This has been a very busy day, with me being Mrs. Domestic — driving, shopping, cleaning, cooking…. I also attended a drill working out the bugs in a neighborhood emergency preparedness plan. It was fascinating, and raised a question I wanted to ask of you.
But before I get there, I have to share a link to an article that is one of the best, most even-handed, intelligent, rational, appealing arguments in favor of Free Speech and against the censorship that hides behind the claim that no one should ever be offended — especially Muslims, feminists, minorities, etc. I’ve shared the article with everyone I can think of and I hope you do the same.
And now my question:
The neighborhood emergency preparedness system is based upon a pyramidal flow, with block captains, who are on the ground, reporting to neighborhood captains, who are in a staging area. The neighborhood captains write down all the information coming in (trapped people and injuries) and then they relay it to the medical team (mostly retired doctors and nurses) and the Community Emergency Response Training team (with both these latter teams also at the staging area) who then communicate with the town and county emergency services.
Things went smoothly enough at the drill, with people working hard and mostly knowing their stuff. The drill was useful insofar as it revealed holes and raised questions. One of the questions related to the fact that the neighborhood captains were writing everything down on paper and passing it on up the chain. It was a lovely day but, even with the sun shining, an occasional gust of wind would blow the papers around, causing a certain amount of confusion. The wind made us realize that a real emergency might not happen on a lovely, sunny day with only a light breeze blowing. Instead, it could happen in the middle of a wet, gusty storm.
So here’s my question for you: Do any of you have experience with a field situation in which you have to write down information and pass it on up the line? We’ve figured out that covered plastic boxes can be used to store the papers before they’re in use or while they’re waiting to be passed along, but we don’t know how to deal with the time during which people are writing things down. It’s virtually impossible to write on wet paper. Any suggestions?