University of Maine Emergency Operations Center
The Incident Command System (ICS) is a nationally recognized management system designed to coordinate emergency response through the integration of facilities, procedures, personnel and communication within a common structure. In 2008 Homeland Security Presidential Directive (HSPD)-5 declared that ICS be used in all events requiring a multi-agency response. Maine law (37 B-MRSA sec 784B) also requires the use of ICS by emergency responders. At the University of Maine, the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) working group is charged with assuring that HSPD-5 and Maine law are adhered to. Each member of the multiple disciplinary team is a specialist within their own right, has received training unique to the ICS system and has systematically practice their roles using designed exercises.
The EOC working group size depends on the scope, magnitude and complexity of the event. For most events such as power outages and major storms only a small group is required. The COVID-19 response has required the group to evolve and expand to address the response. Basic functional areas include:
- Incident Command – Incident Commander and general staff direct and coordinate the team’s activities
- Operations – organizes and directs resources to carry out indecent action plans
- Planning – develops incident action plans
- Logistics – provides resources and services to support the event
- Finance/Administration – provides fiscal guidance and monitors event related costs