New post-disaster re-entry system begins in Georgia

Goal of 5-phase plan for safe, orderly process after disaster

By Roxy Tyler - Web producer
Tiffany Santana via CNN

WOODBINE, Ga. - During this hurricane season, Camden County emergency managers have implemented a new plan for first responders to enter areas hit hard by disasters such as hurricanes in Georgia.

The new quick re-entry system includes five phases to allow orderly and safe response to hurricane ravaged areas and other disasters.

Phase 1 is the initial re-entry when teams from state and local response agencies will gain access to damaged areas in order to render them safe for first responders to follow and perform life safety operations.

Under the new process for re-entry, permits will be required for phases 2 and 3. Organizations, businesses and  non-profits wanting access would have to get permission through the state instead of local emergency management agencies.

Contractors and others in the affected areas will be required to show re-entry permits to proceed.

Phase 2 will be emergency response and life safety workforce re-entry with personnel conducting life safety operations in impacted areas.

Phase 3 will consist of essential public and private sector personnel, mainly people who can restore essential operations, services and commerce in support of re-entry by the general public. This would include fuel and food distributors, non-emergency medical facilities such as pharmaceutical providers, media, medical facility support staff and local government essential workers.

Phase 4 will be when local residents, property owners and business owners from the impacted area will be allowed to re-enter. Everyone falling under these categories must show valid government-issued photo identification, proof of residence or ownership of a business in the affected area. No state disaster re-entry permits will be issued for this phase.

Phase 5 will include limited public access to Camden County officials who will determine when areas or portions of an area are safe for re-entry. Restrictions may remain in place for a period of time limiting access to daylight hours.

Camden County, along with cities of Kingsland, St. Marys, Woodbine and Kings Bay operate under a unified re-entry plan.

During an evacuation, re-entry phases will be communicated through CodeRED, a program in which residents must register.

Read more about the new Georgia Re-Entry Standard Operating Guide Here.


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