Current News...
 

Development of Florida's "Operations Level Hazardous Materials Training Program" Completed by Response Technologies

SARASOTA, FL. July 1, 2010 - Keeping Florida in the forefront of hazardous materials response, the State of Florida Division of Emergency Management contracted Response Technologies Corporation in August 2009 to revise and re-develop their "Operations Level Hazardous Materials Training" program. The program, recently completed is due to be released in August of 2010.

The program was developed following the competency requirements of NFPA 472 "Standard for Competence of Responders to Hazardous Materials / Weapons of Mass Destruction Incidents". The standard holds specific "Core" requirements for all responders to hazardous Materials/WMD emergencies. Then, additional "Mission Specific" competencies are outlined for those personnel who have well defined functions such as decontamination, use of personal protective equipment, air monitoring, sampling, evidence preservation/collection and illicit lab response. The newly revised Florida program meets all of these requirements.

The development project included updating the existing operations level program videos segments as well as adding new video content. The final product included a complete instructor guide, student text, note taking guide, supporting materials and the videos in a CDROM / DVD package. In addition, materials are being prepared to support online download and video streaming.

The new program is due to be released in August 2010. Posting of the materials will be on the Florida Division of Emergency Management's webpage at www.floridadisaster.org.

For more information, contact the Florida Division of Emergency Management in Tallahassee, Florida or Response Technologies Corporation.

 

Response Technologies Completes Operational Readiness Evaluation for Saint Louis County, Missouri

SARASOTA, FL. Dec 31, 2009 - Growing in popularity because of its OReval® data management tool, Response Technologies was called upon to provide an Operational Readiness Evaluation (ORE) for Saint Louis County, MO Hazardous Materials Emergency Response Team. The team, which serves the metropolitan areas of Saint Louis County, provides protection to over 1.4 million citizens as well as significant Midwest gateway transportation corridors and infrastructure.

Over a period of several days, Response Technologies' evaluators collected information concerning the hazmat team's operational status. Plans, policies, standard operating procedures, human resources and training records were all reviewed along with the state of readiness for hundreds of pieces of response equipment. This information, along with evaluator comments and improvement recommendations were then fed into Response Technologies' OReval® data management application. This application then enabled Response Technologies to generate a comprehensive report concerning the team's state of readiness. The final report included a summary of evaluator findings and recommendations as well as a detailed line item report covering the assessment elements and the teams capital assets.

Response Technologies Completes Operational Readiness Evaluations (OREs) on 28 Florida Hazardous Materials Response Teams

SARASOTA, FL. Sept 30, 2009 - Under contract with the Florida State Fire Marshall's Office, Response Technologies recently completed a program to rapidly assess the operational readiness of 28 state funded hazardous materials teams.  The project, awarded in mid July 2009, was under a tight timeline due to a DHS grant requirement and the entire project needed to be completed by no later than August 30¾only 45 days.

The assessment methodology used was based upon the Florida State Emergency Response Commissions (SERC) Hazardous Materials Team Assessment Methodology. That methodology was rapidly revised to meet the specific needs of the State Fire Marshall. Then, an existing Response Technologies database application was tailored to capture the data and generate reports for each team and summaries of the entire state's capabilities.

During the month of August, teams from Response Technologies visited each of the 28 funded HazMat Assets to conduct on site evaluations of 282 elements, covering 6 primary focus areas:

  • Plans and Policies

  • Human Resources

  • Training

  • Equipment

  • WMD Response Capabilities, and

  • Grant and Asset Management

In addition, Response Technologies captured data and photographic evidence of the capital assets purchased for these teams with DHS grant funds. All of the data was then compiled into RTC's OReval® data management template. This provided the State Fire Marshall with a single comprehensive data management tool for this and any further evaluations.

Fore more information on the Response Technologies ORE process or the OReval® data management system, contact Douglas Wolfe, President of Response Technologies at 941-371-7849.

Response Technologies Selected to Revise the Florida Operations Level Hazardous Materials Training Program

SARASOTA, FL. June 18, 2009 - Response Technologies was recently awarded the contract to revise the Florida Operational Level Hazardous Materials Training Program. The training program, originally developed by Response Technologies in 1998, is being revised by the Florida Division of Emergency Management in order to align the curriculum with the new training competencies outlined in The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standards.

The project includes the development of an analysis of the current standard of care relating to training of responders to hazardous materials emergencies. This analysis will be used to coordinate the curriculum revision of the Florida State Emergency Response Commission's (SERC's) Public Sector Hazardous Materials Training Guidelines. These guidelines, tied very closely to NFPA training standards, are then used to establish the training curriculum within the State of Florida.

Teamed with Freestyle Productions out of Tallahassee, Response technologies will revise the entire curriculum as well as develop new video material to support the classroom and field instruction of the program.

The finished training program, due to be completed by June 2010, will be made available on DVD and will include instructional materials, student manuals and video presentations for both the Operations Core Competencies as well as Mission Specific Competencies as defined in NFPA 472 "Standard for Competence of Responders to Hazardous Materials/Weapons of Mass Destruction Incidents"

More information can be obtained by contacting Response Technologies Corporation or The Florida Division of Emergency Management.

