The L.A. City Fire Department’s westside Community Emergency Response Team volunteers invite fellow CERT members and interested members of the public to a free presentation featuring a Search Team Manager of the County of Los Angeles Fire Department’s Urban Search and Rescue Task Force (U.S. Task Force 2), Battalion Chief Larry Collins, discussing “Haiti Earthquake: Lessons Learned During Search & Rescue of Deeply Entombed Survivors”, with a discussion of implications for Southern California when disastrous earthquakes strike. Chief Collins will also discuss the confirmation of many lessons learned in the recent statewide Shakeout Earthquake Exercises, the next of which is scheduled for October 22, 2010.
The 72-member USA-2 USAR Task Force (including rescue firefighters, 6 Canine Search Teams, 2 Structure Engineers, and 2 Emergency Room Physicians) was deployed to Haiti immediately after the quake by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and participated in the rescue of nine victims trapped in rubble in the ruins of the capitol, Port au Prince (150 deeply entombed survivors were rescued by the combined international USAR task forces in Haiti). Members of USA-2 (also known as California Task Force 2 for domestic response under the auspices of FEMA, where they often join their counterparts from the LAFD’s USAR Task Force, known as California Task Force 1, and other FEMA USAR task forces) have been deployed to Hurricane Iniki, the Northridge earthquake, the Oklahoma City bombing, the 9/11 attacks at the Pentagon and World Trade Center, Hurricanes Frances, Charlie, Ivan, Dennis, Katrina, Rita, Wilma, Dolly, Gustav, Ike, and Ophelia, the Sumatra tsunami catastrophe, and earthquakes in Iran, China, Pakistan, and Haiti.
Chief Collins is a 30-year member of the County of Los Angeles Fire Department (LACoFD). For nearly 20 years he was a captain on USAR Task Force 103, an L.A. County FD specialized rescue unit, and since 1992 was assigned as a search team manager for LACoFD’s FEMA/OFDA US&R task force for domestic and international response. He has served on FEMA US&R Incident Support Teams since 1995.
The presentation will take place from 7:00 to 9:00 pm on Tuesday, March 23, 2009, at Fire Station 5, 8900 S. Emerson @ Westchester Parkway in Westchester, in the training room behind the main station on the southeast corner of the property. Admission is free. Due to space limitations, if you would like to attend, please rsvp to firstname.lastname@example.org .