Firefighter health and safety
MSA, DuPont, and the National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) have awarded essential turnout gear to fire departments in Illinois and Ohio through MSA’s Globe Gear Giveaway. This annual program began in 2012 and provides much-needed gear to volunteer fire departments in the U.S. and Canada. In 2019, a total of 13 departments will each receive four new sets of state-of-the-art turnouts to help them increase the safety of their firefighters. The first 500 applicants also received a compliment...
LION Protects, globally renowned manufacturer of first responder personal protectiveres equipment (PPE) in the United States will host a grand opening of their newest TotalCare facility located at 735 Park North Boulevard, Suite 114, Clarkston, GA 30021 on November 8, 2019 (from 10:30 am to 4:00 pm). TotalCare fire gear maintenance TotalCare represents LION’s high-quality fire gear maintenance services, including PPE repair & retrofitting, advanced cleaning, decontamination, biohazar...
The highly acclaimed Dubai Health, Safety & Environment Forum returns to Dubai from 24-25 November, with a stellar line-up of confirmed speakers from Ministry of Health & Prevention, UAE, Dubai Municipality, ADNOC, DEWA, Emirates Global Aluminum as well as senior executives from leading international and regional companies. On the agenda for this year’s forum are topical health, safety and environment issues. With a raft of infrastructure and construction developments underway in...
INTERSCHUTZ and the USA: This winning combination is being very well received by suppliers of equipment, services and solutions for the fire and rescue services, civil protection, safety and security, with heavyweights like Spartan, MSA, Plymovent, OnSpot and HAIX already on board – all the more impressive since the show isn't taking place until the middle of October, 2020. Safety And Efficiency For Fire Departments I believe the support we have enjoyed, and continue to enjoy, for INTERS...
G3 Systems of Portland, Dorset, UK are pleased to announce the appointment of Chris Thain as Business Development Manager – Fire Protection Services. This is a new role focussing on the further international expansion of G3 Systems’ aviation and industrial fire protection services business, with an emphasis on development across the Middle East, Asia and the Americas. Chris joins G3 Systems having worked most recently in Business Development and Marketing for Devon and Somerset Fire...
Hazard Note 65 covers research that is providing insights and data nationally to help to develop new recruitment and retention strategies for SES volunteers. Findings show that volunteers deeply value their connection to their unit, derive meaning from both positive and negative emotional experiences, and sometimes have vague expectations about emergency services volunteering. Findings Of The Research Managing the expectations of volunteers is not a simple task; some volunteers have too few e...
Euralarm, the association representing the fire safety and security industry, has presented its Priorities and Challenges 2019-2024. ‘Working together for a safer and more secure future’ is the name of the document that describes areas of cooperation to achieve a safer and more secure society for Europe and build an industry that contributes to sustainable growth in Europe. One of the most basic requirements for each of us is defence against harm, no matter what form it takes. Fire Safety And Security Industry Without protective measures, the individuals that make up society are at risk. For decades the fire safety and security industry has worked diligently to develop solutions to prevent and limit the consequences from threats such as fire, theft, property damage and others. In collaboration with public authorities, policy makers, standards and certification bodies and industry associations, the industry works to address society’s needs for safety and security in Europe and globally. The members of the European fire safety and security industry want to contribute to driving sustainable growth that will strengthen the EU’s Single Market, attract investment to Europe, and expand global markets for European companies. To do this the Euralarm members are continuously assessing the opportunities and the challenges that they are facing to identify the priorities that will allow Europe to advance as a prosperous, safe society and global actor. Advancing Knowledge And Innovation The association’s priorities for 2019 to 2024 are: developing a strong Single Market and expanding global markets for quality products and services; raising standards for industry professionals through training and qualification; turning emerging technologies into sustainable solutions; advancing knowledge and innovation. Euralarm aims to accomplish this by focusing on market-oriented standards for products and services and on a pan-European testing and certification of products. Accomplishing the priorities also requires a strong focus on training and qualifications, digitalisation including cybersecurity, IoT and AI as well as partnering with research bodies. By working together, Euralarm believes to achieve a safer and more secure society for Europe and build an industry that contributes to sustainable growth in Europe.
The National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC), an organization representing the volunteer fire, emergency medical, and rescue services, has been awarded a federal Fire Prevention & Safety (FP&S) grant from FEMA to focus on responder behavioral health initiatives. The $278,900 grant will allow the NVFC to develop new tools and resources to help volunteers who are experiencing issues impacting their mental wellbeing. Need For Support Services And Resources Firefighters have a high rate of many behavioral health issues, including PTSD, depression, and addiction. The Firefighter Behavioral Health Alliance reports that more firefighters and EMS providers die from suicide each year than in the line of duty. To address the need for support services and resources, the NVFC launched the Share the Load program in 2014. This program includes outreach materials to raise awareness about the signs, symptoms, and options for those in need of support as well as a toll-free helpline that responders and their families can call for help with any behavioral health issue. Tools And Training With the new grant, the NVFC will be able to expand the Share the Load program by working to further reduce the stigma in the fire service surrounding behavioral health as well as make support more accessible. Firefighters and EMS providers experience things on a regular basis that can significantly impact their mental wellbeing" Working with partners including the American Psychological Association, the NVFC will develop tools and training for departments to help them create psychologically healthy workplaces. A national directory will also be created of counselors, psychologists, and other qualified healthcare providers who have experience working with first responders. Health And Safety Initiatives “Firefighters and EMS providers experience things on a regular basis that can significantly impact their mental wellbeing,” said NVFC Chair Steve Hirsch. “Having tools and resources to help them cope with the challenges and get assistance if needed is critical in supporting our nation’s fire and emergency services. We thank FEMA for awarding us this grant so that we can continue to help departments address behavioral health and provide real solutions to our brothers and sisters in need.” The FP&S grant is awarded by FEMA to support projects that enhance the safety of the public and firefighters from fire and related hazards. Previous FP&S grants have assisted the NVFC in developing and implementing groundbreaking health and safety initiatives including the Share the Load program, Heart-Healthy Firefighter Program, Serve Strong outreach campaign, and cancer awareness and risk reduction resources.
