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May 2019

Annex 1

Annex 1: Summary of the statutory roles and responsibilities of Emergency

Responders (Source: Preparing Scotland, 2016)

Preparing Scotland is underpinned by the principal legislation involved, the Civil Contingencies Act 2004 (“the Act”) and the Civil Contingencies Act 2004 (Contingency Planning) (Scotland) Regulations 2005 (“the Regulations”).

This legislation outlines the key organisations responsible for ensuring the effective management of emergencies in Scotland. These are referred to in the legislation as follows:

Category 1 Responders
  • Local Authorities
  • Police
  • Fire
  • Ambulance
  • Health Boards
  • Scottish Environment Protection Agency
  • Maritime and Coastguard Agency


Category 2 Responders
  • Electricity Operators
  • Gas Suppliers
  • Scottish Water
  • Communications Providers
  • Railway Operators
  • Airport Operators
  • Harbour Authorities
  • NHS National Services Scotland
  • Health and Safety Executive


In addition to these above, other agencies can have an important role in the context of resilience. These include but are not confined to:

  • the military
  • the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS)
  • Transport Scotland
  • commercial organisations
  • the voluntary sector


(In performing their duties under the Act, Category 1 responders must have regard to the activities of voluntary organisations of a certain type (Regulation 17)


Regional Resilience Partnerships

Under the terms of the principal legislation, the structure which supports multi-agency Coordination is the Regional Resilience Partnership. Currently there are three partnerships in Scotland, based in the North, East and West.

These groups serve to bring together all the relevant organisations in an area to develop an effective approach in dealing with emergencies.


Legislative Duties

The Act and the Regulations place a number of legal duties upon Category 1 responders.

These are, in brief:

  1. Duty to assess risk
  2. Duty to maintain emergency plans
  3. Duty to maintain business continuity plans
  4. Duty to promote business continuity
  5. Duty to communicate with the public
  6. Duty to share information
  7. Duty to co-operate

For Category 2 responders the basic legislative principle is that they must co-operate with Category 1 responders in connection with the performance of their duties, including proper sharing of information.



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First published by the Scottish Government, March 2013 ISBN: 978-1-78256-433-1 (webonly) eBook first published by the Scottish Government, March 2013 ISBN: 978-1-78256-434-8 (ePub) Kindle eBook first published by the Scottish Government, March 2013 ISBN: 978-1-78256-435-5


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Published by the Scottish Government, March 2019

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