|County Fire Marshall|
Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC)
Every year chemical accidents happen by the hundreds around the country. Few are catastrophic, but even a small one can disrupt a community and damage business. We can’t get away from using chemicals - they bring too many benefits to the way we live. But we can learn to manage those chemicals in a safe and responsible way.
How do communities deal with the risk of chemical accidents? In this country, we have a network of over 3,000 Local Emergency Planning Committees ( LEPC’s ), whose first responsibility is to create an emergency response plan for such incidents. These LEPC’s were set up following Federal Law, according to requirements of the Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act of 1986 ( EPCRA ), and they operate under the State Emergency Response Commission (SERC).
Because of our rural setting it was agreed by this committee that it would be more suited to our area to deal with multi- hazards rather than just hazardous chemicals specific. The Committee is made up of members from City, County, Law enforcement, and Fire agencies as well as private industry.
The plan takes on the form of comprehensive emergency management ie. Mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery. Mitigation encompasses activities designed to minimize the potential negative effects of an incident. Included are actions taken by the community to eliminate or reduce the probability of an emergency. Preparedness includes activities designed to ensure the most effective and efficient response, thus minimizing associated damages. Response includes all activities designed to safely and effectively stabilize the incident, including emergency assistance to disaster victims. Recovery activities follow the response phase and are designed to return all systems to their pre-incident condition.
If you would like to serve on this committee, please call your local Emergency Manager.