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Article Cri­sis man­age­ment

Germany has developed a powerful emergency response system to deal with domestic situations of extraordinary threat or damage

A wide range of federal support (coordination, information, advice and resources) is provided in case of damage on a large scale or of national significance like natural disasters, industrial accidents, epidemics and threats posed by international terrorism.

National crisis management

The Federal Ministry of the Interior is the lead ministry for the Interministerial Panel on National Crisis Management, which provides the forum for interministerial coordination on strategic, organizational and procedural matters related to crisis management.

Crisis management at the federal level

Depending on the specific threat or emergency, the ministry with primary responsibility for the subject area concerned oversees the crisis management effort at the federal level.

Those ministries which can help with managing a threat or emergency have made arrangements (i.e. organizational/technical preparations, establishment of duty/stand-by schedules, designation of contacts) in order to be able to call up specific crisis task forces at short notice. The lead ministry’s crisis task force is responsible for coordination at the federal level and for coordinating with the states affected by the threat or emergency.

At the same time, the other ministries ensure that liaison officers can be seconded at short notice to the lead ministry’s crisis task force at its request. All ministries have designated contact persons for crisis management and counter-terrorism who are responsible for in-house planning and interministerial coordination and are members of the Interministerial Panel on National Crisis Management.

Crisis management by the federal states (Länder)

In accordance with the Constitution, which gives the federal states the power to legislate on police-led threat prevention, rescue services, fire protection and fire services as well as disaster control and management, the states have enacted their own laws in these areas.

Interministerial, interstate crisis management exercises (LÜKEX)

The federal and state crisis management system has been tested in many interministerial and interstate exercises (LÜKEX) since 2004. The next exercise is planned for 2018 and will focus on a gas shortage scenario. The federal and state governments have agreed to conduct these exercises every two years.

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