Disaster Preparedness | Emergency Response

Featured Videos

Dubhe Beinhorn describes AtHoc, Inc, winner of GSN’s 2012 award for “Best Mass Notification Solutions,” as a company that operates in one sector only: critical communications for crisis management....

News

Tue, 2014-12-09 06:05 PM
Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell has announced a declaration under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act to facilitate the development and availability...
Thu, 2014-12-04 06:16 PM
Attorney General Eric Holder announced today that a Justice Department (DOJ) civil rights investigation into the use of force by the Cleveland Division of Police has found a pattern or practice of...
Wed, 2014-12-03 04:27 PM
The House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed three bills Monday aimed at strengthening nuclear security and detection, protecting critical infrastructure against the threat of electromagnetic...
Wed, 2014-12-03 01:32 PM
An increasing number of U.S. hospitals are now equipped to treat patients with Ebola, giving nationwide health system Ebola readiness efforts a boost. According to the Centers for Disease Control and...
Wed, 2014-12-03 12:01 AM
The Federal Highway Administration recently approved a preferred construction alternative for CSX's Virginia Avenue Tunnel project, enabling CSX to complete the tunnel's design and initiate the...
Sun, 2014-11-30 07:58 PM
Dear GSN Readers: Government Security News has posted its October/November Digital Edition online. We will also be mailing out the new publication to our readers Monday morning. This edition has a...
Thu, 2014-11-27 02:26 AM
Happy Thanksgiving from Government Security News! In observance of the holiday, the Daily Insider e-newsletter will resume publication on Monday, December 1. Enjoy the holiday and safe...
Tue, 2014-11-25 11:38 PM

Denise Rucker Krepp

Recently, a GSN reader emailed me about the Transportation Security Administration's hazardous material tracking program. The agency is required by a 2007 law to track sensitive security materials...
Tue, 2014-11-25 11:11 PM
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have added Mali to the list of Ebola-affected nations for which enhanced screening and...
Mon, 2014-11-24 06:15 PM
According to statistics collected by the FBI, 76 law enforcement officers were killed in line-of-duty incidents in 2013. Of these, 27 officers died as a result of felonious acts, and 49 officers died...
Thu, 2014-11-20 04:20 PM
As in previous years, the Government Security News Homeland Security Awards was divided into three broad categories of entries: Best Vendors of IT Security Products and Solutions; Best...
Thu, 2014-11-20 02:54 PM
On Wednesday, Secret Service Acting Director Joseph P. Clancy testified before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary on a variety of issues and addressed ongoing efforts to...

Company News

Working in conjunction with StopDUID.org, NMS Labs has released an updated compilation of the laws in all 50 states dealing with alcohol impaired driving and driving under the influence of drugs (DUID). Dr. Barry Logan, vice president of Forensic Science Initiatives at NMS Labs, introduced the report saying, “There is a huge increase in awareness among lawmakers and the driving public about the influence of drugs on driving and the consequences of mixing drugs with alcohol.
More Americans fall victim to accident, theft, and violent crime during the holidays than any other time of year. New York-based Securify (available on iOS and Android) is the app that addresses this problem and brings safety, security and emergency response into the twenty-first century. Consumers can now alert authorities in a matter of seconds and while keeping them and their families safe and secure at home and around the world -- a great app for travelling safely.
Boston, MA-based SPR Advanced Technologies (SPR) has announced that it has been awarded a grant by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to test, refine and deploy its patented technology to assist USAID and its partner agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and the United States Department of Defense, with an Ebola response solution to protect health care workers in affected countries from contamination by the Ebola virus.
Plans to purchase millions of doses of an Ebola vaccine to support large-scale vaccination efforts have been agreed upon by the board of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. The decision means that Gavi will be ready to act as soon as a safe, effective vaccine is recommended for use by the World Health Organization.
Appleton, WI-based Pierce Manufacturing, an Oshkosh Corporation company, recently placed four Pierce Impel pumpers on duty with the Scottsdale Fire Department (SFD) in Scottsdale, AZ. In addition, SFD has purchased two more Impel pumpers that will be delivered in April 2015. All six utilize the Pierce Ultimate Configuration (PUC) pump system. In total, SFD now has 23 Pierce apparatus in service or on order for delivery.
Oshkosh Airport Products, LLC, an Oshkosh Corporation company, has placed six new generation Oshkosh Striker aircraft rescue and firefighting vehicles into service at Manchester Airport in the U.K. All six identically equipped vehicles feature the innovative Snozzle high-reach extendable turret (HRET). The Striker fleet was introduced to a group of over 100 guests and dignitaries at a launch ceremony held at the airport.
Wallingford, CT-based Mutualink continues to expand its network of connected communities with a pilot program of Mutualink K12 at 20 schools in New York’s Oneida and Rockland counties. This follows the successful roll-out of the Mutualink system in Dartmouth, MA earlier this year. By joining the Interoperable Response and Preparedness Platform network, these schools now have a direct link to police and other entities on the network as and when needed.
The Fujisawa SST Council, a consortium led by Panasonic Corporation spearheading the development of the Fujisawa Sustainable Smart Town (Fujisawa SST), has held a grand opening ceremony for the forward-looking town located on the outskirts of Tokyo. With its core facility supporting sustainable development of the town and its community now coming into operation, the Fujisawa SST is moving from the construction stage into a new stage where the town is nurtured to grow in full-scale into an eco and smart town that puts a high priority on the residents’ lifestyles.

