The Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support held a Disaster Support to Civil Authorities Academic session May 4 to review plans and procedures, and improve coordination and communications with government partners for the upcoming wildfire and hurricane seasons.
Presenters from across Troop Support discussed their roles in national and global emergency responses and the related planning and recovery issues involved in executing efforts.
“We are in the teeth of wildland fire season, and hurricane season will come upon us in short order,” said Army Brig. Gen. Gavin Lawrence, DLA Troop Support Commander. “The academics conducted today will really set the conditions and give us the necessary knowledge and tools to successfully execute our roles in support and response to any upcoming natural disaster events.”
The session began with a summary of the National Response Framework, a guide that outlines government, private sector and nongovernmental organizations’ roles in a unified emergency response effort.
Dorothy O’Connell, whole-of-government representative, gave an overview of how Troop Support partners with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, U.S. Agency for International Development and the U.S. Forest Service during disaster response.
“This is always a major event. Not only to work with other entities within our agency, but to understand how we work with our whole-of-government partners in preparation for two seasons that run simultaneously, both wildfire and hurricane,” O’Connell said.
Other topics discussed include Troop Support’s relationship with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the organization’s Wildfire Protection Program, the role of DLA’s Rapid Response Teams and the responsibilities of the various supply chains during an emergency response.
The session ended with a practical exercise where participants went through key actions associated with a hurricane making landfall on the east coast while 12 active wildfires burned in the southwest.
“My hats off to the team not only going through the material, but providing a practical exercise where we could go through a scenario and visualize our response collectively as an agency in action,” Lawrence said.