MagneGrip Group, manufacturer of fire station exhaust removal and air-cleaning systems, is exhibiting at Firehouse Expo in Nashville, October 10-12. MagneGrip Exhaust Removal Systems and AirHawk Air Purification Systems products will be on display in booth 617. Representatives will be available to answer any questions and demonstrate product features. MagneGrip Group manufactures air-cleaning systems for every firehouse application to eliminate exhaust fumes and other airborne contaminants that pose critical health risks.
Securitas welcomed top Fire Cadets to the Fire Service College in Moreton-in-Marsh, for an action-packed firefighting weekend giving graduate cadets a safe and realistic insight into firefighting. Securitas’ fire and safety instructors In addition to classroom demonstrations, the young cadets gained hands-on experience as they took part in real-life scenarios under the supervision of the Securitas’ highly skilled, trained fire and safety instructors. Scenarios included tackling a domestic fire, rescuing casualties and administering first aid Scenarios included tackling a domestic fire, rescuing casualties from a road traffic accident and administering first aid. The cadets were also taught how to handle breathing apparatus and witnessed a powerful backdraft demonstration. Annual firefighting weekend Over the weekend (28th – 29th September), the cadets made new friends, had loads of fun and learnt even more about what it means to be a firefighter. Richard Mills, Deputy Commissioner and Director of Operations at London Fire Brigade, joined the cadets on the first day. Richard commented, “I’m extremely proud of our London Fire Brigade Fire Cadets and inspired by how young people achieve amazing success given the right opportunities. This exciting, jam-packed weekend, hosted by Securitas UK at the Fire Service College, has allowed 16 of our top Fire Cadets to experience the absolute realities of firefighter training which I hope helps them decide if an operational career in the fire brigade is their dream. Securitas UK has hosted firefighting weekends for our cadets for the past four years and we are very grateful for their generous and continued support.” London Fire Brigade partner It is always a privilege to host this annual firefighting weekend for graduate Fire Cadets" Shaun Kennedy, Country President Securitas UK, joined the cadets for the weekend, taking part in the activities and presenting the awards. Shaun explained, “As a trusted partner to London Fire Brigade and a long-time supporter of the Fire Cadets, it is always a privilege to host this annual firefighting weekend for graduate Fire Cadets.” Shaun adds, “Watching each cadet develop new skills and gain confidence as they tackle new challenges and overcome all the obstacles we throw at them during the live scenarios, is hugely rewarding. And it’s wonderful to see how they make new friends and how the group develop a real sense of camaraderie, something I hope they’ll carry with them throughout their careers, hopefully as firefighters.” Firefighting training He further stated, “It’s a privilege to lead and inspire the next generation of firefighters and I’d like to thank everyone from across Securitas and LFB who willingly dedicate their time and expertise to make this annual event such a wonderful experience for the Fire Cadets.”
It wasn't long ago that rope-rescue contestants were climbing back down the masts of Hamburg's Rickmer Rickmers sailing ship, and now planning for the next contest has already begun: The 17th competition for Germany's professional firefighters, hosted by the Hannover Fire Brigade, will be part of INTERSCHUTZ 2020 in Hannover next June. "On Saturday at INTERSCHUTZ, all eyes will be on the rescuers," said Dieter Rohrberg, Head of the Hannover Fire Brigade. "It will be a chance for the teams to show off their skills in a fantastic setting." German Professional Fire Brigades A total of 15 rope-rescue teams from German professional fire brigades will be competing for the title at INTERSCHUTZ, where they will not only be getting together to compete, but also to share experience. At the same time, the audience will be treated to the latest news about products and equipment for successful high- and low-altitude rope rescue. The best team will make off with the coveted trophy, none of the teams will go away empty-handed The competition tender kicks off in October. Here speed is of the essence, for the first 15 teams to apply will have the chance to compete. The precise tasks will remain secret until the competition on 20 June 2020. One thing is certain, though: There will be three stations. While the best team will make off with the coveted trophy, none of the teams will go away empty-handed. Of the 110 professional fire brigades in Germany, more than half currently have rope-rescue teams. Rope Rescue Team The biggest teams belong to the big fire brigades in Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Cologne and Frankfurt/Main. But the fire brigades from Düsseldorf and Hannover are also well-positioned, given their size. In addition, the THW disaster relief organization also has a rope rescue team, as do several volunteer fire brigades. Initial training for high and low-altitude rope rescue lasts 80 hours, with a further 72 hours of training required every year. For the rope rescuers of the Hannover Fire Brigade, the year 2020 also represents an anniversary, since it was 20 years ago that rope rescue first came on the scene in Hannover. That was due to the World Exposition 2000, staged in Hannover, which featured a cable car. In order to be prepared for a potential cable car accident, the Hannover Fire Brigade formed its first rope rescue team at that time.
In response to requests from fire departments, KIMTEK has introduced the FIRELITE® FHR-205, a new version of its popular FIRELITE® series skid units for use with UTVs. Distinct from KIMTEK's patient transport units in the FIRELITE series, the FHR-205 skid unit positions the hose reel to wind off to the rear. Constructed of KIMTEK's signature rugged, high quality aluminum diamond plate and tubing, FHR-205 skid units are durable, attractive, and produced to KIMTEK's highest standards of manufacturing. Utilizing the space other models reserve for patient transport, KIMTEK's FHR-205 has positioned the Hannay 4000 Series manual reel to face rearward, winding off to the rear rather than to the side. In addition to the Hannay reel, FHR-205 units come with a hose storage area with tailgate adjacent to the pump and a Darley-Davey pump. It is available with a 55 or 70 gallon poly water tank. Optional upgrades include an electric reel rewind, Scotty Around-The-Pump foam system with 5-gallon foam cell, and electric start on the Honda-driven pump. KIMTEK offers a complete line of FIRELITE transport skid units and options to meet every department need. KIMTEK president Kimball Johnson said of the new addition to the FIRELITE line, "It's always our mission to listen to our customers who work daily to meet their department requirements while staying within budgets. We're pleased to add another version of our signature FIRELITE series that meets a specific need while delivering the KIMTEK quality and performance they rely on."
