Colorado Pipeline Association - Pipeline Safety Presentation by Xcel Energy - April 6 - Pueblo, CO

On April 6 at 5:30 p.m. the Colorado Pipeline Association (CoPA) will host a meeting in Pueblo on pipeline safety.  Xcel Energy will be the presenter.  Pat Chappell and/or Kevin Johnson from our Pueblo gas operations will also attend.  The meeting is going to be at the Pueblo Community College, CC219A - Fortino Ballroom.  I encourage you to attend and please register for the Pueblo meeting at the following site.  Any emergency responder who expeccts to attend needs to RSVP on-line by going to: or they can call 877-477-1162  (NOTE:  registrants may be asked for a web code (on-line or by phone) -- just say "don't have one" and sign up for Pueblo). If you have questions please contact Karen Riggenbach Vaughn at P: 303.571.3939  C: 303.887.1842 E:

National Weather Service Boulder - Skywarn Severe Weather Spotter Trainings

The National Weather Service in Boulder conducts 25 to 30 spotter training sessions each year mostly during March, April, and May.

These talks are free and open to the public. At each session, the NWS offers basic training followed by advanced training.  By taking the training, you can become a certified Skywarn severe weather spotter after 90 minutes of basic training or stay for the advanced portion of the training.  The National Weather Service will count on you to be their "eyes" out in the field, when trying to verify severe weather across northeast Colorado.   The National Weather Service in Boulder warns for 22 counties and these spotter reports are very helpful in making warning decisions on severe thunderstorms.

The NWS requests that you register with the contact point for the talk you plan to attend.  For more information on Skywarn training, contact

Visit the NWS Boulder Spot Training Page for a schedule of upcoming Basic and Advanced Skywarn Severe Weather Spotter Trainings.

Franktown Fire Info Source(s)

There is a developing fire near Franktown, Colorado, called the "Burning Tree Fire".  Updates are now being posted online to the  Douglas County Sheriff's Office site.  For the latest, follow (@dcsheriff) or check the Douglas County Sheriff's Office Facebook Page.  Information is also being provided by South Metro Fire Rescue via Twitter @pio65 -  Information on Twitter regarding fire developments using #FranktownFire.  To follow these developments, go to and search for #franktownfire.  Douglas County Sheriff's Office has also set up a Public Info Line for the fire at (303) 660-7520 ext. 1.

Douglas County's citizen alert system registration page is located at

For shelter information, follow

American Red Cross Mile High Chapter Town Hall Meeting - Strategy and Moving Forward - Mar 26 - Denver, CO

The American Red Cross Mile High Chapter is hosting a Town Hall Meeting to discuss Red Cross strategy and action plans moving forward on Saturday, March 26, from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm at the American Red Cross Mile High Chapter (444 Sherman Street, Denver, CO 80203).  The Town Hall Meeting is open to all preparedness volunteers - past, present and future - and is being held because of the recent influx of volunteers, with so many things going on, the Red Cross feels "it's time to get everyone in the same room and share the big picture."  At the meeting, attendees will learn about jobs available for Red Cross preparedness volunteers, what kind of training is required and how volunteers can be more involved.  An RSVP is required since space will be limited in the Red Cross auditorium and for RSVPs and more information, contact George Sullivan, Preparedness Program Coordinator, American Red Cross Mile High Chapter at (303) 607-4758 or via email at  For general information about the Colorado Chapters of the American Red Cross, follow them on Twitter at @redcrossdenver and @redcrossgs, follow the Colorado Chapters of the American Red Cross on Facebook or visit their website at

Indian Gulch Fire - near Golden, CO

Updates regarding the Indian Gulch Fire near Golden, Colorado, are being posted to the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office Emergency Update page at  Jefferson County officials are also posting information on Twitter using @JeffcoColorado (  The City of Golden (@CityofGolden) is also posting fire updates to  In addition, the Colorado State Forest Service is posting updates on the Indian Gulch Fire on their site at  With the arrival of the Type I Incident Management Team, the Indian Gulch Fire has been added to Inciweb at For fire info/discussion from media, public and local elected officials via Twitter using the hashtag #goldenfire.  To follow this discussion thread, go to and search for: #goldenfire

On March 21, the Federal Emergency Management Agency Region VIII approved a Fire Management Assistance Grant for the Indian Gulch Fire.  For more information on the FMAG Program, check out the FEMA's FMAG Factsheet.

NOTE:  In Colorado, FMAG requests and fire suppression support is administered by the Colorado State Forest Service.
For the latest regarding weather conditions, the National Weather Service has established an Indian Gulch Fire Briefing page.  In addition, for the latest conditions across Colorado, be sure to check the National Weather Service - Colorado Weather Page. For information regarding current fire ban status across Colorado, check

Colorado Conference on Volunteerism - 5/24-25 - Denver, CO

Hosted by the Denver Directors of Volunteers in Agencies and Johnson & Wales University, the Colorado Conference on Volunteerism is being held in Denver on May 24-25, 2011.  Registration is now open at  Conference topics include:
  • Keynote address and interactive discussions by Paul Loeb
  • Engaging skilled and pro-bono volunteers
  • Best practices for online recruiting
  • Social media as a volunteer engagement strategy
  • Working with grieving volunteers
  • Understanding coporate volunteer partnerships
  • Appreciating generational differences in volunteers
  • Engaging service learning and intern volunteers
  • and more...
For more information, check out the Colorado Conference on Volunteerism website.

