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DEPARTMENT OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT (DEM)

January 2021 – December 2023
  1. TSUNAMI HAZARD SIGNS
    DEM installed Tsunami Hazard Area signs across O‘ahu including 175 signs at beach parks and 144 signs on Oʻahu roadways. The signs are intended to increase public awareness of areas at risk of experiencing direct impacts from tsunamis.
  2. ASSISTANCE TO MAUI COUNTY
    DEM coordinated assistance to Maui County immediately following the August 2023 wildfires. Personnel from seven City and County of Honolulu departments directly assisted with functions including, but not limited to, firefighting, search and rescue, law enforcement, first responder peer support, incident management and public information.
  3. MAYOR’S WILDFIRE RISK ASSESSMENT AND PREPAREDNESS WORKING GROUP
    Coordinate and co-lead the Mayor’s Wildfire Risk Assessment and Preparedness working group. This working group maximizes cross-sector collaboration to identify and implement short-, mid- and long-term wildfire risk mitigation activities, enhance response plans and capabilities, identify opportunities for public engagement and quantify necessary funding and sources to support these activities.
  4. ESTABLISH ONLINE DISASTER SUPPORT TRAINING
    DEM established online training for City disaster support workers in multiple functional areas. This training program was for City employees who work in an office or other non-emergency functions day to day, but during large-scale emergencies, are called upon to support disaster response. The online training increases accessibility for City employees so they can be better prepared to serve the public during disasters.
  5. AGREEMENTS WITH NON-PROFITS FOR COORDINATED SERVICES DURING EMERGENCIES
    DEM established agreements with non-profit organizations including the Hawaiʻi Food Bank and American Red Cross to enable better coordinated services during emergencies. Emergency management requires coordination not only within government but with non-profits and private sector partners. Having pre-established agreements ensures better coordination before, during, and after disasters.
  6. ESTABLISH STANDARDIZED ASSESSMENT METHODOLOGY FOR EMERGENCY FACILITIES
    DEM established a standardized assessment methodology to quickly and cost-effectively identify facilities least vulnerable to hurricane damage that can be used to provide shelter to the public during emergencies. DEM applied the methodology, known as Best Available Refuge Area (BARA), to more than 200 public school and park buildings on Oʻahu. The results of these assessments informed DEM as to which facilities could be opened to the public for shelter during hurricane threats.
  7. COORDINATED COVID-19 VACCINATION, TESTING AND ISOLATION/QUARANTINE
    Coordinated multiagency efforts for COVID vaccination, testing, isolation/quarantine services, and public information to serve the people of Oʻahu while coordinating policies and mitigation actions to protect the City workforce.
  8. ESTABLISHED FOOD “PODS” WORKING WITH HAWAI‘I FOOD BANK
    In partnership with the Hawai‘i Food Bank, began implementation of “pre-covery PODs” in which emergency food rations are stored in strategic locations across the island. Target areas are those communities that have a higher likelihood of becoming isolated during disasters.
  9. COORDINATED RESPONSE TO MARCH 2021 NORTH SHORE FLOODING
    Coordinated the response to large scale emergencies including the March 2021 flooding on Oʻahu’s North Shore and Windward areas and the December 2021 Kona Low across the island.
  10. IMPLEMENTED ON-LINE INFORMATION AND WORKFLOW MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
    DEM implemented an online information and workflow management system to enhance remote working and coordination capabilities that allow for computer assisted launch and implementation of emergency response plans, as well as providing city departments, key decision makers and first responders with a powerful tool to communicate and collaborate seamlessly in a virtual Emergency Operations Center environment.