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MAY 2010

VOLUME 11 | 2

ᔡ News: Airwave provides Firelink to Scotland’s eight fire and rescue services

Mobile Space Specialists

ᔡ Registration opens for ESS2010 – visit www.ess2010.com ᔡ Profile: specialist vehicle manufacturer W H Bence Coachworks ᔡ People: Kent and Leicestershire police forces appoint new Chief Constables ᔡ Specification and selection of PPE plus Bristol kits out HART ᔡ Civil Resilience: RADSAFE assists the emergency services plus how BTP is planning for the 2012 Olympics

www.whbence.co.uk Tel: 01454 310909

ᔡ Vehicles: a preview of NAPFM 2010 and BMW updates its bestselling motorbike ᔡ Profile: Association of Lowland Search and Rescue (ALSAR) ᔡ A guide to some of the latest products and services available ᔡ Look out for the Who’s Who Directory 2010/11 coming soon! ISSN 1472-1090

www.mmcpublications.co.uk


CONTENTS | 1

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Regular features First Words The Cabinet Office appoints Serco to manage and operate The Emergency Planning College

3

News BAWP awards recognise efforts of women in policing, BSI launches a new suppliers’ website and The Scottish Government eases pension pressures

6

Events A round up of upcoming events including APA-ACPO and INNER CORDON 2010

13

Profile

25 46

Practical training from The National Academy of Crime Scene Cleaners

Page 61 – VT Group offers asset ownership options.

Inside this issue PPE

Vehicles

Cosalt supplies new kit to North West fire and rescue services, Hazardous Area Response Teams are equipped with an ensemble by Bristol Uniforms, plus the latest PPE products

32

17

The Association of Lowland Search and Rescue, which is made up of over 500 trained search technicians around the UK

Civil Contingencies

Technology

26

Panasonic launches new additions to its Toughbook range and a unique Kirintec jammer prevents bomb explosions

30

Contracts & People Leicestershire and Kent appoint new Chief Constables, Special Branch and Counter Terrorism Officers will be equipped with new mobile ID units and Mapyx becomes official mapping partner of Mountain Rescue England and Wales

52

Major nuclear consignors have come together to establish RADSAFE, a transport emergency response scheme, and British Transport Police prepares for the 2012 Olympic Games

Environment

The Emergency Services Show 2010

55

Registration is now open for the UK’s only event for anyone involved in response, recovery or emergency planning – book your place now at www.ess2010.com

10

Product Information Motorola announces enhancements to its MOTOTRBO™ two-way radios, NightSearcher’s UV lights are perfect for crime investigation, plus other new products

62

Last Words Computers can be programmed never to make mistakes, but there is a cause of accidents that is harder to control – human error. Phil Smith, Specialist Operational Support, explains how understanding about ‘human factors’ can prevent these errors from becoming disasters

BMW launches a new motorcycle equipped with a RESPoNSe© warning system, Kinetic Grafix and Strypz merge to form Vehicle Livery Solutions, and forces are looking at mobile police stations as a way to balance budgets

68

Page 34 – BMW launches a new R 1200 RT-P Authorities motorcycle.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

How can emergency services plan for future environmental disasters and reduce their own impact on the environment?

48

Communications From humble beginnings as a highquality voice platform to an advanced integrated voice and data communications network, the future looks bright for TETRA, and we look at how emergency communications are managed in Spain


FIRST WORDS | 3

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Volume No: 11 Date:

Issue No: 02 May 2010

Editor: David J. Holden MEng(Hons) davidholden@mmcpublications.co.uk Editorial Assistant: Alice Burton aliceburton@mmcpublications.co.uk Advertisement Manager: David Brown davidbrown@mmcpublications.co.uk Advertisement Sales: Carol Fox carolfox@mmcpublications.co.uk Circulation & Subscription Manager: Anne Ahier anne@mmcpublications.co.uk

IT/www Contact: Ceinwen Clarke ceinwen@mmcpublications.co.uk

Managing Director: David Brown Directors: John Clarke David Holden Colin Robinson Ceinwen Clarke (Sec.) Published by

Emergency Services (MMC) Ltd a division of Modern Media Communications Ltd Gresham House 54 High Street Shoreham by Sea West Sussex BN43 5DB United Kingdom Tel: +44(0)1273 453033 Fax: +44(0)1273 453085 info@mmcpublications.co.uk e-mail: www: www.mmcpublications.co.uk Distribution: EMERGENCY SERVICES TIMES is free of charge to officers and managers who are buyers or specifiers actively involved in the procurement of equipment or services within the emergency response industry and based in the UK and Irish Republic. All other categories of reader are invited to subscribe at £120.00 to UK addresses and £155.00 overseas. Single copy price £20.00 including post and packing. The articles within Emergency Services Times are copyright and are the property of the publisher Emergency Services (MMC) Ltd and cannot be reproduced in any media form without permission of the publisher. Application should be made in writing. Reprints of articles and advertisements are available, allow 28 days for delivery. PDF pages are available by email at £20.00 (+VAT) per page (€32.50, $33). Prices on application to the publisher. A reader enquiry service is available for readers to indirectly contact companies for further details on products and services advertised in this issue as well as editorial items mentioned. A postcard is inserted in this issue for returning to us or you may fax your enquiries with the numbers and your full address, telephone, fax on +44(0)1273 453085 Studio work by Keystrokes, Shoreham by Sea, West Sussex Tel: 01273 453300 keystrokes@btconnect.com

Serco appointed to manage the Emergency Planning College Serco has been appointed by the Cabinet Office to manage and operate the UK’s Emergency Planning College (EPC). The company has become responsible for all aspects of EPC operations in an innovative arrangement, which sees the Cabinet Office retaining a key role in policy and direction. This fundamental shift in the way EPC is managed will allow a more agile, flexible approach to strengthening UK security and resilience. Serco will engage with key stakeholders of the college to ensure delivery of the high quality, affordable training that EPC’s customers need, and focus on business development to help sustain EPC’s role over the long term.

Serco will focus on both growing the business and enhancing the EPC’s reputation as the UK’s leading provider of emergency planning training across the public and private sectors. The EPC has been the Government’s centre of excellence in crisis management and emergency planning training since 1989. It is the only centre to offer training that is fully endorsed by resilience policymakers, is fully compliant with the Civil Contingencies Act 2004 and incorporates key legislation derived directly from the latest national guidance.

deliver policy direction and guidance; resilience doctrine and guidance; overall quality assurance of training; and contract monitoring. Strong track record

In managing the EPC, Serco will bring to bear its strong track record in defence and emergency training support, and in managing critical national services including air traffic control, transport networks, hospitals, airports, and defence and national security infrastructure. In delivering these essential services, Serco makes an active contribution to the development of resilience for governments around the world through its focus on reducing vulnerability to emergencies. Serco’s training experience includes the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom at Shrivenham, which trains senior military leaders from UK and international armed services, and operation of the world renowned International Fire Training College (IFTC).

The importance of the EPC to the UK’s resilience in the face of national emergencies has grown in recent years, given the increasing security challenges facing the UK. With this new contract, Serco will support the Cabinet Office in enhancing that position in the future.

“This is an innovative arrangement that offers benefits to both partners,” said Michael CharltonWeedy of EPC. “It offers the opportunity to build an even better and more successful business at EPC, building on the extensive improvement and modernisation that has been recently undertaken. In addition it will also increase the college’s contribution to the UK’s resilience to emergencies through the delivery of world-class training, whilst also achieving substantial savings.”

A joint partnership board will direct the college. Serco will have responsibility for all services at the EPC, including training delivery and support, sales and marketing, finance, estate management, information and communications technology, and security. Serco will focus on both growing the business and enhancing the EPC’s reputation as the UK’s leading provider of emergency planning training across the public and private sectors, and will also take a lead role in maintaining professional standards for emergency planning. The Cabinet Office Civil Contingencies Secretariat (CCS) will

Echoing Michael’s words, Serco’s newly appointed Service Director at EPC, John Farmery, says, “A key part of Serco’s mission is to help strengthen the UK’s national security and resilience, we are excited by the opportunity to further our contribution through this new relationship with the EPC. I am looking forward to working with our new partners to sustain and enhance the role of the EPC in protecting the public, and to implement our ideas for delivering an increasingly coherent and comprehensive level of resilience across all sectors in the UK and beyond.”

Emergency Services Times May 2010


4 | A-Z

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Companies Company Name

Page No

3M ......................................................................................................................42 4th National Fire and Rescue Service Trauma Conference .........................13 AEA Technology Group...................................................................................66 AES ....................................................................................................................45 Airmed...............................................................................................................14 Airwave Solutions ............................................................................7, 14, 28, 66 Ambulance Service Network...........................................................................52 Anderco Safety..................................................................................................45 Andrew Solutions.............................................................................................55 APA-ACPO 2010...............................................................................................13 APD Communications.....................................................................................52 Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO)..............................13, 32, 37, 52 Association of Lowland Search and Rescue (ALSAR)...........................10, 46 Audi ...................................................................................................................45 AY Morton ........................................................................................................42 BAPCO ..............................................................................................................28 Basildon and Thurrock University Hospital...................................................7 Bassetlaw District Council .........................................................................38,40 Bedfordshire and Luton Fire and Rescue Service..........................................6 Birmingham City Council ...............................................................................53 BlackBerry.........................................................................................................66 Blue Lights Horse of the Year Show ..............................................................13 BMT Argoss......................................................................................................66 BMW .....................................................................................................32, 34, 45 Bristol Uniforms.........................................................................................21, 22 British Association of Women in Policing (BAWP).......................................7 British Cave Rescue..........................................................................................10 British Corporate Industry Association (BCIA) ...........................................21 British Red Cross .........................................................................................6, 28 British Standards Institute (BSI)......................................................................8 British Transport Police...............................................................................7, 29 Bullard ...............................................................................................................22 Cambridgeshire Constabulary...........................................................................7 Carnation Designs ............................................................................................45 Chemspec Europe.............................................................................................25 Cleveland Fire Brigade ....................................................................................13 Connect South West .........................................................................................52 Connexion2 .......................................................................................................66 Contain-ER .......................................................................................................25 Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service ..................................................................42 Cosalt International..........................................................................................18 COSLA ................................................................................................................8 Crown Prosecution Service .............................................................................52 Cumbria Constabulary .......................................................................................7 Cybertech Pro ...................................................................................................30 DCRS Ltd .........................................................................................................62 Defence Academy of the United Kingdom .....................................................3 Department for Work and Pensions .........................................................38,40 Derbyshire Constabulary...................................................................................7 DVLA ...........................................................................................................38,40 East Anglian Air Ambulance ............................................................................6 East of England Ambulance Service ..............................................................53 Emergency Planning College ............................................................................3 Emergency Planning Society 2010 .................................................................13 The Emergency Services Show 2010............................................10, 13, 25, 46 The Environment Agency...................................................................18, 38, 40 EPES..................................................................................................................59 Essex Police.......................................................................................................52 Europol ..............................................................................................................13 Excelerate Technology ...............................................................8, 13, 38, 40, 45 Exmed................................................................................................................37 Federal Signal ...................................................................................................45 Fire & Rescue 2010 ..........................................................................................13 Firex North .......................................................................................................13 Ford....................................................................................................................32 Foundation Trust Network (FTN) ...................................................................8

Company Name

Page No

Company Name

Page No

Frontline Emergency Products ......................................................................22 Global Armour..................................................................................................22 Global Marine Systems....................................................................................13 Gloucestershire Police......................................................................................30 Goliath Footwear..............................................................................................20 Great Western Ambulance Service .................................................................52 Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service..................................................8 Greater Manchester Police ................................................................................8 Gwent Police ................................................................................................38,40 HAM Associates ...............................................................................................53 Hampshire Constabulary ..........................................................................32, 52 Hampshire County Council ............................................................................32 Hawk Protection...............................................................................................13 Health and Safety Laboratory.........................................................................17 Her Majesty's Court Service .......................................................................38,40 Highways Agency.........................................................................................6, 45 HM Coastguard.................................................................................................14 HM Revenue and Customs.........................................................................38,40 HTK ..................................................................................................................53 Humberside Fire and Rescue Service ............................................................14 Hunter Apparel Solutions Ltd........................................................................22 Ice-Sar................................................................................................................18 Infoterra.............................................................................................................62 INNER CORDON 2010 ..................................................................................13 Institute of Conflict and Management (ICM) .................................................7 International College of Management and Engineering..............................53 INTERSHUTZ 2010........................................................................................13 ISEEU Global ...................................................................................................30 ISIS ....................................................................................................................13 Jangro.................................................................................................................66 Jolly ...................................................................................................................22 John Dennis Coachbuilders ............................................................................42 Kent Police....................................................................................................7, 52 Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance ......................................................14 Killgerm ............................................................................................................25 Kinetic Grafix...................................................................................................35 Kirintec .............................................................................................................30 Lancashire Police .........................................................................................7, 30 Land Rover .......................................................................................................45 Leicestershire Constabulary........................................................................7, 52 Lion Apparel.....................................................................................................21 LIVES................................................................................................................14 London Fire Brigade .......................................................................................22 M&L Ambulance Service................................................................................45 Maritime and Coastguard Agancy (MCA)...............................................10, 46 McKinsey and Company ..................................................................................8 Mercedes-Benz............................................................................................42, 53 Metropolitan Police............................................................................................7 Microbus............................................................................................................52 Mitsubishi .........................................................................................................45 MoD Police .........................................................................................................7 Motorola ............................................................................................................62 Mountain Rescue England and Wales ...........................................7, 10, 46, 53 The National Academy of Crime Scene Cleaners (NACSC) .......................25 National Association of Police Fleet Managers (NAPFM)....................13, 32 National Chemical Emergency Centre (NCEC)............................................66 National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA).................13, 14, 28, 32, 37 Networking Women in Fire Service (NWFS)...............................................20 Newark and Sherwood District Council...................................................38,40 NHS Confederation..........................................................................................52 NightSearcher ...................................................................................................65 Norfolk Constabulary ......................................................................................52 North Yorkshire Police ....................................................................................45 Northamptonshire Police ..................................................................................7 Norton Integrated Systems Ltd......................................................................45 Nottinghamshire County Council ............................................................38, 40

Nottinghamshire Police.......................................................................38, 40, 45 Novus Systems..................................................................................................30 OGC Buying Solutions ....................................................................................32 P2i ......................................................................................................................22 Panasonic...........................................................................................................30 Police Federation..............................................................................................37 Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust ....................................................................6 PPSS...................................................................................................................22 Primetech ..........................................................................................................42 Quest Software..................................................................................................30 Quiqlite..............................................................................................................66 Radio Telecom Services Ltd............................................................................22 RAF Fire and Rescue Service..........................................................................14 RAF SAR...........................................................................................................10 RNLI .....................................................................................................10, 14, 28 Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service........................................................6 Royal Engineers................................................................................................14 Royal Marines...................................................................................................14 Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents................................................8 Royal United Services Institute (RUSI).........................................................28 RSG Engineering Ltd......................................................................................45 RSPCA...............................................................................................................45 RTG International............................................................................................23 Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics ................................................................23 Scottish Fire Conference 2010 ........................................................................13 Sea Work 2010...................................................................................................13 Serco.....................................................................................................................3 Shepherd Search and Rescue Conference......................................................14 Simpler ..............................................................................................................13 Skoda..................................................................................................................45 South Central Ambulance NHS Trust .............................................................6 South Western Ambulance Service NHS Trust.............................................52 South Yorkshire Police.......................................................................................7 Southend University Hospital ..........................................................................7 St John Ambulance ....................................................................................28, 42 Staffordshire Police ............................................................................................7 Strathclyde Police.............................................................................................52 Strypz.................................................................................................................35 Suffolk Constabulary..........................................................................................7 Sunguard ...........................................................................................................28 Surrey Air Ambulance .....................................................................................53 Syntech ..............................................................................................................66 Taiga...................................................................................................................18 Thomas Jacks....................................................................................................66 Toyota.................................................................................................................45 Transport for London ......................................................................................55 Turners of Soham Ltd........................................................................................6 UK Biobank......................................................................................................42 UK Medical Response .......................................................................................6 UK Rescue Challenge ......................................................................................13 Ultima Cleaning Ltd........................................................................................25 Vauxhall.............................................................................................................32 Vehicle Livery Solutions..................................................................................35 VOSA............................................................................................................38,40 VT Group....................................................................................................45, 61 West Midlands Ambulance Service............................................................8, 37 West Midlands Fire Service ..............................................................................8 West Midlands Police.........................................................................................7 West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service......................................................6, 7 W H Bence ........................................................................................................31 Wiltshire Constabulary ....................................................................................32 Wiltshire Council .............................................................................................53 WL Gore & Associates Ltd .......................................................................18, 22 Wm Sugden & Sons .........................................................................................21 Yorkshire Ambulance Service .........................................................................52

Company Name

Company Name

Advertisers Company Name

Page No

Anderco Safety..................................................................................42 APA-ACPO 2010............................................................................IBC Arqiva ..................................................................................................2 Bl端cher ..............................................................................................24 Bristol Uniforms...............................................................................19 British Red Cross..............................................................................54 Certificate in Terrorism Studies......................................................50 Community Resilience..................................................................IFC DMS technologies ............................................................................64 DCRS.................................................................................................54 The Emergency Planning College..................................................28 Emergency Planning Society Conference......................................67 The Emergency Services Show 2010..............................................57 Emergency Services Times website................................................35 Excelerate Technology Ltd..............................................................12 FAME Commercials Ltd.................................................................36 Goliath Footwear Ltd ......................................................................19

Page No

HAIX .................................................................................................23 INNER CORDON 2010 ..................................................................58 Intramark Ltd...................................................................................16 ISC UK Ltd ......................................................................................60 Kussmaul Electronics Co Inc..........................................................36 Laerdal.................................................................................................9 Lion Apparel.....................................................................................27 Lyon Equipment Limited ...........................................................5, 47 Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service ..............................................49 Motorola ............................................................................................64 NAPFM 2010....................................................................................67 Norfolk Constabulary.......................................................................49 Pacific Helmets (UK) Ltd ...............................................................19 Packexe Ltd.......................................................................................43 Peli Products (UK) Ltd ...................................................................50 Police Federation..............................................................................67 Primetech ..........................................................................................44

Page No

Professional Protection Systems.....................................................27 Proflight Bags ...................................................................................63 Red Box Recorders Limited............................................................43 Rennicks (UK) Ltd ..........................................................................15 RSG Engineering Limited ..............................................................64 Safequip .............................................................................................64 SP Services..............................................................................OBC, 63 Thomas Jacks....................................................................................56 University of Leicester ....................................................................60 Vehicle Livery Solutions .................................................................39 Volvo ..................................................................................................36 VT Group ..........................................................................................33 W H Bence..............................................................................OFC, 40 WILL-BURT....................................................................................39 WL Gore & Associates.....................................................................21 Wm Sugden & Sons .........................................................................24

Emergency Services Times May 2010


6 | NEWS

In brief . . . South Central Ambulance NHS Trust (SCAS) and Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust are celebrating the introduction of a new initiative which aims to improve flow of patients brought into the Emergency Department of Queen Alexandra Hospital by ambulance. Computer terminals in the Emergency Department, Medical Assessment Unit and Surgical Assessment Unit alert hospital staff when a patient is en route to the hospital in an ambulance, which allows the staff to provide a swift handover between the two teams. This reduces the time emergency crews spend in the hospital, allowing them to be available for the next emergency, and improves the experience for the patient. It also allows the Emergency Department staff to ensure space is available in the most appropriate place in the hospital. www.southcentralambulance.nhs.uk

UK Medical Response, the independent ambulance service provider, is celebrating a prosperous six months since its launch. The company has won many major business contracts and its fleet contains over 30 vehicles, including 25 fully operational ambulances and seven RRVs. After appointing Daniel Gore as Chief Operating Officer in January, the company is looking to recruit many staff in a variety of positions due to the growth of the business. They are recruiting: a Clinical Leadership and Governance Manager; full time Ambulance Care Assistants, for which training will be given if needed; qualified Paramedics (HPC Registered Bank); Technicians (ICHD Qualified Bank); and Emergency Care Assistants. To apply for any of the positions at UKMR, send your CV and details to recruitment@ukmr.com, stating which position is of interest.

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Highways Agency aims to improve motorcyclist safety

In order to promote road safety for motorcyclists in East Anglia, The Highways Agency has teamed up with local haulier Turners of Soham Ltd and the East Anglian Air Ambulance to promote a Think Bike campaign. Because nearly 500 bikers died and 5600 were injured on Britain’s roads in 2008, the campaign was launched to encourage motorcyclists to manage and reduce their risk, and tells other motorists to consider the people riding motorbikes. The launch of the campaign took place on 26 March at Marshall Airport in Cambridge and involved four huge lorries, supplied by Turners of Soham,

carrying 20-foot-high panels showing the Think Bike message. It is thought the four vehicles will cover around 100,000 miles during the six-month campaign, giving thousands of motorists the opportunity to see the message. Steve Davy, Highways Agency Road Safety Coordinator for East Anglia, said, “Motorcyclists represent less than one percent of road users, but they account for 19 percent of the total number of casualties on the road. We have to get it home to all road users they must Think Bike.” www.highways.gov.uk www.eaaa.org.uk

Red Cross emergency support celebrated

www.ukmr.com

Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service has teamed up with the Health and Safety Executive to help businesses in Slough, focusing on health and safety in the workplace. The scheme, Estates Excellence, was prompted by small businesses in industrial estates in the area. The scheme involves advisers visiting the businesses and offering free advice on reducing red tape and, of course, fire safety. Royal Berkshire FRS’s Station Manager Nigel Flatt said, “With education and fully-funded training being offered as part of this programme, we hope to see a reduction in the losses suffered and an improved awareness throughout.” www.hse.gov.uk/estatesexcellence

(From L to R) Candice Kormoczi, WYFRS; Linda Kaye, British Red Cross, Area Manager Brian Robson, WYFRS; and David Kellly, Brit Insurance.

The British Red Cross’s fire and emergency support unit is being celebrated by two fire and rescue services. Because of its constant efforts helping the victims of emergency incidents in Luton and Bedfordshire, British Red Cross recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Bedfordshire and Luton Fire and Rescue Service to cement the partnership between the two services. The Red Cross has also recently celebrated its 12-year partnership with West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Ser-

vice (WYFRS), which has gone from strength to strength over the years. The partnership started a highly successful pilot scheme last year in which fire safety officers acted as Red Cross volunteers during their day shift and Red Cross volunteers were called out at night. The Red Cross can now provide a more efficient service with a new emergency response vehicle, worth £30,000, funded by Brit Insurance. www.redcross.org.uk

Emergency Services Times May 2010

Football five-aside promotes fire fighting career to young women

Redborne’s winning Captain with, left, England star Siobhan Chamberlain and, right, Anika Leslie-Walker from the Beds FA.

