Houston News


Mock Hurricane Drill

Mock Hurricane Drill

Just in time for Tropical Storm Dorian, local emergency management officials are brushing up on their preparedness.

More than 100 participants are involved with Wednesday's mock scenario at Houston TranStar.

“Category 4 Hurricane Polly made landfall near Freeport and caused heavy rain, flooding and wind damage to downtown Houston, the ship channel and southeast Harris County.  The storm also forced the evacuation of more than two million area residents, including 20,000 evacuees now sheltered in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.”

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett says the role play is essential for keeping first responders sharp when a real emergency crops up.

"Ike, if you remember, it was going in one place, then another place, and then another place.  That's why we have to have so many different areas involved, because storms move at the end," Emmett told reporters.  "So we have to make sure that everybody is participating."

The mock hurricane allows officials to identify ways to improve during a large scale emergency.

"Galveston, Harris and Brazoria counties, we all need to know what the other one is doing," says Emmett.  "I never want to call an evacuation in Harris County until Galveston has been able to clear the area, likewise in Brazoria.  So we need to know that timing, and that's what this Joint Information is about."

Among those taking part:  Homeland Security, FBI and Coast Guard.

"Our relationships across these jurisdictions, with emergency managers and first responders, is critical, those relationships have to remain strong," says Coast Guard Commander Brian Penoyer.   "That's why it is so important to invest the time and energy; it’s the most important investment we can make."


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