Response Technologies is Providing Free Electronic Training Needs Analysis to HazMat Teams

Response Technologies recently announced that it would provide free access to its Hazardous Materials Technician Training Needs Analysis. The survey, which is  completed online by each member of a team in approximately 15 minutes, allows the team to gather a general assessment of their members' perception of training strengths and weaknesses. This data is then rolled-up into a summary that can provide the team's leadership with a roadmap for continuing educational needs. Although only one of many assessment methodologies needed to completely analyze training gaps, it does provide a good, general "ten thousand foot" overview of needs.

For a limited time, Response Technologies is offering to provide this survey to teams no cost. The data collected will enable the development of a training plan that can be used to guide your training and budgetary decision making process.

To take advantage of this opportunity, team leaders should contact Response Technologies at (941) 371–7849

Florida SERC Approves Revised HazMat Team Assessment

During their meeting on July 11, 2008 The Florida State Emergency Response Commission approved the 2008 edition of the Florida Hazardous Materials Teams Assessment Methodology. The assessment is part of an ongoing system of providing periodic assessment of technician level response capabilities within Florida.

This edition of the assessment was fast tracked for completion in order to support the State Fire Marshall's Office need for a self-assessment tool for use with the 2008 SHSGP Grant for hazardous materials teams in Florida. The new assessment methodology will be available by the end of July once final editing and formatting is completed.

In addition to the assessment methodology, the SERC also approved two new model procedures and the SERC Hazardous Materials Technician Annual Training Competency Refresher Checklist.

Response Technologies has posted the documents on their download library.

Response Technologies Virtual Campus Online

An online campus is now available through Response Technologies in order to facilitate training for its customers. Virtual campus can host both instructor led and independent study programs for emergency services training.  Located at campus.responsetechnologies.com, it will support complete SCROM II compatibility and both synchronous and asynchronous  learning methodologies. In addition to standard courses, Response Technologies will also be providing tailored program development and hosting for their clients and customers.

For more information on this and other services provided by Response Technologies, contact Douglas Wolfe at 941-371-7849.


 

Florida SERC Training Task Force (TTF) Revising the Type III and II HazMat Team Assessment Methodologies

The Florida State Emergency Response Commission Hazardous Materials Training Task Force is currently revising the Type III and II Hazardous Materials Team Assessment Methodologies. The methodologies, used throughout Florida to assess the response capabilities of technician level teams, are being updated based upon changes to the standard of care and the expectations of the emergency services community.

The revised documents are expected to go before the Florida SERC for approval at their July 2008 meeting. Comment is currently being taken and copies of the drafts can be obtained from either your Florida LEPC staff contacts or by contacting Tim Date at the Florida Division of Emergency Management at (850) 410-1272.



Response Technologies at Fire Rescue East

Response Technologies will be attending the Fire-Rescue East 2008 conference in Jacksonville January 22 - 26, 2008. Held in the Prime Osborne Convention Center, we will be located at booth 113 immediately off the main entry foyer and we invite everyone to stop. RTC will be conducting a training needs analysis throughout the conference. It is our desire to gather data from managers, training officers, responders and manufacturers concerning the changing needs of training. This data will then be made available to its customers and strategic partners.

Additional information about Fire-Rescue East 2008 can be obtained from the Florida Fire Chiefs' Association.


 

Discussion Boards Added to Support Florida HazMat Responders

Several discussion boards have been added to support the Florida Association of Hazardous Materials Responders. These discussion boards, opened on Monday June 26, are accessible to all registered users of Response Technologies download library. Access request is limited to known of verified employees of recognized public safety and allied organizations including fire service, EMS, medical, law enforcement, public health and military. Access requests can be made at https://www.responsetechnologies.com/libraryrequest.htm . Please allow up to 48 hours for validation and approval for access.


Response Technologies develops a new curriculum for Hazardous Materials Analytical Technician

Response Technologies Corporation is developing a new certificated program in field analytical procedures. Due out in the winter of 2006 this curriculum is designed to take the HazMat Technician to a standardized level of competency for analyzing potential chemical, radiological and biological hazards in the field. This comprehensive certification program is (Click here to read more...)



(NFA) National Fire Academy Chemistry Computer Based Training Program
The National Fire Academy (NFA) has released their new Chemistry of Emergency Response (CER) Computer Based Refresher Training Program. The CD-ROM based program was developed as part of the revision process for the academy's gold standard chemistry program. The CD-ROM was developed by the program development contractor and Response Technologies Corporation. More information concerning the CD-ROM can be obtained by contacting the National Fire Academy publications division at NFA Publications.



Response Technologies Completes the Reassessment of Hazardous Materials Teams in Florida
The process of re-assessing hazardous materials response teams in Florida was completed in December 2006 and preliminary reports were provided to the Florida State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) and their meeting during the first week week of January.

This is the second time Response Technologies and its principles have been involved in the Florida assessment process. During the first process which, occurred in 1999 and 2000, Response Technologies played a key roll in the development of the assessment methodology and administered the process to 25 of the 35 teams now being assessed for a second time. The results of the first assessment played a pivotal role in helping the teams set their own strategic goals and road maps for improvement. In addition, the data was used extensively to aid in the development of a state-wide WMD response capabilities both before and immediately following the events of 9-11.

This year's assessments shows a marked strengthening of hazardous materials response teams throughout the state of Florida both in the areas of planning and equipment.

For more information concerning this assessment process, you can contact Douglas Wolfe at Response Technologies or the Florida Division of Emergency Management.