Bedfordshire and Luton Fire and Rescue Service is appealing to young women to consider a career as a firefighter by staging a five-a-side futsal tournament. Run in conjunction with Beds FA, BLFRS staff, who are trained as football coaches, helped to created futsal teams in schools and colleges with girls aged 14 and up. The 10 teams then competed in a grand final that took place on 28 April at the Barker’s Lane sports stadium in Bedford, which was observed by Chelsea and England player Siobhan Chamberlain. The winners were a team from Hastingbury School in Kempston, and in the under 16s category the winners were Redborne in Ampthill. Matt Cross, who coordinated the project on behalf of BLFRS, said, “We are always trying to encourage women to think about a career in the fire and rescue service and we hope this activity will help them make this choice.” BLFRS has a track record of supporting and being involved with football events with a view of passing fire and safety messages onto children and young people. Chief Fire Officer Paul Fuller, said, “Promoting fitness among young people is something our firefighters can do by example. We also believe that encouraging young people to play team sports is a good way of them learning to work together while enjoying themselves.” www.extraordinary.direct.gov.uk


NEWS | 7

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Awards recognise efforts of women in policing The annual British Association of Women in Policing (BAWP) awards recently took place to recognise the outstanding achievements of women police officers and staff throughout the UK. The awards were presented by Julie Spence, Chief Constable of Cambridgeshire Constabulary and BAWP President, who said, “I am constantly amazed by the capacity of some people for giving their time, energy and commitment to help others.” Among the awards, which include categories in bravery, leadership, mentoring and excellence, is a special recognition award aimed at men who have made a significant contribution to the advancement of women in policing. This year BAWP received 108 nominations from forces across the UK, including some from national forces such as the British Transport Police and MOD Police. Nine police officers, including two who are retired, three staff and a PSCO received awards. The winners were: Helen Ivory and Vicki Hastings, Cumbria Constabulary; PCSO Nicola Yates, West Midlands Police;

Emergency services staff take part in bariatric course As the people of Britain get heavier, it is vital for hospitals and the emergency services to know the best practice for caring for obese victims of an emergency. To help this process, the bariatric working party – which includes representatives from Southend University Hospital, Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals, the fire and rescue and ambulance services, police and other organisations – stages a number of practical exercises to ensure that all parties are up to speed with tackling different situations involving obese patients. The latest exercise involves the retrieval of bariatric patients from a simulated road traffic accident. Members of the fire and rescue, ambulance, air ambulance and police services will pull together as the group use a waterfilled manikin which mimics the movements of a bariatric patient. Barbara Mills, Health and Safety Advisor at Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals, says, “We work with all agencies to make it safer for staff moving bariatric patients, make it safer for the patient and help them keep their dignity and privacy.” www.ml-ambulance.co.uk

Claire Sykes, South Yorkshire Police; Sergeant Isabella McManus, MoD Police and Guarding Agency; Constable Janet Humphrey, Suffolk Constabulary; Constable Sarah Hogan, Leicestershire Constabulary; Constable Paula Rutherford, Northamptonshire Police; Constable Elizabeth Mumford, West Midlands Police; Constables Andrew Pope and Andrew Wolstencroft, Staffordshire Police; and two retired officers were award-

ed the Lifetime Achievement Award: Chief Superintendent Lynn Harris, Derbyshire Constabulary and Superintendent Shirley Tulloch, Metropolitan Police. These winners will be put forward for an International Award for Women in Policing. In 2009, five award winners went on to receive an award in the IAWP ceremony in Seattle, USA. www.bawp.org

First female Chief Constable shares expertise with Kent Police

In brief . . . Airwave, the national provider of data and voice solutions to the emergency services, has provided Scotland’s eight fire and rescue services with Firelink, making them the first in the UK to receive the communications system. It replaces the old outdated system and boasts improved coverage, security, resilience and interoperability with other organisations, particularly with the police and ambulance services which have also adopted Airwave. Fergus Ewing, Minister for Community Safety, said, “Firelink represents a significant commitment to the safety and security of Scotland’s communities. Scotland’s fire and rescue services now have the most advanced communication system in the UK.” www.airwavesolutions.co.uk

ICM, the national body responsible for developing standards to help reduce risk associated with violent and aggressive behaviour, has awarded West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) Institute of Conflict Management (ICM) Quality Award Centre status. WYFRS is the first fire and rescue service in the UK to receive the award because all community safety staff have undergone a two-year training programme, enabling them to deliver conflict management training to other staff. The training programme will give all community safety staff skills on preventing and management of workrelated violence, as well as giving them a better understanding of issues such as bullying and aggression. The staff will be trained during the next 12 months, and one-day refresher courses will be held yearly to update their skills and knowledge. www.westyorksfire.gov.uk

(From L to R) Assistant Chief Constable Allyn Thomas, Pauline Clare, and Chair of the Kent Police Authority, Ann Barnes.

Pauline Clare, the UK’s first female Chief Constable, visited Kent Police Authority to share her expertise and experiences of policing as a woman. Pauline, the now retired Chief Constable for Lancashire Police, visited Kent as part of a two-day programme involving over 150 officers and staff. The programme involved a number of workshops on one-to-one coaching, leading a force in times of change, and gender progression. Ann Barnes, Chair of Kent Police Authority, said, “It’s important that we

look at leadership issues. We wanted to tap into Pauline’s experiences of being a woman and rising through the ranks in what is a primarily male-dominated environment. I’m really keen for the authority to make sure its female staff and officers feel empowered to take that step and apply for promotion. Kent Police needs to reflect the people it’s serving and to do that we need to have more women in higher ranks.” www.kentpoliceauthority.gov.uk

Emergency Services Times May 2010

3 May marked the first ever Mountain and Cave Rescue Awareness Day in England and Wales, where teams around the country gave the public an insight into their important life-saving work. To celebrate the Awareness Day, bases from all over the country opened up their doors to visitors and even volunteers abseiled down local beauty spots to raise money. HRH Prince William, who is patron of Mountain Rescue England & Wales, said, “Mountain Rescue do the most brave and tremendous job imaginable. Their work saves countless lives. No-one should take Mountain Rescue for granted – all the teams are voluntary and they deserve all the support they can get.” www.mountain.rescue.org.uk


8 | NEWS

In brief . . . Excelerate Technology has seen a growth in the command, video and communications technology market, despite the economic difficulties in the UK. Excelerate has seen its orders rise from £2.4m to £13.1m in the last 15 months, and because of this three new regional Sales Managers have been appointed. Jeremy Valentine (North), David Ennis (South) and Steve Pilkington (Midlands, Wales and South West) will focus on developing and managing new clients in the emergency services and public and commercial sectors. David Savage, Excelerate founder and CEO, thinks the emergency services are making investments in high-tech command vehicles because of the critical priorities they have to prepare for. Excelerate’s customers also recognise the long-term cost benefits of having broadband communications. www.excelerate.info

West Midlands Ambulance Service has two new recruits to its Community First Response scheme – Irish sports horse nicknamed ‘Chase’ and his owner, Mark Bennett. Mark and Chase will be responding to 999 calls from Cannock Chase, a popular country park which covers 4.5 square miles. The park is largely inaccessible for normal road vehicles, so Mark and Chase will help respond to incidents and perform life-saving procedures to victims in hard to reach locations prior to the ambulance’s arrival. Mark’s knowledge of Cannock Chase will be a bonus too, as he can potentially advise ambulance crews on the best routes to take if they are arriving on foot. www.wmas.nhs.uk

West Midlands Fire Service has received a Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) Occupational Health and Safety Award in the Emergency Services sector, at the awards ceremony which took place on 13 May. Chief Fire Officer Vij Randeniya OBE picked up the award which recognises the service’s continued efforts to keep its firefighters and staff healthy and safe in the workplace. CFO Randeniya said, “The wellbeing and safety of our people is of the utmost importance, and this award helps us demonstrate that our commitment is not just words.” The RoSPA awards encourage organisations to develop robust health and safety management systems. www.rospa.com www.wmfs.net

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BSI launches buyers’ website

A new website has been launched by the British Standards Institute (BSI) with the needs of busy specifiers in mind. The site, www.kitemark.com/ specifiers, provides fast, convenient access to information about Kitemark schemes and a searchable directory of Kitemark-licensed suppliers. The home page offers quick links to five key sectors: building, fire, health and safety, energy and transport. Each section contains a list of relevant products and services, and a downloadable detailed datasheet is provided for each product or service.

Searchable directory As well as offering a convenient searchable directory, the ‘find it’ section also provides access to information about the standards relevant to the Kitemark schemes as well as a comprehensive listing of fire products bearing the Kitemark logo, which makes it easier for specifiers to verify claims made by manufacturers about product compliance. “No matter what sector they work in, specifiers are under pressure from every direction,” said Claire Lynam, Head of Communications and Alliances for BSI. “They have to make sure products meet the highest quality standards, satisfy health and safety requirements and are compliant with the relevant legislation. Our site will make life easier by providing specifiers with a dependable way for them to meet all these requirements quickly and easily.”

Blue lights battle it out in charity boxing contest

www.bsigroup.com www.kitemark.com/specifiers

New benchmarks aim to save expenditure on A&E departments The Foundation Trust Network (FTN) has launched the UK’s first project to benchmark the performance of accident and emergency (A&E) services, in order to improve efficiency and make better use of NHS funds. FTN Benchmarking, working in partnership with McKinsey and Company, analyses trusts’ performances on quality (clinical outcomes), cost effectiveness, and the day-to-day running of the service. The project is running from May until August 2010, in time for winter when the pressures on the department are higher. Focusing on A&E is particularly important as the number of patients

attending A&E has risen by nearly 20 percent over five years, from 16.5 million to around 19.6 million. Only around 17 percent of people attending A&E are admitted as patients. As part of the drive to curb NHS expenditure, hospitals will only be paid the full NHS tariff rate for emergency patients up to the level of their activity in the 2008-09 period. For any admissions above this number, the trust will receive just 30 percent of the standard rate. That means that a trust would see its income reduced by £2.4m without making any changes. www.nhsconfed.org

Scottish Government relieves pension pressures The Scottish Government and COSLA have reached an agreement regarding the arrangements for administering funding for police and fire and rescue service pensions. Previously, police and fire board budgets had to cope with varying levels of pension costs depending on the amount of officers retiring in a particular year. Greater clarity The new system means that the funding of pensions from the Scottish Government will be managed separately from other funding for police forces and fire and rescue services, giv-

Gavin Doyle from Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service, who works in Rochdale.

Police officers and firefighters from Greater Manchester donned boxing gloves as part of a ‘Battle of the Badges’ charity boxing match. More than £12,000 was raised in the contest, where police officers from Bolton and Salford and firefighters from Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service battled against each other. The winning team was the fire team, who took the trophy from the police, who had won the previous year. More than 1000 spectators came to see the contest at the De Vere Whites Hotel at the Reebok Stadium in Bolton.

ing greater clarity and certainty when planning for the future. Pension pressures increased in the last year, caused by the large amount of police officers and firefighters recruited in the 1970s who are now eligible for retirement. Because of this, The Scottish Government provided an additional £20m towards the pension costs, with the local government family contributing a further £20m. COSLA and The Scottish Government have also agreed to review the way in which police and fire pensions were funded.

Intensive training To prepare for the night, both teams underwent an intense training course resulting in the 32 fighters losing more than 23st (146.5kg) between them. The police were trained at Gloves Community Gym in Bolton and the fire and rescue service officers received training at a separate camp, Moss Side Community Boxing Club. Students from Salford City College studying an NVQ in Coaching, Teaching and Instruction were called to help the police officers train. The money raised will go to the Firefighters Charity, Amir Khan’s not-forprofit Gloves Gym and Greater Manchester High Sheriff’s Police Trust.

www.scotland.gov.uk

www.manchesterfire.gov.uk

Emergency Services Times May 2010


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Register now at www.ess2010.com for The Emergency Services Show 2010 Following the success of last year’s event, which attracted some 4000 attendees, The Emergency Services Show 2010 will build on the success of the previous four years, promising to be the best yet. Aimed at anyone involved in an emergency, the event will provide more opportunities to network and improve your relationships with other organisations to learn how you can work together more effectively. Read on to find out more about The Emergency Services Show 2010. The UK’s only event for anyone involved in emergency planning, response or recovery has been launched for 2010 and will take place on Wednesday 24 and Thursday 25 November at Stoneleigh Park, Coventry.

This annual show is a unique event promoting multi agency collaboration by bringing together everyone in the UK involved in an emergency – a unique mix of commercial and non-commercial exhibitors, from the manufacturers who showcase their latest products to the emergency services who demonstrate how this equipment is actually used. Bigger and better The Emergency Services Show 2010 will provide access to more of the latest technology, ideas and initiatives focused on improving public safety and protecting the environment and the Critical National Infrastructure. The show will be especially

relevant in light of the current uncertain political and economic climate, with opportunities to speak to contemporaries and exhibitors to help with framework agreements, income generation/ outsourcing and equipment requirements. The two-day supporting conference will provide delegates with the opportunity to join like-minded professionals to discuss the latest news, developments and strategic advances as well as hearing about lessons learnt and new initiatives from a range of high profile speakers. All weather display area To reflect the importance and popularity of this event, exhibition space has been increased to meet demand. The new Hall 3 will incorporate the larger displays of specialist equipment and vehicles previously shown outside. Under cover and protected from the elements, exhibitors will show the latest products, innovations and services, including practical demonstrations. Hall 2 includes the growing Blue Light Zone – which brings police, fire and rescue and ambulance services from around the UK together to showcase initiatives and share examples of best practice and the popular Emergency Response Zone – which is made up of other Category 1 and 2 responders, and professional, government and voluntary organisations, offering perfect networking

Emergency Services Times May 2010

opportunities to affiliated organisations. New for 2010, there will be a dedicated UK Search and Rescue (SAR) Zone featuring British Cave Rescue, Lowland Rescue, Maritime Incident Response Group (MIRG), MCA, Mountain Rescue England & Wales, RAF SAR and the RNLI. David Brown, Show Organiser, comments, “In these uncertain times it is more important than ever for all Category 1 and 2 Responders and associated agencies to talk together to enable them to share resources and make the most of their budgets. The Emergency Services Show offers the unique opportunity to meet with specialist suppliers to facilitate framework agreements and discuss new important innovations and products.” See the whole picture This well-established show was started in 2006 to facilitate collaboration following the publication of The Civil Contingencies Act 2004 by providing access to the latest technology, ideas and initiatives. Following recent national and global emergencies, it is proving more relevant than ever and is the one event that shouldn’t be missed this year. Registration is now open so visit www.ess2010.com today. Visitors to the website can also view a current list of exhibitors, the latest floorplan and see a video of last year’s show. www.ess2010.com


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All photos courtesy of West Midlands Fire Service Photographic – Photograper: Scott Lewis

Emergency Services Times May 2010

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EVENTS | 13

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Sally saddles up for the Blue Lights Horse of the Year Show

Events Diary 2010

The Blue Lights Horse of the Year Show is an exclusive annual event supported and created by the police, fire and rescue and ambulance services. The three-day event, which sees horsemen and women from emergency services across the UK, starts on Thursday 22 July at Aintree. Firefighter Sally Ratcliffe from Cleveland Fire Brigade will be competing again after scooping the ‘Prelim Dressage’ first prize last year. She is looking to triumph once more in the Novice category when she competes on horse Just Jack, on behalf of owner Vicky Petch. Sally has trained Just Jack in dressage and show jumping for the last eight years. Sally said, “I have extremely high hopes for Just Jack. The success of the show last year has made me very positive and determined to regain the Blue Lights Horse of the Year title. “It’s an honour and privilege to com-

Interschutz 2010 7–12 June Germany Sea Work 2010 15–17 June Southampton Emergency Planning Society 2010 21–23 June SECC, Glasgow Fire & Rescue 2010 29–30 June Hall M, Harrogate International Centre APA-ACPO 2010 29 June–1 July Manchester Central NAPFM 2010 7–8 September Exec Peterborough Learning from Each Other: Civilian and Military Emergency Care 13–15 September International Convention Centre, Birmingham UK Rescue Challenge 30 September–2 October Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service Firex North 27–28 October Manchester Central Scottish Fire Conference 2010 9–10 November Crieff Hydro, Perthshire 4th National Fire and Rescue Service Trauma Conference 12–13 November The West Midlands Fire Service Academy The Emergency Services Show 2010 24–25 November Stoneleigh Park, Warwickshire

Sally Ratcliffe with Just Jack (left) and her own horse Skullduggery (right).

pete at the Blue Lights Show. The event at Aintree is actually held on Aintree Race Course – home of the Grand National – and our horses are kept in the stables that, for example,

Red Rum or other winners of the national have been stabled in – it’s an amazing location for the event.” www.bluelightshorseoftheyearshow.co.uk

Get to know HART at INNER CORDON 2010 The first ever HART Conference & Exhibition, INNER CORDON 2010, takes place at Liverpool’s BT Convention Centre from 10-11 June. HART (Hazardous Area Response Teams) is now forming a crucial part of the national resilience and civil contingency infrastructure in the UK. But do you know enough about what these teams do? Have you seen the equipment they use and how it works? As a police officer, ambulance or fire and rescue professional, it is now vital that you are aware of the existence of Ambulance HART – specially trained NHS ambulance staff who could be working alongside you right inside the inner cordon (or ‘hot zone’)

of the next dangerous, hazardous or challenging major incident you attend. INNER CORDON 2010 comprises a conference and exhibition which not only showcases the work of HART teams, but also of their other colleagues working inside the inner cordon to save lives. HART teams provide a specialised ambulance response to the following types of incidents: Chemical, Biological, Radiological or Nuclear (CBRN) incidents or those involving hazardous materials (Hazmat) – deliberate or accidental; urban search and rescue (USAR) – collapsed structures, working at height; mass casualty events such as a bomb blast or major

train crash; multiple casualty/vehicle road traffic accidents (RTAs); and incidents in tunnels/confined spaces. It’s free to visit the exhibition! The exhibition is completely free of charge – as long as you pre-register beforehand. The exhibition hall will be full of some of the major suppliers of innovative products and services to those working in the emergency services and associated agencies. For them it will be a chance to meet others working inside (and outside) the inner cordon and will provide the opportunity to showcase their products to a keen and interested audience. www.ambulancehart.org

The APA-ACPO International Policing Exhibition and Conference The APA-ACPO International Policing Exhibition, targeted at anyone involved in policing and security, is being held from 30 June to 1 July at Manchester Central. Hosted in association with the Home Office, this event features the latest technology and services for policing and security from over 120 leading international suppliers and is free to attend for all police staff, associates and colleagues. Free accredited training The exhibition will feature educational workshops, presentations and case studies from organisations currently engaged in groundbreaking projects with police forces and authorities. Organisations involved in compiling the

programme include the National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA), ISIS and the Metropolitan Olympic Procurement to name but a few. These unique training sessions are free to attend and places will be limited, so register your interest on the event website now. Latest technology and services Once again, the layout of the exhibition will be split into dedicated zones to allow visitors to more easily navigate the full spectrum of products and technology on display. In addition to defence and security zones, the event will feature areas dedicated to IT and Communications, Special Operations and CBRN.

Exhibitors include world-leading top marine technology and engineering company Global Marine Systems, leading personal protection equipment supplier Hawk Protection and Europol, the European law enforcement agency aimed at preventing and combating terrorism and other serious forms of organised crime. Also exhibiting will be data specialist Excelerate Technology and lean-based solutions supplier Simpler. Following the success of the live demonstrations at the 2009 event, the 2010 event will host a range of live training features including canine bomb and drug search demonstrations, public safety cycling and handto-hand combat taking place throughout the two days of the show.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

The conference The APA-ACPO National Policing Conference will run alongside the exhibition and is a closed session for members of the Association of Chief Police Officers, Association of Police Authorities and the Home Office. This prestigious conference will deliver a key focus for the policy and direction of policing following the general election. The focused conference programme will include topical presentations on the 2012 Olympic Games, Counter Terrorism, Cyber crime and Tackling Violence and Serious Organised Crime, among others. www.acpo-apa.co.uk


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SAR event rescheduled

Due to the volcanic activity in Iceland, Shephard's 13th Search and Rescue conference and exhibition has been rescheduled to 15-16 September 2010. The event will provide the largest international gathering of SAR experts in Europe, and will also feature a MRCC and RNLI Lifeboat tour on 17 September. The following issues will be tackled:

the impact of location and communications technology, with emphasis on the means of rescue; helicopters and high-speed rescue craft enhancing the modern SAR armoury; the introduction of SAR fleets in the offshore industry, either acting independently or supporting the nation’s SAR services; tackling fires at sea; the important area of ‘Human Factors’; the use of simulation for training in the maritime world; and improvements in combat SAR with the increased use of unmanned vehicles for surveillance and detection both on land and in the air. www.shephard.co.uk/events

Humberside Rescue Day shows community spirit Humberside Fire and Rescue Service is organising a Rescue Day on 10 July at 7 Lakes Country Park in Crowle, North Lincolnshire. The event is about interaction with members of the public who generally only meet members of the emergency services in a crisis arena. The day will feature demonstrations and displays on road and water/waterside safety, as well as community safety, plus information from the emergency services regarding aspects such as fire safety/security and immediate first aid etc. Multi-agency The event will be attended by emergency services from Humberside, South Yorkshire, Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire plus Humber Rescue, HM Coastguard, RAF Fire and Rescue Service, the Royal Marines, the Royal Engineers, the Royal Air Force Regiment and numerous voluntary and aid organisations, such as Lives. The event has been organised and coordinated by a dedicated events planning committee comprising personnel

Preparations are well underway for the next Airmed Congress in 2011. The 10th triennial international conference is a landmark in the history of Airmed, because for the first time ever it is being held in the UK. The world conference will take place from 24-27 May 2011 in Brighton and is being hosted by the Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance in collaboration with EHAC, the European HEMS and Air Ambulance Committee. The Congress brings together professionals from the clinical and aviation world from over 50 countries. Renowned speakers from the international aero medical world and related agencies and associations will form part of an interesting and varied programme over the course of the four days. Medical topics will include: sessions on research and updates on stroke, trauma and airway management; medical interventions in pre-hospital treatment; and the latest medical equipment. In addition to plenary sessions, there will be workshops, an exhibition and a social programme.

The congress, which began in 1980 has a strong clinical bias and attracts international speakers and delegates. John Tickner, Chief Executive of Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance, said, “We have seen the service go through huge change over the last few years and although we have had our challenges we are very proud of what we have achieved. However, being given the opportunity to host such a prestigious international congress such as Airmed is the icing on the cake and we are looking forward to welcoming delegates to Brighton.” www.airmed2011.com

Regional Airwave workshops

within fire and rescue, police and ambulance services and the other aforementioned emergency organisations and partnerships within the local area. The event’s chosen charity this year is Help for Heroes and, although the event is free to the public, it is hoped that they can encouraged to donate as much as possible to the charity. www.rescueday.com

Swine flu focus at HPA conference The Health Protection Agency is bringing together some of the most eminent flu researchers and scientists both from the UK and internationally in a two-day conference to showcase the wealth of knowledge that has been learned about the H1N1 pandemic virus since it emerged in April 2009. The conference is being held from 21-22 June at the Shaw Theatre, Novotel, London and will include keynote speeches and session topics from some of the researchers who were integral to the response both nationally and internationally.

