Firefighting, Fireground Management, Hazmat

Rapid Damage Assessment for Large-Scale Emergencies

Issue 4 and Volume 167.

BY SID NEWBY The fire service traditionally has been the lead local government agency responsible for rapidly assessing damage and providing assistance in the areas of life safety, incident stabilization, and property conservation after a disaster.1 Disasters in the United States in recent decades from natural sources, industrial and technological sources, and deliberate sources such as terrorism have all increased, and no reduction is in sight. We as a nation must be proactive rather than reactive to disaster management.2 Recent events like Hurricane Irene, the Joplin Tornado, the Japan earthquake, and the Spring 2011 tornado outbreak that occurred in the southern United States raise for emergency responders the question, How do we provide the quickest and most efficient care and mitigation of hazards? To answer this question, you must determine what area of your response area is affected, whether your members in that area were injured, and the status of…

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