february 2012

Updates

HHS Secretary Sebelius Announces Environmental Justice Strategy

U.S. Health & Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius has announced that, along with other federal agencies, HHS has released its 2012 Environmental Justice Strategy and Implementation Plan, which outlines the steps that will be taken to protect U.S. communities facing greater health and environmental risks.

Preparedness

Emergency Responses to CDLs: The Hidden Dangers

by Christina Spoons -

Meth labs are another clear and present danger not only to individual users and the nation as a whole, but also to the lab workers, innocent "civilians" living in the same neighborhood, and - most of all, perhaps - firefighters and other first responders who are risking their own lives to save others, specifically including the known criminals operating the labs.

Updates

HHS Secretary Sebelius Announces Next Stage for Providers Adopting Electronic Health Records

"We know that broader adoption of electronic health records can save our health care system money, save time for doctors and hospitals, and save lives," said Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.  "We have seen great success and momentum as we've taken the first steps toward adoption of this critical technology. As we move into the next stage, we are encouraging even more providers to participate and support more coordinated, patient-centered care."

Updates

New MSA XCell Sensor for H2S-LC Offers 0.1 ppm Resolution

MSA's new XCell Sensor, designed for H2S-LC (low concentration) use with MSA's ALTAIR® 4X Multigas Detector, provides 0.1 ppm H2S resolution with a range up to 100 ppm.

Updates

TSA Education Program Expands to Employees in All 50 States

he Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has announced that the TSA Associates Program, a program that allows Transportation Security Officers to advance their education and career development in the field of homeland security, is now represented in all 50 states.

Updates

Morphix Technologies Offers Training Facilities New Tool to Educate Officers on the Dangers of Toxic Chemicals

A rise in methamphetamine production, hazardous material accidents and chemical suicides has precipitated a demand in officer and responder training for chemical awareness education. Morphix Technologies has created a classroom kit for trainers that include a Chameleon® demonstration unit as well as live training cassettes to demonstrate actual cassette reactions.

Commentary

FINAL REPORT: Information Sharing Across Emergency Management Disciplines

by Joseph Trindal -

Since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, great strides have been made to share information across disciplines, but gaps still remain. Timely, actionable information is needed to effectively protect against and respond to future attacks. This report discusses a multi-discipline, "need-to-share" approach, which includes sharing information within and between communities.

Updates

DHS Announces Grant Guidance for Fiscal Year (FY) 2012 Preparedness Grants

Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano has announced the release of FY 2012 grant guidance and application kits - for seven DHS preparedness grant programs totaling over $1.3 billion - to assist states, urban areas, tribal & territorial governments, non-profit agencies, and the private sector in strengthening the nation's ability to prevent, protect, respond to, and recover from terrorist attacks, major disasters, and other emergencies in support of the National Preparedness Goal.

Resilience

Forensic Incident Responses & Security Preparedness

by Dawn R. Blanche -

Eight "Centers of Excellence" established; a massive international "Challenge" competition; and a stunning, rapidly expanding, interest in the once arcane science and profession of digital forensics and various related fields. Those are but a few of the notable DC3 accomplishments achieved to date, but additional domains and designations are just over the horizon.

Preparedness

IT and the New Fight Against Drug Trafficking & Gangs

by Rodrigo (Roddy) Moscoso -

Tighter laws, high-tech data systems, and considerable operational experience are making it "easier" for law enforcement agencies at all levels of government to fight the unprecedented growth of drug trafficking that is now a major danger in neighborhoods throughout the country. The winner of that fight has yet to be determined.

Healthcare

Addiction in Emergency Services: Coworkers Help, Denial Hurts

by Victor Welzant -

Major stress and constant pressure are all part of the job for emergency-services personnel and other responders. A less obvious but greater danger is caused by drug and alcohol addictions. Professional help is available, but not always wanted. What is most needed, and in the long term most effective, is an all-hands alert to recognize the addiction earlier, provide the help needed, and avoid being judgmental.