I gave a lot of thought to identifying the biggest challenge facing the American fire service in 2019. Many things came to mind: funding; fire prevention - if every building was sprinklered and all had working smoke alarms, it would solve a lot of other problems; political influences; initial, regular and ongoing training, and a bunch more. But the one constant that kept popping up is the people issue. Staffing. This obviously isn’t the first time you’ve heard that. Normally, when we talk about staffing, we talk about the number of firefighters on the apparatus. That is not exactly what I'm talking about. What I mean is, in 2019, we better figure out where our next group of recruits is coming from. Measurable Drop In Applicants If one fire department is paying more than another, members jump ship On the career side, numerous areas are reporting a measurable drop in applicants—in other words, they need people who want to be firefighters and medics. In some areas, it’s a bidding war. If one fire department is paying more than another, members jump ship. And who can blame them? They have families to take care of. But when the dust clears, there are still far fewer people interested in this job than we need. Some theories are that the new generation: Doesn’t like helping people Are self-focused Aren’t into doing physical things Are lazy Can make the same money without shift work Can make the same money without risk None of these theories gets us far in addressing the problem. The goal of any fire department is to deliver staffed, trained interior firefighters just a few minutes after someone dials 9-1-1 Big Picture Focus On the volunteer side, all you have to do is listen to a fire radio nearly anywhere in the U.S. (and Canada) and you will hear volunteer fire departments toning out... toning out... and toning out—with little response when members are responding from home or work. It, too, is a measurable problem. There are volunteer departments with little funding and others with plenty of funding. Regardless, there seems to be little “big picture” focus on solving the problem based upon what’s best for the people having the fire. Some say to simply hire career firefighters. Is it that simple? What are the pros? And are there any cons? There certainly are. Trained Interior Firefighters Some departments solve the problem by having their volunteers on duty, in quarters, ready to roll The old model of volunteers responding from home or work doesn’t work very well when you consider the proven fire spread in 2019 vs. fire spread even just 20 years ago. Some departments solve the problem by having their volunteers on duty, in quarters, ready to roll. That may be the least expensive option depending upon the local model. Some hire part-time firefighters. Some unfairly and regularly rely on mutual aid. Some have a fair and balanced mutual aid system. Some have their heads in the sand. The goal of any fire department is to deliver staffed, trained interior firefighters just a few minutes after someone dials 9-1-1. If we don’t have people knocking on the fire station doors to become career firefighters or to volunteer, that goal is in jeopardy. I simply can’t see a bigger, more immediate challenge for 2019 than the “people” issue.
Firefighting is hot, hazardous, and let's face it, grueling work. But believe it or not, the job today has become even more challenging as firefighters must deal with increased heat loads, toxic substances and other physical challenges that make structural firefighting one of the most demanding professions on the planet. So, needless to say, being well-trained, physically fit, and safely equipped can make all the difference in the world. Evolving Technology The fact is, as heat loads and toxicity exposure risks increase due to modern synthetic construction, the ways in which fires are fought are changing as well. These shifts, combined with the revolution that’s taking place in firefighter protection technology, have led to new and exciting designs in firefighter personal protective equipment (PPE) offerings. Technology is providing firefighters with respiratory protection “systems” is which respiratory protection itself is just one of many benefits Take the tried and true SCBA for instance. Since the invention of the first breathing apparatus in the late 1910s, their primary function has been air delivery. But today, technology is providing firefighters with respiratory protection “systems” is which respiratory protection itself is just one of many benefits. Revolution Of Life-Changing Technology Consider this: the effects of technology today impact virtually every aspect of modern life. And the same is true for the fire service, as software, thermal imaging, and wireless communications capabilities become more mainstream on the fireground. In response to these new capabilities, the consensus organizations responsible for PPE performance standards (i.e. NFPA and EN) have increased standards by mandating certain electronic components for each firefighter. But performance of these components can be limited by the fact that only so many “parts” can be attached to an SCBA, or because some capabilities are simply out of reach from a budget perspective. Over time, these limitations create long-term implications when it comes to SCBA choice, because the breathing apparatus purchased today may have to be in use for the next 15 years or more. So, what are firefighters to do? Firefighters should view their SCBA as the “foundation” of a safety system that equips firefighters with the many new safety capabilities that technology offers—now and in the future It’s More Than Air Delivery Missed opportunities for more timely safety improvements – which keep up with the pace of technology – are rooted in a false assumption that all SCBA are comprised of separate, mechanical components – and that the SCBA function is only about respiratory protection. But air-delivery is not the issue because every SCBA meets the standards, and every SCBA delivers air well. Further, looking at the SCBA merely as a separate component for air diminishes its potential to serve as a revolutionary safety technology “platform.” Safety As A System Firefighters need more than the minimum performance from breathing apparatus To keep pace with the rapid improvements in firefighter safety, firefighters need more than the minimum performance from breathing apparatus. Instead, they should view their SCBA as the “foundation” of a safety system that equips firefighters with the many new safety capabilities that technology offers—now and in the future. I’m talking specifically about platform-type products that can be easily updated with the latest technology, as soon as it becomes available, to help protect them when their lives are on the line. Key Questions To Consider When Looking For An SCBA Include: Does the SCBA have features that allow you to see, hear, and react quickly to changing situations? Can the SCBA sizing be customized to best fit each firefighter? How many total batteries are needed for the SCBA, and how does that affect long-term costs? How well does it integrate with other systems, such as communication devices, portable instruments, etc.? Does the SCBA provide you, your team, and incident command with critical information to make effective, life-saving decisions? Can the SCBA be programmed to meet your standard operating procedures, such as audible and visual alarms at 50% remaining pressure? Is the facepiece reducing or adding to overall SCBA cost and complexity? How easily can the SCBA be updated to meet changing standards? How easily can integrated accessories or features, such as thermal imaging, be added as they are developed in the future? At MSA, we develop technologically-advanced safety equipment designed to help meet today's changing fireground dynamics. We’re committed to setting the pace for safety with continuous improvements and innovations in PPE. For today. For tomorrow. For the future.
