Comanche County, Oklahoma

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Officials meet on county disaster plan

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 Local leaders are making plans to deal with disasters big and small.   

Stan Rice, environmental services director for the Association of South Central Oklahoma Governments (ASCOG) met with leaders from cities and school districts across Comanche County and the Comanche County commissioners Monday afternoon at the Comanche County Courthouse to discuss drafting the latest version of the county’s fiveyear hazard mitigation plan for the federal government.   

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) requires a plan to be submitted by every entity within every county in order for it to receive FEMA aid if a disaster is declared.   

Rice said that when the Moore tornadoes hit in 2013, Moore missed out on some FEMA aid because it was not part of a current hazard mitigation plan. The current plan on file for Comanche County expired in 2013.   

Rice is drafting a new fiveyear plan to cover all sorts of possible disasters, including storms, drought, earthquakes, dam failures and many more. He needs input from every city and school in the county, so he met with representatives Monday to give them an overview of how the hazard mitigation plan works.   

Rice has asked all area leaders to submit their portions of the plan, which will essentially be “wish lists” of what each entity would like to do in order to lessen the effects of disasters, such as adding safe rooms to guard against tornadoes. The input from area leaders must be received by ASCOG before the end of November, he said.   

Rice said putting a possible project on the list does not obligate the town or school to undertake that project. In addition, if a project is listed on the current plan and funding is obtained for it, FEMA may fund 75 percent of the listed project.   

Several towns and schools in Oklahoma have been able to build safe rooms or other weather shelters with help from FEMA because the projects were listed on hazard mitigation plans, he said.   

The hazard mitigation plan will be effective for five years from the date it is accepted by FEMA.

 

CERT: Disaster Medical Operations

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A partnership between Fort Sill, Lawton/Comanche County Emergency Management, the Oklahoma State Department of Health, the Medical Emergency Resource Center, the Oklahoma Medical Reserve Corps and the Oklahoma Office of Homeland Security is offering a FREE class on September 26th, 6 to 10 pm, Saturday, September 27th and Sunday, September 28th from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.to teach you how to deal with emergency situations. This class is called Community Emergency Response Team (CERT). We are conducting this training for the benefit of increasing individual and family preparedness as a culmination of National Preparedness Month.  Students must attend all sessions to complete the training and receive credit.

This week our focus is on disaster medical operations part 1. Have you ever been the first person to see an accident either in your neighborhood or on the street? Besides calling 911 which is always the correct thing to do, did you want to or know how to render any immediate assistance before first responders arrived?  Have your or a family member ever been injured, by falling out of a tree, falling off of a bicycle, or cutting yourself severely on glass or metal?  Did you know how to stop the bleeding or how to stabilize the injured area properly until help could arrive?  Is this something that you would like to know how to do?

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