Delaware, Trinidad and Tobago train for disasters

Delaware and its state partner, Trinidad and Tobago, recently spent three days sharing ideas, best practices and challenges related to disaster and emergency response.

During the three-day visit, participants from the Delaware National Guard met with members of Trinidad and Tobago's defense force to discuss their roles in disaster response for each state. The representatives gained new ideas, knowledge and best practices they can take back and apply to their own disaster response plan and process.

Delaware and Trinidad and Tobago have different systems set up to respond to disasters. The Delaware National Guard has a federal mission and a state mission and must be invited to participate in the missions. Once invited to the missions by either the president of the U.S. or the state governor, the Guard pre-packages equipment and personnel prior to or following an event.

Trinidad and Tobago's first responders include members of the Coast Guard, the Air Guard and the country's regiment and reserves. The responding agencies collect data from other agencies before disseminating the data to further coordinate the response effort. The coordinated effort is a work in process.

Delaware and Trinidad and Tobago also share similar attributes, including population density and hurricanes.

Later in 2014, the Delaware National Guard will host its Trinidad partners, which will include a tour of the Office of Military Support and Joint Operations. The attendees will also talk with the state agencies the Guard works with during disaster response missions.