What is the CAMEO software suite?
CAMEO Quick Links
The CAMEO software suite is a system of software
applications used widely to plan for and respond to chemical
emergencies. It is one of the tools developed by EPA’s
Office of Emergency Management (OEM) and the National
Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Office of Response
and Restoration (NOAA), to assist front-line chemical
emergency planners and responders. They can use CAMEO to
access, store, and evaluate information critical for
developing emergency plans. In addition, CAMEO supports
regulatory compliance by helping users meet the chemical
inventory reporting requirements of the Emergency
Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA, also
known as SARA Title III).
The CAMEO system integrates a chemical database and a method to manage the data, an air dispersion model, and a mapping capability. All modules work interactively to share and display critical information in a timely fashion. The CAMEO system is available in Macintosh and Windows formats.
- Why was CAMEO Created?
- Who Uses CAMEO?
- What is in CAMEO?
- CAMEOfm - Database and Information Management Tool
- CAMEO Chemicals - Chemical Response Data Sheets and Reactivity Prediction Tool
- MARPLOT - Mapping Applications for Response, Planning, and Local Operational Tasks
- ALOHA - Areal Locations of Hazardous Atmospheres
- Other Planning/Response Tools
The CAMEO software suite initially was developed because NOAA recognized the need to assist first responders with easily accessible and accurate response information. Since 1988, EPA and NOAA have collaborated to augment CAMEO to assist both emergency responders and planners. CAMEO has been enhanced to provide emergency planners with a tool to enter local information and develop incident scenarios to better prepare for chemical emergencies. The Bureau of Census and the U.S. Coast Guard have worked with EPA and NOAA to continue to enhance the system.
Rapid action by firefighter, police, and other emergency response personnel often is severely hampered by lack of accurate information on the substance spilled and safe response actions. Emergency planners lack a tool to store and easily use information that is essential for emergency planning.
- State Emergency Response Commissions (SERCs) and Tribal Emergency Response Commissions (TERCs)
- Local Emergency Planning Committees (LEPCs)
- Environmental Organizations
- Police Departments
CAMEO is actually a suite of four separate, integrated software applications:
CAMEOfm is a database application that includes eight modules (such as Facilities and Contacts) to assist with data management requirements under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA). Each year, facilities covered by EPCRA must submit an emergency and hazardous chemical inventory form to their LEPC, SERC, and local fire department. Most facilities submit a Tier II form, which contains basic facility identification information, employee contact information, and information such as storage amounts, storage conditions, and locations for chemicals stored or used at the facility. You can use CAMEOfm to store this information, by entering it manually or by importing a Tier2 Submit file (if the facilities and/or planners in your state use that program). CAMEOfm can also be used to navigate between ALOHA, MARPLOT, and the downloadable version of CAMEO Chemicals.online , as a mobile site , and as a downloadable version .
MARPLOT is the mapping application. It allows users to "see" their data (e.g., roads, facilities, schools, response assets), display this information on computer maps, and print the information on area maps. The areas contaminated by potential or actual chemical release scenarios also can be overlaid on the maps to determine potential impacts. The maps are created from the U.S. Bureau of Census TIGER/Line files and can be manipulated quickly to show possible hazard areas.
ALOHA is an atmospheric dispersion model used for
evaluating releases of hazardous chemical vapors. ALOHA
allows the user to estimate the downwind dispersion of a
chemical cloud based on the toxicological/physical
characteristics of the released chemical, atmospheric
conditions, and specific circumstances of the release.
ALOHA can estimate threat zones associated with
several types of hazardous chemical releases, including
toxic gas clouds, fires, and explosions. Threat zones can be
plotted on maps with MARPLOT to display the location of
other facilities storing hazardous materials and vulnerable
locations, such as hospitals and schools. Specific
information about these locations can be extracted from
modules to help make decisions about the degree of hazard
For more information on emergency preparedness, planning, and prevention programs, contact the EPA Superfund, TRI, EPCRA, RMP & Oil Information Center, a toll-free service that can answer technical policy questions on federal EPA regulations. The Call Center can be reached during regular business hours at:
- Toll-Free: (800) 424-9346
- Local: (703) 412-9810
- TDD: (800) 553-7672
- TDD Local: (703) 412-3323
For answers to functional software questions or solutions to installation problems, contact the RMP Reporting Center: (703) 227-7650 (8am-4:30pm M-F) or via e-mail at: RMPRC@epacdx.net