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Over the last decade there have been many changes to Victoria's emergency management arrangements.

Independent inquiries and reviews following significant Victorian emergencies including the devastating 2009 bushfires, the 2010-11 floods, the 2014 Hazelwood Coal Mine fire and 2016 thunderstorm asthma event have aimed to improve the way we prepare for, respond to and recover from emergencies such as bushfire, flood, storm and heatwave.

For example, Victoria takes an ‘all hazards, all communities’ approach to emergency management. This approach places greater emphasis on building community resilience; improving coordination and cooperation between agencies; providing clear and timely warnings and information; and offering tailored and inclusive services for all Victorians.

It is now worth reviewing if our emergency management arrangements are bringing better outcomes for Victorians – before, during and after emergencies.

The Inspector-General for Emergency Management (IGEM) is conducting a broad review of emergency management reform to be completed by December 2019.

This significant review is being conducted over an 18-month period. It will involve a range of opportunities for individuals, organisations and emergency management agencies to share their insights and experiences.

Ultimately, the review will allow IGEM to understand if Victoria’s emergency management arrangements are bringing better outcomes for our communities.

What direction this review takes and what issues it focuses on is not fully decided.

To help us work out our review's direction, we're asking you to tell us what you believe is working well and what could be done better to prepare for, respond to and recover from emergencies.

You are welcome to provide your experiences and views on any aspect of emergency management.

In addition, our extensive research has identified themes and issues commonly examined over the past ten years. If you require some additional information before you respond, reading our overview paper '10 Years of reform - common themes' maybe helpful when providing your views.

Sharing your experiences and views will help shape this review of emergency management reform.

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Frequently asked questions

Emergency management involves the plans, structures and arrangements which are established to bring together the endeavours of government, voluntary and private organisations and communities in a comprehensive and coordinated way to deal with the whole spectrum of emergency needs, including prevention, response and recovery.

Victoria’s emergency management arrangements cater for dealing with emergencies of all sizes, from small to very large. In particular, they deal with emergencies where more than one organisation is involved.

The Emergency Management Act defines the emergency management sector to include agencies, bodies, departments and other persons who have a responsibility, function or other role in emergency management.

The safety of Victorians is a priority for the Victorian Government.

Response to significant emergencies including the devastating 2009 Victorian Bushfires, the 2010-11 floods, the 2014 Hazelwood coal mine fire and 2016 thunderstorm asthma event has introduced changes to the way Victoria prepares, responds and recovers from emergencies.

Conducting this review will allow IGEM to understand if the improvements introduced over the past 10 years are bringing better outcomes for our communities before, during and after emergencies such as fire, flood, storm and heatwave.

In late January 2018, IGEM released its Annual Forward Plan of Reviews 2018 and Forward Projection of Reviews.

This confirmed IGEM would conduct a review of emergency management reform since 2009.

You can read this document at


IGEM is not re-examining event details, nor the findings or recommendations made by inquiries and policy papers such as:

  • 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission
  • Review of the 2010–11 Flood Warnings & Response
  • Victorian Emergency Management Reform White Paper - 2012
  • 2014 Hazelwood Mine Fire Inquiry
  • Review of response to the thunderstorm asthma event of 21–22 November 2016.

IGEM will not re-address the monitoring activities conducted and acquitted on behalf of the Victorian Government, other than where communities raise concerns as to the longer-term effectiveness of strategies implemented in response to recommendations made.


IGEM is also working with government and non-government organisations and local government to contribute to scoping the review.

Once IGEM has finalised the scope of this review, we will open another period of public engagement in conducting this review.

Organisations involved in this review include:

  • Australian Red Cross
  • Country Fire Authority (CFA)
  • Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR)
  • Department of Education and Training (DET)
  • Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP)
  • Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)
  • Department of Premier and Cabinet (DPC)
  • Department of Treasury and Finance (DTF)
  • Emergency Management Victoria (EMV)
  • Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority (ESTA)
  • Local Government Victoria (LGV)
  • Metropolitan Fire and Emergency Services Board (MFB)
  • Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV)
  • Victorian Council of Churches (VCC)
  • Victorian Council of Social Service (VCOSS)
  • Victoria Police (VicPol)
  • Victoria State Emergency Service (VICSES)

How we use your information

Your insights and experiences are valuable to us. Your input will be reviewed and may be used to shape the approach to this review.

The information you share with us will be confidential, will not be published and anonymity preserved. It will be held by the Inspector-General for Emergency Management and only used for the purposes of this review.

We'd also like to keep you updated as our review progresses, including how we used information shared and future consultations.

You can provide your email through this page, visit us online or follow us on Twitter @IGEM_Vic.