7-900 Emergency Response Procedures

7-900 Emergency Response Procedures


Although emergency situations vary in nature and scope, they have common police objectives:

  1. Life safety – protection of life and injury reduction
  2. Preservation of property and the environment
  3. Incident stabilization – restoration of order
  4. Proper notification of appropriate authorities
  5. Incident command responsibility
  6. Collection and preservation of evidence
  7. Proper recording of all actions and reporting

The ranking officer or supervisor at the scene of any emergency is the on-scene Incident Commander until relieved of this responsibility by a higher authority. At the scene of multi-agency or multi-department responses, the ranking Fire Department officer will most often be the on-scene Incident Commander, with police functions being traffic control, security and evacuation assistance, in accordance with the City’s Emergency Operations Plan, Annex F.



Sworn personnel called in for an emergency callback shall report to the location of their duty assignment with uniforms and equipment. Further assignments will be made from the precinct or duty assignments by supervisory personnel, as determined by the on-scene Incident Commander or the Emergency Operation Center Commander. Those officers on-duty at the time of a critical incident or emergency shall continue their existing assignments until reassigned by precinct or division commanders.

Supervisors at the precincts will take measures to secure their buildings, vehicles and facilities. All personnel will stand by at their duty assignment stations until further assignment is requested by the Watch Commander, the on-scene Incident Commander or the Emergency Operations Center Commander. If the precinct designated response cars and supervisors were not initially called out to the emergency scene, the designated squads and officers will also stand by at the precinct for further assignment by the on-scene command officers.

The ranking officer or supervisor at the scene of any emergency is the on-scene Incident Commander until relieved of this responsibility by a higher authority. The responsibilities of the on-scene Incident Commander will be passed to a higher level of command if relieved. If the emergency situation involves a multi-agency/department response, the incident command will be assumed by the ranking Fire Department officer at the scene. The Police Department responsibilities will include traffic control, on-scene security and assistance with any evaluations ordered. In any emergency response situation, police personnel will take orders from police supervisors only. (11/02/01)


(A-B) (06/30/05)

The U.S. Homeland Security Department maintains national terrorism alert levels. The levels indicate the level of threat nationwide of a terrorist attack. The current threat level is updated real time on the MPD Net. The MPD will respond as indicated below for the listed threat levels. The steps listed build upon each level meaning that when a threat level is raised, all of the steps taken in lower threat levels are to be continued as well as taking additional steps indicated for the higher threat level.

GREEN- Low Condition

  • Normal business practices- Maintain existing protective measures including call back lists, sound security practices and awareness.

BLUE- Guarded Condition

  • Check communications and response plans for accuracy and completeness.
  • Provide the public with information as necessary.
  • Report any unusual or suspicious activity at or near potential target sites.

YELLOW-Elevated Condition

  • All sworn personnel shall have full uniform available at work.
  • All sworn and Crime Lab personnel should have their PPE equipment in their squad.
  • Riot helmets/batons should be carried in each marked squad.
  • Increase surveillance and patrols should be conducted around potential target sites.

ORANGE- High Condition

  • All sworn personnel shall wear full uniform unless otherwise directed by a Bureau Head.
  • Non-sworn will wear and have their ID visible at all times.
  • All sworn and Crime Lab personnel shall have their PPE equipment in their squad.
  • Riot helmets/batons shall be carried in each marked squad.
  • Schedule and assignment changes for sworn and non-sworn will be announced as needed.
  • Personnel shall make contact with potential target sites in their area and verify contact information.
  • Personnel shall conduct proactive surveillance for suspicious activity at or near potential target sites on each shift.
  • Precincts and Units shall verify location and number of chemical protective gear available assigned to Precinct or Unit.
  • Precincts should have plans in place for immediate distribution of chemical protective gear to officers.
  • Precincts should pre-plan for response to emergencies/crowd control situations.
  • Commanders should review the City of Minneapolis Emergency Plan.