In order to recruit and retain, you must change your mindset to that of a business. While we continue to scratch our heads on how to recruit and retain members among the ranks of our departments, we might want to take a look at ourselves. Sometimes looking in the mirror is a hard thing to do, as it may give us a clear view of who and what we are as an organization. For years, the volunteer fire service has had to overcome many obstacles such as funding, a not-so-friendly environment or poor leadership, to name a few. They may even have had to re-create themselves. Business Mindset And Reputation Whether you are in a rural, suburban or urban area, what drives us? Is it pride? Is it fulfilling a need to belong? Ultimately, it is the end user, the customer – the resident, the taxpayer. In order to target new membership, we must be able to sell ourselves as a good, a service and a product. Business models have been around for years and, if followed, yield positive results We need to begin to think about running our volunteer organization like a business in order to be successful. Businesses that are successful have a great reputation. People want to work for them and they easily retain and recruit top talent. Business models have been around for years and, if followed, yield positive results. Building Community Of Employees Let’s take Google for an example, a company with more than 64,000 employees with growth to the tune of billions of dollars each year. When looking at Google’s performance, it raises the question: what is Google’s success secret? How can a company amass $9.7 billion in revenues mostly from advertising? How can they keep great help and recruit? The answer is its leadership being innovative, actively advertising, creating a unique and rewarding work environment as well as creating and executing their business model daily. A business that goes above and beyond by treating their employees great will in return get motivated and loyal employees. Google allows their employees flexibility to work on passion projects and tap into their creativity. Google also encourages its employees to become teachers and coach one another to help build a more creative, satisfied and intimate community of employees. One needs to make fire departments attractive to potential recruits, there are small moments of observation that are then used to make bigger decisions are called “thin slices” Positive First Impressions In this day and age, we need to be ahead of the curve. People want to be informed and they want it now. They want a quality product and will shop around until they find it. They also want to be part of something big. They want to be recognized. Remember the statement, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression”? Well, it was the tagline for a Head & Shoulders shampoo ad campaign in the 1980s. Are we continuing to make our fire department attractive to potential recruits? How do we expect to garner new membership if we don’t make that “first impression” a positive one? These small moments of observation that are then used to make bigger decisions are called “thin slices.” Potential candidates for membership are constantly assessing us, slice by slice, as “recruiters". Business Model For Your Demographic We need to create a business model and execute it at all times Is the fire station in good shape? Is it clean and orderly? Is the organization structured? Is the leadership strong and decisive? Or are there cliques and groups that work against the common goal or the command? These are easily seen and quickly discovered by potential candidates. They are looking to see what we are offering them: why should I risk my life, my health, my safety – what’s in it for me? How do we take all of these “thin slices,” package them together and make them attractive for potential recruits? We need to create a business model and execute it at all times. In order to sell, we need to advertise. In order to advertise, we need the leaders of our departments, the innovators and recruiters, to all come together and develop a business plan that works. It should work for your demographic. It should pour information to the masses. It should build on a reputation that you are a place that you’d want to work for! We need to begin to think about running our volunteer organization like a business in order to be successful Utilizing Current Volunteer Membership We need to begin to think about running our volunteer organization like a business in order to be successful. So, what does this mean for “my fire department”? Simply put, it means that you need to rely on the staff you have in place; lean on them and their expertise. Your current membership may hold the keys to your success. Develop a mission statement that is creative and energetic Canvass your current membership for professionals who could be utilized. You may have trained CPAs, human resource professionals, CEOs of corporations, advertising and marketing experts or veterans already inside your organization. They may remain quiet as they are unsure that they are needed to assist. Ask for the help and utilize them! Learning From Shortcomings Do not hesitate to implement them into your business plans. Help them look at how to target demographics in your area. Remember that great leadership will work to identify an individual’s strongest points and work to utilize them for maximum effectiveness. When you create a plan, be sure that you set obtainable goals. Develop a mission statement that is creative and energetic. Don’t eat the elephant in one bite: set a timeline in your plan. Meet often with your team, as you will learn more from your shortcomings than from your successes.
