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Disaster Preparedness Program

The Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R) Disaster Preparedness Program (DPP) provides a breadth of preparedness, response, and recovery services to OR&R and the National Ocean Service (NOS) by focusing on all aspects of potential risk. The DPP coordinates current operational capabilities and knowledge from across NOS and NOAA to ensure that commerce, communities, and natural resources can recover as quickly as possible. 

A group of people posing for a photo.
Disaster Preparedness Program team at the NOAA Gulf of Mexico Disaster Response Center in Mobile, Alabama. Image credit: NOAA

The DPP expands on the regional program activity of the Gulf of Mexico Disaster Response Center (DRC) and uses NOAA’s expertise to ensure that response plans are reviewed and tested regularly, equipment is maintained, staff are well trained, and NOS response activities are effectively coordinated. The program aids NOS and partners who deliver critical disaster response services in events ranging from human-caused disasters such as oil spills to natural disasters such as hurricanes.

While we cannot always prevent natural or human-caused disasters, we can reduce their impacts. The need for timely and accurate information has never been greater. Recognizing this, DPP continues to lead the way in the science of preparedness. 

Our Services

The Disaster Preparedness Program is dedicated to providing services that allow NOS and our partners to move through the emergency management cycle efficiently, safely, and effectively.

  • Plan. Ensuring NOS emergency plans for continuity of operations are up-to-date and feasible.
  • Organize/Equip. Identify and resolve capacity needs to ensure NOS responders have the right resources, sufficient capacity, and adequate support to carry out mission-essential work.
  • Train. Emergency preparedness, response, and recovery training for NOAA field responders, federal partners, and state and local emergency managers.
  • Exercise. Annual exercises ensure the plans, personnel, and training are coordinated to deliver the best possible preparedness and response posture. 
  • Evaluate/Improve. A dedicated continuous improvement program to ensure NOS and our partners provide the best possible response when disaster strikes. 
  • Regional Coordination. Coordinators strategically placed around the country to provide regional expertise and guidance to federal and state partners.
  • Response. The DPP leads the NOS Incident Management Team to provide effective and efficient incident coordination and situational awareness during a response.
  • Recovery. Developing and instituting an NOAA-wide recovery framework to help communities and natural resources recover after a disaster or pollution event. 

Want to learn more about our program? Sign up to receive our quarterly newsletter and get the latest news and updates from NOAA’s Disaster Preparedness Program.

Last updated Friday, April 29, 2022 2:15pm PDT