Course Announcement - Healthcare Partners Emergency Preparedness and Communications Workshops

The University of Colorado Denver Center for Integrated Disaster Health Preparedness is running a statewide series of daylong workshops for community health partners to build emergency preparedness within individual facilities and throughout the region.  Each workshop will be designed to adapt to the varied levels of preparedness and coordination among participants.  The intent of each workshop will be to challenge participants and aid in enhancing the level of coordination and preparedness in the surrounding region.  More information regarding the series, registration and benefits can be found at

Course Announcement - ICS-400 - Apr 7-8 - Pueblo, CO

Pueblo County Sheriff's Office is hosting an ICS-400 course from April 7-8, 2011.  This two day course utilizes the new FEMA ICS-400 curriculum and meets equivalency requirements established by the NIMS Integration Center for NIMS compliance.  Registration is being hosted on COTrain ( Course ID: 1006001.  Contact Karen Ashcraft at (719) 583-6202 if you have any questions.

2011 Colorado Wildland Fire & Incident Management Academy - June 6-12 - Frisco, CO

The flyer for this year's Colorado Wildland Fire and Incident Management Academy (CWFIMA) is now available on the CWFIMA site at

Like every iteration prior, the course schedule is packed with a variety of National Wildfire Coordination Group, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and other courses.  This year's course will be held in Frisco, Colorado, at Summit Middle School. 

For more information on the academy and the Summer schedule, visit the CWFIMA site or contact CWFIMA staff at (719) 589-1400 or at

2011 Volunteer Capacity Building Workshop - June 3 - Breckenridge, CO

This workshop is a day-long series of informative sessions for all types of volunteers with a role in disasters - Medical Reserve Corps (MRC), Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT), Red Cross volunteers, and also Fire Corps, and Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) participants, and others.

Advance registration will open April 15 on the COTrain site (  There is no cost to attend the workshop.  The workshop is being sponsored by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Citizen Corps Program and Denver Health Paramedics.

See the 2011 Volunteer Capacity Building Workshop "Save the Date" Flyer

Course Announcement - Military Resources in Emergency Management (IS-75)

The purpose of the IS-75 Military Resources in Emergency Management course is to provide participants with an overview of U.S. military resources potentially available to assist civilian authorities, and procedures for obtaining and integrating military resources into disaster response and recovery operations.  The course is an independent study, online course (found at and takes approximately 2 hours to complete.  The course is intended for a civilian audience desiring an awareness level of knowledge about the use of military resources in emergency management.  For further course information, contact EMI Course Manager Stephen Borth at (301) 447-1249 , 1 (800) 238-3358 (ext. 1249) or email

Lefthand Canyon Fire and Longmont Dam Road Fire Information - Boulder, CO

Information for both the Lefthand Canyon Fire (aka Lefthand Shooting Area Fire per inciweb) and Longmont Dam Road Fire (aka Spill Way Fire) is being posted online on Boulder Office of Emergency Management's site at  Fire information for the Lefthand Canyon Fire is also being posted on the by the U.S. Forest Service on Inciweb at

The USFS has set up a fire info line for the Lefthand Canyon Fire (per inciweb site) at 303-541-2500.  There is also an  information line set up for those affected by the fire and the public at by Boulder OEM.  That number is 303-413-7730

Colorado Earthquake Information

Geologic studies indicate there are about 100 potentially active faults Colorado and more than 400 earthquake tremors of magnitude 2.5 or higher have occurred in Colorado since 1870.

Movement on active faults is responsible for large earthquakes. Colorado experienced a magnitude 6.5 earthquake on November 7, 1882. The location of this earthquake appears to be in the northern Front Range west of Fort Collins.  Damages included the power plant in Denver and cracked buildings in Boulder.

For comparison, the magnitude 6.9 1989 San Francisco, California earthquake resulted in the deaths of 62 people, 3000 injured and $7 billion in property damage.

The US Geological Survey has undertaking more intensive study of earthquake activity in the Trinidad area. Within an approximate two-week period of time, eleven quakes measuring greater than 3.0 on the Richter Scale, the largest being measured at 4.5, occurred in an area about ten miles southwest of Trinidad in the fall of 2001. Additionally, dozens of smaller magnitude quakes have also been detected.

Because the occurrence of earthquakes is relatively infrequent in Colorado and the historical earthquake record is short (only about 130 years), it is not possible to accurately estimate the timing or location of future dangerous earthquakes in Colorado.

Seismologists predict that Colorado will again experience a magnitude 6.5 earthquake at some unknown point in the future.

Sudden movement on faults is responsible for large earthquakes. By studying the geologic characteristics of faults, geoscientists can often determine when the fault last moved and estimate the magnitude of the earthquake that produced the last movement.

The Sangre de Cristo Fault, which lies at the base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains along the eastern edge of the San Luis Valley, and the Sawatch Fault, which runs along the eastern margin of the Sawatch Range, are two of the most prominent potentially active faults in Colorado.

Not all of Colorado’s potentially active faults are in the mountains and some can not be seen at the earth’s surface. For example, the Cheraw Fault, which is in the Great Plains in southeast Colorado, appears to have had movement during the recent geologic past.

Relative to other western states, Colorado’s earthquake hazard is higher than Kansas or Oklahoma, but lower than Utah, and certainly much lower than Nevada and California.

Colorado earthquake information from the USGS

Fault maps from the USGS



1870, Dec. 4 Pueblo-Ft. Reynolds -- VI

1871, Oct Lily Park, Moffat Co. -- VI

1880, Sep. 17 Aspen -- VI

1882, Nov. 7 North-Central CO 6.5* VII

1891, Dec. Maybell -- VI

1901, Nov. 15 Buena Vista -- VI

1913, Nov. 11 Ridgway area -- VI

1944, Sep. 9 Montrose/Basalt -- VI

1955, Aug. 3 Lake City -- VI

1960, Oct. 11 Montrose/Ridgway 5.5 V

1966, Jan. 4 N.E. of Denver 5.0 V

1966, Jan. 23 CO-NM border near Dulce, NM 5.5 VII

1967, Aug. 9 N.E. of Denver 5.3 VII

1967, Nov. 27 N.E. of Denver 5.2 VI

Prepared by the Earthquake Subcommittee - Colorado Natural Hazards Mitigation Council

* = magnitude estimated for older earthquake; based on historical felt reports

Although many of Colorado’s earthquakes occurred in mountainous regions of the state, some have been located in the western valley and plateau region or east of the mountains. The most economically damaging earthquake in Colorado’s history occurred on August 9, 1967 in the northeast Denver metropolitan area. This magnitude 5.3 earthquake, which was centered near Commerce City, caused more than a million dollars damage in Denver and the northern suburbs.

This earthquake is believed to have been induced by the deep injection of liquid waste into a borehole at Rocky Mountain Arsenal. It was followed by an earthquake of magnitude 5.2 three months later in November 1967. Although these events cannot be classified as major earthquakes, they should not be discounted as insignificant. They occurred within Colorado’s Front Range Urban Corridor, an area where nearly 75% of Colorado residents and many critical facilities are located. Since March 1971, well after the initial flurry of seismic activity, 15 earthquakes of approximate magnitude 2½ or larger have occurred in the vicinity of the northern Denver suburbs.

Summary & Conclusions: Earthquake Subcommittee -

Colorado Natural Hazards Mitigation Council

Based on the historical earthquake record and geologic studies in Colorado, an event of magnitude 6½ to 7¼ could occur somewhere in the state. Scientists are unable to accurately predict when the next major earthquake will occur in Colorado, only that one will occur. The major factor preventing the precise identification of the time or location of the next damaging earthquake is the limited knowledge of potentially active faults. Given Colorado’s continuing active economic growth and the accompanying expansion of population and infrastructure, it is prudent to continue the study and analysis of earthquake hazards. Existing knowledge should be used to incorporate appropriate levels of seismic safety in building codes and practices. The continued and expanded use of seismic safety provisions in critical and vulnerable structures and in emergency planning statewide is also recommended. Concurrently, we should expand earthquake monitoring, geological and geophysical research, and mitigation planning.

The Colorado Geological Survey has several publications on Colorado earthquakes and potentially active faults, and maintains a reference collection on Colorado seismicity that includes reports by consultants or agencies. A listing of the reports can be viewed at the CGS web site,


Be Prepared....

Earthquakes strike suddenly, violently and without warning. Identifying potential hazards ahead of time and advance planning can reduce the dangers of serious injury or loss of life from an earthquake.

BEFORE Check for hazards in the home.

Fasten shelves securely to walls.

Place large or heavy objects on lower shelves.

Store breakable items such as bottled foods, glass, and china in low, closed cabinets with latches.

Hang heavy items such as pictures and mirrors away from beds, couches, and anywhere people sit.

Brace overhead light fixtures.

Repair defective electrical wiring and leaky gas connections. These are potential fire risks.

Secure a water heater by strapping it to the wall studs and bolting it to the floor.

Repair any deep cracks in ceilings or foundations. Get expert advice if there are signs of structural defects.

Store weed killers, pesticides, and flammable products securely in closed cabinets with latches and on bottom shelves.

Identify safe places in each room.

Under sturdy furniture such as a heavy desk or table.

Against an inside wall.

Away from where glass could shatter around windows, mirrors, pictures, or where heavy bookcases or other heavy furniture could fall over.

Locate safe places outdoors.

In the open, away from buildings, trees, telephone and electrical lines, overpasses, or elevated expressways.

Make sure all family members know how to respond after an earthquake. Teach all family members how and when to turn off gas, electricity, and water.

Teach children how and when to call 9-1-1, police, or fire department and which radio station to tune to for emergency information.

Contact your local emergency management office or American Red Cross chapter for more information on earthquakes.

Have disaster supplies on hand.

Flashlight and extra batteries

Portable battery-operated radio and extra batteries.

First aid kit and manual

Emergency food and water

Non-electric can opener

Essential medicines

Cash and credit cards

Sturdy shoes

Develop an emergency communication plan in case family members are separated from one another during an earthquake (a real possibility during the day when adults are at work and children are at school), develop a plan for reuniting after the disaster.

Ask an out-of-state relative or friend to serve as the "family contact." After a disaster, it's often easier to call long distance. Make sure everyone in the family knows the name, address, and phone number of the contact person.

DURING If indoors:

Take cover under a piece of heavy furniture or against an inside wall and hold on.

Stay inside.

The most dangerous thing to do during the shaking of an earthquake is to try to leave the building because objects can fall on you.

If outdoors:

Move into the open, away from buildings, street lights, and utility wires.

Once in the open, stay there until the shaking stops.

If in a moving vehicle:

Stop quickly and stay in the vehicle.

Move to a clear area away from buildings, trees, overpasses, or utility wires.

Once the shaking has stopped, proceed with caution. Avoid bridges or ramps that might have been damaged by the quake.

Pets after an Earthquake

The behavior of pets may change dramatically after an earthquake. Normally quiet and friendly cats and dogs may become aggressive or defensive. Watch animals closely. Leash dogs and place them in a fenced yard.

Pets may not be allowed into shelters for health and space reasons.

Prepare an emergency pen for pets in the home that includes a 3-day supply of dry food and a large container of water.

AFTER Be prepared for aftershocks.

Although smaller than the main shock, aftershocks cause additional damage and may bring weakened structures down. Aftershocks can occur in the first hours, days, weeks, or even months after the quake.

