30 Sep 96
Potential Levels of Emergency Response
Response Action or Institutional Response
Flood watch alert
Notify key local official of developing potential flood situation and alert watch
Notify local officials responsible for warning dissemination and emergency response plan
Flood warning desemination, mobilize emergency personnel for public safety and protection
of vital services, make levee/road closures as necessary
Flooding is imminent
Property relocation/removal, evacuation, search, and rescue
Flooding is occurring
Flood fighting, establish emergency medical services, shelters, security measures
Flood is receding
Postflood recovery measures initiated
(a) Means of obtaining flood information
for the plan as described in Section b and include a description
of all the assumptions made regarding the benefits of the
(b) Procedures for evacuation
(c) Flood fighting procedures
a. Appropriate technology. In any flood warning
and/or forecast system, it is important to use technology
(d) Recovery and reoccupation procedures
appropriate to the situation. Complex technologies employed
in situations without local skills, resources, and long-term
(4) Preprinted newspaper inserts, seminars, and work-
operational commitment may quickly lead to system failure.
shops can also be used to distribute information and increase
Conversely, it might not be appropriate to use simple stream
level alarms to protect high-value property that could be
moved, given enough time. Simple river level alarms might
(5) Periodic drills.
not yield enough time to respond, leading to unnecessary
losses of life and property.
(6) Periodic evaluation and modification of the plan
(1) Appropriate technology considerations should be
(7) Negotiation and renewal of contracts, interjurisdic-
reviewed extensively during system design. These consid-
tional agreements, memoranda of understanding, and other
erations should also be reviewed during the life of the system
implementation agreements as necessary.
to account for evolving local capabilities.
e. Repetition, repetition, and repetition are often the
(2) When flood warning systems are designed, some-
three most important elements of game day preparation. The
times the first consideration is what hydrologic model to use.
same concept is valid for an emergency response plan for
Often the choice of model, or whether a hydrologic model
"upcoming" flood events. The more a plan is practiced, the
will be used at all, should be considered last. The reason is
higher the probability of success when the "game" begins.
that hydrologic modeling is still very much an art as it is a
science. The models themselves need considerable attention.
4-6. Plan Selection
Modeling results often demand the eminent judgement and
interpretation of a trained hydrologist, something not always
Based on the information developed from the previous
available at the local level. Hydrologic models often require
described analysis, evaluate the enhancements and their
years of historical data to be properly calibrated to local
accomplishments. Compare plans, consider the appropriate
conditions. Most of the time, these data are not readily
level of technology described in Section a and select a flood
warning - preparedness plan for recommendation. Develop a
these circumstances, the initial forecast results must be used
detailed description of the elements and components of the
with great caution.
recommended plan including the cost and realistic accom-