Airmed comes to the UK in 2011

Professor Maria Zambon, Director of the Centre of Infections, HPA, said, “This conference promises to be an exceptional meeting of some of the finest scientists and clinicians coming together to share their experiences and research findings from the recent pandemic. “Instead of focusing on policy, we wanted to talk specifically about new scientific knowledge and how this will help us respond to the next emerging influenza pandemic. By pooling our knowledge, we shape our actions in the future.” www.healthprotectionconference.org.uk

The National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA) has recently published the ‘Standard Operating Procedure Guide on Multi-Agency Airwave Interoperability. Its adoption will help the ambulance, fire and rescue, and police services along with the other Category 1 and 2 Responders make full use of the functionality provided by Airwave for interoperable voice communication. As the common national radio communications platform, Airwave has now been adopted by nearly all 1000 responder agencies that make up the UK Resilience Community. It is a vital tool that supports both the exercise of individual agency command and control as well as coordination across the command structures of the responder agencies. The three emergency services for England and Wales have agreed the standard operating procedure (SOP) guide and it has been endorsed by their chief officer and chief executive associations along with their respective government departments. It provides the source document for each service now to create and implement local and regional collaborative protocols and procedures for multiagency Airwave interoperability. The NPIA-led Multi-Agency Interoperability Programme (MAIP) Team will be supporting the responder agencies with this and helping them to review

Emergency Services Times May 2010

and update their current standard operating procedures to ensure consistency with the national standards. Local implementation To do this, the MAIP team will be working with the senior champions in each of the emergency services in England and Wales who have been appointed to lead on local implementation. That activity will be coordinated through Local Resilience Forums and their equivalents. Implementation will help embed a high level of consistency nationally on the use of Airwave to support both the individual and collective needs of all responder agencies for radio communications in response to incidents and events. Regional workshops in June and July will bring together the champions for the three services, plus representatives from Local Resilience Forums and the wider responder community to develop local and regional implementation plans. These will involve changes to local procedural policy, followed by training, exercising and then incremental rollout into day-to-day operations, response and event planning. A copy of the guide can be downloaded from the NPIA web page (www.npia.police.uk/interoperability) or by e-mailing the MAIP team at interoperability@npia.pnn.police.uk for a hard copy. www.npia.police.uk/interoperability


INTRAMARK INTRAMARK LTD

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Challenges in specification and selection When you specify and select Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for the emergency services it can be complicated and challenging. The range of hazards faced are much wider, and often less well quantified, than for most industrial situations. Emergency services usually use a head-to-toe ensemble of PPE (clothing, gloves, boots, helmets etc) including respiratory protective equipment (RPE – respirator, breathing apparatus). All the individual items need to provide a similar level of protection as they all face the same hazards at the same time. Risk assessment Your first step is a thorough risk assessment. This must address the full range of mechanical, thermal, chemical and ergonomic properties that the ensemble needs to have. You must also consider the intended work, so that the ensemble is suitable for the tasks involved. You will need to know: the level of real-world protection provided; the ergonomic requirements of the work (movements needed, lifting etc); the physiological burden from the ensemble on the wearer (fatigue, heat stress etc); the effect of wearing the ensemble on safe behaviour (reduced mobility, impaired vision etc); and the availability of data that will allow you to assess these factors. You may have conflicting priorities or incompatible performance requirements. Often a compromise must be reached between practicality and protection and, as a consequence, the work that can be undertaken using an ensemble may need to be limited. Choosing different ensembles for different applications may result in logistical and cost challenges. You may find standards for individual items helpful. They may give comparable data for several items (eg material tear strength or chemical permeation resistance), but interpreting these data for real-world use is not always easy.

Some information may be difficult to find or just not there, and filling the gaps can be expensive and time-consuming. At the Health and Safety Laboratory we don’t just test the protection and performance of PPE and ensembles, we also assess their performance specifications and interpret standards data. Examples include illicit drug laboratory entries and urban search and rescue tasks.

Finally, the responsibility for ensuring that PPE and ensembles are adequate and suitable is not new, and lies firmly with employers. Our work has highlighted areas where standards don’t offer enough information to select with confidence, including: protective performance of complete garments (rather than material samples); protective performance of ensembles (rather than individual items); retention of hazardous substances on materials and garments (during work and after cleaning); ability to safely and cleanly remove contaminated equipment; ability to decontaminate reusable garments and ensembles; and ergonomic and physiological aspects of garment and ensemble use. Many of these areas are not included in standards for individual items and, currently, few standards consider ensembles at all.

Practical performance testing One of the key challenges in future standards development will be to consider protection in a more holistic way, recognising that protection from ensembles is not simply the sum of the individual items. One aspect of this may be formalised practical performance testing. BS 8469:2007 ‘PPE for firefighters – Assessment of ergonomic performance and compatibility’ includes methods to assess the ergonomic and physiological effects of ensembles. When this is combined with assessments of protection and decontamination performance in practical conditions, it should provide confidence that ensembles are both adequate and suitable. An international standard for wildland firefighters’ ensembles that uses this approach is nearing completion.

Who pays? Finally, the responsibility for ensuring that PPE and ensembles are adequate and suitable is not new, and lies firmly with employers. How this is achieved, and who ultimately pays for the associated work, will be, however, a significant issue. There will be negotiations, and potentially partnerships, between employers and their suppliers. www.hsl.gov.uk

About the authors

Author: Nick Vaughan, PPE Technical Lead, PPE Team, Health and Safety Laboratory.

Author: Duncan Webb, Senior PPE Specialist, PPE Team, Health and Safety Laboratory.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

Nick Vaughan (PPE Technical Lead) and Duncan Webb (Senior PPE Specialist) work in HSL's PPE team. They have assessed and developed the specifications for, and tested the protective and practical performance of, emergency services PPE and ensembles. They are both members of British, European and International Standards Committees for PPE, have contributed to the development and revision of HSE guidance on RPE and PPE, and provide related training to HSE inspectors and others.


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Cosalt wins consortium contract For many years Cosalt has been one of the UK's leading providers of protective clothing and equipment to the emergency services, military, transport and construction industries. The company has recently been awarded a major contract by a consortium of North West fire and rescue services to supply new kit to firefighters throughout the region.

The new firecoat and overtrousers are manufactured in PBI to exacting technical and ergonomic standards. Both garments have a paraaramid outer fabric to impart excellent inherent mechanical strength and feature ergonomic design enhancements to deliver increased performance and comfort over existing kit. According to Cosalt's Design Manager Jayne Alexander, achieving the final design for the new ensemble was an evolutionary process that drew inspiration from a number of market sectors as well as Cosalt's in-depth knowledge and

understanding of the fire market and the changing role of today's firefighter. She said, “We take a proactive approach to design so we are always working on improvements, assessing how to improve cut and fit, fabrics and assemblies and then design these incremental advances into new products. For the North West consortium, the brief was to achieve the best ergonomic fit and full compatibility with gloves, boots and helmets, while keeping weight as light as possible for maximum manoeuvrability. This had to be done without compromising on heat protection and technical performance. By working very closely with the brigades and listening carefully to their feedback, we were able to test our ideas and make the product even better during the design stage.” Under this new framework, firefighters from all over the North West will be wearing the same new kit by the end of 2010. Lifejacket trial The Environment Agency (EA), a long-standing client of Cosalt and its subsidiary company Crewsaver, has recently trialled the new Crewfit 190N lifejacket. Launched at the end of 2009, the new Crewfit 190N is compact, lightweight and hardwearing. It has been designed to outperform both the existing legislation and the newly introduced standard BSEN ISO 12402. The news of EA's interest in the Crewfit 190N comes on the back of Cosalt and Crewsaver securing major contracts with the organisation in 2009. The agreements to supply operational staff with lifejackets and a range of workwear were renewed for a further three years, further strengthening a relationship that extends back to the 1990s. All lifejackets are supplied with a full service contract. Crewsaver also run care and maintenance courses to train dedicated Environment Agency staff in how to check and rearm lifejackets between

the normal 12-month service intervals. If the trials of the Crewfit 190N are successful it will most likely be phased in over time to replace the Crewfit 150N jackets. Moving head office Cosalt is relocating its Head Office to modern new premises on a green field site. The new offices are on the western outskirts of Grimsby on the town's prestigious Europarc development at: Origin 4, Genesis Park, Origin Way, Grimsby DN37 9TZ. The relocation means that for the first time in the company's 130-year history its head office will be sited away from Grimsby Docks. www.cosalt.com

Protecting Iceland’s rescue service during THAT volcano Members of Iceland’s voluntary rescue service – Ice-Sar – have been issued with new operational PPE manufactured with GORE-TEX® fabric, delivering the highest standards of protection and comfort, as they conduct operations in response to the recent volcanic eruptions. The new garments have been supplied by specialist Swedish workwear manufacturer, Taiga, who worked closely with Ice-Sar to develop a suit comprising shell jacket and trousers made of GORE-TEX® Pro Shell fabric and a jacket and hat made of WINDSTOPPER® soft-shell material. The suit is breathable and provides maximum protection against wind and rain with a high degree of comfort. Best value Jon Ingi Sigvaldson, of Ice-Sar, said, “We chose Taiga and GORE-TEX® fabrics because Taiga were able to design the garments to ensure that they offered best value. Our members work on an entirely non-profit-making basis and pay for their

equipment themselves, so we have to be able to offer them equipment that really lasts. Taiga and Gore listened to us and created a suit meets the specific needs of our tough work environment.” Jonas Rydholm, of Taiga, said, “Ice-Sar were very specific in their requirements and wanted a garment that was lightweight and easy to pack, but at the same time would be hard wearing and able to withstand extreme weather conditions.” Ice-Sar chose GORE-TEX® Pro Shell outer fabric with a Micro Grid lamination on the inside for the outer shell jacket. The Pro Shell material is thin but very tough and has a polyamide outer layer to increase its strength. The thin Micro Grid lining makes it harder wearing and improves comfort. Ice-Sar members now wear a jacket made of WINDSTOPPER® soft-shell material under the outer garment, which provides excellent protection against the elements during strenuous activities. The soft shell jacket is designed in exactly the same colours as the shell jacket. www.gore.com

Emergency Services Times May 2010


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Public order boots are in Control The new Control boot is now available in men's and ladies’ sizes and is currently being offered to police forces nationwide for purchase or trial.

Goliath Footwear has launched the most flexible and comfortable public order boot approved to the public order footwear standard BS7971-5:2004. The company aimed to produce a tough, protective anti-riot boot that would be flexible enough to drive in. So using technical skill learned by supplying the military sector, the public order boot was designed with a dual density rubber (DDR) sole unit which is durable and tough enough to withstand instances of heat (300°C) and contaminant such as petrol, but flexible and comfortable enough to wear for long periods. Coupled with this is an Gordon Peace, of Goliath Footwear, with Julie Sandbrook, of NWFS.

Goliath ‘Control’

North East chooses Lion’s Pro-Tek Max

innovative ‘Lenzie’ puncture resistant textile midsole with 100% foot coverage offering the best flexibility and protection versus steel. A cushioned open-cell PU footbed and deep padded soft collar provide further comfort features. The public order boot protects from missiles and other hazards by way of a resilient steel toe-cap and a cut resistant material running around the outside of the boot and across the front. All laces and thread are flame retardant and all seams are downward facing to aid petrol run off. Ankles are protected by both shock absorbing disks and a reinforced heel counter for better stability and support.

Goliath takes Positive Action Networking Women in Fire Service (NWFS) aims to improve diversity within the fire and rescue service. The group recently approached Goliath Footwear to help with its Positive Action recruitment initiatives, such as ‘have a go days’ where individuals have the opportunity to put on a uniform, try out ladder climbing, wearing breathing apparatus and other physical activities to get a real feel for the job of the firefighter. Goliath can make structural firefighter boots in smaller sizes suitable for women who want to work as firefighters and has supplied NWFS with some footwear, giving women a chance to feel comfortable, well protected and empowered from the very start of their experience with the fire and rescue service. Steve Hall, Sales and Marketing Director, Goliath Footwear, says, “We make specialist footwear from size two to 15 to cater for all individuals in the fire and rescue service. We are delighted to demonstrate this capability by sponsoring the NWFS in their work.” www.goliath.co.uk

Clothing solutions from Sugden & Sons

Fire and rescue services in the North East have chosen Lion Apparel’s Pro-Tek Max suit to protect their firefighters. The contract was recently awarded after an extensive tender process led by Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service. The new kit offers high levels of protection and comfort for the wearer and will be issued to approximately 2000 firefighters in Durham and Darlington, Northumberland and Tyne and Wear fire and rescue services. The Pro-Tek Max suit incorporates a PBI® 220g worsted gold outer fabric, and a waterproof, breathable CROSSTECH® Fireblocker® moisture barrier. The garments also utilise a unique new proprietary lining system, developed by Lion, which uses a special wicking technology to remove moisture and heat from the body. Alex McAllister, Product Development Manager, Lion Apparel Systems UK, said, “We are delighted to have won this contract and look forward to working in close partnership with the fire and rescue services in the North East to ensure that they benefit from our high standards of customer care. Their firefighters will be protected by state of the art PPE that will enhance operational duty without compromising personal protection.”

Wm Sugden & Sons has been manufacturing garments of the highest quality since 1869, establishing an enviable reputation through innovation and technical expertise. For many years the company has been a major supplier of shirts and uniforms to the emergency services, both in bulk and through its managed services, establishing a position as one of the UK’s foremost corporate clothing suppliers. Wm Sugden is innovative in its design and technology systems and will work with customers to find the right clothing solutions. By fully understanding the role that a garment plays and the environment in which it is used, enables the company to design and develop the product to meet and exceed customers’ expectations. The company was the first in the UK to offer managed services, tailoring kit to suit each clients’ requirements, and also introduced the first website ordering system for the fire and rescue sector – including real-time internet ordering. Acreddited to ISO 9001:2008, Wm Sugden is a past winner of the BCIA (British Corporate Industry Association) awards for garments which are ‘fit for purpose’ within the emergency services and continues to deliver the best in clothing and customer care to its existing and potential customers.

www.lionapparel.co.uk

www.wm-sugden.co.uk

Emergency Services Times May 2010


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Rescue PPE for HART paramedics Hazardous Area Response Teams (HARTs) across the country are being equipped with Bristol’s specialist technical rescue PPE to allow these teams to work in ‘hot zones’ (inner cordon) within a major incident. Bristol has become an approved supplier to the Department of Health further facilitating the procurement process as other HARTs gear up to become operational.

The two-piece ensemble incorporates a light green outershell with detachable GORE-TEX® CROSSTECH liner providing added flexibility and protection against rain, oil spillages and bloodborne pathogens. The distinctive new ensemble, which is easily identifiable by police and fire crew

from other ambulance personnel, also has the individual NHS crest embroidered on the coat to enhance the wearer’s visual identity. The HART programme currently incorporates two components, the incident response unit (IRU) and urban search and rescue (USAR), for which the new Bristol protective clothing is suitable. Its introduction, coupled with appropriate training, will allow ambulance crews, paramedics, clinicians and other specialists in the teams to play a full role at the front line of incidents knowing that they are fully protected. Meets operational needs Since the East Midlands Ambulance Service took the decision to equip its HART with Bristol protective garments last summer, the new kit has been delivered and has been in service since the autumn of 2009. Keith Sharpe, HART Trainer for the East Midlands Ambulance Service, said, “Having now had some six months’ experience with the new technical rescue garments we are pleased with their suitability for our operational needs

Emergency Services Times May 2010

and are getting positive reports back from the team. An ongoing evaluation process for the garments will help inform the further development of the PPE to enhance and fine-tune its performance for replacement products in the future. “The two-piece design, which zips together to form a one-piece suit when required, is especially useful in providing additional wearer safety when required and in USAR conditions. Our female team members like the flexibility of the two garments which have added benefits in allowing the jacket only to be worn for warmth in nonoperational conditions and which also reduces the cost of ownership in cases where only one piece is damaged or needs replacement.” Contracts signed Supply contracts have now also been signed with HARTs in the West Midlands, North East, North West, Yorkshire, South East Coast and East of England. The garments will be delivered and deployed during the spring and summer of 2010. The ambulance service national training facility is working towards providing standardised training for all UK HARTs. The training school has recently purchased Bristol’s HART technical rescue PPE to equip trainees during their emergency preparedness training. www.bristoluniforms.co.uk


22 | PPE PRODUCT INFORMATION

Body armour

The G Tech Vest body armour is a joint development between two UK companies with very strong credentials for the life protection market: P2i, whose technology was originally developed to make soldiers' protective clothing more effective against chemical attack; and Global Armour, which has been at the leading edge of product innovation in the armour industry for over 30 years. The vest employs new lightweight materials, both in the physical armour itself and the fabric that forms the armour into a garment. P2i’s technology reduces weight by avoiding the need for bulky durable water repellents and increases comfort by preserving the natural airflow and drape of the garment material. The technology creates a nanoscopic protective polymer layer, one thousand times thinner than a human hair, over the whole garment, including seams and stitching. When oil or water encounters this, it forms beads and simply rolls off instead of being absorbed. This prevents the ingress of external contaminants and encourages evaporated perspiration to flow out, helping wearers to feel more comfortable in the most challenging performance conditions. www.p2ilabs.com www.globalarmour.com

LFB’s new PPE

London Fire Brigade (LSE) has supplied its 6000 operational firefighters with a new integrated fire kit supplied by Bristol Uniforms. The new blue fire kit was selected following rigorous testing and

evaluation, including trials by brigade staff. Every piece of the new kit has been designed to integrate with each other and is fully compatible with all other equipment used by the brigade at incidents. The new kit comprises: Ergotech tunic and leggings, Eagle ETF20 fire hood, Southcombe Firemaster X Fusion glove, Jolly Firefighter leather boots and Hunter Firefighter 4000 rubber boots. Also, in a first for the brigade, London’s firefighters now wear the MSA Gallet F1SF (standard) or F1E (large size) helmet. The kit was delivered over a four-week period to watches when on their day duty and a computer-based system was devised to track delivery of the new kit and monitor the replacement process for kit that no longer fitted.

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was designed with the fewest number of components of any fire helmet available today. This means ease of disassembly and maintenance and a much lower total cost of ownership over the life of the helmet. www.frontlineproducts.co.uk

Cut resistant fabric

any portable radio device. Unsurpassed voice clarity, rugged, quick fit connectors and easy operation make these the ideal solution for surf rescue, search and rescue, coastguard, fire and rescue, police forces and ambulance services. The helmet, contactor microphone and earpiece PTT (push to talk) combination is ideal for noisy and swift water environments, allowing a hands-free operation while actually in the water. www.rtssar.com www.radio-telecom.com

Stationwear jacket

www.bristoluniforms.com

Fire helmet

In partnership with its UK and Ireland distributor Frontline Emergency Products, Bullard introduces the latest in fire helmet design and technology with its newest model: MAGMA, which affords the individual firefighter the flexibility to configure a helmet to his or her exact requirements. At under 1.4kg MAGMA is the lightest helmet available certified to EN443:2008 and is available in two shell configurations – Type A, Half Shell or Type B, Full Shell. The helmet offers firefighters a high degree of wearing comfort, featuring a padded head ring, anchored in the rear by the Bullard ratchet sizing mechanism, which provides the wearer the ability to make comfort adjustments at five different points. An X-shaped nape strap and a four-way adjustable chinstrap add further to the firefighter’s ability to obtain a stable and comfortable fit. MAGMA’s unique mask adapter design accommodates all of the leading brands of two-point respirator masks and is spacious enough to accommodate mask harnesses. The helmet also features eye protectors and a three-dimensional visor and accommodates a variety of communications and lighting accessories. The helmet’s inner compartment is well protected from the heat, flames, sparks and fluids that are part of daily fire fighting activities. MAGMA

A UK manufacturer of bespoke knife, bite and slash resistant garments, has developed a cut-resistant fabric, no thicker than that of a normal t-shirt. Cut-Tex Pro is a groundbreaking combination of high-tenacity, highmodulus polyethylene fibres – combined with several other ‘technical fibres’ – weaved by special high-density knitting machines, resulting in an outstanding cut-resistant fabric. It has been developed and manufactured by PPSS, based in Ripon, North Yorkshire. Cut-Tex Pro has passed the stringent British Standard 388 6.2 Level 5 – the highest level possible for textiles. www.ppss-group.com

Rescue comms helmet range

Radio Telecom Services Ltd has been appointed as the sole distributor for a new rescue communications helmet range. Designed to be fully IP67/68 compliant and using contactor microphone technology, these helmets are lightweight to reduce neck stress, totally waterproof and configurable to

Emergency Services Times May 2010

The UK fire and rescue service now has the option to choose stationwear manufactured with GORE-TEX® fabric as a result of a partnership between WL Gore & Associates (UK) Ltd and Hunter Apparel Solutions Ltd. Hunter Apparel has created a blouson style jacket made with three-layer GORE-TEX® fabric as part of the framework contract for stationwear and workwear with the South East region fire and rescue services. Any UK fire and rescue service can purchase from the contract. Available in brigade navy blue or black, there is a zipper option on the garment that allows the wearer to add in a fleece liner for colder conditions. The wearer benefits from an extremely comfortable garment that is breathable and waterproof – even in the most severe weather conditions. www.hunterapparelsolutions.com www.gore.com


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PPE PRODUCT INFORMATION | 23

Hybrid shirt

South West based RTG International, a specialist in textile and contract manufacturing, has created a high performance garment specifically developed and designed for the emergency services. The new hybrid shirt incorporates the company's antibacterial Coolskyn Plus technology, an innovative wicking sweat management fabric, in its main body. A long and short sleeve option, alongside a formal polycotton collar for neckwear, completes the official ensemble to provide comfort minus bulk and climate regulation beneath body armour. Created for extreme working conditions, RTG's Skyns range of fabrics are breathable, lightweight, harness nanotechnology for superior stain, wind, water and oil resistance, control body climate, keep the skin dry and provide a boost to flexibility and performance. www.rtg.co.uk

Hazmat suit

The ONESuitŽ Pro line of gas-tight chemical suits from Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics includes chemical protective hazmat equipment for fire, chemical, military and industrial organisations. The suits’ unique singleskin design enhances user comfort and maneuverability while providing the highest level of protection for those working in hazardous environments. www.plastics.saint-gobain.com

Emergency Services Times May 2010


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Emergency Services Times May 2010


PROFILE | 25

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It’s a dirty job and NACSC members will do it Ultima Cleaning Ltd has been cleaning crime scenes for the past nine years and during this time the need for quick call out times and national coverage meant that the company required help to service the growing demand. Following initial calls to other cleaning firms it became evident that there was a requirement for a national training body for this specialised cleaning service. This led Ben Giles from Ultima to form The National Academy of Crime Scene Cleaners (NACSC), in February 2009. become licensed waste carriers, insured, inoculated against Hepatitis B and tooled up as per NACSC recommendations. When these standards are achieved members are then added to the NACSC national network of operatives. Trained, insured and prepared NACSC has members in Wales, England, Scotland and both Southern and Northern Ireland. This network of trained, insured and prepared members allows the NACSC to now have a twohour call out throughout the UK. Members have worked on behalf of police forces, housing associations, undertakers, solicitors, rail networks and councils throughout the UK.

