KSFFA Presidents Article – March 2017

Good day Kansas Fire Service. I will not lie, this has been a rather busy couple of months. Hats off to all of you for a job well done and the commitment you have shown to your communities. As I write this, fires burn in 20 plus counties in our state and have consumed over 600 square miles of ground in just the past few days. Once again, your training and commitment has proven its value to our state.

Its times like this that show the true nature of the fire service. Calls for assistance have come from one end of the state to the other. Firefighters across the state have shown their skill and courage by containing and extinguishing these fires. Department leaders have shown their management abilities by weighing out the needs of their community with the needs of others across the state. Our helping nature has allowed us to find those needed assets and staffing to send to help our neighboring communities.

As we see more and more of these large types of incidents, we in the fire service need to look at how we deploy and manage resources at that higher level. We are all used to some type of in county or across county mutual aid agreement. Once in a while we may have even responded two or three counties away. But this year has shown that there is a need for looking at the bigger picture of what do we do with statewide mutual aid and what does it really mean? We have some competing incident command and resource management systems in the state that work in different methods and often times cause confusion in requesting and sending resources. I will be asking that the leadership in the fire service across Kansas request of the State, that the fire working group be re activated to look at this matter under the CEPR and in conjunction with the Office of the State Fire Marshal and get a system selected once and for all. Let’s not wait until we have another year such as this and find shortcomings in resource allocations and requesting.

As I promised to be brief I will close with this thought on our current fire status in the state. Large fires are burning. Homes are being lost, lives are being lost, livestock are being lost, and the number of acres burned are being tallied. However when it is all said and done, the count of homes saved, livestock saved, and human lives saved will likely not be measured. That un-recorded value though, is what the Kansas Fire Service is all about. We quietly do our jobs and fight to save those things are not recorded by the rest of the population. We all know those numbers though and that is what is most important. We know our efforts have a huge impact. Know that your efforts are greatly appreciated and this Association will stand with you to make those efforts know to as many people as possible. Thank you all and stay safe out there my brothers and sisters.

 

Posted by Gwen Dorr Romine, KSFFA Webmaster
http://www.ksffa.com
KSFFA’s Fire News Blog Home Page

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