle 438,391 aircraft operations in 2018 Annual passenger traffic: 49,849,520 Generates 151,400 jobs (87,300 direct jobs) Triennial airport emergency exercise, LAS Source: Emergency Administrator, LAS
52 Practices in Airport Emergency Plans Identified Need: Following real-world incidents, airports can incorporate lessons learned and best practices into the AEP and any supporting annexes, as well as all-hazards plans. As a result of the aircraft accident, Seattle drafted additional SOPs in the event of a future occurrence. Objective: Incorporate lessons learned from the AAR and IP into the AEP. AEP Practices and Processes The SEA AEP is a comprehensive document developed based on the guidance of the AC. While many other airports develop annexes to their AEP, SEA chooses not to include supporting plans, but instead incorporates processes and enhancements to their main document. There are, however, additional SOPs and standard operating guidelines (SOGs) that have been developed parallel to the plan to keep it streamlined for FAA compliance. The AEP is updated on an annual basis; throughout the years, the airport has worked to keep it simplified, stripping it of unnecessary steps and cutting outdated processes. For example, the AEP included a Mass Casualty Incident (MCI) Plan in the Fire Department portion of the AEP. Since King County has a standard MCI plan that supports the airport as well as the region, including such a plan in the AEP was redundant. The airport removed the MCI plan and instead referenced the County MCI Plan. Allowing for references to plans that support the airport in addition to the region instead of duplicating them has helped to simplify the AEP and remove the burden of updating the same plan in multiple documents. Prior to and after the Horizon Air accident, SEA has placed an emphasis on incident management and response for the AEP. To complement these efforts, the airport maintains a rigorous training program, including biannual refresher requirements for the ICS and the NIMS. In coordination with that training, the airport ensures that the AEP is consistent with ICS/NIMS principles. In August 2018 an airline employee, in what was called a âspectacular theft,â appropriated an empty Bombardier Q400 turboprop plane. The ground service agent took off on a 75-minute flight in which he executed steep banks and a barrel roll while being followed by fighter jets before eventually and intentionally crashing to his death on an island southwest of Seattle in Puget Sound. He was not trained to fly. After a 3-month investigation, the FBI concluded that he acted alone. His death was ruled a suicide. In his own words to the air traffic controller, he was âjust a broken guy, got a few screws loose. Never really knew it until now.â The flight closed down airport traffic. A pair of F-15 fighter jets broke the sound barrier while approaching the plane, and it started a national conversation. In addition to seizing public attention, the inexplicable event caught the interest of airlines and airports across the country, as well as the NTSB and other authorities, who all demanded to know how such a thing could happen. Investigations found no criminal or terrorist links and no clear motive. The purloining pretend pilot was a properly credentialed airline employee whose responsibilities included regular access to aircraft. No protocols were broken until the actual theft. In the following months, all eyes were on SEA as the airport attempted to make sense of a senseless situation. In the immediate aftermath, the airport reviewed their security mea- sures and assessed their procedures. Workers already were subject to background checks and screenings for drugs and alcohol. The airport already led the industry with its full employee screening program requiring all employees to pass a physical security screening, including magnetometer scans, before entering secure areas of the airport. Prior to this incident, SEA had implemented a national best practice of formal AAR/IP process to review their current plans, practices, processes, and procedures and identify areas
Case Examples 53 for improvement following exercises and real-world incidents. The AAR brought to light gaps in those areas and as a result, SEA crafted additional SOPs, such as processes for immediate notifications upon alert of the incident, including the FAA, Joint Terrorism Task Force, and airport and airline leadership, as well as local jurisdictional points of contact (POCs) (e.g., the State of Washington EOC Duty Officer) who then can notify the other jurisdictional stake- holders and constituents who may need to know. Although several airports have experienced real-world incidents, SEA established a formal process to review the incident, identify areas to improve (to include identifying gaps in the AEP and all-hazards planning), and incorporate the changes through