Involved in the service provided by Ultima Cleaning Ltd at many scenes of crime was hypodermic needle collection, bio-hazard waste removal, maggot and fly infestation removal, floor removal following decomposition and body fluid, body matter removal, custody cell and vehicle decontamination. Hence, using all his previous experience, Ben documented safe systems of work to cope with all the scenes and situations he had come across, from situations where he had uncovered decomposed bodies from litter for the police to simple hypodermic needle collections in parks and schools. Academy The course developed and Ben appointed Mark Baxter as Academy Manager to get the academy up and running. Together Ben and Mark

developed the course and found a venue in Bristol where they had access to fantastic training rooms close to the building that The National Academy of Crime Scene Cleaners leases to provide practical training. Ben and Mark invited other professionals in specific fields to help train members: Professor Moray Anderson, a forensic entomologist from Killgerm; Julie Roberts from Chemspec Europe; Joseph Bath, an expert in professional floor removal; Wayne Voller, an H+S trainer; and Vanessa Hood, from Contain-ER; all train in specialised areas and provide a well-balanced, practical course. Mark has worked hard to ensure the course is the only one of its kind recognised by the Open College Network, and as such certificated to national standards in education. After intensive training members are requested to

Ben and Mark have secured a contract to use NACSC members to provide a rapid response to South Gloucestershire Council’s Street Care division to provide a two-hour call out, 365 days a year to clean and sanitise roads and embankments following serious RTAs. With over 160 trained members in the UK to date, the NACSC has probably become the largest and fastest national provider of these specialised service in the UK.

The National Academy of Crime Scene Cleaners is proud to be exhibiting at The Emergency Services Show 2010 (www.ess2010.com). Both Ben and Mark will be attending and would welcome any questions you may have. Together with the standard exhibition stand the NACSC will also set up a practical area where members will show the potential dangers of cleaning up body fluid without trained operatives. www.nacsc.co.uk

Emergency Services Times May 2010


26 | CIVIL CONTINGENCIES

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RADSAFE – providing technical support to the emergency services The transport of radioactive material is safely undertaken on a daily basis within Great Britain. The materials transported include radiopharmaceuticals, nuclear fuel and radioactive material used in industry. The major nuclear industry consignors of radioactive material have come together to establish a Transport Emergency Response scheme – RADSAFE. A regulatory regime exists in Great Britain based on international regulation and guidance. The primary legislation in Great Britain is the Carriage of Dangerous Goods and use of Transportable Pressure Equipment Regulations 2007. Consignors and carriers work together to ensure compliance with the relevant legislation. Development In developing RADSAFE a number of important decisions were made at the start of the process: ‘Keep it short and simple’; mirror existing transport plans; identify who the customers are; establish a single point of contact; guarantee a response; and ensure nuclear industry response is suitably qualified and experienced. Prior to RADSAFE a number of transport emergency plans existed: IFTFEP (Irradiated Fuel Transport Emergency Plan for England and Wales), SNIFTFEP (Scottish Nuclear Irradiated Fuel Transport Plan); and NIREP (Nuclear Industries Road/Rail Emergency Plan). RADSAFE combined the most effective parts of these plans under a single scheme. Initially, it was important to ensure that the scheme was widely known and that it was replacing existing plans. Initially RADSAFE established a training package for emergency services, which has been successfully delivered to over 3000 responders. RADSAFE has now developed a training package for nuclear industry responders. Since then, RADSAFE has developed a range of support documentation to ensure consistent standards and a website that contains information which may be of use to emergency services and other emergency response agencies.

RADSAFE works with the emergency services at the scene of the incident to provide a response to its members’ consignments.

The key aim of RADSAFE is to provide technical support to the emergency services to allow them to make the area safe radiologically.

training to both operators and emergency services and relevant and appropriate documentation.” On average, RADSAFE gets called out about once a year. One of the incidents, in late 2007, was a call to Sunderland Station. A problem with a train’s flatrol meant a potential risk of fire. As the flatrol was carrying a fuel flask, RADSAFE were alerted and a representative from the nearest RADSAFE operator attended. Although there was no problem with the fuel flask, the incident highlighted a different issue. As the diesel locomotive came to a halt, its smoke set off the station’s smoke alarms. These, in turn, triggered a pre-determined response of six fire tenders from the local brigade and the immediate evacuation of the shopping centre over the station.

Terry Kelly, who acts as the operational focus for RADSAFE, explained how RADSAFE works. He said, “Every year, there are between one and two million movements of material from fuel flasks to industrial radioactive material and radiopharmaceuticals. Every consignment has to be covered by appropriate emergency arrangements. RADSAFE provides a 24/7 call centre (0800 834153) to respond to any transport incidents, Response The key aim of RADSAFE is to provide technical support to the emergency services to allow them to make the area safe radiologically. To facilitate this RADSAFE has developed a core set of arrangements which ensure an effective response: a single notification number – 0800 834153, costeffective response and consigning owner responsibility for ‘clean up’.

As with all such incidents, there was extensive follow-up with the local authority and emergency services, to identify lessons to be learned. On this occasion, there was a key lesson with regard to diesel engines stopping in Sunderland Railway station. www.radsafe.org.uk

Emergency Services Times May 2010


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28 | CIVIL CONTINGENCIES

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Interoperability: recognising diversity Since August 2009, RUSI has been revisiting research originally carried out in 2006 into interoperability between emergency responders. As we head into the final analysis stage of the research project, one thing is clear: emergency response is a much more complicated landscape now than it has been in the past. The first stage of the research, carried out from September to December of last year, consisted of 25 interviews with senior practitioners and policymakers. This was followed, from December 2009 to March 2010, by an online survey that added the views of 80 more respondents to the project. Events such as flooding and severe weather in particular, as well as emergencies such as pandemic flu, that affect large areas of the country require a response not only from Category 1 and 2 Responders, but also from the many organisations that support them. This can include volunteer organisations such as St John Ambulance, the British Red Cross and the RNLI, as well as groups and organisations that have a role to play in the long-term recovery and support of affected communities, be they social workers or insurance companies. Exactly what that role is, however, and how each organisation is able to fulfil it, can be very different. Understanding these differences is vital if we are to provide appropriate frameworks to enable everyone to work together. In the past, interoperability has tended to focus on technological solutions – ensuring that all agencies are working on the same, or at least compatible, hardware and software. What have perhaps been given less attention are the human factors that underpin the use of this technology.

This includes not only operational procedures, although work such as the NPIA Guidance on multi-agency interoperability is extremely valuable, but also even softer issues, such as how do you include organisations in the response who no-one expected to be there? Organisations who may not have the security clearance others take for granted, for example, who cannot easily maintain rotas outside of 9-5 office hours, or who may have only one representative across five or six Local Resilience Fora boundaries, with not enough time to give their attention to each one equally. Whether responders arrive at the scene on foot or specialist vehicles, or whether they need to be at the scene at all, or can be communicated with remotely, are also issues that warrant further explanation. Understanding how these differences affect the part each responder organisation plays in the response is more important than trying to fit square pegs into the round hole of a ‘one size fits all’ response. Flexibility needed The research RUSI has carried out suggests that interoperability frameworks may need to be more flexible than they are at present. We need to be more aware that secure networks may shut out people we need to communicate with, as well as those we don't want listening in. Expensive

Emergency Services Times May 2010

equipment may be out of the range of volunteer groups who provide vital surge capacity, or impact negatively on limited budgets that would be better spent elsewhere. Technology continues to evolve at such a speed that it is difficult for everyone to keep up, and virtually impossible for everyone to keep up at the same pace, which suggests that tying even the full-time professional responders to very specific systems has risks, before we even consider the potential is has to exclude other agencies. One thing is certain: before deciding how we interoperate, we need a better understanding of the human factors affecting the emergency management community, from the planning phase through to response and on to recovery. Until we invest sufficient time into understand this fully at the beginning we risk producing outcomes that will never match the real needs of the end-users. www.rusi.org

For more information on Communications Interoperability in a Crisis 2: Human Factor and Organisational Processes please contact Jennifer on jenniferc@rusi.org Author: Jennifer Cole is Head of Emergency Management at the Royal United Services Institute


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CIVIL CONTINGENCIES | 29

British Transport Police preparing for today as well as tomorrow With fewer than 800 days to go to the start of the London 2012 Olympics, British Transport Police (BTP) is well advanced in planning for its biggest ever policing operation. BTP will be involved with more than 30 Olympic venues across Britain and the force’s small Civil Contingencies Unit has a major role to play. However, much of what they are doing to ensure BTP is fully fit for 2012 falls squarely within business as usual. While the Olympics provide a focus, emergency and contingency planning is something that is very much part of our day job. We are currently involved in revising our Major Incident Manual and commissioning entirely new major incident vehicles. The Major Incident Manual is being updated to incorporate new developments, such as the advent of the Rail Accident Investigation Branch, who have an investigatory role to play at many major rail incidents, and the amalgamation of BTP’s control rooms with two, in London and Birmingham, now covering the whole of Britain. New vehicles are needed as part of a planned replacement programme.

Our officers often have to operate in remote locations, so the ability to provide a mobile support capability to officers operating on the ground can be of great benefit. Enhanced capability None of this is being funded from our Olympic budget. We need to replace and enhance our capability anyway and for the vehicles we are taking the best from other people’s experience and building on that. This will be based on technology that has been proven in the field.

The focus is on using technology that will genuinely help BTP perform better during an incident. Satellite communications in incident vehicles will give immediate access to vital systems, wherever the incident scene may be instantly available emergency and contingency plans, and GIS data, allow scene commanders to deploy appropriate resources. BTP is a national police force. We cover the whole of England, Scotland and Wales and need to

be able to set up a forward control point or command post, an instant office on wheels, anywhere. Those geographical challenges mean that we need multiple major incident vehicles permanently based around the country. In support of major incident vehicles, BTP has trailers that transport vital equipment, such as lighting and clothing, to a scene. They also have to be capable of instant deployment and are being upgraded as part of the review. With an increasingly busy rail system, there is growing pressure to reduce the timeframe for recovery following a major or critical incident. Recovering the rail system is always a priority. A perturbation to one part of the system can reverberate down the network quickly creating problems elsewhere. Recovery time during the Olympics will be a major issue. Events are time critical and at peak times, trains will be arriving into the Olympic Park stations every 13.5 seconds. Although available for emergencies, BTP’s new major incident vehicles and equipment will also be available for large events and critical incidents, increasing flexibility of operations generally. Our officers often have to operate in remote locations, so the ability to provide a mobile support capability to officers operating on the ground can be of great benefit. Olympic planning The Olympics have brought new responsibilities for my staff and me in the form of Olympic exercise planning, but we are also involved in regional and national resilience planning and developing and implementing BTP’s business continuity strategy. Business continuity planning is a key part of our work.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

We are currently the only police force using business continuity software supplied by NonVerba – that is allowing us to plan effectively as well as to review and maintain our plans. All of this is externally hosted in a secure environment, which give us complete resilience.

Because we are the first down this road, it has been a learning experience for everyone, so we have been able to influence the development of the software so it meets the needs of a national police force. www.btp.police.uk

Author: Chief Inspector John Thompson, Unit Head, BTP


30 | TECHNOLOGY

In brief . . . Lancashire Constabulary is implementing Quest Software’s virtual desktop solution, vWorkspace, to manage police officer access to its restricted and confidential networks. The solution will give Lancashire Constabulary centralised control of sensitive data such as crime scene images, criminal profiles and case details. Quest’s technology ensures that individual officers receive access based on their level of authorisation. Aside from enhanced security, this centralised approach also simplifies the maintenance and support of desktops, and helps to improve network performance, which in turn leads to a more cost effective operation. www.quest-software.co.uk /vworkspace

With new legislation in place which means heavy fines of up to £500,000 for organisations that breach data security rules, IT security solutions provider ISEEU Global is calling for a ban on the use of USB memory sticks and other portable media used to store and transmit personal data in the police service. ISEEU warns that failure to address the issue of data loss in the police service once and for all will cost forces hundreds of thousands of pounds and put confidential files and sensitive intelligence at risk. If a total ban on USB memory sticks is not achievable, then ISEEU is calling for, at the very least, cigarette-style government warnings on packaging to warn users of the data security risks.

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Portable jammer system for Road safety aid Systems has introduced a new better security in crowded places Novus road safety product that will be the

A portable jammer connected to a pop-up tent creates an instant protective faraday cage to prevent the remote initiation of a radio-controlled bomb. Electronic counter measures (ECM) specialists at Kirintec have been working on a range of novel ways to get their jammers closer to a suspect device so that they can focus small amounts of power on blocking out the signal which will detonate it. The latest addition to the company’s REBUS counter-IED inhibition system is a selferecting enclosure.

www.cybertech-int.com

www.kirintec.com

Panansonic expands its suite of mobile computing solutions With its wireless connectivity and rugged portability, the Toughbook CF19 mobile computing solution has liberated police officers from having to make journeys back to base to complete time-consuming paperwork. The CF-19 Toughbook solution has been developed through 14 years of experience in the ruggedised personal computer market.

www.iseeuglobal.com

Gloucestershire Police has installed a CyberTech Pro voice recording solution. It is providing rapid access to all telephone and radio communications that may have taken place with the force’s central control room and contact centre and is helping to enhance detection and clear-up rates, both in Gloucestershire and across the UK. CyberTech Pro’s browser-based user interface and flexible search criteria enable calls to be located in minutes. Recordings can be copied onto disk for maximum sound quality or instantly e-mailed to investigating officers, charging review lawyers or directly to Courts where criminal cases are being heard. The system is also helping to identify and track the incidence of malicious 999 callers.

The REBUS counter-IED inhibition system is designed primarily for use by first responders who find a suspect device and want to neutralise the threat while they wait for the Bomb Squad or ECM team to arrive. Designed with non-ECM-specialist security staff in mind, the low power jammer is very simple to operate and requires no training. Bomb disposal technicians can then x-ray through the flimsy tent wall, and if need be fire a disruptor through it. Meanwhile, all normal communications in the near vicinity remain unaffected by the jammer (eg walkie-talkies, UHF, VHF or TETRA radios, air traffic control systems, company wireless networks, and public mobile phone networks). Kirintec’s C-IED jammer system is already in use by police forces in six countries, with a further 15 countries currently conducting trials.

With the option to include 3G, accessing e-mails, websites and cloud computing sites means police officers in the field have continuous access to the same information available in the station. Officers have all the information they need at the scene of a crime and lose less time on travel and paperwork. As a result, police offers have increased their visibility on the street. In the rain, the Toughbook IP54 dust and moisture ingression resistance rating makes it possible for fully

ruggedised models to access up to 70 policing applications and communicate information whether it is on spreadsheet, in an e-mail or even a video file. With all Toughbook solutions coming with a service time of just five working days from send off to return as standard, these mobile solutions will not only free up police officers, they will reduce equipment downtime and lower the total cost of ownership.

perfect aid for the emergency services if an accident occurs while on call and they need to prove that they were not to blame for the accident.

The Novus Eye Plus integrates high performance wide-angle video technology with the latest GPS technology.

The Novus Eye Plus integrates high performance wide-angle video technology with the latest GPS technology. The system has an integrated G sensor that will automatically save the data in the event of an accident. The Eye Plus comes with one camera as standard but will support an optional second camera. This second camera can be fitted to record information on the rear of the vehicle or, in the case of emergency vehicles, inside to record incidents that might endanger the driver.

The G sensor provides information in three dimensions from which it is possible to determine from which direction the vehicle was struck and who was responsible.

Mobile ID solution Panasonic launched its revolutionary three-in-one identity checking solution on 12 May, designed for mobile border control, policing and security forces. The Person Identification Mini Dock (PIMD) includes an OCR and RFID Reader as well as Fingerprint Scanner and connects to the Toughbook CF-U1 ultra mobile PC device. A lighter two-in-one version without the fingerprint scanner is also available. Compact, rugged and lightweight, the PIMD is ideal for mobile workers, such as border control personnel, who need to check identities while on the move. The PIMD is a co-development from Panasonic and DESKO in a rugged case with MIL-STD and IP certification. It also delivers the highest security standards with separate power management and a standby mode.

In the event of an accident, the G sensor automatically provides a signal such that the data 10 seconds before the accident and 20 seconds after the accident is saved to the integrated SD flash memory card. Alternatively there is an emergency button that will act as a trigger and record information 10 seconds before and 20 seconds after the button press. The Eye Plus provides high quality video data together with invaluable GPS data, which includes speed, position and direction of travel. The G sensor provides information in three dimensions from which it is possible to determine from which direction the vehicle was struck and who was responsible. Some insurance companies have said they will accept this as evidence in the event of a motor accident and, if not the policyholder’s fault, will waive any policy excesses. This can result in massive savings for drivers of emergency vehicles or doctors on call and protect no claims bonuses.

www.toughbook.eu

www.novusgps.com

Emergency Services Times May 2010


COMPANY PROFILE | 31

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Innovative fire engine hits the road Leading specialist vehicle manufacturer W H Bence Coachworks is readying itself for a nationwide roadshow showcasing its latest water tender demonstrator to fire and rescue services across the country. Starting in early autumn, the W H Bence team will be travelling the length and breadth of the country giving fire officers the opportunity to fully test out the innovative new vehicle. W H Bence’s commitment to the fire industry has been further demonstrated after securing a place on the Firebuy framework agreement for Specials, and intends to build on this with the Water Tenders 2011 agreement. Fired up for the future Oliver Brown, Sales Director at W H Bence, comments, “The UK has a steady market for fire engines and currently there are only three manufacturers in the UK which produce them. Due to the pressures of supplying these, the range and quality that many fire services are offered often falls short of what is required. We are looking to buck this trend with our water tender demonstrator, which provides a premium quality product with integrated new technology. “Coming into the fire service framework we hope will give fire services across the UK the opportunity to have the variety they require without it impacting on the quality. We are the ‘new boys on the block’, looking at the industry with a fresh set of eyes. It is about integrating new technology and providing fire services with more choice and flexibility from the vehicles used on a daily basis to save lives.”

The specification of the new fire engine is: • Volvo FLL15 4.1m Wheelbase chassis • Six man crew cab • Co-polymer body with integral 1800 litre water tank • 2000 litre fire pump • Stowage system to meet EN 1846 and health & safety requirements • Latest CAN electrical systems • LED lighting • Standard specification tailored to suit individual brigade’s specific requirements • Body mounted to chassis using chassis manufacturers approved method and equipment • Superior design, fabrication and finishing teams. Specialist manufacturer W H Bence is one of Europe's leading specialist vehicle manufacturers, creating mobile spaces for a range of sectors including the emergency services,

W H Bence has gained experience in creating mobile rescue and command units for the fire and rescue service having worked previously with Royal Berkshire, South and West Yorkshire, Kent and Wiltshire fire and rescue services. The fire and rescue service is an integral part of a community and W H Bence has an ongoing commitment to ensure that it provides quality vehicles that meet individual specifications for different UK regions. The company is proven in delivering emergency service vehicles and its manufacturing skills ensure that each fire and rescue service has a tailor-made fire engine to meet specific needs.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

medical industry and motorsport. The company was set up in 1983, but its roots lead all the way back to the early 1900s. Steeped in history and with a wealth of experience, but with an eye for new technologies, it has seen significant growth in both size and reputation over recent years. Its focus remains on vehicle build quality and offers in-house expertise and the design, fabrication and finishing processes exceed industry standards. The company employs some of the most highly skilled designers, fabricators and finishers in the industry. The quality of staff has been recognised and W H Bence holds the Gold Standard for Benchmark Q customer satisfactions and also achieved ISO 9001 accreditation based on customer satisfaction levels and company quality control.

If you are interested in this project and would like more information about the roadshow please contact Oliver Brown or Keith Barton via email: oliver@whbence.co.uk or keith@whbence.co.uk. www.whbence.co.uk


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National Association of Police Fleet Managers Conference and Exhibition 2010 The 37th National Association of Police Fleet Managers (NAPFM) Conference and Exhibition will take place at a new venue, the Exec Peterborough exhibition centre, from 7-8 September 2010. This year’s event, which carries the theme ‘Supporting the services’, will bring together over 150 exhibiting companies showing a wide range of police, ambulance and paramedic vehicles. Also on display will be the latest in specialist vehicle technology, including mobile data, ANPR, light bars, sirens and vehicle telematics technology. NAPFM was formed in 1986 after receiving approval from the Association of Chief Police officers (ACPO). The association was borne as a result of a Police Fleet Engineers Seminar hosted by Wiltshire Constabulary, which had been running annually for over 13 years. The annual seminar became the NAPFM Conference and Exhibition, widely acknowledged as one of the best emergency service transport events in Europe, attracting delegates from around the world. Collaborative approach The NAPFM membership, working with the National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA), ACPO, and the Office of Government Commerce (OGC), has in recent years been extremely proactive in realising the many benefits of a collaborative approach to police fleet management. solutions, with Ford recently announcing its new standardised police specification Focus model beat car.

