About ICS/UC and the NRS
The National Oil and Hazardous Substances Pollution Contingency Plan (NCP) states that the NRS functions as an ICS under the direction of the On-Scene Coordinator (OSC). The NCP also states that the basic framework for the NRS response management structure is a system (such as a unified command system) that brings together the functions of the local government, state government, federal government, and the Responsible Party (RP) to achieve an effective and efficient response. In addition, the Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) standards include the Incident Command System for emergency response.
When planned for and practiced, ICS/UC is viewed as the most effective response management system to address discharges or releases. As a result, the U.S. National Response Team (NRT) and Regional Response Teams (RRTs) endorse the use of ICS/UC and hope that this document helps the entire response community understand the basic concepts of ICS/UC. ICS/UC is an integrated and flexible structure that emphasizes cooperation and coordination in local, state, and federal responses to complex multi-jurisdictional, multi-agency incidents. This structure is necessary to use resources effectively â€“ whether the resource comes from the parties responsible for the release or discharge, the NRT and RRT federal agencies, or the affected local governments and states. Although ICS/UC was originally developed for multi-jurisdictional incidents, the NRT advocates ICS/UC as an effective tool for managing both large and small incidents, especially those involving hazardous substance releases or oil spills.
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