Drones can help save lives by delivering rescue equipment to the site of a medical emergency minutes faster than the arrival of emergency personnel. A recent trial of the technology in Ontario, Canada, demonstrated its value while expanding the capabilities to longer distances at even faster times. Automated external defibrillators The trial in the county of Renfrew used 4G LTE cellular connectivity to enable beyond-visual-line-of-site (BVLOS) drones to deliver automated external defibrillators (AEDs) to the scene of a cardiac arrest patient. The drones arrived more than 7 minutes before paramedic vehicles in each test flight. The trial in the county of Renfrew used 4G LTE cellular connectivity to enable BVLOS drones The American Heart Association estimates that more than 350,000 cardiac arrests occur outside hospitals every year; some 70% occur in homes. Drones can deliver AEDs to private, residential and rural locations where static AEDs are almost never used. They can deliver to balconies or upper levels in high rise buildings. Drones equipped with cameras can help 911 dispatchers assess a victim’s condition and support bystander CPR and AED application. Multiple studies have shown that AEDs can significantly increase chances of survival. LTE-connected drones The trial in Ontario adds new elements to the scenario, including a greatly expanded range of flight. The LTE-connected drones can fly to locations in a 10-mile operating radius. The project is among the first to be granted permission for a BVLOS flight, which could expand the reach of emergency services. The project offers the potential to deliver life-saving AEDs to patients up to 80 miles away. The Ontario trial demonstrates a marked improvement: A study in Sweden previously demonstrated a median response time of more than 16 minutes. The trial also suggests the possibility of obtaining permission to fly rescue drones beyond the operator line-of-sight in the United States. The LTE-connected drones can fly to locations in a 10-mile operating radius Emergency responders “Given the large area and varied terrain that the county encompasses, it is often difficult to get paramedics to patients in a timely fashion,” explained County of Renfrew Paramedic Chief Michael Nolan. “We have been successfully using drones to support our emergency responders for several years, but until now, the operators have had line-of-sight of the situation. We will now have further reach than ever.” For the Ontario trial, InDro Robotics supplied unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). Cradlepoint provided the NetCloud Service, including an on-board IoT router that enables LTE connectivity to control data and video between the vehicle and its pilot, using signals traveling over an LTE advanced cellular network. Ericsson provided 4G LTE equipment with carrier aggregation, cellular network design support, and drone research. Artificial Intelligence The drone flew over cellular to remote take-off points selected by GPS The drone flew over cellular to remote take-off points selected by GPS and landed successfully to deliver an AED to onsite researchers, who used the device to deliver required shocks to a mannequin. The drones could share images and video with operators and employ artificial intelligence to manage collision avoidance and other key functions. Looking ahead to additional deployment of drones to deliver AEDs and other equipment, the U.S. Fire Administration lists several implementation challenges: Where should drone launch sites be located? Where they can cover an entire region or where they are needed the most? How time-consuming and costly will drone maintenance be? How will recharge time or swap-out of AEDs factor into a system deployment? How long should the drone remain on the scene? Will drones be able to operate in poor weather such as icing, turbulence and extreme cold? Drone-delivered AEDs The County of Renfrew trial suggests new options for the technology. “What’s particularly innovative and exciting about this trial is the potential of drone-delivered AEDs to have a transformative impact on emergency care for patients suffering cardiac arrest,” said Nolan.
How can a building’s fire systems be integrated with access control and other security systems to ensure effective function of both? It can be a challenging and delicate endeavor. Integration of fire and security systems provides multiple benefits and some challenges to be addressed. It is useful to consider fire and security systems as part of the same overall mission to keep a building and its occupants safe, while also being attentive to the differing roles of the systems and how they can complement each other. integrating security and fire systems Integrating security and fire systems is becoming paramount to create improved efficiency “There’s a conflict between life safety and security systems,” says Karen Trigg, Business Development Manager, South East, for lock company Allegion (UK) Ltd. “We must secure buildings without impeding the flow of movement and hindering immediate escape should a fire incident occur. To do this, we must have a greater understanding of building requirements.” In today’s world, integrating security and fire systems is becoming paramount to create improved efficiency and effectiveness of a building’s safety technology — and this integration can provide monumental benefits, says Eric Widlitz, Vice President of Sales for North America for access control company Vanderbilt Industries. video management systems For example, in the event of a fire, an alarm from a fire system can trigger an access control system to release locks on fire escape doors, as well as generate muster reports to provide information on who is inside the building, says Widlitz. “Additionally, video management systems have the ability to provide access to real-time, remote video footage of the fire’s actual location, helping firefighters and other emergency personnel to assess the situation and respond with greater accuracy.” Many challenges and opportunities that facilities face when integrating systems relate to whether a building’s infrastructure is designed well enough to connect security and fire systems, says Julie Brown, Institutional Market Leader for Johnson Controls. By conducting a site assessment first, owners and managers can better determine where physical building updates may be needed. Integration Of Video Surveillance And Fire Alarms Adjusting design in this case can eventually help make the integration of video surveillance and fire alarms easier" For example, if video surveillance is obstructed in certain areas, owners need to identify if the cameras can be moved to a better location or if physical alterations to the building are needed. “Adjusting design in this case can eventually help make the integration of video surveillance and fire alarms easier,” says Brown. “In the event that a fire alarm sounds, owners can have peace of mind that their cameras have an unobstructed view and that they can be automatically alerted to provide visibility into the area affected and potential cause of the alarm. It is critical to occupant safety that building owners address any design hurdles. Budget is often an issue,” says Trigg. “Although a challenge, understanding budgets – not only for the system in place but also ongoing maintenance and upgrades – helps uncover the correct solution, showing that the ‘cheaper option’ may cost more in the long run for some.” thermal imaging cameras Joe Byron, Vice President for the Americas for MOBOTIX Corp, says integrating fire and security opens the door to a world of possibilities. “When specifically looking at industrial applications, these systems require an added layer of reliability in order to guarantee workplace safety and operational efficiency,” he says. This technology is tied into the fire-suppression system and can monitor the temperature of specified machines" Byron points to a specific deployment as an example: MOBOTIX’s work with KUHN RIKON, a world-renowned cookware manufacturer. In 2015, during mechanical pot polishing, an abrasive component spontaneously combusted causing a large-scale fire, leading to a dust explosion, says Byron. “While an unfortunate tragedy, this led to an opportunity to outfit the plant with thermal imaging cameras,” he adds. “This technology is tied into the fire-suppression system and can monitor the temperature of specified machines. With built-in logic, the cameras can alert technicians to heat warnings and, if not acted upon, can automatically shut-down the machinery and queue fire systems if required.” Fire And Security Systems A well-designed and integrated control room can help to organize, automate and streamline critical sensors by implementing workstations that transmit only the most critical information at any given time. “Additionally, operators are better equipped to make more educated and timely decision by leveraging audible alarms, visual LED indicators and video displays with built-in intelligence to change content based on triggers from third-party systems such as fire, building automation and access control,” says Dan Gundry, Director of National Control Room Sales for Vistacom. At the end of the day, fire and security systems are two elements of the same mission: To keep buildings and their occupants safe. However, the two systems often operate independently and may not be integrated. More integration offers benefits, but there are pitfalls to be avoided.