RED- Severe Condition

  • MPD Administration will pre-designate Incident Commanders (separate from Watch Commanders) to be available for EOC or Field Operations.
  • All police facilities shall be locked down and entry limited to police personnel only.
  • Parking and traffic restrictions will be imposed and strictly enforced around city hall and potential target sites throughout the city.
  • MPD may post uniformed security within city hall.
  • MPD may staff a 24-hour ERU response team for immediate tactical response needs.
  • Supervisors shall review emergency response procedures and related MPD policies and procedures with officers at roll calls.
  • Minimum sworn staffing levels shall be raised and vacations/off days will be limited, and staffing of non-sworn personnel will be in compliance with current applicable labor contracts.
  • Watch commanders will go on an alternate schedule, which will provide for 24 hour/ 7 day coverage.
  • All callback lists shall be checked and verified for accuracy.
  • Precincts shall pre-plan for response to emergencies/crowd control situations.
  • Precincts shall have plans in place for immediate distribution of chemical protective gear to officers.
  • Traditional response plans should be altered when responding to suspicious calls or to calls at potential target sites.
  • MPD Administration will pre-plan for EOC activation and incident command procedures.
  • Commanders shall review the City of Minneapolis Emergency Plan.
  • Based upon staffing and security needs, commanders of non-patrol units shall be prepared to establish skeleton staffing assignments for their units and advise their bureau head of personnel who would be available for emergency re-assignment.
  • In the event that 12 hour shifts become necessary, commanders shall pre-designate and notify all personnel what shift and hours (0600-1800 or 1800-0600) they will be expected to work keeping in mind that this may be subject to change depending on MPD staffing needs.
  • Schedule/assignment changes for sworn/non-sworn will be announced as needed.



In response to a nationwide increase of active shooter incidents, and incidents where suspects use high-powered, high-capacity assault rifles while committing crimes, qualified MPD Emergency Response Unit (ERU) personnel shall be required to carry with them the following equipment in addition to standard squad equipment.

  • ERU assigned tactical weapon
  • Ballistic helmet
  • Level III tactical vest

This equipment shall be placed in the trunk of the ERU officer’s police vehicle at the start of his/her patrol shift and removed at the end of the shift. If the equipment is needed at a scene, the ERU officer will advise MECC of his/her arrival at the scene with tactical weapons and equipment. If an Operation 100 has been called, the tactical decisions will be made by the on-scene ranking ERU member in concert with incident command. If an Operation 100 has not been called, the highest ranking department member at the scene shall command the incident. The equipment shall not be removed unless at least one of the following circumstances is present:

  • The ERU officer is responding to an “active shooter” situation where gunfire is present at the time of the officer’s arrival at the scene. An active shooter situation is defined as an ongoing or continuing act where the perpetrator is actively assaulting others with a firearm or deadly weapon.
  • The ERU officer is responding to, or is present at, an Operation 100.
  • The ERU officer is requested to participate in a high-risk search warrant entry or high-risk building search during their patrol shift.

MPD personnel shall remain cognizant of the fact that in many active shooter incidents, innocent lives are lost within the first few minutes of the incident. In some situations, this dictates the need to rapidly assess the situation and act quickly in order to save lives.



The Incident Command System is a model for the management of critical incidents and other emergencies that provides a common, uniform approach to the command and management of emergencies at the local, county and state levels. The incident command system will be used for single-agency responses, single-jurisdiction/multi-agency responses, and multi-jurisdiction/multi-agency emergency and disaster responses.

Some critical incidents involve only a police tactical response (SINGLE COMMAND) while other emergencies or disasters will require a planned, coordinated response from several departments, agencies or jurisdictions (UNIFIED COMMAND). A small-scale police incident may also escalate into an emergency requiring county, state and federal assistance.

