Emergency planning

Emergencies in Southampton

The Community Risk Register looks at the likelihood and impact of a range of risks to the whole of Hampshire & the Isle of Wight. The main categories considered are: natural events, human and animal diseases, major accidents and malicious attacks, rather than threats like terrorist incidents.

The Community Risk Register assesses only those risks most likely to happen, and the impact they would have across the county. Even within the county, a risk such as coastal flooding can have a very different impact.

If a risk is included in the Community Risk Register, it doesn’t mean it will happen. It means it is known to be a possibility, and organisations have made arrangements to reduce its impact. The register is updated annually.

The Community Risk Register is informed by the UK Government's National Risk Register and is produced by partners, including Southampton City Council, as part of the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Local Resilience Forum.

Prepare your family

It is always a good idea to have a plan for what you and your family would do in case you are ever caught up in an emergency.

A sudden emergency could mean that your home loses power. You could be without electricity for hours, or even days. Some emergencies could require you to leave your home in a hurry. A return to your property may not be possible for an extended period, and your property could experience damage. Ensuring you have suitable buildings and contents insurance in place is a great first step – and knowing how to contact your insurer in an emergency is important.

To help with this, and other considerations, Southampton City Council has worked with the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Local Resilience Forum to develop a Household Emergency Action Plan template to help you think through your own emergency procedures at home.

Prepare your business

Business continuity means planning what you would do to keep the essential activities of your business operating despite disruption. This disruption could affect your staff availability (e.g. sickness, industrial action), access to your systems (e.g. IT, communications), access to your premises (e.g. building fire) or your supply chains and other interdependencies. The benefits of having a business continuity plan include:

  • a clearer understanding of how your organisation works, and where it is vulnerable
  • minimising the impact of a crisis on yourself, your contractors, suppliers and customers
  • protecting the reputation of your business by being in control despite adverse circumstances
  • reducing the cost of any disruption by having planned for how to manage it in advance
  • the possibility of a reduction in your insurance premiums

Some useful resources for you to get started are:

Southampton City Council can offer further assistance with your organisation’s Business Continuity planning, training and exercising on a paid-for consultancy basis. Please contact BC@southampton.gov.uk for further details.

Prepare your community

The emergency services have to prioritise those in greatest need during an emergency. Communities may need to rely on their own resources until professional help arrives.Many communities spontaneously help one another in times of need. But communities who have prepared in advance are able to cope better and recover faster. If a community is prepared for possible risks you can reduce the impact on your homes and businesses.

Further advice on how to put together community plans can be found on the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Local Resilience Forum webpage

About emergency planning

What is the Civil Contingencies Act and what does it mean?

The Civil Contingencies Act (CCA), and related measures, delivers a single framework for civil protection in the UK. Under this legislation, Southampton City Council is designated a “Category 1 responder” meaning it has a duty to:

  • assess the risk of emergencies occurring and use this to inform contingency planning
  • put in place emergency plans
  • put in place business continuity management arrangements
  • put in place arrangements to make information available to the public about civil protection matters and maintain arrangements to warn, inform and advise the public in the event of an emergency
  • share information with other local responders to enhance co-ordination
  • co-operate with other local responders to enhance co-ordination and efficiency
  • provide advice and assistance to businesses and voluntary organisations about business continuity management

Emergency Preparedness, Resilience and Response (EPRR) at Southampton City Council

Southampton City Council and Portsmouth City Council share a joint EPRR service which facilitates the planning for, responding to and recovering from a range of emergencies across the two cities. The team develops and maintains emergency plans including Southampton City Council’s:

  • Coastal Pollution Plan – specific emergency plan focussed on Southampton City Council’s response to pollution incidents
  • Cold Weather Plan – specific emergency plan focussed on Southampton City Council’s response to cold weather
  • Emergency Response Plan  – generic emergency plan setting out how Southampton City Council will respond to an emergency in the city
  • Heatwave Plan – specific emergency plan focussed on Southampton City Council’s response to heatwave conditions
  • Reactor Emergency Plan – specific emergency plan required under the Radiation (Emergency Preparedness and Public Information) Regulations, describing the multi-agency response to a reactor emergency on board a nuclear-powered vessel visiting the designated berth in Southampton Docks. This is complemented by an information leaflet that is distributed to residents who live within the designated emergency planning zone around this berth

The team works closely with partner organisations across Hampshire and are an active member of the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Local Resilience Forum where joint work is undertaken to plan for a wider variety of emergencies requiring a “multi-agency” response.

If you wish to contact the team please email: emergency.planning@southampton.gov.uk