The Civil Defence Emergency Management priority is public safety; reducing the loss of life and injury, and relieving the distress of those affected by the disaster.
If a state of emergency is in force, you must follow all instructions given by emergency services and civil defence.
Civil Defence is often involved in localised events such as floods and storms, monitoring conditions throughout the troubled district, tracking weather patterns and keeping an overview to ensure safety.
Its role widens when an official state of national or local emergency is declared under section 68 or section 69 of the Civil Defence Emergency Management Act 2002. The CDEM Group will decide if an event is so serious that a state of emergency must be declared.
Once a declaration is made the Group Controller is the head of the CDEM Group response organisation and has two key responsibilities:
- To participate in the planning and implementation of activities which will prepare the community to respond effectively to any civil defence emergency;
- To lead, direct, and coordinate all resources as necessary to respond effectively to the impact of a disaster during a state of local emergency.
In Hawke's Bay, the Group Controllers have permanent, full-time jobs quite separate from their civil defence role but are trained in emergency management procedures.
The CDEM Group has also appointed local controllers for each of the districts within the region under section 27 of the CDEM Act. Within their respective districts, the local controllers manage their local emergencies and report to the Group Controller.