Emergency management officials discuss disaster preparations

JONESBORO,AR (KAIT)- In the wake of the Oklahoma tornado, the Craighead County Office of Emergency Management hosted a class Tuesday on how to handle volunteers and donations following a disaster.

"A lot of people don't understand it's quitecomplicated to be able to coordinate and take care of all those resources," said David Moore, the Director of Emergency Managementfor Craighead Count.

Moore said this class is the first of many to help all coordinators prepare for any typeof disaster.

"They're bringing good information to us but also byhaving so many counties here we can talk between ourselves also and learn howother counties have handled some of these problems," Moore said.

The class on Tuesday focused on how to handle donationsand volunteers after a major disaster.

"Over thepast two days, a lot of the things we've been talking about we're seeing rightnow  out in Moore, Oklahoma," Moore said.

"It's an eye-opener, I hate that it happened tothose poor people in Moore, Oklahoma but it is an eye-opener to let us knowthat what can happen in a major disaster."

Moore said in the event of a disaster they consultorganizations like the Red Cross, Salvation Army, Food Bank of Northeast Arkansas and local faith-basedorganizations.

"In Arkansas we right now have volunteers standingby on alert- ready to respond should they be needed," said Pam Knapp- Carver,executive director of the northeast Arkansas chapter of the Red Cross.

Carver said their emergency response vehicle is on alert with two drivers if they are needed. Moore said he has already started re-assessing thecounty's emergency plan.

"Whathappened out there is just another re-enforcement that this is something weneed to do," Moore said.

Moore said although Jonesboro does not have anypublic storm shelters, he is pushing for a shelter to be in every school to protect the children.

"The ones that do not, we are pushing hard to tryto get funding to help them," he said.

If you would like to make a donation with the RedCross you can text "redcross" to 90999.

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