Updates

APCO Applauds Congress on a Bipartisan Effort to Provide Public Safety With the Spectrum, Funding & Authority to Launch Nationwide Public Safety Broadband Network

"APCO International thanks our congressional supporters on both sides of the aisle in both chambers of Congress for their dedication to responsibly achieving the build-out of a Public Safety Broadband Network and in supporting Next Generation 9-1-1 technologies," said Gregg Riddle, Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO) International President.

Updates

HHS Secretary Sebelius Announces Major Progress in Use of Health IT

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius has announced that the number of hospitals (and doctors) using health information technology (IT) has more than doubled in the last two years.

Updates

DHS Secretary Napolitano's Senate Testimony on 'Securing America's Future: The Cybersecurity Act of 2012.'

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano discusses the U.S. cybersecurity mission before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs and describes how new legislation will strengthen the federal government's ability to protect the nation.

Reports

FY 2012 Grant Supplemental Resource: Support for Public-Private Collaboration

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has released an important resource for state, tribal, and territory-level efforts to partner with the private sector in emergency management and homeland security initiatives: the Fiscal Year (FY) 2012 Grant Supplemental to Support Public-Private Collaboration.

View Full Report
Updates

LRAD Corporation Introduces The LRAD 2000X

LRAD Corporation, the world's leading provider of long-range acoustic hailing devices (AHDs), has announced the release of its loudest, most powerful long-range acoustic hailing device. The new LRAD 2000X broadcasts highly intelligible voice communication and alarm tones that can be clearly heard and understood over 5 miles away.

Updates

FEMA Seeks Applicants for National Advisory Council

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is seeking qualified individuals from the public and private sector to serve on the National Advisory Council (NAC). The NAC is an advisory committee established in accordance with the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act to ensure effective and ongoing coordination of federal preparedness, protection, response, recovery, and mitigation for natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other man-made disasters.

Updates

Avon's ST53 Mask Gains Approval with German Police

Avon Protection's premier ST53 mask and modular breathing system have been adopted by three German police forces - Munich, Nurnberg & Hildesheim - as part of a major CBRN (chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear) upgrade program.

Updates

CBP Completes Project to Replace Outdated Fencing

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials have announced the completion of construction replacing an estimated 6.1 miles of outdated primary pedestrian fencing along the U.S-Mexico border adjacent to Douglas, AZ. The new fencing will allow agents to see threats more easily thus keeping the communities safer.

Preparedness

NIMS/ICS and Drug-Enforcement Operations - Yes and No

by Stephen Grainer -

Drug trafficking throughout the United States has become such an omnipresent danger that it can be diminished and eventually defeated only by the combined efforts of law-enforcement and intelligence agencies at all levels of government - local, state, and federal. Here, with the names of specific sources necessarily withheld, is a true "Insider's Report" related to the quasi-military federal command, organizational and operational processes, and legal principles that are necessarily involved.

Commentary

Lt. Gen. H. Steven Blum, USA (Ret.), Discussion Centered on the Nation's Drug Threat

Illegal drugs and their second- and third-order effects present what could arguably be the most dangerous and clear existential threat to the American people - more than any other horrific, catastrophic threat. With the ability to touch every citizen, reach every family, and affect every household, no one is completely immune, protected, insulated, or isolated from the effects of this scourge on society.

Commentary

Drug Traffickers, Insurgents & Safe Havens - Lessons Learned from Plan Colombia

by Mark Coomer -

Can the lessons learned from Plan Colombia in the late 1990s be polished, refined, upgraded, and used again to help Mexico deal with its notorious - and notoriously successful - drug cartels, and either stop or at least slow down the current influx of illegal drugs from Mexico into the United States? The most optimistic answer at this time is a firm "Maybe." The difficulties are greater, the stakes are immensely higher, and there are numerous other complexities that must be taken into consideration.

