Archive for April, 2012

EMS handbook released #OKfire

April 25, 2012

Emmitsburg, MD. – The Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Fire Administration (USFA), in partnership with the DHS Office of Health Affairs (OHA), has released a handbook for physician medical directors of local departments and agencies who are involved in Emergency Medical Services (EMS) response. The Handbook for EMS Medical Directors (PDF, 2.5 Mb) covers topics ranging fromoccupational health and safety to liability issues.

“This handbook provides an overview of key roles and responsibilities to assist current and prospective medical directors in performing their important missions,” said U.S. Fire Administrator Ernest Mitchell.

The Handbook for EMS Medical Directors was developed by the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) as part of a cooperative agreement with the DHS OHA and USFA. Many national level EMS and fire organizations also contributed to the handbook’s development.
“EMS medical directors are an essential component in local-level emergency response,” said Dr. Alexander G. Garza, DHS Assistant Secretary for Health Affairs and Chief Medical Officer. “Their criticaloversight and medical direction ensure that patients receive effective emergency medical care – a vital part of this nation’s homeland security.”

In addition to providing medical oversight and direction, EMS medical directors support EMS personnel and other first responders through training, protocol development, and resource deployment advice.

“The IAFC and its EMS Section were pleased to work in partnership with the USFA and DHS OHA on this project to support medical directors who are crucial to the effective delivery of EMS throughout this country,” said IAFC President and Chief Al H. Gillespie.

Further information on USFA’s EMS research initiatives may be found on the USFA website.

Funds for #OKfire and EMS programs

April 23, 2012

Emmitsburg, MD. – The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA), supported by the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Office of Health Affairs (OHA), and in partnership with the International Fire Services Training Association (IFSTA), announce the revision and release of Funding Alternatives for Emergency Medical and Fire Services (PDF, 3.7 Mb). The latest edition provides the most up to date information regarding funding for local level Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and fire departments.  The document includes sources of federal funding as well as other new and innovative funding sources not discussed in previous editions.

“Adequate funding is one of the most challenging issues facing EMS and fire departments today,” said U.S. Fire Administrator Ernest Mitchell. “This document provides valuable information for local-level departments facing financial challenges.”

A key part of the project initiative was an enhanced study of critical funding issues for both fire and non-fire service based EMS systems.

“OHA is pleased to provide guidance on this important topic,” said Dr. Alexander G. Garza, DHS Assistant Secretary for OHA and Chief Medical Officer.  “Funding is critical for the successful operation of EMS response agencies – key to this nation’s homeland security.”

EMS and fire departments require funding for expenses such as equipment, training, and salaries in order to provide necessary protection to their respective communities. However, with tighter budgets, less government subsidies, and fewer donations, it is becoming increasingly more difficult for fire and emergency services departments to meet greater and more complex demands for its services.
“IFSTA was proud to work with USFA and OHA to provide this much needed information,” said Mike Wieder, IFSTA Executive Director.

Further information on USFA’s EMS research initiatives may be found on the USFA website.

If you buy one, learn how to use it.

April 19, 2012
If you buy a generator, please learn how to use it.
Generator safety is  paramount.  According to the United States Fire Academy, these devices pose a fire, electrical, and carbon monoxide hazard.
To overcome these hazards, one should read the instruction manual for the unit.  
To reduce carbon monoxide risks, one should “Always use generators outdoors, away from doors, windows and vents.”
To reduce the fire hazard, one should “Always store fuel outside of living areas in properly labeled, nonglass containers.”
To reduce shock hazards, one should “NEVER plug the generator into a wall outlet. This practice, known as backfeeding, can cause an electrocution risk to utility workers and others served by the same utility transformer.” 

By following these and other tips from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, one can safely enjoy using a generator, rather than becoming a statistic such as this report from Wichita Falls.

Save Food During a Power Outage – wikiHow

April 12, 2012

Save Food During a Power Outage – wikiHow

Has your power gone out?

Click the link to read how to use your food during and after the event.

Spring rains bring greater flood chances

April 5, 2012

Are you flood aware?  Do you have flood insurance?  Does your homeowners include flood insurance?

Those are important questions for you since spring rains bring higher than normal chances for flooding.

According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency:

To prepare for a flood, you should:
  • Build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
  • Avoid building in a floodplain unless you elevate and reinforce your home.
  • Elevate the furnace, water heater and electric panel in your home if you live in an area that has a high flood risk.
  • Consider installing “check valves” to prevent flood water from backing up into the drains of your home.
  • If feasible, construct barriers to stop floodwater from entering the building and seal walls in basements with waterproofing compounds.

Do you know who your flood plain manager is in your City or County?

Have you checked with your insurance agent about your flood coverage?

