With Minor Exceptions, System Worked - @ JEMS.com

With Minor Exceptions, System Worked


Christopher LeePaul Lewis | | Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Minnesota officials said the emergency response to the deadly failure of a major bridge in Minneapolis went smoothly with the exception of some communications glitches, in an event that is being viewed as a good test of a large regional city's ability to respond to terrorist attack or natural disaster.

The Minneapolis police and fire chiefs and the Hennepin County sheriff jointly led rescue and recovery efforts after the 40-year-old Interstate 35W bridge plunged into the Mississippi River, killing at least four and injuring 79. The sheriff's office organized operations in the water while the fire department managed those on the ground and police officials secured the scene, officials said.

It was all part of a unified command set up according to the principles of the National Incident Management System, a federally devised plan to help governmental entities work together after terrorist attacks or natural catastrophes.

"It keeps us all on the same sheet of music," said David Berrisford, state incident manager for Minnesota's Homeland Security and Emergency Management division.

The response involved at least 75 state, local and federal agencies linked through a radio system that has been enhanced with some of the $170 million in federal homeland security grants the state has received since 2002, officials said.

Although the system -- rated among the nation's best this year by the Department of Homeland Security -- generally worked well, officials said, there were reports of it jamming at moments of peak use.

Read Full Story

Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: Communications and Dispatch, Operations and Protcols

What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS

Get JEMS in Your Inbox


Fire EMS Blogs

Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts


EMS Airway Clinic

Innovation & Advancement

This is the seventh year of the EMS 10 Innovators in EMS program, jointly sponsored by Physio-Control and JEMS.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Press Conference, East Village Explosion and Collapse

Fire is contained to four buildings; 12 people have been injured.
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

D.C. Mayor Adds Ambulances to Peak Demand Period

10 additional ambulances will be on the streets from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

Utah Commission Privatizes Ambulance Service

Mayors in Iron County loose management fight.
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

Ambulance Delay Raises Concerns over Response Times

Officers give up after waiting 20 minutes for an ambulance.
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

Patient Carry during Snowstorm

Firefighters, medics and officers lend a hand in Halifax.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Terror Attack in Tunisia

19 people killed outside of a museum.
More >