Emergency management services are vital across the country, and in recent years, have been essential in the Golden State. Over the past few decades, California's need for emergency services has grown considerably, largely due to an increase in the frequency and destructive power of wildfires.
According to a report by the Legislative Analyst’s Office (pictured), an exponential number of the state’s most destructive fires have occurred in the past 20 years.
In response to the increase in natural disasters across the state, new positions in emergency management and disaster recovery services are opening up. Below, we discuss the most common natural disasters in the state and three prominent employers battling them, all of whom are hiring now.
Emergency Management and Disaster Recovery
Emergency management and disaster recovery services are core to various industries. As a certified emergency manager, you may have experience in healthcare, agriculture, construction, engineering, federal response, or various other public or private sectors. Regardless of the industry, it is necessary to have disaster recovery systems in place in case of a major event.
WSP USA Inspection Services
WSP USA Inspection Services is a firm that has an extensive background in disaster recovery services. Operating throughout the United States, WSP teams have aided in the prevention and clean-up of hurricanes, storms, floods, fires, global pandemics, and other natural disasters.
WSP USA has an impressive project portfolio that touches almost every state in the USA and abroad. Most notably, their subsidiary Parsons Brinckerhoff was the only Housing Inspection Services contractor selected by FEMA to aid in housing inspection services after the 9/11 World Trade Center disaster.
Certis Solutions has been a pivotal partner in helping WSP efficiently ramp up staff for emergency management projects across the US. Most recently, Certis worked closely with WSP to support hiring needs for field staff for fire debris and tree removal assessment services in Northern California, in response to 2020 and 2021 wildfire seasons.
WSP USA is a large, international employer operating in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, India, and more. Globally, WSP employs approximately 47,000 people.
Awards & Recognition
The company has been recognized repeatedly and is known as a leader in disaster recovery services. In January 2021, WSP was awarded the “Most Sustainable Company in the Engineering Industry” for the second year in a row at the Sustainability Awards. Shortly thereafter, The American Council of Engineering Companies recognized nine of WSP USA’s projects at the Engineering Excellence Awards. This included the Grand Award for their Lower Crystal Springs Dam Bridge replacement. For a comprehensive list of WSP’s Awards & Recognition, visit their About Us page.
Fire Clean-Up Services
Fire clean-up and rescue services is a critical emergency management service area in California. There is a growing demand for emergency management jobs in fire clean-up in the wake of spreading wildfires across the state. Professionals in this area are responsible for removing fire-damaged vegetation, hazardous materials, water damage, soot, and other debris. In addition to debris removal, soil and groundwater testing, air monitoring, biological monitoring, soil stabilization, and erosion prevention services are also a necessity.
Odin Construction is one of many firms in California that offers debris removal as part of fire clean-up services. The firm conducts this service immediately after an event occurs to clear emergency access routes. Depending on the damage caused to ecosystems and habitats, the firm also dispatches cleaning teams to the affected areas as part of the recovery process. Beyond fire clean-up, Odin also focuses on environmental remediation, geotechnical construction, levee and dam rehabilitation, mechanical dredging, and habitat and wetland construction.
Odin has completed over 400 projects in the last 20 years. Recent fire-related projects include the 2019 Camp Fire Cleanup in Paradise, Concwo, and Magalia, as well as the 2020 Fires Inland Branch Cleanup throughout Northern California following the LNU Lightning Complex Fire.
Odin is a mid-sized firm that is actively growing, with approximately 51-200 employees, according to LinkedIn.
Awards & Recognition
Odin is a leader in emergency management services and has received numerous awards since their inception. Recent awards include the 2020 Project of the Year for the Sacramento River East Levee Project, the 2020 Outstanding Environmental Engineering Project of the Year for the Bryte Landfill Project, and the 2019 Project of the Year for the aforementioned Camp Fire Debris Removal and Services Project.
Emergency management and disaster recovery also require environmental remediation services to revive ecosystems and communities that have been damaged or otherwise affected by natural disasters. Many habitat and community restoration projects occur across California annually to improve the state's wetlands, marshes, coastal areas, woodlands, and community living spaces.
Forgen is a prominent provider of environmental remediation services across the United States. Forgen was founded in 2008 and has quickly grown into one of the largest environmental, geotechnical, flood control, and ecosystem restoration contractors. The company’s tagline is ‘For Generations’ and reflects their commitment to leaving the planet better than they found it.
As part of its environmental remediation portfolio, the firm has worked on the Kalamazoo River Superfund Site Sediment Removal project and the Sears Point Wetland and Watershed Restoration project. Other relevant projects include the Arapahoe Station Coal Combustion Residual Pond Closure and the Gilt Edge Mine Access Road and Cell Construction.
Forgen is a growing company with 200–500 employees, making them one of the largest environmental contractors in the United States.
Getting Your Career Started in Emergency Management Services
As an emergency management professional, you'll be aware of the four phases of emergency management and response: mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery. Each community in California is in one of these phases at all times. For this reason, there will always be a growing need for project managers, safety professionals, and environmental task force leaders across the state.
If you are looking to get your career in any area of emergency management started, consider speaking with the team at Certis Solutions. As a technical staffing agency, we have access to various roles before a firm makes them available to the public. Our experienced team will work alongside you to find a project that matches your professional and personal goals.
Contact us today for more information on how our team can help you kickstart your career in emergency management and disaster recovery.