The Devon Emergency Planning Partnership (DEPP) includes both district and county emergency planning and aims to provide a single and sustainable emergency planning service to Devon communities.
DEPP aims to make Devon more resilient by having plans that are consistent, up to date and reflect current legislation and best practise. Staff are well trained and the partnership can speak as a single voice to influence others on behalf of Devon. It also makes sure that information coming from national or local networks is shared to make sure necessary changes to practice are made.
DEPP also offers “mutual aid” and support for Devon at times of greatest need. Each partner still maintains its own response, it’s just more joined up under DEPP.
The partnership aims to deliver:
- shared assessment of risk
- common templates for all plans, including response, recovery and business continuity and shared training to use these plans
- a shared commitment to maintaining the skills required by each partner to ensure a fast and effective response
- shared priority projects
- shared understanding and delivery of best practice
- closer working for local authorities under the Devon, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Resilience Forum (LRF) to improve support in the lead up to major incidents
There is a statutory responsibility under the Civil Contingencies Act 2004 to prepare plans for civil protection and to respond to emergency situations, alongside partner agencies.
Emergency plans are prepared for those situations considered to carry the greatest risk or threat to the communities of Devon. Plans are prepared and tested in advance in conjunction with the emergency services and other responders under the umbrella of the LRF.
DEPP undertakes and participates in the following functions
Risk assessment – the assessment of local risks can be found in the Community Risk Register, on the LRF website.
Business continuity – each local authority has plans in place to minimise any disruption to essential services. Plans cover a wide variety of emergency situations which may be through an external emergency, such as flooding or influenza pandemic, or through internal disruptions such as power failure or the loss of all or part of a building. We also try and encourage business continuity planning amongst small businesses and the voluntary sector.
Emergency response – trigger points are identified to invoke response mechanisms, which will include the opening of rest centres. Mutual aid agreements are in place to staff rest centres and other humanitarian aid sites that may be required. Call out arrangements are in place to notify duty officers when they need to coordinate the response.
Recovery – DEPP will help identify resources required to aid recovery from emergency situations, including the involvement of other parts of the local authority and other agencies.
Warning and informing – there is also a duty on councils to provide information to the public and business communities on dealing with emergencies. You’ll see this before, during and after any emergency.