Four Corners Emergency Management

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2012 Conference

The Four Corners Emergency Management conference was held on Dec 5, 6, and 7, 2012 at the Radisson Hotel in Branson, Mo. The conference had an attendance of over 100 attendees and focused on the Joplin, Mo tornado. The F5 tornado occurred on May 22, 2011 and destroyed millions of dollars worth of homes and businesses and killed 162 people.

The first day of conference was a seminar by the National Weather Service offices from Springfield, Mo, Tulsa, Ok, and Wichita, Ks. The NWS talked about warning system challenges, enhancing responses, the hazards vs impacts and new ways of watches and warning being put out in the future.

The next speaker was Tom Erickson, PIO from the Johnson County Kansas Sheriff's Office. He talked about Social Media and Its Importance to Emergency Management. Social media will be at any disaster through cell phones, email, twitter, face book or any other ways of communicating with each other.

The second day of conference begun with Angela Copple with EMACC who spoke about Mutual Aid and Lynn Onstot, PIO with the city of Joplin who spoke on Emergency Public Communications. The group then broke into two groups and were spilt up to each discuss mutual aid and PIO. The groups each had one hour for each session and to write how they would handle the situations. After lunch, each group was given time to put their efforts out and discuss the new or old ways to handle emergency situations.

The next speaker was Angie Besendorfer, Asst Superintendent from the Joplin Schools. Angie talked about how the school district handled the Joplin tornado from helping transport injured people, to the help of locating their students through school resources, to help with the recovery of information from the damaged or destroyed schools, to help with the handling of donated products from across the nation. The school district was instrumental in getting their schools back up and beginning school on time for the 2011-2012 year.

The third day of the conference was a class on Cyberterrorism by Troy Campbell, Program Director for the Kansas City Terrorism Early Warning Group. The group learned why emergency management should be concerned about cyberterrorism and how to deal with it.

The next speaker was Wade Witmer, the Deputy Director, who spoke about IPAWS, what is it and how it will effect emergency management.

The 2013 conference will be held on Dec 4, 5, and 6th, 2013 at the Raddison Hotel in Branson, Mo.

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