COLUMBIA, SC – May 12, 2014 – Governor Nikki Haley today participated in a tabletop exercise with the South Carolina Emergency Management Division (SCEMD) and the South Carolina Emergency Response Team (SERT) in preparation for the upcoming hurricane season. This type of interactive exercise allows Gov. Haley, SCEMD, and the agencies that form SERT to review the South Carolina Hurricane Plan in a scenario-based setting and discuss necessary actions to be taken in the event of hurricane landfall.
To watch video of the event, click here: http://goo.gl/wkC123.
“Every year we do this hurricane exercise with state agencies to make sure that we are ready, and every year we have made it more extensive, and have added another layer,” said Gov. Haley. “As always, South Carolina is ready and prepared for the upcoming hurricane season and the real-time scenarios that we ran through today are a major reason why we can say that. Today was about doing everything we can to keep our citizens safe.”
“This hurricane table top exercise with Gov. Haley is Team South Carolina’s way to ensure the citizens of our state are taken care of during a natural disaster,” said Maj. Gen. Robert E. Livingston, Jr., the Adjutant General for South Carolina. “It’s about being able to assist the counties and first responders, enabling them to prepare their residents and provide necessary assistance from the onset of a weather event through the recovery phase.”
“We’ve been fortunate to not have experienced the direct landfall of a hurricane for many years,” said SCEMD Director Kim Stenson, “That kind of luck can’t hold forever so we create and update emergency plans with all of the state agencies. Coming together as one team with the governor leading, we’re looking at those plans and discussing what all of our responsibilities are before, during and after a major hurricane.”
“Major disasters begin and end in local communities and at home. A hurricane would drain our resources very quickly; we would need state support to help the response. We hope not to use these plans, but if we do exercises and discussions like this one helps us all be as ready as we can be,” said Sam Hodge, the Georgetown County Emergency Management Director.
The governor’s tabletop will be followed by a live, full-scale statewide hurricane exercise with multiple venues during the first week of June, which is 2014 South Carolina Hurricane Awareness Week (June 1-7).