PRDPC wraps up National Incident workshop

Participants in the five day training session for various agencies of the government that was conducted by the Pacific Regional Disaster Preparedness Center at the Army Reserve Training Center Conference Room, and concluded yesterday. [photo: Jeff Hayner]

The Pacific Regional Disaster Preparedness Center (PRDPC) that was contracted to come out to the Pacific Rim to instruct members from various first responder agencies in the fine points of the National Incident Management Systems — in order to help them comply with the Homeland Security Presidential Directives (HSPD) 5 & 8 — began last Friday May 4 and concluded yesterday afternoon at the Army Reserve Conference Room in Tafuna.

Samoa News spoke with Sonny Maguire, one of the trainers from PRDPC, a group based in Hawaii, who conducted the five day class.

Maguire noted that “our company was actually a dream between Admiral Schultz and Senator Daniel Inouye... it was their hope that Pacific Islanders would learn to instruct Pacific Islanders in these matters, so that there is a relationship between islanders in this area.

“In the past, training was provided by mainland companies, and they had a hard time relating to what was actually happening in the Pacific Rim. Culturally, we are aware of what is going on. We began last Friday, instructing the Department of Public Safety, Department of Health, Department of Education, Harbor Security and Department of Homeland Security, in the Incident Command Systems 100, 200, 300 and 400.”

Maguire went on to say that it is all about learning how to utilize your resources and managerial skills better during any type of man-made or natural disaster.

“On this final day of instruction, which is Incident Command System 400, it takes us up to the higher level of Multi Agency Coordination and it involves more of a natural disaster, such as what happened here in American Samoa during the tsunami.”

“We are here to share the tools of management,” he said. Trainers for the five classes, Sonny Maguire and Erica Adams from the PRDPC, stated that they would like to thank Esther A. Savusa-Savini who is the Training Planning Coordinator with American Samoa Department of Homeland Security and TEMCO for coordinating the five day class. “Without her assistance, we would not be able to be here and we appreciate her very much,” said PRCPC Trainers Maguire and Adams.

Samoa News asked one of the participants to share what they took away from the five days of training. “This training really helped me prioritize my objectives during a disaster, whether it’s man-made or a natural disaster. It also provided me with knowledge of the chain of command, and how to report during an emergency,” said the participant, a female government employee.


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