The simple dictionary definition of an emergency is “a sudden unforeseen crisis that requires immediate action.” In the Office of Emergency Management, an emergency is considered any event which requires immediate action to save lives, to protect property and the environment, and to meet basic human needs.

OEM’s Role in Response

In the majority of events, the first responders on scene initially are fully capable of taking action to resolve the emergency. There are times, however, when and event will grow to the point where further assistance is needed from a coordinating entity, such as the Pima County Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security. It is at these times that Pima County’s Emergency Operations Center is brought online and Emergency Management staff is called in to perform a number of duties swiftly and effectively.

These duties include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Activation and distribution of County response plans, to ensure that all agencies involved in response efforts are working together from the same starting point.
  • Coordination of resource requests, to ensure that priority tasks are completed and that a given resource is not stretched too thin.
  • Intake and analysis of incident information, and distribution of the resulting intelligence, to ensure that all agencies involved have the details they need to complete their missions.
  • Coordinate damage assessments during an event, to ensure that the recovery process can proceed smoothly.
  • Advising and informing of local officials about Emergency Management activities during an event, to ensure that they can make sound decisions.

Significant incidents require a coordinated response across agencies and jurisdictions, political boundaries, sectors of society, organizations, etc. This is the role of the Pima County Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

Response Partners

Pima County works closely with all of the jurisdictions within its borders to ensure that plans are consistent and organized.

Response Resources

Below you will find information on some of the programs that the Pima County Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security supports during response efforts. Some or all of these programs may be brought forward as response resources, depending on the nature of the emergency.

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