Emergency planning

What is Emergency Planning?

We have a legal duty to make sure that we cope well with any emergency or disruption.

Our aim is to raise awareness of hazards and threats and protect local people and the environment from them as best we can.


Why does the council need emergency plans?

We prepare emergency contingency plans to ensure that we can respond effectively to emergencies in the area and provide support for the emergency services and to the local community.

The plans provide guidance for staff on how to deal with emergency situations. The introduction of the Civil Contingencies Act 2004 requires local authorities, to prepare contingency plans and develop response arrangements for a wide range of major emergencies.


What type of emergency does the council plan for?

We have a number of plans in place which provide staff with appropriate guidance when responding to an incident.

The Emergency Response Procedure is a generic plan which can be used for many types of incidents. These could include major fires, floods, other severe weather events, gas explosions, and terrorist attacks. In the first stages of the emergency, we are likely to be asked for support by the Emergency Services.


Who is responsible for the council's emergency plans?

The Civil Contingencies Team manage our emergency plans and supporting arrangements on behalf of the Chief Executive.  Staff who are likely to be involved in a response participate in and/or observe planned exercises or events. Services will also work closely with the team to review or develop contingency plans.


How does the council get alerted to an incident?

The Emergency Services or a member of the public calling our Contact Centre can tell us that an incident is about to take place or has already happened.

Our response to the incident will be coordinated throughout the incident, by our managers depending on the scale of the incident

Senior management will be alerted by our Tactical Managers as part of a multi-agency response group. This will occur if the incident escalates and the Incident Management Suite has been activated.


Flooding

My property is flooded, who do I contact?

Your response to the following question will determine the appropriate point of contact.

What is the source of the water flooding the property?

If it is from the public road, contact Falkirk Council Roads Services (01324 504600 9:00am-5:00pm; 01324 503050 out of hours). The matter will be investigated and, if considered appropriate, sandbags could be provided.

If the source is a burn, river, or drainage ditch, contact the Falkirk Council Flood Prevention Team on the following numbers during working hours 01324 501028/501029/504994. Sand bags could be arranged and the matter investigated to confirm the riparian owner responsible for the watercourse. (Out of hours contact 01324 503050)

If the source is third party land i.e. a flow over land, and property is affected sandbags could be provided. Contact Falkirk Council on 01324 504600 during normal working hours or 01324 503050 out of hours. There may be a delivery charge for sand bags if the event is considered a civil matter for resolution between land owners.

If the source can be identified as the public sewer network, or a burst on the public water supply network, contact Scottish Water's Emergency number 0845 600 8855.

For further information on flood warning and responsibilities in the event of a flooding incident visit the SEPA web site www.sepa.org.uk/flooding.


Where can I get advice on flooding?

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) and the Scottish Government have very useful information on how to prepare for flooding.

Your house insurance company should be able to provide you with information.


Major accidents & hazards

Are there plans for emergencies such as oil and environmental pollution?

Yes, there are specific plans in place for these types of incident and the emergency services, local authority and industrial partners regularly test these plans.


If an incident took place in an industrial site, what measures are in place to ensure the safety of residents living near the site and how would they be informed?

The Control of Major Accident Hazards Regulations ensure that industrial companies provide emergency leaflets with guidance and instructions and other relevant information to residents who live within the Public Information Zone (PIZ).


What do I do if I am affected by an incident?

It will very much depend on the incident type. Best guidance is to 'go in, stay in and tune in' to local radio and always listen to the advice provided by the Emergency Services. 


What happens if I need to be evacuated? Where will I go?

We, as far as possible, will provide care and welfare for you if affected by an emergency. We have a range of identified rest centres available for use.

These locations are provided for the temporary care and welfare of people who have been displaced in an emergency.

Volunteers and council staff teams have been trained in managing and operating these centres.


In the event of an emergency incident how will I find out what's going if I do not have access to the internet?

Local radio and TV stations will provide you with regular updates on the situation and any important developments. In certain circumstances loud-speakers may be used by emergency services in the area affected or they may carry out door-to door visits.