In the event of a major disaster, the Division's Emergency Operations Center would be activated, providing a central location for governmental operations to be conducted. A primary, EOC, and several secondary sites are available throughout the County. Additionally, the Division maintains a self-contained mobile command post that can be moved to specific disaster sites to provide shelter and augmented communication capability to on-scene commanders and their staff. The County also maintains a Hazardous Materials response unit, which augments each community's response supplies within Milwaukee County.



Milwaukee County, working in conjunction with Wisconsin Emergency Management (WEM) and Maxim Technologies (Maxim), prepared this Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) Plan (the Plan) to help guide and focus hazard mitigation activities.


Hazardous Materials Planning 

Another function of this Division is the staffing of the Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC). This committee is made up of individuals of various response disciplines. The Division under direction of the LEPC develops response plans in conjunction with first responders and selected facilities that produce, handle, store or transport designated hazardous materials. Additionally, the Division develops, annually, a County Wide hazardous materials plan.


Requirements of the EPCRA law are under Wisconsin Statute 166.20 and the Superfund Amendment Reauthorization Act of 1986 (SARA Title III) currently known as Emergency Planning – Community Right-To-Know Act (EPCRA). Information on EPCRA is available from US EPA at and Wisconsin's requirements and state reporting forms are available from


Milwaukee County Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC)


Each Wisconsin County is designated as an emergency planning district and has a Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC) to administer the local hazardous chemical planning program under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-To-Know Act, also known s SARA Title III. The Milwaukee County LEPC was established in 1988.


The Milwaukee County LEPC membership includes local elected officials, members of emergency response agencies (HazMat team, fire, law enforcement, health, etc.), staff from the Division of Emergency Management, representatives for transportation, public works, the media, community groups, environmental groups, and operators of affected facilities. The County Executive appoints members. The Milwaukee County LEPC meets at 8:30 a.m. on the second Monday of October, December, February, April, June, and September. The meetings are open to the public.




The Milwaukee County LEPC is responsible for the development of facility emergency response plans and receiving and maintaining filings of facility submissions regarding: emergency planning, hazardous chemical releases/spills, hazardous chemical inventory reporting, and toxic chemical release and use reporting. The Milwaukee County LEPC also maintains a countywide hazardous materials emergency response plan.


The Milwaukee County LEPC assesses the County HazMat response resources and equipment, responds to public requests for information under the "community right-to-know" law, and conducts HazMat training and exercises.


The Milwaukee County LEPC involves facilities, emergency response agencies, and other local government officials in annual exercises for the release of hazardous chemicals. These exercises focus on fixed facilities and/or transportation related issues.




Additionally, the Milwaukee County LEPC actively coordinates with local organizations, industry, and government agencies to educate the general public, employees, law enforcement, and first responders through outreach campaigns or educational seminars.



Hazardous chemicals are commonly stored at many businesses and industrial sites in above or below ground tanks, in drums, cylinders, cans, bags, bottles, jugs, or other containers. They are transported by trucks, railroads, waterways, by planes, and by pipelines. Many common everyday chemicals can produce serious hazards and consequences if handled improperly, released, or spilled. The key to safety is knowing what to do when a hazardous chemical incident occurs.


The Milwaukee County LEPC has a number of brochures available to the public that provide information on emergency procedures to follow when a hazardous chemical incident occurs in a community.


Under the Community-Right-To-Know aspect of the law, facility chemical inventory reports are on file with the Milwaukee County Clerk's Office for facilities that file annual Tier Two hazardous chemical inventory reports. Requests must be specific to a facility to include the name and location.




At Milwaukee County LEPC meetings, members representing emergency responders, industry, and the community actively participate in the emergency planning process for chemicals present on-site at facilities. They exchange ideas and information that contribute to effective, safe emergency planning for accidental chemical releases.


The Milwaukee County LEPC has developed a special process. Several steps are utilized during the development and updating of individual facility off-site emergency response plans. Each planning facility is visited to pre-plan for a hazardous chemical release. This information helps to prepare a hazard assessment for the facility, review the facility emergency response capabilities, and plan for a coordinated response with emergency response agencies.


The Milwaukee County LEPC Community Right-To-Know and Emergency Response Sub-committees then review the facility plan and information prior to the LEPC considering the approval of the plan. Specifically, chemical storage practices and safety, chemical protection and monitoring systems, facility on-site emergency procedures, and available facility emergency equipment are examined. The safety of emergency responders, employees, and the community are a priority during this review process.


The Community Right-To-Know Subcommittee meets monthly with facility representatives to enhance coordination between the facility and the fire departments and to discuss facility operations, on-site and off-site emergency response plans, on-site and off-site response capability, worker safety training, and information on facility chemical use, storage and disposal.


The subcommittee includes representatives from local fire departments, public health, and hazardous materials response.




Attention:  HazMat Planning Officer
821 W State Street
Milwaukee, WI 53233

Ph: (414) 278-4709

Overview of Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA)

Sec. 302/303 Emergency Planning for Chemical Releases

Emergency Planning Notification – SECTION 302 and SECTION 166.20, Wis. Stats., requires the owner or operator of a facility that has any extremely hazardous substances (EHS), present in amounts that equal or exceed the chemical-specific threshold planning quantity (TPQ), to notify the State Emergency Response Board (SERB) and the LEPC that the facility is subject to the planning provisions of the act. This requirement must be done within 60 days of the EHS being present at the facility at or above the TPQ. Affected facilities in Milwaukee County would send to the SERB, Form DMA 1003, Emergency Planning Notification Fee Statement, and send a copy of the document to the County LEPC.


