ICS – Integrated Planning Process

In every incident, local authority will undertake at initial response based on existing procedures. Afterward, the Incident Command System (ICS) can be implemented when the local authority or responsible officer (RO) has given the authority delegation to the ICS organization led by one or more incident commanders (unified command). If the organization is headed by more than one incident commanders, an IC will be appointed under the agreement of the competent authority as a spokesperson.

After the establishment of an ICS organization, an IC will improve the organization with personnel support in the handling of incidents. The IC will carry out the handling of incidents based on the priorities set by the competent authorities. Activation of units in ICS organizations is highly dependent on incidents, such as the extent, impact, and complexity of incidents. Enabling units such as command and general staff (Safety Officer, Public Information Officer, Liaison Officer, Planning Section, Operation Section, Logistic Section and Finance / Administration Section). When the organization was formed, the IC immediately drafted a plan for the handling of the incident.

Planning is a very important process chain in ICS. Planning embodies a measurable, integrated, and coordinated incident response operation so that incidents can be handled effectively. Effective means incident handling can be solved by utilizing resources (personnel and equipment) based on measurable function and time.

planning p

In ICS, planning includes several elements that are abbreviated as P – O – S – T. P – O – S – T stands for priority, objective, strategy and tactics. Priorities are the primary choices to be gained in handling incidents, such as with regard to humans, electricity, or road access. Objective (s) is what they want to achieve based on predetermined priorities, such as providing safety and security for affected personnel and citizens, and searching for and rescuing dead, wounded or missing victims. Defining the objective (s) can refer to the parameters of S – M – A – R – T or specific, measurable, action oriented, realistic and timely. A strategy is a plan or direction intended to accomplish a goal. Tactics is the delivery and directing of resources to an incident in order to accomplish the objectives based on the strategy that has been prepared. For example, in a forest fire with 10 x 10 m² of firefighters deployed a total of 1 team of 10 people with light type equipment. In planning there is always a contingency plan where the incident situation is very dynamic.

Meanwhile, the establishment of several elements of P – O – S – T will facilitate the planning of incident handling. In this planning, all units contribute to an integrated planning process where planning can recur when an incident is still in progress. Planning will be rearranged after a predetermined operating period, usually within 12 or 24 hours. ICS has a planning cycle in the period of incident management operations known as planning P.

planning p 2
Foto: Twitter.com

These cycles of planning P are inseparable from planning forms involving units in ICS organizations, such as command and general staff meetings, tactics meetings, planning meetings. A very important part of this cycle is the Incident Action Plan document as the basis for carrying out an on-scene incident response operation. This IAP is informed in the operational briefing phase to all personnel involved in the handling of incidents.

In ICS, the expression that is always emphasized is ‘Planning P is my friend’ and ‘Time is our enemy.’ Planning referring to planning P is a proven planning cycle that is capable of streamlining incident handling operations. Whereas, time is valuable so any meetings, briefings or any activities in ICS consider time.

ICS is a management concept for all types of incidents that are standardized and performed at on-scene. ICS also provides space for various parties to build an integrated resource planning and management process. Background of the widespread forest fire incident in urban areas of California, the United States Forest Service developed this ICS from the 1970s to the present.


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