an improvement process. By using an AAR process and developing an AAR and IP, SEA has established a process for updating their AEP when incidents affect the airport and its stakeholders. Key takeaways for updating and improving the AEP or developing supporting plans include the following: â¢ Event notification: Improve timeliness of notification of first responders and key airport/ regional/federal stakeholders. â¢ Communications center coordination: Better define and delineate (or consolidate) roles between the Airport Communications Center and the Port of Seattle 911 Center. â¢ Emergency communications and coordination: More timely and robust communication with key tenants/stakeholders through existing systems in all areas of operations (e.g., landside, terminal, and airside). â¢ Command and control roles: Clarify roles and responsibilities of the ICP, Emergency Coordination Center, and Policy Group and train accordingly. â¢ Customer care plan: Develop a plan to address customer needs during large-scale disruptions to airport operations (communications, food/water, medical, shelter, and transportation services). Successful Practices â¢ An AAR and an IP were completed, resulting in updates to the AEP, and additional proce- dures were developed. For example, upon alert of such an incident, immediate notifications will be made to the FAA, 911, airport and community leadership, and state points of contact who can notify other stakeholders. Memorializing this into the AEP will help during future events. â¢ A formal AAR review process for real-world events was adopted with the potential to provide valuable feedback and a mechanism for tracking improvement items. This creates account- ability for ensuring the AEP is up-to-date following a real-world incident. â¢ Use other events to inform AEP updates, such as the FLL active shooter incident from 2017. SEA rewrote the entire Mass Evacuation Plan because of this incident. The Mass Evacuation Plan helps support and supplement the nuances of the details of a terminal evacuation outlined in the AEP. â¢ Additional SOPs were crafted to include notification in the event of a future occurrence between the ramp tower, the FAA tower, and the airportâs 911, using a mass notification system that includes the State of Washingtonâs constituent municipalities. â¢ A further notification process for emergency response personnel was also added. Lessons Learned â¢ Leaving the AEP generic is difficult to do when the regulations create gaps in planning. To bridge those gaps, airports are creating SOPs/SOGs to supplement the AEP specific to each airportâs needs. â¢ Keep the AEP simple for FAA review. Each FAA representative is different. Communicate with them to determine what they are looking for when validating an AEP.
54 Practices in Airport Emergency Plans â¢ The AEP is dependent on collaboration. Be persistent when confronted with resistance or apathy from stakeholders. â¢ Begin the review process early. Reach out to stakeholders; send cheat sheets to departments to help them more quickly review the part of the plan for which they are responsible. â¢ Mental health conversations, planning, and training can occur regularly. Summary The value of an AAR/IP in the aftermath of an exercise or drill is widely known and a proven benefit when root-cause analysis is properly conducted, leading to accurate recommendations for improvement(s). The AAR is the reason for the exercise. Without a document that shines a light on the gaps in a plan, along with a plan for bridging those gaps with corrective actions, an exercise is wasted time. However, it is more difficult to examine lessons learned resulting from a real-world emergency. Airports may benefit from using these real-world eventsâtheir own and othersâin the same way to improve their AEP practices for updating AEPs and developing supporting annexes or all-hazards plans. Learn from the emergencies and disasters. An emergency is an opportunity to test the plan and to learn from what went well, what did not, and why. Using this case example, airports can learn to formalize and structure their AEP processes to incorporate lessons learned from real-world events along with corrective actions. Some real-world events are rare but still somewhat expected. Hurricanes, fires, tornadoes, and active shooter events are infrequent yet common enough to the extent that there is con- sideration taken for these threats when updating the AEPs. Whether it is an event already well considered or an incident not yet thought of, each real-world event requires a period of reflection afterward. How did this happen? How could this have been prevented? What went well? How do we get better? How do we improve our plans? SEA learned from this and other real-world events. The airport developed an AAR/IP and updated the AEP to reflect the corrective actions established, creating a stronger and more effective plan to better mitigate against loss of life and property. Boulder City Municipal Airport (BVU) AEP Practices: AEP development at general aviation airports Case Example: Boulder City Municipal Airport AEP with additional information about Pearson Field Airport (VUO), Vancouver, Washington Airport Background: Boulder City Municipal Airport is a GA airport serving Boulder City, Nevada. It replaced Boulder City Airport, which was originally named âBullock Airport.