Franklin County Emergency Management and Homeland Security (FCEM&HS) utilizes the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Community Lifelines as guidance to increase effectiveness in disaster operations and better response to catastrophic incidents. Lifeline services are provided by public, private, and non-profit entities that are organic within the community. They include a range of critical day-to-day services that communities rely on to protect life and property. While most disruptions to these services are directly resolved by the organic lifeline service providers (e.g., power and utility companies), the priority of response operations following an incident is to stabilize the lifeline services by the most effective means available when they are destroyed or significantly disrupted.

The lifeline structure helps enable FCEM&HS and first responders to quickly assess whether critical services are disrupted and to determine which capabilities are required to deliver and re-establish those disrupted critical services. Simply stated, the lifelines provide a streamlined systematic way to assess a community’s critical vulnerabilities in the immediate aftermath of a disaster.