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Emergency and Disaster Preparedness

Who to call

AIC-CERT (American Institute for Conservation – Collections Emergency Response Team) 24-hour assistance with trained volunteers: (202) 661-8068

Northeast Document Conservation Center: 24-hour assistance from NEDCC staff: (978) 470-1010

Gerald R. Ford Conservation Center, Omaha, Nebraska:  Phone:  (402) 595-1180  /   Email:


Disaster Resistant Communities Group.  Just In Time Disaster Training - Preparing a Disaster Plan - Museum Facilities

FEMA Planning Guides: a web page guides you to act before a disaster happens, not after one happens.    

When Disaster Strikes, Who are you going to Call?  Good article, click here. 

The above article highlights the American Institute for Conservation Collections Emergency Response Team, also known as AIC-CERT.

Foundation of the American Institute for Conservation (FAIC) has created the following advice for those facing immediate disaster, along with website resources.

For safety reasons, stay put until local and state authorities say it is safe to venture out.

  • Use this time to get organized so when you re-enter your facility, you can act more effectively.

  • Call staff and volunteers to determine whether they (1) are safe, (2) have been affected and might need assistance, and (3) will be able to participate in salvage operations once the all-clear has been given.

  • Review your disaster plan for collections. Begin discussions with institutional response team members.

  • Don't have a disaster plan? Determine who should be involved in response. Begin discussion on possible impacts on facility and collections, and who you would contact for assistance.

  • Even though you may not know the extent of damage yet, contact the disaster recovery company (or companies) in your disaster plan to give them a heads-up that you might be calling them if damage exceeds your ability to respond quickly and effectively.

  • Notify your insurance contact.

  • Read the Guide to Navigating FEMA and Small Business Administration Disaster Aid for Cultural Institutions to familiarize yourself with the disaster aid process. If the President declares a major disaster, you'll be better prepared to recover.  (Note: this link is broken)

  • If you don't already have one, designate a media liaison to handle all media inquiries.

Contact:  Eryl Wentworth, Executive Director, Foundation of the American Institute for Conservation:

MPMA will provide assistance when ever needed, even if it is not immediate, to go to your site.   Please contact MPMA at or 440-812-7221 if you or your museum need assistance.

Library of Congress:
What to Do when Collections Get Wet click here

Additional Federal resources   click here

Disaster Recovery Carts:   Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History stores these throughout its collection areas.  Staff inventories and updates once a year. 
Click here for list of cart supplies

Northeast Document Center:  NEDCC offers a 24-hour cost-free disaster hotline at (978) 470-1010.  Staff can consult on next steps for paper-based collections. Staff is also available via email. Frances Harrell and Jessica Bitely can be reached at and

Additional disaster assistance info can be found here:

Free leaflets on disaster recovery can be found here:

International Foundation for Cultural Property Protection (IFCPP)

Excellent resource for Security information and training, and Emergency Planning and Response.

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