By Bernie Kelley
The California State Militia has Four Standing Orders that direct an individual, a family, or a militia unit for making decisions in disasters. These can be as small as a drowning incident, medium like a school shooting, or as large as a forest fire. In this article, we’ll discuss the Second Standing Order: Establish support services.
The First Standing Order: O.O.D.A.
The First Standing Order is to Secure the situation. In World War l, the fluid situation of aerial combat necessitated that pilots have more freedom to make decisions during the heat of battle, they needed to operate more independently than ground forces; therefore, the O.O.D.A . Loop was developed. Observe, Orient, Decide, Act and repeat as necessary.
O.O.D.A. was so successful that it can be considered the grandfather system for nearly all special forces decision making. Villagers are not soldiers - they are civilians who desire to return to safe living. (The same desire any disaster victim will have.)
The Second Standing Order: Establish Support
The Second Standing Order is to Establish Support Services. Security provides a safe place to work in. However, establishing support consists of medical support, communications support, and support for everyday living needs - in that order.
To illustrate, let us consider a car accident. Observe the entire situation. As people arrive, communicate and assign responsibilities for security, medical and communications. This allows many things to happen simultaneously. Then direct until someone with more knowledge arrives.
Since adding victims is poor disaster math - security first, then the medical treatment for shock and bleeding can begin. Terrain will dictate the decision to move victims to a safer place, or treat in the vehicle. Communications may be line-of-sight hand signals or relaying shouted commands. Someone must remain in contact with the emergency services.
To consider everyday living needs we must consider an earthquake scenario. After you have crawled from the rubble yourself, you must quickly observe and orient. Where is the safest place to operate from? Do you stay here or move?
Everyday life is water, food and shelter- in that order. You must establish fresh water availability. Where will garbage and human waste gather? Where is food in mass quantity? How will you move it to where you need it? How will you share it? Where will people sleep? Child care - who and where?
Assign capable people to communicate with you and head up work groups to accomplish these tasks. You must remain central and easily found so you can solve problems.
Obviously, now, is the time to plan. We must remember that we are not dealing with soldiers, we are dealing with civilians who just want to establish their normal lives again.
Survivalists are too often marauders. The difference between a marauder and a citizen is support services. Marauders predate on others. Citizen’s work in community. The work of the community is to provide water, food, medical and safety. The Second Standing Order is the fastest way to get back to normal living.