Help injured or trapped persons. Give first aid where appropriate. Do not move seriously injured persons unless they are in immediate danger of further injury. Call for help.

Listen to a battery-operated radio or television for the latest emergency information.

Remember to help your neighbors who may require special assistance--infants, the elderly, and people with disabilities.

Stay out of damaged buildings. Return home only when authorities say it is safe.

Use the telephone only for emergency calls.

Clean up spilled medicines, bleaches or gasoline or other flammable liquids immediately. Leave the area if you smell gas or fumes from other chemicals.

Open closet and cupboard doors cautiously.

Inspect the entire length of chimneys carefully for damage. Unnoticed damage could lead to a fire.

INSPECTING UTILITIES IN A DAMAGED HOME Check for gas leaks--If you smell gas or hear blowing or hissing noise, open a window and quickly leave the building. Turn off the gas at the outside main valve if you can and call the gas company from a neighbor's home. If you turn off the gas for any reason, it must be turned back on by a professional.

Look for electrical system damage--If you see sparks or broken or frayed wires, or if you smell hot insulation, turn off the electricity at the main fuse box or circuit breaker. If you have to step in water to get to the fuse box or circuit breaker, call an electrician first for advice.

Check for sewage and water lines damage--If you suspect sewage lines are damaged, avoid using the toilets and call a plumber. If water pipes are damaged, contact the water company and avoid using water from the tap.

You can obtain safe water by melting ice cubes.

Earthquake preparedness information provided by FEMA.

Legal Issues Workshop

With a huge Thanks to Nicole Cantrell who supported the 2011 Colorado Emergency Management Conference as a part of the Eastern Colorado Incident Management Team, the summaries below provide an insight into discussions/presentations made during the Legal Issues Workshop held on the final day of the Conference.


Legal issues in Emergency Management Liabilities in Ordering and Managing Resources

This presentation focused in the legal aspects and implications that must be taken into consideration when ordering resources for an incident. Bruce Holloman began his presentation by touching on the importance of an all hazards approach to incident response and the criticality of having response personnel properly trained before an incident occurs. Certain levels of instruction and training have been established for all levels of government and local responders. These levels directly correlate with the level of response that is required for each individual incident.

Resources must be trained to minimum standards, have obtained necessary training and credentials, and have the appropriate skill set needed to handle an incident or respond efficiently. If these minimum standards are not met, and an injury to person or property occurs, liability ensues.

Bruce discussed the NIMS resource management system and the fact that it's implementation is crucial in standardizing resource typing, credential, inventorying and identifying resource requirements. Resource issues must be discussed before an incident to effectively handle the needs of the situation. This pre-planning must discuss agreements, mutual aid and payment problems that may arise during an incident response.

Resource databases like Connect Colorado and the Colorado Emergency Resource Inventory Report and the ROSS system were discussed. These unique systems allow Emergency Managers and command staff to quickly identify resources that can be easily located and utilized during responses. As part of the State of Colorado Emergency Resource mobilization plan, and under Executive order 24-32.5-1210 CRS the resource inventory report is a website for Colorado agencies to enter resources. ROSS is a computer application that was developed and has been implemented through an interagency initiative by the National Wildland Fire Group to automate resource ordering and status processing to help facilitate coordination of resources.

Volunteer Liability - Volunteer Liability Presentation Slides
Timothy R Gablehouse

Mr.Gablehouse gave a very insightful presentation on the issue of liability and volunteers. The definition of liability is something that is hard to grasp, and he was able to offer a very clear picture of this concept. Liability as a volunteer can vary in scope, depending upon the worrying situation. Workers and their liabilities are very different from the liabilities of volunteers. The liability changes for a volunteer during an active disaster, and is clearly not the same as it would be during a planned exercise or meeting. Volunteers are always personally accountable, but the liability for their actions falls to the person who trained them and authorized them to work within the field. Managers can have liability even when the volunteer may not.
Governmental immunity is something that every employee should understand. Coverage or immunity is only offered to protect employees when they are working within their normal scope of work. Exceptions to this immunity include malicious or acts of bad faith, criminal acts, and civil right violations, among others.

Another key legal document that discusses the rights of volunteers to legal protection is the Federal Volunteer Protection Act. Individuals who are working without compensation and within their normal area of responsibility for a government or nonprofit agency will be covered by this act, but a long list of others who will not be offered protection were named. This created a lot of discussion among the group, since many people have volunteers working for them often during disaster, and spontaneous volunteers who self present to incident scenes. This discussion brought up the option of purchasing insurance for individual activities such as drills or exercises. It was mentioned that often time’s contractors will even work to bring this coverage in for agencies as part of the work they are contracted to perform. It is imperative to look for ways to protect volunteers through cooperative agreements or auxiliary status since accidents and incidents do occur during times of crisis.

IMT Teams
Andy MacDonald, Todd Manns, Don Whittemore

This presentation focused on the role of an incident management team during an incident. As Emergency managers it can be daunting to imagine a group of people you have never worked with coming in during a crisis and taking over command. The role of the IMT’s was defined to explain this procedure. Teams are not meant to be brought in to take over, but rather support the needs of the affected area. Whether authority is transferred to the incoming team, or maintained by the local command, the teams play a support role.

The capabilities of each type of team were explained, and the role of each position within the team was defined. It is clear that teams work very hard to train and drill as a cohesive group, and can bring additional support and expertise during a critical time. The salmonella incident in Alamosa was very unique; the town had been sued before the incident had even ended. The work that was put into the planning and documentation of the incident to be ready for litigation was an extremely interesting topic; this is one of the only instances of a case of a law suit occurring during an incident.

