FEMA Announces NIMCAST — The National Incident Management System Capability Assessment Support Tool (NIMCAST) is a self-assessment instrument for State, local, tribal, and private-sector and nongovernmental organizations to evaluate their jurisdiction's ability to effectively prepare for, prevent, respond to, and recover from domestic incidents, regardless of cause, size, or complexity. The National incident Management System (NIMS) and, by extension, the NIMCAST are designed to enhance the ability of the United States to manage domestic incidents by establishing a single, comprehensive system for incident management. NIMS provides a consistent nationwide approach for Federal, State, local, and tribal governments to work effectively and efficiently together to prepare for, prevent, respond to, and recover from domestic incidents, regardless of cause, size, or complexity. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Emergency Preparedness and Response Directorate developed the NIMCAST to contribute to the establishment of a national baseline for compliance by all State, local, and tribal jurisdictions with the NIMS. It will also include readiness metrics and elements that support the national preparedness goal, including standards for preparedness assessments and strategies and a system for assessing the Nation's overall preparedness to respond to major events, especially those involving acts of terrorism.
Seems like a great idea to me and a way to head off "apples" and "oranges" problems. One system, one common language - works better in allowing an escalating response to a problem. Imagine the confusion if every jursidiction developed its own approach.