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Crisis- and disaster management

In the Euregion Meuse-Rhine, competencies in the field of crisis- and disaster management are spread over multiple administrative levels in the three countries. In Belgium, this is the task of the national government. In the Netherlands and Germany, competencies can be found at the regional level. This results in an imbalance between the levels at which decisions can be made in the three countries. Nevertheless, EMRIC has succeeded in making operational agreements for cross-border assistance during large scale incidents and disasters. These agreements resulted from agreements between the three countries, to which the Euregion Meuse-Rhine belongs. Furthermore, agreements have been made between the EMRIC partners (for further information on this, please have a look at the legal documents on our website). 

During large-scale incidents and disasters, many resources and personnel are needed. Here, the principle of scaling-up is used, where assistance is requested from neighbouring regions. In the Euregion Meuse-Rhine, when referring to neighbours, we often mean neighbours from abroad. Therefore, agreements on cross-border assistance during large-scale incidents and disasters have been made within EMRIC. In the so-called Eumed- and Emric plans, these agreements have been documented. These plans are generic plans. In the Eumed plan, acute medical care assistance is arranged. In the Emric plan, assistance for fighting fires, technical assistance, and assistance for CBRN incidents is arranged. 

Assistance is requested at the neighbouring dispatch centre, making use of key words that are pronounceable and understandable in the three languages of the Euregion Meuse-Rhine. In addition, the Eumed- and Emric plans arrange where neighbouring rescue services will gather, who is responsible for coordination at the incident scene, as well as how the deployment will commence. The Eumed plan also contains an overview of hospital capacities, as well as patient registration procedures. 

During large-scale incidents and disasters, information exchange is of the utmost important. Within the information exchange plan, agreements have been made to establish clarity on what needs to be reported and how this is done. For the first  notification, tri-lingual forms have been developed. After the first notification has been sent, services can follow how the incident develops, using national or regional crisis management systems (LCM, ICMS).