Agricultural Emergencies - Awareness

In areas where agriculture is an important industry a variety of emergencies and disasters can occur.
Agricultural Emergencies - Awareness - Articles


Program description and needs


In areas where agriculture is an important industry a variety of emergencies and disasters can occur. These range from trauma events or fires where emergency services disciplines are summoned; to zoonotic diseases where public and private health professionals come together; to disasters where farm animals are affected and multiple agencies and trained volunteers may respond side by side. Agricultural emergencies require responders to have specialized knowledge and skill to effectively and safely respond to and manage these varied emergencies.

Many of the disasters or emergencies may occur naturally such as floods, fires, explosions, or storm damage, and some may occur as intentional acts of terrorism, including diseases, chemicals, biological agents, radiologic or nuclear events, or explosions. Locating specialized resources and training for this wide range of topics is difficult. This course, and related operations level courses in Agricultural Emergencies brings this specialized training and lists of resources together in one training event.

Who should attend

  • First Responders who would like to improve their awareness of the uniqueness of emergencies involving agricultural settings.
  • Emergency First Responders who wish to develop specialized agricultural response skills.
  • Managers of emergency response organizations who want to understand procedures, techniques, and response activities unique to agricultural emergencies and disasters.
  • Community members and volunteer groups (CART, CERT, Humane Society, etc.) that have an interest in assisting emergency service personnel in emergencies involving animals and animal facilities in agricultural emergencies.
  • First Responders, community members, and volunteers who want to take the ODP approved Operations Level Agricultural Emergencies course, which includes Animal Emergencies in an Agricultural Environment or Emergency Rescue in an Agricultural Environment, must take this Agricultural Emergencies Awareness Level course as a prerequisite.


You must be a member or employee in good standing of a first response agency or organization (fire, EMS, law enforcement, agriculture, CART, etc.) and have completed the basic training of that agency or organization in accordance with the AHJ. At a minimum:

  • IS-100.a: Introduction to the Incident Command System,
  • IS-700.a: National Incident Management System (NIMS) and
  • Haz-Mat Awareness level.

Copies of pre-requisite certificates must be provided prior to entry into the class.

Topics covered

Farm Orientation; Agroterrorism and Farm Security; Animal Diseases and Biosecurity; Animal Behavior and Handling; Farm Trauma and Fire Emergencies; Confined Space and CBRNE Incidents and Emergency Preplanning Exercises.

Class objectives

  • List hazards that might be encountered on a farm or agricultural setting in their community.
  • Describe appropriate resources that should be requested to the scene of an emergency involving agricultural machinery, chemicals, structures, or animals.
  • List components of a farm/agricultural pre-plan and describe the importance of performing pre-plans.
  • Describe why the farm community needs a special training on emergency response and farm security.
  • Understand the terminology, definition, and importance of Agricultural Biosecurity.
  • Explain the importance of hardening a farm site to discourage illegal activity.
  • Identify the types of animals that can be found on local farms in their area.
  • Describe which animal diseases if introduced into US agriculture can have disastrous effects on the nation's farm economy.
  • List sources of information when dealing with a chemical emergency on a farm.
  • Describe the requirements farmers must follow related to chemical storage.
  • Describe visual cues to observe when animals are under stress.
  • Complete an emergency pre incident plan on a working farm.

Local resources needed

  • Classroom facilities adequate for number of registrants with tables and chairs.
  • Screen and white board.
  • Arrangements for breaks and lunches.
  • A farm of sufficient size and facilities that will allow class participants to tour in supervised group settings for 3 hour block of time. Specifics can be discussed with instructor. Consideration for transportation to and from farm site should be made