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Latest Updates

Draft “Task Books” for Key Incident Command System Positions Available for Comment

Oct 18

Written by:
10/18/2011 9:36 AM  RssIcon

imageIt appears that the ICS Task Books that help evaluators judge ICS performance (2007 versions are online at have been newly revised in April 2011, and are now published as a draft docket currently undergoing a comment period as detailed in the October 4th Federal Register. These may be revisions of the original 1993 Wildland Fire evaluation forms that are still on the Department of Labor’s OSHA site.

OSHA’s eTools guide to the ICS system is a new find for me and fairly interesting - if a bit dated and lacking in depth.

Since the new ICS Task Books are written for someone evaluating a person’s performance in these positions, I do not see them as very helpful for the person actually performing the job! I continue to search for a basic guide and checklist for ICS personnel, something with some more depth than the OSHA eTool or the existing Job Aids, but in a handy format that could be carried and referenced in the field.

imageThe Red Cross has nice spiral bound guides for shelter managers and staff. Why can’t ICS staffers have something as practical as the Red Cross’ Shelter Field Guide & Shelter Manager’s Toolkit?!

Cynically, I suspect any usable job guides are locked away at the Emergency Management Institute in Emmitsburg and only available to those with time to take FEMA’s courses - but frankly could easily be somewhere on the Internet I’ve yet to uncover too. So to me, these newly revised Task Books are most useful as they contain the only detailed listing I’ve found of ICS staffer’s duties. Unfortunately they still need to be reverse engineered, decrypted, and extracted from these Task Books to be usable by the actual ICS personnel! (Please help me find something more usable if such a thing does exist by adding your comments below.)

imageFederal Register Vol. 76, No.192, October 4, 2011 - FEMA has published the Federal Register Notice [TEXT] [PDF] announcing that the “All-Hazard Position Task Books for Type 3 Incident Management Teams” are available for public review and comment. 

SUMMARY: The All-Hazard Position Task Books for Type 3 Incident Management Teams were developed to assist personnel achieve

qualifications in the All-Hazard ICS positions. The position task books also provide the documentation necessary for agencies and organizations to evaluate their personnel and certify their personnel as qualified to the positions. The position task books supplement the qualification requirements contained in the NIMS Job Titles, which specify any Education, Training, Experience, Physical/Medical Fitness, Currency, and Licensure/Certification for each position. The position task books have been derived from National Wildfire Coordinating Group position task books to leverage their successful experience in managing the qualifications of their personnel.  The position task books in this initial group contain:

    1. Incident Commander.

    2. Public Information Officer.

    3. Safety Officer.

    4. Liaison Officer.

    5. Operations Section Chief.

    6. Planning Section Chief

    7. Finance/Administration Section Chief.

    8. Logistics Section Chief.

    9. Service Branch Director/Support Branch Director.

    10. Branch Director (Operations Section).

    11. Division/Group Supervisor.

    12. Unit Leader.

    13. Strike Team/Task Force Leader.

    14. Technical Specialist.

DUE: Comments must be received by November 3, 2011, 11:59 PM ET.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by Docket ID FEMA-2011-0018, by one of the following methods:

· Federal eRulemaking Portal: Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

· E-mail: Include Docket ID FEMA-2011-0018 in the subject line of the message.

· Fax: 703-483-2999.

· Mail/Hand Delivery/Courier: Legislation, Regulations, & Policy Division, Office of Chief Counsel, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Room 835, 500 C Street, SW., Washington, DC 20472.

SOURCE: U.S. Gov Printing Office:

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tom Smith, National Integration Center, National Preparedness Directorate, Protection and National

Preparedness, 500 C Street, SW., Washington, DC 20472. Phone: 202-646-3850 or e-mail:

Task books links are below but can also be found at by entering “FEMA–2011–0018” into the ID search. 

Notice: All-Hazard Position Task Books for Type 3 Incident Management Teams

1 All- Hazards Incident Commander

2 All- Hazards Public Information Officer

3 All-Hazards Safety Officer

4 All- Hazards Liaison Officer

5 All- Hazards Operations Section Chief

6 All-Hazards Planning Section Chief

7 All- Hazards Finance/Administration Section Chief

8 All- Hazards Logistics Section Chief

9 All-Hazards Division/Group Supervisor

10 All-Hazards Unit Leader

11 All-Hazards Strike Team/Task Force Leader

Tags: ICS , EOC , training , NIMS
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