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ICS Canada (Incident Command System)

Incident Command System

The Incident Command System (ICS) is like a roadmap for handling emergencies in Canada. It helps leaders and teams work together smoothly during tough times. This teamwork makes it easier to respond well during emergencies. ICS Canada provides guides, training materials, and documents to help people understand and use the system better.

What is ICS?

The Incident Command System (ICS) is a set of regulations that assist people in charge during emergencies and events. ICS Canada is a group of organizations that work together to make sure everyone follows the guidelines of the Incident Command System . This makes it easier for different groups to work together and respond better during emergencies even if they’ve never met before. The ICS Canada materials include a guide on how the system works, training materials, and documents that explain how to manage things like training and certificates. For more information, please visit the ICS Canada Website.

The origins of ICS in Canada

In the 1990s, the Province of British Columbia was the first to implemented ICS in Canada. This was a significant move to manage large-scale situations. By 2002, the Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre (CIFFC) made a special Canadian version of ICS rules and training. They shared this with groups in charge of dealing with wildland fires across the country and what began as a plan for wildfires soon became a system for all kinds of emergencies. Over the years, more and more organizations adopted this system, making it widely accepted across Canada.

By 2009, CIFFC, along with partners like the Alberta Emergency Management Agency (AEMA) and Parks Canada, improved ICS to handle emergencies better in Canada. Together, they formed ICS Canada, bringing different groups together to manage emergencies effectively. ICS Canada also includes agencies like the Manitoba Office of the Fire Commissioner, Nova Scotia Emergency Management Office, PEI Emergency Measures Organization, Search and Rescue Volunteers Association of Canada, and Ground Search and Rescue Council of Canada.


What are the benefits of ICS training?

Incident Command System (ICS)ICS training offers several benefits:

  1. Improved Coordination: ICS training helps individuals understand the standardized system, facilitating better coordination during emergencies.
  2. Enhanced Communication: Training ensures that everyone uses the same language and communication methods, reducing confusion and enhancing overall communication efficiency.
  3. Quick Response: Trained personnel can respond more quickly and effectively to emergencies, minimizing potential damage and improving overall incident management.
  4. Structured Approach: The training provides a structured approach to incident management, ensuring that responders follow a standardized set of procedures and protocols.
  5. Resource Management: ICS training teaches effective resource management, ensuring that personnel and equipment are utilized efficiently during emergencies.
  6. Flexibility: Trained individuals can adapt to different types of incidents, making the system flexible and applicable to a wide range of emergency scenarios.
  7. Leadership Development: ICS training fosters leadership skills, enabling individuals to take on specific roles within the incident command structure and lead effectively during crises.
  8. Increased Safety: Proper training contributes to a safer working environment by ensuring that responders are aware of potential risks and follow established safety protocols.



Where can you get ICS Training in Canada?

Courses and training are provided by two sources: Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) and by ICS Canada recognized training providers.  For a complete listing of course providers in your area, please visit the ICS Canada links page.


At Total Prepare, we know you can never be “too prepared”.  We hope you are encouraged to look into this valuable training resource!

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