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Inside the Emergency Operations Center during a disaster drill

Our Mission

Benton County Emergency Management's mission is to minimize the impact of disasters on the people, property, economy and environment of Benton County.  By doing these things, we enhance the safety of Benton County Residents.

Benton County Emergency Management (BCEM) works with that mission in mind, while fulfilling the following responsibilities:

Disaster Planning
- BCEM develops and updates comprehensive disaster preparedness plans for natural and man-made disasters that may occur in Benton County.  Planning includes identifying hazards and risks in our community and assessing our vulnerability.

Education - BCEM trains and prepares elected and appointed public officials, paid and volunteer responders, private citizens and businesses for response to and recovery from disasters and other hazards. 

- BCEM identifies and coordinates resources before, during and after a disaster for the protection and resilience of Benton County, its citizens and economy.

BCEM prepares for and responds to both natural and man-made disasters.   Natural hazards in our area include floods, wildfires and ice storms.  BCEM planners also prepare for emergencies at the Hanford Site, Energy Northwest's Columbia Generating Station and the Umatilla Chemical Depot.
BCEM maintains the Benton County Emergency Operations Center (EOC), located in Richland, to provide for a coordinated emergency response.  The EOC provides workspace, communications and information systems, maps, displays and decision aids to support the direction and control of emergency response activities.

Inside the Emergency Operations Center during a disaster drill

Hazard Mitigation Plan

Benton County and the City of Richland have both developed Hazard Mitigation Plans.  The mitigation plans identify steps that can be taken to eliminate or minimize the threat to persons and property posed by potential disasters, such as windstorms, fires, floods and earthquakes.  To view Benton County's Hazard Mitigation Plan, click here.