ITE Journal July 2018 - 30

Preparedness for Continued Operations of
Transportation Agencies

Lauren Cochran

Transportation infrastructure is one of the critical components in
the safe and efficient movement of people and goods. During an
emergency such as flooding or hurricane winds, it is even more
important to keep this infrastructure in good shape so that people
can safely evacuate if the need arises. Transportation agencies
including transit agencies located in coastal areas have developed
hurricane preparedness plans to safeguard the agency infrastructure-including both human and physical assets-so that normal
operations can continue or be resumed immediately after the storm
event. These activities include, or should include:
� Update emergency staff list every year prior to hurricane season
with the most current contact information;
� Plan for and set up contracts so that emergency personnel on
duty during and immediately after the storm have a safe place to
work and rest with food, water, and other necessary amenities;
� Plan for safeguarding of agency assets (vehicle fleet and heavy
equipment) both critical to recovery and normal operations
of agency;
� Develop communication protocols (including an order of
succession) to provide clear information to all stakeholders;
� Plan for extended duration power failures;
� Plan for fueling and refueling of vehicles during storm
and recovery;

An entrance to River Oaks is flooded by Hurricane Harvey on
August 27, 2017.
30

J ul y 2018

i te jo urn al

Oseeola County EOC

Hurricane preparedness broadly consists of agency-wide, regionwide, and/or statewide activities performed in coordination with
multiple stakeholders to maintain continued operations prior to,
during, and after the storm, minimize the impact of storm on
populations and physical assets, and recover from the impacts
of the storm. In Texas, the specific policies, programs, and other
measures vary from region to region since Texas is constitutionally
prohibited from statewide enforcement of any statewide measures.
In other words, local jurisdictions have the authority to enact
pre-and post-mitigation measures including calls for volunteers or
mandatory evacuations.
The Louisiana State Emergency Operations Center during a hurricane
fury statewide exercise.
� Develop a priority roadway network for debris clearance that
serves emergency medical facilities, evacuation centers, and
other first responder locations;
� Coordination with other agencies in the region when setting up
contracts so that if same contractor is serving multiple agencies,
resources do not become an issue.

Preparedness for Evacuation Operations
The National Hurricane Program, in cooperation with state and
local emergency departments of coastal communities, conducts
hurricane evacuation studies to develop evacuation zones (based on
geographical location and potential for impact from a given storm),
identify and assess vulnerable facilities and populations, and
develop evacuation clearance times for several hurricane impact
scenarios. The studies use established evacuation routes (including
contraflow routes if applicable), most recent estimates of population
for each evacuation scenario, and population behavior data for the
study area to estimate clearance times. The evacuation scenarios
are developed in coordination with local and state emergency staff
and are based on expected impact of the storm in terms of areas to
be impacted and intensity to which these areas would be impacted.
The estimated clearance times for evacuation are then used in
developing timelines (H-X-Y) for calling mandatory evacuations
of an area. Here H is expected landfall time, X is the estimated
clearance time, and Y is a number decided by emergency managers
based on prevailing storm intensity, path, and local needs.
In addition, agencies develop procedures and policies to
maintain evacuation routes in operational conditions during
hurricane season (i.e., work zone closures should be managed
proactively along evacuation routes). If a state or community
has established use of contraflow operations as part of their
evacuation network, special resources are usually set-aside at the
beginning of the hurricane season to assist with successful and safe
contraflow operations.



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of ITE Journal July 2018

ITE Journal July 2018 - Cover1
ITE Journal July 2018 - Cover2
ITE Journal July 2018 - 3
ITE Journal July 2018 - 4
ITE Journal July 2018 - 5
ITE Journal July 2018 - 6
ITE Journal July 2018 - 7
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ITE Journal July 2018 - 50
ITE Journal July 2018 - Cover3
ITE Journal July 2018 - Cover4
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https://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ITE/G100155_ITE_December2018
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