Within the realm of emergency management the Operations Section is responsible for carrying out the principles of emergency preparedness and emergency management, or disaster management functions at a strategic level in an emergency situation. This function ensures the continuity of operations of a company, political subdivision or other organization. Most often the objectives of the Operations Section are carried out within an emergency operations center (EOC)
An EOC is a central command and control facility responsible for carrying out the principles of emergency preparedness and emergency management. It is responsible for the strategic overview, or “big picture”, of the disaster, and does not normally directly control field assets, instead making operational decisions and leaving tactical decisions to lower commands. The common functions of all EOC’s is to collect, gather and analyze data; make decisions that protect life and property, maintain continuity of the organization, within the scope of applicable laws; and disseminate those decisions to all concerned agencies and individuals. In most EOC’s there is one individual in charge, and that is the Emergency Manager.
The first most critical component of an EOC is the individuals who staff it. They must be properly trained, and have the proper authority to carry out actions that are necessary to respond to the disaster. They also must be capable of thinking outside the box, and creating a lot of “what if” scenarios. The local EOC’s function during an emergency is to support the incident commander.
The second most critical component of an EOC is its communications system. This can be from simple word of mouth, to sophisticated encrypted communications networks, but it must provide for a redundant path to ensure that both situational awareness information and strategic orders can pass into and out of the facility without interruption.
Supporting operations at the EOC level can be a demanding and stressful endeavor. Brocato and Associates has years of experience with crisis and disaster operations at all levels and through a variety of operational scenarios, both at the field tactical level as well as within the EOC.. We can provide operational support in the form of training, assistance with policies and procedures, or EOC staffing, if necessary. Regardless of the situation, Brocato and Associates stands ready to assist your organization with Operations Support.