Special Considerations - Unified Command
The coordination of the various agencies and responders is crucial for maximal outcome. A unified command approach utilizes the NIMS (National Incident Management System), which incorporates incident command system with multiple agencies and emphasizes the importance of interagency communication and coordination.
Issues that need to be addressed are the current response configurations of law enforcement (local and FBI), fire department and the medical response including EMS, public health and hospitals. A contaminated multiple casualty incident response will likely require the activation of an emergency operations center, public health notification and ongoing mutual aid.
The awareness and acknowledgement of the complexity of the situation, and delineation of authority to initiate, direct and delegate needs to be addressed in preparation for this scope and scale of event ideally in community and organizational response plans. These plans should specify the roles and responsibilities of individuals including:
- Who does what?
- Who is call and how they are contacted or notified of an incident?
- Updated contact information of pertinent necessary personnel including both day and night time phone numbers.