Examples of critical incidents and emergencies are described as, but not limited to, public safety incidents that escalate beyond existing resources (large shooting scene; multiple shooting scenes, multiple emergency events); civil disturbances, riots, barricaded suspects, snipers, terrorist activities, hostage situations, hazardous materials accidents, major fires and explosions, aircraft crashes, weather disasters and nuclear, chemical and biological emergencies. This is not an all-inclusive list. The incident command system is designed to be used in any such situation.

All emergencies or critical incident management plans must have the same incident priorities:

  • Life safety;
  • Incident stabilization;
  • Property conservation.

When arriving at the scene of an emergency event, the on-scene Incident Commander SHALL:

1) On the radio, identify yourself as the Incident Commander

2) Rapidly assess:

  • What is the problem?
  • What are the objectives needed to bring this to a positive resolution?
  • What resources will be needed?
  • Will responding personnel need Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)?

3) Quickly determine or identify:

  • Perimeter locations….cold zone, warm zone, hot zone
  • Do people need to be evacuated or sheltered-in-place?
  • Is there a need for a separate radio frequency for the event?
  • Will weather conditions affect response plans? What is the wind direction?

4) Systematically:

  • Identify a Command Post location.
  • Identify Staging Area and Evacuation Area.
  • Request necessary personnel and resources to handle the event.
  • Insure that perimeters are adequate and held to prevent escalating the event.


  • Perimeter Control Officer
  • Staging Officer
  • Safety Officer
  • Any other functions necessary for incident command or unified command operations.

As a major emergency is reported, or a small incident escalates beyond existing resources, the following incident command responses will be observed:


  1. The Supervisor will announce on the radio that he/she has arrived, and IF the Supervisor will be taking over as INCIDENT COMMANDER.
  2. The Supervisor will assess the situation and any potential for escalation of the incident.
  3. The Supervisor will provide MECC with a description and assessment of the situation and request additional resources as needed, such as Precinct response cars, additional supervisors, SWAT or other specialized units, or Fire/EMS services to respond.
  4. The Supervisor should consider the need for a designated radio channel for incident management.
  5. The Supervisor in charge will then notify the on-duty Watch Commander or a Deputy Chief of Field Services.


  1. The on-duty Watch Commander or Deputy Chief will announce on the radio that he/she has arrived and IF the Watch Commander or Deputy Chief will be taking over as INCIDENT COMMANDER.
  2. The Watch Commander or Deputy Chief will again make an assessment of the incident, and advise MECC of any changes in the situation.
  3. The Watch Commander or Deputy Chief should consider the need for a designated radio channel for incident management.
  4. If additional police personnel are needed for life safety or containment of the incident, the Watch Commander or Deputy Chief should consider the use of Police Reserves and the Emergency Response Unit (ERU).


When activated through MECC by the Watch Commander, Precinct Supervisor or Deputy Chief, the MPD SWAT (ERU) will provide a mobile command vehicle, and the SWAT Commander will assume command of tactical police operations involving SWAT personnel.

The Watch Commander or Deputy Chief will assist as necessary, but will retain citywide supervisory responsibility.

Incident command responsibilities include:

  1. Assessments of incident priorities;
  2. Determination of the strategic objectives for the incident;
  3. Directing the activities of police personnel;
  4. Developing an appropriate incident management structure;
  5. Deployment of resources to specific objectives;
  6. Coordination of all incident activity;
  7. Providing for personal safety of responding personnel; and
  8. Authorization of information to be released to the media.


Police and Fire Department Response (with Public Works or other emergency agencies)

At most multi-agency/department emergencies, the Fire Department will assume the on-scene incident command with a designated on-scene Incident Commander, under a Unified Command System. At this time the Police Department responsibilities will include traffic control, incident/area security, and evacuation assistance when required.

Although separate departments or agencies may use mobile communications vans and operations centers, there will be only one incident command post under the direction of one single Incident Commander.

The Police Field Commander will maintain command of all police personnel and will use police communications as necessary, but will coordinate all police activity under the direction of the Fire Department on-scene Unified Incident Commander. Police personnel will receive direction and orders from police supervisors only, to insure unity of command and the police chain of command.

