expects that organizations and individuals may find it necessary or appropriate to make additions to the lists.


To ensure a successful planning and response effort for emergencies, there are a set of critical elements that are important at all response levels from the local to the national. Testimony to the committee identified a number of geospatial elements that were especially relevant. These are identified and explained below.


  • Develop standard, written operating procedures that integrate the use of geospatial information across all phases of emergency management at the municipal, state, and federal government levels. Where necessary, modify existing procedures to incorporate the use of geospatial information into the workflow and decision-making cycle of emergency managers at all levels as well as first responders.

  • Develop a geospatial team location at the emergency operations center. Provide a dedicated workspace, data, hardware, software, and infrastructure to support a geospatial team.

  • Establish a close working relationship between the state geographic information systems (GIS) coordinator and the state emergency management staff. Hold regular meetings between the state GIS coordinator and his or her emergency management counterparts to determine gaps between resources and needs. Develop an action plan to bridge those needs.

  • Establish relationships and coordinate activities. Establish working relationships with adjoining jurisdictions and between state and federal governments to share data and products prior to an event occurring. Colleges and universities, as well as national labs, also may have centers of geospatial expertise that could provide support in an emergency. If useful geospatial information is to be provided to the emergency response community in an incident, then all geospatial communities must be included in the process early on. At the local level, relationships must be established with geospatial professionals at the county and state levels to ensure that a coordinated approach is developed for the sharing of data prior to an event and for the distribution of products during an event. In addition, a methodology for obtaining regular inventories of useful local, county, state, and federal data must be established through the data custodians.

All of these relationships should ideally be built first at the local com-

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