EHCMA Hosts 2018 Hurricane Workshop At Pasadena Convention Center

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EHCMA hosted the 2018 EHCMA Industry Hurricane Workshop at the Pasadena Convention Center in Pasadena, TX on Wednesday, May 2, 2018.  The event was attended by over 230 people from various federal, state and local agencies including the U.S. Coast Guard, The National Weather Service, City of Pasadena Office of Emergency Management, Harris County Office of Emergency Management, various other emergency response agencies and representatives from EHCMA member companies.

The keynote speaker for the event was Harris County Judge Ed Emmett with special guests Jeff Wagner, Mayor of Pasadena, Bob Bradshaw, EHCMA Chairman and Jack Morman, Commissioner for Harris County Precinct Two.

Hurricane Harvey Lessons Learned

The event focused on lessons learned from Hurricane Harvey and came from discussions of Harvey by community and plant participants in six advisory panels to industry during their first meetings after Harvey: Bay Area Community Advisory Panel (BAYCAP), Citizen’s Advisory Council to La Porte Industry (LPCAC), Community Advisory Panel to Lyondell and Equistar (Channelview plant) (CAPLE), Deer Park Community Advisory Council (DPCAC), Galena Park-Jacinto City Community-Industry Partnership (GP-JC CIP), and Pasadena Citizens’ Advisory Council. There are ~110 plants in these 6 community advisory panels (CAPs), which are facilitated by Diane Sheridan, who compiled this summary and a more detailed report. A list of participating plants and the communities the CAP serves may be found in the CAP Directory at www.deerparkcac.org

  • Hurricane Harvey made landfall in Port Aransas as a Category 4 storm, then meandered exceptionally slowly up the Texas coast. It was not really a hurricane when it reached the Houston area and dumped ~40-50 inches of rain over 5+ days. In Harris County, it was a tropical storm whose rainfall intensity and duration caused flooding rather than the high wind and surge damage of major hurricanes. Whereas most bad floods have affected part of Harris County, Harvey affected all of this county and many more. Most plant hurricane plans are phased plans based on wind speeds and days from landfall, not flooding.
  • Before the storm hit, Harris County Judge Ed Emmett pre-applied for Harris County to be designated a federal disaster area. This allowed the state to move its resources, including equipment and state military personnel, closer to the county before the storm.
  • David Wade, the Harris County Industrial Liaison, operates the East Harris County Manufacturers Association (EHCMA) Hurricane Status Reporting System for EHCMA’s Emergency Management and Communications Committee. Plants provide information that is solely for emergency response coordinators (EMCs) in Harris County and east Harris County cities so the EMC has contact information for the site and knows whether plants in its jurisdiction have a ride-out crew on site. Not all plants took part in the system.
  • During the storm, the area south of I-10 and east of I-45 was without a functioning hospital for 72 hours. Most EHCMA member plants are in this area.

Handouts and PowerPoint Presentations For Download:

Dan Reiley – Hurricane Season Outlook – EHCMA

Navin Griffin – US Coast Guard Presentation

Frank Bengochea – The Evacuation Decision and its Effects on Industry

David Wade – Hurricane Status Reporting System and Credentialing

Industry hurricane workshop agenda

Harvey Lessons Learned 1-pg 4-10-18

Online Resources for Hurricane Preparedness

Houston/Galveston National Weather Service – Hurricane & Severe Weather Guide

Severe Weather Preparedness and Best Practices