When activated and assembled at a designated staging area, Police Reserve officers will receive assignments through the Police Reserve Coordinator for traffic control, security or evacuation assistance. The Police Reserve unit may utilize their own mobile communications van with a separate radio net, but will coordinate with established police and fire channels used.

The on-scene Incident Commander may request the activation of an Emergency Operations Center (EOC) when field responsibilities exceed the capabilities of on-scene personnel. When established, the EOC will be staffed with City officials and department heads to assume the overall incident command. The on-scene Incident Commander will then report directly to the EOC Commander.


INCIDENT COMMANDER (I.C.): First Officer or Supervisor to arrive on the scene of a call for service where multiple units, scenes, or assisting agencies are dispatched. The Incident Commander has overall command of the incident, until properly relieved by a Supervisor of higher rank if necessary, and will be based at the incident command post. The priorities of the Incident Commander include:

  1. Assess incident priorities.
  2. Determine strategic goals and tactical objectives, not related to the operations of SWAT or ESU personnel.
  3. Identify a staging area, if needed.
  4. Develop and implement incident action plan.
  5. Develop appropriate incident management structure.
  6. Assess resource needs.
  7. Coordinate overall on-scene emergency activities.
  8. Authorize information to be released to the media.

PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER: disseminates information to the public and media.

STAGING OFFICER: responsible for identifying a single location or multiple locations, as needed, for resources to gather in preparation to respond to the emergency. Also keeps track of the availability of various resources for the incident.

SAFETY OFFICER: responsible for evaluating the overall incident scene for potential hazards, and makes recommendations to the incident commander during the incident operations.

PLANNING: group or individual responsible for planning and prioritizing the direction of the incident in order to accomplish the current mission of the operation.

LOGISTICS: group or individual responsible for securing resources in order to support operations during the incident.

FINANCE: tracks and records costs (via logs) for the operation.


7-906 PHASE I ALERT (11/02/01)


Supervisors called to a large disturbance or event requiring resources beyond the capabilities of a single precinct may request a Phase I Alert. Only a Watch Commander, or in their absence the ranking supervisor, may declare a Phase I Alert. The appropriate Deputy Chief of Field Services shall be notified by MECC as soon as possible. General duties of personnel in a Phase I Alert are:


  • If already at the scene of a disturbance, remain on the perimeter and await arrival of sufficient help.
  • Those at the scene shall give a preliminary evaluation to the ranking officer.
  • Other available officers within the precinct where the disturbance or emergency occurs shall proceed to the precinct station to obtain the necessary equipment and assignments.
  • Designated precinct response cars and supervisors shall await instructions for reporting to the scene of the disturbance or emergency.


  • On-scene supervisors shall assume incident command of the situation and provide MECC an evaluation of the disturbance or emergency. A request for a separate radio channel should also be considered at this time.
  • The on-scene supervisor shall notify the Watch Commander or other ranking officer of the situation and any additional resources required.

Precinct Commander or Ranking Officer:

  • The Precinct Commander, Bureau Head or other ranking officer will assume incident command and establish a Field Command Post (FCP).
  • The incident commander will then decide the course of action and the appropriate incident command model/structure.
  • The incident commander shall order the necessary personnel and equipment, beginning with the designated precinct response cars and supervisors.

7-907 PHASE II ALERT (11/02/01)


A Phase II Alert is a heightened state of readiness and alert due to a large disturbance or event that may threaten the welfare of the city. The Chief or a Bureau Head may call a Phase II Alert. In his/her absence, the on-duty Watch Commander may call a Phase II Alert, however the Chief or a Bureau Head must be notified as soon as possible. (11/23/93)

Under a Phase II Alert, the following additional steps shall be initiated:

