The Camden County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) is implementing the Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency’s (GEMA/HS) new statewide re-entry system and certification process.
The new re-entry system and process for certification are for essential response personnel seeking access to a restricted area following a disaster in Georgia.
“Quick re-entry of emergency response and essential personnel allows an affected area to begin the process of getting running again by ensuring access to necessary services,” said GEMA/HS Director Homer Bryson.
“Our experience with the evacuations during Hurricanes Matthew and Irma have reconfirmed the importance of an orderly re-entry process,” said Camden County EMA Director Chuck White. “We want to make sure that Camden County is safe, first and foremost, before our residents return home.”
Phase 1 is the initial phase of re-entry. During this phase, teams from state and local response agencies, as well as private sector utility providers, will gain access to impacted areas. The primary objective of operating personnel during this phase is to render the area safe for the first responders who will follow them to conduct life safety operation.
Under the new process for re-entry, permits will be issued by GEMA/HS and only for re-entry phases 2 and 3. Organizations, businesses, and non-profits wishing to seek re-entry access are now required to apply through the state, rather than local emergency management agencies.
Personnel entering a restricted area should be prepared to present a State of Georgia Disaster Re-Entry Permit, employee credentials (marked vehicle, company badge, etc.), and a valid government-issued identification card. Contractors are also required to present an employer authorization letter.
The re-entry phases that require permits under this new process are defined as:
- Phase 2: Emergency Response and Life Safety Workforce Re-Entry; personnel conducting life safety operations in impacted areas.
- Phase 3: Essential Public and Private Sector Personnel Re-Entry; primarily, individuals in the public and private sectors that can restore essential operations, services, and commerce in support of re-entry by the general public. These systems and networks include, but are not limited to: fuel and food distributors, non-emergency medical facilities (such as dialysis centers), pharmaceutical providers, members of the media, medical facility support staff, and local government essential workers.
During Phase 4, local residents, property owners, and business owners from the impacted area will be allowed re-entry. These individuals will need to be prepared to present a valid government-issued photo identification and proof of residency or ownership of a business in the area. No State of Georgia Disaster Re-Entry Permits are issued for Phase 4 re-entry.
In Phase 5, Camden County will be open to public with limited access and local officials will determine that the county or portions of the county are relatively safe for entrance by the general public. Restrictions may remain in place for a period of time limiting access to daylight hours.
Camden County along with the cities of Kingsland, St. Marys, and Woodbine, the Camden County Sheriff’s Office, Camden County Schools, and Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay operate under a unified re-entry plan for Camden County residents. Specific information about the Camden County Unified Hurricane Re-Entry Plan is available online at www.camdencountyga.gov/EMA. During an evacuation, re-entry phases will be communicated through CodeRED. All Camden County residents should ensure they maintain up-to-date CodeRED registration at all times.
For more information or questions regarding the new re-entry process, please visit the Re-Entry Standard Operating Guide or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.