The NAPFM will continue to explore the possibility of using frameworks established by other government fleet departments where there are clear and tangible benefits in doing so for UK police fleets, such as utilising the OGC Buying Solutions fuel card and lease vehicle arrangements, and where applicable the Home Office/OGC Buying Solutions short-term vehicle hire arrangements. The recent Home Office white paper – Protecting the public: supporting the police to succeed – highlighted the need for the standardisation of a UK ‘beat car’. This work had already been addressed by the NAPFM National Committee and membership who, working with both vehicle manufacturers and their respective ‘one-stop shop’ providers, has delivered a range of standardised patrol cars in recent years. One example of this is when Volvo launched its V70 Turn Key solution – designed as a pan-European patrol car – at the 2009 NAPFM Conference and Exhibition. Vauxhall, Ford, BMW and other vehicle manufacturers have also delivered their own

The NAPFM will continue to explore the possibility of using frameworks established by other government fleet departments where there are clear and tangible benefits in doing so for UK police fleets. Five-year strategy The NAPFM recently published its five-year strategy document, and its vision statement reads, ‘To provide and deliver the most economic, efficient and effective transport and logistics service to UK police forces’. In recent years there has been clear evidence of the association’s success in driving down the cost of running police fleets. Working in conjunction with NPIA procurement and, for certain elements of spend, OGC Buying Solutions, the NAPFM has

Emergency Services Times May 2010

delivered significant financial savings to the UK police service by setting in place a number of calloff framework arrangements. These include: vehicles, vehicle parts, tyres, vehicle disposal, light bars, glass – windscreens, and fuel – fuel cards. The total savings value against retail prices is in the region of £56.5m. Vehicles alone have contributed in excess of £36m. ‘Continued improvement’ is the NAPFM’s ethos. In its latest five-year strategic plan the association has set out a range of key performance indicators (KPIs) which will be monitored and challenged as part of an annual national benchmarking exercise. These KPIs include: ratio of vehicles to officers; fleet environmental carbon footprint; vehicle availability; vehicle reliability (by mileage); vehicle utilisation; fuel consumption; optimum fleet replacement cycle; and standard whole life cost. The association and its membership continue to develop and seek innovative fleet solutions through quality performance management, best value, and collaboration with its colleagues and partners in the other emergency services. Continued financial savings The NAPFM delivery of frameworks has created a model that will deliver the right products at the optimum price, and drive continued financial savings within the police fleet arena. Those attending this year’s event will be able to experience for themselves the work that has been driven over many years in the interest of reducing police fleet costs as well as promoting collaboration


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and standardisation. The NAPFM, event host and organiser Wiltshire Constabulary, the NPIA and ACPO should be truly proud of their achievements, which clearly prove that police fleet managers are already well advanced with regard to the Home Office’s white paper objectives. The NPIA/NAPFM procurement frameworks clearly show not only collaboration and joined-up thinking within the police service fleets, but also the ability to support the other emergency services.

For example, the Vehicle Procurement Framework allows for the UK fire and rescue services to utilise this particular arrangement for vehicle procurement, in addition the Vehicle Disposal Framework currently set in place with British Car Auctions is available for use by the NHS, also the emergency vehicle Blue Light/Lightbar Framework is open to all UK government authorities’ emergency service vehicle fleets.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

Environmental issues A number of forces have either operated or are in the process of operating environmentally friendly vehicles – this covers new Euro 5 diesel technology, Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG), hybrid as well as trials of electric vehicle technology. In particular, with the recent government Plugged in Places scheme, many authorities are looking at bidding for the funding of electric charging points and police fleets are having dialogue with vehicle manufacturers as well as their local authorities with regard to operating electric vehicle technology in certain aspects of policing. Hampshire Constabulary, for example, are working closely in collaboration with Hampshire County Council in their bid for the Plugged in Places scheme, involving private sector partnerships, public sector and the vehicle manufacturers (if successful this will encompass Hampshire and the Isle of Wight). Hampshire Constabulary recently went out to tender for a South East and South West regional vehicle accident repair contract, covering the Hampshire, Surrey, Sussex, Wiltshire and Dorset forces. This arrangement should enhance accident repair service provision, deal with risk management, health and safety, environmental as well as key performance issues, one being to drive down accident repair costs. www.napfmevent.org.uk

Author: John Bradley MBE, Fleet Manager Hampshire Constabulary and Press Officer for the NAPFM


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BMW updates best-selling motorcycle Market leader BMW officially launched a new R 1200 RT-P Authorities motorcycle factory-equipped with a RESPoNSe© warning equipment system at MINI plant in Oxford on 25 May. have pin prick LED lights to confirm when they are active. The rear panniers and radio box remain unchanged from the original motorcycle. After holding a series of user group meetings around the UK, the feedback on the top-loading rear panniers was so positive they were the natural choice for the new machine. Also carried over from the previous model is the factory installed auxiliary battery and split-charge system.

the most significant change comes with the new factory-fitted warning equipment system called RESPoNSe© BMW set about redesigning the best-selling R 1200 RT-P by improving the levels of rider comfort, ergonomics and weather protection. Matching these improvements with a new four-valve DOHC engine, they claim considerably improved levels of performance and torque. These changes are noticeable across the mid-range giving a smoother ride with much less vibration and torque steer. Additionally, changes to the gearbox means quicker and more precise gear selection.

also reduce the visual ‘clutter’ in the cockpit area. This change is as a direct response from UK police rider feedback. Increased functionality The RESPoNSe© warning equipment is connected to its own separately-powered network on the bike separating it from the main CANBus network that manages the engine and vehicle infrastructure. In the unlikely event of a simple electrical fault with the LED warning lights, the motorcycle itself does not become defective. All of the new warning equipment is fully tested by BMW AG through its regular product approval procedures including handling and stability testing. This means it has full manufacturer approval and raises an interesting question as to whether any other manufacturer can offer police, fire and rescue, and ambulance services a motorcycle that has not been converted from a civilian machine post-production. BMW maintains another benefit of developing factory-fitted equipment is the increased functionality. For example horn button scrolling and a bullhorn are part of the electronic twin siren system. Further to that the new lighting switches

Aerodynamic profile With a more aerodynamic profile and narrower front fairing, the motorcycle also looks more purposeful but the most significant change comes with the new factory-fitted warning equipment system called RESPoNSe©. High output front LED lights, an extendable rear LED beacon and powerful twin sirens are fitted on the production line. Glove-friendly switchgear is integrated with the standard vehicle controls and makes operating the RESPoNSe© warning equipment possible without removing your hand from the handlebar. As well as making life easier for the rider these new switches

Emergency Services Times May 2010

The auxiliary battery and split-charge system provides power to the service radio and emergency warning lights for up to eight hours eliminating the need to run the engine reducing CO2 output and fuel consumption of a vehicle at the scene of an incident. This helps to maintain the condition of the main vehicle battery meaning it should always be ready to start the motorcycle. The split-charge system will recharge the auxiliary battery while riding or can be connected to a CANBus compatible charger via the onboard charging socket on returning to base. Warranty and training Covered by the main BMW vehicle warranty, the new RESPoNSe© warning equipment can be repaired or replaced by an authorised BMW service point or by an Authority workshop with a warranty approved status. BMW technician training with BMW diagnostic equipment, tooling and direct parts supply are also available for authorities who wish to reduce operating and maintenance costs and increase vehicle availability. www.bmwauthorities.co.uk


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Livery providers announce merger Leading emergency service livery provider Kinetic Grafix and commercial fleet livery specialist Strypz have announced a merger. The move comes at a time when both companies, trading under the new name of Vehicle Livery Solutions (VLS), are experiencing strong demand for their products and services. With fleet operators focusing on gaining maximum value from their suppliers, the combined forces of both firms will provide strategic solutions which will be converted into cost savings and efficiencies of scale. Operating from a six-acre site on the outskirts of Beverley in East Yorkshire, while delivering a national service, VLS provides a ‘one-stop shop’ solution for fleet managers in both the public and private sectors. With a combined experience totalling in excess of a quarter of a century, any fleet manager will be hard-pushed to find a company with a greater knowledge and understanding of vehicle livery of all types.

“We are a very forward thinking company, and have a strategy in place which we will work to over the medium to long term. This strategy involves several new additions to our business which we believe will delivery further significant benefits to all of our customers. www.vehicleliverysolutions.co.uk

With investment having already taken place following the merger in machinery and processes, the company is now ideally placed to expand its operation and secure new business. “Merging these two East Yorkshire-based companies together makes total sense”, said Simon Hubbard, Managing Director. “Both companies have worked together in the past so prior to the merger had a good understanding of each other, plus they share a common aim of providing an unrivalled service to their customers whilst also keeping an eye on the competitiveness of their pricing. The entire team here from board level down have integrated extremely well and are all working to the same goal, namely exceptionally satisfied customers.

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One Box solution to vehicle installations The emergency services use a wide range of vehicles fitted with an array of equipment, much of which is retro fitted. Historically, this equipment was fitted by emergency service workshops. However, increasingly this work is now being undertaken by specialist vehicle installers. ‘plug and play’; simplified functionality; and liabilities better managed. The future The roadmap for the One Box Concept has been designed in three phases: 1. One Box Concept for 2008/9 – applying best practice 2. One Box Concept for 2010 – wired LAN 3. One Box Concept for 2013 – wireless LAN. These steps take account of both the development in technology and the likely timescales for vehicle manufacturers to develop new models. Since its launch in September 2009 the project has received exposure at several high profile events and continues to attract support and interest from within the UK and across Europe. CC Mick Gianassi, ACPO Head of Road Policing, said, “I see this as a great step forward in achieving the best possible police vehicle in terms of both capability and user safety. There will also, undoubtedly, be financial benefits for the service as we move towards a common standard package for police vehicles.”

Inside a police vehicle – demonstrating some of the One Box functionality.

Each item of equipment fulfils a particular role but, as each fitment is installed as a standalone device or system, this results in separate controls and wiring, duplication of components such as GPS, antenna etc and an increasingly cluttered and distracting cockpit for the driver. With the increasing pressure on vehicle space, the risk of conflict with other in-vehicle devices, together with the unrelenting opportunities to fit new applications into emergency vehicles and the need to drive down costs while maintaining a safe working environment, this piecemeal approach to vehicle installation is unsustainable. The solution Led by ACPO Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS), a consortium of stakeholders was formed to find a solution, initially for the police service but latterly this has included all of the emergency services. The solution became known as the ‘One Box Concept’. The consortium of about 50 partners includes: several police forces, police fleet

managers, the Police Federation, National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA), vehicle manufacturers, equipment manufacturers and specialist vehicle fitting specialists. The aim is to: • Create a better working environment • Define a criteria for a ‘single vehicle architecture’ • Produce a vehicle and driver management system. The concept is based on core vehicle architecture, using an emergency service CANBus (esCAN) to support all emergency service applications running on it and working alongside the vehicle manufacturers’ CANBus together with a wired Local Area Network (LAN) but ultimately migrating to a wireless LAN. There is also a managed power supply and common connection points at key locations in the vehicle. Where use is made of multiple components, safety will not be compromised. Key benefits include: safer and more efficient driving; increased competition for installation; significant cost savings; common connectivity –

Jim Hammond briefing Lord West at the recent Home Office Scientific Branch exhibition in Farnborough.

Chief Superintendent Jim Hammond, ACPO ITS, said, “This work has been delivered through a public private partnership, committed to making an improvement to the working conditions for operational users in their vehicles. Whilst the work is and remains challenging to deliver, it shows what can be achieved when organisations across government and the private sector work together with a common aim.” Further information on One Box can be obtained from Jim Hammond at: Robert.hammond@sussex.pnn.police.uk.

Exmed UK: a local company with a global reach Hereford-based Exmed provides medical training, support and equipment supply. As a means of complementing regional emergency healthcare provision and a way of building relationships with the local community, the company is launching a Medical Response Unit (MRU) Vehicle to provide pre-hospital healthcare support to the local community. Ged Healy, Exmed’s Managing Director, said,

“I am delighted that we are able to provide such a service to the local community of Hereford. The launch today is testament to the positive attitude and proactivity of the Exmed team.” Funding The vehicle will respond to urgent calls within an eight-minute radius of its base in Hereford and has been funded entirely at Exmed’s own expense.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

Exmed employee Rod Jordan, a registered Paramedic, said, “We are all really proud and excited by this opportunity of working alongside West Midlands Ambulance Service at a local level within Hereford. It’s a fantastic opportunity for our team of medical staff to keep their skills ‘sharp’ and maintain a positive presence within the community.” www.exmed.co.uk


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Delivering an effective police service to remote communities As the squeeze on public services starts to bite, forces will come under increasing pressure to use existing resources more efficiently. Strategic initiatives launched by politicians require regional police forces to balance budgets in a more effective way if they are to find the resources to meet such targets. The role of police stations in remote communities is coming under review – they are costly resources that present significant opportunities for cost savings. For example, one regional force is already looking to close 11 stations – a 15% reduction. However, closing local stations is a contentious issue with the communities that they serve and it is only natural that people fear the consequences of losing their local police presence. These public perceptions can often cloud the real issues and the question must be asked about how many times they have actually needed to visit these local stations. Centralised control centres handle 999 calls remotely and nonGwent Police recently took delivery of a new mobile ICU. urgent calls are being designated a extremely limited in what they can achieve. Simply separate number. The reality is that these remote logging calls and incidents while promising police stations have largely been kept open as a PR something will be done does not really meet the exercise, showing a visibility and presence to stated objective of enhancing the level of service reassure the local community that all is well. provided to communities. It is just a low cost, Eliminating the ongoing running costs of the quick-fix alternative to providing a more effective local police stations can make substantial savings. solution. These costs include staff, gas, electricity, telecoms, IT, office furniture and equipment, stationery and so on. Forces can also realise substantial profit from the sale of these buildings, which can range from small houses through to large heritage properties with substantial development potential. To replace these remote stations, a number of alternative solutions are under consideration, including using free office space provided by the local authority manned by one or two members of staff employed to log caller visits and liaise with headquarters (HQ) to resolve issues. Another alternative is to look at the use of mobile police stations as a cost effective and more efficient way of providing a community policing service in these cash-strapped times. It’s all about visibility and perception and if communities get used to seeing these vehicles in their villages and hamlets on a regular basis, then the whole visibility issue will be resolved. And what sort of communications capability will Mobile police stations such units have? How will staff be expected to There are several different ways of achieving this. communicate, particularly in areas where there is One option is to use the mobile offices, which are no mobile phone coverage? Are officers going to used by some forces when attending major have to knock on the door of the nearest residential incidents, parked in supermarket or church car or business premise to ask if they can use their parks as a visible point of presence. However, these phone? And what about sending e-mail and caravan-style units typically comprise only basic accessing the internet? This can hardly be the best office facilities such as whiteboards, one or two solution to providing remote communities with an desks and a kettle, meaning that they will be enhanced level of service!

3G is not sufficiently reliable or resilient for emergency services applications, while digital radio systems such as TETRA do not provide the high levels of bandwidth required to run remote data applications.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

What is really needed is a way of providing mobile police stations with the technology they need to replicate the voice, data and video facilities available at HQ. This requires purpose-built vehicles to be equipped with effective communications technologies that would enable the mobile police station staff to access the HQ telephone network to make internal or external calls. They would also be able to use onboard computers to access databases such as the PNC (Police National Computer), DVLA, Crimes databases, mapping systems etc. Satellite broadband is one of the only ways to deliver all the required communications capabilities to these mobile police stations. 3G is not sufficiently reliable or resilient for emergency services applications, while digital radio systems such as TETRA do not provide the high levels of bandwidth required to run remote data applications. However, satellite broadband has traditionally been perceived as being a high cost option and therefore not suitable for the tight budgets being operated by emergency services throughout the UK. These days, the reality is that once the hardware has been installed, all-inclusive monthly contracts can be tailored to achieve a perfect balance between budget, user requirements and SLAs with the instant availability of additional bandwidth as and when required. At this level it is easy to see how considerable savings can be made through eliminating the line rental, call charges, internet access and any high speed data links between these remote stations and HQ. Satellite broadband also provides the most secure and resilient communications possible. But it is not just the police and other emergency services that are looking for ways to improve the level of service provided to remote communities. Local authorities are also trying to enhance their provision of outreach services to every section of the communities they serve and are already starting to use mobile facilities for library services, youth services, etc. There is an increasing amount of cooperation between different agencies with sharing of both costs and facilities making the investment in vehicles of this kind easier to justify. Nottinghamshire Police is sharing such a vehicle with Nottinghamshire County Council’s County Contact Service, which includes NCC Safer Communities Department, Bassetlaw District


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requirements within available Council and Newark and budgets,” commented Simon Leonard Sherwood District Council. The of Gwent Police’s Emergency partnership came about as a Planning Department. “We are result of a vehicle being donated extremely proud of our new mobile to the police to support the Drug ICU which will enable us to better Abuse Resistance Education serve our local community and project over the past few years. improve public confidence in our The two organisations decided work.” to jointly pilot a service where a The vehicle also played a pivotal police officer and a county contact role during Operation Utah, a large advisor would go out to villages scale multi-force operation in across large rural areas of December 2009 that targeted Nottinghamshire in Bassetlaw, travelling criminals in Gwent Newark and Sherwood where a involving over 150 police officers from high population of older people six forces and representatives from the reside. Many of these DVLA, Department for Work and communities are very remote Pensions, VOSA, HM Revenue and with poor transport links, without Customs, Her Majesty’s Court Service even a shop or a pub and have Nottinghamshire Police shares a vehicle with Nottinghamshire County Council’s County Contact Service. and the Environment Agency. The traditionally presented significant ICU acted as a central information challenges in the delivery of police hub providing essential communications “By sharing resources in this way, we are able to and council services. throughout the operation, resulting in 32 vehicles deliver a level of service on an individual basis that This multi-agency vehicle has seating in the front being seized and 13 people arrested. would otherwise have been unaffordable,” added area for three visitors and a confidential office in Gill Collins of Nottinghamshire County Council. the rear with additional seating and a counter to Technology integration “The vehicle has helped to redress some equality which two laptops are fixed. There is even a It is all very well equipping these vehicles to the issues around access to services for the most kitchen area equipped with a water heater for hot rafters with the latest diverse technologies, but the vulnerable. The service is very well received, drinks and a microwave. It has a roof-mounted key to making it all work is to deploy them in a especially by the older residents as they get the transportable satellite solution that enables staff way that makes it easy for non-technical personnel working on the van to access high speed broadband chance to talk to someone face to face be it a to operate and use. To avoid this situation, council worker or the police. We can’t claim it is a and provide numerous valuable services, technology suppliers and coachbuilders must have direct result of our visits but, as part of the safer particularly for the elderly who are unable to get extensive experience of the operational communities initiative, we have seen crime figures into town, use a computer or navigate multiple requirements of the people that are actually going in these areas drop!” telephone voicemail menus. Satellite broadband to use the systems and ensure that they can be enables council systems to be accessed from any intuitively used with minimal specialist training. Civil contingency location from Monday to Friday every week at It is also a significant advantage if the technology It is important to consider that these vehicles can around 80 villages over a four-week rota. Villagers supplier has the experience and capability to install also be used for a wide range of other applications. are able to do a wide range of things like have For example, Gwent Police recently took delivery of and integrate these diverse technologies in-house, documentation verified for housing and council tax taking full responsibility for every stage of the a new mobile ICU that provides a tactical Silver benefits, apply for Blue Badges, report highway deployment process and providing a single point of command solution to ensure preparedness for all problems, make a referral for homecare or contact and responsibility for ensuring that civil contingencies throughout Southeast Wales. occupational therapy and much more. everything works as it should. Of equal importance The unit will also be deployed at public events is the ability of the technology supplier and including the forthcoming Ryder Cup and the Satellite-equipped vehicle coachbuilder to work together to ensure that the Ebbw Vale Eisteddfod. For the police, this satellite-equipped vehicle finished vehicle does everything required without The ICU has a roof-mounted transportable provides broadband-enabled access to crime exceeding the maximum weight regulations or satellite solution that enables the voice, data and recording and intelligence systems. It helps to compromising the handling of the vehicle. video technologies deployed by Gold Command to visibly enhance the service provided by existing Mobile units equipped with satellite-based voice, be replicated. Three ruggedised screens inside the beat teams and 24/7 response throughout the data and video technologies provide a flexible vehicle enable a wide range of specialised county and actively promote crime reduction resource that can be deployed in different ways to command support applications to be run as well as initiatives. For the villagers, knowing when this meet different operational objectives. As the being used for e-mail, instant messaging and videomobile rural contact point will be visiting provides number of applications for them continues to conferencing. The ICU also has a range of CCTV much needed reassurance and gives them an increase, so the return on investment becomes systems including a camera mounted on an opportunity to seek crime prevention advice, report increasingly compelling and the justification for the extendable, pneumatic 5m mast and body worn fly-tipping, vehicle related nuisance and other anticapital spend gets easier and easier. It is clear, based cameras that transmit live video into the ICU for social behaviour problems or provide confidential on experiences to date, that the smart deployment information to help in the fight against rural crime. viewing on a large flatscreen monitor and streamed of mobile police stations can play a major role in via secure servers to Gold Command. It also has a Chief Inspector Glenn Harper, Nottinghamshire enabling forces to deliver on their pledges to receiver providing a ‘heli-tele’ down link allowing Police, said, “This mobile resource has raised our provide an effective and modern police service in aerial images from police helicopters to be viewed profile and significantly improved our ability to remote communities. They will also improve the engage with local people in their own environment. in the unit. way that the police service engages with these A wall-mounted electronic whiteboard and a The direct feedback we receive is enabling us to set second flatscreen monitor for viewing live television communities and help to raise public perceptions local priorities that meet the service delivery as to the level of services provided. What is more, news are also fitted. An internal CCTV camera expectations of individual communities. It has also they can also deliver significant savings to stretched with full audio recording has also been installed for helped us to develop valuable community links police budgets. evidential and review purposes while externally, a with local residents and organisations to improve large touchscreen display is installed under a the detection and prosecution of offenders. What is www.excelerate.info heated awning for outdoor briefing sessions. more, the vehicle extended our civil contingency “We worked hand in hand with Excelerate capabilities and has already been used at a number Author: David Savage, Founder and Technology to develop an overall solution that has of high profile events throughout CEO of Excelerate Technology met all our tactical, strategic and technological Nottinghamshire.”

