Air Force

September 20, 2013

Emergency Management Flight: Keeping Thunderbolts at ready

Tags:
Staff Sgt. LUTHER MITCHELL
56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

Airmen 1st Class Jacob Brewer, 56th Civil Engineer Squadron Readiness and Emergency Management apprentice, examines unexploded ordnance Sept. 10 at the 56th CES REM Flight building. Airmen receive chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosive defense survival skill training prior to deploying.

September is National Preparedness Month. Sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, National Preparedness Month encourages Americans to prepare, plan for and stay informed about emergencies.

Airmen with the 56th Civil Engineer Squadron Readiness and Emergency Management Flight are responsible for ensuring the base stays prepared in case of a crisis.

“We are involved with preparedness year around,” said Staff Sgt. Robert Fanton, 56th CES REM NCO-in-charge of plans and operations. “It’s not just a month for us, because this is our job. If anything happens, we are out there managing the situation. We are the ones who tie all the agencies together and make sure they are communicating and following the right plans.”

The 56th CES includes fire protection, explosive ordnance disposal, readiness and emergency management, design and construction, environmental programs, family housing, and operations and maintenance of the Barry M. Goldwater Range. Most of the agencies responsible for responding to an emergency can all be found within the 56th CES.

“The civil engineer squadron has a really huge role,” Fanton said. “We have carpenters who repair buildings. If the roads go out, we have equipment to fix them. Everybody in CE has a role and we spell out what that role is.”

REM Airmen are involved in all phases of an unexpected crisis. It begins with the installation emergency management plan.

Airmen protect a recreational vehicle from chemical contamination Sept. 10 during chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosives training at the 56th Civil Engineer Squadron Readiness and Energy Management Flight building. Two cover layers are used whenever possible, so the exposed cover, along with any contamination, can be easily removed, safely discarded and replaced.

“We write the installation EM plan, which is where all the checklists we use come from,” Fanton said.

“It includes everything from a terrorist attack to an earthquake. It covers the responsibilities of each agency, and it sets out timelines and the information people need to know.”

REM Airmen are also responsible for the EM program. The program disseminates important information to EM representatives on base.

“Each squadron has a representative who we send information to every quarter,” Fanton said. “When we send out the EM newsletter, it covers different emergency situations that could happen and representatives disseminate it to their squadron.”

When a serious situation occurs, EM representatives will meet at the emergency operations center. The EOC is the central command and control facility responsible for coordinating emergency management across multiple agencies.

“From the EOC we have pretty much the whole base sitting here,” Fanton said. “If the base gets hit by a tornado and it wipes out a building or destroys aircraft, the EOC conducts an activation. From there, emergency support function representatives will coordinate with their units to respond with what they need.”

Each ESF has a seat at the EOC where they can access information and receive updates. From the EOC they can also video conference with the unit command center.

“At each seat is a computer that ESFs can pull up web EOC to communicate with their unit control centers and get accountability,” Fanton said. “They can also pull up the checklist from the emergency management plan relevant to the situation.”

REM Airmen are also responsible for preparedness orientation training, EM representative training, EOC and unit command center training.

“When people get to this base they will get the base preparedness orientation training from us,” Fanton said. “For people who are not first term Airmen it is held when they do their in-processing.
We will go out and brief the local threat and hazards with weather and what to do if sheltering in place. We also go to the First Term Airmen Center and give the same briefing.”

Senior Airman Samatha Heiman, 56th CES REM Flight, works with the EM program. The best part of the job for her is seeing how the planning comes together.

“I enjoy the planning aspect of it, creating the response plans, putting everything into motion and seeing how everything you have put together works,” Heiman said. “If planning goes how you want it to, then everybody is going to do everything properly, and they are going to be trained and be able to protect themselves.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
NEW_1

Luke F-35s visit Columbus AFB

Airman 1st Class Daniel Lile A T-6 Texan II roars overhead as the pilots of two Luke Air Force Base F-35 Lightning IIs prepare to exit their aircraft July 23 at Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi. The pilots are Capt. Nichola...
 
 

Gillespie Loop: Honors Airman who made ultimate sacrifice

BAGRAM AIR FIELD, Afghanistan — The men and women of the 455th Air Expeditionary Wing came together for a road dedication ceremony to honor Master Sgt. Randy Gillespie, a fallen Airman who paid the ultimate sacrifice. Master Sgt. Randy Gillespie was a career fuels specialist who died July 9, 2007, from wounds sustained during small...
 
 

Who’s afraid of a little blood?

I have been in the Air Force for 22 years and have been a medical laboratory technician since the beginning of my career. The medical or clinical laboratory is where specimens are tested to provide information to medical providers who directly assist in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease in patients. After graduating basic...
 

 

Pursue education for career’s sake

Everyone knows education can be a good bullet on an enlisted performance report, but few know the true value of an education in regard to a military career. The pursuit of an education can be just as valuable as the degree acquired at the end. The knowledge acquired in the pursuit of an education can...
 
 
Pg-3--photo-illustration

Candid money talk improves relationship

There are many reasons why people divorce but at the top of the list are lack of communication and finances. That’s why it’s important to combine these two topics to make for a successful long-lasting relationship. “I bel...
 
 

News Briefs July 31, 2015

Total body conditioning class A new total body conditioning class is 6:30 and 9 a.m. Monday and Wednesday. The 6:30 a.m. class is broken into two half hour segments to accommodate squadron or individual physical training. The 9 a.m. class is one hour. The class consists of body weight movements and the use of equipment...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>