Firefighting Tech Roundup: Cardiac Arrest Simulator, Wildfire Risk, and More

Metronic's online simulator prepares bystander to assist SCA victims

First responders/EMS agencies can help community residents build awareness of the seriousness of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) and encourage them to assist the patient with the online, interactive tool from the Metronic Foundation's HeartRescue Project.

The "Save-a-Life Simulator" places the viewer in a shopping mall where shoppers witness a young man fall down; actually, he was stricken with SCA. The "bystanders" are presented with the options of assisting the man or ignoring him.  The simulator then instructs the viewer to call 911, how to administer chest compressions, and to send someone to obtain the mall's automatic external defibrillator (AED). The AED then guides the person giving assistance with directions for using the AED.

The HeartRescue Project also has distributed its "All Alone" public service announcement nationwide. It directs viewers to the Web site and to access the online learning tool. The "message" of the Project is: Call 911, start chest compressions immediately, and use an AED if one is available.

SCA is a leading cause of death in the United States, and nearly 400,000 Americans suffer SCA each year, according to the American Heart Association. Research has shown that when bystanders intervene, survival rates rise.

The Project employs some of the country's leading emergency and resuscitation experts. It seeks to expand successful city and county SCA response programs to statewide levels and to improve out-of-hospital cardiac arrest survival rates by at least 50 percent over five years in the geographies funded by the program. For additional information, consult the following:

Medtronic, Inc. ( is headquartered in Minneapolis.


"Almost all of North America and most of Europe is projected to see a jump in the frequency of wildfire by the end of the century, primarily because of increasing temperature trends," say researchers at the University of California (UC), Berkeley, in collaboration with an international team of scientists.

"The projections emphasize how important it is for experts in conservation and urban development to include fire in long-term planning and risk analysis," explains Max Moritz, a fire specialist in UC Cooperative Extension and based at UC Berkeley's college of Natural Resources.

The study was published June 12 in Ecosphere, the peer-reviewed journal of the Ecological Society of America.

Sixteen climate change models were used to generate "one of the most comprehensive projections to date of how climate change might affect global fire patterns."

The Western United States shows a high level of agreement in climate models in the near term and the long term, resulting in a stronger conclusion that those regions should brace themselves for more fire.

Moritz notes that "our ability to model fire activity is improving, but a more basic challenge is learning to coexist with fire itself." The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, the U.S. Forest Service, the National Science Foundation, and the Nature Conservancy helped to support this study. For additional information, contact Moritz, UC Berkeley, (510) 642-7329 or Katharine Hayhoe, Texas Tech University, (806) 742-0015.


Seattle (WA) Fire Department (SFD) vehicles and teams are now equipped with wireless technology that helps to improve responses en route and on scene. With the Motion Technology onBoard Mobile Networking System, enables the department to leverage new voice, video, and wireless data initiatives by providing secure, seamless fast switching in real time between multiple networks. SFD's Leonard Roberts, IT director, explains: "We have deployed In Motion Technology's mobile networking system to improve patient care and response times as part of our commitment to provide the citizens of Seattle with the best emergency and medical services possible."

The system provides a secure, manageable, end-to-end communications system to extend the enterprise network to the vehicle fleet:

  • Seattle Fire and EMS vehicles become mobile wireless hot spots or wireless access points (WAP), connecting all wired and wireless devices in and around the vehicle over any wireless network; multiple broadband networks can be used.
  • The system allows Operations to manage and monitor the health of the fire fleet including remote configuration, network coverage, vehicle diagnostic data, and fleet-wide software updates and maintenance.
  • A mobile optimized VPN server provides secure IP mobility and sub-second switching in a multinetwork environment designed to provide continuous connections and enable the use of real-time applications as vehicles roam between multiple wireless networks.

Additional information is available from Amanda Keating (202) 441-5322.


GelTech Solutions, Inc., creators of FireIce, has partnered with The Dip Source, a division of Special Operations Group Inc., a Cody, Wyoming, corporation that manufactures and fabricates equipment focusing on all-risks response.

Under the arrangement, GelTech will supply its patent-pending fire suppressant FireIce and the Special Operations Group will provide additional mobile mixing, base equipment and personnel to support aerial firefighting efforts in response to orders from the U.S. Forest Service and other federal and state agencies responsible for protecting federal and state lands. Special Operations Group has more than $44 million of equipment and more than 35 years of government contracting experience for ground and aerial wildfire operations with state and federal agencies.

Under the partnership, the companies can provide wildfire-fighting equipment and suppressant or offer a full turnkey solution for federal and state agencies that include pilot-ready rooms, mobile sleepers, and mobile incident command trailers.

Additional information is available at

If you have a product or a service you would like considered for this column, please contact

MARY JANE DITTMAR is senior associate editor of Fire Engineering and conference manager of FDIC. Before joining the magazine in January 1991, she served as editor of a trade magazine in the health/nutrition market and held various positions in the educational and medical advertising fields. She has a bachelor's degree in English/journalism and a master's degree in communication arts.


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