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Incident Command

The Incident Command System was originally established in California in response to natural disasters, and the complications of several agencies trying to cooperate to effectively cope with these disasters and save lives. A unified Incident Command eliminated structural and communication problems associated with agency cooperation during a national crisis.

Concepts of Incident Command include:

- Unity of Command

- Universal Terminology

- Management by Objective

- Flexible and Modular Organization

- Span-of-Control

Concepts were then integrated into the National Incident Management System (NIMS) in 2003.

NIMS is a comprehensive, national approach to incident management that is applicable at all jurisdictional levels and across functional disciplines. It is intended to:

- Be applicable across a full spectrum of potential incidents, hazards, and impacts, regardless of size, location or complexity

- Improve coordination and cooperation between public and private entities in a variety of incident management activities

- Provide a common standard for overall incident management

FEMA's NIMS Resource center details a:

- Five-Year NIMS Training Plan

- NRF Integrated Emergency Management Course (IEMC)

- NIMS Courses

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