Operations Bases for Major Events
Fellow Fire Service Professionals;
I am researching if and how other departments utilize "operations bases" for major events (weather, disaster, WMD, etc.) in conjunction with their EOC's.
I am a member of Norfolk Fire-Rescue in Norfolk, Virginia. We are a 490+ member, metro/urban fire department providing fire and ems coverage to a population of 240,000 residents over a 54 square mile area. Norfolk is a major maritime shipping center, a regional business center and we have several large public and private shipbuilding and repair facilities. We also provide mutual aid service to the Norfolk Naval Base and a portion of the Little Creek Amphibious Base. Our transient commuter population increases by 150,000 to 250,000 depending on the fleet status.
Our department staffs 14 als engines, 10 als ambulances, 7 ladder companies and 2 haz-mat/technical rescue squads out of 15 station divided into 3 battalions.
To my question;
As a function of our city ICS the fire chief or his designate, accompanied by a small admin staff, respond to the EOC to meet and work with the city manager and other department and agency heads. Policy and direction is promulgated from this central location.
As a function of our department's all hazard ICS we establish an "operations base" (for lack of a better term) where our on-duty assistant chief (shift commander) monitors and directs the field forces in carrying out that policy. We have used this method on several weather and special event related occasions when planning time was available.
We are investigating whether other departments are using a similar system for planned (weather, special event, etc.) or unplanned (disaster, WMD, etc.) emergency events.
If you have any experience, thoughts or written operating procedures for this type of situation I would appreciate your input. I can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for your assistance with this matter.