The Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office, through its Division of Emergency Management, is responsible for providing emergency management services for all of unincorporated Whatcom County and for the cities of Lynden, Ferndale, Blaine, Sumas, Everson, Nooksack and the Port of Bellingham under an interlocal agreement and the Revised Code and Administrative Code of Washington. The City of Bellingham Fire Department, through its Office of Emergency Management, provides emergency management services within the City limits of Bellingham.
To ensure effective coordination and the sharing of assets at times of critical need, the concept of a Whatcom Unified Emergency Management was established as the modality for maximizing the capabilities and limited resources. A formal agreement to co-locate the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office Division of Emergency Management and the Bellingham Fire Department Office of Emergency Management, as well as the Port of Bellingham and other partners has created the Whatcom Unified Emergency Coordination Center (ECC). Under this agreement, most emergency coordination will occur at the ECC. Whatcom County, the City of Bellingham, the Port of Bellingham and private sector partners may undertake joint projects or services at the ECC during non-emergency periods.