National Traffic Incident Response Awareness Week

November 10-16, 2019 is National Traffic Incident Response Awareness Week.

Every minute of every day emergency responders across the country work to help save lives at the scene of traffic incidents.  Too many are struck on scene. Too many die. The goal of National Traffic Incident Response Awareness Week is, for the fourth year, to reach out to every responder, and to every driver, and to every passenger, to make it clear that every person has a role to play.

First Responders here in Virginia will always remember the ultimate sacrifice by Lieutenant Bradford Turner Clark of Hanover Fire/EMS.  Lt. Clark was struck and killed by a tractor-trailer while he was outside of his fire truck responding to a crash on I-295. He was honored at the 2019 Virginia Fallen Firefighter & EMS Memorial Service on June 1, 2019 and has been recognized by a number of organizations in Virginia for his sacrifice.

Drivers are urged to move over when they see flashing blue, red or amber lights on Virginia’s highways. Please give first responders and law enforcement officers room to do their jobs; move over and slow down. Remember, it’s the law.

Virginia law states that when approaching a stationary vehicle that is displaying flashing blue, red or amber lights, drivers shall:

  • Proceed with caution and, if reasonable, yield the right of way by making a lane change into a lane not adjacent to the stationary vehicle or:
  • If changing lanes would be unreasonable or unsafe, proceed with due caution and maintain a safe speed for highway conditions.

Additional resources are available at:

If your agency has not done so, we encourage you to participate in The FHWA -SHRP2 National Traffic Incident Management Responder Training Program. The following video contains information about the program and contact information to have the training delivered to your agency is available at the VASTIM website listed above or you may contact Briant Atkins, VDFP Chief Safety Officer at 804-249-2173 or briant.atkins@vdfp.virginia.gov.

 

Register for National Incident Management Responder Training

Click here to find a course near you.

3RD SENIOR EXECUTIVE TRANSPORTATION AND PUBLIC SAFETY SUMMIT will be Nov 14 and 15 with a ceremony commemorating National Traffic Incident Response Awareness Week with a Proclamation signing by The USDOT Secretary of Transportation.

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is committed to a safe and efficient highway system. To that end, the FHWA Office of Operations, Traffic Incident Management (TIM) Program targets efforts to improve responder and motorist safety, while also advancing incident mitigation tools, techniques, and processes. To move the National TIM Program forward.

Virginia Department of Fire Programs Receives $286,000 from Federal Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program

Virginia Department of Fire Programs Receives $286,000 from Federal Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program

Funding will support Virginia’s specialty firefighting training programs and integrate devices to monitor conditions during live fire exercises

RICHMONDOctober 8, 2019 – The Virginia Department of Fire Programs (VDFP) has been awarded $286,000 in federal grant funding through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s 2018 Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program. The funding will be used to replace obsolete equipment for the state’s Heavy Technical Rescue training programs, tow vehicles, and thermal imaging cameras and equipment to monitor dangerous conditions during live fire training exercises.

The state’s Heavy Technical Rescue program will undergo an overhaul of equipment replacements that will be used for specialized training courses that include rope, trench, vehicle, confined space, and surface/swift water rescue training. The funding will also provide Fire Programs with two tow vehicles that will aid in hauling the agency’s existing mobile training support trailers to various training localities throughout Virginia.

“We are ecstatic to begin using thermal imaging cameras and specialized monitoring equipment for our live fire trainings,” said VDFP Executive Director Michael Reilly. “This will enable our instructors to test and observe temperatures and atmospheric conditions in a realistic environment, which will deepen our firefighter training information with evidence-based data in addition to field experience.”

This marks the fourth year in a row that VDFP has obtained federal funding for the Commonwealth’s firefighter training programs. Since 2016, VDFP has been awarded a total of approximately $1.2 million dollars.

The agency will provide $42,900 in matching funds and has 12 months to complete the purchases under the grant.

October 6-12 is Fire Prevention Week

October 6-12 is Fire Prevention Week

VDFP to provide resources to plan ahead in case of a fire in the home

RICHMOND – October 3, 2019 – Does your household know what to do when the smoke alarm sounds?  Many people don’t.  According to the Department of Homeland Security, only 71% of Americans have a home escape plan and only 47% of Americans have practiced their plan.

October 6-12 is Fire Prevention Week and this year’s theme is “Not every hero wears a cape, plan and practice your escape.” The Virginia Department of Fire Programs (VDFP) is providing a fire escape plan checklist and resources from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) to remind Virginians to develop and practice plans in case a fire in the home occurs.

“When every second counts, having a planned and practiced home escape plan is an important factor in your and your family’s safety,” says VDFP Executive Director Michael Reilly, who has 40 years of firefighting and fire safety expertise.

Virginia had 61 civilian fire deaths and 404 civilian fire injuries in 2018. NFPA data shows that a home fire occurs every 88 seconds and that, on average, seven people died in a home fire per day during 2012 to 2016. Today’s homes burn faster than ever, with synthetic materials being a key factor. You may only have one to two minutes to escape after your smoke alarm sounds.

