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WA Emergency & Risk Management

The Office of Emergency Management (OEM) and Office of Bushfire Risk Management (OBRM) work at a State level to oversee Western Australia’s emergency management arrangements and bushfire risk management framework respectively.

Office of Emergency Management (OEM)

The OEM (formerly the SEMC Secretariat) was established on 1 December 2016.

The OEM, a sub-department of DFES, was established as a result of the recommendations of the Special Inquiry into the January 2016 Waroona Fire by Euan Ferguson AFSM. The OEM retains the same role as the SEMC Secretariat - as well as the added Assurance function - and reports directly to the Minister for Emergency Services.

The OEM’s key role is in providing support to the State Emergency Management Committee (SEMC) in delivering on its strategic goals. The SEMC provides an independent and objective oversight of emergency management in Western Australia. The SEMC’s purpose is to strategise, organise and oversee the coordination and continuous improvement of emergency management in the State.

For further information, please visit the OEM website.

Office of Bushfire Risk Management (OBRM)

OBRM was created in May 2012 as an independent office within DFES to oversee changes to Western Australia’s prescribed burning program across all land tenures.

OBRM aims to ensure that bushfire related risk across the State is managed in accordance with AS/NZS ISO 31000:2009 Risk Management Principles and Guidelines.

OBRM’s main functions are:

  • To regulate prescribed burning
  • To liaise with stakeholders and provide advice in relation to policy, legislative frameworks, resourcing, responsibilities, best practice and standards
  • To facilitate communication and consultation between relevant stakeholders to assist the State in the management of bushfire related risk
  • To encourage continuous improvement through the identification of lessons learned
  • To report on the state of bushfire related risk across Western Australia.

Additional information can be found on the Office of Bushfire Risk Management homepage.


Please note: From 1 December 2016, the Western Australia Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (WANDRRA) is administered by the Office of Emergency Management and information is available on the WANDRRA page on the OEM website

Information regarding the Emergency Management Funding Program is now available on the OEM website. This includes information about the Natural Disaster Resilience Program (NDRP) and All West Australians Reducing Emergencies (AWARE).​​


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