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Short Citation:
Office of Response and Restoration, 2024: CAMEO (Computer-Aided Management of Emergency Operations) Software Suite,

Item Identification

Title: CAMEO (Computer-Aided Management of Emergency Operations) Software Suite
Short Name: cameo1
Status: In Work
Publication Date: 2014

CAMEO is the umbrella name for a system of software applications used widely to plan for and respond to chemical emergencies. All of the programs in the suite work interactively to share and display critical information in a timely fashion; the programs can also be used individually. ALOHA (Areal Locations of Hazardous Atmospheres) is a hazard modeling tool used to evaluate the atmospheric dispersion of hazardous chemical vapors, as well as some fires and explosions. ALOHA prompts the user to enter basic scenario information (such as weather conditions and details about how the chemical is escaping), and ALOHA will create a threat zone estimate of the area where a hazard (such as toxicity or thermal radiation) has exceeded a user-specified Level of Concern (LOC). CAMEO is a database application (with eight modules) designed to assist with the data management requirements under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA). CAMEO Chemicals features an extensive database of chemical datasheets that provide critical response information, including physical properties, health hazards, air and water hazards, and recommendations for firefighting, first aid, and spill response. Additionally, it also has a reactivity prediction tool that can be used to estimate what hazards (such as explosions or chemical fires) could occur if chemicals were to mix together. MARPLOT (Mapping Applications for Response, Planning, and Local Operational Tasks) is a mapping program; users can quickly view and modify maps, and they can create their own objects to place on the maps. ALOHA threat zones can be displayed on a map in MARPLOT, and objects on the map (such as facilities) can be linked to related records in the CAMEO program. Tier2 Submit is an adjunct program in the suite, which allows users to complete EPCRA Tier II forms electronically. The facility, chemical inventory, and contact information entered into Tier2 Submit can also be imported into the corresponding modules in CAMEO.


The CAMEO suite is an integrated set of programs designed to help emergency planners and responders plan for and quickly respond to chemical accidents.



Other Citation Details:

The CAMEO\xAE software suite is an integrated set of applications jointly developed by NOAA and EPA. The suite includes four core programs: ALOHA\xAE (a modeling application that estimates threat zones associated with hazardous chemical releases), CAMEO (a database application to assist with data management for emergency planning and response), CAMEO Chemicals (a database of hazardous chemical datasheets), and MARPLOT\xAE (a mapping program). Tier2 Submit is an adjunct program to the suite; it is used to complete Tier II forms electronically and that information can be imported into the CAMEO program.

Supplemental Information:

The CAMEO suite was selected by the United Nations Environment Programme as a tool to help developing nations prepare for and respond to chemical accidents. Under UNEP's Awareness and Preparedness for Emergencies at the Local Level (APPELL) program, the CAMEO suite has been demonstrated or taught in 50 countries.


Theme Keywords

Thesaurus Keyword
ISO 19115 Topic Category
NOS Data Explorer Topic Category Environmental Monitoring
None air dispersion model
None CAMEO Chemicals
None chemical database
None chemical emergencies
None emergency planners
None first responders
None regulatory compliance
None response information
None Tier2 Submit

Spatial Keywords

Thesaurus Keyword
None Global
None United States

Physical Location

Organization: Office of Response and Restoration
City: Silver Spring
State/Province: MD

Data Set Information

Data Set Scope Code: Data Set
Maintenance Frequency: As Needed
Entity Attribute Overview:

ALOHA will estimate the source strength for three types of chemical source releases: puddles, tanks (gas, unpressurized liquid, and pressurized liquid), and gas pipelines. Users can also bypass ALOHA's calculations and provide their own source strength values for a gas using the direct source to describe a release directly into the atmosphere. Depending on the release conditions, ALOHA can model several different types of scenarios: toxic vapor clouds, flammable area of vapor clouds, vapor cloud explosions, pool fires, jet fires, and Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosions (BLEVEs). For dispersion scenarios, ALOHA models dispersion of both neutrally-buoyant (Gaussian) gases and heavier-than-air gases. ALOHA only estimates one type of hazard for each scenario; the hazards modeled in ALOHA are toxicity, flammability, thermal radiation, and overpressure. ALOHA's threat zone estimates are displayed on a grid in ALOHA or on a map in MARPLOT, and users can get information on the hazard level at a specific location using the threat point feature. Users can save accident scenarios as ALOHA-readable files, then easily evaluate a variety of scenarios and archive results. Contents of output windows can be readily transferred to documents and reports in word-processing or graphics applications. The CAMEO program has eight modules: Facilities, Chemicals in Inventory, Contacts, Incidents, Special Locations, Routes, Resources, and Screening and Scenarios. The first seven modules are a place for users to enter information about chemicals that are stored or transported in their communities, as well as information about locations that may need special attention during a chemical accident and resources that may be useful in a response. The Screening and Scenarios module can be used to model potential threat zones as required under EPCRA. CAMEO Chemicals includes two primary types of datasheets. Chemical datasheets provide physical properties, health hazards, information about air and water hazards, and recommendations for firefighting, first aid, and spill response. UN/NA datasheets provide response information from the Emergency Response Guidebook and shipping information from the Hazardous Materials Table (49 CFR 172.101). In addition to the information on the datasheets, users can also add chemical datasheets to the MyChemicals collection to see what hazards might occur if the chemicals in the collection were mixed together. MARPLOT comes pre-loaded with some map data, and users can add their own map data. Users can display ALOHA threat zones on the map and link map objects to records in the CAMEO program. Users can also perform population estimates using U.S. Census data. Tier2 Submit includes all of the fields from the EPCRA Tier II forms, as well as some additional fields that are required or requested by states. Users can generate paper or electronic files to submit according to their state's requirements, and users can also import that data into the CAMEO program.

Entity Attribute Detail Citation:

Distribution Liability:

The United States Government has used its best efforts to incorporate accurate and complete data into ALOHA\xAE, CAMEO\xAE, CAMEO Chemicals, and MARPLOT\xAE. Nevertheless, the United States government does not warrant accuracy or completeness, is not responsible for errors and omissions, and is not liable for any direct, indirect or consequential damages flowing from the recipient's use of ALOHA, CAMEO, CAMEO Chemicals, and MARPLOT. The CAMEO suite software programs are being distributed "as is" and the United States government does not make any warranty claims, either expressed or implied, with respect to the software, its quality, accuracy, completeness, performance, merchantability or fitness for any intended purpose.

Support Roles

Data Steward

CC ID: 517686
Date Effective From: 2014
Date Effective To:
Contact (Position): CAMEO Project Lead
Address: 7600 Sand Point Way NE
Seattle, WA 98115
Email Address:


CC ID: 517688
Date Effective From: 2014
Date Effective To:
Contact (Position): CAMEO Project Lead
Address: 7600 Sand Point Way NE
Seattle, WA 98115
Email Address:

Metadata Contact

CC ID: 517689
Date Effective From: 2014
Date Effective To:
Contact (Position): CAMEO Project Lead
Address: 7600 Sand Point Way NE
Seattle, WA 98115
Email Address:

Point of Contact

CC ID: 517687
Date Effective From: 2014
Date Effective To:
Contact (Position): CAMEO Project Lead
Address: 7600 Sand Point Way NE
Seattle, WA 98115
Email Address:


Currentness Reference: Publication Date

Extent Group 1

Extent Group 1 / Geographic Area 1

CC ID: 517692
W° Bound: -180
E° Bound: 180
N° Bound: 90
S° Bound: -90

Extent Group 1 / Time Frame 1

CC ID: 517691
Time Frame Type: Continuing
Start: 1982

Access Information

Security Class: Unclassified
Data Access Procedure:

The desktop programs in the CAMEO software suite must be downloaded and installed individually.;

Data Access Constraints:


Data Use Constraints:

ALOHA was designed with first responders in mind. Its computations represent a compromise between accuracy and speed: it has been designed to produce good results quickly enough to be of use to responders. It is intended to be used for estimating threat zones for short range, short duration chemical accidents; a threat zone is the area where a hazard (such as toxicity, flammability, thermal radiation, or damaging overpressure) has exceeded a user-specified Level of Concern (LOC). Results produced by ALOHA are estimates and should not be considered precise answers. ALOHA results can be unreliable when the following conditions exist: very low wind speeds, very stable atmospheric conditions, or concentration patchiness (particularly near the spill source). ALOHA does not account for the effects of byproducts from fires, explosions, or chemical reactions; particulates; chemical mixtures; wind shifts and terrain steering effects; terrain; or hazardous fragments.

