Coles County Emergency Management Agency

The Coles County EMA office and Emergency Operations Center (EOC) are located in the basement of the Charleston City Building located at 520 Jackson Avenue, Charleston, Illinois. Secured within the City building are facilities to coordinate a response to any emergency confronting Coles County. These emergencies include, but are not limited to fire, flood, tornado, severe thunderstorm, snowstorm, hazardous material spills, civil disturbance, and terrorism.

The current EMA Director is Jim Hilgenberg. The EMA Director is a part-time position in Coles County. The Administration Office for the Coles County Emergency Management Agency is available by appointment.

During emergency situations, the EMA can be contacted by dialing 911.
The EMA communications room contains radios capable of communication on police, fire, ambulance, municipal, county, regional, state and amateur (Ham) radio frequencies. Coles County EMA is establishing a weather station that measures rainfall, temperature, humidity, wind speed and direction, and has a computer-generated predictive capability. The EMA is also connected with satellite images and forecasts from the National Weather Service. The EMA maintains separate direct phone lines to the phone company which can be activated during emergency situations.

The City’s Meeting Room adjacent to the EOC will easily accommodate agency representatives from local emergency response entities. In the event of an emergency, command level leaders from the EMA, fire department, police, highway department, township, municipalities, human services, Red Cross, Salvation Army, and other entities would work together to implement our emergency response plan. By physically placing decision-makers together in an Incident Command setting emergency response, management, and evacuations are faster, more efficient, better organized, and safer.

Coles County is located in east-central Illinois and covers 510 square miles. For more information about our county, please check out the Coles County Homepage.

Mission Statement
Coles County E.M.A. Mission Statement
The State of Illinois has required all counties to have an EMA agency. Your Emergency Management Agency is charged with planning for, coordinating, responding to and recovering from all disasters, natural or man-made. It is extremely important for all local police, fire, ambulance and response agencies to provide the county with an efficient and coordinated response to major emergencies or disasters. From tornadoes or severe storms, plane crashes or explosions, fire, floods - there are a variety of potential emergencies that need to be planned for.

The county EMA also works with individual communities, utilities and schools to prepare them for emergencies. This is an agency that we hope we will never have to use, but of critical importance to save lives and property should the need arise.

The mission of the Coles County Emergency Management Agency as established by ordinance of the Coles County Board is to prevent, minimize, repair and alleviate injury or damage resulting from natural or man-made disasters, major emergencies, enemy attack, sabotage or other hostile action in accordance with the Illinois Emergency Management Act. The mission of the EMA is deliberately broad. EMA's primary responsibilities are accomplished through coordination and support of disaster preparedness, planning, response and recovery efforts of Coles County and its political subdivisions in conjunction with the State of Illinois, private organizations, businesses, and the public.

Coles County EMA accomplishes its mission through different methods or efforts including developing emergency plans; conducting disaster exercises; developing emergency communications and warning systems; coordinating operations of specialized emergency response units; providing public awareness and education; and, guidance to local units of government.
EMA is often called upon to respond to emergency situations as a coordinating agency or a support agency. EMA maintains a staff of volunteers capable of assisting in a variety of areas.

We are a NIMS Compliant agency.
Education Outreach
Education Outreach
EMA Education Outreach

We provide speakers to community organizations. EMA speakers provide an overview of EMA responsibilities, as well as instruction on severe weather or disaster preparation. If your group or club would like to learn more about the EMA, please contact us (217-348-0581) to schedule a speaker.
Want To Be A Volunteer
Want To Be A Volunteer

Coles County EMA is always accepting applications for volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering your services, please stop by the office for a request:
Coles County EMA
Charleston City Building
520 Jackson Avenue
Charleston, IL  61920