Hartford County constitutes Region three of the Connecticut Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security (DEMHS). Unlike other states, Connecticut does not empower county governments to develop county-wide emergency management programs. Instead this power remains vested in the DEMHS. Hartford serves as the seat for Region three and hosts the Emergency Operations Center.
Among the many programs that the DEMHS operates in Hartford County is the Radiological Emergency Preparedness section. This unit consists of a supervisor and four program specialists who develop training programs and exercises as well as contingency planning for a failure at the Millstone Station nuclear power plant. The plans and exercises been developed with the cooperation and approval of federal agencies including the Department of Homeland Security and Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
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Training and Qualifications for Emergency Management Jobs in Hartford County, Connecticut
A number of public and private agencies employ emergency management professionals in Hartford County, Connecticut. These professionals may specialize in emergency medicine, public health, law enforcement or homeland security and typically possess qualifications similar to these:
- Graduation from an accredited college or university with a bachelor’s degree in
- Emergency management
- Terrorism studies
- Information science
- Law enforcement
- Public health
- Public administration
- At least three to five years of experience in the fields of homeland security or disaster preparedness
- Strong abilities in written and verbal communication
- Knowledge of Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program, National Response Framework and National Incident Management System
The nationally recognized Emergency Management Institute is often the most important training resource for emergency management specialists and coordinators. This federal agency offers a wider variety of emergency management courses in Hartford County, Connecticut including:
- Radiological Emergency Management
- Hazardous Materials
- Animals in Disaster: Awareness and Preparedness
- Civil Rights and FEMA Disaster Assistance
- Guide to Points of Distribution
Another important organization is the International Association of Emergency Managers, which certifies professionals as Certified Emergency Managers (CEM) or Associate Emergency Managers (AEM).
A History of Natural Disasters in Hartford County
Since the 1940s, Hartford County has 45 major tornado events with a magnitude of category two or higher. In 1973 a Category Four tornado touched down in Hartford killing four residents and injuring 36. The resulting damage was estimated at $25 million. This county has also experienced 446 floods and more than 2,100 thunderstorms or windstorms.
On July 6, 1944, Hartford experiences one of the worst fires in U.S. history. A fire broke out at a show by Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus with almost 7,000 people in attendance. The fire started small but it contributed to a power failure that prevented circus managers from properly directing customers. Once panic ensued, many of the customers could not exit the tent. The fire spread rapidly due to wax on the tent and the tent’s collapse. Almost 170 people were killed and 700 injured.