The Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP) continues to coordinate support for states expected to be impacted by Hurricane Dorian. Following requests from South Carolina and Florida, Governor John Bel Edwards has approved the deployment of State Fire Marshal staff and emergency services partners to assist with Hurricane Dorian response.
The Incident Support Team (IST), which specializes in disaster deployment operations and logistics, has departed Baton Rouge to offer their expertise in organizing and managing numerous search and rescue teams responding to multiple missions at once.
In support of these missions, several of our local firefighters have deployed to assist. Fire Chief Thomas Stone has been deployed to South Carolina, and Fire Training Officer Earl Borden and Deputy Fire Chief Mike Moolekamp have been deployed to Florida.
There is an established state-to-state assistance program used to coordinate support through GOHSEP. The Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC) offers assistance during governor-declared states of emergency or disaster through a responsive, straightforward system that allows states to send personnel, equipment, and commodities to assist with response and recovery efforts in other states. EMAC establishes a firm legal foundation for sharing resources between states. Once the conditions for providing assistance to a requesting state have been set, the terms constitute a legally binding agreement. The EMAC legislation solves the problems of liability and responsibilities of cost and allows for credentials, licenses, and certifications to be honored across state lines.