County’s new EOC gets its first test during winter storm

Abby Cavenaugh

February 17, 2014

Anson County’s new emergency services center opened earlier this month and with it, a new emergency operations center, or EOC, that will be the place where all emergency planning takes place during a natural disaster or other incident. During last week’s snow and ice storm, the EOC was activated and put to use for the very first time.

A meeting was planned for Tuesday afternoon, after the Anson Record’s print deadline, to determine what went right and what went wrong during the EOC’s first test. However, it would appear from preliminary reports that the EOC passed with flying colors.

“The new EOC was wonderful,” County Manager Lawrence Gatewood said. “We had representatives from the state and national guard at the EOC, and we had plenty of room and very nice facilities from which to operate and successfully manage through this emergency. We could not have handled the number of emergency staff at the old EOC. It was simply too small and ill equipped.”

However, there’s always room for improvement. “I am looking for any input as to what went good, bad and how to improve,” said Rodney Diggs, county emergency services director.

On Monday morning, Gatewood said things were starting to return to normal. “I appreciate the county staff that worked overtime to make sure that we were prepared to respond swiftly and effectively during this emergency,” he added.