Fermilab’s new emergency planner

Jeffrey Irvin

Jeffrey Irvin, acting head of the Business Services Section, wrote this column.

Question: What do you call the process by which an organization such as Fermilab:

  • Mitigates, prepares, responds and recovers from an emergency or disaster?
  • Effectively and efficiently manages resources, personnel and equipment for dealing with all aspects of an emergency?
  • Works collaboratively with internal and external organizations to ensure that daily operations continue during and after a disaster?
  • Creates and updates plans, policies and protocols to address various emergencies and disasters such as tornadoes, fire, earthquakes and mass casualties?

Answer: Emergency management.

To help Fermilab prepare for emergency events, it is my pleasure to introduce to you David Esterquest, Fermilab’s recently hired emergency planner in the Business Services Section. (The emergency planner position was previously in the ESH&Q Section but was moved to the Business Services Section to better align with the BSS Fire Department and security functions.) Dave comes to us from the healthcare sector, in which he functioned as an emergency coordinator, and has been involved in emergency management initiatives at the federal, state and city levels.

Emergency management involves the overall development, training and education of established plans and procedures to prepare for and respond to an emergency or disaster. Every day, Illinois residents and businesses face natural, technological, chemical and man-made hazards that can potentially become disasters. Utilities such as gas, water, electricity and fuel may be interrupted for hours or even days; your home, workplace or school may be damaged or destroyed; roads and highways may be closed; and stores may be closed because of damage or may have shortages of the items you need.

Fermilab has an established emergency management program to prepare in advance for disasters. Emergency management applies to all Fermilab employees, contractors and visitors. Everyone on the Fermilab site should become familiar with their respective D/S/C policies, plans and protocols for responding to an emergency warning or disaster plan activation. Valuable emergency management information is located on the emergency information Web page.

Please feel free to contact Dave for any questions related to emergency plans, policies and drills. Dave is located on Wilson Hall’s 4th floor and can be reached at x4604.