Colorado Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster Workshop

Colorado Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (COVOAD) is a network of voluntary organizations working together to encourage more efficient service delivery to people affected by disasters in the State of Colorado. COVOAD achieves this by facilitating effective cooperation, coordination, communication, and collaboration at all community levels, and by providing a platform to foster partnerships among non-profit and faith-based organizations, the private sector and government agencies.

How does COVOAD help when a disaster strikes in Colorado? COVOAD can facilitate access to much needed resources through it's network of disaster relief agencies with minimal or no cost to local communities.

Today's workshop covers COVOAD orientation, strategic plan updates, how to integrate and activate COVOAD resources, presentations by member agencies on recent actions and afternoon sessions focused on recovery.

Colorado Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster - Workshop Presentations

Quick Activation Guide
Memorandum of Agreement 211-Division of Emergency Management (Template)
Colorado Donations Volunteer Management Network (CDVMN) - One-Page Info Sheet
COVOAD Sub-Committee Sign-Up Sheet
COVOAD Strategic Plan
COVOAD Strategic Plan (No Attachments)
COVOAD Brochure
Donations-Volunteer Coordination Team Fourmile Canyon Fire After Action Report

2011 Colorado EM Conference - Day Two Presentations/Handouts

For presentation and speaker contact info for each of the presentations/handouts below, see the 2011 Colorado Emergency Management Conference Program


Day Two Presentations/Handouts

Managing Logistics:  Resource Ordering and Management
National Weather Service:  Utilizing Weather Related Tools - Social Media
Managing Functional/Special Needs Through an Emergency
EOC Setup:  Brainstorming Session
-- Summit County EOC
-- Baca County EOC
Managing Situational Awareness During an Actual Emergency
What to Do With a $3 Million FEMA Grant
-- Division of Emergency Management
-- City/County Denver
Social Media Situational Awareness
-- DEM Social Media PIO Information
-- Social Media Situational Awareness:  PIOs and Mapping, a Low-Tech "How To"
Increasing Efficiency by Minimizing Distraction
Flood Season and Flood Decision Support System
Information Sharing-Joint Information Systems
-- Pueblo County - Joint Information Systems at the Local Level
-- Division of Emergency Management - Colorado PIO Group
Navigating Through EMSystems
-- EMTrack
-- EMResource
Colorado Earthquakes

Day Three Flyer

While today was the final general session day of the 2011 Colorado Emergency Management Conference, tomorrow participants will break down into two full-day workshops.  One workshop will focus on Legal Issues in Emergency Management, while the other will focus on Colorado Voluntary Agencies Active in Disasters (COVOAD).  Accordingly, our Eastern Colorado Incident Management Team has produced the Conference Day 3 Flyer for the workshop day!

Agency Having Jurisdiction

Presenters: Chuck Vale ( and Todd Manns (

This presentation sought to clarify nuances with regard to the agency having jurisdiction on a critical incident or expanding emergency. Chuck started by clarifying that you cannot do the job of emergency management without considering on how authority is defined. Citing at the County level, then authorities are delineated by county commissioners through statutes/resolutions or in the city/municipality through ordinances. Agency, on the other hand, is not as clear. There are a number of people that roll into any party. How do you sort it out?

Take for example a building collapse. Why? Who controls? Fire/first responders? Crime scene? law? Building officials through a building code... if it exists? Public health if there is asbestos? Who owns an incident? High water, mudslides, avalanche, wildfire, road closures, structure fire, building collapse, public health, each presents a unique set of partner agencies and authorities.

So, how do we in Colorado fight through this issue? Division of Emergency Management. field representatives do this by helping identify the location of incident, nature of incident, principle responding agency and policy group. To varying degrees, similar though processes have been pursued at the local level and then adopted through statute or regulation. It is necessary to do this at the local level in Colorado prior to an incident because we have a myriad of special districts, home rule, and responsibilities. It is paramount to consider this prior to an incident.

Appointing command is not the same as conveying authority. There are legal considerations and steps that must be taken to ensure that once a decision has been made, it is subsequently codified. It is easier to do this in a conference room, with a form and issue papers, versus in front of a burning building. This also takes an ego check to make sure it happens smoothly and outside the issues of rank and on-site command.

We, in incident command systems or emergency management, say that agencies get checked at the door, but does this really happen? are there job obligations, conflicts and chains of commands the span or bleed the lines? Are there legal obligations that might be crossed in assuming an incident command role with respect to their home agency? Now... can you explain that in front of a jury, can you make it understandable to laypersons? These considerations should function as the motivators for you to consider these issues prior to an incident. Keep on mind you cannot assign statutory authority, such as in the case of a Sheriff. Only by statute change or ordinance/chartered can temporary command authority be delegated. Experience shows, too, that this is worth careful consideration prior to an incident because there are a number of multiple jurisdiction authorities. These existing delegation of authorities or combinations of authorities should be considered in advance.

Slides will be posted later today.

Managing Logistics: Resource Ordering and Management

Managing Logistics:  Resource Ordering and Management Presentation - Additional Resource Docs

Presenters: Bruce Holloman ( and Bill Miederhoff (

This presentation introduced Colorado's new resource management system, the Connect Colorado System. The system includes pre-planned mission packages based on Colorado threats, planning, response, mitigation, and includes priority resource ordering, location of closest resources and the process for ordering resources from the State EOC to be tracked through the demobilization phase. This system is the first emergency response database to provide resources from both governmental agencies and all private sector entities, designed to truly enhance one-stop shopping in Colorado.

