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Wisconsin State Emergency Operations Center

When an emergency occurs, each state agency carries out its responsibilities independent of other agencies. The activities of state agencies must be closely coordinated if the state is to respond effectively. The purpose of the State Emergency Operations Center is to facilitate that coordination.

Emergency Operations Center Status

Level 1 Event (Full Activation EOC)

Level 1 is a full activation of the State EOC with WEM, DMA, DHS (Dept. of Health Services), DNR, DOT Highways, State Patrol, DATCP, and DOC having representatives in the EOC. Other state agencies and volunteer organizations will be requested to send representatives to the EOC depending on the nature of the event and the need for additional support to local jurisdictions.

Level 2 Event (Partial Activation EOC)

Level 2 is a partial activation of the State EOC with WEM, DMA, DHS, DNR, DOT Highways, State Patrol, and voluntary organizations having representatives in the EOC.

Level 3 Event (Minimal Activation EOC)

Level 3 event will have minimal activation of the EOC. This activation is intended to actively monitor Severe Weather conditions in the state. Minimal WEM staff will report to the EOC to be able to more effectively monitor weather conditions in the state. At this level of event local units of government are not asking for state assistance or resources. Upon notification that a community has been damaged by severe weather the EOC will go to Level 2 activation.

Level 4 Event (Duty Officer System)

The WEM Duty Officer is on call 24 hours a day to receive calls from counties and local jurisdictions relating to emergency situations. A member of WEM management is also on call as the Senior Duty Officer to provide management direction to the Duty Officer when necessary. The WEM Duty Officer and Senior Duty Officer continuously monitor events around the state through frequent contacts with the National Weather Service, DOT, and County Emergency Management offices. In cases of severe weather the Duty Officer will activate a virtual EOC by establishing and E-Sponder site, contact the affected counties, coordinate with the JOC and maintain contact with the National Weather Service. When appropriate, the Public Information Officer will issue a press statement indicating that even though the EOC is not activated the state is monitoring the situation and that citizens should take precautionary measures.

Consideration for Determining Event Levels

The following factors will be considered in determining the level of the event and subsequent EOC activation.

  • Tornado Warnings for multiple counties resulting from a storm system passing through the state.
  • Winter storm or blizzard warning
  • Predicted rapid and heavy rate of snow fall
  • Imminent threat of flash flooding
  • Large evacuation
  • Shelters opening in response to large evacuations
  • Events that cause significant disruption to community activities and affect public safety
  • Closure of major portions of the Interstate system or Highway 41
  • Potential or actual impacts on critical facilities
  • Resource request or need for involvement of multiple state agencies
  • Other severe weather factors:
    • Number of counties affected
    • Population in the affected counties
    • Transportation and infrastructure affected
    • Ability of staff to respond to State EOC
    • Potential for extensive power outages
    • Timing of the weather event (i.e. holiday travel, on-going special events, etc.)