Among the tools of the fire service, some of the most powerful are hand-held devices. These technologies provide information to firefighters than can direct their approaches to emergency situations and safe lives. Today, more powerful devices are available in smaller, hand-held form, sometimes taking the place of much larger and more expensive devices. For example, previously the Los Angeles Fire Department carried just one large thermal imaging camera (TIC) that cost upwards of $10,000 on each fire engine. Structure Damage Evaluation Los Angeles is one of the municipal fire departments in the country to equip every on-duty firefighter with a hand-held TIC A new, smartphone-sized TIC from Seek Thermal, Santa Barbara, Calif., costs just $750 and now offers each firefighter the ability to perform faster search and rescues, execute a self-rescue if needed and locate smoldering hot spots. Los Angeles is one of the largest municipal fire departments in the country to equip every on-duty firefighter with a hand-held TIC. The purchase of a thousand TICs for the LAFD was made possible by the Los Angeles Fire Department Foundation through the support of individual donors and organizations such as the Wasserman Foundation and California Community Foundation. Hand-held TICs are becoming more and more popular. FLIR has unveiled the K1 handheld TIC that is more affordable for first responder officers and fire investigators. At $599, the K1 detects heat and provides visibility through smoke and in total darkness to enhance situational awareness for use in wildland fire control, search and rescue missions, structure damage evaluation and investigative work. FLIR has unveiled the K1 handheld TIC that is affordable for first responder officers and fire investigators Gas Leak Detector The K1 is powered by the FLIR Lepton thermal microcamera and uses MSX technology, which extracts high-contrast details from the images taken by an onboard visible light camera and superimposes them onto the thermal images. It simultaneously captures thermal and visible images of a scene and stores up to 10,000 image sets to create post-scene reports, analysis and evidence. A pistol grip design allows firefighters to view a scene from their line-of-sight for improved safety and situational awareness. A spot thermometer easily identifies unseen hot and cold spots for instant troubleshooting. New handheld devices in the fire service also include a gas leak detector and a combination device that is cloud-ready. The Ultra-Trac LZ-30 compact methane-specific leak detector from Sensit Technologies provides fast and accurate readings up to 100 feet away. The device uses TDLAS (tunable diode laser absorption spectroscopy) to provide instantaneous alerts to the presence of methane. Potentially Dangerous Situations Firefighters can conduct leak detection investigations themselves without the need for PPM detectors Operating at a distance, the LZ-30 eliminates the need for firefighters to access the gas plume directly and keeps them safe from potentially dangerous situations. They don’t have to climb to elevated areas or access fenced-in property or climb to elevated areas. Firefighters can conduct leak detection investigations themselves without the need for specialized PPM detectors – no need to wait for gas engineers. A simple interface provides user-friendly operation of the ergonomically designed instrument. Another wireless, handheld device includes thermal imaging, firefighter ranging, motion alarm and cloud technology with GPS. MSA Fire’s LUNAR is a small, wireless, cloud-ready device designed to provide higher levels of protection for firefighters through enhanced vision, improved situational awareness, and team connectivity. It is part of a suite of SMA products that, when used together provides a new platform for firefighter safety. MSA Fire’s LUNAR is a small, wireless, cloud-ready device designed to provide higher levels of protection for firefighters Better Situational Awareness It can be used as a stand-alone device or as part of an MSA self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) system. Thermal imaging increases visibility and improves situational awareness. Firefighter ranging combines direction and distance information to find separated teammates and decrease response time. A motion alarm sounds an alert if it does not detect a firefighter’s motion. Production of the device will begin in summer 2020. The ability to provide better situational awareness to firefighters in the palm of their hands can go a long way toward keeping firefighters safer. For example, LAFD says the thousand new TICs are a significant technology purchase and a critical component to their ‘Everyone Goes Home’ initiative. We often marvel at the powers of modern technology, and clearly those powers include saving lives.
Peterborough firefighters were buzzing to help a local project to enhance the environment for bees. Last week on Monday the firefighters from Green Watch at Dogsthorpe Fire Station attended an environmental initiative called Jimmy’s Bee’s at the newly built Connect Park in Millfield, Peterborough. Building Relationships With Local Residents The crew joined volunteers from the community to dig the grass up, sew and plant wildflower seeds in order to create a fantastic haven for bees. The project was commissioned by Channel 4 due to the third of Britain’s bee species declining since 1980. Planting the wildflower seeds allows bees and other insects to pollinate. Station Commander Matt Murdoch, the officer in charge of Dogsthorpe Fire Station, said: “A key part of being a firefighter is to be an active part of the local community. This allows us to ensure we are reaching the most vulnerable people to help keep them safe. Projects like this are a great way for our crews to pitch in and help the community, as well as make useful links and build relationships with local residents.”