Activating resources in Colorado rests in multiple launch points. Emergency managers, sheriffs, county commissioners, some large cities, tribes or incident commanders can all tap into and request resources in the event of an emergency. The preferred route at the state-level to track resources is through the county emergency manager.

Holloman reviewed the steps in the Colorado Resource Mobilization Plan and stressed how the Connect Colorado System has been designed to mirror the plan. Essentially, in the past incidents were handled by local incident commanders and when resource 'knowns' were exhausted, the Hail Mary went out. The concept behind Connect Colorado is to enable available resources to self-identify and indicate their availability. While there is a ROSS system in place, the Connect Colorado System is intended to enhance the ability to identify resources based on location and provide a wider-range of opt-in participation from public and private sector resources.

To go through the Connect Colorado System, Bill Miederhoff from the Division of Fire Safety walked through a slide presentation with screen shots of the system (presentation will be posted online). Bill indicated that ROSS was not designed to accommodate sheltering systems, snowplows and other all-hazards. The idea is to combine the powerful ROSS dispatching capabilities with a Colorado-based resource database that has a greater degree of capacity and all-hazard options.

A special balance was built into the system to accommodate nondisclosure acts and protection of proprietary information. There is a vetting process with each private sector resource to ensure they are who they'll say they are and can deliver resources identified. For all users, the system is designed to be we-based so it is accessible on multiple platforms and designed to be user-updatable.

The system walk-through slides will be posted online later today, but system questions can be directed to

2011 Colorado EM Conference - Day One - Presentations/Handouts

For presentations and speaker bios for each of the slides/handouts below, see the 2011 Colorado Emergency Management Conference Program

Day One - Presentations
Engaging Schools in Emergency Management
Colorado State University - Mass Inoculations Clinic
Survival and Death in Disaster
Disaster Housing Strategies and Resources
Multi-Agency Coordination (MAC) Group
Effective Use of HAM/Volunteers in EOC
211:  A Critical Tool in Times in Disaster
Guidelines for Preparing Community Recovery Plans
Disaster Communications

Day One - Handouts
Area Command Team Responsibilities
Volunteer Liability
Mutual Aid Issues

Day Two Flyer

Great, full, info-packed day at the 2011 Colorado Emergency Management Conference.  To gear up for tomorrow, here take a look at the Day 2 Flyer and check out Day 2 on the Conference Program.

Director Kallam - State of Colorado Emergency Management - Town Hall

Presenter - Hans Kallam

Director Kallam notes that his agenda is more free-form and intended to be a discussion. He started by addressing efforts to professionalize emergency management. Citing issues related to control, we have to be careful not to stovepipe ourselves and should rely on the varied backgrounds and expertise that make up emergency management. As we look forward, the need to maintain flexibility is paramount.

One of the things we as managers need to keep focused on is that funding will be core to decisions in the future. Emergency management has been a growing, funded effort. That may not always be the case and we need to plan accordingly. As resources continue to be further challenged at the local, state and federal levels we cannot rely on an assumption of the same levels and expectations of funding in the future. We must seek efficiencies and we should think about that now in the event that cycles change. We will still need to plan for, resound to and manage disaster, we just may have to do it with fewer resources.

On the Division, the focus is on integrating exercises with the State emergency elements and rotating those integrated exercises with local emergency operations centers across the state. the Division continues to test our Emergency Management Academy as a first, beta attempt at standardizing training in Colorado. We will be looking to seek feedback and move forward with our partners in the future.

Kallam then opened the floor up to a town hall question and answer approach.

The first question was related to Citizen Corps Funding. Kallam indicated that while he hasn't heard anything specific, every program that is federally funded must plan for funding levels to go down.

The second question queried state activities and pre-planning being done to offset the potential reductions in funds at the local level. Kallam indicated that we are just looking at that now because the first seeds of this potential for reduction are just being planted. Kallam indicates the key is to reevaluate every step we take and how it materially enhances citizen safety.

The third question addressed how the State will help educate elected officials on the potential impact of reduced funding. Discussion focused on roles and responsibilities on information-sharing both from the local level to organizations as well as from the State-level down. Right now, Kallam indicates we simply do not know and as such, it is prudent to take steps to consider how we, as a community, will engage elected officials in educating them as to what we do and how we might operate under more limited funding. Kallam also noted that the Division is working on an elected officials guide to emergency management that will touch on some of these issues and serve as a reference point for emergency management education efforts in Colorado.

Mike Gavin added that the State All-Hazard Advisory Committee is an alternate forum to share ideas and thoughts.

Multi-Agency Coordination Group

MAC Presentation Slides
Presenter - Mike Chard

Presented by Mike Chard, City and County of Boulder Emergency Manager, started by asking participants what they anticipated to learn during the Multi-Agency Coordination (MAC) Group Process. Listening to the responses, Chard reminded that while you may not call it a MAC system, you have one in place even though you might not realize it. Chard's goal is to show how this applies, noting that while Boulder's model might not be the right answer for every community, the basic systems are already present on your community it is just a metter of recognizing and codifying it.

If you are engaged in any community grant planning process, you probably already have the right people in place. Command, resource coordination centers, emergency operations center, disperse local agency coordination entities, communications centers all are parts of the MAC. These elements may take the form of emergency managers, mutual aid agreements, red cross, county commissioners each can fill the positions and serve on these committees. The difference is the extent to which these elements are brought into the process. It needs to be inviting and all-inclusive to work. It also must be a creative system.

The Emergency Operations Center is the core of this process and doesn't have to be complex. The system is important, not the technology. A functioning system can still be rooted in radios, telephones and simple forms provided that the training and familiarity of participants is strong. Boulder's EOC is a support and coordination concept. Must be able to sell the business plan of the EOC.

