APPENDIX F. GLOSSARY

ABSORBENT PAPER.

A disaster recovery supply such as blotting paper or unprinted newsprint used to speed the drying process for water-damaged records. If acidic papers such as newsprint are used, they must be removed immediately upon drying.

BLOCKING.

The irreparable sticking of glossy/coated paper upon uncontrolled drying.

CONTINGENCY PLANNING.

Instituting policies and procedures to mitigate the effects of potential emergencies or disasters on an agency's operations and records. Contingency planning is part of the continuity of operations planning required under Federal Preparedness Circulars and other guidance issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Executive Order 12656.

CYCLE.

The periodic removal of obsolete copies of vital records and their replacement with copies of current vital records. This may occur daily, weekly, quarterly, annually or at other designated intervals.

DEGAUSSING.

The process of removing the magnetism from a magnetically recorded tape or disk, thus erasing its contents.

DESICCANT DRYING.

Technique for in situ drying of a building and it's contents by repeated cycles of pumping out moist air and introducing dry air. In limited damp, not wet, situations this technique may be quite effective.

DISASTER.

An unexpected occurrence inflicting widespread destruction and distress and having long-term adverse effects on agency operations. Each Federal agency defines what a long-term adverse effect is in relation to its most critical program activities.

DISASTER BOX.

An initial supply of disaster recovery materials.

DISASTER PLAN.

Written policies and procedures intended to prevent or minimize damage to archival materials or organizational records resulting from disasters.

DISASTER RECOVERY TEAM.

A working team of individuals who are trained to 1) respond appropriately during disaster to ensure human safety and the well-being of collections, 2) conduct a successful recovery operation, and 3) re-establish service.

DISPOSITION.

(1) The actions taken regarding records no longer needed for current Government business. These actions include transfer to agency storage facilities or Federal records centers, transfer from one Federal agency to another, transfer of permanent records to the National Archives, and disposal of temporary records. Disposition is the third stage of the records life cycle.

ELECTRONIC INFORMATION SYSTEM.

A system that contains and provides access to computerized Federal records and other information.

ELECTRONIC RECORDKEEPING SYSTEM.

An electronic system in which records are collected, organized, and categorized to facilitate their preservation, retrieval, use, and disposition.

EMERGENCY.

A situation or an occurrence of a serious nature, developing suddenly and unexpectedly, and demanding immediate action. This is generally of short duration, for example, an interruption of normal agency operations for a week or less. It may involve electrical failure or minor flooding caused by broken pipes.

EMERGENCY COORDINATOR.

A senior policy official appointed by the head of each Federal agency and responsible for developing and maintaining a multi-year, national security emergency preparedness plan for the department or agency to include objectives, programs, and budgetary requirements. Executive Order 12656 defines the duties of this official.

EMERGENCY OPERATING RECORDS.

That type of vital records essential to the continued functioning or reconstitution of an organization during and after an emergency. Included are emergency plans and directive(s), orders of succession, delegations of authority, staffing assignments, selected program records needed to continue the most critical agency operations, as well as related policy or procedural records that assist agency staff in conducting operations under emergency conditions and for resuming normal operations after an emergency.

FILE PLAN.

(1) See FILING SYSTEM. (2) A plan designating the physical location(s) at which an agency's files are to be maintained, the specific types of files to be maintained there, and the organizational element(s) having custodial responsibility. (3) A document containing the identifying number, title or description, and disposition authority of files held in an office. In the context of vital records and records disaster mitigation and recovery programs, definitions (2) and (3) are most applicable.

FILING SYSTEM.

A set of policies and procedures for organizing and identifying files or documents to speed their retrieval, use and disposition. Sometimes called recordkeeping system.

FREEZING.

A stabilization technique for water damaged materials. Provides time for establishing work areas and allows postponement of treatment. Wet paper will increase in size as much as 8% upon freezing; some physical distortion should, therefore, be expected.

FUMIGATION.

The process of exposing documents, usually in a vacuum or other airtight chamber, to gas or vapor to destroy insects or mold. Fumigation is also referred to as disinfection or disinfestation.

