Commentary, Operations

‘Nightwatch: First Responders’ Short-Form Series to Premiere This Week

Beginning August 2nd on A&E, two of the stars of A&E’s hit series Nightwatch, Dan Flynn and Titus Tero, are stepping out of their ambulance and crisscrossing the country to shadow first responders of all types.

Each episode of the short-form series NIGHTWATCH PRESENTS: FIRST RESPONDERS will feature the famous New Orleans EMS duo answering the invitation of highly-specialized first responder units, getting to know the responders and engaging in live rescue drills.

Whether rushing into a burning structure in the woods of Slidell, Louisiana, pulling a victim from the raging currents of the Mississippi in Baton Rouge, repelling a sheer cliff wall on the banks of the Colorado River, or braving the whitewater of a flash flood extrication in Austin, America’s popular EMS duo favorite EMTs are making themselves guinea pigs for each unbelievable mission.

The dynamic duo will highlight the many different facets of first response and the training and skill required at each department. The drama is balanced by Dan and Titus’ signature humor, but make no mistake, each scenario will show the public the intense risks and inherent danger first responders face on a daily basis.

I spent time with Dan and Titus recently to discuss the new short-form series, its concept and its focus.

A.J.: Why are you two so excited?

Dan &Titus: We’re excited to step outside the confines and comfort zone of our ambulance, immerse ourselves in what other first responders and specialty teams do, give them proper credit for what they do and have the viewing audience gain an appreciation for the work of all first responders.

A.J.: Whose idea was it for the show concept and format?

Dan Flynn – I had the idea initially and shared my thoughts with Titus. He liked the idea so we moved forward with the concept – “Come out and see what we do”

Titus Tero – We collaborated.  Dan then discussed the concept with 44 Blue and A&E.  We also floated the idea on Twitter and the response to the concept was amazing.

A.J.: Where have you been and what has the experience been like?

Dan: I love my job at New Orleans EMS and as a nurse and thought I knew a lot, but our experience outside the “EMS space” has been an eye opener for me and I’m sure it will be for the public. We’ve been to fire agencies, Sheriff Departments, EMS specialty units – you name it.

Titus: I’ve been doing EMS for 12 years and had no idea what other first responders and specialty teams did to prepare and execute their skills.

A.J.: How have you been able to adjust your work schedules to get all this done and have your families, employers and co-workers been supportive?

Dan: My family knows how passionate I am about the first responder profession, so they have been very supportive. Our employers have been great in working with us to rearrange our schedules. The hospital I work for, Touro Infirmary, has been very understanding and excited to have me involved in this show which will profile all the heroes in the first responder community.

Titus: I am a full-time husband and father first and make every attempt to balance those responsibilities with my job and this new, exciting A&E short-form series.

A.J.: What has been the most rewarding aspect of your involvement in this new adventure and opportunity to showcase the many different dedicated and specially trained responders you have encountered in the diverse emergency response community?

Titus: There’s never been a platform to showcase what all first responders do. We hope the public not only enjoys the show but also gains an appreciation of the training we all go through and how dedicated all first responders are to their specific areas of our profession.

Dan: We have had Navy Seals train with us at New Orleans EMS, but we never got the chance to see how they and other first responders prepare for their difficult roles.  The goal of this new series is to show this – from the front seat of a wrecked vehicle to the top of a cliff.