Each of the MERS Detachments can concurrently support a large Disaster Field Office and multiple field operating sites within the disaster area. MERS is equipped with self-sustaining telecommunications, logistics, and operations support elements that can be driven or airlifted to the disaster location. Configurations vary; however, some MERS assets can be airlifted by C-130 military cargo aircraft.
The MERS is a national asset available for immediate deployment; as directed, equipment and personnel will deploy promptly and provide:
- Communication support to Urban Search and Rescue (US&R) ESF8
- Communication support to National Disaster Medical System (NDMS) ESF 9
- Multimedia communications and information processing support, especially for the Communications Section, Emergency Support Function (ESF) #2 of the Federal Response Plan (FRP)
- Operational support, especially for the Information and Planning Section, ESF #5 of the FRP
- Liaison to the Federal Coordinating Officer (FCO)
- Logistics and life support
- Automated information and decision support capability
- Security (facility, equipment, and personnel) management and consultation
Most equipment is preloaded or installed on heavy-duty, multi-wheel drive trucks. Some equipment is installed in transit cases.