Community Emergency Plan

Photo of people having a meeting

A community emergency plan (CEP) provides advice and guidance to a local community before and during an emergency. Developing a plan could help keep disruption to a minimum in the community, safeguard the most vulnerable and speed a return to the new normality. It is important to be aware of the risks that could affect your community and understand how you could be affected by them in order to improve resilience. The plan will provide a framework for the systematic listing of contact details, responsibilities and information about resources available if an emergency happens.

Making your Emergency Plan

When it comes to making a plan, consider the following to make your plan more effective if it is ever needed.

  • What are the potential risks for the community?
  • Who has key skills, knowledge, transport or equipment which could help?
  • What building is available that can be used and who has the keys?
  • How will communication links be set up to ensure everyone is contacted?
  • Are there are any known vulnerable people/groups in the area?

Your community will be better prepared to cope during and after an emergency when everyone works together using their local knowledge and individual skills. Understanding what requirements most-at-need groups may have in an emergency can make a real difference.

It is important to be clear from the outset and involve as many members of the community as you can to make any plan effective. The more people know about what it is, how it works and what their roles and responsibilities are within the plan, the more resilient your community will be in the event of an emergency. Ensure that there is a co-ordinator who is the single point of contact for the emergency services and that there is a deputy who can assist in their absence. The co-ordinator should have an extensive knowledge of the local area and be enthusiastic in their role to motivate others in the community.

Maintain your Plan

For your community plan to be effective, it needs to be regularly reviewed and updated to ensure it meets the changing needs of the community and make sure all contact details included in the plan are correct. For further advice, consider talking to other communities who have successfully implemented plans for community resilience.

The council and other emergency responders need to be aware of your plan so that they will know who to contact and what assistance you can provide.

For more information, view the Community Emergency Plan Toolkit.