Isaac Preparedness Update, Monday, August 27, 2012

August 27, 2012


We are coming closer to knowing more about where Isaac will land, although if you have experience with tropical storms and hurricanes, you know they can turn on a moment's notice. Because of that possibility, we have not let our guard down and continue to prepare as much as possible. The noon AWF Conference call allowed for each district to check in and report what is being done to prepare and what resources are available. Our conference has received many offers of assistance should we need them. We will assess on Wednesday whether we need this help or another conference would be better served by their help. Trained emergency response teams could be needed as early as Friday whether it is in our conference or another. If you have a team trained that can help, please let Susan Hunt know at

Baypines District:
Tim Trent announced that Blue Lake Camp has been contacted about housing potential power crews. The Baypines District will help with this housing if needed. Cory Smith is also planning on touring the district on Thursday to assess any needs there might be. Two shelters are scheduled to open in Baldwin County: Robertsdale and Daphne. Mandatory evacuations for Baldwin County have been lifted and are now voluntary for those in low lying areas and in mobile homes and campgrounds. Rob Haynes at Fairhope UMC reported the they are an after-event shelter with Red Cross if needed. It could be activated 72 hours after landfall. They are also ready to house invited UMCOR/UMVIM teams if needed. Gulf Shores UMC has an available tool trailer. 

Demopolis District: 
Charles Walters, current tornado recovery coordinator, has a shower trailer and 911 trailer ready and available for use. Should it be needed, he can transform it from a rebuilding trailer to an emergency needs trailer with relief supplies.  

Dothan District:
Tripp Todd reported that Covenant UMC is on standby to serve as a shelter should it be needed. Several trained ERT teams are also ready to be deployed. 

Marianna/Panama City District:
Woody Bollinger informed the group that Walton, Bay and Gulf Counties will have shelters available for the community.

Mobile District: 
Ron Baughman reported that his district is ready with resources and also have ERT teams. Ron is working directly with the Red Cross to coordinate efforts. There will be shelters opening in Mobile County today. Tonya Elmore and Kim Doss have been actively contacting all churches in the district reminding them of the protocol before and after the storm. They have implemented a phone chain for reporting after the storm. 

Montgomery/Opelika District:
Michael Lawler has five ERT trained teams on alert. Supplies are also available and can be delivered. Aldersgate UMC in Montgomery is on stand by to house evacuations if needed. Park Memorial in Troy is also on standby as a shelter. Auburn UMC and Brundidge UMC have tool trailers. 

Montgomery/Prattville District:
Chris Perry will serve as the official coordinator of trained chainsaw teams. Should you have a team he is not aware of, please contact him at

Jeremy Pridgeon has completed the task of contacting all pastors along the Highway 98 corridor. Most are staying close to their home and church. Nancy Watson from this district will help coordinate care teams in the coming days. Santa Rosa Beach issued mandatory evacuations in low lying areas, such as Navarre, as well as for mobile home parks/campgrounds. Shelters in Milton are available. 

Since we are not positive where the store will land, we could potentially be serving the role of transferring supplies. Also, please be reminded that we will not go anywhere until we receive an invitation. I will be proactive in making calls if we feel we can be of assistance in other conferences. I appreciated hearing from Tom Hazelwood of UMCOR this morning. If we have damage in our conference, we will ask for a request for financial assistance.

At this point, we will closely watch the storm and continue to pray for all in its path. Our next conference-wide call will be Wednesday. At that time we will assess all districts and handle needs. Please don't forget to utilize our reporting damage protocol system. If we have damage, it will allow is to be as efficient in helping you as possible. 

Amelia Fletcher
Alabama-West Florida Conference