Emergency Management


Victoria has a one in three (32%) probability of a damaging earthquake in the next 50 years, and in addition to risk of earthquakes, is also prone to hazards including tsunamis, weather events and pandemics.

Prepare Victoria!

The Victoria Emergency Management Agency (VEMA) is the City of Victoria's resource for helping our community prepare for an emergency. Responsible for coordinating an emergency response in the event of a disaster, VEMA also educates and empowers Victoria citizens on how to be "emergency prepared." This is accomplished through emergency preparedness training events, exercises, and public education.

Volunteer with VEMA

Are you community-minded? Want to help your community in an emergency response? Explore volunteer opportunities with VEMA's seven teams!

FREE Workshops - Family Emergency Preparedness

Make emergency preparedness part of your family's New Year's resolution. Learn how you and your family can be prepared for an earthquake, tsunami, or power outage by attending a FREE Emergency Preparedness Workshop in 2015!

ShakeOut Victoria!

The community is invited to sign up online to participate in the annual Great British Columbia ShakeOut -- the largest earthquake drill in Canadian history on Thursday, October 15, 2015 at 10:15am. More than 740,000 British Columbians signed up to participate in the drill last year. Learn more.

Launched in September 2013, Earthquake 1-2-3 was a monthly, nine-part series in the Times Colonist featuring helpful information to assist families to become better prepared before, during, and after a damaging earthquake. The series focused on earthquake awareness, preparedness and planning and was sponsored by the City of Victoria, Thrifty Foods, Capital Iron and Megson FitzPatrick Insurance Services.  To kick off National Emergency Preparedness Week (May 4 - 10, 2014), Earthquake 1-2-3 was featured as a special four-page wrap of the Times Colonist. View the series here.

National Emergency Preparedness Week

National Emergency Preparedness Week is designed to raise awareness of the importance of having an emergency kit and making an emergency plan. This annual event takes place across Canada each year during the first full week of May. Learn more on what your family can do to prepare for a damaging earthquake in Greater Victoria.

What to do During an Earthquake 

Did you know that Drop, Cover and Hold On is the safest action you and your family can take during an earthquake to protect yourself from injury or death? Learn more.

How to Prepare an Emergency Kit 

Check out our award-winning Recipe for Disaster series to learn what you need to include in your emergency kit to help protect your family, pets, or business.

How to be Prepared at Home

Learn what you can do to be prepared for an earthquake at home.

How to be Prepared at Work

Victoria gets its share of weather events such as windstorms and snow, which can disrupt power or make transportation difficult. Plumbing failures and fire can also interrupt a business. We're also due for a major earthquake. Planning ahead can help businesses recover faster from a disaster, reducing the likelihood of a large financial loss. Check out the Recipe for Disaster for businesses.


If an earthquake lasts for more than 60 seconds or is so strong that it is difficult to stand, people in low-lying coastal areas are advised to move to higher ground. Learn more about the difference between a Tsunami Warning, a Tsunami Advisory, and a Tsunami Watch -- and what to do.

Follow VEMA on Facebook

For helpful tips and information, "Like" us on Facebook. 

Emergency Management BC

For the latest information on an earthquake or tsunami in BC, visit Emergency Management BC. You can also follow them on Twitter at @EmergencyInfoBC for emergency alerts and notices, or at @EmergencyPrepBC for helpful emergency preparedness tips. 

Be Prepared!

There are many things that can be done in a home, business or organization to prepare for an emergency, minimizing the risks of injury and damage. Individuals should prepare to be self-sufficient for a minimum of three days without outside assistance. Check out these helpful links below to Prepare Victoria!

The City, like all municipal governments in British Columbia, is required by the Emergency Program Act and Regulations to have an emergency management organization, an emergency plan, and train staff and exercise that plan regularly.

2014 Tour Disaster 

Congratulations to the 23 cyclists who participated in the 2014 Tour Disaster on July 26! Part bike rally, part emergency exercise, the Tour Disaster demonstrates the important role cyclists can play in an emergency response. Kudos to the top three finishers:

1st place: JD Gibbard
2nd place: Gabe Leveque
3rd place: Simon Wigzall

Special thanks to our VEMA volunteers who helped organize and run the event.

Thank you to VeloFix Victoria for assisting with bicycle safety checks and to St. John Ambulance volunteers for providing mobile first aid during the event. Tour Disaster is a partnership between the City of Victoria and the Greater Victoria Cycling Coalition. Learn more about Tour Disaster.