Floods | Ready.gov:

Oklahoma Climate Data – April

April 1, 2012

Shown as April 2012
Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
1 T Avgs: 72/42
Sig Prcp Freq: 9%
Extremes:
High T 98 (1946)
Low T 27* (1948)
Precip 0.98 (2000)
2 T Avgs: 74/44
Sig Prcp Freq: 10%
Extremes:
High T 91 (1913)
Low T 22 (1936)
Precip 1.13 (1919)
3 T Avgs: 74/44
Sig Prcp Freq: 12%
Extremes:
High T 97 (1950)
Low T 23* (1936)
Precip 1.22 (1957)
4 T Avgs: 72/43
Sig Prcp Freq: 3%
Extremes:
High T 95 (1943)
Low T 26 (1920)
Precip 0.66 (1997)
5 T Avgs: 73/43
Sig Prcp Freq: 15%
Extremes:
High T 94 (1954)
Low T 26* (1920)
Precip 1.51 (1921)
6 T Avgs: 74/43
Sig Prcp Freq: 11%
Extremes:
High T 99 (1954)
Low T 23 (1971)
Precip 0.71 (1940)
Snow trace (1939)
7 T Avgs: 75/44
Sig Prcp Freq: 9%
Extremes:
High T 96 (1972)
Low T 23 (2009)
Precip 1.12 (1915)
8 T Avgs: 73/44
Sig Prcp Freq: 10%
Extremes:
High T 99 (1963)
Low T 25 (1938)
Precip 1.50 (1942)
Snow 6.0 (1938)
9 T Avgs: 73/43
Sig Prcp Freq: 10%
Extremes:
High T 93 (1963)
Low T 24 (2003)
Precip 1.45 (1942)
10 T Avgs: 73/45
Sig Prcp Freq: 11%
Extremes:
High T 98 (1963)
Low T 26 (1973)
Precip 2.14 (2008)
11 T Avgs: 74/45
Sig Prcp Freq: 15%
Extremes:
High T 99 (1972)
Low T 27 (1989)
Precip 2.22 (1994)
12 T Avgs: 73/45
Sig Prcp Freq: 11%
Extremes:
High T 105 (1972)
Low T 26* (1940)
Precip 0.96 (1967)
Snow trace (1940)
13 T Avgs: 75/45
Sig Prcp Freq: 18%
Extremes:
High T 98 (1936)
Low T 25 (1957)
Precip 0.60 (1973)
14 T Avgs: 76/46
Sig Prcp Freq: 12%
Extremes:
High T 96 (1936)
Low T 29 (1980)
Precip 2.26 (1916)
15 T Avgs: 77/47
Sig Prcp Freq: 11%
Extremes:
High T 95* (1955)
Low T 27* (1928)
Precip 1.96 (1945)
16 T Avgs: 79/47
Sig Prcp Freq: 12%
Extremes:
High T 100 (2006)
Low T 34* (1945)
Precip 1.50 (1976)
17 T Avgs: 79/49
Sig Prcp Freq: 12%
Extremes:
High T 101 (1955)
Low T 28 (1921)
Precip 2.34 (1995)
18 T Avgs: 78/50
Sig Prcp Freq: 18%
Extremes:
High T 101* (1925)
Low T 31 (1921)
Precip 2.20 (1917)
19 T Avgs: 78/50
Sig Prcp Freq: 16%
Extremes:
High T 95 (1987)
Low T 32* (1939)
Precip 1.91 (2003)
20 T Avgs: 78/49
Sig Prcp Freq: 12%
Extremes:
High T 99 (1925)
Low T 32 (1953)
Precip 1.61 (1952)
21 T Avgs: 78/50
Sig Prcp Freq: 14%
Extremes:
High T 97* (1925)
Low T 34 (1918)
Precip 1.82 (1957)
22 T Avgs: 79/51
Sig Prcp Freq: 14%
Extremes:
High T 98 (1955)
Low T 31 (1931)
Precip 1.68 (1952)
23 T Avgs: 79/52
Sig Prcp Freq: 12%
Extremes:
High T 101 (1989)
Low T 34 (1996)
Precip 1.05 (1957)
24 T Avgs: 79/51
Sig Prcp Freq: 15%
Extremes:
High T 98 (1996)
Low T 34 (1968)
Precip 2.14 (1925)
25 T Avgs: 79/51
Sig Prcp Freq: 16%
Extremes:
High T 96* (1967)
Low T 39 (1995)
Precip 1.93 (1997)
26 T Avgs: 78/51
Sig Prcp Freq: 16%
Extremes:
High T 95* (1956)
Low T 38 (1945)
Precip 1.63 (1928)
27 T Avgs: 78/51
Sig Prcp Freq: 12%
Extremes:
High T 96 (1955)
Low T 35 (1920)
Precip 1.50 (1985)
28 T Avgs: 78/50
Sig Prcp Freq: 17%
Extremes:
High T 94 (1927)
Low T 36 (2008)
Precip 2.30 (1940)
29 T Avgs: 77/52
Sig Prcp Freq: 20%
Extremes:
High T 98 (1936)
Low T 39 (1968)
Precip 4.06 (2009)
30 T Avgs: 78/52
Sig Prcp Freq: 21%
Extremes:
High T 95 (1947)
Low T 36* (1984)
Precip 1.35 (1974)
Periods of Record
Temps #1904-2010
Precip #1904-2010
Snow #1904-2010
# – large gaps in record
Key
* – Record since tied
Highlight = Apr record
All Temps in deg F
All Precip in inches
Sig Prcp Freq = Pct of
days with >= 0.1″ precip
Apr. Averages
High Temp 77 F
Low Temp 48 F
Avg Temp 62 F
Precip 2.38
Snow 0.1