Cold weather prep and our strong partnership with NWS Chicago

On the ready! So many things happen behind the scenes as Emergency Management Pros continue to plan and coordinate in prep for the severe cold weather inbound to our area of responsibility (AOR).

Our rock solid partnership with the National Weather Service Chicago continues to shine as we share information to our partners as well as the general public. Incorporating additional info like the Frostbite vs Hypothermia fact sheet from CDC is a bonus as we look to temps falling into the mid -20s with the windchill to reach -50 to -60.

Yikes is right.

If all predictions are correct, the forecasted temperatures are historic lows.

Our staff is currently conducting a conference call with police, fire, public works, and emergency management agencies within to discuss the extreme cold weather event tonight through Thursday.

All hands working!

Also, thanks for the briefing Ricky from the NWS Chicago!

@rusnivek

 

Deep frying my turkey – I’m gonna die #DFT2018

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I’m about to die.

Glug glug glug – I measured it w/ water and turkey in the pot.

So it’s a calculated amount of peanut oil in there.

Just to be on the safe side, I’ll leave a little room for turkey expansion.

Maybe my camera puts on more pounds. HA!

OK, my propane tank is as far away as I can get it.

Don’t think I want an explosion.

Then, in case things go bad, I got some protective gear.

Awww yeah baby! Warm AND protected!

And maybe, if things go bad, I can Hong Kong Phooey kick it into the grass away from the building right?

Time to gear up!

Thinking back, this was probably a good idea to wear my turnout coat and gloves.

Yeah, I think Chicago has had a big fire before.

Yikes.

Buuuuuuuuuuut why does my turkey look like its on a cross?!?!?!??!?!?

.

But first, lemme take a selfie…

…for proof of life.

Fire is on. Waaaaaaaaaaaaay hot.

What? Did you say drop it like it’s hot?!?!

Awwwww yeah, time to get crazy-let’s drop this sucker in.

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!

HHOOLLEEEYYYYY MOOOOOOOLEEEYYYYY!

 

DDDDDDDDDAAAAAAAAYYYUUUUUUUMMMMMMMMMMMMM!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Am I at the bottom yet?!?!!??! OMG! Why is this soooooo frickin hot!!!!!

Well, so far so good! I haven’t burned anything….yet.

I also took the time to clear away any brush and debris from the area. Also notice the brick non-wood sprinklered building next to me?

Additional information, I also had backup from a retired Fire Chief from the State of Ohio Fire Marshall’s Office right next to me. Despite a whole bunch of white helmets, it was definitely worth having a backup!

Did I have a backup plan? You know I did. First off, I would NOT have done this.

Second, if things got bad, I would have definitely called 9-1-1.

The last thing I need is my friends from CFD getting pissed. Tho, TBH, they would have made me fill out the NIFRS report.

And third, this was the backup plan.

Yeah, the IMT PSC and FEMA MCP comes out more often than you think.

So in the end, everything turned out great. Turkey was awesome and soooo delicious.

Few deep frying turkey tips for you:

  • Measure your peanut oil level (water + bird in pot)
  • A little less on the fill line with peanut oil is good
  • SLOWLY drop your bird in the oil
  • Use gloves and protective clothing as hot oil splashes everywhere
  • Test bird doneness via internal temperature (not time)
  • Have multiple fire extinguishers available
  • Have a rapid dump site available away from building
  • In case things go bad, have a cell phone to call 9-1-1 quickly

This year, our family invited a few new Navy family and friends over for dinner.

Glad to spend Thanksgiving with those who protect our freedoms 24-7.

We all have much to be thankful for this year.

@rusnivek

 

 

JIC/JIS Course at IFD HQ – Day-3!

Day-3 of the Joint Information Center/Joint Information System course here at the Indianapolis Fire Headquarters.

This place is super nice…

…and a bonus welcome by the Chief of the department – Fire Chief Malone!

Outstanding to see that kind of engagement of a large metro fire department stop by to say hi. And of course the IFD PIO BC Rita Reith working the PIO magic too!

Great discussion on when situations get worse…ie disaster declarations and how as situations start to grow, how we as a nation respond to help assist others.

You know we had lots of discussion on JIC/JIS operations and needs.

Also discussed how the executive policy room could affect actions of the field PIOs as well as the JIC – which stresses the need for solid, one voice communications from the Emergency Operations Center.

I know, I know, coordination again huh? But it’s the truth! If we don’t work together, we will likely fail our constituents. We must work together to support our ongoing efforts of safety with all our partners.

Great dialog on mutual aid partnerships. Regardless of the situation, we can all work closely with each other and share ideas.

Me? I am very proud of the work from everyone in the class this week.

Looking forward to working with all of you during the next big one.

Until then, go forth and tweet good stuff!

@rusnivek

Day-1 of the FEMA Basic PIO Course in Indianapolis

Day-1 of the FEMA Basic PIO course here in Indianapolis!

Glad to be teaching with FEMA Master PIO Erica Creech…

…and WTFD Capt Mike Pruitt…

…and oh a quick surprise….FEMA Master PIO Rita Reith!

That’s right, for those of you keeping score, this is the first time 3 FEMA Master PIOs have taught the Basic PIO Course. Whoop whooop!

Don’t worry, we did some on camera interviews as well as some fun dialog with out class that hail from Indiana and Kentucky!

We talked about press conferences and the importance and the need for onscene communications not only with the news media, but also the general public. Like the breaking news coming out of Mercy Hospital in Chicago.

Also sharing some stories of breaking news in Cleveland.

Great dynamic and solid discussion from everyone who attended today’s first day of FEMA Basic PIO!

