Wisconsin Emergency Management (WEM) is the lead state agency charged with coordinating the state's planning, preparedness, mitigation, response and recovery efforts for natural and man-caused disasters. WEM operates a 24-hour emergency hotline to answer calls reporting hazardous materials spills, requests for state assistance in search and rescue missions, severe weather events, public health problems, and other threats to public safety.

WEM programs include hazard mitigation, warning & communications, emergency planning, emergency police services, emergency fire services, disaster response & recovery, hazardous materials & Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act (EPCRA), radiological emergency preparedness, and exercise & training, and personal preparedness. WEM also has six regional offices that work closely with tribal and local emergency management programs. Following a natural or man-made disaster, local officials work through their county emergency management director to contact WEM's 24-hour duty officer system. 

WEM contacts appropriate state and federal agencies, and coordinates any requested state assistance, such as National Guard or State Patrol resources. In addition, WEM regional directors, emergency police services and emergency fire services coordinators may respond to the scene to serve as field liaisons for the State Emergency Operations Center in Madison and to help coordinate response efforts.