Exercise Benefits / Facts
The Florida Department of Health In Orange County undertook an effort to develop, facilitate and evaluate a disaster exercise entitled “Hurricane Access – A Special Needs Shelter Tabletop Exercise”.
This exercise served as an opportunity for agencies and organizations responsible for sheltering individuals with special medical needs an opportunity to assess their current knowledge and enhance their existing capabilities to open, manage and demobilize a Special Needs Shelter.
During the exercise participants worked through scenario information and injects that challenged their ability to work within a shelter environment with partner agencies and organizations while meeting the needs of individuals with special medical needs.
The exercise will focus on the following Public Health Preparedness Capabilities:
Capability # 1: Emergency Operations Coordination
Capability # 6: Information Sharing
Capability # 7: Mass Care
It is late August and local residents have been complacent in their hurricane preparedness activities because this year’s hurricane season has only produced several tropical storms and a few minor hurricanes, none of which have made landfall. Families are preparing their children for the start of a new school year while local business owners and government agencies are thinking that the hurricane season could be very inconsequential. However weather forecasters are predicting a major change in the atmosphere that could see a sharp increase in the severity of hurricanes within the next few weeks.
By early September area residents, business owners and government officials begin to follow the projected path of another tropical storm.
The Hurricane Access Tabletop Exercise was conducted during the morning of March 8, 2016, in Orlando Florida.