There are two main projects that fall under hazards and emergency planning: Natural Hazard Mitigation Plans and Emergency Operations Plans. For both, SNHPC works closely with the NH Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management to ensure consistency with State and local plans. While the two are distinctly separate documents, they both are interrelated, and prepare communities in the event of an emergency or disaster while working to potentially reduce damages before they occur.
Natural Hazard Mitigation Plans
SNHPC has been working with its member communities to develop Natural Hazard Mitigation Plans. A Hazard Mitigation Plan is designed to reduce or eliminate risk to people and property from a range of hazards including wildfires, earthquakes, hurricanes, winter storms, and flooding. The plan identifies the community's susceptibility and vulnerability to each hazard, essential facilities at risk, and proposes new strategies to potentially mitigate or reduce future damages. These plans were financed in part by FEMA through a grant from the New Hampshire Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management.
SNHPC has facilitated the development and update of Hazard Mitigation Plans for the following communities:
The Town of Candia developed their Hazard Mitigation Plan and updates through a separate consultant.
Emergency Operation Plans
Emergency Operation Plans (EOPs) are developed to comply with the National Incident Management System (NIMS) as developed by the Department of Homeland Security. EOPs identify local municipal departmental responsibilities in the event of an emergency, highlight community resources and shelters, establish chain of command, and response plans. Using guidelines developed by the New Hampshire Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, the SNHPC has offered to develop EOPs for member communities.
SNHPC has completed Emergency Operation Plans for the following communities:
Southern New Hampshire Region Community Preparedness Program (SNHRCPP)
The Southern New Hampshire Planning Commission in partnership with the City of Manchester has developed the Southern New Hampshire Region Community Preparedness Program (SNHRCPP) in response to the overwhelming need for community preparedness in our region and in our State. Since 2005, New Hampshire has experienced a destructive series of events, including floods, a major tornado and the most serious ice storm in its history in December 2008. Most recently, New Hampshire experienced an intense windstorm from February 25-26, 2010, which brought down trees and limbs, knocked out power to over 270,000 residents and caused major flooding, rivaling the floods of Mothers Day 2006. This storm was followed two weeks later by a noreaster, which caused more flooding, with the hardest hit areas in the southern part of the State.
From these recent disasters, it has become apparent that the need for community preparedness is greater than ever. Through the SNHRCPP, SNHPC and the City of Manchester hope to develop a regional framework and plan for increasing levels of community preparedness in our region. By addressing the need for community preparedness and planning on a regional level all of the communities will benefit from increased coordination and efficiency of resources
Please visit the SNHRCPP website for more information and resources on community preparedness and citizen preparedness.