  • Notification of Mayor and MECC of the Phase II Alert.
  • The Chief of Police or a designee will notify the Minnesota Duty Officer, who will notify the National Guard and federal law enforcement agencies of the Phase II alert.
  • Normal service calls will be limited to emergencies, and those squads responsible for handling calls in the precinct will be designated by the supervisor in charge of the precinct.
  • Security will be established at all police facilities. All doors and windows will be closed and locked. Only City employees will be allowed in police facilities. Two officers will be assigned security at the front of each facility.
  • If City Hall is threatened, a security detail shall be assigned for its protection. Security details shall also be assigned to protect squad vehicles and equipment at the Royalston Maintenance Facility and the Haaf Ramp.
  • Available personnel will stand by at their assigned precinct, unit or division until assigned by the FCP.
  • Emergency callback lists should be available in the event a Phase III Alert is called.
  • The Hennepin County Medical Center and the Hennepin County Medical Examiner shall be notified of the emergency. Two officers shall be assigned at each precinct to ready emergency equipment.
  • Personnel reporting to the FCP shall go to the staging area and shall be transported in as few vehicles as possible.
  • Officers reporting to the staging area for assignments will be logged in for assignments by a staging officer for accountability and safety.

7-908 PHASE III ALERT (11/02/01)


A Phase III Alert is a large-scale disturbance or event that requires resources beyond on-duty MPD personnel and affects the welfare of the city. A Phase III Alert may only be initiated by the Chief of Police, or in his/her absence, the next highest command officer. Under a Phase III Alert, the following additional steps shall be initiated:

  • An Emergency Operations Center (EOC) shall be established and commanded by the Chief or his/her designee for those critical incidents involving only the Police Department.
  • The mayor shall be notified of the Phase III Alert.
  • The Minnesota Duty Officer shall be notified of the Phase III Alert status in order to contact the State Patrol, National Guard and other Federal agencies.
  • For those large-scale disturbances or events involving the Fire Department and multiple city departments, an EOC will be established in room B-911 in City Hall and will be commanded by the Mayor. Command assistance will be provided by the Chief of Police and Deputy Chief of Field Services or other command staff designated by the Chief of Police.
  • During a Phase III Alert, the on-scene incident commander shall remain at the scene and take direction from the EOC. Police on-scene operations will be directed by the on-scene Incident Commander.
  • All police personnel will go on 12-hour shifts and immediate callbacks will be initiated. All days off will be canceled with the exception of vacations of more than four days.
  • Neighboring law enforcement agencies shall be notified of the disturbance or event and mutual aid will be requested if it is needed.
  • The Emergency Operations Center (EOC) shall inform other agencies of their reporting instructions.
  • In the event of a Phase III Alert, police responsibilities will include traffic control, on-scene and perimeter security, and evacuation assistance.



Commanders shall maintain an emergency callback roster that includes all employees under their command. A copy of the roster shall be distributed by the commanders to all employees who will be responsible for calling personnel back to work. The roster must be kept at the home and the work place of those employees subject to making callbacks.

The callback roster shall be updated by January 15th and July 15th each year. A copy of the updated callback roster shall be forwarded to the Operations Development Unit, who will coordinate distribution to MECC, the Watch Commander’s Office, and Administration. (10/22/96) (05/02/01)



Immediate callbacks will be initiated with a Phase III Alert. The following procedures shall be followed:

  • On-duty personnel shall remain at work until relieved.
  • The callback roster shall be utilized to contact all personnel not on duty. When an employee is contacted, the time he/she was notified, the estimated time of arrival or the time they were told to report to work shall be noted on the callback roster.
  • If an employee cannot be contacted on the first try, a second attempt will be made to contact them. If they still are not contacted, a notation shall be made on the callback roster as to the time and manner of the attempted contacts (i.e., message left on answering machine).
  • If an employee was not contacted by a person doing a callback, but learns of the callback via other sources, the employee shall immediately call their place of assignment, let it be known they are aware of the callback and find out when and where they are to report to work.
  • The MPD will go to two twelve-hour shifts during a Phase III Alert. Day Shift uniform personnel at the precincts will begin working an emergency shift from 0700 hours to 1900 hours. Night Shift uniform personnel at the precincts will be assigned to work 1900 hours to 0700 hours. Depending upon the time of announcement of twelve-hour shifts, shifts may be held-over until either 0700 or 1900 hours. Hours for all other personnel will be set at the time of the callback. (11/27/96)
  • All sworn personnel are to report to work in uniform unless directed otherwise. (04/01/93)