â The Boulder City Municipal Airport is assigned BVU by the FAA and BLD by the International Air Transport Association (IATA). IATA assigned BVU to Beluga Airport in Beluga, Alaska. BVU passenger destinations are predominantly the Grand Canyon, with flights arriving at either Peach Springs Airport (DQR) or Grand Canyon National Park Airport (GCN). Operators based at BVU include the following: â¢ Papillon Grand Canyon Helicopters â¢ Las Vegas Helicopters â¢ Scenic Airlines, operated by Grand Canyon Airlines â¢ Grand Canyon Airlines â¢ 5 Star Helicopter Tours Airport Characteristics Open to the public Primary nonhub Owned by Boulder City Municipality No air traffic control tower at airport 225,000 enplanements per year 15719-02_Ch04-06,Glossary,Acronyms,AirportCodes-3rdPgs.indd 54 1/28/21 3:47 PM
Case Examples 55 Identified Need: As a small primary nonhub airport without commercial service, BVU is not required to meet part 139 standards, and, traditionally, they have not had a developed emer- gency response plan that was more than a working document. The airport manager saw the need for a coordinated response during an emergency. Objective: AEP development for a noncertificated airport. AEP Practices and Processes Unlike larger airports, GA airports are not required to meet part 139 standards. The newly hired BVU airport manager, who has a background in EM, had previously worked at VUO in Vancouver, another GA airport. VUO had developed an AEP because it was the only flat piece of property that was accessible to material and equipment. In the event of a disaster that impacts the community at large, VUO would become the primary location for staging equipment and bringing in supplies because of its flat space and runway. The local EM organization there was lacking the expertise to support the airport and the city with emergency planning and did not understand the logistics side of the supply chain, as well as the nuances of airport response during a disaster. For example, a cascading event, one in which certain responses to an emer- gency are followed by an inevitable and unforeseen chain of events, could impact the airport differently than the community, because an airport has different issues and concerns than nonairport facilities. Now at BVU, the airport manager considered that to be a successful practice worth emulating at this airport, especially considering continual expansion and increased activity at BVU over the past 10 years. Additionally, they can write the plan on a smaller scale and tailor it to their needs and the activities that take place within the community. In the cases of both BVU and VUO, management decided that an AEP was needed and that the template from the FAA AC would be used. AEP Status and Use The planning that is currently in place at BVU is incomplete; the information shared covers emergency notification and hands-on training with airport personnel. The AEP is currently pending approval, so it has not been provided to anyone at the time of this writing. At VUO, the airport manager/director was the approving authority for the AEP. Outside the airport, it was distributed to a select few, including the chief of police, fire chief, battalion chiefs, the county EM organization, and the Civil Air Patrol, since they would use the airport for search and rescue activities. Both the county and the city would support an incident at the airport. At this point, the BVU AEP has not yet been incorporated into training, exercises, or drills. Incidents may regularly occur that involve several response organizations, and this allows the teams, including the airport staff, to work together during a small-size emergency or event (e.g., landing gear issues). This is not only because the AEP has not yet been approved but is also because of the lack of resources for developing and facilitating exercises, a common issue at GA airports with small staff. For example, there were no exercises or training events at VUO. There was, however, an annual event that provided the opportunity to work with fire and police on minor aircraft incidents. After incidents, the team would have a hotwash to discuss successes and challenges. If an event is large enough, airport staff can seek input and guidance from the Washington Airport Managers Association. As is typical with most emergencies, their greatest challenge was communications. The airport would use VHF radios while fire and police would communicate via 800 megahertz (MHz)
