Emergency Management


3D illustration of the novel coronavirus

Have questions or concerns about the coronavirus (COVID-19)? The CDC has a website with the latest information, https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html, which is also available translated in Spanish and Chinese.

Locally, Saint Paul-Ramsey County Public Health is monitoring the situations.  Saint Paul continues to work with our health partners and will follow the guidance of the medical experts.  Their website has been updated with information at https://www.ramseycounty.us/residents/health-medical/current-health-issues/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19

Health officials recommend taking the same precautions for coronavirus (COVID-19) as you would for other respiratory illnesses such as the common cold and influenza:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. 
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipes.
  • Stay home when you are sick. 

How it spreads

How did it start?

Do I need to wear a facemask?

  • The CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.
  • Face masks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others.

If you are concerned or feel sick and either recently were in an area with COVID-19 cases, or think you may have been exposed to COVID-19, contact your primary health care provider to discuss further.  Your doctor can review your risk factors, symptoms, concerns, and answer questions. 

Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has a website with information too, at https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/index.html. The Minnesota Department of Health has a hotline for questions the general public has about COVID-19: 651-201-3920.  The MDH Situation Update can be found HERE

The World Health Organization has a website with updates, educational material, and other information at https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019

Questions about canceling large events in Saint Paul

The City is coordinating closely with our public health partners at Ramsey County & the Minnesota Department of Health and following their recommendations.

At this time, our public health partners are recommending these Strategies to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19.

In addition to washing your hands, covering your cough and staying home when you are sick, the Minnesota Department of Health has up to date information on what residents of the city can do to prepare and prevent COVID-19 spread at: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/prevention.html.

We will continue to closely monitor the spread of COVID-19 along with our public health partners and adapt to their recommendations.

Questions about your tap water and the coronavirus?

Saint Paul Regional Water Services’ drinking water treatment process effectively safeguards from viruses such as the flu virus and the coronavirus.  Learn more HERE from Regional Water.

Other Links and Resources:


  • CORONAVIRUS: AN ALMANAC SPECIAL Trusted medical experts share practical steps you can take to prepare for the coronavirus. 

  • Twin Cities Public Television has developed a "Toolkit" web page with downloadable print, video and social media banners in English, Spanish, Hmong and Somali, found HERE

World Health Organization (WHO)

  • Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) advice for the public: Myth-busters



The mission of Emergency Management is to build, sustain and improve our community’s capability to mitigate against, prepare for, respond to and recover from threatened or actual disasters, whether natural or man-made and acts of terrorism.  We accomplish this by working with our partner agencies and organizations.  This mission ensures that Saint Paul remains the "Most Livable City in America."

The City’s emergency readiness planning efforts focus on all hazards: weather-related disasters, terrorism, and disease outbreaks. Emergency preparedness requires strong partnerships with other local, state and federal agencies. While these partnerships are essential to ensuring that we have the resources we need to handle such an emergency, it is important to realize that all of us play a part in being prepared and vigilant.  Prepare yourself and family for when disaster strikes.  Have emergency kits for both your home and vehicle, emergency contact information, emergency plans such as fire escape routes or what to do for a tornado, know at least 2 ways out of your neighborhood or work location, and save important documents in a portable media device.  More information can be found at www.Ready.gov

Follow us on Twitter!FB logo Follow us on Twitter and Facebook! @ReadyStPaul



Find the latest from the National Weather Service here, with its info-graphic - Twin Cities Weather Story

Ready.gov logo

Make sure you are ready as you travel over the river and through the woods, to Grandmother's house, or anyone else's house  https://www.ready.gov/car

Extreme Heat can be not just dangerous, but deadly!  Learn more here

Ready.gov Spanish
Ready.gov has a multilingual webpage Resources for Other Languages. Each page contains flyers, brochures, tri-folds, press releases and public service announcements tailored to provide disaster preparedness, response, recovery and mitigation information.
NWS Logo

For forecast and weather information, visit the National Weather Service Twin Cities website

Twin Cities Weather Story and outlook -- a great graphical guide to the weather: https://www.weather.gov/mpx/weatherstory

Enhanced Weather Outlook graphical tool HERE to help you see what weather hazards may be present or forecasted

PCA logo

Air Quality Index and information can be found here.

Be Air Aware and understand how air quality can affect your health!


Climate of Minnesota can be found here and you can look at the current conditions HERE


Weather safety tips in other languages here


As leaders in multi-language health, safety and emergency readiness communications, ECHO has worked with bilingual community leaders and health and safety experts to create preparedness information, messaging and high quality videos in multiple languages. 

Videos on various preparedness topics can be found HERE.  Videos are available on many topics in English, Spanish, Hmong, Somali, Vietnamese, Lao, and Khmer

Visit ECHO website HERE to learn more.

Saint Paul Forestry Downed trees from storm damage?  Here's what you need to know.  https://www.stpaul.gov/departments/parks-recreation/natural-resources/forestry/storm-response

Health Preparedness Topics


Seasonal Influenza Information can be found here

Translated material on Influenza can be found here


Tuberculosis information is available here
Emergency Preparedness information is available here


Zika Virus information

Emergency Preparedness Tools & Publications

Important templates, tools, and talking points to help you prepare now so you're ready for later.

Emergency Supply List English












Family Emergency Plan English












FEMA/Ready.gov Preparedness Video Library

RED CROSS EMERGENCY APP - The Red Cross provides a number of mobile apps to help prepare for disasters, including Floods, Tornadoes and Wildfires.  The Red Cross also offers Disaster Safety for Children to help talk with children about disaster preparedness topics. 


  The City of Saint Paul has completed its accreditation review and is compliant with all 64 Emergency Management industry standards. This is a great accomplishment by the city that only about a dozen other cities can claim! You can read more about this here.


Counties and cities own the sirens, and therefore decide how and when to activate them. The National Weather Service does not sound them.

Sirens are activated for: 

  • Monthly test (1st Wednesday of every month at 1 PM)
  • Tornado warnings
  • All severe thunderstorm warnings with winds in excess of 70 MPH
  • Sirens normally sound for about three minutes, and then go silent
  • There is no such thing as an "all-clear" for storms

What to do when sirens are activated:

  • When sirens are sounded they are to alert people outside of an impending severe weather event.
  • If you hear the sirens immediately stop what you are doing, go indoors and tune into your favorite radio or tv station for further details or seek shelter immediately.
  • To receive severe weather warnings indoors, Emergency Management and the National Weather Service recommend the purchase of a weather radio, which can be found on-line and can be purchased from local electronic stores. These radios can be programed for your specific County and can sound for a variety of weather events.