I need help explaining the functions of NIMS and ICS in a disaster crisis that happened in the past 10 years. What worked and what did not work? As a crisis manager, how would you have conducted the operation differently and why?
Remember, this is the first time the ICS-NIMS system was used in a major disaster. The Senate Report (see below) condemns them and FEMA all around.
Here are my outline notes on your question.
ICS: incident command system. This is meant to guide the practices of different agencies responding to an emergency. Part of the mission is to have standardized parts, equipment and training, so everyone's on the same page. It deals with disaster planning and logistical support (actually bringing equipment to the site).
ICS can be summarized this way, for any emergency response, all agencies must have
-a single set of objectives,
-a collective approach to develop strategies to achieve incident objectives,
-improved information l ow and coordination between all jurisdictions and
-all involved agencies have an understanding of joint priorities and restrictions,
-protection from the compromise of each participating agency's legal authorities, and
-optimization of combined efforts through a single Incident Action Plan (Katrina report, page 560)
Criticisms of ICS in general have included: shifting of command from the initial responder to the ICS, weakness in inter-organizational communication, failure to coordinate different agencies (Buck, et al, 2006: 3-4).
NIMS is meant to expand the military organization ...
The expert explains the functions of NIMS and ICS in a disaster crisis that has happened in the past 10 years.