56 Practices in Airport Emergency Plans radios, meaning they could not talk to one another during an emergency. If airport staff are available, they will use small handhelds and communicate their information to the incident command, who will then put it out on their 800 MHz radios. Challenges Experienced in Developing and Implementing an AEP in a General Aviation Airport â¢ Incident notification: Not all GA airports are well staffed or staffed for 24 hours a day. Incidents sometimes occur without anyoneâs knowledge. For example, an employee could arrive at the airport to find a plane on the runway and no one who knows what happened. â Communicating with emergency services: An initial incident is difficult because BVU has no tower to communicate with emergency services. After hours in the evening, there is no one there to call in an incident. â¢ Collaboration with fire and police has been a challenge, making development and imple- mentation of an AEP more challenging. â¢ Creation of a defined process: Much of it must be determined spontaneously because of small staff, notification, and availability. â Determining roles and responsibilities â Moving emergency vehicles to airport locations â Identifying staging locations â¢ Training police and firefighters to operate in an airport setting: An airport setting is different from many other settings. In the event of a plane crash, it is important to know not to cut the fuel line when there is still power in the plane. Not knowing where or even whether to cut could exacerbate the problem. Firefighters and police need to understand where to go during an airport emergency. The airport needs them, but if they are not trained to work with the airport, they may be unfamiliar with the airportâs layout and can waste time searching for a location. Successful Practices in AEP Development at a GA Airport â¢ AC 150/5200-31C: This is a boilerplate AEP provided by the FAA that guides the planner in what needs to be addressed in the plan. BVU reviewed the AC for guidance in developing their AEP, and then collaborated with local fire and police chiefs on responses to incidents at the airport. â¢ Coordination with local jurisdictions: Discussions covered the type(s) of assistance that may be provided if an incident occurred at the airport requiring local EM or first responders. The value of the airport during an emergency was emphasized. For example, the airport can provide a staging area for supplies to move through, or staging for various equipment, as well as to receive resources as needed. â¢ Train first responders on working with the airport: BVU has provided information to first responders about access points, letting them know to have dispatch communicate with the airport and to identify staging locations in case it is not an active incident (aircraft on approach, for example). They have also explained to police what their role is (e.g., wait by the gate, limit the access, and secure the perimeter). Considerations for Other GA Airports Considering Developing an AEP â¢ Put your ideas on paper and discuss them with staff and local responders to gain buy-in. â¢ Require staff to complete ICS training, beginning with ICS 200. ICS courses will provide basic understanding of EM concepts and principles.
Case Examples 57 â¢ EM responses at a GA airport should be coordinated by the city or county emergency manager, as well as health departments, public works, and city/county administrators. â¢ Take advantage of available resources. Some helpful resources for someone who is not necessarily experienced in working with airports include the following: â AC 150/5200-31C â www.airtap.umn.edu â http://www.airtap.umn.edu/publications/factsheets/ â http://www.airtap.umn.edu/publications/factsheets/documents/emergency_guidebook.pdf Summary Having come from VUO, the new BVU airport manager was already familiar with the challenges and requirements of operating a GA airport, including the fact that BVU was not required to meet part 139 standards. While an AEP was not required, he still saw a need for a more complete plan than the airport currently had and felt that an AEP would provide the coordinated response needed during an emergency. Using AC 150/5200-31C, a boilerplate provided by the FAA in developing an AEP, and in collaboration with local fire, police, and EM, as well as using experience obtained in operating a GA airport at VUO, BVU completed development of an AEP written on a smaller scale and tailored to meet their needs. Since the AEP has not yet been approved, it has not been implemented or used in training. But the benefits brought about in the development stage itself so far have been notable. In the process of developing the AEP, BVU began to work more closely with local responders and EM, showing them how the airport can be of