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Oklaoosa County Emergency Operations

Making sure you're ready for hurricane season is important. But local agencies also make sure they are prepared. Okaloosa county holds hurricane drills to stay storm ready.

If a storm were to hit, this is how the EOC would look. A room packed with people working round the clock. You never know what to expect until a hurricane makes landfall -  from flooding to wind damage -  the county has to be prepared for anything.

"At the point of a disaster, the public still expects us to respond," said Randy McDaniel.

Officials from all over the county met at the emergency operations center in Niceville. People from the health department, the Red Cross and even representatives from Okaloosa County schools were at the drill.
The goal was to practice different "worst-case scenarios"

Using a make-believe hurricane named "Hurricane Lay" officials practiced what they would do if all communication was lost and if all the systems crashed.

"If we get them ready for worst case scenario, challenge them to the maximum," McDaniel said. 

They have to work fast. In a real emergency, time is of the essence. McDaniel says it's important for the public to also prepare.

"We're going to be challenged on yo," McDaniel said.

Some residents we spoke with aren't too concerned for hurricane season because it's something they're used to.

"Just make sure my surf boards are waxed and ready to go," said Brandon Hromadka.

But others like to prepare ahead of time to avoid the chaos that comes when a storm is on the way

"Everyone is trying to prepare,  when it does happen," said Douglas Pohl.

Oklaoosa County Emergency Operations

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