Benefits of a Local Emergency Planning Committee
The FOCUS of LEPCs is: "ALL-HAZARDS"
- Your community needs to be ready for anything: tornadoes, tank truck rollovers, equipment failure at a refinery, floods, etc. Can it survive a major tornado? A toxic gas release from industry?
- Your citizens have a right to know what chemicals are present in the community so they can take care of themselves if something were to happen.
- Local population knows their county better than anyone else. Which roads are best suited for evacuation? How do you get messages to Aunt Melba who doesn't have a Smartphone or computer and has satellite television? How many patients can you hospital or clinic handle at a time?
- This is your chance to make a difference in your community. A chance to build networks. Serves as a link between citizens, industry, and government in emergency planning and preparedness for the community.
- One person can't do it all. You need a panel of experienced people with appropriate backgrounds. They can assist local governments in preparing emergency response plans and evaluating the need for response resources.
- LEPC may have started with HAZMAT, but their focus has shifted to all hazards and has broadened the role the LEPC serves.
- A functioning LEPC is required by several grant programs. If you have an active LEPC, you may be able to get funds for training, planning, exercises and equipment.
- The LEPC serves as a forum to help involve citizens in the discussion on emergency planning and response.
- Participate in exercises and drills to improve community's preparedness.
- Develop public information programs.
- The LEPC work with industry toward the prevention of hazardous chemical accidents.
- Provides ongoing educational and training opportunities for each of the members.
- On the legal side it is required. If there is no LEPC receiving Tier II reports, tracking training, or making and practicing emergency plans and something happens there could be legal issues.