Red River Parish is subject to the effects of many disasters that cover a wide spectrum of types and magnitudes. Disaster conditions can result from natural phenomena (tornados, floods, winter storms, droughts, fires, etc.) or manmade and technological incidents occurring from transportation of hazardous materials, explosions, train derailments, aircraft disasters, building collapses, terrorist incidents, etc.

Red River Parish OHSEP Mission

  • To develop and deliver disaster plans & programs to protect life and property.
  • To Mobilize, direct, coordinate and utilize resources.
  • To coordinate and direct recovery and restoration operations.
  • To assist government, volunteers, business, industry, education, medical and other units with their emergency plans & programs.
  • To coordinate emergency services to mitigate, prepare, respond and recover from disasters.
  • To coordinate local, state, and federal plans, programs, warnings, communications
    and public information within the emergency operations center in case of a disaster.

Emergency Operations Plan

An emergency develops because of a situation’s impact upon individuals. Under the Louisiana Disaster Act of 1993 and the Robert T. Stafford Act, each jurisdiction must continually update the Emergency Operations Plan (EOP). The focus of the plan is for the welfare of all citizens in Red River Parish. This plan defines actions necessary to provide the best possible programs to protect life and property. It also provides positive actions to deal with the adverse affects of a disaster. The EOP outlines government, private, and volunteer procedures during the four phases of emergency management.

Comprehensive Emergency Management

The EOP is an all-inclusive plan concerned with all types of hazards that Red River Parish may face. OHSEP employs Comprehensive Emergency Management (CEM), a planning system of four phases: Mitigation, Preparedness, Response, and Recovery. CEM is a cyclical process with all four steps working in harmony. No single step can function fully without the other three.

MITIGATION is defined as activities that eliminate or reduce the impact of a disaster. Some examples are building codes, flood plain management, insurance, building elevations, designation or shelters, etc.

PREPAREDNESS is defined as activities that develop response capabilities and determine resource needs in case an emergency occurs. Planning, exercises, training, public education, and warning systems are examples of preparedness actions.

RESPONSE is defined as activities taken during a disaster to reduce casualties and damages and bring on the final phase – Recovery. Some examples of these activities are evacuation, search and rescue, triage and treatment, and restoration of utilities.

RECOVERY is defined as the process of returning the community to normalcy. It is both a short-term and long-term process. Short-term operations restore vital services such as water, electricity, and gas. Long-term recovery focuses on restoring the area to its pre-event status or improving upon that status. Temporary housing, restoration of governmental services, reconstruction of damaged property are recovery issues.

Shane G. Hubbard