New York City Organizes for Disaster
The New York Fire Department has developed a mutual aid program with various city, public and private agencies in order to better cope with a major disaster. Details were worked out by departmental officers under the direction of Fire Commissioner Edward F. Cavanagh, Jr.
“In the event of a disaster beyond the control of the normal efforts of the department,” said the commissioner, “we have been assured of aid in manpower and equipment by public utility corporations, industrial concerns, city agencies, the Port of New York Authority, the New York Transit Authority, the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard and others.
“This mutual aid program covers each of the five boroughs separately as well as the city at large,” said the commissioner. “Sources where manpower and equipment are available are listed alphabetically by boroughs. Alongside each listing is its telephone number.”
Some idea of the variety of facilities made available to the department under the assistance program may be realized from the following index for each of the boroughs: Acetylene and oxygen burning equipment, air compressors and air tools, boats, bulldozers, cranes, ditch-digging machines, divers, eductors, foam supplies, fork lifts and hi-los, helicopters, lighting equipment, pumps and pumpers for fire duty, shorers and bracing materials, sky trucks or giraffes, snow plows, trailers, flushing machines to carry water, welding trucks and wreckers.
Printed copies of the inventories are in possession of Commissioner Cavanagh, all deputy fire commissioners, the chief of department, all assistant chiefs, deputy chiefs in charge and in each of the five central offices of the Bureau of Communications.
This mutual aid program is separate and apart from agreements of mutual assistance which have been in effect between the city and its neighboring county of Westchester for many years.