The Secaucus Fire Department, located in Hudson County, New Jersey, placed a 28-foot Lake Assault Boats firefighting and rescue craft into service earlier this summer. The department’s firefighting and emergency response area includes a large portion of the Hackensack and Passaic Rivers (and their 28 bridges) that empty into Newark Bay and the Hudson River. Firefighting and recue craft “We’re located in a somewhat landlocked part of the river system, so our new fireboat has to be versatile and self-sustaining in case of a major incident,” said Fire Chief Carl Leppin, a 22-year veteran of the department and chief since 2014. “With help from Lake Assault Boats, we were able to customize the design to meet our needs. And their response to requests, and overall excellent customer service, are very important to us.” The Secaucus Fire Department is a member of the New York and New Jersey Regional Fireboat Taskforce The Secaucus Fire Department is a member of the New York and New Jersey Regional Fireboat Taskforce, comprised of 12 fire departments, including FDNY and the U.S. Coast Guard. This is the first fireboat taskforce of its kind in the country, and its combined team protects over 50 miles of New Jersey shoreline containing transportation hubs, transfer facilities, manufacturing plants, and other critical infrastructure. Critical emergency response “We’re thrilled to have one of our craft serving with the Secaucus Fire Department on such a critically important waterway,” said Chad DuMars, Lake Assault Boats vice president of operations. “This custom engineered vessel features fast response combined with capabilities to address a wide range of emergency scenarios.” The boat’s landing craft style hull sports a 63-inch hydraulically operated bow door (with an integrated ladder for diver re-entry) and flat tread areas for ATV deployment. The boat also features a clear opening dive door, swimmer’s grab rails, a davit crane, and a floating stokes basket for faster patient retrieval from the water. It is powered by twin 350 hp outboards that enable the boat to reach 50 miles per hour in open water conditions. infrared FLIR video camera The full-width, fully enclosed pilothouse is located mid-ship with deck space both on the fore and shaft. The vessel is equipped with Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRNE) positive pressure defense capabilities. The helm station carries controls for both fire pump and monitor controls, as well as two 12-inch touchscreens with GPS, Sonar with SideVu and DownVu, chart plotting, and a roof-mounted forward looking infrared (FLIR) video camera. The new craft has greatly improved our response capabilities in our protection area" The boat’s draft is just 28 inches when the motor is trimmed up and 32 inches when trimmed down, an important consideration for the department. “The department’s previous boat needed a full five feet of draft to safely maneuver, so our new boat can reach much closer to shore in low tide situations – and that’s a huge benefit. Our team loves the new craft,” Chief Leppin added. warning lights and fire pump For its firefighting operations, the boat is outfitted with a 1500 gpm fire pump powered by a dedicated 350 hp marinized V-8 engine. The craft features deck and bow mounted monitors, a foam system, and a five-inch large diameter hose discharge to support ground based firefighting operations. Other notable features include a full complement of LED floodlights, warning lights, scene lights, and remote-controlled spotlights. “We applied for a Federal FEMA Port Security Grant three years in a row, and this year we were approved,” added Chief Leppin. “We received help from the Mayor Gonnelli, the Town Council, Congressman Pascrel, and the U.S. Coast Guard throughout the grant process, and are grateful for their support. The new craft has greatly improved our response capabilities in our protection area.”
Tylosand is one of Sweden’s most popular beaches and during the summer there can be more than 40,000 visitors on the beach every day. They were the first beach in Sweden to have lifeguards patrolling its shores as early as 1958. While most visitors enjoy their summer on the beach, at times guests may find themselves in a difficult situation. The lifeguard’s on Tylosand beach operate on a completely voluntary basis, patrolling the beaches daily throughout Summer ensuring the public’s safety. Their aim is simple: to have zero drownings each year. Patrolling the beaches in tough conditions The lifeguards at Tylosand have six life-saving areas which are guarded by eight lifeguards and a life-saving manager The lifeguards at Tylosand patrol the beaches every day during summer whether it’s windy, rainy or sunny. Conditions often change during the day as the Swedish weather is quite unpredictable, and this can be when people get into difficulty. The lifeguards are often painters, fire fighters or students in their day-to-day lives and in return for volunteering their time in summer, they are provided food and accommodation for their efforts. The lifeguards at Tylosand have six life-saving areas which are simultaneously guarded by eight lifeguards and a life-saving manager (CH). In the lifeguard tower, they store healthcare equipment as well as other lifeguard equipment including binoculars, life jackets, shovels and a water tank. They also run the Life Saving School – the only school in Sweden that offers sea life rescue training. Easy to use radio equipment The communications system for lifeguards needs to be robust, reliable and secure, as these critical situations are a matter of life or death. A key factor for Tylosand lifeguards choosing a radio to use was ease of use; with lifeguards working only a few weeks a year, it is mandatory that the equipment implemented is easy to understand and use. The communication devices from Sepura provide the lifeguards with exactly that. The lifeguards have implemented Sepura SRG mobile terminals into their vehicles alongside STP9000 hand-portable radios The Tylosand lifeguards have implemented Sepura SRG mobile terminals into their vehicles alongside STP9000 hand-portable radios to deliver a robust, easy to use communications system for protecting the shores. The common user interface makes it easy to train new lifeguards and run shorter refresh training with returning lifeguards. Once users have learnt to use one Sepura radio, they can easily use other Sepura devices. Withstanding the challenging environment Sophia Arlsan, a lifeguard with Tylosand, said “The Sepura equipment has over the years proved that they withstand the tough environment with sand and salty waters in an excellent way. Last summer, 24 people were saved from rip currents and many more have been saved through the thousands of proactive discussions Tylosand lifesavers have had with beach visitors during their patrols.” Thanks to the Sepura radios delivered by Swedish Radio Supply, Tylosand Lifeguards are prepared for the next busy summer.
