FEMA National Incident Management System (NIMS) is intended for community use, including local, state, tribal, and government organizations, as well as individuals families and communities. NIMS aims to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to, and recover from incidents. They offer resources to achieve a “safe and resilient nation.”

The NIMS guide is for helping all personnel work together from incidents ranging from traffic violations to major disaster. The NIMA guide is 133 pages and was updated last in October 2017.

Resource Management is a guide to systematically manage resources including personnel, equipment, supplies, before and during incidents. One section within the preparedness subheading focuses on resource identification, another on acquiring, storing, and inventorying resources.

The Resource Management section provides recommendations for affectively acquiring and utilizing resources with the assumption that not all organizations will own or manage all resources necessary to address all potential threats.

Command and Coordination describes leadership positions and recommended structures with details on how these are supposed to manage incidences effectively and efficiently.

Communication and Information Management describes how to make and communicate decisions.

NIMS is not a recovery, disaster, or communications plan, but a systematic approach to incident management with concepts and principles that can be applied to all threats, hazards, and events. It is scalable and adaptable.

The efforts that lead to NIMS began in the 1970s as a firefighting resource in California and was heavily updated after the 2001 terrorist attacks to include nationwide incident management.

The NIMS Intelligence/Investigations Function Guidance and Field Operations Guide provides guidance on utilizing and integrating these resources while adhering to the NIMS document.

Natalya Swanson