Essay Sample on Homeland Security: Response and Recovery

Published: 2023-07-12
Essay Sample on Homeland Security: Response and Recovery
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Planning Disaster Homeland security
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1209 words
11 min read

Responding to a disaster requires certain elements. When one has a proper plan, they can organize resources effectively. The response actions that are undertaken either immediately, during, or after a hazard effect are designed at saving lives, minimizing economic harm, and easing suffering among people. When one is responding to an event, it is essential to organize the critical emergency amenities and first responders in the area of the disaster. It is possible to comprise a first wave of core emergency services like the police and firefighters. Information such as context and degree of disaster is required to make decisions and commence the allocation of resources.

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Information to Make Decisions and Begin Allocating Resources

One of the crucial information required before making decisions and beginning the allocation of resources is about the context. As such, certain parties need to be involved in evaluating the effect of the disaster. It entails an exploration of where there are the most severe effects, the number of people likely to be affected, and the number that are in serious need. Once this necessary information is available, it will be easy to develop a more detailed image of sector-by-sector needs and priorities through the utilization of a selection of tools such as social media, focus groups, and surveys of households (Alsubaie et al., 2015).

On the other hand, it will be crucial to determine information on the degree of disaster, the vulnerability of the area that has been affected, which is further influenced by the population density and specific conditions of the site. The situation of the site can entail its exposure to risky situations and the impacts of cascading disasters that occur from the interdependence of aspects of vital infrastructure. It is also crucial to determine the category of people who are in the disaster. The majority of them might be adults or children. By having this information, it will be quite easy to determine the nature of the resources to carry and even the people to undertake the rescue or evacuation (JIillson et al., 2019). Additionally, it will be crucial to determine the availability of health facilities that might be used as the initial evacuation area for victims of the disaster. In this way, one will be aware of the number of health resources to include, and this consists of the personnel available to cater to the needs of those affected. Besides, the human resources available will also be evaluated as their functions concerning relying on information about the disaster. It will also be crucial to ensure that every person in the department who is likely to offer relevant information to the media has all the necessary resources. As such, it will ensure that individuals have the skills and tools needed to do their job (Alsubaie et al., 2015). The digital connectivity of the people affected is also relevant to assess as it will provide the links needed between applications, systems, and objects in the disaster event. In this way, it will be easier to implement practical solutions.

Making Informed Estimation

Incomplete information cannot deter response activity from taking place. Informed estimation can be made from the incomplete data based on the nature of the disaster. For instance, when the disaster entails fire, then various fire brigades will have to be sent to that area. Valuation of the damage made as a result of the disaster will also be useful in this case. Through quantitative estimation, it will be possible to approximate human loss, physical damage, and damages that may have been made to the transport infrastructure as well as other economic losses. As such, this process can be referred to as mapping, and it will offer crucial information to assist in comprehending the disaster. Mapping depicts the magnitude of the anticipated hazard areas and can even be joined with knowledge about disaster management, such as evacuation routes and sites, among others (Scholz et al., 2018).

Experience can be fundamental when making informed estimation and assigning people to cater for the numerous features of the risk. As such, this includes the severity of the disaster and the capability to do something practical about the risk. It entails uncertainties regarding the disaster and any prior knowledge about it as well. As an expert, any form of warning signs can be handled as proof and thus a decision made. The aspect of using experience to make an estimation when there is inadequate information is through looking at past hazards. It is, however, necessary to note that prior experience is unavailable for numerous contentious risks since they entail new technologies (Eiser et al., 2012). For other hazards, the element of the experience is debatable. However, the most vital issue here is for one to gather any relevant information from an experience that may assist them in estimating the current disaster.

Furthermore, the probable exposure to every hazard in the aggregate number of people or valuable things should be determined. One should further analyze the way contacts gather over time. For instance, a single exposure over a short duration can have different impacts from those that occur as a result of exposure of a similar amount of hazard in numerous episodes (Scholz et al., 2018). Thus, when this has been determined, then it will be easier to estimate the number of people who have been affected and the duration of the effects as well.

The distribution of the disaster is another critical element that can be used to decide the catastrophe when there is limited information. One can determine the group of people that is least and most affected by the disaster. In this case, it will be necessary to analyze the demographic information of the region where the disaster has occurred (Eiser et al., 2012). After this has been determined, it will be easier to make an informed estimation of the significant elements.

The paper has explored information needed to make decisions and commence the allocation of resources during a disaster. The context, degree of disaster, and vulnerability of the area are some of the crucial details required for resources to be allocated. Also, informed estimation concerning significant factors can be made when there is incomplete information through experience and the nature of the disaster. Also, the likely exposure to every risk is essential concerning the total number of individuals and should be determined to guide in making an estimation.


Alsubaie, A., Alutaibi, K., & Marti, J. (2015, May). Resources allocation in emergency response using an interdependencies simulation environment. In 2015 IEEE Canada International Humanitarian Technology Conference (IHTC2015) (pp. 1-4). IEEE.

Eiser, J. R., Bostrom, A., Burton, I., Johnston, D. M., McClure, J., Paton, D., ... & White, M. P. (2012). Risk interpretation and action: A conceptual framework for responses to natural hazards. International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction, 1, 5-16.

Jillson, I. A., Clarke, M., Allen, C., Waller, S., Koehlmoos, T., Mumford, W., ... & Trant, A. (2019). Improving the science and evidence base of disaster response: a policy research study. BMC health services research, 19(1), 274.

Scholz, S., Knight, P., Eckle, M., Marx, S., & Zipf, A. (2018). Volunteered Geographic Information for Disaster Risk Reduction-The Missing Maps Approach and Its Potential within the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. Remote Sensing, 10(8), 1239.

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