Emergency Response to Hurricane Dorian: Emergent Volunteer Groups and Public-Private Partnerships

Adelle Thomas, Cathleen LeGrand, Susan H. Larson


The emergency response efforts in the immediate days and weeks following Hurricane Dorian provide valuable guidance for effective preparation for and response to future extreme events. We assess the experiences and lessons learnt from an emergent volunteer group that provided emergency response in the first fifteen days following the landfall of Hurricane Dorian. Drawing from accounts of first responders that convened at the Odyssey Aviation airport in New Providence, the paper highlights the activities, outcomes, and enabling factors of the ad hoc group that supported a wide range of emergency response efforts. The group developed and managed an evacuation centre that processed over 6,000 evacuees from Abaco and Grand Bahama; collaborated to deliver food, shelter and medical attention for evacuees; and found housing for displaced persons. They organized the marine response to the storm; coordinated international organizations; and facilitated landing first responders and initial medical teams into Abaco. They also provided coordination support for the Government of The Bahamas. We highlight the need to include public-private partnerships in national disaster management systems to significantly strengthen national capacities to address the rising risks of disasters.


Hurricane Dorian; Disaster relief

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15362/ijbs.v27i1.417

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