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The issue of continuity during disasterous events is keeping authorities everywhere constantly busy, as it is unthinkable that a municipal body would stop from functioning just when it’s full function is needed the most. In the unique local aspect in Israel, emergency abilities are of great importance when every few winters we are facing snow storms that paralyze large parts of Israel, as with Jerusalem two years ago. It’s obvious that the issue is on the agenda for local authorities around the world.
The city of Newton, Iowa in the United States has been working on building a work program for the last 18 months to help the city maintain function in any sort of emergency event, whether a natural disaster, technological failure or hand-made disaster. The program outlines the way authorities in Newton will be able to keep providing all necessary services in alternative ways, if all regular ways are collapsed. These services include law enforcement, road maintenance, paying employees and goverment bills. The city hopes that leaning on these alternative means could allow to return to normal, some way or other, in a minimal time of up to 12 hours from the moment an emergency occures without warning.
The emergency continuity plan sets as goals providing maximum security for citizens and keeping to a minimum any damage of property, we well as being able to quickly return to function the service that was given to citizens by private businesses, in addition to community sevices. The last goal is to provide full documentation of the event so it can be educational for future events.