“Command centre”, “control centre”, “war room” – call it what you will, in the event of a disaster or major incident this will be a very important place. It will be the location from which the recovery operations are directed and managed.
It will be staffed by senior people, probably working long hours and under stressful conditions. So it makes sense to plan its location and facilities in advance.
When setting up your command centre, consider the following :
- Availability – it may need to be available at very short notice, in the middle of the night or at a weekend;
- Location – it should be reasonably near to, but far enough away from, the disaster or incident site, to still be easily accessible;
- Access – key-holders should be available and contactable;
- Facilities – including desks, chairs, telephones, fax, PCs, network connections, meeting rooms, whiteboards, radio, TV and video, stationery and catering supplies. And, if possible, it should have separate meeting, quiet work and rest areas;
- Alternatives – consider nominating more than one location, in case the primary location is unavailable for some reason.
And having decided on suitable locations, do be sure to let all the relevant people know where they are and how to get there!