IAEM Dispatch
May. 22, 2014

Deadline for Rick Rescorla National Award for Resilience is July 17
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is seeking nominations for the 2014 Rick Rescorla National Award for Resilience that recognizes leadership in fostering resilience during 2013. This year, there will be two separate awards for organizations, one for "for-profit organizations" and one for "not-for-profit organizations." Following the 1993 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center, Rick Rescorla, vice president of security, regularly drilled his Morgan Stanley employees in disaster preparedness and response, especially evacuation. On 9/11, Rescorla led a massive evacuation of Morgan Stanley's 2,700-person workforce located in the South Tower. He lost his life on 9/11 as he returned to the South Tower in order to assist others. Candidates may be nominated for the Rick Rescorla National Award for Resilience until July 17, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. (EDT). All nominations must be submitted by email to rescorlaaward@hq.dhs.gov. For details, including the nomination form, please visit www.dhs.gov/rick-rescorla-national-award-resilience.More

Virginia Governor names Jeffrey Stern, CEM, as state coordinator of Virginia Dept. of Emergency Management
Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe recently announced additional appointments to his administration. Among those announcements was the appointment of Jeffrey Stern, CEM, an SDMI Senior Fellow, as the state coordinator of the Virginia Department of Emergency Management. Stern has more than 25 years of local and federal government experience as an emergency manager and first responder. He served in leadership roles as director of the Northern Virginia Emergency Response System and in the Arlington County Office of Emergency Management, and helped lead teams in response to Hurricanes Charley and Katrina and the Haitian earthquake. Stern earned the Certified Emergency Manager (CEM®) credential through IAEM's certification program.More

Experts: Wildfires growing increasingly dangerous and costly
The Missoulian
The buildup of forest fuels across Western states combined with modern suppression tactics and a warming climate have led to an explosion of wildfires that are growing to sizes — and costs — unheard of 30 years ago. Given climate models over the next 50 years, the problem will likely grow worse without a change in policy, Jerry Williams told an audience of 600 at the Large Wildland Fires Conference.More

Smelters across US at risk from tornadoes, floods, quakes
Environmental Health News
As tornado season ramps up and some natural disasters become more common across the United States, storms and floods can bring an ugly, largely forgotten past back to the surface. Just look at Joplin, Missouri. Despite a Superfund cleanup, the tornado had no trouble stirring up some of the 9 million tons of toxic wastes left behind from hundreds of lead mines and 17 smelters. More

MERS cure? Lots of drugs might fight virus
More than two dozen different drugs, from old-line chemotherapy drugs to malaria drugs, might work against the baffling new MERS virus, researchers said. They'll need to be tested in animals first and then in people after some early promise in the lab, but the discovery offers hope that there might be something available quickly to fight the virus if it does start spreading faster than it has so far, the researchers said.More

US mines personal health data to find the vulnerable in emergencies
The New York Times
The phone calls were part Big Brother, part benevolent parent. When a rare ice storm threatened New Orleans in January, some residents heard from a city official who had gained access to their private medical information. Kidney dialysis patients were advised to seek early treatment because clinics would be closing. Others who rely on breathing machines at home were told how to find help if the power went out. Those warnings resulted from vast volumes of government data. For the first time, federal officials scoured Medicare health insurance claims to identify potentially vulnerable people and share their names with local public health authorities for outreach during emergencies and disaster drills.More

4 major phone carriers providing text-to-911
The Washington Post
The four major U.S. wireless phone companies are providing emergency texting 911 service as of this month to any local government that wants it and has the capability to use it, a big step toward moving the nation's emergency dispatch system out of the voice-only technology that dates to the 1960s.More

Looking ahead to the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season
On Thursday, May 22, NOAA released their outlook for the 2014 Atlantic Hurricane Season. Eric Fisher's on outlooks are shared by a number of Meteorologists in the field — they have limited use. If you talk to someone in a "quiet" season that's just been hit by the only hurricane of the year, Fisher doubts they'd tell you it was "quiet." One is all it takes, and one destructive storm can change lives within hours. 1992 is the poster-season for this rationale. Only one hurricane made landfall — but it was catastrophic, Category 5, Hurricane Andrew.More

State-of-the-art emergency response vessel headed home
Your Houston News
A two-week voyage through four Great Lakes and the Mississippi River will bring to the Port of Houston Authority the third of three high-performance emergency response vessels. The new boats equip the Port Authority's firefighting team with what some describe as the most sophisticated fleet in the world.More

Reminder: 2014 IAEM Awards Competition Ends May 30, 2014
Time is running out! The 2014 IAEM Awards Competition ends on May 30, 2014, at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Please submit your entry, including all supporting material and entry forms (where applicable), to Karen Thompson. There will be no extensions to the entry deadline. There is still time to enter your outstanding project or nominate the person of your choice in one of our award categories. Everything that you will need to enter the IAEM Awards Competition is posted at www.iaem.com/Awards. Read about the various 2014 award categories, and take the time to review the posted entries of last year's winners. You may be inspired to enter your innovative project, which in turn may provide the perfect solution to a challenge facing some of your EM professional colleagues. Whether you are submitting an entry for the Public Awareness Award, Technology & Innovation Award, or Partners in Preparedness Award — or whether you are nominating someone for the IAEM-USA Clayton R. Christopher Award, Uniformed Services Awards or Student Awards — the IAEM Judges welcome your entries. Visit www.iaem.com/Awards today to learn how you can enter the 2014 IAEM Awards Competition. More

IAEM Bulletin call for articles on professional development in emergency management
The IAEM Editorial Work Group seeks articles for its fourth special focus issue of 2014, "Professional Development in Emergency Management." Possible articles might include: promoting individual growth within an emergency management department through incorporating higher education and other activities; how individual emergency managers are applying professional development activities in their departments to make their efforts more effective; or how your emergency management program has improved or how your community has benefited through the application of what you learned in professional development activities. Please read the IAEM Bulletin Author's Guidelines at www.iaem.com/Bulletin. Email article submissions to Thompson@iaem.com by July 10, 2014.More

