By Jeremy Murray
MOBILE, Ala. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Mobile District, joined by Corps Headquarters personnel and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, held a hurricane tabletop exercise to help prepare for response in the event of a hurricane making landfall along the Gulf Coast.
These tabletop exercises are sessions where hypothetical emergency scenarios are discussed by key personnel assigned to emergency management roles and the team simulates the actions, they would take during a real word crisis.
“This creates a training environment for participants to validate plans, roles and responsibilities that would occur during an actual emergency,” said Ashley Leflore, emergency management chief, Mobile District.
The results of the exercise can help identify opportunities to improve response capabilities by revealing training and equipment needs or required changes that can be corrected before a real event occurs.
The exercises are conducted every year as part of the emergency management plan to prepare for hurricane season.
Dehyrl Middleton, disaster program manager, Mobile District said that one of the biggest benefits of the exercises are the networking opportunities.
“Our goal in this exercise is to build relationships with our external partners,” said Middleton. “In the case of an emergency whether that is hurricane or floods we have established a relationship to get the job done.”
USACE is part of the federal government's national response to disasters and emergencies and assists the Department of Homeland Security and FEMA as the primary agency for public works and engineering-related emergency support.
Hurricane season is June 1-Nov. 30, with the peak threat period from mid-August through October.
A “below average” hurricane season is expected according to the forecast from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Climate Prediction Center.
Leflore says the Mobile District emergency management team is prepared to take on the 2023 hurricane season.
“I feel more prepared for this hurricane season than any other year,” said Leflore “we have a great team this year that has made it a priority to be ready soon as hurricane season starts.”
With an area of operation across Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, and northern Florida, and a vast military region that includes operations across Central and South America, the Mobile District’s award- winning teams of engineering, construction, regulatory and emergency management professionals are nationally recognized for their leadership in delivery of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ civil works and military programs missions to the Nation.
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