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Exercises help organizations and communities build preparedness for threats and hazards. They provide a low-risk environment to test and validate plans, policies, procedures, and capabilities. 

Groups can identify resources or capabilities needed before, during, or after a response. They can pinpoint strengths and areas for improvement within programs.

PEMA Resources

Our training and exercise division puts together hazard-specific tabletop exercise manuals for the annual spring and fall exercises for county, local, and other stakeholders.

Stakeholders aren't obligated to use our situation manuals, and are encouraged to create their own workshops, drills, tabletop, functional, or full-scale exercises based on identified threats and hazards specific to their organizations.  

These resources are designed to assist stakeholders in meeting annual disaster drill/exercise requirements under PA Title 35 and other applicable authorities. They can be customized to meet the needs of each organization. 

FEMA Resources

The Federal Emergency Management Agency supports exercises:

    • By providing standardized guidance: Allows exercises to be designed conducted, and evaluated consistently across the U.S. Identifies a consistent way of planning for improvements.

    • Through the National Exercise Program: A two-year cycle of exercises designed to validate capabilities in the five mission areas. Provides design, development, conduct, and evaluation help for individual exercises for state, local, tribal, territorial, and other community partners.


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Browse FEMA's Online Resources

FEMA Exercise Page: Request support, learn about the exercise and evaluation program, and find exercise/preparedness tools. 

Youtube Videos: Learn about the exercise and evaluation process on YouTube.

Virtual Tabletop Exercises: FEMA regularly hosts virtual tabletop exercises on a variety of threats and hazards throughout the year.  Registration is required, and more information can be found at the link. We strongly encourage our stakeholders to take advantage of these opportunities. Schedule of tabletop opportunities.