On November 20, at the semi-annual meeting of the International Emergency Management Group (IEMG), Mr. Guy Laroche, Deputy Minister of Québec's Ministry of Public Security, presented an assessment of the facts and actions undertaken following the July 6th rail tragedy in Lac-Mégantic, Québec.
Following the presentation, different topics were discussed between the Eastern Canadian provinces and the New England states on ways to strenghten their ties and harmonize best practices in managing an emergency, such as communications, mutual assistance, border accessibility and crossing, emergency-related exercises, testing and other training activities. During the tragedy in Lac-Mégantic, eight fire services from Maine came to help local firefighters.
The IEMG is a forum for participating entities to discuss common interests in regards to emergency response. A Memorandum of Understanding (The Compact) was signed by the members and provides for the possibility of mutual assistance in managing an emergency or disaster among participating jurisdictions.
The IEMG is composed of Québec and the Atlantic provinces of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador and the six New England states: Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Vermont and Connecticut.