Office of Emergency Management

Partners in Preparedness

hands shaking in front of thorncliffe park apartments indicating community government partnerships

Whether you work, play or live in Toronto you need to embrace the fact that personal preparedness is an individual responsibility. Emergency responders do a great job keeping people safe, but they can’t do it alone. It may take several days for help to reach your area. We also need to check in and help our neighbours when it's safe to do so.

Take action to prepare for the types of emergencies that could affect you where you live, work, and visit. Whether you're an individual, community group, business owner or manager of a high-rise building the new portal provides tips and tools to help you become a preparedness ambassador!

ExpandIndividuals & Families

Preparedness is everybody's business.  Are you and your family prepared for an emergency? What about your neighbourhood?  Do you know your neighbours’ emergency plan or how you can help each other during an emergency?

There are steps you can take to help increase your community's preparedness and resilience.

Before an Emergency Occurs

Be prepared

Sign up for local alerts and warnings

Create and test your emergency communications plans

Assemble or update emergency supplies


Take Action

Spread the Word

When an Emergency Occurs

Listen for information and follow the instructions given to you by emergency responders or other city officials.

Check on family, friends and neighbours

ExpandCommunity Groups or Organizations

Is everyone in your group personally prepared?  Do you want information on how your group can  help build community resiliency?

Before an Emergency Occurs

Hold a meeting with your group or organization to define what function or services you might be able to provide during an emergency

Host a preparedness workshop

List your group on the City's Wellbeing Index by filling out our Community Capacity Survey

When an Emergency Occurs

Consider conducting wellness checks on your members

Open your doors to the community as a respite centre

ExpandLandlords and Property Managers

Landlords have an obligation to maintain habitable conditions in residential buildings. This includes providing essential services like electricity, hot water and heat (during the coldest months of the year), and ensuring that physical conditions do not threaten the life, health, or safety of tenants.

Preparing your building(s) and residents for a weather related or other emergency such as a prolonged power outage is critical.

Before an Emergency Occurs

Develop an Emergency Plan; communicate it to all tenants and post it throughout the building.

  • Include relocation contingencies, such as location of your nearest identified emergency meeting point, available units in other buildings within your portfolio, transportation for tenants, etc.
  • In your plan be sure to include considerations for security with contact information (site security if the building is evacuated)
  • Implement a resiliency plan to improve the facility's ability to weather and emergency (enhanced windows, drainage systems etc.)
  • Encourage all residents/tenants to have adequate insurance
  • Host a preparedness workshop

Vulnerable Populations

  • Have up-to-date contact information for tenants and their emergency contacts
  • Have a plan for maintaining necessary on-site services and determine special needs
  • Have a plan for checking in on your tenants before and after the event to see if assistance is required.

When an Emergency Occurs


  • Have your property manager or superintendent conduct an immediate assessment of your property post-event.
  • City agencies may contact you to conduct physical inspections of the property to see if there is damage to the property.  If the City contacts you by phone or email, respond quickly and appropriately
  • Activate your security plan


If your building has sustained damage and you are working on making repairs:

  • Let your tenants know, especially if you are experiencing delays
  • Keep tenants informed of repair progress and let them know of any intermediary solutions you can provide.
  • If heat is affected, please take any steps recommended by professionals to keep pipes from freezing, as this may cause additional damage to your property and further delay restoration of services.
  • Let tenants know where to pick up mail as you arrange with Canada Post


Other tips for Preparing in Advance

  • Have a Community Bulletin Board where you post regular safety updates and where update will be routinely posted in the event of an emergency.
  • Conduct annual evacuation drills. Designate a meeting point at least 50 metres from your building.
  • Consider implementing 'Floor Captains' in your building where a volunteer resident maintains a focus on group safety.
  • Encourage all residents to have a personal preparedness kit that will lessen the impacts of an emergency event.
  • Have a supply of Emergency Lighting devices such as LED flashlights to supplement the building's emergency lighting
  • Have at least one battery / crank radio available that can be used in a common area for tenants to receive necessary information.
  • Evacuation Chairs for vulnerable residents that may not be mobile enough to easily evacuate the building during an extended power disruption
  • Install a backup generator – ideally big enough to power all the building's needs but  minimally to power one elevator to allow all residents to evacuate if necessary

Other Information

Information graphic showing different types of how information can be received

Stay Informed

it is important to stay informed during an emergency.  There are numerous ways to receive emergency information.

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The City's Role During an Emergency

When a large scale emergency strikes our City, Toronto will activate its Emergency Response Plan. The plan details the methods in which the City mobilizes its resources during a crisis.  It also ensures all City organizations, emergency response services, and key agencies are fully aware of their respective roles and responsibilities.



Many people feel they want to help out when an emergency occurs.  Do you know the City's donation policy before, during and after an emergency?


Volunteering during an emergency

Are you interested in helping your community during an emergency? Getting involved with a volunteer agency before an emergency occurs will improve your ability to help during a crisis or when help is needed.


Get Emergency Ready

Know your Risks...Make a Plan...Prepare a Kit

Being prepared for an emergency can significantly reduce the hardship you may experience during a local or city-wide emergency. Find out how you can "Get Emergency Ready".