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Emergency Response Guidelines and Regulations

  • By: David Alexander
  • In: Encyclopedia of Disaster Relief
  • Edited by: K. Bradley Penuel & Matt Statler
  • Subject:Public Health (general), Public Policy (general)

In the chaotic, rapidly changing, and somewhat unpredictable environment of an emergency, guidelines and regulations can help ensure that responses are safe, appropriate, and proportional. Guidelines are defined as nonbinding recommendations for action, while regulations (such as laws, ordinances, and norms) are legally or constitutionally binding. The four main reasons for developing such instruments are to ensure that emergency responses are ethical and have a suitable legal framework; efforts are harmonized efficiently; and when operations are likely to be dangerous, emergency responders are covered by health and safety regulations.

Standards are a subset of guidelines and regulations. A standard is a set of minimum specifications for the size, organization, or quality of a product or service. It may contain its own mechanism for certification of compliance, ...

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