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Do it yourself … “What Resources?” Not exactly something we built ourselves, but thanks to our local Emergency Operations Center (in combination with our local Dispatch / Communications Center who use it for community-level emergency notifications) we have access to what I’d term “team-level” Everbridge mass notifications system. Using Everbridge we can send a message to all our team members; phone (land line, mobile, work), email, TXT either in priority order (with time delays in between) or all at once … all devices / mechanims - almost instantaneously.
Drones (UAV/UAS) helping on lighting strike fires We are a mountain volunteer department with access to a mutual aid partner Boulder Emergency Squad; a volunteer technical services emergency response team. BES run a UAS program - Unmanned Aeriel Systems, colloqually knowns as drones. BES UAS are systems because they carry technology; high definition cameras, heat sensetive cameras and radio technolgy to transmit those images (in real-time) back to ICP. This summer a powerful lightning storm started a set of fires in remote areas of our district.
Do it yourself … “CAD dispatch to membership” Modern Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) systems provide an email interface (often known as SMTP interface, with that M being for eMail.) Typically a department may request that their communications center (dispatch) assign an email addressfor them, and that email address receives notifications upon dispatch. The simplest step to take is to wire this email address to a Google Group of members who want dispatch notifications to their device.
Do it yourself … “Who is responding?” We are a mountain volunteer department where we respond to incidents from home. We don’t do shifts. With limited cellular service in most areas I was long against tools that showed I am responding thinking “wait 5 minutes and all who are coming will be on radio at station … no need to take time for some system.” That is still true, but I’ve changed my thinking somewhat, in the main because we now have a full-time Chief who is at station.
With eNFIRS (The replacement for NFIRS Web Tools) you can request a temporary password if you forgot your password. (Prior to this you would have to contact your NFIRS State Point of Contact …. Step #1 If you’ve forgotten your password or username Based upon which credential your misplaved, visit the appropriate link: Forgot Password https://nfirs.fema.gov/NFIRSWeb/forgetpassword Forgot Username https://nfirs.fema.gov/NFIRSWeb/forgetusername … you can find both links on the eNFIRS login page.
Having spent the last year or more digesting NFIRS specifications and tooling and “getting into the headspace of NFIRS” I was intruiged to come upon this article “Now is the Time to Finally Fix NFIRS: Let’s Make ‘Timely Information Sharing’ the Rallying Cry for the Post-COVID Fire Service” by Dr. Matt Hinds-Aldrich - Chief Fire Data Nerd. Not a short article, but fascintating … I learned a lot; some historical background to combining my fresh perspective, and digested some interesting proposals.
Understanding NFIRS Overview:  Helping you understand Fire Incident Reporting. I’ve been a volunteer firefighters for over 20 years, but I’ve been digging deeper into NFIRS only for the last few years. Here in Responserack ‘Understanding NFIRS’ posts are some of the things I’ve learned along the way. In this series of posts we’ll cover the NFIRS data dictionary and NFIRS codes and provide a guide for how you complete Incident Type, fill in Actions Taken and various other important fields like Property Use.
Technology for Volunteer Firefighters Overview:  Technology can help Volunteer Firefighters. Technology is a dirty word in volunteer firefighting. Technology gets wet and fizzles on the fire ground, technology makes things harder when time is of the essence, technology just sucks. Firefighters rant against technology. Much of this is true, very few technologies help during the incident, but technology can significantly help volunteer fire departments both before and after the call.
What is eNFIRS? Overview:  eNFIRS is the new look/feel of the FEMA USFA NFIRS web tools. eNFIRS is the new look/feel of the FEMA USFA NFIRS web tools. With simplified login (a single login to all tools) and a new (even mobile device friendly) interface, it represents an upgrade for the fire community users. More specifically eNFIRS is … In 2020 the U.S. Fire Administration upgraded the NFIRS system in a large tchnology update.
This week (starting Monday, November 2nd 2020) NFIRS WebTools came back online after a significant modernization upgrade. Services are returning. If you wish to get started with eNFIRS, here are some good steps to take: Step #1 Find your Password Reset Email Locate the password reset email you were likely sent mid-October. It should look something like this. If you cannot locate your password reset email, or you can but you cannot access your fire department, then you have two choices: