The EU Civil Protection Mechanism was established in 2001 to foster cooperation among national civil protection authorities across Europe. The Mechanism currently includes all 28 EU Member States in addition to Iceland, Montenegro, Norway, Serbia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Turkey. The Mechanism was set up to enable coordinated assistance from the participating states to victims of natural and man-made disasters in Europe and elsewhere.
Disasters resulting from natural phenomena, as well as man-made disasters, can have serious effects on communities and the areas they live in. It is therefore essential to ensure that civil protection systems are at all times ready to respond to crises in the most efficient manner, saving as many lives as possible and limiting damage to the environment and property. The EU Civil Protection Mechanism provides participating countries with the opportunity to train their civil protection teams. By exchanging best practices, teams increase their ability and effectiveness in responding to disasters.
Civil protection exercises are fundamental to prepare civil protection teams to react fast and in a coordinated manner when disasters occur. Exercises at European level, involving a number of countries at a time, contribute to enhancing collaboration in disaster preparedness across borders.
Modules field and table-top exercises are organised under the supervision of the European Commission. They are conducted to improve preparedness and enhance collaboration among European civil protection authorities and teams.
Modules field exercises aim to provide an opportunity for testing specific response capacities, as well as the self-sufficiency, interoperability, coordination and procedures of response teams and equipment. Table-top exercises, in turn, focus on in-depth training of key personnel.