Equine Emergency and Disaster Preparedness


In July of 2016 the Alberta Equestrian Federation (AEF) commenced a development process for an Equine Emergency and Disaster Preparedness project. The objective of this project is to identify the response and recovery capacities of Alberta equine owners and custodians and industry respecting emergency and disaster preparedness.

With collaboration of governments and other resources, this industry led project is to develop a strategy that will educate and assist horse owners and custodians to be prepared for emergencies and disasters. This project will consist and include but not be limited disease outbreak, fires, floods, hazardous material spills, train derailments, extreme weather (tornado, ice storm, blizzard), building maintenance or lack of structural integrity, etc.

Project activities include:

  1. Post disaster analysis survey – this comprehensive survey is for those who were directly affected by the 2016 Fort McMurray wildfires, including:
    • People who evacuated horses from their property, facility or stable;
    • People who retained possession of horses at the original premises and / or provided shelter for horses in need;
    • People who assisted others with the relocation and / or rescue of horses.
  1. Industry scan – survey to horse owners and custodians regarding current understanding and strategy of emergency / disaster preparedness.
  2. Industry meeting(s)
    • Identify scope and regional differences;
    • Outline an overall industry strategy considering information from surveys for equine emergency preparedness.
  3. Industry awareness campaign – social media, organizations / associations / community meetings and conferences to discuss emergency preparedness, introduction concepts and conversations on equine emergency preparedness.
  4. Develop an industry strategy – an outline to foster an emergency preparedness strategy for Alberta equine.
  5. High-level workshop – to include representatives from municipal and provincial emergency response, enforcement agencies, equine industry specialists and organization representatives to identify the contents and context of a province wide grassroots educational project.
  6. Program delivery to the grass roots and industry – from information gathered through the above activities.

In a commitment to improve Canada’s approach to emergency management in agriculture, federal, provincial and territorial (FPT) governments have developed an Emergency Management Framework for Agriculture in Canada (the Framework). The Framework sets out to improve Canada’s ability to address risks and emergencies along the continuum from prevention to recovery, therefore strengthening the resilience, sustainability and competitiveness of the agriculture sector.

Click here to view the framework.