Essex Civil Protection & Emergency Management (Essex County Fire & Rescue Service in Partnership with Essex County Council) acts on behalf of the county council, which is a Category 1 Responder under the Civil Contingencies Act 2004 and is responsible for the preparation of contingency plans which detail how we will respond to a disaster or major incident in Essex.
An overview of our role is available from the Cabinet Office. Our work will form part of a coordinated, multi-agency response in support of district partners or other partner agencies. We are committed to working with communities to ensure they are informed and prepared for civil emergencies, and are able to recover following an emergency.
Essex Civil Protection & Emergency Management prepares contingency plans for general incidents and specific risks, such as Radiation (Emergency Preparedness and Public Information) Regulations 2001, off site plans and flood plans.
The Crisis Support Team for Essex provides a multi-agency support service to people affected by major incidents within Essex, or Essex residents affected by a major incident in another area of the UK or abroad.
The Essex Resilience Forum enables agencies involved in preparing for and responding to emergencies in the county to work together to develop effective responses to a range of situations. The forum provides links to many partner agencies such as other Category 1 Responders (Police, Fire, Ambulance, Health, Environment Agency, Coastguard, Local Authorities, etc.) which give advice on flooding, business plans in the event of a disaster and safety advice for all.
Essex County Council also co-operates in policy and planning and undertakes joint training exercises. This ensures that the response to an emergency is as robust and practised as possible.
The Community Risk Register is a list of the risks that could affect areas within Essex and is the first step in the emergency planning process. It ensures that planning work is carried out in proportion to the risk and involves several themes:
- Severe weather (including flooding)
- Human health
- Animal health
- Industry and nuclear.
It is a statutory duty under the Civil Contingencies Act 2004 for local authorities to carry out and maintain risk assessments. These risks are regularly reviewed and updated to provide a comprehensive assessment of the risks facing the county.
Raising public awareness to be more resilient in an emergency is important for communities as a whole. Research has shown that by engaging young people we can reach their parents, guardians, peers and the wider community.
Essex County Council in partnership has produced What If...? games, puzzles, books
and calendar for school aged children to teach them about being a good citizen. Essex is recognised nationally as the forerunner in this kind of work.