Motorola Solutions has completed the rollout of a new mobility managed service to Victoria Police, enabling increased situational awareness, safety and productivity on the front line. Officers across the state have received 9,398 mobile devices loaded with smart applications to give them a technological edge to protect community safety. Mobility managed service Motorola Solutions’ complete, end-to-end managed service enables Victoria Police members to focus on core policing activities rather than managing the technology. The service includes device management, support, repair and replacement services. Motorola Solutions’ end-to-end managed service enables Victoria Police members to focus on core policing activities The technology delivers immediate operational information to police in the field while helping to preserve mission-critical radio communications for when they are needed most. Connecting police and community With the rollout now complete, the solution enables Victoria Police to meet a major goal within its BlueConnect program, “Connecting police and the community through technology.” The holistic managed service will run for a minimum of five years with the potential to extend to 11 years and is valued at more than AUD $50 million. The solution includes a mobile application developed by Gridstone, the application development firm Motorola Solutions acquired in 2016. Data security Motorola Solutions Vice President and Managing Director, Steve Crutchfield said the rollout of the technology was completed two months ahead of schedule. “Victoria Police’s frontline officers now have access to data when and where they need it most and can manage their essential daily tasks more safely and efficiently,” Crutchfield said. Victoria Police are also deploying Motorola Solutions’ cloud-based Automatic Number Plate Recognition “For example, the application can provide vital information to officers before they enter a potentially dangerous situation. In the future, the application will also free up officers’ time, enabling them to complete crime reporting and administrative tasks in the field instead of back at the station,” he said. Cloud ANPR technology Victoria Police are also deploying Motorola Solutions’ high-resolution, cloud-based Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology for 220 of its highway patrol vehicles. Motorola Solutions also manages the networks that provide Victoria Police with mission-critical radio communications and narrowband data services.
Motorola Solutions’ local partner in Romania, ASTI International, has been selected in a tender by the General Inspectorate for the Romanian Police to equip its police officers with state-of-the art Terrestrial Trunked Radio (TETRA) two-way digital radios. TETRA digital two-way radios Motorola Solutions will deliver 10,000 TETRA digital two-way radios to the General Inspectorate of the Romanian Police. The 18-month framework contract covers the supply of 10,000 MTP3550 TETRA portable radios from Motorola Solutions. The MTP3000 series radios are packed with features that are essential for safeguarding frontline police officers and ensuring effective operations. The state-of-the-art digital radios provide significant improvements including coverage performance at extreme range and inside buildings, as well as enhanced connectivity and ruggedness that provide the best possible audio during mission-critical operations. In addition, the ‘man down’ functionality enhances officer safety by automatically alerting the command center when an officer is in need of help. Digital radio solutions Motorola Solutions has been a trusted partner for public safety organizations in Romania for over 25 years Motorola Solutions has been a trusted partner for public safety organizations in Romania for over 25 years, providing highly reliable and secure TETRA digital radio solutions. In times of growing crime rates and global threats, mission-critical law enforcement solutions that help first responders work effectively and efficiently are more important than ever before. “We are extremely proud that the Romanian Police continues to see us as a trusted partner, and we remain committed to help keep Romanians citizens and first responders safe,” said Michael Kaae, vice president for Nordics, Russia and Eastern Europe at Motorola Solutions. Mission-critical communications Motorola Solutions is a global renowned mission-critical communications solutions provider. Their technology platforms in communications, command center software, services and video security and analytics make cities safer and help communities and businesses thrive. At Motorola Solutions, advanced technologies are ushering in a new era in public safety and security.
During the Expo Seguridad 2019 (Safety Expo 2019), Motorola Solutions announced that its mission-critical device, LEX L11, has been certified by Altán Redes, the developer of the Red Compartida, to operate on the 4.5G-LTE broadband network that already covers more than 40 million people in 14 cities. LEX L11 mission-critical device The LEX L11 is a rugged and durable mission-critical LTE-device created for public safety users who need efficient, instant and secure communications. It enables officers to communicate clearly and easily thanks to its dedicated push-to-talk button, advanced audio features, such as noise cancellation and feedback suppression. Multiple levels of security protect the mission critical device, data, and communications Multiple levels of security protect the mission critical device, data, and communications. These include: a secure boot, integrity monitoring, malware blocking (malicious software), and policy based controls. The LEX L11 also provides support for secure device management based on industry standards, with over-the-air monitoring and control capability including: remote configuration, remote firmware and software upgrades, application whitelisting and over-the-air wipe and lock capability. WAVE PTX for Public Safety In addition, before the end of 2019, WAVE PTX for Public Safety will be a first for the Mexican market, and will allow interoperability with P25 and all Motorola Solutions' systems, as well as with the external systems that public safety agencies already have. WAVE PTX, which will be offered as a service, is the ideal application for public safety users who use the LEX platform, as both solutions have been designed with specific features, such as easy access and dedicated emergency and push-to-talk buttons, to meet the needs of public safety users, namely, to respond effectively and immediately to emergencies. Altán Redes, the operator of this innovative 4.5G LTE shared broadband network in Mexico, provides Motorola Solutions with the opportunity to deliver comprehensive and innovative security solutions in order to bring about a positive change in public safety, in line with the company’s interest in contributing to building safer cities. Enhanced public safety The LEX L11, and its value proposition with WAVE PTX, will enable public safety officers to experience broadband" “This certification is a major step in our firm commitment to Mexico and our interest in establishing ourselves as a strategic partner of the public safety forces, bringing our latest innovations to the country. The LEX L11, and its value proposition with WAVE PTX, will enable public safety officers to experience the benefits of broadband for instant, reliable and interoperable communication. This is just the beginning, we will continue bringing innovation to make Mexico a more connected, safer and smarter place,” said Janet Fernandez, vice president for North of Latin America at Motorola Solutions. With the WAVE PTX instant communication service for Public Safety and the LEX L11 device, as well as its international standards systems and portfolio of mission-critical, specialized solutions, Motorola Solutions seeks to continue increasing its cooperation, keeping everyone connected with optimized interoperability between agencies, systems and databases, enhancing situational awareness and transforming voice, video and data into real-time intelligence for a more effective response in emergency situations.