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CIMA History
THEN and

Same companies responding then and now

The CIMA organization was formed in 1955 under the name of the "Houston Ship Channel Industries Disaster Aid Organization". In 1960 the name of the organization was changed to "Channel Industries Mutual Aid" (CIMA) a non-profit corporation. CIMA is an organization whose primary purpose is to respond to fire alarms and extinguish fires in the Greater Houston Metropolitan Area through the mutual efforts of its Members, which shall include various Houston Ship Channel industries and governmental entities that have the resources required to participate in these activities.

In 1982, the organization had grown to such size that no member facility was capable of handling all of the responding equipment available from its associate members. At that time, the organization was geographically divided into four zones to facilitate a more efficient operation during both, emergency and non-emergency situations.

CIMA's current membership consists of approximately 100 members from Industry, Municipalities, Government, and Law enforcement agencies covering Harris, Chambers, and Brazoria Counties. The organization has established many programs in its emergency response plan to provide an organized response in times of disaster. Such program include; a centralized dispatch system for the radio network, pre arranged alarm list database for it's members, a multi casualty incident plan, road block committees, and technical advice groups to name a few.

In December of 1989, during the second session, of the Seventy First Legislature, the Texas House of Representative passed a concurrent resolution commending the CIMA organization for invaluable assistance provided to one of its members in the after math of their tragic accident. The resolution also recognizes CIMA as one of the largest mutual aid organizations in the world.

CIMA's preparedness for response is due to a well-detailed plan, training drills, and formal reviews after each incident.

Although the CIMA organization was established for the Houston Ship Channel area, it maintains agreements with other mutual aid organizations along the Texas / Louisiana coast, to provide assistance or receive assistance during major events. CIMA has shared its experience and procedures with other mutual aid organizations and countries such as, International Red Cross, Germany, Switzerland, and Australia.

As with any organization or group, the real assets for the organization continues to be the people and their dedication for improvement.