Preparedness

The Most Dangerous Existential Threat: Illegal Drugs

by H. Steven Blum -

The flow of illegal drugs from Mexico into the United States is not a mere "problem" that affects only a few U.S. states along the U.S.-Mexico border, but rather a major national-security threat. Here, a former chief of the U.S. National Guard spells out the complicated details of this clear and present "existential threat," and his recommendations on what should and must be done about it.

Updates

CBP Launches Border Radio Pilot

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency has announced the installation of a pilot AM radio broadcast system designed to better inform the border-crossing public. CBP believes an informed and educated traveler is an efficient traveler, and is always looking for new and more effective ways to communicate with the traveling public; the model of the AM transmitter, used by many highway and traffic authorities, is designed to be an effective tool for CBP.

Updates

Raytheon to Showcase Public Safety Technologies at New California Research Facility

Raytheon has announced that it will dedicate one of the nation's largest public technology and research centers in Southern California. The new center will house actual hands-on solutions that public safety agencies can use to significantly improve not only day-to-day operations but also their responses to major incidents.

Reports

The 2012 State of FEMA Report

The 2012 State of FEMA report shows how utilizing a "whole community" approach has allowed the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to collaborate with federal partners, state, local, tribal, and territorial officials to better prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

View Full Report
Updates

FDA Requests $4.5 Billion for FY 2013 Budget

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has requested appropriations of $4.5 billion to support medical product development, protect patients, improve medical countermeasures, and ensure the safety of the nation's food supply. The fiscal year (FY) 2013 budget request represents a 17 percent increase over the FDA-enacted budget for FY 2012.

Updates

TSA Awards Contracts for Additional Explosives Detection Systems

"This state-of-the-art technology greatly enhances both the security & efficiency of checked baggage screening and I am pleased to see more units headed to U.S. airports," said Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Assistant Administrator for Security Capabilities Robin Kane. "We look forward to continuing to use the best available technologies and providing the highest level of security for travelers."

Reports

FY 2013 National Preparedness Grant Program Vision Document

The fiscal year (FY) 2013 National Preparedness Grant Program (NPGP) seeks to sustain and continue to build on the capabilities to create robust national capacity based on cross-jurisdictional and readily deployable state and local assets.

View Full Report
Updates

DHS Secretary Napolitano Announces Fiscal Year 2013 Budget Request

"Ten years after the September 11th attacks, America is stronger and more secure today, thanks to the strong support of Congress, the tremendous work of the men and women of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and our local, state, and federal partners across the homeland security enterprise," said Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. "The Department's fiscal year (FY) 2013 budget request preserves core frontline priorities by cutting costs, sharing resources across components, and streamlining operations wherever possible."

Updates

Idaho Technology Inc. Seeks FDA Clearance for the Expanded FilmArray Respiratory Panel

Idaho Technology Inc. has announced that it has filed a submission with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for 510(k) clearance of five additional respiratory pathogens for its FilmArray Respiratory Panel, a user-friendly Multiplex PCR assay currently FDA-cleared for 15 respiratory pathogens.

Updates

American Red Cross Unveils New Brand Identity

The American Red Cross officially unveiled its new brand identity with a logo that features the iconic Red Cross in a button, symbolizing the personal participation of volunteers, employees, and supporters in the Red Cross mission. The new identity is a systematic evolution of the 130-year-old organization and is designed to appeal to both long-time Red Cross supporters as well as an entirely new generation of volunteers and donors, who are eager to show their affiliation with the organization.

Updates

Covia Labs Launches Communications Interoperability Software Platform for Public Safety

Covia Labs Inc. has announced the launch of Alert & Respond, a new software platform that offers a cost-effective way for public safety to integrate consumer smartphones and commercially available devices into their operations. Alert & Respond greatly expands the command & control and situational awareness capabilities available to public safety personnel beyond what is available with voice-only communication.

Preparedness

PTSD: The Front Lines of a New Conflict

by Kate Rosenblatt -

The "save rate" of military personnel wounded in battle used to be extremely low. Now it is much higher, thanks in large part to better medicine and improved medical transport (ambulances and helicopters, primarily). However, one unanticipated result has been a huge increase in the survival of personnel suffering from brain injuries - and that situation represents a challenge not just to the wounded veterans, but to all Americans.

