Alberta municipalities improve disaster preparedness
June 29, 2017
The Government of Alberta continues to work closely with municipalities and regions to help them prepare for local disasters and emergencies. On June 27 and 28, the Alberta Emergency Management Agency (AEMA) delivered a two-day Incident Management Team (IMT) training session, hosted by the Town of High Level. This event brought together municipalities from across northwestern Alberta and emergency management experts from across the province.
This ongoing work supports recommendation number 10 from the recently released KPMG report into the Fort McMurray wildfire, which encourages the province to “build depth and capacity within local authorities to enhance communities to support each other during emergencies.”
The AEMA is committed to providing Alberta municipalities and communities with the tools and training they need to prepare for disasters and emergencies. Mentors at the training session included representatives from Strathcona County, Seba Beach, and Canada Taskforce 2 (CAN-TF2).
As noted on page 71 of the KPMG report, the AEMA is encouraged to “continue its development of Incident Management Team (IMT) and Incident Support Team (IST) and recovery capabilities. This includes continuing to leverage Alberta’s existing Type 2 IMTs (i.e. Strathcona County, CAN-TF2), the development of regional Type 3 IMTs, and building a database of available AEMA personnel and supplies for IST deployment.”
The training session in High Level allows local and provincial emergency management professionals to connect, learn, and help build community resilience through partnership and mutual support of neighbouring communities.
In addition to hosting face-to-face meetings in communities across the province, the Alberta Emergency Management Agency also provides local emergency management professionals with online training options and tools, such as the Community Emergency Management Program which helps Alberta communities create plans that better prepare Albertans for emergencies.
Overall, the number of Albertans completing the Government of Alberta’s online emergency management programs has more than tripled since 2012 to over 7000 individuals trained in 2016.