Defra awards Capita Symonds emergency response contract

A team led by consultancy Capita Symonds, comprising VectorCommand, Halcrow and Scott Wilson, has been awarded a contract from the department for environment, food and rural affairs (Defra) to design, deliver and evaluate a National Emergency Response Exercise for the UK.

Sponsored by Defra and the Welsh Assembly Government, the eight-day exercise will test emergency responses to a major flood scenario across several regions of the UK by agencies such as the police, fire, coastguard, ambulance and local authorities.

It is codenamed ’Watermark’ and scheduled for March 2011.

The exercise will include the highest level of government involvement through Cabinet Office Briefing Room (COBR), as well as regional and local emergency command centres across England and Wales.