Disaster preparedness and response

Libraries have an important role to play in the community's plans to prevent, mitigate, and respond to disasters.  A "disaster" is any emergency event that overwhelms a local community's resources available to respond. Examples of disasters that often threaten Montana communities include:

  • drought
  • flood
  • wildfire
  • earthquake
  • winter weather event
  • epidemics
  • chemical/petroleum spill or release

In addition to these disasters, the rising threat of domestic and foreign acts of violence or terrorism are a consideration for every community in Montana. 

Libraries are encouraged to reach out to their county Department of Emergency Services and well as local fire, EMS, police, transportation, and hospitals to explore how they can become part of community planning and response.  

To train library staff on disaster planning and response; see the following resources:

Ready, Willing & Enabled: Disaster Response and Preparedness in Libraries - presentation with notes;  presented by Joann Flick at MT State Library Fall Workshops 2015

Reading, Willing & Enabled scenarios - use these scenario packets to engage library staff and trustees in considering ways that the library could assist the community and in preparation of a disaster plan for the library.

Contact Jo Flick (CE Coordinator, Glacier County EMT, E Glacier volunteer firefighter, member of the MT Emergency Medical Services for Children Advisory Council) by email to schedule training: jflick@mt.gov.  Jo has received nationally certified trainng in disaster life support and the National Incident Command System.   

National Network of Libraries of Medicine is the FEMA-designated agency assigned to assist libraries in disaster preparedness, mitigation and responce.  Click here for more information and take the Library Disaster Readiness Test. 

A list of local contacts in Montana for emergency preparedness.