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NIMS Components

Command and Management

Command and Management is the incident command system for the NIMS. An incident command system is a common set of terminology and command structure that is used on an incident scene to provide effective management of all the resources involved in resolving the incident. The NIMS provides a national framework that will enable responders from throughout the Nation to work together on large scale or complex incidents.

The NIMS Command and Management is centered on three main areas, the Incident Command System (ICS), Multiagency Coordination Systems and Public Information Systems. NIMS ICS is based upon the National Wildfire Coordinating Group/FIRESCOPE ICS, which is the same system that has been used in New Jersey for over ten years. The NIMS ICS places higher emphasis on the incorporation of Intelligence and Information Sharing as a component of the Incident Command structure, either as liaison to the Incident Commander or at the field operations level.

NIMS Multiagency Coordination Systems (MACS) are a combination of facilities, equipment, personnel, procedures, and communications integrated into a common system with responsibility for coordinating and supporting domestic incident management activities. NIMS MACS will often be the local or State Emergency Operations Center.

NIMS Public Information Systems are Systems and protocols for communicating timely and accurate information to the public during crisis or emergency situations. The Public Information System may consist of a single Public Information Officer within the command structure or a larger Joint Information Center to support the information needs of the incident commander or unified command.

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Preparedness

NIMS Preparedness involves actions to establish and sustain prescribed levels of capability necessary to execute a full range of incident management operations. The NIMS envisions a unified approach to preparedness, integrating all levels of government and the private sector. NIMS Preparedness is implemented through a continuous cycle of planning, training, equipping, exercising, evaluating, and taking action to correct and mitigate.

The cornerstone of NIMS Preparedness is the Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) that defines the scope of preparedness and incident management activities necessary for that jurisdiction. Based upon the EOP each organization covered by the EOP should develop procedures that translate the tasking to that organization into specific action oriented checklists for use during incident management operations, including how the organization will accomplish its assigned tasks. This is accomplished through the development of four standard levels of procedural documents: Overview; Standard Operating Procedures; Field Operations Guides; and Job Aids. Additional planning will coordinate corrective action, mitigation and recovery.

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Resource Management

The NIMS provides only basic concepts and principles for Resource Management. The NIMS document promises the basic foundation for resource management provided in this chapter will be expanded and refined over time in a collaborative cross jurisdictional, cross disciplinary effort led by the NIMS Integration Center discussed in Chapter VII.

The basic NIMS Resource Management concept is:

Resource management involves coordinating and overseeing the application of tools, processes, and systems that provide incident managers with timely and appropriate resources during an incident. Resources include personnel, teams, facilities, equipment, and supplies. Generally, resource management coordination activities take place within EOCs.

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Communications and Information Management

NIMS Communications and Information Management is another area under development, as additional progress toward common communications and data standards and systems interoperability will be accomplished over time through a sustained collaborative effort facilitated by the NIMS Integration Center. The basic concept of NIMS Communications and Information Management is to develop a common operating picture for communications and systems interoperability. Upon full development of this section, full communications and systems interoperability may be required of local jurisdictions.

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Supporting Technology

NIMS Supporting Technology is intended to provide scientific and technological solutions to support ongoing NIMS integration. This will include the fostering of research and development along with the adoption of national standards.

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Ongoing Management and Maintenance

NIMS Ongoing Management and Maintenance will be accomplished by the NIMS Integration Center (NIC) through a multijurisdictional and multidisciplinary collaborative process. Already the NIC has issued guidance and technical assistance documents for the implementation of NIMS.

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