Inbound Interstate Lane Reversal for Evacuation: A Charleston Best Practice
AD | 02.04.2007 | 08:00:07 | Views: 3085 | ID:
During Hurricane Hugo, the inbound interstate lane traffic flow was reversed in order to speed evacuation of the metro area and coastal islands. Though not in effect during Hurricane Floyd, this best practice has been in place since 1989, and requires the coordination and communication between government leaders and the public to make sure there is sufficient time to put the practice into effect.
Utilizing existing resources, the Interstate Evacuation Lane Reversal (IELR) practice requires approval by the state's governor and the implementation by the state highway patrol. Communication with jurisdiction leaders along the interstate route is critical to coordinate timing and initiation, as well as to have the sufficient manpower to coordinate the timing and control of the exit and entrance ramps. This best practice results in a faster rate of evacuation if the order to reverse is issued early enough. Late reversal adds to confusion and may interfere with real-time evacuation. The key to IELR is to practice and drill on coordination and communication, so that all jurisdictions adjacent to the interstate route are aware of the plan and know what to do when the order to reverse is issued. This best practice was submitted by Chief Franklin Finely, Battalion Chief, Charleston Fire Department: firstname.lastname@example.org
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