City, Seeking Volunteers To Participate In City-Assisted Evacuation Exercise

NEW ORLEANS — In preparation for hurricane season, the New Orleans Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (NOHSEP) and are seeking volunteers to role play as evacuees in an exercise of the City-Assisted Evacuation system on Wednesday, May 17, at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, 900 Convention Center Dr., Hall H, from 8:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m.

         Hundreds of volunteers are needed to effectively test the plan, which is designed to help up to 40,000 people in Orleans Parish leave the city during a mandatory evacuation. Anyone interested in participating is encouraged register here.

         Lunch and parking will be provided at the Convention Center.

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         In 2015, the city received a $500,000 grant from the U.S. DOT Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to support a full-scale simulation exercise of the City-Assisted Evacuation plan, with special emphasis on vulnerable/special needs populations. Volunteers will help representatives from various city, state and federal agencies practice the steps required to safely evacuate residents before a hurricane.

         City-Assisted Evacuation provides transportation from 17 Evacuspots to the Union Passenger Terminal, 1001 Loyola Ave., where individuals then board a bus to a state or federal shelter out of harms way. As part of the plan, the city and its partners will residents back to New Orleans once officials determine it is safe to return.

         Thursday, June 1, is the official start of the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season. In the case of a dangerous or severe storm, generally Category 3 hurricane or higher, the city will call a mandatory evacuation. During a mandatory evacuation, all residents must leave the city of New Orleans until officials have designated the city safe for re-entry.

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