Providing Emergency Planning Information – SECTION 303 and s. 166.20, Wis. Stats., requires an owner/operator subject to Section 302 to provide the LEPC with the name, address, and telephone numbers of a facility representative "who will participate in the emergency planning process as the facility emergency coordinator." Correspondence on business letterhead outlining responsibilities is acceptable. The LEPC will then develop the off-site plan in cooperation with the facility. The facility must provide the LEPC with any information that is requested and necessary to develop the plan.


Sec. 304 Emergency Release Notification


Emergency Release Notification – SECTION 304 and Section 166.20, Wis. Stats., requires the owner or operator of a facility to immediately provide verbal notification to the appropriate governmental entities; the National Response Center at 800 424-8802, the SERB at 800 943-0003, and the affected LEPC (Milwaukee County LEPC at 414 525-5770 that a release of a Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) hazardous substance or EPCRA extremely hazardous substance (EHS) has occurred which meets or exceeds the listed reportable quantity (RQ), when the release goes off-site. This is commonly referred to as the federal substance release reporting law. Submission of a written follow-up report to the SERB and the LEPC is also required.


The verbal notification shall include each of the following (to the extent known at the time of the verbal notice and so long as no delay in responding to the emergency results): 

  1. The time, location, cause, and duration of the release; 
  2. The chemical name or identity of substance(s) released;  
  3. An indication of whether the substance(s) is a Sec. 302 EHS;  
  4. An estimate of the quantity released;  
  5. The medium into which the substance(s) was released (air, water, soil, or combination);  
  6. A known or anticipated acute or chronic health risk associated with the substance(s) released;
  7. Where appropriate, advice regarding medical attention necessary for exposed individuals;
  8. Proper precautions to take as a result of the release (shelter in place or evacuation); and
  9. The name and telephone number of the person or persons to be contacted for furthers information.  

The written follow-up notification must be submitted as soon as is practical after the release to the SERB and Milwaukee County LEPC, and should include the following:

  1. Additional information available since the initial verbal notification;
  2. Actions taken to respond to and contain the release;
  3. Who responded to the release;
  4. Known or anticipated acute or chronic health risks; and
  5. Where appropriate, advice regarding medical attention.
Sec. 311 Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS)/Chemical List Submission

Material Safety data Sheet (MSDS) or MSDS Chemical List Submission – SECTION 311 and s. 166.20 Wis. Stats., states that the owner or operator of a facility, required under the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) to prepare or have available a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) for a hazardous chemical, must submit to the SERB, LEPC, and the local fire department, an MSDS for each hazardous chemical OR an MSDS Chemical List, listing hazardous chemicals grouped by hazard category, for each hazardous chemical present at a facility in quantities that equals or exceeds 10,000 pounds, and for EHS that are present at a facility in quantities that equal or exceed 500 pounds or the TPQ, whichever is less.

Section 311 is not an annual reporting requirement. However, revised MSDSs or MSDS chemical lists must be provided to SERB, LEPC, and the local fire department within three months after the discovery of significant new information concerning the hazardous chemical or when a new hazardous chemical becomes present at the facility above the established levels.



Sec. 312 Hazardous Chemical Inventory Reporting

Annual Hazardous Chemical Inventory Reporting – SECTION 312 AND S. 166.20, Wis. Stats., and Administrative Rule ERB 1, states that the owner/operator of a facility, required to prepare or have available a MSDS for a hazardous chemical under OSHA, shall submit by March 1st annually to the SERB, LEPC, and the local fire department with jurisdiction over the facility a completed emergency and hazardous chemical inventory form for the facility. Any hazardous chemicals present the preceding calendar year that equaled or exceeded the 10,000 pound threshold reporting quantity and any EHS present that equaled or exceeded 500 pounds or the TPQ, whichever is less, must be reported on the Tier Two Report unless a reporting exemption applies.


The following forms are available at

Inventory Fee Remittance Form

Inventory Fee Statement – Form 1004

Instructions for Form 1004

Tier Two Report Form – Form 1005

Instructions for Form 1005


Sec. 313 Toxic Chemical Release Reporting (Form R)
Toxic Chemical Release Reporting – SECTION 313 and s. 166.20, Wis. Stats., and Wisconsin Administrative Code ERB 3 requires the owner/operator of a facility with Standard Industrial Codes (SIC) 20-39, public and private agencies, or SIC codes 10-13, who have 10 or more full-time equivalent employees at the facility, to report by July 1st annually; toxic chemicals used at the facility, equal to or in excess of 10,000 pounds for the preceding year; and listed toxic chemicals manufactured (including importing) or processed at the facility, equal to or in excess of 25,000 pounds for the preceding year. Information must be reported on Toxic Chemical Release Form "R." For questions about Form "R," contact the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources at 608 266-9255. To obtain Form "R" packet on-line connect to .

Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Spill/Release Reporting


Wisconsin also has its own release/spill reporting law under s. 292.22, Wis. Stats. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has authority over the law and it is commonly referred to as the DNR spill law. The law requires that the release of any hazardous substance that has the potential to cause harm to human health and safety or the environment be promptly reported to the DNR. To provide notification, call the State hotline at 1 800 943-0003, use menu option #1.


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