Preparedness

The 'Big Business' of Drug Smuggling

by Michael S. Brewer & Lawrence O'Connell -

The U.S. Coast Guard and DHS's Customs & Border Protection Agency have achieved some remarkable interdiction successes in recent years, but so have drug smugglers and cartels. New approaches, tactics, and equipment are needed - along with additional personnel - to achieve a more effective long-term solution to what is now a clear and present danger not only to addicts but to all Americans.

Updates

Ridge Global Launches New Maritime Consulting Team - Flag Bridge

Ridge Global, an international provider of security and risk management services, has announced the launch of Flag Bridge, a new service focused on maritime risk and sovereignty management. The Flag Bridge team includes an elite cadre of former U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) flag officers and other distinguished maritime professionals.

Updates

DHS Secretary Napolitano Announces Rule Proposing Permanent Global Entry Program

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has announced the publication of a final rule that would establish Global Entry - a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) voluntary initiative that facilitates the expedited clearance of pre-approved, low-risk travelers to streamline the international arrival and admission processes at U.S. airports for trusted travelers through the use of biometric identification - as a permanent program.

Updates

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol Selects RescueSim Virtual Reality Technology to Prepare for Airport Incidents

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol has selected the RescueSim Virtual Emergency Response Platform to prepare its emergency services and safety personnel for airport incidents. RescueSim will provide the airport's emergency services with a state-of-the-art training tool that allows crews to simulate a wide range of airport incidents and practice their response strategies for such incidents in a safe and cost-effective way.

Updates

BPSI's Unique Air Monitoring Technology Protects Office Workers from Toxic Chemical Release

Building Protection Systems Inc. (BPSI) has announced that another thought-leading building owner has chosen BPSI's proven next-generation Alpha Sentry One toxin detection system to protect critical executives and employees at an undisclosed headquarters building in the Midwest.

Updates

CDC Releases Its First iPad App

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recently launched its first iPad application - one that makes possible the fast and efficient mobile delivery of CDC's critical health information.

Updates

New Handheld Narcotics Analyzer Gives Edge to Law Enforcement in War on Drugs

Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc., a world leader in serving science, has introduced Thermo Scientific TruNarc, a new handheld narcotics analyzer that gives local law enforcement a significant technological edge in the war on drugs. TruNarc delivers instant and accurate results, thereby reducing time, expense, and the red tape associated with drug-related prosecutions.

Updates

ASC Signal Receives Ground SATCOM Systems Contract

ASC Signal Corporation has been awarded a $1 million contract to build up to 100 3.7-meter X-band antenna systems to support global government communications. These fixed tracking antennas are designed to communicate with the U.S. Department of Defense's Wideband Global Satcom (WGS) constellation in the X-band frequency.

Preparedness

Lessons Learned: The Mass Shootings in Tucson

by Sophia Paros -

In the violent world of the 21st century, there is no way to absolutely guarantee the safety of any one individual - for example, a Congresswoman holding a press conference at a Safeway without security. But, if nothing else, the senseless shooting last year of U.S. Representative Gabriel Giffords and the deaths of six other innocent victims at least proved the efficacy of the nations still relatively new Incident Management System and the life-saving merits of Individual First Aid Kits.

Healthcare

Narcan: The Spray That Saves

by Joseph Cahill -

First question: Should "everyday citizens" - however that term is defined - be given access to potentially harmful medications, including antidotes to dangerous narcotics? Well, perhaps. Second question: What if the medication also saves lives? Now the answer is a much more emphatic "perhaps". The Commonwealth of Massachusetts is working hard to come up with a more definitive answer.

Commentary

DomPrep Goes Mobile

by Martin (Marty) Masiuk -

Busy practitioners need information and want to receive it as quickly as possible. DomPrep meets these requirements with its new Mobile Edition of DomesticPreparedness.com. Easier access and faster connection speeds, with no login or password required, are just a few benefits for modern smartphone users.