value to the community during an emergency and training the responders on the unique needs of airports and what they need to know when responding to an emergency at the airport. Centennial Airport (APA) AEP Practices: AEP development at GA airports Case Example: Centennial develops a nonmandatory AEP Airport Background: Centennial Airport is a GA airport in the Denver metropolitan area. It was originally named Arapahoe County Airport when it opened May 12, 1968. In 1984, it was renamed Centennial Airport in honor of the day Colorado became the 38th state in 1876, the centennial of the day the United States Declaration of Independence was adopted by the Second Continental Congress. With an average of 924 aircraft operations per day, Centennial is one of the busiest GA airports in the United States. Identified Need: As a GA airport, Centennial is not required to meet part 139 standards, but decided to develop an AEP as a proactive measure; a best practice they believed would have beneficial results. When creating the emergency response plan EM personnel made the decision to develop an AEP, using the AC as the fundamental building block and customizing it to meet the airportâs needs. However, Centen- nial noted some portions of the AC were not applicable to them as a nonâpart 139 airport. Objective: AEP development for a GA airport Airport Characteristics Public use Nonprimary reliever airport Owned by Arapahoe County Public Airport Authority 337,947 aircraft operations (2018) 15719-02_Ch04-06,Glossary,Acronyms,AirportCodes-3rdPgs.indd 57 1/28/21 3:48 PM
58 Practices in Airport Emergency Plans AEP Practices and Processes The AEP was first drafted in the mid-1990s. Although the core of the plan has not changed significantly over the years, new sections have been added as new types of emergencies have emerged. As Centennial is not required to comply with part 139, the team recognized they had some flexibility in deciding what to include in their AEP. For example, Centennial Airport is not required to have a dedicated ARFF team because of the lack of commercial operations. Therefore, the airport is not required to meet part 139 fire-response-time requirements. In this case, their ARFF is part of South Metro Fire and Rescue (SMFR) and is not on site at the airport. As a result of this flexibility, the airport has pulled some sections from the AC, such as the functional areas, but has not included others. Their base plan mirrors the base plan of the AC regarding organization. They also have hazard annexes that are set up as guided by the AC. The AEP is open-ended, with detailed response operations and organized into two main sections as follows: â¢ Base Plan. This section is made up of basic EM planning information that requires regular updating, such as contact information, functional descriptions, and responsibilities. â¢ Annexes. Specific emergencies such as aircraft emergencies, bomb threats, terrorism, and the like. The goal of the airport is to provide a high-enough level of detail to provide guidance in response, while remaining open-ended enough to allow for the variation between emergencies. When updating the AEP, Centennial evaluates the need for additional annexes in light of the changing risk landscape, upcoming regulations, or new EM practices. One example is Active Shooter/Active Threat. This is an annex that was not part of their AEP several years ago but is now considered a necessary inclusion in their current AEP. Centennial chooses to update the AEP every 3 years. With approximately 350,000 operations per year and significant training traffic, as well as the occasional aircraft accident, there is considerable opportunity to incorporate lessons learned and best practices into the AEP. Tabletop and full-scale exercises provide further opportunity to incorporate changes into the AEP. AEP Use Distribution: The AEP is provided to airport staff, local law enforcement, the fire depart- ment, and by request to FBOs. SSI is removed for general distribution to the FBOs but is kept in for emergency agency partners. Other tenants do not receive the AEP unless requested. Instead, the airport discusses the roles and responsibilities contained in the AEP with the tenants. The airport works with those tenants to familiarize them with emergencies and other aspects of the AEP. Outside agen- cies are informed when updates are completed and provided with an electronic copy, where applicable. Training/exercises: The EM staff is trained to the AEP as well as all new airport personnel. The AEP is incorporated into training and exercise activities, including their triennial full- scale aircraft-accident exercise that includes fire and local law enforcement, as well as other response agencies. Centennial has a close working relationship with the SMFR. SMFR responds to airport incidents and is familiar with the AEP. The airport and fire department continuously Aircraft accident exercise at Centennial Airport Source: Brian Lewis, APA
