We recently attended the Red Cross Emergency Preparedness Academy event, which took place on Thursday, March 10 at Grand Hall on Chouteau. The event was well-attended with over 200 people, who represented private companies, non-profits, schools, churches, and large corporations.
The audience heard from several speakers who discussed important topics, including disaster planning, business emergency management, handling a violent intruder, and the record flooding that occurred here last December. We learned a lot of great information and had some takeaways from this event:
Practice Makes Perfect – Preparedness planning must include drills, practice, and continual updating and monitoring. Many organizations make the effort to put a plan together; however, it tends to gather dust on the shelf. Make a concerted effort to have your organization ready in the event of a disaster.
Leaders Need to Be Flexible With Plans – In an emergency, the identified leaders need to reconvene frequently with one another in order to adjust the response plan as needed, depending on what develops with the emergency.
Prepare Well in Advance – When it comes to working with the media during an emergency such as the historic December flooding in St. Louis, it’s essential to plan and prepare long before the emergency occurs. This allows messaging to be clear and the proper channels for communication to be utilized effectively and efficiently.
Be More Prepared for Violent Intruder Emergencies – Unfortunately, active shooter situations are becoming more prevalent, most likely due to the publicity that intruders seek and receive from the media. Violent intruders will often “leak” information about their plans before they execute them, so it’s incredibly important to report anything that is said or done that is suspicious.
We feel very fortunate to have been in attendance for this event, and we look forward to attending any additional events in the future. If you happened to attend this event, tell us in the comments below what you got out of it.