Skip to main content
Department of Homeland Security Shield / FEMA

Center for
Domestic Preparedness

Main Content

Archived Articles


The exterior of St. John's Regional Medical Center displays the danger patients and workers experienced during the storm

CDP Training Affects Tornado Response: Joplin's Hospital Evacuates

In May 2011, as tornado sirens sounded, hospital workers at St. John's Regional Medical Center rushed to pull 183 patients to safety as one of the largest tornadoes on record bared down on their southwestern Missouri city. Breaking glass and the roar of the powerful storm deafened the dark hospital as power was lost.

Hazardous Materials Course Focus on WMD Attack and Response

The threats against America and its citizens has become real, and the need for ready responders is ever more critical. Response personnel must remain vigilant, and skilled with the preparedness knowledge to protect the citizens and cities they serve.

Nathan Paddock helps earthquake victims in Haiti

CDP Student Puts Specialized Training To Use Following Haiti Earthquake

My Name is Nathan Paddock. I work for the Unity Health System Emergency Center in Rochester, N.Y. In 2009 I attended the Hospital Emergency Response Training for Mass Casualty Incidents (HERT) course, Hands-On Training for CBRNE Incidents (HOT) course, and most recently graduated from the Hazard Assessment and Response Management for CBRNE Incidents (HARM) course. In February 2010, I had the oppor...

RAD Operations Training Improves Radiological Response

The recent earthquakes and subsequent radiological impacts in Japan have increased the awareness and interest in how communities respond to radioactive incidents. Despite the recent increased attention on radiological hazards, training for such a potential incident has been happening at the Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP) for the past four years.

CDP, AFC Offers Pro Board Certification

The Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP), located in Anniston, Ala., recently teamed with the Alabama Fire College (AFC) to offer Pro Board certifications to eligible first responders attending the Emergency Responder Hazardous Materials Technician for CBRNE (ERHM) incidents course. The Pro Board accreditation for the CDP curriculum under the umbrella of the AFC program provides an opportunity f...

The city of Minot, N.D. experienced the worst flooding in over 130 years in June 2011.

CDP Training Vital to North Dakota Flood Response

As Bill Brown received flood condition updates in June 2011, city officials were preparing for the worst overflow in more than 130 years. Brown, a retired captain with the Minot Police Department and now the Southwest Regional Emergency Response Coordinator for the North Dakota Department of Emergency Services, was making arrangements to staff the city's Emergency Operations Center (EOC) and coord...

Colorado responder Bill Mayfield inspects his protective mask as his team prepares to conduct scenario-based operations in a hazardous environment with suspected Weapons of Mass Destruction

Colorado Responder Credits CDP Training with Response Success

Colorado Responder Bill Mayfield has attended eight specialized training courses at FEMA's Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP) and has an impressive multi-disciplinary background in healthcare, fire fighting, emergency management, and hazardous materials.

Environmental Health Response to Alabama Tornadoes

The severe tornadoes that swept through Alabama on April 27, 2011 destroyed more than 6,000 square miles and claimed 248 lives. With power out and water systems and other public infrastructure destroyed following the storms, environmental health specialists were left with the significant challenge of keeping diseases from spreading as citizens dealt with unrefrigerated foods, waste, unfiltered wat...

Hands-On Training Showcases CDP Mass Casualty Exercise

The Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP) in Anniston, Ala. is known for its realistic, emergency response exercises. Responders attending the Hands-On Training for CBRNE Incidents (HOT-I) course will now have an added level of realism thanks to a school bus the CDP recently added to the simulated mass casualty exercise for each class.

Hazardous Materials Evidence Collection

Evidence collection processes have sometimes determined the outcome of criminal proceedings. However, the crime scenes of today are making the process more difficult with the potential recovery of chemicals, explosives, biological or radiological materials. These aspects make it even more paramount to follow procedures to ensure safety of on-scene personnel and successful prosecution of criminals.

Joan McMahon

Iowa Nurse Credits CDP Training For Successful Flood Response

When the Cedar River reached historic flood levels June 2008 and forced the evacuation of as many as 10,000 townspeople from nearby Cedar Rapids, Iowa, a local nurse knew exactly what to do thanks to specialized training she'd received from FEMA's Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP).

EMO Offers Hands-On Experience for All Disciplines

Known for offering extensive hands-on training in a mass casualty response, the Emergency Medical Operations (EMO) for CBRNE Incidents course providesfirst response personnel, serving in a variety of positions, necessary skills to perform during an emergency or catastrophic event. The Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP), located in Anniston, Ala., focuses its training on incident management and...

Tribal Pandemic Response Training for Oneida Indian Nation

In 1997, hundreds of citizens in Hong Kong were infected with Avian Flu. In 1999, another strain of the avian flu made Hong Kong headlines when two children were infected. Although the viruses didn’t result in a pandemic, the ability to move from birds to humans created alarm. Experts fear that an influenza pandemic such as the avian flu could become global in the not so distant future.

Mayor Richard Hildreth of Pacific, Wash., prepares for emergency responder training at the Center for Domestic Preparedness.

Mayors & First Responder Training

I recently completed the Hazard Assessment and Response Management (HARM) course, at FEMA’s Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP), in Anniston, Alabama, which trains students to conduct a multi-disciplined response to a Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, or Explosive incident. As a mayor charged with making key decisions that impact my local response teams during a major incident, advan...

It's Not Just Training, It's Preparedness

When the Center for Domestic Preparedness, located in Anniston, Ala., was founded in 1998, it was envisioned as a resident training facility that would train a maximum of 10,000 responders per year. In FY 2009, the CDP staff trained close to 99,000 responders from across the United States and its territories, well exceeding the initial expectations of the late ‘90s. Recently, the CDP celebrated it...

Moulage Casts Reality with Mock Injuries

At first it appears to be the set of Hollywood's latest horror film: torn tissue, blood, lacerations, broken bones and even vomit are enough to make the strongest person nauseous and woozy. But this isn't theater—it's the Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP) in Anniston, Ala.

Healthcare Leadership Offers Valuable, Relevant Training

Among the many emergency response courses offered at the Center for Domestic Preparedness in Anniston, Ala., the Healthcare Leadership and Decision-Making (HCL) course has defined its lineup of healthcare training

Incident Command: All Hazards Emergency Planning

Emergency responders training in today's climate are among some of the brightest citizens prepared to protect the nation and its territories. Responders are better educated and receive the most up-to-date training available.

Hazardous Materials Preparedness: Training For All-Hazards Response

The recent botched attempt to discharge explosive material in New York's Times Square may leave city leaders across America questioning their own levels of preparedness during an emergency.

Alabama Girl Scouts Earn Preparedness Patch

The Center for Domestic Preparedness (CDP) in Anniston, Ala., hosted more than 30 Girl Scouts Dec. 4. The goal of the visit was to assist the future leaders in earning the Preparedness Patch; a new program developed by the Girl Scouts of America and partnered with the Department of Homeland Security and Federal Emergency Management Agency.