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Incident Command System (ICS) Training

The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) supports the emergency response community by promoting interagency cooperation and developing training that enhances response efforts.

An example of such support involves the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Emergency Response and its compliance efforts toward the Homeland Security Presidential Directive–5 (HSPD-5), which includes the implementation of National Incident Management System (NIMS)/Incident Command System (ICS) and the National Response Framework (NRF).

The ICS, which has been recognized for its training curricula that has exceeded national standards, is an on-scene, all-hazard incident management concept that was originally designed for emergency management agencies, but was later federalized. Its main purpose is to establish a standard, integrated organizational structure for incident response agencies across multiple jurisdictions.

The program includes training emergency responders in ICS at the systems-based level, position-specific level (Incident Commander, Safety Officer, Operations Section Chief, Planning Section Chief, Situation Unit Leader, Resources Unit Leader, etc.) and team level (Incident Management Team).

Alongside the implementation efforts, ORISE has also assisted DOE by designing full-function exercises, drills and tabletops that test the agency’s ability to respond to emergencies under the NRF using NIMS and ICS.

During the exercises, ORISE personnel have served as planners, controllers, evaluators, coaches and players/responders. As a result, ORISE has been instrumental in assisting DOE with the development of a NIMS/ICS compliant incident management team to support the coordination of a complex incident.

In 2009, ORISE provided custom-designed, field-level training specific to DOE emergency response for more than 150 responders primarily from DOE, but also from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The program has served as a model for HSPD-5 compliance within other offices at DOE as well as additional government agencies.