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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 217953 Find in a Library
Title: Systems Approach to Long-Term Urban Disaster Recovery
Journal: Journal of Security Education  Volume:1  Issue:4  Dated:2006  Pages:145-157
Author(s): Judith Steele; Nirja Verma
Date Published: 2006
Page Count: 13
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This paper discusses how a city can assess its risk for various types of disasters, as well as actions it can take based on the findings of such an assessment.
Abstract: The experience of New Orleans and the State of Louisiana in preparing for and responding to Hurricane Katrina highlights the need for local governments to develop their own emergency preparedness and recovery strategies, rather than expecting the Federal Government to rescue them. In major catastrophic events, such as Katrina, the demand for resources from all levels of government (Federal, State, and local) is likely to exceed the collective capacity to provide the needed resources. In such cases, the ability to redeploy existing "nondisaster" resources in innovative ways and lead recovery at the local level becomes particularly important. In using local, customary resources in innovative ways, localities must integrate disaster-related management with the routine management of the city's services and infrastructure. In order to integrate routine and emergency functions for local institutions, this paper proposes three principles that can guide local governments. First, local governments should focus on the consequences of disasters rather than their causes. Second, local governments should learn from previous disasters in order to address imminent or immediate disasters. Third, local governments should use a systems approach in recovery. An example of a systems approach to recovery planning is presented in Los Angeles' strategy for recovery from an earthquake. This is followed by a presentation of guidelines for assessing the adaptability of the existing system of city services and infrastructure for responding to various types of disasters. The development of strategies for even a few possible disaster scenarios can reduce recovery response time and limit the adverse impacts of the disaster on the overall welfare of the community. 5 tables and 21 references
Main Term(s): Domestic Preparedness
Index Term(s): Disaster procedures; Security systems; Systems analysis; Urban area studies; Urban planning
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