On Tuesday, August 22, 13 people represented Hennessey and Kingfisher County including the Hennessey Police and Fire departments, County Emergency Management, Town of Hennessey, Kingfisher County Highway Department, The Ministerial Alliance, and All About Hennessey. This group gathered at the Town Hall to go over what worked and what didn’t during the recent storm that caused significant damage in Hennessey on August 13th at about 11 pm. 

Hennessey Fire Chief Brandon Scott called the meeting and started by laying out the timeline that started moments after the storm had cleared and it was safe to be out. Scott established the “Incident Command Center” (IC) at the Hennessey Police Station because it has a generator and radios to communicate. At this time almost all of Hennessey was without power and there was still a lot of lighting in the area. 

During the first few hours, IC was communicating with all of the first responders that patrolling looking for damage to homes, powerlines down, and streets that were blocked. These crews included Hennessey Fire, Police, Street Department, KF Highway Department, and KFC Emergency Management.  This information was disseminated to the community by All About Hennessey who was also part of the first responder team.

By sunup, it started to be clear that a shelter was going to be necessary so the decision was made to move the IC to the town storm shelter located south of the library at the old Main St gym. The challenge with this location was there was no power and the A/C was broken. It was recommended that a generator be purchased for the Town Hall, and install the old generator from the fire station at the storm shelter and get the HVAC system working. 

By noon the trustees declared a state of emergency that opened doors to State and Federal help if needed.  Some of the topics of discussion included the lack of a generator at the nursing home, and making more aware that the Red Cross and a shelter were available.

Steve Loftis, Kingfisher County Emergency Manager, Ryan Deatherage, Director of KFC 911, and Jim Shelton, Blane County Emergency Manager spoke to the group about assigning a local emergency manager and what training was available. 

Those present included: Steve Loftis, Kingfisher County Emergency Manager, Ryan Deatherage, Director of KFC 911, Jim Shelton, Blane County Emergency Manager, Brandon Scott, HFD Chief, James Matousek, Assistant Fire Chief, Arron Pitts, HPD Chief, Starla Fuksa, Town Administrator, Mayor Clif Vogt, Clay Vinson, KC Hwy Dept., Jimmy Berkenbile, CAT and Ministerial Alliance, and Jack Quirk and Libby Seiger All About Hennessey.