EM: Working to ensure Air Force community ready for a disaster

  • Published
  • By Mekka Parish
  • AFCEC Public Affairs
September is National Preparedness Month and the Air Force Civil Engineer Center's Emergency Management Division is working to make sure the Air Force community is prepared for all emergencies -- natural, man-made or technological. 

"During National Preparedness Month we hope to reach hundreds of thousands of Air Force members and their families with information that can save lives and mitigate property loss," said Alfred Casale, Emergency Management logistics section chief.

The team is supporting this effort by providing resources to Air Force installations and surrounding communities to assist them in taking action.

"These actions come in the form of written materials, vignettes, supplies that they can purchase and keep on hand, drills and exercises that they can do," said James Martin, AFCEC emergency management analyst. "Some of it is knowledge-based, some of it is preparing things ahead of time, and some of it is actual training that can be conducted."

The effort is part of the Air Force "Be Ready" Awareness Campaign.  Be Ready's purpose is to assist installations in mitigating property damage, personnel injuries and deaths, and improve the installation's resilience; allowing for faster mission restoration and continuation. 

The national theme for this year's National Preparedness Month, is "Don't Wait, Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today." The division, however, is focusing its efforts on Air Force specific messaging.

"The way it differs is that we take our Air Force 'Be Ready' Awareness Campaign materials and we focus them towards Air Force members, to include commanders and unit emergency managers," Martin said.  "We focus on Air Force-related topics while the Federal Emergency Management Agency takes a much broader perspective and directs its messaging to the general public."

The Air Force's program launched in 2011 and includes a wide array of products such as the Air Force Emergency Preparedness Guide, children's activity books and applications for mobile devices. While those awareness and preparedness products have received a number of awards, the "Be Ready" campaign also measures its success in other ways.

"The real success of the program is when a disaster occurs at an installation and everyone knows what to do -- that is the real success of the program," Martin said.
For more information on AFEM preparedness efforts and resources, visit www.beready.af.mil.