Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Rare event

As if February 29th isn't a rare enough event, February 28th didn't want to be left out, so we were treated to a spring thunderstorm last night. Tonja and I sat in the darkened front room and watched the show. It even smelled like a spring thunderstorm. Neither of us could remember such a thing in February in Nebraska.

Another rare event occurred yesterday morning, when the command staffs of both the Lincoln Police Department and Lincoln Fire & Rescue met together. For a couple of hours, the group strategized about how we can do a better job of ensuring that we work well together at the scenes of incidents that both organizations are involved in, such as injury crash scenes, working fires, certain medical emergencies and violent crimes.

LF&R Battalion Chief Leo Benes and LPD Captain Jim Davidsaver facilitated. I had appointed them as a committee of two a couple months ago to undertake this task. It was a productive meeting, and we left with a plan consisting of specific action steps for better cross training, enhanced radio communication, incident debriefings, and functional exercising. I took a photo of the dry erase board where the action steps and assignments were listed with my phone, and emailed that photo to the police and fire chiefs. Sort of a low-tech version of these gizmos.

More than anything, though, I think we all came away from this meeting committed to making a concerted effort to ensure that the police and fire incident commanders at the scene of events are establishing unified command, and engaging in face-to-face communication whenever feasible.

Since I was appointed public safety director last summer, Chief Peschong, Chief Huff, Communications Coordinator Julie Righter and I have been meeting together every Friday morning to discuss our mutual issues and to effect coordination. All of us have been on the job since the mid 1970's, and none of us ever recall the police and fire command staffs meeting jointly. It was about as rare as a February thunderstorm in Lincoln.


H said...

One can only hope for an actual, provable outcome. Both departments are well known for their ability to hold a meeting. Those meetings frequently create actual, provable change.

But let's be innovative and have it be a positive change. THAT would be as rare as a thunderstorm in February.

Anonymous said...

A great start would be if LFR wouldn't block 3 lanes of traffic with all of the trucks they bring to an injury accident.

Dave said...

Well 8:14 I imagine LFR blocks three lanes of traffic to protect their crews from getting clobbered by rubber-neckers. As I say this, I just thought of this article which I read today, that demonstrates why LFR and law enforcement take so many lanes at a traffic accident.

Anonymous said...

Today my family will be celebrating our Mothers 21st Birthday. I told her I would pay for her first beer but she declined the offer.

Gun Nut

Pastor Fuller said...

Director, I applaud these efforts of unity and a joint effort to improve the already great services afforded to our community by LFR/LPD. Thanks for facilitating!

Steve said...


Yes; how are we supposed to get a good view of the mangled, bleeding to death bodies of the victims with all those trucks in the way?

Anonymous said...

We don't want to keep Steve from seeing the bodies. He might go get his shotgun and take matters into his own hands.