Knoxville-Knox Co. Emergency Management Agency

KEMA Director

Alan Lawson
(865) 215-1166

605 Bernard Avenue
Knoxville, TN 37921

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Knoxville-Knox County Emergency Management Agency
605 Bernard Avenue
Knoxville, TN 37921
Fax: 865-215-1177 

Mission Statement

Emergency Management provides the development of plans, training, exercises and facilities for the public and emergency services so as to ensure the most efficient use of manpower and equipment, minimizing the loss of life and property when disasters or other emergencies occur. 

What is KEMA?

The Knoxville-Knox County Emergency Management Agency is a joint City-County governmental office under the Chief elected officials (Mayor and County Mayor) of the City of Knoxville and Knox County. 

The Knoxville-Knox County Emergency Management Agency (KEMA) is the central point of contact for local government for all major emergencies and disasters. KEMA works in partnership with local state and federal agencies as well as industry and volunteer organizations.

KEMA's Activities Include

Provide Emergency Planning - KEMA researches, revises, prints and distributes the Knoxville-Knox County Basic Emergency Plan. Assist with the development and implement a continuity of operations plan for City and County government. These plans will enable our local government to operate sufficiently during inclement weather or other disaster situations. 

Provide Training to Emergency Responders and Public Organizations  - KEMA will host/present training classes and/or presentations to response agencies, doctors, nurses and public organizations on topics such as Terrorism, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Assisting Children in Disasters, Structural Collapse, Incident Command, Weather Spotter and CERT. 

Provide Citizen Preparedness Information  - KEMA is the administrator for the Knoxville Local Emergency Planning Committee and hosts the website The site includes pages for MMRS, CERT, DART and a Get Ready Knoxville Preparedness program page. The program provides Free READY KIT bags to encourage citizens to put together an emergency kit at Over 10,000 Ready Kit bags have been distributed to individuals, churches, various community organizations, and neighborhood watch groups. 

Participate in Emergency Exercises  - KEMA participate in numerous emergency exercises every year. Each exercise is evaluated to determine its effectiveness and suggestions for improvement. 

Provide and Maintain EOC Facilities - The 9-1-1/KEMA facility houses the EOC - Emergency Operations Center. This is the central meeting point for the City and County Mayors, Police, Fire, Emergency Medical Services, American Red Cross and others to coordinate response and recovery efforts following a disaster. KEMA will continue to maintain and improve on this facility by increasing the number of computers, and improving communications networks and as funding will allow. 

Mobile Command Post - Purchased through Homeland Security this regional command, control and communications vehicle is available to use at emergency scenes and it is also used as a staging area for responders in the event of a problem or emergency during special events. 

Grant Administration - KEMA administers several State and Federal Grants which provide emergency planning, training and equipment to emergency responders, hospitals and volunteers. 

Duty Officer - A duty officer is on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Duty officers are on call to respond to the scene of emergencies such as severe weather, train derailments, hazardous materials incidents, plane crashes, mass casualty incidents and the like. The duty officer is contacted through Knox County 9-1-1 or the State Emergency Operations Center.