HAZARD.

A term meaning a danger, a peril or a risk.

INTERLEAVING.

The placement of absorbent material between leaves to hasten drying. Interleaving sheets should be clean and dry, unprinted, and, ideally, acid-free. In books the total number of interleaving sheets should constitute no more than one-third the thickness of the volume in order to limit physical distortion. When air drying is the only option, despite the risk of severe distortion, coated (glossy) papers should be interleaved between each sheet to prevent blocking (sticking).

LEGAL AND FINANCIAL RIGHTS RECORDS.

That type of vital records essential to protect the legal and financial rights of the Government and of the individuals directly affected by its activities. Examples include accounts receivable records, social security records, payroll records, retirement records, and insurance records. These records were formerly defined as "rights-and-interests" records.

LIFE CYCLE OF RECORDS.

The management concept that records pass through three stages: creation, maintenance and use, and disposition.

MYLAR FILM.

Trade name of the Du Pont Co. for a high-strength polyester film that is chemically and dimensionally stable. Used in disaster recovery operations to support and separate wet papers.

NATIONAL SECURITY EMERGENCY.

Any occurrence, including natural disaster, military attack, technological emergency, or other emergency, that seriously degrades or threatens the national security of the United States, as defined in Executive Order 1 2656.

OFF-SITE STORAGE.

A facility other than an agency's normal place of business where vital records are stored for protection. This is to ensure that the vital records are not subject to damage or destruction from an emergency or disaster affecting an agency's normal place of business.

RECORD PRIORITIES.

Disaster recovery priorities based on 1) value of the information and/or intrinsic value of the record itself, 2) vulnerability of the media and substrates, and 3) frequency of use.

RECORD VALUES

The determination of usefulness of records for operating, administrative, legal, fiscal, and historical purposes.

SERIES.

File units or documents arranged according to a filing system or kept together because they relate to a particular subject or function, result from the same activity, document a specific kind of transaction, take a particular physical form, or have some other relationship arising out of their creation, receipt, or use, such as restrictions on access or use. Also called a record series or a file series. Generally handled as a unit for disposition purposes.

SPECIAL RECORDS.

Those types of records maintained separately from textual/paper records because their physical form or characteristics require unusual care and/or because they have nonstandard sizes. Include electronic, audiovisual, microform, cartographic and remote-sensing imagery, architectural and engineering, printed or card records.

VACUUM DRYING (also called vacuum thermal drying)

The treatment of watersoaked materials by placing them in a chamber, creating a vacuum, and introducing warm, dry air. If materials have previously been frozen, most of the water in the ice becomes liquid before changing to the gaseous state, thus making feathering of inks and other water-related problems such as staining and blocking likely.

VACUUM FREEZE DRYING

The treatment of water soaked materials by freezing to prevent further damage, and subsequent drying under high vacuum with controlled applications of heat. The water, in the form of ice, undergoes sublimation directly from a solid to a gas. Vacuum freeze drying is also effective in killing insects and mold.

VITAL RECORDS

Essential agency records that are needed to meet operational responsibilities under national security emergencies or other emergency or disaster conditions (emergency operating records) or to protect the legal and financial rights of the Government and those affected by Government activities (legal and financial rights records).

VITAL RECORDS MANAGEMENT

The application of records management principles and techniques to ensure the preservation of vital records in cases of emergency or after a disaster.

VITAL RECORDS PROGRAM

The policies, plans, and procedures developed and implemented and the resources needed to identify, use, and protect the essential records needed to meet operational responsibilities under national security emergencies or other emergency or disaster conditions or to protect the Government's rights or those of its citizens. This is a program element of an agency's emergency management function.

NOTE: NARA has published a glossary of general records management terms, some of which are included above. See appendix A for information on obtaining A Federal Records Management Glossary (1993).


[Search all CoOL documents]


URL: http://cool.conservation-us.org/bytopic/disasters/misc/vitalrec/app_f.html
Timestamp: Monday, 24-Nov-2008 16:07:09 PST
Retrieved: Thursday, 25-May-2017 08:43:18 GMT