By Doug Lundborg
The Wyoming State Emergency Management and the Department of Homeland Security have mandated that all counties, cities and towns must have an updated Emergency Management Operations Plan (EOP) with risk assessments of hazardous materials within our town, either stored or in transport. This requirement ensures that all entities have complied with the requirement of the federal government to have an EOP when applying for federal or state monies.
As your police chief and emergency management coordinator, I have acquired a working model. With the assistance of Moorcroft Fire Department personnel, Jesse Connelly from the Moorcroft Ambulance Service and information provided by the businesses of Moorcroft and the surrounding area, as well as former Crook County Emergency Management Coordinator Melanie Wilmer, we have all worked on the new plan for the past year.
This 98-page plan is comprehensive, detailed and up to date. It includes instructions that are detailed as to what and how we are to carry out assistance to the town in the event of an emergency.
It is designed to give our government entities guidance and direction on what and how to be most efficient in the event of manmade or natural disaster putting our citizens in peril. This plan also gives guidance for the care of our pets, information for shelters, feeding, medical aid and evacuation if necessary.
Also included is information on setting up a command post and public information officers, who will be in charge and contact information for assistance, be it local, county or state.
I pray we never need to enact this EOP; however, if we do, we have a written plan that gives our town guidance to minimize risk to our citizens, allowing us to get back to some normalcy in our lives in the event of a catastrophic incident.
All of the time and effort to bring this plan from a vague, out-of-date nine page document to this practical EOP has been truly appreciated.