Hazard Prevention Division

The Division is responsible for dealing with the risks to human life, the environment and major assets arising from avalanches, floods, debris flows, landslides, rockfall processes, earthquakes and major accidents.

It oversees the cantonal implementation of the Federal Hydraulic Engineering and parts of the Forest Acts and Water Protection act and carries out the tasks directly assigned to it by the legislation. The Division provides financial and expert support to the cantons for:

  • the compilation of hazard documentation;
  • protective forest maintenance;
  • in measures to limit and reduce the risks from floods, landslides, fall processes and avalanches in the long term; 
  • the planning and implementation of sustainable renaturation measures.

As the federal earthquake office, the division is responsible for the coordination of earthquake mitigation and for ensuring that construction projects carried out in the sphere of influence of the federal authorities are earthquake resistant. It promotes the implementation of preventive measures by the cantons, communes and individuals.

In addition, the Division oversees the implementation of the Major Accidents Ordinance and supports the responsible bodies within the federal authorities and the cantons in its implementation.

The division is responsible for the topics: 


Josef Eberli

Josef Eberli
Position: head of division

Gian Reto Bezzola

Gian Reto Bezzola
Position: head of section Risk management, deputy head of division

Stéphane Losey
Position: head of section Landslides, Avalanches and Protection Forest

Martin Merkofer

Martin Merkofer
Position: head of section Prevention of Major Accidents and Earthquake Mitigation

Adrian Schertenleib
head of section Flood protection

Dorothea Wabbels
Position: head of staff unit

Last modification 22.12.2022

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Federal Office for the Environment FOEN
Hazard Prevention Division

Postal address:
CH-3003 Bern

Location of our offices :
Papiermühlestrasse 172, 3063 Ittigen

Tel.: +41 58 464 23 80


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