As home to St. Paul, Ramsey County is the state’s most densely populated county even though it is the smallest in area. Ramsey County, which is situated in “tornado alley,” experienced 67 tornadoes in the past 60 years. These normally occur during the spring; however, winter often brings dangerous ice storms and bitter cold weather.
Emergency Management in St. Paul, MN
The St. Paul Department of Emergency Management was created as a separate city department in April of 2007. It is responsible for coordinating the city’s response to natural disasters, hazardous materials incidents, acts of terrorism, etc. The St. Paul Emergency Operations Plan details emergency response functions in the event of a disaster. Because of St. Paul’s location at the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers, special attention is given to flood prevention and preparation. The department’s accomplishments to date include:
- Development of a city “All-hazard Mitigation Plan.”
- Establishment of a significant reserve of emergency equipment and supplies.
- Provision of emergency preparedness training to over 3,000 citizens and city employees.
How to Become an Emergency Management Specialist in Ramsey County
A career in emergency management requires at least a bachelor’s degree in emergency management; however, most employers are also looking for a certain amount of experience in the field. Volunteer work, such as that available through Ramsey County Emergency Services described above, can be a significant advantage.
In addition to government agencies, medical institutions, colleges/universities and large corporations, emergency management jobs in Ramsey County are often available at local public school districts. A good example is the St. Pail/Maplewood/Oakdale School District, which has established emergency response teams at every school in the district.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that emergency management jobs in Minnesota will increase 13 percent by 2018. Emergency Management Directors earn a mean annual salary of $71,100 in Minnesota; $77,920 in St. Paul. Open positions and online applications are available at the Ramsey County and/or the City of St. Paul websites.
Emergency Management in Ramsey County
Ramsey County Emergency Management and Homeland Security is responsible for coordinating emergency preparedness throughout the county. Its functions include:
- Developing and implementing emergency preparedness plans
- Educating the public about how to prepare for emergencies/disasters
- Maintaining a siren warning system
- Preparing for and responding to incidents from tornadoes to terrorist attacks
- Assisting local and county agencies before, during and after an emergency
- Working with state and federal emergency management agencies
- Training an extensive emergency volunteer organization
Ramsey County Emergency Services (RCES) is a group of highly trained, uniformed volunteers that support first responders and others at the scene of an emergency or disaster. Volunteers are required to complete at least three of four FEMA Independent Study Courses. RCES members perform such actions as:
- Helping displaced persons
- Setting up mobile lights
- Operating the Mobile Incident Command Center
- Coordinating resources