Hazard Mitigation Plan
1. What is hazard mitigation?
Hazard Mitigation is the effort to reduce the loss of life and property by lessening the impact of disasters.
2. Why do we need a hazard mitigation plan?
Through projects, programs, and policies the County of Ellis is constantly creating ways to protect the County from hazards and recover from disasters quickly. Hazard mitigation creates safer communities by reducing the loss of life and property damage. When the Hazard Mitigation Action Plan (HazMAP) is complete, it will include a list of specific actions and goals for city departments within the next five years. These actions will lessen the impact of hazards on individuals and our community. HazMAP also includes information that the public can use to prepare themselves for hazards.
Readiness is a partnership, and you play an important role in making sure hazards don’t become disasters. Another partner is the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), who requires local jurisdictions to revise their HazMAP and obtain federal approval every five years in order to remain eligible for mitigation grant funding. Garland’s plan is up for renewal in 2017. FEMA also requires the public to participate in the planning process.
3. What are some examples of mitigation actions?
- Educating citizens regarding the dangers of extreme heat and cold
- Elevation of structures in flood-prone areas
- Erosion and drainage control to reduce flooding
- Line Maintenance Program to reduce electric service interruptions
- Mutual aid agreements to reduce response and recovery times
- Prohibiting development in high-hazard areas
- Safe rooms
- Trimming Program to reduce the potential for trees and branches to damage power lines
- Update construction codes for improved structural stability
- Water distribution system improvements to access more water in a drought
4. What is the planning process for hazard mitigation?
Local hazard mitigation planning forms the foundation for a community’s long-term strategy to reduce disaster losses and break the cycle of disaster damage, reconstruction, and repeated damage in the next disaster. The planning process consists of:
- Organizing Resources -This includes identifying and organizing Planning Team Members and Stakeholders, as well as securing needed technical expertise and authority to implement mitigation goals. Review of existing plans for inclusion and necessary updates were also accomplished during this step.
- Assessing Risks - The Planning Team identified hazards that effect Garland and the potential risks they pose through Hazard and Public Surveys as well as Community Impact and Capabilities Assessments.
- Developing a Mitigation Plan - Based on an understanding of risk and impact, the Planning Team set priorities and developed mitigation actions and strategies for avoiding or minimizing the effects of disasters in Garland.
- Implementing Plan and Monitor Progress - Garland can bring the mitigation plan to live in a variety of ways, from implementing specific mitigation projects to changing aspects of day-to-day organizational operations.
5. What are some hazards identified by the County’s Hazard Mitigation Action Planning Team?
- Biological Event
- Communications Failure/Infrastructure Failure
- Expansive Soil
- Extreme Heat
- Power Outages
- Severe Thunderstorms/Wind/Lightning
- Severe Winter Weather
- Terrorism/Cyber Attacks