SAN FRANCISCO -- Military members and medical personnel attended a peer-to-peer medical exchange and senior leadership seminar as part of San Francisco Fleet Week 2015, Oct. 7.
SFFW 15’ is a weeklong event that blends a unique training and education program, bringing together key civilian emergency responders and Naval crisis-response forces to exchange best practices on humanitarian assistance disaster relief with particular emphasis on defense support to civil authorities.
The seminars brought together leaders from local, regional, and federal agencies, as well as political and diplomatic leaders to broaden working relationships and encourage cooperative emergency planning in humanitarian assistance and disaster relief efforts.
Anne Kronenberg, the director of Emergency Management in San Francisco, said she thinks Fleet Week is an important part of staying prepared for the next big disaster.
“San Francisco is leading the nation with Fleet Week, because we know when the big earthquake hits, we won’t have everything available to take care of it ourselves,” Kronenberg said. “Right now we are just getting to know each other beforehand because it’s better to be prepared and know how we work together than meeting at the time of the crisis.”
On April 25, 2015, Nepal was struck by a magnitude 7.8 earthquake, known as the Gorkha Earthquake, killing more than 9,000 people and injuring nearly 23,000 more. Major General Kishore Jung Bahadur Rana, the director of the Nepal Military Medical Service, spoke about the importance of preparing for the worst during a natural disaster.
“The senior leadership seminar has been very informative to me, but I feel like there is much more to learn,” Rana said. “The more prepared and practiced you can be before disaster strikes, the more effectively you will mitigate the situation.”
Steve Mogan, an operations officer with the defense coordinating office, department of defense, said that Fleet Week plays a large role in ensuring the military and San Francisco can work well together in the event of a natural disaster.
“San Francisco Fleet Week has been an excellent opportunity to practice and discuss the different procedures and operations that would need to occur to get the military involved in a humanitarian assistance and disaster relief effort,” Mogan said. “It really allows us all to get on the same page, solidify the bond that we have and discuss new tactics in preparation for that next big disaster.”
Fleet Week 2015 ensures that the city of San Francisco and the Navy crisis-response forces are more prepared to conduct humanitarian assistance and recovery procedures in the event that disaster strikes.Military leaders discuss humanitarian assistance preparation during Fleet Week 2015