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Danbury Housing Partnership

Danbury Housing Partnership

Paul Estefan
Director

Address:

155 Deer Hill Avenue
Danbury, CT 06810

Telephone:

203-797-4630

Description
    The Office of Emergency Management has completed transitioning this year from the former Office of Civil Preparedness to Emergency Management. The general public has become very familiar with the concept of Emergency Management in recent years.

    The onset of terrorist activities within our Homeland has redefined emergency response planning on all levels of government. The impact of Hurricane Katrina has exposed areas of concern in emergency planning. The challenge to be proactive in our approach to emergency response to potential events, both natural and manmade, is of an utmost priority. Emergency Management has reviewed the City’s Emergency Operations Plan this year and received a Letter from Commissioner Thomas from the State of Connecticut Department of Emergency Management and Homeland Security approving the Plan.

    Working in conjunction with our Emergency Operations partners: Police, Fire, EMS, Health, Public Utilities, Public Works and the Red Cross the Department continues to coordinate disaster plans. Our primary mission continues to be the development of these plans, protocols and procedures to assure the safety of our citizens and instill their confidence in our abilities. Based on our mission the Department has evaluated core competencies that Danbury’s response community adheres to. The threat of terrorist attack, natural disaster, pandemic episodes and additional concerns of nuclear, biological, chemical and civil disturbance responses have increased the pressure on Emergency Management Planning and the Department with input from local, State and National agencies has made significant strides in preparedness.

Successes
    This year the department collaborated with other State and Local Emergency Management Centers to conduct a Points of Distribution drill. This drill continues to strengthen our emergency response plans in the event we need to setup Points of Distribution Centers to supply food, water and other supplies to our residents.

    The City’s Hazmat team responded on September 11, 2007 to 71 Padanaram Road regarding an Anthrax incident. The leader of the team was Reynoldo Rodriguez of the City of Danbury Emergency Medical Services Coordinator and Hazmat Team. The Team did an outstanding job in isolating the house and garage from other residences in the area. The Emergency Call Notification System, which was part of last year’s budget has proven to be an invaluable tool in notifying our residents of natural and manmade hazards. This State of the Art technology has been used to notify residents, businesses and emergency responders as to the threat of an impending hazard or road closures, which was the case in the Anthrax incident.

    The Housatonic Council of Elected Officials video conferencing system was completed last September and has been used for conferences between local City and Town Departments in the Housatonic Valley as well as for training personal in the Incident Command System. Having the instructor in our Emergency Operations Center allowed the students to participate in the class without having to travel to the training site. The Emergency Operations Center continues to host a local group of HAM radio Operator’s. These dedicated individuals are capable of sending and receiving messages world-wide if necessary. Through the years these operators have been a reliable source of information in times of disasters. On July 19, 2008 the City of Danbury Ham Operators, at the request of the Director of Emergency Management, conducted a drill with other Emergency Operations Centers in the State. This three hour drilled showed us the capabilities of the equipment and skills of our Ham Operators in contacting other communities in Connecticut in the event Danbury loses all other types of communications. The drill was very successful.

    This year the City received from the State of Connecticut’s Department of Health part of the Ottilie W Lundgren Mobile Field Hospital. This $1.5 million dollar Field Hospital is currently being staged here in Danbury for our use as well as other Towns and Cities in our region.

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