Whom Do You Call on in a Disaster: Your Local USAR Team or Mutual Aid?

One of the basic rules of the fire service for most of us is "to prepare for the usual and have contingencies for the unusual." I emphasized "most of us" because there are some departments that, for whatever reason, have the resources to fund and prepare for the most unusual event that could happen in their community. Disaster can strike anywhere at any time. The good news about disasters is their frequency rate. The bad news is their diversity. What may be a disaster in your community might be an everyday occurrence somewhere else. I remember Chief Alan Brunacini telling his students in a class in Michigan some years ago, "In Phoenix, if it gets below 45°, they declare a state of eme...

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