CURRENT NEWS . . .
EARLY THANKSGIVING – On Nov 18, 2015 the Florence Wildland Team was treated to a traditional Thanksgiving dinner at the fire station. The dinner was provided and cooked by Oracle CERT and Oracle Firewise members. The annual dinner event is a special thanks for the wildland firefighters who have helped make our community safer by thinning out heavy vegetated areas and making defensible spaces for local Oracle residents.
The day began with a hike along the south side of Oracle and the wildland crew learned where the access gates into Coronado National Forest are located. Several possible lookout points and safety zones were also identified. Upon returning to the fire station a sand box that we use for training, had been set up to mimic the area where the crew had just hiked. Several scenarios were played out on the table and the crew including the OFD on-duty crew practiced fighting a variety of imaginary wildfires.
LATEST CERT/ FIREFIGHTER DRILL – October 17, 2015
On Saturday October 17th, Oracle Firefighters and Oracle CERTs combined for a training exercise that was held at the Oracle Courthouse.
During a large disaster, CERTs can be requested by firefighters to assist with emergency operations. An important role that CERTs provide is by setting up a place for firefighters to rest, cool off and re-hydrate.
The scenario for this drill was to respond to a simulated structure fire, with their CERT trailer and to set up a re-hab station, along with the firefighters doing what they do best...a fast attack on a fire.
At promptly 1300 hours CERTs were dispatched via text message and they responded to the fire station from their homes. Within several minutes a dozen or more CERTs had arrived, divided into teams and selected team leaders. Transportation decisions were made, the CERT trailer was deployed and a quick...but safe response was made to the courthouse. Once the CERTs had set up; the on-duty crew was dispatched to begin suppression operations.
Several minutes later a firefighter simulated a fatigue condition and went to the ground.
Firefighters assisted their fallen team member to the CERT re-hab station where CERTs began by removing his SCBA equipment including his turnout clothing, while also monitoring his vital signs and re hydrating him. All objectives for the exercise were met and although we hope something like this never occurs, we take comfort in knowing that we have such a talented and well trained auxiliary team to assist us when we need it most.
CERTs and OFD/ firefighter staff that took place in the drill shown above are:
(back row): Peter Van Keuren, Dan Piermarini, Cathleen Piermarini, Collins Cochran, Suzie Fairbanks, Kevin Armbrust, and Assist. Fire Chief Robert Jennings, (front row): Doug Johnson, Rachel Opinksy, David Harris, Susie Cochran, Kate Horton, Barbara Haas, Kevin Armbrust, Brian Kirkpatrick, and Fire Chief Larry Southard.
On top of the fire truck are firefighters Thomas "Bubba" Mathews and Michael Parra. Also taking part in the drill were: Admin. Chief Tina Acosta.
OUTSTANDING FIREWISE PROJECTS
Throughout the year, we find that some places and owners really outdo themselves with the firewise mission. Here are our two winners for 2015.
Congratulations goes to John and Karen Medley for winning the 2015 Firewise Private Property award. They are shown here with Firewise Board Co-chairperson Mary Harris and Fire Chief Larry Southard receiving their award.
The Business/ Public award goes to Bradley O. Kaiser, DMD PLLC for his dentist office property on American Avenue in Oracle.
THIRD GRADERS VISIT OFD – (Sept 2015) Oracle firefighters Thomas Mathews and David Selby visited Mrs Dedrick's 3rd grade class to talk about what firefighters do for their communities and how they help neighboring communities during large emergencies.
The students are learning about the September 11th, 2001 World Trade Center disaster. The presentation by Thomas and David was mainly about how firefighters help rescue people in need.
Thomas talked about his recent trip to California where he worked on a large wildfire and David suited up in his turnout gear and crawled through the darkness while the students hid in various places within the classroom. Once the students found they could not hide from the Thermal Imagining Camera (TIC), they were given turns using the TIC to view their classmates.
Shown in the picture is Mrs. Dedrick using the camera; once the lights had been turned off, she could easily view all of her students.
One Less Spark, One Less Wildfire – go to: http://www.wildlandfirersg.org/ for more information!
THE ORACLE EMERGENCY NOTIFICATION SYSTEM (ENS) –
You can't afford not to be on this list for emergency notifications. Click to go to the "ENS" form and be
sure to get any additional numbers (besides your landline) in the system by filling it out and returning it to
Oracle Fire District.