Examining the Need for Standardization of the Initial Damage Assessment Process in Louisa County, Virginia [open pdf - 191KB]
"A recent earthquake centered in Louisa County, Virginia, required County officials to undertake an extensive and prolonged initial damage assessment process. The problem was that the Louisa County Department of Fire and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) did not have an established system for conducting these assessments initially caused errors in the process. The action research method was used to fulfill the purpose of this research, which was to develop a tool for Louisa County to conduct consistent and accurate initial damage assessments in the future. Literature review, a questionnaire and personal interviews were used to answer the following questions: 1) Why should localities perform initial damage assessments? 2) What tools are other localities using? 3) What elements do these tools have in common? and 4) What tools would benefit Louisa County in future damage assessment techniques? Results demonstrated why departments should perform initial damage assessments, that standardized policies, procedures and forms are used by other departments, with some elements in common, and that Louisa County would benefit from adopting such policies and procedures. Based upon the research results, a recommendation was made for Louisa to implement a standardized process for initial damage assessment, to include standardization of paperwork and data intake."
United States Fire Administration: http://www.usfa.fema.gov/