An emergency can have a significant effect on a community, including:
- death or injury of people
- loss or damage to homes, businesses and community buildings
- disruption to road and rail transport networks
- disruption to electricity, telephone, water or gas networks
- isolation or evacuation of residents
- large scale media focus.
Depending on the nature and scale of the emergency there is a possibility that the emergency services may not be able to reach the scene immediately, e.g. large scale flooding. In such circumstances, the initial response may rely entirely on local people.
Is your community prepared for any emergency?
Parish and Town Councils are not an emergency service and have no statutory responsibility to plan for, or respond to, emergencies. They are not trained, equipped, empowered or resourced to carry out the functions of an emergency service.
However, it is good practice for a community to identify local hazards and make plans on how to assist the emergency services and other responding agencies. A community emergency plan should focus on the welfare of people and help to maintain the local infrastructure.
What should a community emergency plan include?
A community emergency plan should aim to:
- provide a co-ordinated response from the local community
- identify key contacts and resources within the locality
- identify places of safety for residents should an evacuation be necessary
- identify vulnerable people or groups that may require additional assistance
- identify local hazards within the community
- assist in keeping residents within the parish informed of the situation.
Guidance and templates
For more information on developing your own community emergency plan please download the guidance and plan template below.