Peacetime Employment of the Military - The Army's Role in Domestic Disaster Relief
Individual study project
ARMY WAR COLL STRATEGIC STUDIES INST CARLISLE BARRACKS PA
Pagination or Media Count:
On April 18, 1906, the most destructive earthquake to ever hit the United States struck the city of San Francisco leaving over 350,000 homeless and a great portion of the city in rubble. The municipal government, unable to handle a disaster of such magnitude, turned to the only remaining organization capable of assisting, the military forces of the Regular Army. The Army responded immediately assisted in fire fighting, patrolled the city to guard against looting, and provided food, clothing, and shelter to the many homeless. The Armys quick and decisive actions during this great disaster would serve as a precedence for military relief operations in the future. Following a detailed review of the Armys role in the great San Francisco earthquake of 1906, this research project addresses the evolution of the Federal disaster response system with emphasis on how the Department of Defense DoD, and in particular the Army, is integrated into that system. A review of statutory authorities and how they have evolved serves as the start point. This is followed by an explanation of the roles and responsibilities of the Federal Emergency Management Agency FEMA how it came into being and describes its relationship with DoD and other Federal Agencies. Using the new Federal Response Plan and earthquake preparedness as the vehicle, this paper provides a detailed analysis of current DoD policy and regulatory guidelines, the organization within DoD for domestic disaster response, and describes current planning efforts at both the Forces Command and Continental U.S. Army CONUSA levels. The paper concludes by identifying some challenges facing the Army in the future and proposes some recommendations for meeting those challenges.
- Sociology and Law
- Safety Engineering
- Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics