Fit for Duty: The Resilient Responder

The term “fit for duty” in modern firefighting goes beyond being physically fit to include being resilient to the stress and emotional effects of the job. For individual resilience, this means having the ability to prepare for and recover from stressful events so the responder can return to duty with some sense of normality. To accomplish this, responders must sleep well, eat right, and positively engage with peers.

Success or Failure of a Response: There Are Options

The success or failure of an emergency response depends on many factors: planning, capabilities, training, tools, funding, public trust, and the list goes on. This edition of the DomPrep Journal examines potential points of failure as well as formulas for success when responding to a crisis.

Facial Recognition Making an Appearance in Public Safety

The use of facial recognition (FR) technologies to support public safety has long been considered a potent tool for law enforcement. The capability to automatically identify persons of interest in real-time has the potential to alert police of threats before an incident occurs. Long considered a technology of science fiction, FR is finally moving into the public safety mainstream with new capabilities now being rolled out.

The True Test of a Successful Crisis Response: Public Trust

No organization, or government, can solve every problem. There will always be a crisis that will require an emergency response. And fundamental to the success of that response will be the public’s reaction. Emergency managers can react and can mobilize, but they will not be successful unless they do so in such a way as to ensure the public trust. This was apparent in 2005 with Hurricane Katrina, which was a crisis of government.

Ham Radio in Emergency Operations

Many people grew up hearing about disasters in far-off lands and how amateur (ham) radio operators were initially the only means of contact with the outside world. Disasters, both near and far, still occur today, and ham radio operators continue to volunteer their skills and personal radio equipment to serve the public. From a planning and operations perspective, emergency management professionals must effectively include these volunteer resources into comprehensive emergency management plans (CEMPs).

Cuts to U.S. Bioterror Funds Risk Peril in Event of Attack

President Donald Trump’s proposed fiscal year 2018 budget would eliminate a Department of Homeland Security laboratory dedicated to countering bioterrorism and providing the science behind response and recovery efforts should an attack occur. The proposal to eliminate this lab without creating replacement capabilities elsewhere could place the U.S. at risk at a time when biotechnology proliferation is increasing access to the knowledge and capabilities for developing bioterror weapons.

Pandemic Influenza Plan - 2017 Update

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued the 2017 Update to the HHS Pandemic Influenza Plan to highlight and build upon the successes of the last decade,

Using Core Capabilities to Build County Resilience

The lack of core capability guidance diminishes counties’ levels of preparedness and resilience and is a barrier to increasing these efforts for the nation as a whole. By using community associations as force multipliers, counties can leverage this valuable resource to increase resilience-building efforts beginning at the local level. This bottom-up approach builds not only physical but social resilience at all levels.

Why NIMS Continuing Education Is Needed

The National Incident Management System (NIMS) and the National Response Framework are very important and overall well-constructed documents despite some past failures related to their implementation. However, one common denominator in disaster failures or successes is the people involved and the education and training of those personnel. Although federal mandates provide requirements for an initial certification, to date, no required refresher training exists. This article analyzes reasons that the NIMS Incident Command System (ICS) annual recertification should be required to maintain NIMS compliance.
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