Emergency Management Program




The Township of Muskoka Lakes has had an effective Emergency Management Program in place since 2004 and is currently in compliance with Emergency Management Ontario’s Essential Level program. Our Township is not immune to disasters. The isolated and topographical nature of our area, the very reason that most people are drawn to Muskoka Lakes, can also make it very challenging during an emergency. Our community risk profile was designed around some historical disasters that included:

damaged power lines

1. Hekkla Wildland Fire – 1989

2. Bala Train Derailment – 1996 & 1998

3. Torrance Train Derailment – 1996

4. Bala Park Island Train Derailment – 2003

5. Tanker truck fire in Foot’s Bay – 1997

6. Power Outages due to severe weather – Annually



Public Awareness is a key element of our Emergency Management Program and as such it is imperative that residents are aware of the following:

Notification of an emergency does not always start at the top. In order for the Community Control Group to realize that there is an emergency we must be notified. This may include residents contacting the Township office to provide or seek information. If deemed an immediate emergency a resident may activate emergency resources through use of the 911 reporting protocol. Two telephone numbers that residents should have readily available are:

Information & Reporting non-immediate emergencies

Township of Muskoka Lakes Municipal Office - (705) 765-3156

911– Reporting of Emergencies

Note: Residents that use specialized medical equipment (i.e. O2 systems) and are without power should consider this an emergency and call 911.

Emergency Reception & Evacuation Centres

All District of Muskoka municipalities should have a standardized means by which to identify their reception centres and the services each provides. All sites have been broken down into three categories:

  • Category “A” – Must have generator capability for all service, kitchen with service set, showers and a sleeping area,
  • Category “B” – Must have generator capability for lights and heat with washrooms,
  • Category “C” – Must be able to support short term registration of evacuee’s only

The Township of Muskoka Lakes has identified five (5) reception centres, they are as follows:

  • Port Carling Community Centre – Category “A” (Primary)
  • Milford Bay Community Centre – Category “A” (Secondary)
  • Torrance Community Centre – Category “B”
  • Raymond Community Centre – Category “B”
  • Cardwell Community Centre – Category “B”

These facilities have been identified in the emergency plan as being critical infrastructure and as such have back-up generators installed.

Note: Residents are encouraged to contact the Township Emergency Information line at
(705) 765-3156 for information regarding the activation of the reception center or any of the evacuation centres.

Information on Specific Hazards that may affect our Township

Information pamphlets dealing with emergencies that may affect our Township are available at the Township office at the receptionist’s desk. If there is specific information that you require, please ask the receptionist and she will direct you to the Muskoka Lakes Emergency Management Coordinator.

Emergency Management information is also available at all special events held in Muskoka Lakes where the Fire Department has established a fire prevention information table.

Residents Protecting & Preparing for themselves

A disaster, be it natural or human-caused, could happen anytime and anywhere. If a natural disaster does strike, being prepared well in advance can make the difference between inconvenience and immense losses. A general rule of thumb used by Emergency Management Ontario is that under NORMAL circumstances an individual should be prepared to survive for the first 72 hours (3 days) of any emergency. To help you prepare the following survival kit checklist has been provided.

Prepare Now, Learn How

For further information and self-help advice, please feel free to access one of the following links:

Be Prepared at home for 72 hours

Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada

Emergency Management Ontario

Weather Conditions

Electrical Safety Authority

If you have any questions in regard to Emergency Management, please contact Richard Hayes, Fire Chief for the Township of Muskoka Lakes - 705 765-3156.

w3cP.O. Box 129, 1 Bailey St., Port Carling, Ontario, P0B 1J0  Phone:(705)765-3156  Fax:(705)765-6755
Municipal Office hours: Monday to Friday 8:15 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. (excluding holidays)