Lessons Learned from the 2004 Atlantic Hurricane Season: How This Highly Active Year Helped Jacksonville, Florida, Build a Better Emergency Response System
In Jacksonville, FL, firefighters, sheriff deputies, and many civilian city employees have been trained in disaster response. In particular, some city employees have been trained as call takers to serve during disasters or other peak-time situations. The city has developed a special needs database so that this group can receive necessary services in a timely fashion. The Special Needs group includes those who are homebound, dependent upon electricity to power oxygen dispensers or other life-saving equipment, or dialysis patients. The city has developed a plan for evacuating special needs individuals to special shelters. Jacksonville has contracted with private contractors to assist in debris removal operations. The city has trained volunteers to supplement first responders during an emergency.