'Vision Van' helps eye doctors respond after natural disasters
Reuters via Chicago Tribune
Eye doctors in Japan used a clinic-on-wheels to provide eye exams to earthquake survivors in 2011. Now, they have published a study showing what people in disaster areas needed most: glasses. The doctors were prepared to treat a large number of eye infections due to contaminated water in the aftermath of the earthquake and tsunami. But in fact, what people needed most were replacements for lost eyeglasses, contact lenses or eye drops.More

Google touts Google Maps' role in emergency preparedness
Google Maps is working with first responders and municipal officials around the world to help them be better prepared for natural disasters and other emergencies by using map visualizations to track problems and plan recovery scenarios. More

IAEM Middle East Resilience Conference will be Dec. 10-11 in Dubai
Dates of the IAEM Middle East Resilience Conference have been changed to Dec. 10-11, 2014, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. "The IAEM MERC 2014 was launched to fill a need to educate our safety, security and emergency managers and officers on how to best prepare for potential and unforeseen emergencies," stated H.E. Khaled Al Mansoori, IAEM International Council President. "Over the two-day conference, delegates will attend sessions facilitated by experts who have the knowledge and first-hand experience on handling emergency situations." Details are available on the conference website.More

Save the date for the IAEM-USA 62nd Annual Conference — Nov. 14-19
The IAEM-USA 62nd Annual Conference in San Antonio is the premiere emergency management event of the year. Registration is opening soon! Don't miss out on what others come back to year-after-year. We have numerous dynamic general and breakout session speakers planned and training courses offered. Check out the IAEM website for more information.More

Eyes on the Arctic: The US's pivot north
World Policy Institute
Let's face it. The Arctic is not part of America’s collective imagination. Yes, we recognize that the state of Alaska legitimizes our claim as an Arctic nation, but it's so terribly far away. Maps of the United States sometimes depict Alaska plopped centered atop the lower 48, looking a bit like a headless creature with one leg circling toward Russia via the Aleutian Islands. Alaska is more than twice the size of Texas, and a flight from Juneau to Barrow is 1,100 flight miles as the crow flies. For that flight you'd have to pass through Canadian air space.More

IAEM member Gary McKay, CEM, was part of a team that ensured the safety of all when MERS cases arrived at his hospital's ER
Two confirmed U.S. cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) were found at Community Hospital, Munster, Indiana, on Apr. 28, as reported in The Washington Post. The hospital was cited for its readiness to respond to this medical crisis and prevent the spread of the disease. IAEM member Gary McKay, CEM, as manager of Emergency Preparedness, Security and Safety for Community Hospital, was part of the team that prepared Community Hospital to act quickly in response to the MERS threat.More

Revised version of CEM®/AEM℠ application now available
A new CEM®/AEM℠ Application has been uploaded onto the IAEM website, and all candidates should note the following changes in the requirements:

Candidates should note that starting July 1, 2014, applications must meet the new requirements outlined above. The North American Application Review Commission is meeting Sept. 11-14, 2014. All applications must be received at IAEM HQ by Aug. 15, 2014, to be included in this review. More

IAEM is offering CEM®/AEM℠ Prep Courses and exams
Register today for one of the upcoming CEM®/AEM℠ Prep Courses or Exam offerings that are convenient to you.

Register through the IAEM website to secure your space. IAEM requires a minimum of 10 registrants for the prep course. If you have any questions, feel free to contact CEM administrator Kate McClimans.More

Northern Arizona wildfires: More crews on the way, 1,000 acres burned by Slide fire
The Weather Channel
As a wind-whipped wildfire continued to rage in northern Arizona, burning more than 1,000 acres of land in a canyon between Flagstaff and Sedona, dozens of additional firefighters were called in to help control the blaze. Resorts and campgrounds have been evacuated due to the wildfire near Slide Rock State Park in northern Arizona's Oak Creek Canyon. With about 200 firefighters and five Hotshot crews already fighting the fire, an additional 15 Hotshot crews, 10 more firefighting crews and dozens more fire trucks are on order to help.More

Wildfires grow in Southcentral, stretching firefighters thin
Anchorage Daily News
A wildfire that threatened the village of Tyonek on the northwest side of Cook Inlet has triggered more than 100 evacuations while an explosive wind-driven blaze near Soldotna more than doubled in size Tuesday to 7,000 acres in dry, windy conditions. The Kenai Peninsula fire was not threatening any homes or structures, and no evacuations were in place as of mid-afternoon Tuesday. More

Turkey says mine disaster won't go unpunished
The Washington Post
Turkey's prime minister pledged Tuesday not to allow anyone responsible for the country's worst mine disaster to go unpunished, and promised improved supervision of Turkish mines. Recep Tayyip Erdogan spoke a day after a court ordered the arrests of three more people as part of probe into the coal mine fire in the western town of Soma, which killed 301 people. The arrests raised the number of suspects facing charges of negligent death to eight.More

Extreme heat, floods strike Eastern Europe
Weather Underground
Recently, the worst flooding in a century has occurred in Bosnia and Serbia this past week. At the same time, a record May heat wave has affected Estonia, Finland, Belarus, and northwestern Russia. Here are some details.More

Ban expresses concern for flood-hit Balkans as UN scales up disaster response
UN News Centre
As the United Nations and its humanitarian partners ramp up disaster response in the Balkans, where heavy rains have led to massive floods and devastating mudslides, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has expressed concern for affected populations in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia desperate for fresh water, medicines and other basic necessities.More