For large-scale disturbances or events involving only the MPD, the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) may be established in the police administrative offices and the Chief shall be the EOC Commander. When requested by the Incident Commander or on-scene Deputy Chief/Director, the EOC will be activated and staffed by the following personnel:

  • Chief of Police
  • A Deputy Chief
  • Director of the Emergency Communications & Technology Bureau
  • Administrative Assistant to the Chief
  • MPD Legal Advisor
  • MPD Public Information Officer
  • Additional personnel as needed

Responsibility for recording all information coming in and directions leaving the center belongs to the Administrative Assistant to the Chief. Other staff assignments may be made as necessary for planning, logistics, finance and media relations.

Incident command models require that the on-scene incident commander retain direct control and authority over all on-scene activity. The on-scene Incident Commander shall take direction from the EOC and will report all situational developments to them. All requests for additional personnel, equipment, and support of other City departments and outside agencies shall be forwarded to the EOC.

The EOC Commander will determine the incident command structure to be used and will establish the procedures required for the following:

  • Mass arrests and transportation arrangements
  • Arrest processing center location and teams for staffing
  • Video taping
  • Intelligence gathering
  • Use of weapons and force
  • Mutual aid requests and liaison with the Minnesota Duty Officer

The on-scene Incident Commander, whether a Police or Fire Department commander, may elect to designate on-scene operations, logistics, planning, and finance officers for large scale or complex emergency situations. These officers shall report directly to the on-scene Incident Commander. An officer assigned at the incident scene as a staging officer will be responsible for the recording of all reporting personnel, assignments made, and the inventory of available equipment and vehicles.


When a large-scale disturbance or event involves multiple City departments or agencies, the on-scene Incident Commander shall request the activation of an Emergency Operations Center in MECC through the Chief or Deputy Chief. The Phase III Alert may require a larger incident command structure and may be of a longer duration. The Mayor shall be notified when a Phase III Alert escalates, to report to the EOC in room B-911 in City Hall. The Chief of Police shall report to the EOC with the Deputy Chief of the Central Services Bureau until staffing requirements are later decided.

See Volume 6 – Procedures for requesting assistance under Mutual Aid and for requesting National Guard Assistance.


There are several multi-jurisdictional radio channels and 800 MHz talk groups that are currently available and may be activated by an incident commander for use in a major inter-jurisdictional incident or emergency within Hennepin County. MECC must be notified when using any of these resources so that they may notify the other radio system users as per Metro Radio Board requirements.

Available multi-jurisdictional radio resources:

HTAC-3 (Talk Group) MPD Portable Radio Zone A-13 (Mode 1 on mobile radios)

MINSEF (Talk Group) MPD Portable Radio Zone C-15 (Mode 2 on mobile radios)

Contact MECC if communication with non 800 MHz users is needed.

Metro Emergency (Talk Group): MPD Portable Radio Zone C-14 (Mode 2 on mobile radios)

Contact MECC if communication with non 800 MHz users is needed.

PTAC Talk Groups: MPD Portable Zone C-1 thru C-4 (Mode 2 on mobile radios)

Mettac-P Talk Group: MPD Portable Zone C-5 (Mode 2 on mobile radios)*

MIMS (155.37 MHz): Contact MECC for patch to an 800 MHz talk group.

*Mettac-P will likely become the standard for incidents involving multiple agencies. It is actually a combination of several VHF/UHF and three different 800 MHz systems (Eden Prairie, Bloomington and Minneapolis).



Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) pose a great threat to first responders and requires a unique and extraordinary police response. Often times, officers may not know that they are responding to such an incident when dispatched. Officers should be aware of signs and symptoms of any victims and should be mindful that any emergency could involve a weapon of mass destruction, particularly unknown trouble, explosions or medical emergencies. It is imperative that the responding officer/supervisor solicit as much information as possible from MECC and/or victims and witnesses in order to properly ascertain whether the call may involve WMD materials.


Weapon of Mass Destruction: Any destructive item/device that incorporates explosives, toxic chemicals, biological materials, radiological materials, or nuclear materials, and is designed to inflict mass casualties and destruction of human life and/or property.

Biological Weapons: Items or devices containing disease-causing microorganisms or toxins derived from or produced by living organisms.

Chemical Weapons: Items or devices containing toxic chemicals designed to kill victims by attacking systems of the human body. Chemical agents include:

  • Nerve Agents
  • Blood Agents
  • Choking Agents
  • Blister Agents

Explosive/Incendiary Weapons: Items or devices that contain explosive or incendiary material and are designed to inflict injury and property damage.

Radiological Weapons: Items or devices that contain and emit radiation, causing immediate and long-term human tissue damage and health effects.

Nuclear Weapons: Items or devices containing radioactive nuclear material with the ability to cause widespread catastrophic explosive damage and a wide release of radioactive material.

WMD Incident: When a weapon of mass destruction has been used and/or a known chemical, biological, or radiological substance is present.

WMD Threat: Any threat received whether verbal, non-verbal, or written that indicates the potential use of chemical, biological, radiological, explosive/incendiary or nuclear weapons of mass destruction.

Suspicious Package/Device: Any package or device that is reported to be unusual in nature due to any of the following factors: location, size, shape, odor, wrapping, markings, no known origin, etc.

Suspicious Substance: Any substance that is emitted from or contained within a suspicious package. These substances may be liquid, solid or gas.


Responsibilities of first responding officer:

If an officer responds to an incident which involves chemical, biological, radiological, explosive/incendiary, or nuclear materials he/she should do the following:

  • Notify MECC immediately that you suspect WMD materials and the type of material you suspect may be present.
  • Relay signs and symptoms of victims to MECC.
  • Be alert for visual signs of clouds of dust, liquid or gaseous materials in the area.
  • Do not enter an area you believe to be contaminated.
  • Take appropriate self-protection measures. Squad windows and air vents should be closed prior to responding to a suspected WMD incident. The squad PA system when possible, should be used to direct victims fleeing the incident to decontamination locations or areas where initial triage can safely occur outside the hot zone(s).
  • Be aware of secondary devices that may be designed to kill/incapacitate first responders.
  • Isolate area if possible.
  • Stay upwind and uphill if possible.
  • Do not perform first-aid on persons who you believe may have been exposed to chemical or radiological materials because you may become a victim yourself.
  • Solicit as much information as possible from victims and/or witnesses.
  • Take note of your surroundings and any suspicious persons, vehicles, aircraft, or incidents that may be present or occurring.

MECC Responsibilities:

If MECC believes that an incident may involve materials consistent with a weapon of mass destruction, an MPD supervisor shall be dispatched to the area with responding squads. MECC shall immediately make the below notifications and relay that there is a “potential WMD incident” and the type of incident if known.”

MECC required notifications are:

  • Minneapolis Fire Department
  • MPD Bomb Squad
  • Watch Commander/Police Chief and Administration
  • Local FBI Office
  • State Duty Officer
  • 55 th WMD Civil Support Team (directly or through State Duty Officer)

The following information should be relayed as soon as it becomes available:

  • Location of the incident
  • Command post location
  • Type and number of casualties if known
  • Victim signs/symptoms if known
  • Type of material suspected (i.e. chemical, biological, radiological, etc.)

Other notifications should be made as necessary consistent with the City of Minneapolis Emergency Plan.

