The following is a Press Release from the La Paz County Sheriff’s Department.
On Saturday, February 5, 2011, not only did the BITD Bluewater/Parker 425 occur, but a National Emergency Communications Plan Exercise took place in conjunction with the Off-Road Race. This exercise was to test La Paz County/Colorado River Indian Tribes ability of emergency responders to exchange information as authorized to complete their missions. Response level emergency communications is defined as the capacity of individuals with primary operational leadership responsibility to manage resources and make timely decisions during an incident involving mutilple agencies.
An Incident Command Post was set up at the Parker Fire Department, and the excercise started at 6:00 AM, Saturday morning. Agencies involved were the La Paz County Sheriff’s Office, Parker Police Department, C.R.I.T. Police Department, Arizona Department of Public Safety, Bureau of Land Management, River Medical Ambulance, Parker Fire Department, Buckskin Fire Department, C.R.I.T. Fire Department, C.R.I.T. EPO, C.R.I.T. Emergency Management, Motorsport Safety Solutions and Best In the Desert Racing Association.
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Through a Unified Command using the Incident Command System (ICS) Incident Commander Lt. Curt Bagby (LPCSO), and Deputy Commander Chief Chris Chambers (BFD)worked to endure spectator and constestant safety by providing a coordinated effort for traffic/crowd control and medical response to ensure a safe and successful BITD Bluewater/Parker 425.
Evaluators from the Arizona Government Information and Technology Administration observed all the activities of the Command Post and Field Teams during the operational period which lasted to approximatley 7:00 PM. Evaluators reviewed common policies and procedures, responders roles and responsibilities, along with quality and continuity of the operation.
Command Post staff included, Sgt. Bill Poindexter (LPCSO), Sgt. Chad Hinderliter (AZDPS), VI Hillman (BLM), Moriah Solano (CRIT), Alan Condit (BITD), Jim Wolfe (RMI), Cmdr. Don Davis (LPCSO), Sgt. Richard Epps (LPCSO) Crystel Merritt (LPCSO), Sgt. Clay Romo (PPD), Claudia Seechoma (LPCSO) Sgt. Donald Schlecht (LPCSO), Karl Hartmetz (LPCSO Communications), Roger Interliccia (CRIT Emergency Management) Brad Shelton (RMI),Jim Wolfe (RMI) Jeff Rather (PFD), Sgt. John Quandel (LPCSO), Mike Browning (Mohave County ADEM T.O.A.D.)and many thanks to the Officers, Deputies and BLM Rangers who worked on the Field Teams.
Sucessfully completing this excercise will enable our county agencies to continue receiving grants from the Depatment of Homeland Security.
Cmdr. Don Davis
La Paz County S.O.
Incident Command PIO
What a great way to test incident communications. It was inspiring to see all the agencies working together. With the potential to have serious disasters in our county it is comforting knowing that operations are tested and exercised.