The response phase includes the mobilization of the necessary emergency services and first responders in the disaster area.  This is likely to include a first wave of core emergency services, such as firefighters, police and ambulance crews.  Response is defined as the actions taken to save lives and prevent further damage in a disaster or emergency situation. Response is putting preparedness plans into action. Response activities may include damage assessment, search and rescue, fire fighting, and sheltering victims.

Organizational response to any significant disaster – natural or terrorist-borne – is based on existing emergency management organizational systems and processes: the Federal Response Plan (FRP) and the Incident Command System (ICS). These systems are solidified through the principles of Unified Command (UC) and Mutual Aid (MA).

The Public Safety Department at Hempfield Township works in all areas of public safety, including coordinating with the fire departments, the state police, as well as areas of traffic safety, fire codes, and safety issues associated with workers’ compensation.

Police protection is provided by the Pennsylvania State Police.

Emergency Medical Services are protivided by Rescue 14 EMS, Inc., Jeannette EMS, and Mutual Aid Ambulance Service.

There are twelve (12) fire departments in Hempfield Township which are operated strictly by volunteers. These fire departments are responsible for performing a number of challenging duties such as controlling fires, saving lives, providing emergency services to victims, saving property and protecting the environment.  The departments are: Adamsburg VFD, Bovard VFD, Carbon VFD, Fort Allen VFD, Grapeville VFD, Hannastown VFD, Hempfield #2 VFD, High Park VFD, Luxor VFD, Midway/St. Clair VFD, North Hempfield VFD, and West Point VFD.