The office is charged with preparing Worcester County and the public to manage activities before, during and after the impact of natural and technological disaster agents to protect lives and property within the County.
The office operates under the concept of Comprehensive Emergency Management, which applies to ALL types of hazards and requires a partnership among all levels of government, the private sector, industry, voluntary organizations, and the public The four basic principles of Emergency Management are,
- Mitigation: Activities undertaken to eliminate or reduce the chance of an occurrence or the effects of a disaster.
- Preparedness: Activities include developing plans to enhance response capabilities and conducting exercises to assess response efficiencies.
- Response: Activities that are designed to provide the public with emergency assistance.
- Recovery: Activities to return the community to normal or near normal through relief operations.
With over 30 miles of shoreline bordering the Atlantic Ocean, hurricane preparedness is a key component of Worcester's Emergency Management program. Each year, the office takes part in hurricane exercises sponsored by Maryland Emergency Management Agency and also by the Delmarva Emergency Task Force. The Task Force has successfully brought together emergency managers in all nine Maryland Eastern Shore Counties, as well as Delaware and the Eastern Shore of Virginia. In addition, key county agency partners in emergency management and planning attend the National Hurricane Conference in the spring of each year. This brings those staff members up to date on the latest developments in building codes, evacuation procedures, local governmentâ€™s role in recovery and more.
Worcester County is a member of several organizations related to Emergency Management. Among these are the Maryland Emergency Management Association, Delmarva Emergency Task Force, the Eastern Shore Alliance of Public Safety Answering Points, and is proud to be a partner with MEMA, the Maryland Emergency Management Agency.
All residents and visitors are urged to visit the link to the emergency checklist below for useful information.
Emergency Response Vehicles
The Department of Emergency Services has 3 Emergency Communications vehicles. Each is equipped with multiple radio's operating on 800 MHz, VHF and UHF frequencies. The units are also outfitted with a Salamander Industries incident command board and accountability tag system boards. The two 2005 Ford Expeditions are also equipped with Commander Systems incident command cabinets and 308 CommunicationsTac Pac® communications units. These Tac Pac's include a laptop computer with wireless capability, document scanner, printer and cell phone.
This 22-foot box trailer is stocked with cots and blankets and ready for immediate deployment. Trailer is pulled to the shelters that may be designated for opening, materials dropped and then the trailer moved on to the next shelter.
This 12-foot box trailer is equipped with medical supplies for treating up to 30 people at a mass casualty scene. In addition to basic bandages the unit is equipped with cervical collars, backboards and splints for immobilization of patients. This unit is regularly deployed around the county near events drawing large crowds of people over multiple days. In the event of an incident where the number of patients would rapidly deplete the supplies carried on a normal ambulance supplies could be pulled from this unit.
This 20-foot unit has been built to supplement on scene operations at a major event or incident. The trailer is equipped with multiple 800 MHz radios on the Worcester County radio system, medical first aid equipment and emergency preparedness brochures. The unit could be deployed to events such as the Worcester County Fair, Furnace Town festival or the Pocomoke Cypress Festival.