Distribution Information

Distribution 1

CC ID: 517693
Download URL:


File Type (Deprecated): computer programs



CC ID: 517685
URL Type:
Online Resource

Activity Log

Activity Log 1

CC ID: 517711
Activity Date/Time: 2014-04-21

Date that the source FGDC record was last modified.

Activity Log 2

CC ID: 517710
Activity Date/Time: 2017-04-05

Converted from FGDC Content Standards for Digital Geospatial Metadata (version FGDC-STD-001-1998) using '' script. Contact Tyler Christensen (NOS) for details.

Activity Log 3

CC ID: 719458
Activity Date/Time: 2018-02-08

Partial upload of Positional Accuracy fields only.

Data Quality

Horizontal Positional Accuracy:

User-entered data and imported data layers in MARPLOT conform to the latitude/longitude grid, and the data is only as accurate as the user provides. Background basemaps are also available from reputable web mapping services and online map providers.

Completeness Report:

CAMEO Chemicals database contains over 5,000 chemical datasheets and approximately 100,000 synonyms, trade names, and other names. Chemical datasheets contain names, formulas, and identification numbers for the chemical, as well as regulation information and hazards analysis information. Chemical datasheets provide detailed response information about hazardous chemicals, including data regarding the chemical's properties and toxicology.

Conceptual Consistency:

ALOHA's user interface is designed to minimize operator error. The program checks information entered by the user before proceeding to solutions. If a particular input value is unlikely or not physically possible, ALOHA requests a new value. The CAMEO program is divided into 8 modules allowing the user to organize information needed to manage emergency planning and response. Information that pertains to the user's community can be added to all modules, allowing users to maintain basic information on facilities that store chemicals, on the inventory of chemicals at the facility (Tier II), and on emergency planning resources.


Process Steps

Process Step 1

CC ID: 517683

During a chemical incident, users can combine the programs in the CAMEO suite to identify and learn about the chemical, model the release in ALOHA (if applicable), display the threat zones in MARPLOT, estimate potential population impacts in MARPLOT, and use the MARPLOT map to quickly identify locations that may be impacted by the incident and access any linked information on those locations in the CAMEO program. The CAMEO Chemicals database contains over 5,000 chemical datasheets and over 2,000 UN/NA datasheets. Users can search for datasheets using names, identification numbers, and other data fields to identify unknown substances during an incident. Once a chemical is identified, CAMEO Chemicals provides firefighting and spill response recommendations, physical properties, health hazards, and first aid guidance. Users also can use CAMEO Chemicals to predict potential reactivity between two or more chemicals, if they are mixed together. If the chemical is an air dispersion or flammable hazard, users may be able to use the ALOHA hazard model to predict the threat zone for a chemical release. (Not all substances in the CAMEO Chemicals database can be modeled in ALOHA.) ALOHA outputs include the threat zone picture (representing the area where a hazard is predicted to exceed a user-specified Level of Concern at some point after the release begins), a source strength graph (either the rate at which the chemical enters the atmosphere or the burn rate, depending on the scenario), the threat point picture or text (describing the hazard at a particular location of concern), and the text summary screen that summarizes the data inputs and ALOHA's calculations. Users can display the ALOHA threat zone and threat point on a map in MARPLOT. Users can add information to MARPLOT maps, such as the locations of facilities storing hazardous materials and populations of special concern. Users can also link those objects to records in the CAMEO program to store more information about these locations (such as addresses, hours of opening, and phone numbers for emergency contacts).

Process Date/Time: 2014-01-01 00:00:00

Catalog Details

Catalog Item ID: 40637
GUID: gov.noaa.nmfs.inport:40637
Metadata Record Created By: Tyler Christensen
Metadata Record Created: 2017-04-05 14:53+0000
Metadata Record Last Modified By: SysAdmin InPortAdmin
Metadata Record Last Modified: 2023-05-30 18:09+0000
Metadata Record Published: 2018-02-08
Owner Org: ORR
Metadata Publication Status: Published Externally
Do Not Publish?: N
Metadata Last Review Date: 2018-02-08
Metadata Review Frequency: 1 Year
Metadata Next Review Date: 2019-02-08