Emergency Services Times May 2010


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Mobile satellite technology

system a multitude of applications. It has already been installed in two command and control vehicles for Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service, and is an integral part of a hi-tech mobile assessment unit for UK Biobank, transferring data immediately and safely from rural areas to the project headquarters. www.primetech.co.uk

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518CDI chassis while the seventh is a 3.2 tonne Vito 120CDI Dualiner van with seating for five – all were supplied by Hatfield dealer S&B Commercials. Powered by low-emission 184hp Euro 5 V6 engines mated to automatic transmissions, the Sprinters are fitted with box bodies by German specialist WAS, and comprehensively equipped for use as Paediatric Intensive Care Ambulances. www.sja.org.uk/london

Primetech’s Micro-Sat Lite is the latest in rapid deployment satellite technology providing a second-to-none communication service to the blue light sector. This secure, low profile, fully automated, self seeking satellite system will provide internet access to mission critical documentation with just one press of a button, in less than five minutes. It is this speed and accessibility that can prove pivotal for quickly setting up a data and video streaming network – however remote and hostile the location. When used in conjunction with Primetech Private GSM network, it becomes an unrivalled solution for rapid deployment in situations where immediate communications are vital or where conventional networks are not available. The Micro-Sat Lite weighs just 18kg and stows at 200mm. This has huge implications for applications on smaller vehicles meaning it can be deployed just as easily on a medical team estate car or a mountain rescue vehicle as it can on a large RRV. This versatility gives the Micro-Sat Lite

St John chooses Mercedes-Benz Keeping up appearances

material also protects against peeling, ensuring the vehicle livery remains in good order, protecting the investment for longer - which would explain why most of John Dennis’s customers have switched to the 3M product. John Dennis Coachbuilders, comments, “Different fire brigades have different preferences about the use of design – for example battenburg or stripes. But with more than 90 percent of our vehicles using 3M reflective markings, there is no doubt where the preference lies when it comes to visibility and the choice of the best material. It’s important to our customers that their vehicles remain in good condition and the quality of the 3M product makes a big difference in protecting the brightness of the sheeting and the look of the vehicle.” www.3M.co.uk/traffic

(From L to R) Flight Lieutenant Jim David, Sergeant Greig Allan, Deputy CEO of St John Ambulance London (Prince of Wales’) District Martin Henderson, Master Aircraftsman Steve Ward and Flight Lieutenant Bob Dewes. Photo: Lexia Media

St John Ambulance chiefs in London have once again entrusted MercedesBenz ambulances with the task of transporting critically ill children to specialist hospitals in the capital. Seven new vehicles have been drafted in by St John Ambulance’s London (Prince of Wales’) District, which works in partnership with the Children’s Acute Transport Service (CATS), South Thames Retrieval Service (STRS) and helicopter crews from RAF Search & Rescue to ensure that youngsters receive the best possible care. Six are based on 5.0 tonne Mercedes-Benz Sprinter

3M, the diversified technology company, has been supplying John Dennis Coachbuilders with its Diamond Grade DG3 Reflective Sheeting for many years. As the UK’s leading designer of fire appliances and rescue vehicles it’s important for John Dennis Coachbuilders to maintain its reputation for quality, which extends to every aspect of the design including the reflective markings applied to the vehicle livery. 3M Diamond Grade DG3 Reflective Sheeting with assured seal is a high performance retroreflective material which provides protection against dirt and water, meaning the performance of the reflective material can be guaranteed for up to seven years. The

ATV driver training for HART

Based on the Polaris Ranger 6x6 ATV, Scottish dealer AY Morton originally developed the Morton EUV and Morton Med-Unit for the Scottish Ambulance Service. The aim was to produce a vehicle suitable for mountain rescue operations and the Polaris 6x6 was chosen for its superior off-road capabilities. The machine came to the notice of the HART programme, the Hazardous Area Response Teams developed between the Ambulance Service Association and the Department of Health to work inside the inner cordon of a major incident. AY Morton has now supplied 16 Polaris 6x6 Emergency Utility Vehicles across the UK with three of these in Scotland and 13 across England and Wales, including supplying HART. The company is now rolling out a driver training programme, specially tailored to HART, which takes place just outside Glasgow. Ranging from basic training to winch operation, the course is run on an extremely demanding off-road track and teaches the necessary handling skills to operate the vehicle in a wide variety of conditions. The Polaris based Morton EUV can be modified to suit the requirements of the medical unit and the conditions they are working in, including a tracked version for extreme situations. www.polaris-britain.com

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Vehicle management

North Yorkshire Police has chosen Carnation Designs’ genisys system for use in its new fleet.

North Yorkshire Police, in association with AES – a designer, builder and installer of integrated electrical and communication systems for specialist vehicles – has chosen Carnation Designs’ genisys system for use in its new fleet, including vehicles from Audi, BMW and Land Rover. Richard Flint, Head of Transport at North Yorkshire Police, said, “We wanted a single, flexible, vehicle management system that could be used across the entire vehicle range. The genisys system is highly reliable, minimising maintenance, servicing and repair times, and manages all the auxiliary electronics and power requirements of our vehicles, integrating with the vehicle’s CANBus to provide valuable additional inputs and functionality. It will be fitted to all new vehicles as part of our rolling replacement programme.”

nance of the Land Rover, Mitsubishi and Toyota vehicles. Vehicles used – in patrol, road management and training roles – are the Toyota Land Cruiser, Mitsubishi Shogun and Land Rover Discovery. They average some 100,000 miles a year and require monthly servicing. Around 10 new vehicles a month are introduced into the fleet as existing vehicles are retired, with the first replacement vehicles under the new contract due to enter the fleet in late summer. VT will be responsible for converting the vehicles for service by applying tailored livery and fitting equipment such as LCD signage units, emergency lights and storage cages. www.vtplc.com.

Fleet support

Support services company VT Group (VT) has started service delivery of a four-year contract to supply, manage and support the Highways Agency’s fleet of more than 200 patrol vehicles. The company is managing the procurement, full maintenance and support requirement for the specialist patrol, resilience and team manager vehicles, which are based at 40 locations throughout England and are critical to ensuring the operation of the country’s main arterial routes. The fleet of 4x4 vehicles will be managed from a central location in London and will involve VT utilising an accredited dealer network throughout the country to carry out repairs and mainte-

tem is the next generation of rapid deployable surveillance solutions for the monitoring of anti-social behaviour and enhanced coverage within HM prisons and large scale events. Integrated with COFDM transmission technology, once in place, control and viewing capabilities can be remotely operated from a Peli case, mobile incident command unit and also internal control rooms and available within five minutes of deploying within any location. www.excelerate.info

M&L appoints RSG Engineering

Excelerate Technology has announced the recent acquisition of Norton Integrated Systems Ltd, the designer and manufacturer of latest innovation in rapid deployable technology. The Sherpa System provides temporary or additional infrastructure where either none exists or has been compromised or requires further resilience. The patented motorised system gives operators the ability to see, hear, think and manage via the integration and delivery of surveillance cameras, wireless networks, TETRA and GSM at the touch of a button. The delivery unit eradicates the need for specialised lifting equipment and tools and instead provides a self-powered system that climbs to the required height and securely and automatically attaches the head unit complete with single or multiple communications technologies to a wide variety of euro spec lampposts. This high reach capability provides a vandal-proof system with interference- free coverage. The Sherpa sys-

to instantly convert any vehicle into an emergency vehicle. The unit is ideal for undercover vehicles, officers’ cars and hire cars plus many other applications. This combination comprises a powerful magnetic Solaris LED light (LM400) with an integrated 30W compact siren (SCS1000 Sound Star). The LM500’s total power consumption is one Amp for light only and four Amps for light and siren. Power is supplied via a combination cigar lighter plug and switch. Roof adhesion is afforded by four powerful neodyminum magnets plus four suckers. The LM500 complies with EU directive 2004/104/CE plus R65 Class One and is available in the UK from Anderco Safety – Federal Signal’s new UK distributor. www.federalsignal.com www.anderco.ie

Surveillance solution

www.carnationdesigns.co.uk www.autoelec.co.uk

VT Group personnel have started work on the Highways Agency vehicle fleet.

VEHICLES PRODUCT INFORMATION | 45

Temperature control unit M&L Ambulance Service has appointed RSG Engineering Limited to provide hazard-warning equipment for its fleet of 10 Skoda Octavia VRS estates. The equipment includes: the Stellar LED lightbar; Hide-A-LEDs – which were mounted within the light cluster; Xtreme LED modules set behind the grille; and ‘24 LED’ lamps set into the tailgate – all of which are managed by the Universal Controller unit which is concealed behind panelling in the boot wall and controls all of the hazard warning equipment via a handset mounted on the centre console. The vehicles were purchased and put into operation in March 2010. Eight of the cars were marked up in M&L’s unique livery and set to work in the A&E service; the last two remained covert for the Secure Patient Transport Service. www.ml-ambulance.co.uk www.rsg-ontop.com

Light and siren unit

The new Federal Signal LM500 combination light and siren unit can be used

Emergency Services Times May 2010

The tragic death of two police dogs on one of the hottest days of 2009 prompted RSG, with the cooperation of Nottinghamshire Police and the RSPCA, to develop the K9 Alert, a custom-built temperature control system. The K9 Alert comprises a main unit which houses the control circuit board and LCD display, status LEDs, test and disable buttons, alarm buzzer and most importantly the temperature sensor. A control keyfob that communicates up to a distance of 1km from the K9 Alert is retained by the dog’s owner/handler to alert them of potentially dangerous levels of heat within the vehicle. The control box can be set to any temperature, usually during installation. When the vehicle’s interior temperature reaches the pre-set temperature an audible alarm will sound both inside the vehicle and from the key fob provided; the vehicle hazard warning lights will also flash, providing a visual warning. The keyfob can also be set to vibrate only for covert operations. All units are supplied with full testing and installation instructions including full wiring diagrams for self-installation; however, RSG offers an onsite or in-the-field installation service. www.rsg-ontop.com


46 | PROFILE

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ALSAR – lowland search and rescue The Association of Lowland Search and Rescue (ALSAR) is the governing association for lowland based search and rescue groups in the UK. ALSAR units have countywide responsibility and regularly support their neighbouring counties. In addition, Lowland Search Dogs, who provide specialist search dogs to vulnerable missing person searches, are part of ALSAR. All ALSAR personnel, both nationally and in the individual search groups, are unpaid volunteers. ALSAR units are usually deployed by the police, but can also be used by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency in costal counties. The units are on call 24/7 to assist in the search and rescue of vulnerable missing people, and save a number of lives every year. The units are fully self-sufficient, having all equipment and personnel necessary to plan and run an effective missing person search. ALSAR is a member of the UKSAR Operators Group and reciprocal associate members of Mountain Rescue England & Wales. There are presently 15 established units in ALSAR with approximately 500 trained search technicians. New units are being formed all the time, with the newest in Northern Ireland. Members of Sussex Search and Rescue with BBC’s Rav Wilding during filming of the BBC’s Missing: Live on the South Downs.

The current financial situation has hit units hard, both in terms of fundraising and the understanding of employers when staff need to leave work and attend callouts.

behaviour to their search activities. Other popular courses include dementia awareness and mental health first aid. A high percentage of the vulnerable missing people searched for by ALSAR units are either suffering from a dementia, or have mental health problems, so these courses prove very useful both in guiding how the search is undertaken and also on the most appropriate way to deal with the Misper (missing person). More general search techniques, such as tracking, are also regularly practised and utilised.

Training All units train to a common syllabus with many teams developing ideas and concepts unique to their geographical location. Many ALSAR personnel have attended the Lost Person Behaviour course. This three-day course, based on both Robert Koester's book of the same name and the International Search and Rescue Incident Database (ISRID), provides excellent guidance for searchers on the ground as well as search planners on how to apply an understanding of missing person

High standards As well as offering guidance to its members on training, ALSAR has a clinical governance panel to ensure that casualty care is provided to the best possible standard. In addition to training ALSAR personnel, the ALSAR training organisations have

Search dog Archie deploys with his handler.

An ALSAR Search Technician reassures a Misper suffering with a dementia.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

provided courses in all levels of search technique and search management to police, fire and rescue, and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency. In recent months, ALSAR teams have been actively involved in the filming of a new series of the BBC’s Missing: Live, starring Rav Wilding. This filming has involved both training sessions and search reconstructions. ALSAR is committed to a greater understanding of the importance of volunteer search and rescue in the UK, and is keen to support initiatives that promote this. The current financial situation has hit units hard, both in terms of fundraising and the understanding of employers when staff need to leave work and attend callouts. Effective publicity for search and rescue is essential to counter this. ALSAR will be on stand E11 at The Emergency Services Show 2010 (www.ess2010.com). www.alsar.org.uk


48 | ENVIRONMENT

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Responding to a changing climate The recent chaos across Europe that followed the volcanic eruption of Eyjafjallajokull was a stark reminder that however sophisticated and technologically-advanced our societies become we are not immune to the power of nature. If anything, our growing interdependence and reliance on technology make us more vulnerable to disruption today than we were in the past. The day-to-day impact of the environment on the workloads of emergency responders has become better understood in recent years. However, given the changes in our climate that have been predicted, reliance on subjective past experience will not be sufficient to address the new organisational and operational challenges we are likely to face in the future. Climate change presents both new challenges and opportunities for everyone involved in the emergency responder community, from frontline staff and strategic planners, to their suppliers and partners. Although this is a hugely complex area, a basic appreciation of some key issues impacting emergency responders is useful to stimulate debate.

The UK Climate Impacts Programme (UKCIP), set up by the Government in 1997 and funded by Defra, helps organisations assess how they might be affected by climate change so they can prepare for its impact. Scenarios of Climate Change for the UK present four possible future climates depending on different future levels of emissions of greenhouse gases. It is important to remember that these scenarios contain an element of uncertainty, and are related to the likelihood of specific events occurring. The timeframe for reaching these thresholds depends on the success of actions to reduce global emissions. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) supports this UK work and provides a number of useful definitions that can assist our understanding of key issues: • Climate change in IPCC usage refers to any change in climate over time, whether due to natural variability or as a result of human activity • Adaptive capacity is the ability of a system to adjust to climate change (including climate variability and extremes) to moderate potential damages, to take advantage of opportunities, or to cope with the consequences • Vulnerability is the degree to which a system is susceptible to, or unable to cope with, adverse effects of climate change, including climate variability and extremes. If we looked at past climate patterns, we can see that there has always been a huge degree of natural variability. Systems, be they natural eco systems, manmade structural designs or even responders’ systems of work, have adapted over time to cope with this variability as ‘normal’ conditions. Less common ‘extreme’ events have also occurred regularly in the past, and can be defined as climatic events that fall outside of the normal coping range. For example, in the UK wet weather in the summer

months is quite normal, but the quantity of rainfall over a short period in summer 2007 resulted in an extreme event outside of our normal coping range. Although climate models currently predict a rapidly changing and warming climate in the future this does not translate into a scenario where each and every year will see higher temperatures than the one before. Natural variability means that although we could get one summer that was cooler than the previous year, it is predicted that average temperatures over time are increasing. As the entire range of temperature variability moves upwards, more and more climatic events will occur that are outside of our current coping range making extreme weather events as seen in 2007 relatively common. Unless we adapt to cope or respond to these changes, they will inevitably have an ‘extreme’ impact.

Greater collaboration and sharing of experience and learning across the blue light sector might provide valuable gains for all concerned. Current evidence suggests that whatever actions we can take now to reduce our own impact on the environment, we are committed to climate changes in the next 50 years or so as a result of greenhouse gases already in the atmosphere. Emergency responders therefore do not have the luxury of choosing to either reduce our impact on the environment or adapt our emergency services to improve our ability to cope, we need to do both. Adapting to a changing operational environment Hotter, dryer summers In general terms, climate models for the UK suggest that we will see an increase in the frequency of hot summers with prolonged hot dry spells. Although predicted to be drier, summer rainfall when it occurs is predicted to be much heavier and more locally concentrated leading to flash and urban flooding as seen in 2007. From a fire and rescue service perspective, hotter, dryer summers will lead to an increase in the number and severity of grassland and forest fires, placing a strain on resources and potentially requiring a change in equipment and tactics. Very dry summers will also put a great deal of strain on

Emergency Services Times May 2010

drinking water supplies that may lead to water shortages, impacting both fire fighting operations and training. The impact on health and ambulance service colleagues from high summer temperatures will be even more marked. The heat wave that impacted all across Europe in 2003 resulted in significant pressure on health services and in excess of 30,000 premature deaths;11,500 in France alone. Climate models suggest that the ‘extreme’ summer we experienced in 2003 will be considered merely average by 2040 and relatively cool by 2060. Reviews in the UK after the 2003 heat wave found that spikes in recorded daily deaths and hospital admissions coincided accurately with spikes in daily average temperatures. Elevated temperatures can therefore be a significant factor in predicting workloads from a health perspective, and it is not just the level of daytime temperature highs that is important. Research indicates that high average nighttime temperatures are a significant factor in the premature deaths of vulnerable individuals. The impact on police colleagues arising from higher temperatures may appear at first sight to be less apparent. However, anything that impacts communities will have a potential impact on police workloads with challenges as diverse as additional traffic flows in coastal and tourist areas, to increases in low level crime, disorder and community unrest, especially in the inner cities. Flooding Despite being hotter and dryer on average, future scenarios suggest that we will see an increase in summer flooding with high impact rainfall events as last seen in 2007 becoming more frequent. This will compound the predicted problems of warmer, wetter winters and higher sea levels that will lead to a general increase in major flooding events. According to the Government’s ‘Foresight Future Flooding Report’, over £200billion worth of assets are at risk around British rivers and coasts and in towns and cities, and we are all vulnerable to the disruption of infrastructure such as transport and power when a major flood occurs. Flooding affects us all, but the number of people at high risk from river and coastal flooding is expected to increase from 1.6 million today, to between 2.3 and 3.6 million by the 2080s. The increase for intra-urban flooding, caused by short-duration events, could increase those at risk from 200,000 today to between 700,000 and 900,000. Increasing numbers of major and high impact flood events will test all blue light agencies and Category 1 Responders. Responding to these challenges will require enhanced multi-agency, multi-disciplinary and multi-jurisdictional working arrangements with improved arrangements to


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FOR ALL YOUR TRAINING NEEDS!

Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service’s Commercial Training Department offers training to outside agencies such as Industrial Emergency Response Teams (ERT’s), Maritime Agencies, Ambulance, Police & Fire & Rescue Services. Tel 0151 296 5043 Email training@merseyfire.gov.uk

Emergency Services Times May 2010


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access mutual aid across the UK. At a strategic level we are likely to see an increased number of incidents requiring the establishment of ‘Gold Command’. At a tactical level, emergency response staff from all agencies will need at least the basic training necessary to recognise the hazards and risks arising during a flood event. More specialist staff from all agencies that might be expected to work in a flooded area will need higher levels of training and the specialist equipment necessary to enable them to work safely in the flood environment. Storms An increase in the frequency and severity of storms will have an impact on all emergency response agencies. The primary role of fire and rescue services during a storm will be rescuing people and assisting in the protection and restoration of the critical national infrastructure. However, the rescue of people trapped by fallen trees, collapsed buildings and those involved in road traffic accidents will pose an operational and logistical challenge for all responder agencies. These tasks will be hampered by the actions of the storm itself and torrential rain and high winds will place firefighters, police officers and ambulance service staff at greater risk. Reducing the impact of emergency responders on the environment In addition to adapting our operational services to respond to a changing climate, all emergency response organisations can make a valuable contribution to mitigate the impact of climate change by reducing their own impact on the environment. Most of the non-emergency adaptations necessary are generic to any large organisation and there is a growing wealth of information available on how emissions reductions can be achieved. We have hard evidence of the significant reductions that can be delivered through adaptations to fleet and property portfolios in particular, and in the current economic climate the added bonus of significant cost savings from reduced fuel and energy consumption makes this a ‘win-win’ scenario. This is an area where greater collaboration and sharing of experience and learning across the blue light sector might provide valuable gains for all concerned. The potential contribution of partners and suppliers These issues cannot be addressed by any single agency or organisation working alone. As emergency response organisations adapt to cope with the

challenges of climate change, the contributions made by all of their partners and suppliers will be vital. Over time, all responder agencies will need a new generation of goods and services to assist them in adapting and responding to a changing climate. At the same time, they will be looking for their partners and suppliers to assist them in reducing emissions and cost. Innovation and partnership will be the key looking forward and the list of goods and services that might be impacted is endless. The following examples from a fire and rescue service perspective outline some of the potential areas of interest; there are no doubt many more. Police and ambulance colleagues could no doubt form their own priority list: • Grass/wildland fires: specialist personal protective equipment; firefighter welfare systems; off-road access fire fighting vehicles and equipment; fire extinguishing agents (foam/water additives); air assets – helicopters; modelling/mapping/training tools; and ‘surge’ capacity/support services. • Restricted water supplies (urban as well as rural): rapid knock-down systems (compressed air foam); water carriers; water relay equipment; more effective equipment for water application, branches and self contained portable knock-down extinguisher systems; and specialist pumps and equipment to access a wider range of ‘open’ water supplies. • Floods: training – management, specialist response and basic hazard awareness for all staff who might need to work in a flood environment; specialist PPE – from boots and dry suits to helmets, gloves and life jackets/personal floatation devices; various boats, rescue craft and ancillary equipment; welfare and decontamination packs for responders and the public; provision of logistical support/’surge’ capacity/support services; High Volume Pumps – larger scale than those used at present; and salvage/CNI protection equipment. • Storms: additional specialist rescue equipment, including a wide range of hand tools and cutting equipment; additional personal protective equipment/vehicle protection systems; and environmental protection, salvage/spillage kits. • Climate impact reduction: vehicles – eg squeeze an additional 5mpg per fire appliance/ ambulance/police car; energy use and environmental impact assessments; premises energy savings – photovoltaic roofs, grey water recycling, enhanced natural ventilation systems etc; teleconferencing; low (environmental) impact training; and adaptation consultancy. In short, anything that reduces the overall environmental impact of, and costs for, response agencies.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

Conclusion The main challenge we face in adapting to cope with a changing climate is overcoming inertia and building a short-term business case for change given the long-term nature of the problem. It is easy to default to a ‘do nothing’ strategy, in the belief that it is all too complex, the science too uncertain, and the costs of adaption too high. However, given the physical and financial risks facing our communities and responders I would suggest that ‘do nothing’ strategies are unsustainable. Given the certain knowledge that future fuel and energy costs are likely to increase significantly, there is also a growing financial business case for change and adaption. There is no single right way of adapting to a changing climate, but by emergency responders working more closely together, forging the links between academic research and real world responder experience, and harnessing the innovative and creative potential of our supply chains, I would suggest that we can start to identify and make the small but important changes necessary. References and further reading 1. Fire Research Technical Report 1/2006 ‘Effects of Climate Change on Fire and Rescue Services in the UK’ 06 FRSD 04166 © Crown copyright, 2006 2. Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change, HM Treasury, ISBN number: 0-521-70080-9: www.strenreview.org.uk 3. ‘Foresight Future Flooding’. This report has been produced by the Flood and Coastal Defence project of the Foresight programme. Foresight is run by the Office of Science and Technology, under the direction of the Chief Scientific Adviser to HM Government. Foresight creates challenging visions of the future to ensure effective strategies now: www.foresight.gov.uk 4. The UK Climate Impacts Programme: http://www.ukcip.org.uk 5. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change: http://www.ipcc.ch 6. Community Resilience to Extreme Weather: http://www.extreme-weather-impacts.net 7. Direct Gov Act on CO2: http://actonco2.direct.gov.uk/actonco2/home.html Author: Former CFO Paul Hayden, Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service


52 | CONTRACTS & PEOPLE

In brief . . . Heather Strawbridge has been reappointed as Chairman for South Western Ambulance Service NHS Trust. Heather has previously worked for the former Westcountry Ambulance Service since 2004, meaning she already has six years’ experience in this important role. She was an integral part of local government in Somerset as a leading county and district Chancellor, and she was Chairman of Connect South West Limited (formerly Connexions Somerset). Heather is currently Chairman of the NHS Confederation Ambulance Services Network, which will bring a national perspective to the board. www.swast.nhs.uk

Microbus, the leading supplier of vehicle computers and ANPR/LPR camera solutions, has appointed Bob Schimmelman as Sales Manager. Bob brings 20 years of experience in the mobile data and communications technology industry to the role, which he took up in May. Richard Blake, Sales and Marketing Director for Microbus, said, “Bob is well placed to service our customers’ evolving business needs and help strengthen Microbus’s position as the leading supplier in this marketplace.” www.microbus.com

Emergency Care Practitioner (ECP) Vickey McMahon, from Great Western Ambulance Service, beat over 800 entrants to become one of the 15 faces of NHS Jobs in a national competition. She is the only one of the winners who represents the ambulance service. According to the judges, Vickey was the ideal choice as her job as an ECP is so varied. David Whiting, Chief Executive of GWAS, said, “Vickey is a superb example of the commitment to treating patients wherever and whenever they need us.” The NHS Jobs website advertises around 20,000 jobs every month, and attracts over two million applicants every year. www.jobs.nhs.com

Staffordshire firefighter Jacqui Slack has triumphed as the winning female for a second year running in the National Emergency Services Triathlon Championships, which took place at the National Water Sports Centre in Nottingham. Triathletes from emergency services all over the country took part in the race, which attracted over 150 competitors. The race involved a 500m swim, 20k cycle and 5k run and Jacqui completed the course in just one hour and four seconds. www.staffordshirefire.gov.uk

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Leicestershire and Kent welcome new Chief Constables Chief Constables have recently been appointed in Leicestershire and Kent. Simon Cole will start his new role as Chief Constable at Leicestershire Constabulary in the summer. He succeeds Matt Baggott, who became Chief Constable of Northern Ireland in September last year. Simon is currently Deputy Chief Constable of Hampshire Constabulary and brings many years of experience to the role. While working at Hampshire, Simon took the lead on Safer Neighbourhoods and was involved in the Special Constabulary for Hampshire and for the South East Region of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO). He has also been a member of staff on the Strategic Command Course which helps train senior officers so they may become chief officers in the future. Simon is very excited to be taking up the post. He said, “My job will be to still make further improvements for the people of Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland.” Meanwhile, Kent Police has announced that Ian Learmonth is to take up the role of Chief Constable. Ian is currently Deputy Chief Consta-

Simon Cole

Ian Learmonth

ble for Norfolk Police and he takes over from Michael Fuller, who has taken on a new role as HM Chief Inspector at the Crown Prosecution Service. Ian has 34 years’ of police experience and served at Essex Police and Strathclyde Police before joining Norfolk Constabulary. Ann Barnes, Chair of Kent Police Authority, said, “I’m sure we have chosen the right person for the job. Ian will bring a variety of skills that will complement the existing Chief Officer team. It’s a new start for us in Kent,

and I’m sure Ian will be a great asset. There are of course high expectations – we want to be amongst the best forces in the country.” Ian stated that he is delighted and thrilled to be taking up this new role. He said, “My ambition is to move Kent forward from being a good, wellrespected force to delivering an outstanding service to the taxpayers of Kent and Medway.”

