State of Ohio EMA – Basic Public Information Officer’s Course in Medina County

Day-2 of Ohio EMA’s Basic Public Information Officer’s course here in Medina County EMA welcoming participants from two different FEMA Regions to our class!

We have representation from almost every ESF – outstanding to see that kind of participation in our state class.

It’s going to be a packed two days of training including classroom discussion…

…complex in-class activities…

…on-camera interviews…

…engaging (and crazy reporter) type questions…

…and of course we had several contentious mock press conferences.

Train like you fight right? We also discussed how our varied experiences lends a ton of expertise to our ongoing operations in any community across this great nation.

Looking forward to tomorrow’s JIC/JIS course!

@rusnivek

 

Mean people do not like severe weather warnings

Dear general public: Stop being mean to the National Weather Service, State/Local government public safety, and news reporters.

When “breaking news” occurs pertaining to safety, please adhere to the warnings put forth by the official sources.

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Again, stop being mean!

Most reporters are generally nice and they want to report the facts.

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For your protection, heed all safety warnings from official sources.

@rusnivek

 

PIO Tip: Frame your shot and reduce your onscene variables

I was finishing up my AARs and found a picture from the last night of the Republican National Convention (RNC).

Quick tip for you PIOs doing field reporting: Frame your shot.

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Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams doing an interview with Time Magazine. Obvious chalked roadway with profane statement behind him. Videographer is recording at an upward angle to frame his subject.

During the RNC, we found that it was critical to frame the shot. Onscene shots were particularly tough because so many activist groups had signs, chalked, or painted words that are inappropriate for pictures or even worse yet, uncontrolled live broadcast hits (Periscope or FacebookLive or YouTubeLive).

Additionally, live outdoor broadcasts from the scene are challenging because it is difficult to control the natural and man-made variables.

So as PIOs we need to reduce any signs, ropes, wires, etc….that could affect your framed shot.

 

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Trust me, reduce the amount of variables to a bare minimum.

Focus your energy in delivering your message. #PIO

@rusnivek

 

Apps away~! #NatlPrep #free #app #tech

Final week of 2015 National Preparedness Month!

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Don’t freak out, still lots of things to do like download a bunch of free apps for your smart phone!

Here’s an example of a good app from the State of North Carolina Emergency Management Agency’s ReadyNC.

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The ReadyNC app It talks about numerous preparedness activities as well as what to do after an emergency. Download it here.

FEMA’s got a great app that you can use to reference great info on disasters and preparedness.

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Additionally you can check out their new Disaster Reporter feature, Social Hub, and get free vetted weather alerts. Download it here.

Easy way to inform others? Get out there and present/share your preparedness efforts with all your partners in public safety.

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You know the phrase: An ounce of prevention/preparedness can save…..

Don’t wait. Communicate. Make your emergency plan today.

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Download a bunch of free apps today!.

Get your Mundays over by clicking here!

@rusnivek

Toledo LifeFlight under the microscope for non-life threatening aeromedical transport #EMS

So it seems like Toledo LifeFlight and Put-In-Bay EMS just made WKYC’s news last night. I’m not quite sure who this investigative report is intended to pin the blame, but to me it sounds like Toledo LifeFlight is under the microscope because of non-life threatening aeromedical transport.

(Pertaining to EMS calls) “We don’t want to go short on the staff here.” – Keith Kahler, PiB EMS.

“…anxiety attack that looks very similar to a chest pain” – Dr. Daniel Schwerin, Toledo LifeFlight Medical Director.

Watch WKYC’s investigative story here

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Did WKYC cut Dr. Schwerin clip a bit short? Did the spokesperson from PiB EMS give contradictory statements? Or did Tom Meyer get too excited just by reading police reports?

Let me know what you think.

@rusnivek

You should know about the Worcester-6 Cold Storage Warehouse Fire #W6

Take a few moments to learn about the now infamous Cold Storage Warehouse Fire in Worcester, Massachusetts.

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Honor your fallen Firefighters who gave their life on December 3, 1999.

  • Worcester Fire Rescue-1 Firefighter Paul Brotherton
  • Worcester Fire Rescue-1 Firefighter Jeremiah Lucey
  • Worcester Fire Rescue-1 Lieutenant Thomas Spencer
  • Worcester Fire Ladder-2 Firefighter Timothy Jackson
  • Worcester Fire Engine-3 Firefighter James Lyons
  • Worcester Fire Engine-3 Firefighter Joseph McGuirk

***In my opinion, this fire is a defining moment in fire service history***

All Firefighters should know about this fire by heart.

Well, even if you don’t read the entire NIOSH report, at LEAST read the summary below.

SUMMARY

On December 3, 1999, six career fire fighters died after they became lost in a six-floor, maze-like, cold-storage and warehouse building while searching for two homeless people and fire extension. It is presumed that the homeless people had accidentally started the fire on the second floor sometime between 1630 and 1745 hours and then left the building. An off-duty police officer who was driving by called Central Dispatch and reported that smoke was coming from the top of the building. When the first alarm was struck at 1815 hours, the fire had been in progress for about 30 to 90 minutes. Beginning with the first alarm, a total of five alarms were struck over a span of 1 hour and 13 minutes, with the fifth called in at 1928 hours. Responding were 16 apparatus, including 11 engines, 3 ladders, 1 rescue, and 1 aerial scope, and a total of 73 fire fighters. Two incident commanders (IC#1 and IC#2) in two separate cars also responded.

Fire fighters from the apparatus responding on the first alarm were ordered to search the building for homeless people and fire extension. During the search efforts, two fire fighters (Victims 1 and 2) became lost, and at 1847 hours, one of them sounded an emergency message. A head count ordered by Interior Command confirmed which fire fighters were missing.

Fire fighters who had responded on the first and third alarms were then ordered to conduct search-and-rescue operations for Victims 1 and 2 and the homeless people. During these efforts, four more fire fighters became lost. Two fire fighters (Victims 3 and 4) became disoriented and could not locate their way out of the building. At 1910 hours, one of the fire fighters radioed Command that they needed help finding their way out and that they were running out of air. Four minutes later he radioed again for help. Two other fire fighters (victims 5 and 6) did not make initial contact with command nor anyone at the scene, and were not seen entering the building. However, according to the Central Dispatch transcripts, they may have joined Victims 3 and 4 on the fifth floor. At 1924 hours, IC#2 called for a head count and determined that six fire fighters were now missing. At 1949 hours, the crew from Engine 8 radioed that they were on the fourth floor and that the structural integrity of the building had been compromised. At 1952 hours, a member from the Fire Investigations Unit reported to the Chief that heavy fire had just vented through the roof on the C side. At 2000 hours, Interior Command ordered all companies out of the building, and a series of short horn blasts were sounded to signal the evacuation. Fire fighting operations changed from an offensive attack, including search and rescue, to a defensive attack with the use of heavy-stream appliances. After the fire had been knocked down, search-and-recovery operations commenced until recall of the box alarm 8 days later on December 11, 1999, at 2227 hours, when all six fire fighters’ bodies had been recovered. NIOSH investigators concluded that, to minimize the risk of similar occurrences, fire departments should

    • ensure that inspections of vacant buildings and pre-fire planning are conducted which cover all potential hazards, structural building materials (type and age), and renovations that may be encountered during a fire, so that the Incident Commander will have the necessary structural information to make informed decisions and implement an appropriate plan of attack

  • ensure that the incident command system is fully implemented at the fire scene

  • ensure that a separate Incident Safety Officer, independent from the Incident Commander, is appointed when activities, size of fire, or need occurs, such as during multiple alarm fires, or responds automatically to pre-designated fires

  • ensure that standard operating procedures (SOPs) and equipment are adequate and sufficient to support the volume of radio traffic at multiple-alarm fires

  • ensure that Incident Command always maintains close accountability for all personnel at the fire scene

  •  use guide ropes/tag lines securely attached to permanent objects at entry portals and place high-intensity floodlights at entry portals to assist lost or disoriented fire fighters in emergency escape

  • ensure that a Rapid Intervention Team is established and in position upon their arrival at the fire scene

  • implement an overall health and safety program such as the one recommended in NFPA 1500, Standard on Fire Department Occupational Safety and Health Program

  • consider using a marking system when conducting searches

  • identify dangerous vacant buildings by affixing warning placards to entrance doorways or other openings where fire fighters may enter

  • ensure that officers enforce and fire fighters follow the mandatory mask rule per administrative guidelines established by the department

  • explore the use of thermal imaging cameras to locate lost or downed fire fighters and civilians in fire environments

 

 

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@rusnivek

Yarnell Hill Incident Commander discusses investigative report #LODD

USA Today interviewed the Yarnell Hill Incident Commander (IC) discusses the investigative report after the 19 Line of Duty Deaths (LODDs) from Prescott Fire.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/10/04/commander-reflects-on-yarnell-fire-tragedy/2926419/

Opinion: I don’t think this report exonerates his command team.

My recommendations: Proper training for all responders will help better understand ever-changing and very dangerous conditions on the scene.

@rusnivek

Yarnell Hill Fire Investigation Report Video on the Prescott 19 (LODD) #Firefighter #HotShot

Here’s the video for the Yarnell Hill Fire Investigation report.

*Note: Posting of these videos and reports is NOT an endorsement or approval of these reports.

@rusnivek