In the Boulder approach, MAC groups must own logistics and planning, and the EOC manager coordinates with the policy group. The time to set up representation from across the community spectrum, like the involvement of a school district, is not at the point that a disaster is underway. The Boulder approach is a contingency system rather than a plan. Plans fail.

The MAC group is responsible for establishing priorities, locating and obtaining resources, deconflicting policy and procedural conflicts between partner agencies and maintaining relationship with the policy group. The emergency manager who coordinates the MAC group is responsible for feeding the policy group with the common operating picture. The MAC group is the horsepower that enables decision makers to act. The MAC group is also the place where department heads from across the community can be updated, bound together, informed and kept up to speed.

Example of how a policy issue is handled by a MAC is volunteer and donations management associated with Fourmile Canyon Fire. Once the decision to engage was made by policy officials towards donations management to assist those affected, the MAC was necessary to coordinate logistics and planning to obtain support from nonprofit, private and public agencies from building to legal to communications to public information pointed in the right direction to achieve the general objectives set by the policy group.

Building this system at the local level starts with the policy group. Inventory your environs from both a MAC system (how the elements link) and the MAC Group (who make up the elements). An important consideration to set up a system is who comprises this and do not rely on regular incident command system/first responders who, in the event of an incident, will be at the incident.

NOTE: you also have to write it down. The words and thoughts mean nothing unless we write it down. Brief, concise and to the point is the only way to begin to craft a MAC group and system. You have to start recruiting, forming policy groups, and for participation you have to make assessment on local infrastructure and be able to communicate support. You also have to remember that the model must rely on behavioral relationships and are not static efforts. You must be able to understand people and how they are motivated to act to maintain group cohesion.

Chard then presented a case study on a fictitious Lindsey County that walked participants through the complexities of seeking the right people to formulate a MAC (slides will be posted on COEmergency at the conclusion of today's activities).

It is important to remember, too, that this cannot be a control-based group management activity. It is going to be flexible and built on trust. You have to also be able to manage expectations of members who may not be finely-honed and fully-trained members of your team.

Disaster Housing Strategies and Resources

Disaster Housing Presentation Slides
Presenter(s) - Bob Wold and Iain Hyde

With so many sessions to attend, it was hard to choose which one to cover. However, given the potential need and impact of housing across a wide section of emergency management, the messaging resources and current state-level planning efforts underway to address disaster housing seemed like a pressing issue widely applicable.

Providing interim and permanent housing resources to disaster survivors is at the heart of community recovery efforts following a disaster. This session addresses disagree housing typically available and resources to support local and state disaster housing strategies. The session also addressed housing task forces and development of a toolbox of resources that can be implemented when needed. Bob Wold and Iain Hyde from The Colorado Division of Emergency Managements Mitigation Office provided the briefing.

Wold started by providing an overview of the State Disaster Housing Task Force and described his role in facilitating that group, along with the Division of Housing of the Department of Local Affairs and associated Federal and nonprofit partners on that Task Force.

Disaster housing is a key part of the recovery process. Wold reviewed the wide range of issues that must be considered cultural, population density, each will affect local decisions on response planning. Regardless, in most communities, the locally available rental resources will provide the bulk of short term available housing options. Disasters inevitably produce a large need for affordable housing. While manufactured housing such as under federal assistance programs, as another option, they should be considered recognizing the challenge of putting these in place in a community.

It is important to keep in mind that housing will not always be an ideal situation. Being able to move into an apartment or temporary housing location helps survivors establish stability's they begin the process of recovery and rebuilding. The optimal solution is to move people from shelters back into their homes, skipping interim housing. Small scale disasters generally produce short term needs while repairs to structures are made. The nature and scale of the disaster will drive the type of housing that best meets the needs of the affected population.

Every community planner needs to take a look at the local hazards, available options and think creatively when considering how to develop a housing response plan. Proximity to schools employment, public transportation, health care, former neighborhoods, family and friends will all be important considerations.

Urgency to get things back to normal will be powerful, but planners must take advantage of the small window of opportunity to consider and introduce mitigation measures, engage in sound urban planning, revisit building codes, and devise strategies with economic goals in mind.

Sheltering, interim and permanent housing are the three types of housing. The most often faced needs in Colorado fall into the sheltering category. Red Cross and local government generally fields theses capabilities. While people are in shelters during a situation where there are interim needs, there are a number of programs available to assist in housing repairs, which local housing authorities and state housing officials will help link requests to needs.

There are potential grants available to communities to request this assistance in the event of a disaster. Potential funding sources include Hazard Mitigation Grants, Flood Mitigation, Repetitive Flood, Pre-Disaster Mitigation and Community Development Block Grants may all be sources on funding in the event of a disaster. Most of this assistance is contingent upon the presence of a Hazard Mitigation Plan at the local level. DEM Mitigation Office in Colorado is the point of contact for local governments to ensure their hazard mitigation plans are in place and in a position to ensure qualification for housing assistance.

While there have been on average 50 declarations of disaster per year, in most cases, federal help is neither requested nor provided. Rental properties are generally the first source and case officers must be aware of resources available for disabled residents. Manufactured housing, sometimes called Katrina Cottages, are another option. Assistance is available through Red Cross and as well as TANF, which is housing a human services temporary assistance for needy families. HUD community block development grants and rural development disaster loans and grants from the US Department of agriculture are other options, but there are eligibility requirements related to income for federal programs. Again, local public housing officials and state officials will be the first line of organizing this kind of assistance.

One of the things that mitigation officials have seen disaster after disaster is that people are underinsured. State officials urged that emergency managers and residents check their level of insurance coverage prior to a disaster. Insurance remains the best preparedness step an owner can take to lessen the impact of a disaster.