Mobile ID units increase efficiency at borders and sports events

APD Communications is to equip all Special Branch and Counter Terrorism officers with cutting-edge Mobile Identification Units (MIUs) which will speed up the process of checking passenger information at borders and at sporting events. The £3m framework follows a successful trial by a number of UK forces, overseen by the Association of Chief Police Officers’ (ACPO) Terrorism Allied Matters (TAM) Police Liaison Team. The new handheld, highly sophisticated mobile units will replace the bulky technology the officers have been using since 2000, playing an important role in the 2006 World Cup. Previously the units had to be carried

www.kentpoliceauthority.gov.uk www.leics-pa.police.uk

Airwave improves paramedic safety

around in a briefcase, but now officers can remain mobile as they scan vital information which is checked against various databases. Live time information is displayed on the screen in a matter of seconds. DC Richard Evans, who was in charge of the trial, said, “Feedback we had from officers during the trial was excellent, with the unit proving to be user-friendly and reliable. The mobile nature of the unit, combined with the information we can check against, has already helped the officers make some significant arrests.” Steve Denison, Managing Director of APD Communications, believes the units will revolutionise how sporting events and borders are policed. He said, “We are in talks with ACPO (TAM) to introduce additional functionality such as biometrics, fingerprint scanning and digital camera technology to help further improve the protection their officers provide for the public.”

Yorkshire Ambulance Service (YAS) has taken measures to improve staff safety by introducing new technology from Airwave. Over 900 frontline staff are being equipped with Omniguard, a personal safety solution which provides active monitoring of their wellbeing when working alone or in potentially life-threatening situations. Omniguard is designed for use with the new Airwave radio service, which means that staff do not need to be equipped with an additional device, and trusts can be assured of excellent coverage and reliability. Ambulance staff can access Omiguard through a dedicated short key on their Airwave handset. This allows the control room to monitor their status and location as it triggers regular safety check messages. The control room can then take the necessary action if a paramedic fails to respond. In the initial trial of the technology, paramedics responded very well, saying it was easy to use and they liked the fact they could request enhanced monitoring when necessary. The trust hopes it will have a knock-on effect in terms of the quality of care the staff can provide to the public.

www.apdcomms.com

www.airwavesolutions.co.uk

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Ambulance Versatile Unimogs clean up staff welcome Wiltshire’s ice and floods new control room layout Staff who work in East of England Ambulance Service’s three control rooms have been treated to a more comfortable working environment thanks to a three-year development project. The service decided to improve its three centres in Bedford, Chelmsford and Norwich as part of the Government’s Call Connect programme which was put in place to address how quickly ambulance services were delivered to patients in lifethreatening situations. HAM Associates supported the trust with ergonomics design advice to ensure the facilities would be fit for the staff to carry out their high-demand work. The company conducted a series of assessments to gather information from staff regarding their satisfaction with a variety of features in their workplace, such as seating, room layout, lighting, temperature and noise. This information was gathered to help the engineers and architects who were employed to carry out the project.

When the changes were made, the satisfaction survey was repeated to provide feedback from staff on the improvements. In the Bedford call centre, the acoustics saw the biggest improvement, which is important for staff taking in emergency 999 calls. Carl Denton, Bedford EOC General Manager, said, “The ergonomics design has contributed significantly to a happier workforce; the environment is much improved and has helped reduce fatigue and stress. The room layout has improved our call handling pick up rate.” The staff agreed there had been a significant improvement, stating they no longer felt stressed which made for a more pleasant working environment. Many workers were also able to report reductions of headaches, and the trust hopes this will lead to a reduction of general sickness amongst staff. www.ham.co.uk

In brief . . . Award-winning paramedic Stuart Plumbley has joined the Surrey Air Ambulance. Stuart, from Caterham, received a commendation from Surrey Police in 2005 for his help in introducing medical packs to protect evidence of serious and sexual attacks. He pioneered the use of a fibreless gown which preserves uncontaminated evidence such as blood, hair and saliva from victims’ clothing. The customised kit prevents ambulances being taken off the road while they are swabbed by police. Stuart is proud to be joining the Surrey Air Ambulance Team, who are based in Marsden. He said, “The reason I came here was to work with the doctors and expand my clinical knowledge.” www.kentsurreyandsussexairambulance.co.uk

After the turbulent weather this winter, Wiltshire Council needed a fast, mobile solution to clear up the thick snow and the flooding that followed caused by the melting snow and ice. The council’s fleet of Mercedes-Benz Unimogs proved to be the ideal solution. The Unimogs operate all year round on such tasks as road sweeping, salt spreading and road sign washing, but heavy snowploughs were fitted when the blizzards arrived and then, when the snow thawed, a new pump capable of shifting 5500 litres of water a minute was introduced. Its ability to drive through water up to 0.8m deep makes it the ideal vehicle for flood work.

The Voselsang VX186-260Q pump weighs 600kg including frame and is fitted to the Unimog via a standard DIN-plate system. All additional tools are carried safely in the Unimog’s inherent payload. All implements are powered direct from the diesel engine via Power Take-Off points, and it takes a matter of minutes to mount and demount attachments. Despite this it is still powerful enough to boast 43% more flow than the pumps installed on the previous emergency fire appliances – the Green Goddesses. Even when operating at idle revs of 250 to 300rpm, it is still capable of removing over 2800 litres a minute.

www.birminghamprepared.gov.uk www.htk.co.uk

www.mercedes-benz.co.uk

Mapyx software improves Mountain Rescue response Mapyx Limited has entered into an agreement with Mountain Rescue England & Wales (MREW) to become official GIS and mapping partners. Mapyx is providing the organisation with search management and mapping tools. Every member of MREW will receive a free copy of the Quo package with associated maps. Mark Lewis, Communications Officer for MREW, said, “This is a great achievement for MREW to enable a common GIS platform to be available across England and Wales – and without teams having to spend any of their limited funds.” Chairman of Mapyx, Steven Wood, said, “We are honoured that MREW asked for our assistance and we look forward to supporting them immediately and in the future.”

In case of an emergency incident in the city, Birmingham City Council has introduced a new Birmingham Community Alert system to warn residents and workers about incidents such as road closures, power failures, flooding and evacuations. The free service uses the multi-channel Horizon platform from HTK, the leading UK provider of public mass notification solutions. Residents sign up for the free service where they can choose their preferred method of contact: e-mail, text, automated voice calls to mobile phones or landlines, pager or fax. When an incident takes place an automatic alert will be sent depending on postcode area.

This will start with the introduction of a new digital platform which will improve response times and coordination for search and rescue organisations. SARMAN (Search and Rescue Management Solutions) is a modular system providing MREW with the capability to plan, coordinate and manage its work more efficiently. Ewan Thomas, Flood Management Officer for MREW, said, “The powerful combination of Quo, the Mapyx tracking system and SARMAN will make a significant contribution to search and rescue planning and incident management in England and Wales.” www.mapyx.com www.mountain.rescue.org.uk

Emergency Services Times May 2010

Kevan Whitehead, well-known figure in the fire industry, has accepted a position as Head of Marketing and Business Development at the International College of Management and Engineering (ICEM) in Muscat in the Sultanate of Oman. The college provides industrial and commercial training to civil defence, oil and gas industries. Having worked as Senior Technical Officer in Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service for many years and provided technical support and consultancy to many fire and rescue service PPE, equipment and software supply organisations throughout the continent, Kevan brings a vast amount of knowledge and experience to the role. “I am looking forward to joining the team,” he said. “We have an ambitious vision for the future with significant development and expansion plans both within the Middle East and further away.” www.icemoman.com


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The TETRA evolution Terrestrial Trunked Radio (TETRA) was originally developed over a decade ago to meet the needs of the most demanding professional radio users. These include people requiring daily access to dedicated one-to-one and one-to-many radio communications networks capable of carrying voice and data over a real-time secure and robust connection. The international requirement for public safety and security is paving the way for TETRA’s coming of age despite the global economic downturn. The majority of TETRA networks for public safety and security (PSS) users are government owned and are therefore not used commercially. A further, yet relatively small, proportion of networks are either privately owned or run by systems integrators who invest in the network and sell communications services to both private companies and government agencies. In the case of noncommercial deployments it is often up to individual public sector organisations, for example regional police forces, to apply for project funding from their central government. Before the birth of TETRA, public sector bodies relied on regional analogue radio networks. However, the system was limited by a number of serious defects, primarily due to the fragmented nature of the network spectrum, meaning that users experienced patchy coverage and problems with signal interface and security. Criminals could hack in to emergency service radio communications, allowing them to uncover contingency plans and crime response procedures. The regional nature of the system also meant that there was no interoperable communication between local response squads across the country.

The recession is unlikely to take a significant overall toll on TETRA deployments, which is encouraging news in terms of pushing the development of the technology forwards in the long term. Strong growth TETRA has since become the de facto technology deployed in public safety networks in over 100 countries, and this looks set to continue. Recent figures from IMS Research show strong growth in the past year, with handset shipments in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) up by more than 50 percent in 2008. Successful projects like those carried out ahead of the Olympics in Beijing have set a precedent for new projects such as the independent TETRA communications infrastructure currently under construction in London ahead of the 2012 Olympic Games. With the onset of the Olympic Games in London, it is likely that the emergency services such as fire

and rescue, police and ambulance will also be looking to upgrade their TETRA networks and handsets in coming months. The emergency services must respond to a crisis with immediate effect, and an efficient communications system will be a vital component in being able to react in an appropriate manner. With the threat of high-profile terrorist attacks looming over Europe, effective communication between local emergency services can mean the difference between life and death in a crisis. There is also increased pressure on Transport for London to provide comprehensive TETRA support across the London Underground as the event approaches. Public safety has become a first priority for governments who are willing to invest in communications systems that will ensure greater security levels for the future. A handful of countries, including Italy, Germany and Norway, have already taken steps to facilitated countrywide TETRA networks, but even in these countries there are still coverage black spots, especially indoors. Increased requirements for safety and security on an in-country basis have meant that government bodies are beginning to recognise the need to deploy comprehensive TETRA networks in crowded public venues such as sport stadiums and shopping malls, but there is still huge room for improvement.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

In-building deployments Although there is huge variation from country to county, Andrew Solutions has recently seen a significant surge in interest for in-building TETRA network deployments, including airports and metro systems, where recent terrorist attacks have raised the profile of the need for comprehensive emergency radio coverage in confined spaces. Although many public venues are now covered by TETRA, the extent to which networks are deployed is simply not good enough in over half of these venues. There is a need to significantly enhance the global TETRA footprint. Government bodies are now beginning to recognise this and facilitate new deployments as well as upgrades to existing TETRA networks. Andrew has already deployed TETRA networks in a variety of European and Middle Eastern rail systems and airports for example. One of the biggest obstacles to comprehensive countrywide TETRA network deployment is changing the mindset of individual organisations to recognise the growing need for investing the necessary funds to facilitate blanket coverage indoor or out. Another challenge is securing financial support from the government to facilitate these projects. The very nature of TETRA means that organisations deploying TETRA networks cannot afford to compromise on quality of service, but the economic downturn has perhaps meant that budget holders are demanding more from their suppliers.

Cost considerations Suppliers must recognise the need to help their customers to work in the most cost-efficient manner possible. Now more than ever TETRA network deployments and upgrades need to consider both cost and network efficiency. However, this doesn’t always imply that capital expenditure investments should be reduced, but rather that the onus now falls on the supplier to help buyers best future-proof their TETRA networks adequately to


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information on the beat and immediately transfer it back to a central system, eliminating the need to return to the office to share important findings before visiting another location. Information shared includes text, images and videos. Next generation The next generation of TETRA is already coming to market with the development of TETRA Enhanced Data Services (TEDS), which is designed to meet the need for faster data speeds. It is likely that data rates will accelerate in the future which, combined with the development of ever more powerful TETRA radio devices, promises to support a whole new range of applications. Video, for example, could become an increasingly important tool in fighting crime for police forces around the world, and higher bandwidth services such as video demand even better network coverage and capacity, especially if they are to work indoors.

ensure an appropriate long-term return on investment. Although projects may require more careful budgeting and planning, the recession is unlikely to take a significant overall toll on TETRA deployments, which is encouraging news in terms of pushing the development of the technology forwards in the long term. TETRA has already evolved from what was

primarily a high-quality voice platform to a fullyfledged integrated voice and data communications network. With advances in both network infrastructure and device manufacturing, it seems like there is huge potential to exploit the ongoing use of TETRA to the advantage of the emergency services. For example, police forces in the UK are already using mobile data solutions to capture

Emergency Services Times May 2010

New challenges That said, the future certainly looks rosy for TETRA. With security rising higher on every local and national government agenda, it is now the time for suppliers to stand up and educate the relevant authorities and organisations as to how they can best improve and enhance existing TETRA networks to cope with new challenges. www.commscope.com/andrew

Author: Andrea Casini, VP Sales and Marketing EMEA, Andrew Solutions


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Managing emergency communications in Andalusia As an old adaggio says, ‘Who has the information, has the power’. For this reason the emergency services invest both time and money into getting reliable and current communication systems so they can support both everyday health emergencies and extreme situations – such as mass casualty incidents and disasters. In Andalusia, EPES is responsible for the response to and coordination of both of these situations, with the management of emergency communications one of its most critical tasks. Besides the usual challenges that face any emergency communication system, in Andalusia we have to deal with the second largest region in Spain, covering a total area of 87.6km2 (33.8sqmiles) and including a huge range of terrains and heights. The region’s 945km (587miles) of coastline, peaks such as the Mulhacen in Sierra Nevada, the desert areas in Almeria, in South East Andalusia, and the humid marshes in western province of Huelva, mean we have to ensure we can communicate effectively within any area under our responsibility.

The possible pitfalls of having three different systems that require specific procedures are avoided by intensive training. For EPES, Andalusia is divided is eight county services. Although each one has its own coordination centre and different resources all share the same protocols and procedures. Besides Mobile ICUs and ambulances staffed with technicians, nurses and doctors, each county service has its own logistics support vehicle to attend mass casualty incidents. Our current communications system is analogue VHF trunked, which is contracted to a prestigious

Portable transceptor using direct communications.

Fixed transceptor using trunking communications.

Spanish company that utilises repeaters located in and around Andalusia. This system ensures communications are maintained with the terrestrial EPES teams doing their routine jobs. This system is backed up by two others: GSM, used to provide a voice service and as a safe way to communicate patient data; and GPRS, used by the onboard terminal assigned to each vehicle that transmits the location of the incident to the staff and calls on police or fire and rescue service assistance if necessary. Security and reliability For a year now Seville province has been testing the SIRDEE system (Spanish for Spanish emergency digital radio communications system). It uses a technology very similar to TETRAPOL that doesn’t quite reach this system’s security levels but has achieved very high levels of performance in data security and reliability. The provider of this system is the same as for the trunked system. In every province in the region, EPES has foreseen a failure in the trunked system that supports routine voice communications; all the devices have been set in direct mode in the VHF range to ensure, although with a smaller coverage, reliable voice communications. In this way we can communicate with all the teams even

Emergency Services Times May 2010

in the worst conditions. So as not to be forced to rely on an external provider, and to have improved resilience, EPES has purchased a voice VHF repeater. For responding to disasters, EPES has a mobile repeater located in the logistics support vehicle of each province (Cadiz, the most southern province, has two of these vehicles). This repeater works in the VHF band and is used during mass gathering events, such as the Jerez Moto Grand Prix or the El Rocio pilgrimage. It can also be deployed when resources are deployed in an area not covered by the VHF trunked system. Intensive training The possible pitfalls of having three different systems that require specific procedures are avoided by intensive training. This ensures that emergency communications, thanks to any of the systems, will always be possible in EPES. Nevertheless, although the systems work, we advocate the set-up a network of repeaters with digital TETRA technology. Unfortunately this system requires an expensive investment but would provide a very reliable communication system and the training need would be reduced. Also, we could forget the problem of managing three different networks and the associated interoperability issues. www.epes.es

Author: Juan Olegario Conde, TES (Emergency Health Technician), EPES – 061, Cadiz, Spain.


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Ownership options and outsourcing As blue light authorities face ever-increasing pressures on their budgets, cost savings may lie in both reviewing asset ownership options and outsourcing their vehicle fleet management. Support services companies, such as VT Group (VT), asset manage fleets across a range of market sectors and typically show savings of up to 20 percent over the life of the contract, although this will obviously vary with the size and variables of the operation. By contractors taking the risks associated with providing the assets and services, emergency services can benefit from cost reduction, asset guarantee availability, new facilities and infrastructure as well as being free to concentrate on their core business. Ownership options Many blue light authorities purchase their vehicles – an opportunity therefore exists to release the cash tied up by selling the vehicles to a supplier and leasing them back over an agreed term. This approach not only generates one cash payment but also transfers the residual risk to the supplier. Looking specifically at the police in VT Group fulfils a Highways Agency support contract. England, there are 35,000 police benefit from maintenance and other services being vehicles operated over an average term of four outsourced to a third party under a fleet years, with average costs ranging from £15,000 to management contract. This may include the £35,000 per vehicle – this could generate one cash maintenance risk being transferred to the payment of £600m. contractor. Whatever option is chosen for asset ownership, the effective use of these assets requires comprehensive programme management, which can be carried out by the authority, or can be partially or wholly outsourced.

The authority can benefit from the guarantee of vehicle availability, new facilities and infrastructure and being free to concentrate on their core business.

There are four basic options for asset ownership by the authority and contractor: • Outright purchase: the authority uses its own money, or borrowed money, to buy the asset outright, bearing all ownership costs – including the risk on residual values, and all operational costs • Contract hire: the contractor finances the purchase of new assets and provides other services such as maintenance, in return for a fixed monthly charge • Finance lease: a contractor purchases the asset and the authority makes regular rental payments for the lease, bearing all the costs of ownership including risks on residual values, cost of maintenance etc • Hire purchase: very similar to a finance lease, except there is an option to purchase the asset at the end of the agreement. Assets owned by, or leased to, the authority can

Availability-based contracting Availability-based contracting involves the transfer of asset availability responsibility from the authority to a contractor. It is underpinned by the approach that risks are allocated to whoever is best placed to manage them; certainly a contractor is

The New Dimensions fleet.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

better prepared, in many cases, to manage the many uncertainties and risks associated with complex procurements. The benefit of any resultant cost reduction can typically be shared between the authority and contractor. By taking the risks associated with providing the assets and services, the authority can also benefit from the guarantee of vehicle availability, new facilities and infrastructure and being free to concentrate on their core business. Cost savings The definition of assets is very broad and is only restricted by the blue light authorities’ own parameters on what they wish to outsource. The availability contracting model could be extended to include tooling and test equipment, medical equipment etc. Simon Purchon, Director of Business Development, VT’s Critical Asset business, said, “There are specific areas where cost savings can be made. These include optimal maintenance regimes, a reduction in vehicle variations, generation of third party income to absorb overheads, and the removal of hidden costs within the authorities’ core business, including health and safety management, accounting and administration. “Outsourcing services companies, such as VT, are well placed to help authorities review both their options and deliver a robust, sustainable and costeffective solution bespoke to their operational needs.” www.vtplc.com/emergencyservices


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Data management solution improves service delivery Infoterra, a wholly owned subsidiary of EADS Astrium, has launched SAFEcommand™, a suite of products designed specifically to address the modern challenges faced by public safety and emergency organisations such as the police, fire and rescue services and ambulance fleets. SAFEcommand integrates core data management, mobile and emergency response solutions to increase operational effectiveness and service delivery for both ‘blue light’ and homeland security organisations. Key benefits for emergency services will include improved access to the latest incident information, improved response times and the accurate real-time location of resources. A central system for data consolidation and management also ensures the seamless delivery of critical operational response information to mobile resources. SAFEcommand can also play a key role in the effective data consolidation and management process prior to the deployment of critical risk information to frontline resources. Mobile data The Infoterra solution takes advantage of the latest GIS-based systems and real-time mobile data communication to optimise crew and appliance resources. It also offers full support for multi-agency data sharing. “SAFEcommand is an important addition to Infoterra’s expanding portfolio of public safety solutions, and our combination of integrated

SAFEcommand™ Data Management products enable frontline personnel to manage and rapidly access up-to-date and accurate information for emergency and operational needs.

software, comprehensive GIS data, resilient mobile communications and national managed services capability makes Infoterra an ideal partner for major public safety projects,” commented Dave Fox, Infoterra’s CEO. “Infoterra already has a proven track record in the emergency services sector – our Vehicle Mounted Data System for example is the fire service’s most widely used solution, with over 1300 vehicles already deployed, while our VTracker™ visual resource tracking system allows mobile resources to be tracked in real-time on aerial photography or maps using a range of communication bearers including TETRA,” adds Dave Fox. “With SAFEcommand we can now extend our offering, bringing efficient and flexible contingency planning

and emergency response to a much broader audience.” SAFEcommand Mobile products support the effective deployment of command and control information to mobile resources in the field, and include software systems for mobile use in vehicles. Solutions include Vehicle Mounted Data System, Gateway for the dynamic capture of resource location messages and data, an automatic information update service and mobile PDA messaging. In addition, SAFEcommand Emergency provides a strategic, efficient and flexible solution for the creation of contingency plans and emergency response. Improved service delivery Paul Warner, Director of Public Safety at Infoterra, added, “SAFEcommand can help public safety and emergency organisations deliver on their critical Duty of Care objectives through the provision of real-time location intelligence for staff and vehicles, integrated operations planning and response, and full mobile data and satellite communications. Our product suite also features unrivalled access to the latest geospatial data – from in-depth 2D datasets detailing key incident intelligence, to the industry’s highest resolution 3D cityscapes to increase operational effectiveness and service delivery for blue light and homeland security organisations.” www.infoterra.co.uk

Motorola announces two-way radio enhancements Motorola has recently announced to its dealer DCRS Ltd industry-first enhancements for its MOTOTRBO™ professional digital two-way radios and systems. MOTOTRBO™ is a digital communications technology platform that combines exceptional twoway radio with digital technology to deliver increased capacity, exceptional voice quality and extended battery performance. It provides integrated data applications such as text messaging and customised applications via Motorola’s applications.