@rusnivek

FEMA OEMA G0291: Joint Information Center/System class at the Cleveland EOC! #PIO

Happy AlohaFriday and a great start to the FEMA OEMA G0291: Joint Information Center / Joint Information System course here at the Cleveland EOC!

So naturally, we talked a bunch of JIC stuff including our third guest VIP – day shift Cleveland JIC Manager of the 2016 RNC and the led JIC Manager of the Christmas plane crash in 2016, Beth Zietlow DeJesus!!!

Not only sharing stories about coordination amongst local, county, and Federal agencies on the recovery process, Beth was able to share a few stories about the media on controlling the message and handling mis-information.

Great experiences to share with out new PIOs!

Outstanding class this week. Proud of the work and collaboration in class shared by everyone. Great to see these new PIOs as they increase their organization’s visibility.

Now go forth, and use your new PIO skillz for good!

Also, yeah.

@rusnivek

Day-2 of the FEMA OEMA G0290: Basic #PIO at Cleveland EOC

Day-2 of the FEMA Basic PIO Course in Cleveland, Ohio!!! Starting out the day with one of the best JIC Managers in the biz, ladies and gents, one of the orig FEMA Master PIOs put your hands together for ERICA CREECH!!!!!

Sharing her experiences with the class on PIOs and coordination was critical in countless EOC and JIC activations.

In a heartbeat, I’d work for Erica any day in the JIC.

Don’t worry, we jumped back on the train (FEMA’s powerpoint slides) to talk and debate about press releases.

Since Steve is from media, he loves his inverted pyramid. But are press releases valuable? Needed? Seems we had quite the spirited discussion on the necessity and timely appeal of press releases.

After lunch, we were fortunate enough to grab, IMHO, the best of the best media talent in Cleveland.

Fox8: Jennifer Steer (@jensteer)

WOIO-19: Chris Tanaka (@Chris_Tanaka)

WEWS-5: Homa Bash Ball (@HomaBashWEWS)

WKYC-3: Barry Wolf (@photowolfTV)

Cleveland PlainDealer: Ginger Christ (@GChristCLE)

These pros not only talk a good game, but their social media skills are top shelf! I submit to you Barry’s fashion selfie from the front of the room.

Solid!

These folks were able to dedicate their time to answer any I mean ANY questions that our new PIOs had.

Proud to see new relationships and transparency with all parties involved.

Why? We hear of soooo many bad interactions and exchanges with the media. This kind of engagement showcases that if we work together and we share our knowledge of ongoing issues, we can help each other out.

I can’t begin to tell you how happy I am to see this kind of action happening in class.

Like nurturing new PIOs and helping them network…OMG THIS IS WHAT EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT IS ALL ABOUT!!!!!!!!

Yeah yeah, I’ll get off the soapbox now.

But seriously, this media panel has been one of my absolute favorites to have because….well, because of this…

Brah, Tanaka’s got some seriously good selfie skillz. Many mahalos to all of my media panel that showcased the best of TV news media.

After the media panel left, we reviewed all of our on camera interviews.

Sharing our challenges but learning from others in a productive and positive way increases participant on camera skills.

To close out the day, we also had our second and most lauded PIO stop by. Ladies and gents, the orig filmmaker himself, raise the roof cause it’s Cleveland Fire very own PIO Mike Noooooooooooorman!!!!!!!

Glad to spend a few minutes with fire’s new PIO who jumped head first into the role for CFD. FYI-Mike was a participant in a class that Steve and I taught in Summit County Ohio so we are proud to see him flourishing in his role at CFD.

Outstanding and super fun day with everyone. Back at it tomorrow with another special guest and to talk about JIC/JIS!

@rusnivek

FEMA OEMA G0290: Basic #PIO at the City of Cleveland EOC!

Outstanding start to this week’s FEMA G0290: Basic PIO course sponsored by Ohio EMA and the City of Cleveland Emergency Management!

Special thanks to CEM Alex Pellom for the invitation to hang for a few days in the Emergency Operations Center!

Guess who I get to teach with this week? Fresh off the disaster wheel, Assistant Fire Chief Steve Bosso!!!

Don’t mind his grumps face, you’d be a bit tired if you were EMACed to work Hurricane Florence too. I’m excited to hear about his experience working with South Carolina’s Emergency Management Division PIO Derrec Becker.

And yes, if you were wondering, we are holding class IN the actual City of Cleveland Emergency Operations Center!

Interviews? Heck yeah – you know we did!

Incredibly valuable time on camera.

Spent some time doing group work and communications strategy with many partners from across the State of Ohio and the State of Pennsylvania.

Showcasing partnerships and strengthening collaborative messaging during the preparedness…

…will help during response phase planning and support for ongoing operations.

Additionally the blending of resources embodying the all-hazards mentality, is critical when dealing with larger disasters/emergencies. Here’s Police, Fire, EMS, Health, Public Works, and Executive Policy working together for a coordinated message.

Steve had a few injects too…like branding. Steve is a former photojournalist so he’s got the photog eye for these kinds of things with some fancy camera work…

And not to worry, in order to share real world experiences, we had our first subject matter expert – Cleveland Police Public Information Officer Jennifer Ciaccia stop by to talk about her experiences as the PIO for CPD.

So many issues to deal with esp during a National Special Security Event (NSSE) – the 2016 Republican National Convention! And of course a whole bunch of other cases including the 3 girls missing for 10+ years (Castro case), Facebook killer, CJ Saves CLE, St. Patrick’s Day Parade, etc….

Whew – full day! Great dynamic class.

Solid first day. Looking forward to day-2 of the Basic PIO!

@rusnivek