During times of chaos, getting and processing information is critical to decision making. The military trains to make better decisions faster than the enemy. In a mass shooting, earthquake, tornado or hurricane, the enemy is the event. This decision making process is called an OODA loop. Observation, Orientation, Decision, Action – repeat. The OODA loop process is repeated thousands of times daily at the lowest level. The challenge becomes making major decisions at the top level or EOC when there is a lack of information.
By the nature of our government structure, information silos are created. Extensive time and money are spent to combat the very system built by the agencies needing the information. This is normal and no ones fault. Our emergency management personnel do a great job as seen with Hurricane Maria and Irma but any organization is going to struggle to get information for their decision making process. The delay in information has very significant consequences – life and death in fact and financially.
Aftermath data also aids organizations throughout the emergency management continuum.