A home escape plan should include:

  • A map of your home with all doors and windows
  • Two ways out of every room
  • Smoke alarms marked
  • Meeting place marked

You should also make sure that your escape plan accounts for household members who may need assistance exiting such as disabled individuals, very young children, or older adults. Once you have created your plan make sure to practice the plan at least twice a year.

Visit the Fire Prevention Week page to learn more about how you can keep yourself and your family safe.

2019 Governor’s Fire Service Awards Nominations Now Open

2019 Governor’s Fire Service Awards Nominations Now Open

October 1, 2019

The Virginia Department of Fire Programs, a leader in enhancing public safety, in conjunction with the Virginia Fire Services Board, are seeking nominations for the 2019 Governor’s Fire Service Awards, which honors and recognizes excellence in Fire Services in the Commonwealth.

The annual Governor’s Fire Service Awards is presented in eight categories during the Virginia Fire Chiefs Association Expo and Symposium held in February at the Virginia Beach Convention Center.

Nominations can be submitted through an online form on the VDFP website through December 13, 2019.

About the Governor’s Fire Service Awards
The Governor’s Fire Service Awards were established in 2002. In partnership with the Virginia Fire Services Board, the VDFP facilitates the awards. The Virginia Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security presents the Governor with award recommendations, at which the final recipients are then selected. Award categories:

  • Governor’s Award for Excellence in Virginia Fire Service
  • Governor’s Award for Excellence in Virginia Community Risk Reduction
  • Governor’s Award for Excellence in Virginia’s Fire Service Training
  • Governor’s Award for Outstanding Fire Department Response
  • Governor’s Award for Private Sector Excellence in Virginia Fire Service Support
  • Governor’s Civilian Excellence in Virginia Fire Service Support
  • Governor’s Virginia Firefighter of the Year
  • Governor’s Virginia Fire Chief of the Year

Among the 2018 recipients were Hanover County Fire-EMS Department and the Central Virginia Firefighters Association, who were recognized for Excellence in Virginia Fire Services and Outstanding Fire Department Response, respectively. Read more about the 2018 Governor’s Fire Service awards recipients

About the Virginia Department of Fire Programs
The Virginia Department of Fire Programs provides training, support services, and resources to more than 700 fire and emergency service organizations, and approximately 44,000 fire service personnel in the Commonwealth. Support areas include funding, professional development, research, operational support, technical assistance, and fire prevention inspections through its State Fire Marshal Office.

Class cancellation due to effects of Hurricane Dorian

VDFP Class Cancellation – Instructor I / Ivor

September 5, 2019

Due to the impending threat of severe weather from Hurricane Dorian and the potential for flooding for the Hampton Roads area, the VDFP Instructor I class for tonight (September 5) in Ivor is cancelled:

VDFP Instructor I
Ivor Volunteer Fire Department
8295 Main Street
Ivor, VA 23866

Class will resume on Sunday, September 8 as listed in the class schedule. Further adjustments will occur as needed. The class instructor will provide information about makeups directly with students.

Contact VDFP Division 5 with any additional questions.

September 11 is First Responders Day in Virginia

September 11 is First Responders Day in Virginia

Virginia public safety agencies are encouraged to recognize and promote the official day

RICHMOND – August 27, 2019Virginia House Joint Resolution 646 officially designates Wednesday, September 11, 2019 and every following year on September 11 as First Responder Day in Virginia.

Public safety agencies, associations, and organizations that work with first responders are encouraged to observe the day of remembrance with community activities, events, and promotion of First Responder Day in Virginia with stakeholders for awareness.

House Joint Resolution 646

HJ 646 was introduced during the 2019 Session of the Virginia General Assembly by Delegate Michael P. Mullin (D-Newport News), and establishes September 11 as the day to remember and recognize first responders in Virginia, according to the resolution, “…for their courage and dedication to protect and aid the public during emergencies as both professional and volunteer first responders.”

In the resolution, first responders are listed as 911 dispatchers, law-enforcement officers, professional and volunteer firefighters, professional and volunteer emergency medical services personnel, emergency management professionals, search and rescue teams, rescue pilots and divers, the Virginia National Guard, and members of other organizations in the public safety sector.

Recommended Recognition Activities and Events

  • Promote on social media using the hashtag #VAFirstResponderDay
  • Hold fundraisers for first responders in your community
  • Observe a moment of silence for the victims and first responders who perished in September 11, 2001 at the Pentagon and New York City.
  • Organize community 5K and 10K walks or runs
  • Share with local organizations and Chambers of Commerce
  • Say “thank you” to first responders with cards and letters

About the VDFP

The Virginia Department of Fire Programs provides training, support services, and resources to more than 700 fire and emergency service organizations, and approximately 44,000 fire service personnel in the Commonwealth. Support areas include funding, professional development, research, operational support, technical assistance, and fire prevention inspections through its State Fire Marshal Office.

Contact

Vanessa Copeland
VDFP Public Information Officer
(804) 249-1986
vanessa.copeland@vdfp.virginia.gov