Responsibilities of first responding supervisor:

Generally, the Minneapolis Fire Department will have overall command of a WMD incident until the scene is stabilized and victims are removed and/or decontaminated. The first responding MPD supervisor will be responsible for managing police resources until relieved by a higher ranking MPD official. The primary responsibility of the Minneapolis Police Department in response to a WMD incident is to establish and maintain a perimeter outside the contaminated area in order to accomplish the following objectives:

  • Prevent other persons from entering the contaminated area;
  • Prevent contaminated or potentially contaminated persons from leaving the area;
  • Maintain crowd and traffic control outside the contaminated area;
  • Preserve and protect the crime scene to the best of our ability.

MPD supervisors will work with the MFD incident commander to establish the following:

  • Location of command post;
  • Location of perimeter and hot, warm, and cold zones;
  • Location of decontamination area and decontamination procedures;
  • Location and availability of first aid;
  • Necessary safety precautions for responding police officers such as personal protective equipment and the potential for secondary devices. Position personnel and vehicles appropriately.

Any incident involving a weapon of mass destruction will be managed using the City of Minneapolis Emergency Plan and the Minnesota Incident Management System (MIMS), which utilizes the principles and structure of the Incident Command System or ICS.

Note: Although the FBI is charged with crisis management for a WMD incident, they will rely on local first responders for initial management and response. The MPD will work with the FBI on additional considerations as necessary.

Decontamination Procedures:

If an officer believes that he/she may have been contaminated and/or is exhibiting symptoms of chemical or radiological material, he/she should notify dispatch or other first responders in the area if possible. The officer should proceed to a safe decontamination area if possible. Normal decontamination procedures include:

  • Removal of all clothing;
  • Showering with large amounts of water;
  • Administration of prophylactics and/or drugs which can counter act the effects of chemical agents.


An officer may be dispatched to an incident in which use of a weapon of mass destruction has been threatened; however, no known event has occurred and there are no known casualties. If a suspicious substance or device is present and a threat has been received, officers should follow the guidelines listed below when responding to such incidents:

  • Isolate the area and do not enter an area where a suspicious substance/device may be present.
  • Notify MECC and request that a supervisor and the Bomb Squad respond.
  • MFD HAZMAT should be requested if necessary.
  • Keep those who have been potentially exposed to a suspicious substance isolated and at the scene until medical personnel have evaluated them or the incident has been deemed safe.
  • If possible, those exposed should wash exposed areas with soap and water.
  • Solicit as much information from witnesses about the threat and suspicious substance (i.e., suspect actions, substance color, odor, and form such as liquid, gas, solid, powder).
  • If there is no suspicious package or device present, but a threat of a WMD incident has been received, the officer shall notify his/her supervisor and MECC. MECC shall notify the Watch Commander. An offense report titled “BOMBT” shall be completed immediately and forwarded to the Bomb/Arson Unit for investigation and further notification of the FBI if required.


All MPD officers will be in enrolled in the department’s Respiratory Protective Equipment Program. Officers will go through a medical evaluation and a fit-testing procedure before being issued an Air Purifying Respirator (APR)/Gas Mask.

Only MPD-approved and issued APR’s/Gas Masks will be used by officers. Officers must have their MPD-issued APR/Gas Mask available at all times. Officers on patrol shall carry the APR/Gas Mask with them in their squad. Officers will use their APR/Gas Masks whenever they feel it is needed to protect themselves or when ordered to do so by a supervisor.

APR/Gas Masks will only protect the respiratory system against a limited number of hazards. Officers must keep in mind that many agents such as nerve gas, mustard gas, anthrax, small pox and chlorine gas, to name a few, can also enter a person’s system through contact with their skin or open wounds. Officers must keep these facts in mind when they are at a scene where chemical and/or biological agents may be present. Only a full chemical/biological suit can offer protection against most chemical/biological agents.

For the complete policy & procedure on the MPD’s Respiratory Protection Program, it can be found on the MPD Net under “Manuals.”