Arizona Wildfire TERF

March 9, 2022 | 8:00am – 3:00pm

Desert Willow Conference Center
4340 E Cotton Center Blvd, Phoenix, AZ 85040

Breakfast will be served from 7:00AM to 8:00AM | Lunch and snacks will also be provided.

The purpose of the Targeted Event Readiness Forum (TERF) is to provide an environment for exploring opportunities along the disaster response continuum. The TERF is not a disaster preparedness exercise, but instead a facilitated discussion to foster the sharing of information. However, you will want to reference your disaster plan in advance to be prepared to offer information when asked.

Objectives:

Determine how planning will be implemented for:

  1. Relationship establishment among local, state, tribal, territorial, federal, and private sector entities (including integration of representatives from the Access and Functional Needs Population service arena into planning, identification of community evacuation roles and responsibilities, identification of small and big animal shelters, and identification of municipal/local Family Reunification Centers and shelters [feeding, security, and practices during COVID-19]).
  2. Training (including activation of Emergency Response Interpreter Credentialing program personnel and familiarization with available resources).
  3. Supply and equipment assessment, procurement, and contracts (including air and ground assets and water and effluent rights access).

Determine how public information and warning will be implemented (including citizen notification of mass care services and Ready/Set/Go planning).

Determine how mitigation activities will be implemented (including Firewise outreach and reduction of fuels, such as non-native species of grass and weeds).

Determine how response will be activated and provided (including Declaration of Need, operational coordination, communications [including Wireless Emergency Alert System], unified command, rescue and evacuation (including recreational areas), and critical infrastructure systems).

Determine how recovery will be provided (infrastructure, debris management, relocation, repopulation, home repair [including Individual Assistance Reimbursement Limitation Education], Fire Management Assistance Grants (FMAG) and declaration outside of FMAG, and After Action Report attention.

Scenario to Spur Dialogue

Noon – It is late June on a Friday, and Approximately 200 hikers are ascending or descending in the McDowell Mountains. Drought is persistent in the state, and the red brome grass is knee length and fully cured out. The evening before (Thursday night), a series of dry lightning bursts landed across the Valley, including the northeast part of Maricopa County. The heat has reached 115 degrees, wind gusts are at 20 miles per hour from the southwest, and the smoldering embers have sparked in parts of the McDowell Mountains. It is expected additional new starts are also “waking up” in the Northeast region of the county.

1:00PM – One of the fires has grown and is endangering multiple Scottsdale and Fountain Hills developments, including child cares and nursing homes. Furthermore, the fire is threatening Rio Verde, Carefree, Cave Creek, Tonto Hills, camp sites, major utility carriers, and other critical infrastructure.

24 Hours Later – Fire is expected to double in size with persistent hot dry windy conditions. Firefighting aircraft are mostly unavailable and committed in other geographic regions due to National Preparedness Level 5 (highest status).

48 Hours Later – More lightning is expected.

72 Hours and Beyond – Flooding and other consequences of the wildfire experienced.