Motorola continues to build upon the platform with the launch of the industry’s first Transmit Interrupt Suite as well as new portables and mobiles. The new Transmit Interrupt Suite allows MOTOTRBO™ users to interrupt conversations during an emergency or to deliver business-critical communications exactly when and where it’s needed via the voice interrupt, remote voice de-key and emergency voice interrupt features. Transmit Interrupt is an ideal solution for public works agencies, utilities, private security and manufacturing, to help them increase employee safety and efficiency. With Dynamic Mixed Mode it now allows MOTOTRBO™ radios in digital mode, MOTOTRBO™ radios in analogue mode and

legacy analogue radios to communicate on the same MOTOTRBO Repeater channel New repeaters are also being added to the growing system line-up. It will deliver high-power capability, which helps to improve coverage for users such as emergency services, operating across a wide area or within large building structures including hospitals, or shopping. With 16-channel capability, it operates in analogue or digital mode and supports two simultaneous voice or data paths in TDMA digital. With its TDMA digital technology, MOTOTRBO™ provides additional benefits over alternate digital technologies, including lower infrastructure costs, longer battery life and advanced features.

Emergency Services Times May 2010

About DCRS DCRS is based in Cambridgeshire, with a regional office in Chesterfield and three others situated in Ellesmere Port, Bristol and Scotland. With 20 years’ experience in two-way radio communications, the company applies these technologies for its customers in areas such as retail, construction, government, utilities, security, transport, public safety, hospitality and events. All equipment comes from a professional and well-organised company, which still believes in the old tale of ‘quality and value found in a personalised service’. www.mototrbo.co.uk www.dcrs.co.uk


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Leading light NightSearcher has the solution Colin Howard, NightSearcher’s Managing Director, began manufacturing products in 1989 – designing and specialising in rechargeable lighting solutions. These products were specifically supplied to the police, fire and rescue services and industrial markets, where the company has developed a high reputation for quality and service. NightSearcher’s continued success and gradual expansion is aided by the dynamic nature of health and safety requirements, coupled with the demands from both new and existing market sectors. It is constantly evolving to meet the ever-changing needs of a diverse customer base. The company’s product range now includes high quality and carefully selected searchlights, hand lamps, floodlights, flashlights and head torches. Many products are now exported to countries throughout the world. NightSearcher is registered to ISO 9001:2000 standard and has products listed with NATO stock codes. Modern UK manufacturing Since its creation, NightSearcher has constantly improved its internal organisation in order to meet the growing demand. Now,

The Solaris range of portable lighting systems.

NightSearcher’s UV flashlights are designed specifically for forensic applications and crime investigation.

with its many years of experience, the company represents modern UK manufacturing and remains a customer and solutions led company. The Solaris range of portable lighting systems has a newly designed lamp head, which is equipped with an internal aluminium heat sink system and a polycarbonate front lens, making it extremely strong. It uses 18 high-powered CREE® LEDs per head, making it incredibly powerful and giving light output of up to 12,000 lumens. The range offers high/low/flashing options and is designed to pulse every 30 seconds when the battery is running low. It comes with a red ‘standby’ LED allowing the user to locate the lamp when not in use. With advancing technology, the Solaris range is now equipped with an emergency function whereby in the event of a power cut, while charging, the units will automatically illuminate. Enhanced by highly advanced optics to give an optimum light output, the units are supplied and incorporated in a robust outdoor case with an unlimited lifetime guarantee. The complete system can be assembled in seconds. NightSearcher’s UV flashlights are compact and lightweight, utilising the latest in UV technology. These products are designed specifically for forensic applications and crime investigation. Manufactured in a durable aluminium casing, they are water and shock resistant, with two versions available – the 365nm rechargeable torch, ideal for Smartwater detection and the 395nm nonrechargeable, perfect for general applications.

Fingerprint lamp

The Latent-Lite is the perfect fingerprint lamp.

The Latent-Lite is manufactured by NightSearcher and developed in partnership with the Directorate of Forensic Services of the Metropolitan Police. It is the perfect fingerprint lamp intended for forensic applications. This product is designed to connect to the various power sources (Puma Latent torch or NiMH power pack). Utilising its 20W halogen bulb and computerdesigned reflector it gives the best possible light output for detecting fingerprints, further enhanced by a borosilicate diffused lens. www.nightsearcher.co.uk

Textbook education in critical care Whether you’re new to emergency care or an experienced practitioner the Critical Care Transport book (ISBN: 13978-0-7637-1223-5) from Jones and Bartlett Learning has information relevant to your practice. As a critical care paramedic working on a HEMS service I have found this text valuable in my education and in preparing me for my examinations. Of the 1034 pages over 23 chapters all but two are relevant to current UK practice with excellent explanations of not only skills that are performed but also theoretical knowledge in the developing field of critical care. Explanations of fundamental

procedures such as ventilator settings and the interpretation of basic biochemical studies are clear and precise, although you have to anglicise some of the units of measurements and terminology. As well as the paramedic profession I feel that this text is also of great use to those in the nursing profession who are entering the critical care field for the first time or who are looking to be involved in transport medicine as part of their primary role. This is due to the clear explanations of critical care interventions covered such as central line insertion, haemodynamic

Emergency Services Times May 2010

monitoring and management of the burn patient. I found the text very useful to research and understand numerous critical care concepts although I do feel that like many text books that its written style is not one that you can read cover to cover but rather one that you can dip in and out of. Of particular use were the step-by-step skill drill illustrations – useful when studying skills that are infrequently used in practice but that may need to be used in an emergent situation. The case studies at the end of the chapters allow you to review your learning in context to that in which it will be used, at the bedside. All in all this publication is one that any person intending to take their knowledge and practice to the next level will do well in obtaining. www.jblearning.com

Author: Mike Page, Paramedic.


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Marine spill simulation tool

gency care is rarely straightforward, especially in the pre-hospital environment. We hope this manual will help the practitioner to have underpinning knowledge to perform those skills safely and to the greatest patient benefit.” The book is available from both Waterstones and Amazon.

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Healthcare product catalogue

www.coventry.ac.uk

A unique and sophisticated marine spill simulation tool has been developed to help many different users prepare for a chemical spill at sea. The software application was developed by National Chemical Emergency Centre (NCEC), part of the AEA Technology Group, and BMT Argoss, a global specialist provider of marine environmental information. The tool has been designed to primarily support the emergency services in case of more complex chemical spillages, particularly when two or more substances combine to form chemical compounds, taking into account tidal patterns and weather changes. It can also be used as a planning tool by port authorities, shipping companies handling chemicals, chemical manufacturers and local authorities. www.the-ncec.com

Paramedic procedures manual

Pocket light source

tects the ankles, instep and shin bone. There is also cut protection up to class 2, which is particularly important when working with chain saws. A sophisticated shock absorption system gently protects the spine and a choice of three different orthopaedic insoles enables individual fitting for comfort. The CrossTech® membrane, which has been incorporated into the FIRE HERO® prevents the penetration of liquids, bacteria and even viruses into the interior. www.haix.com

Lone worker security mobile application Quiqlite Pro is the world’s only hands-free, 100 percent concealed light source for your uniform shirt pocket. This compact, ultra-lightweight, weatherproof gadget features a computer circuit with a 10-minute battery saving auto-off feature, independent dual LED activation and a new safety strobe mode. The clear, adjustable LED lens and adjustable arm will help users set the perfect lighting angle for their needs, whether clipping it to a pocket, belt, equipment vest, cap or report book. www.thomasjacks.co.uk

Airwave analysis tools for TETRA networks

Jangro, the UK’s leading group of independent distributors of hygiene, cleaning, janitorial and catering supplies for the UK healthcare sector, has released a new 160-page catalogue featuring an even larger range of specialist products. Many of the products featured bear the new ‘NHS Approved’ logo, such as Clinell sanitising wipes and sprays designed to kill Swine Flu. Jangro has doubled its ‘Infection Control’ range due to market requirements. The range includes medical sanitiser; bactericidal, virucidal and sporicidal products that deal with MRSA, HIV and C Difficile; disposable latex gloves and holders; and alcohol hand gels. The catalogue features many new products for 2010, like Jangro’s handysized disinfectant surface wipes, biohazard and sharps disposal kits, shoe covers, torches and rechargeable batteries. An exclusive Infection Control wallchart highlights the correct procedures of the safe removal of bodily fluids, spills and sharps.

Connexion2 has launched a new BlackBerry application for lone workers, which enables them to obtain help if they are at risk of attack or abuse. Identicom Mobile allows users much of the functionality of Connexion2’s lone worker device (LWD) from their BlackBerry or other smartphone. Because many lone workers only face risk infrequently, Connexion2 recognised that they do not necessarily require a designated device.

www.jangro.net

Two Coventry University lecturers have written a comprehensive book for qualified paramedics and students, which underlines clinical procedures in pre-hospital care. The Manual of Clinical Paramedic Procedures by Pete Gregory and Ian Mursell reviews the available literature surrounding the application of key skills, challenges some current practices and offers recommendations based on the findings. Co-author Pete Gregory said, “The application of clinical skills in emer-

Syntech has added two new modules to its market-leading Airwave Call Detail Records (CDRs) Analysis and Reporting Tool for the TETRA network. The Billing Module allows users to easily analyse and report key billing parameters to help them deliver an efficient service while keeping track of costs. The Data Service Analysis Module provides users with the information they need to optimise their use of the Airwave data services. Understanding how data is being used and charged for enables costs to be minimised and Airwave services to be managed in the most efficient way. www.syntechsystems.com

Firefighter boot

The FIRE HERO® is a revolutionary new firefighter boot from HAIX®. A brand-new, patented lace-zipper system ensures the boot can be fitted perfectly and securely in mere seconds, while an ingenious system pro-

Emergency Services Times May 2010

Many workers carry a BlackBerry or other smartphone, so a mobile-based lone worker safety device is more suitable. The application is easy to download and install, and because it utilises the same functionality as the LWD, such as the ‘Amber Alert’ and ‘Red Alert’ features, this provides ease of use between workers who may be using a mix of dedicated and non-dedicated devices. If a worker finds him or herself at risk, a ‘Red Alert’ can be activated via a dedicated key on the BlackBerry, even when its keypad is locked. www.connexion2.com


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Human factors training Have you ever wondered why senior police officers, fire officers or lone worker paramedics make serious errors of judgement, why pilots fly into mountains or surgeons remove the wrong kidney? It is not that any of these people lack the knowledge or skill to do their jobs. It is not that they set out to 'get it wrong'. Rather that they have the same potential vulnerabilities as the rest of us. 'To err is human' – understanding the potential for making errors is an important step along the road to developing strategies to prevent those very human errors from becoming catastrophes. Which factors help to ensure that teams of technically competent people working together achieve their collective and individual goals while maintaining high standards of professionalism and safety? Over 30 years ago this was one of the questions that required an answer from the American Aviation Industry to the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) in an attempt to prove to the FAA that everything was being done to prevent further aircraft accidents and incidents. At that time over 75% of aviation accidents were attributed to ‘pilot error’. It became clear that advances in technology made the likelihood of an aircraft having an accident reduce significantly. Therefore, it was incumbent upon the airlines to investigate other ways to ensure the safety of their aircraft and passengers. The answer was to focus on the nontechnical skills of the operating crews. This included developing training that looked at increasing awareness in areas such as communication skills, decision-making processes, situation awareness, stress, leadership and teamwork, and threat and error management. Since that time the aviation industry has been at the forefront of numerous studies examining the impact of ‘human performance and limitations’ on the success, or otherwise, of working in highly technical, critical, environments. The aviation model has been adapted by many ‘critical’ industries. It is widely recognised in the petrochemical, nuclear, shipping and more recently, the emergency services sectors that ‘human error’ accounts for the vast majority of accidents and incidents that occur in the working environment. The term ‘human factors’ has now become synonymous with the ability of high performing teams to operate in highly technical, often stressful, environments and be better able to handle critical events and crisis. Cognitive and social factors For many years, psychologists have been interested in the cognitive and social factors that affect workers’ performance and minimise error occurrence. Human error cannot be eliminated; it is an essential facet of the human condition. Professionals will always try to avoid making errors. Unfortunately even the most highly trained and motivated professionals will make mistakes. However with suitable understanding of human factors and appropriate training, teams can trap or mitigate the consequences of any such errors. Human factors refer to environmental, organisational and job factors, and human and individual characteristics, which influence behaviour at work in a way that can affect health and safety. A simple way to view human factors is to think about three aspects: the job, the individual and the organisation and how they impact on

people’s health and safety-related behaviour. The study of human factors in critical team performance helps us to manage risk. It is best thought of as the study of those characteristics that make us so much more intelligent and versatile than computers. But these human attributes that allow us to be highly adaptive, creative and imaginative come with a price. This very flexibility and originality makes us unsuitable for tasks requiring precision and repetition.

Human error cannot be eliminated; it is an essential facet of the human condition. Human factors have been studied more intensively in aviation than in any other field. Each one of the emergency services can, and has, benefited from these lessons. A firefighter/ paramedic/police officer’s job is not like that of a pilot but they share one important common component, the ‘Mark 1 Human Brain’. When competent emergency service professionals make mistakes it is not because they suddenly lose their technical skills (knowledge or motor skills) as these are in their long-term memory. On a bad day it is their non-technical skills (awareness and organisation) that are degraded and prevent the effective deployment of their technical skills. This explains how it is that good people make bad errors. The extent to which patients and members of the public are harmed by well-intended emergency service practice is now well documented. Newspaper headlines are rarely forgiving when an instance of ‘human error’ leads to a tragic incident. Modern emergency service practice has unprecedented power but is inherently complex and dangerous. When this power is delivered using the fallible human brain we gain flexibility and sensitivity but cannot avoid the potential for error. Safer practices and procedures require defences against lapses in human performance. It also requires us to understand our own strengths and weaknesses plus those of our colleagues, and the systems in which we work. Improvement is up to us. Consider the following scenarios: 1. You are an emergency care practitioner working alone on a dark and stormy night when you are called to a road traffic accident on a country lane. There are several casualties requiring advanced care. Due to the current volume of calls versus availability of assets the control can only send you a double ECA Crew (A&E Support). 2. You are the senior fire officer on call when you

Emergency Services Times May 2010

get called to a major fire in a warehouse facility. On arrival, due to the risk of explosion from gas cylinders, the fire control unit has been positioned 1100m from the building and not in line of sight. How do you share the mental models of the firefighters already in scene before developing a strategy? 3. You are the senior officer in the police control when a situation develops where a child the age of 16 has been seen in a park by a member of the public with what appears to be a handgun. A PCSO has indicated that he has seen this individual with this item some weeks before and it is a toy. Firearms and other officers are at the edge of the crowded park ready to intervene if authority is given. 4. You are a consultant cardiac surgeon, about to perform major heart surgery on a five-year-old child. Most of the operating team you know, but at the last minute there has been a change of anaesthetist who is a former girlfriend. These are all hypothetical scenarios, which are undoubtedly potential pressure situations. What can be done to absolutely minimise risk? How can you get the group to perform outstandingly as a team? What checks and balances are there in place to ensure a satisfactory outcome to the event? Can the team’s defences be breached? Critical Team Performance The Critical Team Performance programme is a modular programme that ranges from half a day to two days in duration that aims to create a better understanding of personality, behaviour, error management, team dynamics and appropriate communication skills to enhance the performance, safety, efficiency and morale of critical teams and reduce the instances of error that could potentially lead to a catastrophic failure. The three main areas focused upon are: 1. Developing your Leadership environment 2. Developing high performance, action orientated teams 3. Improving an organisation’s intrinsic resistance to human fallibility. Aviation has learned the hard way that human error is a killer; this is why human factors training are mandated for all aircrews. There is obvious synergy with this and the emergency services role; this is why some services are already researching the tangible and measurable benefits to this training for elements of their services. Specialist Operational Support is a leading provider of training to the public sector and would be happy to discuss this training with any interested party. www.thesosgroup.co.uk

Author: Phil Smith CRMI, Human Factors Specialist, Specialist Operational Support


70 | VEHICLES

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Bespoke community contact vehicle enters service When Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service needed a community contact vehicle it seemed a natural choice to go to FAME Commercials to design and build a unit to take out on the road and into the heart of the community.

Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service’s Community Contact Point (CCP) was opened in Portsmouth in 2008 after the closure of Copnor fire station. Further development of this project saw a vision to take that resource right into the heart of the community, with the establishment of a mobile operating unit in the Portsmouth area. And what better way to do it than with a bespoke built vehicle that can double as a community outreach vehicle and incident control post as required. Chief Officer John Bonney, Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, said, “The community contact point provided a hub for fire and rescue operations in the Portsmouth area and a base for Community Link, Youth Support and community safety officers. By introducing mobile contact points, supported by teams to help reduce the risk of fires and other emergencies, we are able to meet members of local communities face to face and address areas of developing risk on a geographical basis. This is a real community asset that we can share with others to help deal with local problems.” Multi-purpose space There was need for the available space to be multi-purpose – as well as being a community contact point there may be a need to use it as an incident command vehicle. With over 20 years’ experience in the building and design of these specialist vehicles, FAME Commercials seemed the obvious choice to design and build it. Based on a Citroën Relay cab and using FAME-

patented geodetic space frame chassis, the vehicle has a lift up flap side with detachable awning sides and front. This all but doubles the size of the unit without needing to upgrade to an HGV licence or drive and store a large and cumbersome vehicle. The vehicle also boasts a kitchen and toilet for staff comfort as well as a smart screen, television screen, three control posts with cabling for computers and a satellite link back to service headquarters. “FAME Commercials pride themselves on their quality of workmanship, and with close negotiations between us and the end user we are able to design a vehicle that matches and often exceeds their needs and expectations," says Jennie Bussandri, Managing Director of FAME Commercials. “Our geodetic space frame chassis gives an incredibly low step in height so there’s no need for an expensive and heavy wheelchair lift and flights of steps."

In addition to the Portsmouth vehicle, Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service plans to introduce community contact points in Southampton and Basingstoke in April 2011 and will consider introducing community contact points in other areas of the county in the future. FAME Commercials would like to take this opportunity to pass on its sincere condolences to the families and colleagues of those Hampshire firefighters who died recently. The company’s thoughts go out to those left behind. FAME’s links with the emergency services puts the company in contact with their frontline staff. These people regularly risk their own lives in the interests of public safety and the company would like to show its appreciation for the work they do. www.fame-vehicle.co.uk

Steam-cleaned machines Matrix Cleaning Systems, the UK's only manufacturer of a range of commercial steamcleaning machines has recently supplied more steam-cleaning machines to the North East Ambulance Service, after supplying two SDV8000 machines in March 2009. The units are used for valeting and deep-cleaning the patient areas on the service’s fleet of ambulances. The new machines will work alongside the existing machines giving a much-needed increase in cleaning capacity and enabling the North East Ambulance Service to maintain and increase its already high standards of patient care. The SDV8000's are steam, detergent and vacuum machines capable of removing bacteria and providing a deep clean on almost any floor, wall or upholstery surface. High temperature steam penetrates deep into surfaces, sanitising and removing bacteria in a wide variety of medical environments. The integral vacuum ensures surfaces are left clean and dry and the machines are supplied with a complete set of tools and accessories. Matrix has its head office based in Lancashire and has a network of over 100 carefully selected trade dealers, who are able to provide a full nationwide distribution service for their steam clean machines supported by a thorough maintenance service and extensive availability of spare parts. www.steamcleanuk.com

Emergency Services Times May 2010


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New Astra debuts in full police livery The new Vauxhall Astra is ready to enter police service with the potential for the highest level of integration with emergency service systems. The Astra has been the backbone of beat policing across the 54 UK police forces since it was first launched in 1979. Approximately one in five of all ‘panda’ cars in use across the country are Astras with many of them equipped by Vauxhall’s turnkey police preparation facility, Special Vehicle Operations (SVO). Based at Millbrook, SVO receives vehicles direct from the factory, builds them to the required specification and then delivers the completed beat car to the constabulary. With the arrival of the new generation, Astra takes another step further along the path of integration of the emergency services functions into the base vehicle. From launch, the Astra will be available with an instrument console incorporating integrated switch panels configured for police radio header units such as the Cleartone, Motorola, Sepura and Icom. The new Astra also features increased capacity for fitting further emergency service equipment, such as mobile data terminals, video capture and multiple transceivers, seamlessly into the vehicle’s

interior without the need for custom trim installations. The typical range of emergency services lighting options are also available including a range of LED lightbars, headlamp flash, grille lights, bumper interceptor lights and rear reds. Comprehensive validation To ensure the dependability and reliability demanded of a law enforcement vehicle, the Astra and its systems have undergone a rigorous test programme. Physical rig testing was used to replicate a lifetime of structural inputs into the vehicle, which in addition to other physical tests

Emergency Services Times May 2010

and computer simulations, resulted in Vauxhall’s most comprehensive validation of any product for the emergency services. Vauxhall’s manager of vehicle conversions Dick Ellam said, “With the new Astra, Vauxhall is offering the UK’s police constabularies a vehicle which is not only superior dynamically to its predecessor but which also has the scope for much improved integration with the system’s law enforcement demands. We are particularly proud that this integration allows the devices needed by the police service to be mounted within the standard architecture of the car’s interior. The new Astra is the complete package for the emergency services.” www.gm.com



EST May 2010