APWA Book Review

Writing Your Emergency/Disaster Plan
120 pp * 2005 * APWA

Writing Your Emergency/Disaster Plan provides basic guidance for those in the field of public works who have the responsibility for emergency planning within the organization. All communities should have a Disaster/Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) to provide direction to departments and agencies during an emergency or disaster. This book is designed to assist public works agencies in preparing for their roles and responsibilities in all phases of emergency management and to ensure they act in a timely manner to meet the changing needs and conditions of a community in crisis. To ensure that public works-related activities are integrated into emergency management operations, plans should include a separate annex or a number of annexes identifying public works functions. The annex should mirror the EOP in format, terms, decision-making process, etc., so that it supplements and supports the jurisdiction's EOP.

Beyond the threat of man-made or natural hazards, all jurisdictions generally provide common community services. It is critical for public works agencies to identify these common functions and assign responsibility for each. In doing so, jurisdictions can ensure that their organizations are prepared to carry out assigned emergency or disaster functions, while maintaining routine activities in areas not directly impacted by the event. This publication follows the Department of Homeland Security-Federal Emergency Management Agency (DHS-FEMA) format for emergency planning in recommending the use of a functional approach for developing the public works annex to the EOP. This will ensure that all appropriate public works functions are included. The annex format is not the only way to address public works functions and activities; there are some specific issues that must be dictated by the jurisdiction.

This manual details the various roles and responsibilities that public works plays in emergency management. It is a reference resource for experienced managers and a training tool for others at all levels of public works organizations. The manual covers:

  • The Public Works Annex - purpose, mission, situation and assumptions, concepts of operation, phases of emergency management, annex development and maintenance, authorities and references
  • Training and Exercises
  • Summary and Appendices - this includes emergency operation guidelines samples, sample mutual aid agreement, public education websites, federal training programs, and additional resources

This publication is but one of the series of books and DVDs that APWA makes available to public works leaders around the world for use in preparing for, responding to and recovering from natural and man-made disasters and acts of terrorism.

For more information on purchasing this book and other American Public Works Association books, please visit the APWA Bookstore online at /bookstore or call the APWA Bookstore at (800) 848-APWA, ext. 5254.