top of page

The purpose of a Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC) is to enhance community preparedness, response, and recovery efforts in the face of potential hazards, emergencies, and disasters. LEPCs are established at the local level as mandated by the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) in the United States. Their main objectives include:

1. Hazard Identification and Planning: LEPCs identify potential hazards and risks that the community may face, ranging from natural disasters like hurricanes and earthquakes to man-made incidents like chemical spills or industrial accidents. This information forms the basis for creating emergency response plans tailored to the specific needs of the community.

2. Emergency Preparedness: LEPCs work to develop and maintain comprehensive emergency response plans that outline specific actions to be taken in various emergency scenarios. These plans involve collaboration among local government agencies, first responders, public health officials, private sector representatives, and community organizations.

3. Community Education and Outreach: LEPCs promote public awareness and education about potential hazards in the community. They provide information to residents, businesses, and organizations on how to prepare for emergencies, reduce risks, and respond effectively when disaster strikes.

4. Public Involvement: LEPCs engage with the community to gather input, address concerns, and involve citizens in the emergency planning process. Public participation ensures that emergency plans and strategies reflect the needs and priorities of the local population.

5. Training and Exercises: LEPCs organize training sessions and emergency drills to enhance the readiness of emergency responders, public officials, and community members. Regular exercises help test the effectiveness of emergency plans and identify areas for improvement.

6. Chemical Reporting and Right-to-Know: EPCRA mandates that LEPCs oversee the reporting of hazardous chemicals stored or used within the community. They ensure that facilities comply with reporting requirements and that information is accessible to the public through the Hazardous Materials Safety Data Sheets (SDS).

7. Continuous Improvement: LEPCs regularly review and update emergency plans and procedures based on lessons learned from past incidents, changes in the community's demographics, and advancements in emergency management practices.

In summary, a Local Emergency Planning Committee plays a vital role in creating a safer and more resilient community by bringing together diverse stakeholders to collaboratively plan for, respond to, and recover from emergencies and disasters.

bottom of page