Wold reviewed the Colorado experience in providing horsing assistance to those displaced by Katrina, citing that bringing the Red Cross early into the sheltering process and ensuring that memorandums of understanding with volunteer organizations are in place is key to a smooth process. Fire wise Programs, insurance are all key to individual mitigation efforts. Remember that flood insurance may not be a part of your plan so check!

As the State works this issue, there is a safety net site is being stablished ton assist local officials at In the event of a disaster, state and local officials will have a central resource to employ to ensure requests are linked with need in accordance with fair housing act and with protections both for those seeking assistance and providing it in a centrally accessible database for case officers across the state. As these plans are finalized, there will be much more provided to emergency managers on this toolkit.

Conference Admin Note: Electronic Tier II Reports

Tim Gablehouse ( provided a handout to Conference attendees we wanted to make sure you received at check-in regarding Electronic Tier II Reporting options.  There are two good options:  1) download and use Tier II Submit to manage these reports and that is available at or 2) download and use CAMEO and that is available at  The State's web page also has links at  In either case you can directly import either the t2s or zip files facilities send in.  Contact Tim Gablehouse if you have questions at

James Lee Witt Keynote Notes

Mr. Witt took the stage to share his ideas to participants on disaster management and response. Sharing some personal insights, he described how he became the Director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency under Former President Clinton.

Stressing that people and relationship building as the key to constructing public-private partnerships, he urged participants to prepare communities by having the identification of hazards and solutions generated from the ground up. Project Impact is an example of whole of community preparation that we, as a community, might consider to accomplish this task. The role of state and federal representatives in this type of organization is that of an organizer and support element.

He recalled the efforts he supported in Haiti, immediately following the earthquake. He cited how the partnership between Former President Clinton, Google and the private sector to secure and provide medical supplies to local hospitals was, despite the hardships, effective in making an on the ground difference. By funneling supplies, and by helping construct over 4.5 months, a government infrastructure partnering with the private sector helped provide structure and organization amidst the chaos.

He cited that the one thing we, as a community, do not do enough of is long term recovery planning and community preparedness/mitigation training at the local level. Especially in times of scarce resources, we must build capacity at the local level. This is the challenge of emergency management to help organize and manage.

Noting that we are at a time in history where events will need to be managed with less. Building codes, community training, capacity development are all keys in meetng the challenges of tomorrow. Taking the lessons learned from recovery remains essential in this task.

Make a Difference.

2011 Colorado EM Conference Opening Ceremonies

After the presentation of colors by Loveland Fire-Rescues Honor Guard and an impressive rendition of the national anthem by Rebekka MacCaleb, Mayor Guiterrez of the City of Loveland welcomed participants to the conference and Loveland. Stressing his experience in the Colorado National Guard, Mayor Guiterrez spoke about his recollections of moving to Colorado and enduring the Big Thompson flood of 1976 and the Christmas Eve Blizzard of 1982. He spoke about not only the disasters, but also on the political ramifications of disaster and stressed the importance of emergency management. Noting that this preparation spills across disasters and the lessons learned can be applied to events to help on training and managing events. He invited participants to visit downtown Loveland and the many restaurants and businesses.

Hans Kallam, Director of the Division of Emergency Management then took the podium to welcome participants to the Conference. Thanking participants for taking the time to attend the conference, away from the desk and inbox. Recognizing the Executive Conference Committee, Hans highlighted the amount of collaborative work that went into building the conference agenda, speakers and documents and vendors. Specifically, he called upon the group to recognize Cindy VonFeldt. Hans also called upon participants to engage with the vendors to share stories, needs, and ideas. It is this sharing of ideas that make the tools we rely on efficient and effective. Hans then challenged participants to seize this chance to build friendships and partnerships we will leverage down the road. Make no mistake, it will happen. Colorado has a great team in this regard.

Hans briefly covered the transition time that faces us in terms of opportunities with a new administration and chance to consider and retool, if necessary, our collective efforts. Stressing the need for this process to find an elegant solution that makes us efficient, Hans noted this conference is an opportunity to share ideas on how this process moves forward. Citing that emails are being sent to stakeholders in this process today, that the opportunity is before us to make sure your voices are a part on this discussion to ensure the best possible service to the taxpayers in Colorado.

Following administrative remarks, Mike Gavin the Master of Ceremonies and City of Fort Collins Emergency Manager welcomed Robin Finegan, Federal Emergency Management Agency Region VIII Administrator. Administrator Finegan noted that Colorado isn't the most active of disaster regions in Region VIII, and that is a good thing. Citing the above and beyond the call of duty nature of the emergency management community, she talked about the new FEMA administrations effort to involve the entire community as a part of disasters. The idea that everyone, not just those in emergency management, has a part in becoming more resilient. Every individual, nonprofit, business, government and individual has a role to play. The whole of community idea isn't new to Colorado, of course. Stressing that should this is ongoing, we must start to think of disaster survivors as solution-drivers. Inherent in culture at the community level must be resiliency. We saw it recently on Boulder. The community is driving the response on how best to bounce back from the front range fires of 2010.

Administrator Finegan challenged participants to identify what are the concrete steps we can take to galvanize the whole of community? Then, she charged participants to consider how we can draw on public, private and nonprofit efforts at the local level and how to operationalize the concept of the whole of community. The ideas, she urged, can be emailed to her or to Hans to consider. She added that emergency management is administrative and fiscal, but that isn't really what it is all about. In fact, emergency management exists as a human story. The job is about those special moments that change who you are or your relationship with the community. Administrator Finegan finished by thanking participants for their service.