Commentary and Opinions

The security industry has a long history of protecting and saving lives, as well as a list of heroic achievements. Now, one more can be added to the list.
When an earthquake and tsunami damaged the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in March 2011, Japanese nuclear safety experts were quick to call for potassium iodide to be rushed to people in affected areas. Potassium iodide, or KI, lowers the risk of people developing thyroid cancer as a result of radioactive iodine exposure.
The disastrous results of the Boston Marathon bombings are testimony to the ineffectiveness of current security systems to predict and help avert devastating attacks. Although Boston’s security infrastructure was quite effective at post-disaster forensics, enabling the identification and neutralization of two suspects only days after the bombings, the community still had to suffer hundreds of injuries, loss of lives and hundreds of millions of dollars in collateral damage. 
The Boston Marathon incident is an unfortunate, tragic reminder that, as citizens, we must always remain aware, alert and diligent! Individuals must hone a “sixth sense” that helps them detect, anticipate and plan for danger in advance of it happening. People innately know when something is wrong, dangerous, or just “off,” and in those situations it is imperative to take action rather than just brushing it off. 
The cost of healthcare in the U.S. continues to soar year after year. The problem is not a result of idleness or the lack of technology, but of not addressing the core problem of patient identity.
 

Digital Version of November/December 2014 Print Edition

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Recent Disaster Preparedness Videos

Stephen Meer, one of the founders of Intrado, Inc of Denver, Colorado, indicates that his company provides services and products to the 9-1-1 infrastructure, which he says is a very complicated ecosystem with lots of different constituent groups. The 9-1-1 infrastructure is like an iceberg, he says, with a little piece that delivers services to the public that is above the water line, and a massive infrastructure under the water line that supports it in operating seamlessly, continuously, dealing with all the regulations and issues in the world of public safety communications.

Mike Bostic of Raytheon points out that he spent 34 years as an Assistant Chief in the LAPD, where he worked about a third of that time in technology  and communications. And one thing he learned from his LAPD experience is that everything the military needs, so does public safety. But Raytheon is in the business of solving operational problems rather than selling boxes and devices, he says, and as a systems integrator the company sells solutions to specific sets of problems.

Kevin Madden discusses the nation’s first demonstrated multi-vendor interoperable Public Safety Long Term Evolution (LTE) network, which was deployed by a consortium of companies including Cisco and Raytheon during the 2012 Republican National Convention in Tampa, FL.

Spillman Technologies is a vendor of public safety software used by law enforcement, fire and emergency management agencies, according to Dave Snyder. The company provides an integrated solution and specializes in multi-jurisdictional assignments involving agencies that want to collaborate with other agencies with information systems in large geographic areas. Snyder points out that the company has been in business for almost 30 years and has an extraordinary degree of stability, and its customers can count on major upgrades each year at no cost.

ESRI is the innovator of GIS, or Geographic Information Systems, which Paul Christin describes as a way of managing information and understanding it geographically, or plotting information, visualizing the data, and analyzing the dots to make sense out of the data. The company sells to 40 verticals, one of which is homeland security. Christin describes how GIS technology is used for planning major events, such as political conventions or the recent NATO conference in Chicago.

New Products

Add Jerusalem-based Identa Corp. to the handful of companies that issued statements in the wake of the failed...

Legalzoom.com, an online legal service, and Donate Life America (DLA), a non-profit organization, have created and are offering ICE App, intended to help users input the compreh...

Cambridge, MA-based MetaCarta, Inc., a provider of geographic search solutions, has announced the launch...

Waukesha, WI-based Magnasphere reports that its new high-security sensor, HSS, has completed its UL inspections and is r...