Case Examples 59 train together on emergency procedures, aircraft, and airport familiarization. Conversely, Centennial participates in SMFRâs exercises as well as exercises hosted by local responder and/ or EM agencies. Challenges Experienced â¢ Keeping information current: Contact information is verified; maps with new development are updated every 2 years. â¢ Keeping partners updated: As a large department with frequent turnover, for example, the sheriffâs office can be a challenge to keep current. The department is included in all full-scale exercises and invited to train in between conduct of the exercises. Centennial participates in TTXs, which include the sheriffâs office as well. But because the sheriff âs office has limited training days, getting on their calendar can be a challenge. â Deputies sent to an emergency may often be people who are unfamiliar with the airport. â Because Centennial sits within two counties (Arapahoe and Douglas), there are two different sheriff âs offices to keep updated. â The sheriffs of Arapahoe and Douglas Counties are elected. Briefing can be a challenge if they have no aviation experience. â¢ Making sure everyone who needs a copy gets one: In the past, this has not been done, but currently, Centennial makes sure everyone who needs a copy receives one and that they know what the changes are. To keep track, the airport keeps a distribution log. â¢ Deciding what to include in the AEP and what to keep separate: The decision to create a separate plan is made based on the complexity of the plan and the scope of the new plan according to the level of detail and the functions that may fall outside the scope of a typical emergency operations plan, such as crisis communications or continuity of operations, both of which have their own standalone plan. â¢ Incorporating changes that occur in the aviation industry and other changes that occur over time: As with any airport and aviation environment, the threat and hazard landscape is always changing and progressing. Ensuring staff and the AEP stay up-to-date in a reasonable period can be a challenge. Successful Practices â¢ Communication: Having identified the need for a more effective way to convey information to the public and the media, Centennial hired a media and communications manager (public information) to write a procedure for communications. This has resulted in new and positive relationships with local media and the development of a large and thorough Crisis Commu- nications Plan that became a standalone document because of its detail. â¢ Avoid conflicting plans with other agencies: Prior to the release of any updates, the airport meets with other agencies to ensure there are no conflicting issues between plans (i.e., deconflicting or cross-walking of plans). This practice also ensures familiarity between Centennial and the other outside agencies. â¢ Employee Handbook of Emergencies: Outside of Airport Operations, much of Centennialâs staff is not connected with EM. As a plan directed mostly to operations staff and law enforcement, the AEP is a plan that most employees are not familiar with. Airport staff need an employee handbook that defines the roles and responsibilities for staff about what they should or can do during specific emergencies that affect them. As a result, Centennial is currently developing an employee guidebook to provide direction for incidents such as an active shooter or a bomb threat. â¢ Using available resources to inform the AEP: Some of the Centennial staff serve as terrorism liaison officers trained through the Colorado Information and Analysis Center (CIAC).
60 Practices in Airport Emergency Plans Terrorism liaison officers meet internally with Operations and leadership to discuss intelligence, which they can incorporate into AEP updates as appropriate. They use this resource, along with other connections throughout the community, to inform the AEP. Summary Although the AC does not dictate the Centennial Airport AEP, they use the AC as a guide and make the effort to comply with it as much as is practical for a GA airport. Centennial has refined and tweaked the AEP to suit the unique needs of the airport. Some changes come as a result of working with the CIAC, while other changes occur because staff deconflict or cross-walk other plans with partner agencies. Many changes to the AEP come out of necessity, while others may be economi- cally driven. As a GA airport, Centennial has the freedom to build their own plan according to their specific needs without the requirement to comply with the part 139 AC, all while still having access to the guidance provided by the circular. The resulting document is a well-developed plan that works well for Centennial Airport. Aircraft accident at Centennial Airport Source: Brian Lewis, APA