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Teton Interagency Fire Reduces Mobile Command Costs with TACPAK
Initial lack of remote communications required frequent truck trips to deliver messages; deployment of TACPAK Briefcase Mobile Command Center enables data and messaging onsite
In today’s grim budget environment, every fire dollar counts. When the Red Rock and Gray Hills fires combined to ravage 12,000 acres in the remote Gros Ventre Wilderness, Teton Interagency Fire responded. Due to the remote Fire Complex location, data and voice communication was limited to costly and inefficient hand delivered messages and radio connections made by sending trucks many miles down valley. “We seek to correct this today, if possible, as the gravel road into the remote site we're located at is difficult and at times un-safe, so this Internet access will mitigate some of our safety/travel concerns”, said Ron Steffens, Deputy Incident Commander. In response, the Wyoming Department of Homeland Security deployed their TACPAK Briefcase Command Center, manufactured by 308 Systems, at the fire site. The beauty of these ultra-agile TAC-PAK Mobile Command systems is that they were easily thrown in the back of a fire pickup and quickly deployed to the Fire Complex. Immediately, the command staff had access to satellite based data messaging, telephone connections, and interoperable radio from the remote fire site. This single piece of equipment was credited with saving firefighting funds and improving the efficiency of the successful wildfire response.
Responding to this type of fire is a costly and labor intensive task for any agency. By combining these two fires under a “Fire Complex” structure, a single team could manage both fires from the fire camp. However, the fires presented significant challenges due to the remote location and lack of robust regional communications infrastructure.
Due to the fluid nature of the fire operations, the TAC-PAK significantly improved the TIF quick reaction command and communications capabilities during this widespread incident. The satellite based TAC-PAK mobile command and communication system successfully provided cost effective and vital operational and welfare/moral communications traffic between the Fire Complex and associated locations.
For more information see www.308systems.com
- Corporate News/9-1-1magazine.com (via 308 Systems, 12/8/11)