Emergency Response



Katie Lipiecki | Risk Analysis Branch Chief
(215) 931-5500

Thomas Hughes | PEMA State Hazard Mitigation Officer
(717) 651-2726

Darlene E. Bracken | Emergency Management Specialist
PEMA Western Area Office
(724) 357-0106

Find Your County EMA

Marita Kelley | Deputy Director
Center of Local Government Services
(717) 720-7301

PA Department of Health
Southwest District | Greensburg, PA
(724) 830-2701

DEP Southwest Regional Offices
Ronald Schwartz | Regional Director
(412) 442-4000

DEP Northwest Regional Offices
James Miller | Regional Director
(814) 332-6945

DEP Local District Offices

Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD)
National VOAD
(703) 778-5088

Pennsylvania VOAD
Ed Robertson | erobertsons@diocesecpa.org

Western Region PA VOAD
Calvin Cook | Western Region Chair

County VOADs

Army Corps of Engineers, Pittsburgh District



Before the Flood

Source: https://www.redcross.org/get-help/how-to-prepare-for-emergencies/types-of-emergencies/flood.html

After the Flood

Debris Cleanup

During flood events, the movement and accumulation of woody debris, trash, and stream substrates such as sand, gravel, and other materials is common. Understanding when to remove debris is important because not all debris are harmful.

Woody debris that poses little risk to infrastructure are best left in place, thereby saving time and money for more critical work at other locations. Hanging trees, natural material wedged into banks, and stabilized woody debris within a stream should be left alone because they can provide habitat for fish and aquatic organisms.

During flood events, debris accumulation can impact water flow by blocking bridge and culvert openings, diverting streams, and causing erosion of banks. When debris poses a risk to infrastructure such as roads, bridges, or homes, it should be removed. Follow guidelines in the DEP Stream Maintenance Booklet.

Notify PA DEP about your project. If a permit is needed, they will provide assistance to ensure that you apply for the appropriate type of permit for your project.

Financial Assistance

After a flooding disaster, the chain of command for seeking assistance is as such:

  • Local government/state declares state of emergency
  • Governor requests federal assistance
  • President declares designated counties for federal assistance
  • Individuals and local governments apply to FEMA for assistance

You do not need to have a flood insurance policy to receive this disaster aid. Flood insurance will provide larger payouts to help with repairs, though. More information can be found from PEMA and DisasterAssitance.gov. See our information on grants for disaster mitigation and relief.



County Hazard Mitigation Plans

Hazard mitigation plans (HMPs) are developed by each county and are adopted by each community. The plans lay out how to mitigate and respond to identified hazards in the county. HMPs are needed to receive certain types of non-emergency federal hazard assistance. These plans should be updated every 5 years and submitted to FEMA for approval.

  • Allegheny – updated 2015, expires Jan 2021
  • Armstrong – 2018 draft, expires Dec 2019
  • Beaver – updated 2016, expires Oct 2021
  • Butler – updated 2010, expires April 2021
  • Fayette – updated 2017, expiresΒ  Sept. 2022
  • Greene – 2016 draft, plan currently expired
  • Indiana – updated 2018, expires
  • Lawrence – updated 2015, expires April 2021
  • Washington – updated 2015, expires Sept. 2020
  • Westmoreland – updated 2015, expires Jan 2020


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 Regional Information & Technical Resources

SPC Water Resource Center