the devastating floods and massive landslides in and around Sierra Leone’s
capital of Freetown on August 14, 2017, a number of different agencies
immediately responded to help those affected by the disaster. They were:
UK sent British military personnel to help look for survivors and give
emergency aid to the victims of the disaster. They provided specialist advice
to the first responders on emergency protocols and helped with removing the
dead. The UK donated vital humanitarian supplies, including food, water,
generators, tents, clothes and urgent medical supplies.
The UN system in Sierra Leone helped
support the national recovery. They helped address the urgent requirements of
those who were directly affected and designed a strategy to tackle longer-term
issues, including the environment, climate and disaster risks and future
The Office of National Security took
the overall lead in coordinating their response efforts with all the other
Humanitarian agencies involved in providing WASH, health, shelter and
protection help for victims who were placed in temporary holding centres and
with other families.
Promptly following the major disaster Handicap
International sent in a group of people to help identify and record the number
of casualties and help the Sierra Leone government develop an emergency
response plan. They assisted with
training other groups helping out at the disaster and coordinated the provision
of psychological first aid for the hundreds of victims who lost their homes and
loved ones and with rehabilitation for many who were injured. HI helped
evaluate the immediate and long-term needs of the victims who were affected the
worst. Their emergency systems were left in place until October 2017.
The International Federation of Red
Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) gave £270,000 from their Disaster
Relief Emergency Fund to help the volunteers aiding with the search and rescue
and recovery efforts to give first aid, health care, water, sanitation, hygiene
and emergency food. They also launched an emergency appeal to encourage people
to donate money to help support 5000 victims of the disaster for the next ten
Both the Save the Children and the
Christian Aid Charities gave counselling and support to children and families
affected by the crisis, and distributed sanitary and hygiene products including
soap powder, hand washing equipment and water treatment kits. So the children
could continue their education they also gave school bags, shoes, uniforms, textbooks
Oxfam along with other charities
provided clean water and hygiene kits to the survivors.
Manchester Arena Terror Attack
Manchester’s emergency services already had
plans in place to deal with potential terror attacks and within less than an
hour of the explosion, Greater Manchester Police declared a major incident and
trigged an immediate multi-agency partnership response at all command levels. The
Greater Manchester Police took charge of coordinating the response and quickly
closed off the roads in the area, while armed officers and British military
personnel were sent to areas of Manchester City Centre as part of Operation
Temperer. Uniformed police and paramedics attended the scene, while a counter-terrorism
operation began investigations. A bomb
disposal unit was sent into the arena to check for any more devices and a
controlled explosion was carried out.
four minutes of the 999 calls, The North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust
(NWAS) had paramedics at the scene triaging the injured and working with the
police to move them to a safe place where 25 more paramedics were waiting in
accordance with their major incident plan. 60 ambulances and other specialised teams worked
to stabilise the worst victims and take them to the Manchester Royal Infirmary.
part of the initial response, the Manchester council set up friends and family
reconciliation centre to provide shelter and support for those affected by the
disaster and helped reconnect families and friends. The police set up a hotline
for those concerned about their loved ones.
Cross-agency communications and consequence management team kept the public
informed and monitored community tensions.
Mass Fatalities Co-ordination Group was established to make sure the victims
were identified with care for the deceased and their families.
Grenfell Tower Fire
Policing and Crime Bill published on February 10th 2016, placed a
duty on the police, fire and rescue and ambulance services to work closely
together to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of all blue light services
in their area. By having close collaboration between the services it helps them
to meet the demands and challenges they face and better serve the public.
any emergency of this scale is never the same, under the Civil Contingencies
Act 2004 there is a framework in place which sets out clear roles and
responsibilities for local emergency responders to follow in response to
incidents on a local or national scale so they know their role and can
collaborate easily with one another. The plans are flexible and tailored to
reflect different circumstances.
Wednesday, June 14th 2017, just before 1 am, a faulty fridge freezer
caused a devastating fire to tear through the 24 storey Grenfell tower block in
North Kensington, west London. 71 people lost their lives, while many more lost
their homes and all their belongings.
emergency services were alerted at 12.54 am and immediately despatched fire
engines to the scene, where firefighters in breathing apparatus battled to
bring the blaze under control and rescue those trapped in the building. Police officers used their riot shields to try
and protect the firefighters from falling debris from the tower block.
Commander Richard Welch from the London Fire Brigade declared it as a major
incident around 1.20am and a pan-London multi-agency response was implemented.
The Gold-Silver-Bronze structure was then implemented to coordinate the
activities of the first responders. It took 250 firefighters and 40 fire
engines from across London, 60 hours to put out the fire.
Metropolitan Police were on site to coordinate with local authorities and other
emergency services during the emergency. They were responsible for putting an
outer cordon in place to control those who had access and an inner cordon to
protect those dealing with the incident and to preserve the scene. They helped move
nearby residents to safety and put counter measures in place to protect the public,
help the other emergency services save lives, keep the public informed on what
was happening and give support to the firefighters.
London Ambulance Service had over a hundred medics on site, including advanced
paramedics, ambulance crews and advanced trauma teams from London’s Air
Ambulance, working hard to provide treatment, stabilisation and care for a
large number of injured at the scene. They established a triage sorts system to
determine the priority in which the injured were taken to a hospital and
established a communication area for all NHS responders at the scene, with
direct radio links to hospitals, control facilities and all other agencies at
the scene. They were responsible for contacting local hospitals in the area so
they were ready to receive the injured.
duty press officer and a communications team were responsible for providing
quick accurate information on what was happening, the level of resources on
site and the injured. They put together statements for the media and posted
updates on social media. They joined meetings at brigade headquarters so they
knew what was going on and what information could be released to the media.
and recovery operations were carried out by firefighters, the Metropolitan
Police Disaster Victim Identification team, 50 specialists Urban Search and
Rescue firefighters and trained search dogs.
churches and community centres were opened to provide shelter for those evacuated
from the building and nearby properties.
The PM Theresa May took charge of the disaster
relief fund and promptly handed over the reins to the
Red Cross had been on the scene as the fire
burned. They were given the job of the
primary coordinator of the community assistance centre and the first point of
contact for anyone needing help. They are responsible for giving psychosocial
support to those affected, donating food, clothes and bedding, and fundraising
for the victims.
Grenfell Response Team was led by the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
and provided information on financial help, housing, health and other services
to those affected by the tragedy.
Analysis of the importance of
inter-agency emergency planning
major incidents, Inter-agency coordination and information sharing are vital in
order for a successful emergency response. It means the public services can
respond efficiently and effectively to all major incidents. Planning and preparation
allow the emergency service to respond faster.
having comprehensive emergency response plans that define the roles and
responsibilities of all the trained personnel attending a major incident it
allows all the different agencies to work together side-by-side.
planning beforehand it could highlight any potential problems that might arise
and identify any areas where the services need to improve. It also ensures all
the public services are working toward the same goal.
having a well-planned response to major incidents it could help prevent serious
injuries and death.
By having correct planning,
preparation, regular training and debriefing the emergency services are better
equipped to respond to the