About emergency management

What is an Emergency or Disaster

An emergency or disaster can include

  • Severe Weather
    • Tornadoes
    • Straight line winds
    • Ice storms
  • Hazardous Materials
    • Chemical spills
    • Chemical fires
    • Chemical releases
  • Earthquakes
  • Man-made Incidents
    • Terrorism
    • Violent extremists
    • Cyber threats
  • Solar Incidents such as solar flares
Image or radar with a tornado warning polygon impacting Hamilton County
Earthquake Zones showing the New Madrid and Wabash Valley Fault Zones

What is Emergency Management

Emergency management is the organization and management of resources and responsibilities for dealing with all humanitarian aspects of emergencies. The aim is to reduce the harmful effects of all hazards, including disasters. Source: Wikipedia                                                                                

Before During After

History of Emergency Management

Congress enacted the Civil Defense Act of 1950, which created Civil Defense. In 1979, the Civil Defense Act was amended, and Congress created the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). States enacted laws that provided for disaster planning and response. Title 10 of the Indiana Code mandates every county within the state will be protected by a local Emergency Management Agency or EMA.

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3

Why do we have Emergency Management?

  • Required by federal, state, and local laws
  • Must respond to incidents
    • Fire, flood, earthquake, oil spill, air and water contamination, explosion, technological emergency, utility failure, hazmat/chemical incident, health emergency, an act of terrorism, public calamity, riot, hostile military action
  • Must provide
    • Coordination and support
    • Information management
    • Consequence management
  • What does Emergency Management Do?

  • Maintains critical plans and procedures for emergency response
  • Responds to emergencies, hazardous materials incidents, and requests for assistance from municipalities, other counties, or the state
  • Builds and maintains relationships with local and state agencies, private sector partners, and non-governmental organizations such as the Community Organizations Active in Disasters
  • Promote individual, family, and community preparedness
  • Ensure a constant state of readiness for emergency response
    • Emergency Management Works who are first responders and part of the public safety team
    • Emergency equipment and supplies
    • Emergency Operations Center
  • Maintain daily communication with stakeholders


What does emergency management do during an emergency or disaster?

  • Implement emergency plans and procedures by:
    • Responding to the scene
    • Activation of the Emergency Operations Center
    • Activation of key stakeholders and volunteers
  • Provide information management
  • Resource support and coordination
  • Consequence management

Organizational Structure

Hamilton County Emergency Management consists of eight full-time staff.  All personnel have day-to-day roles, command and general staff assignments in the Emergency Operations Center, are assigned a school district for safe school activities, and act as a liaison to agencies who work in the EOC.

Organization Roles and Responsibilities


The annual budget for Emergency Management is just over one million, of which $90,000 is reimbursed to the county from FEMA to pay for half of the salaries of three full-time staff.