FEMA is seeking input into the National Incident Management System (NIMS) refresh. NIMS provides a consistent nationwide approach and vocabulary to enable the whole community to work together seamlessly and manage all threats and hazards. NIMS applies to all incidents, regardless of cause, size, location or complexity.

FEMA is in the process of reviewing and refreshing NIMS and is seeking stakeholder input on the draft. The draft of the refreshed NIMS retains key concepts and principles from the 2004 and 2008 versions, while incorporating lessons learned from exercises and real world incidents, best practices, and changes in national policy, including updates to the National Preparedness System.

The draft NIMS:

  • Reiterates the concepts and principles of the original 2004 version and the updated 2008 version;
  • Reflects and incorporates lessons learned from exercises and real world incidents and policy updates, such as the National Preparedness System and NIMS-related guidance, including the 2013 NIMS Intelligence/Investigation Function Guidance and Field Operations Guide;
  • Reflects progress in resource typing and mutual aid and builds a foundation for the development of a national qualification system;
  • Clarifies that NIMS is more than just the Incident Command System (ICS) and that it applies to all stakeholders with roles in incident management across all five mission areas (Prevention, Protection, Mitigation, Response and Recovery);
  • Provides guidance on a common structure and activation levels for operations and coordination centers, including Emergency Operations Centers (EOC), through new Center Management System (CMS) guidance;
    • Note that while we will continue to track NIMS implementation, the adoption of CMS is not mandatory as part of preparedness grants;
  • Explains the relationship among ICS, CMS, and Multiagency Coordination Groups (MAC Groups); and
  • Enhances guidance on information management processes to improve data collection plans, social media integration and the use of geographic information systems (GIS).

View the draft version of the refreshed NIMS and feedback matrix here: