About Us

What is Emergency Management?

Emergency Management is a system of plans designed to handle, or manage, large-scale emergencies and disasters including natural, technological or man-made disasters. Emergency Management is divided into four parts or phases: mitigation (prevention), preparedness, response and recovery. In the event that a disaster does occur, Emergency Management acts to coordinate response personnel and resources to address immediate damage and assists in recovery efforts to return the community back to its pre-disaster state.

Watch "The Essential Emergency Manager" by the NY-NJ-CT-PA Regional Catastrophic Planning Team for a great description of how Emergency Management works.

What Do We Do?

The Maricopa County Department of Emergency Management (MCDEM) provides on-going planning to prevent and prepare for large-scale emergencies in Maricopa County. On a daily basis we:

  • Assist in Continuity of Operations (COOP) and Continuity of Government (COG) for Maricopa County and its cities, towns and fire districts.
  • Conduct training, drills and exercises for natural, man-made, and technological threats and hazards.
  • Coordinate off-site planning for the Palo Verde Generating Station (PVGS) in conjunction with the Arizona Department of Emergency and Military Affairs (DEMA).
  • Develop and maintain Emergency Operations Plans (EOPs) and Emergency Response Plans (ERPs) for Maricopa County and its cities, towns and fire districts.
  • Develop and maintain the Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan (MJHMP), a preventative plan to reduce the risk to people and property.
  • Maintain and test communications and warning systems to ensure rapid and accurate notification of impending emergencies.
  • Provide preparedness information to residents of Maricopa County via public outreach events and social media.

We coordinate response and recovery activities through implementation of emergency response plans during and after emergencies. In the event of a large-scale emergency we:

  • Activate communications and warning systems to ensure rapid and accurate notification of impending emergencies.
  • Assist our partners in recovery activities to restore the community.
  • Coordinate resources and response personnel.

Planning and implementation requires the support and assistance of many partners, including other county departments, local jurisdictions, the private sector and volunteer agencies. 

Mission & Vision

To be a respected and effective leader in providing all aspects of a comprehensive emergency management program for the people of Maricopa County in order to protect lives, property and the environment in the event of a major emergency.

 Program Goals 

  • Develop and maintain county and local level emergency operations plans (EOPs) that meet or exceed mandated state and federal requirements.
  • Enhance emergency multi-agency communication and coordination.
  • Enhance public awareness efforts to broaden knowledge of risks, threats and protective measures.
  • Maintain and enhance an effective communications and warning system and enhance countywide command and control.