I have watched the media response to the West explosion, and there are some points that need to be brought out concerning the efforts by some to blame the McLennan County Office of Emergency Management, headed by Frank Patterson, for the incident in West.
First, Frank Patterson is a well-respected emergency management leader in Central Texas. He is respected because of his knowledge, his dedication and his leadership. When I took office, we had just had a tornado go through our county. Frank was here to help, which I have since learned is typical Frank. He has helped us many times since.
The idea of blaming Frank and other emergency management personnel for what happened in West is nothing short of pathetic. And this pathetic idea is being pushed by people who know so little about emergency management that they believe that a Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), which is an advisory committee used by some counties, is the totality of emergency preparedness.