The Albany Storm Damage Authority is responsible for addressing the damage done by the Albany region’s major thunderstorm events. This authority has a wide range of resources available to respond to these events, including an Emergency Management Division (EMD) to handle critical needs and incident assessments. These efforts are made in response to the need for a rapid and effective means of managing the damage caused by these events.
In the past, the EMD has handled emergency calls regarding storms in the Albany area. However, this is only when there were more than four inches of snow on the ground or winds that exceeded eighty-five miles per hour. For the most part, they dealt with smaller scale storms and local power outages. But now the EMD has developed a new tool to manage such events that include the development of a Storm Damage Analysis (SDA) tool that makes it easier for them to evaluate the damage and determine the most appropriate course of action.
A Storm Damage Analysis consists of two main components; a Structural Design and Mitigation Strategy (SDSMS). The SDSMS will help to determine the overall severity of the damage to critical buildings. The Storm Damage Assessment (SDAA) is a secondary component that provides a comprehensive assessment of the damage. The SDAA includes an assessment of the property, its utilities and their condition prior to the storm. It also takes into consideration the potential future effects of the storm. The SDAA also evaluates the impact of any debris on the buildings that were damaged as well as how likely it is that the building will have to be destroyed by another storm in the future.
The Structural Design and Mitigation Strategy, or SDSMS, is the second component of the Storm Damage Assessment. This part of the plan takes into consideration the total cost of repairs to the properties damaged and determines the best method for repairing the property. The Structural Design and Mitigation Strategy will also include an environmental report that identifies the factors that contributed to the severity of the event and outlines a mitigation strategy to minimize those same factors in future storms. A mitigation strategy will be implemented after the SDSMS has been completed and a schedule for recovery has been established.
The third and final part of the Storm Damage Assessment involves identifying a restoration schedule that follows the recommendations of the SDSSA. Once the restoration plan is determined, the SDSMA will be revised to reflect the changes made and new or changed conditions identified during the recovery process. Once the new schedule has been established, the SDSMA will be revised again.
In summary, the Storm Damage Assessment makes it easy for the EMD to prioritize and manage a storm event that damages critical structures, and to establish a plan for restoration. Once the damage is identified, the EMD and the local authorities will implement a comprehensive restoration plan that includes mitigation techniques and procedures that reduce future damage.