Deputy Chief, Fire Department of New York (FDNY)
A specific radio signal has been designated for a situation in which many lives are endangered. This would provide the immediate response of numerous specialized units equipped to deal with building collapses, search and rescue, and firefighting. A prolonged, large scale event affecting a large part of the city would call for the activation of trained and pre-assigned Incident Management Team members to facilitate overall control of the incident. These individuals are specialists in logistics, planning, and operations and are a great asset in managing and coordinating with other agencies.
Tornados, hurricanes, or large snow storms all require strict personnel accountability and safe, pre-planned staging areas either in our firehouses or other predesignated locations. The specific post-storm component would be determined by the location and extent of damage.
This response was in reply to the July 2011 Roundtable question.