DHSEM Update ~ May 31, 2013

Colorado Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management Update ~ May 31

Information included in this week's update:
  • National Response Framework:  Emergency Support Functions and Supporting Annexes Released
  • 2013 National Preparedness Report - Colorado Connection
  • The Colorado Emergency Preparedness Partnership
  • FEMA and Ad Council Help Americans Prepared for Severe Weather
  • Career and Volunteer Opportunities
  • Kudos 
  • Educational Resources
    • Be Red Cross Ready Workshops
    • Colorado Lightning Safety Awareness Week:  June 23-29, 2013
    • Brown Bag It:  Emergency Preparedness Program
    • Vision 20/20 Community Risk Reduction Class
  • Training Information
    • HSEEP
    • HazCat Basic 2.0 Identification Workshop
    • Training Courses Listed on DHSEM Website
  • DHSEM Leadership Calendars

Fire Crews Respond to Nine Acre Wildfire in Rio Blanco County: #COFire

Northwest Colorado Fire Management Unit crews are now responding to a Rio Blanco County, lightning caused wildfire near Willow Creek in the Piceance Basin.

The nine acre fire is burning in pinyon-juniper vegetation and is not threatening any structures. The fire behavior is creeping with some spotting and individual tree torching. The fire is on public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management. The BLM is currently exploring an option that will allow the fire to continue burning to meet beneficial resource management objectives.

Three type six engines and one type four engine are now responding to the fire. A Hotshot crew out of Craig is also fighting the fire.

Information provided by BLM Northwest Colorado District Public Affairs Specialist Christopher Joyner at  1:46 p.m. on May 24, 2013.

DHSEM Update ~ May 24, 2013

Colorado Division of Homeland of Security and Emergency Management ~ May 24

 Information included in this week's update includes:
  • State and Locals Combine Efforts to Combat Wildland Fires
  • 2013 Nonprofit Security Grant Program
  • 2013 Homeland Security Grant Program
  • DHSEM Offices Closed for Memorial Day Observation
  • The CEPP Update
  • OSHA Seeks Applications for $1.5 Million in Susan Harwood Safety and Health Training Grants
  • Oklahoma Recovery Efforts
  • Career and Volunteer Opportunities
  • Educational Resources
  • Training Opportunities
  • DHSEM Leadership Calendars

State and Locals Combine Efforts to Combat Wildland Fires: #COFire

Berthoud Fire Protection District and Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control Enter into Historic Agreement for the Joint Staffing and Operation of a State Wildland Fire Engine

On Thursday, May 16, 2013, the Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control and the Berthoud Fire Protection District will sign an agreement to jointly staff a wildland fire engine in Northern Colorado. This agreement, combining state and local resources on a daily basis is the first of its kind in Colorado. 

The signing ceremony will be at Berthoud Fire Protection District's main fire station at 275 Mountain Ave in Berthoud, Colorado at 1 p.m.

Colorado's system for combating wildland fires is a cooperative, inter agency system involving local, county, state, and federal agencies. The Division is the lead State agency for wildland fire suppression in Colorado. However, the Division is typically not called upon for assistance until wildland fires exceed the capability of the local jurisdictions to control or extinguish. The Division is exploring cost-effective and innovative service delivery partnerships to enhance the wildland fire suppression system within Colorado.

The Berthoud Fire Protection District is located in Southern Larimer County, and covers parts of Weld and Boulder Counties. The District is comprised of two stations that are staffed 24 hours a day and has a wildland fire program that provides resources to the inter agency system when needed.

Under the terms of the agreement, the Division is providing a specially designed wildland fire engine along with a fire officer (engine captain) to oversee operations. The District will provide year-round housing for the engine, and will provide two firefighters to staff the during the wildland fire season. The engine and crew will respond to wildfires in the District and its mutual aid response area, as well as state-wide as the need arises.

As an added benefit, when the engine is not out fighting wildfires, it will be available for other emergency responses within its boundaries. This will provide additional trained personnel at the scene of structure fires and other large incidents quickly, thereby, increasing the likelihood of stabilizing an incident quicker and more safely.

Both agencies are very excited about this new partnership and see it as a win-win situation. According to Stephen Charles, Chief of the Berthoud Fire Protection District, “we are able to add to our firefighting capability at little additional cost.” Paul Cooke, Director of the Division of Fire Prevention and Control adds, “Integrating State resources into local response systems will help to keep wildfires small, thereby reducing the threat to life and property.”

The division will be evaluating this program for potential future application elsewhere in the State.

For additional information about this agreement contact:

Matthew Branch
North East Regional Fire Management Officer
Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control
Robert Stumpf, Operations Chief
Berthoud Fire Protection District

Media Contact:

Micki Trost, Public Information Officer
Cell: 303-472-4087

Canon City Acquisition Project

The pictures below show Adam Lancaster, Canon City Engineer, and Scott Baldwin, Office of Emergency Management Mitigation Specialist, at the site of an acquisition project.  The home which had previously been located on the lot was subject to frequent flooding.  To reduce future risk of flooding to the home it was purchased and demolished through the use of FEMA's Repetitive Flood Claims (RFC) program and will be the site of open space in perpetuity.  

This sign will be posted at the finished project site.

DHSEM Update ~ May 10

Colorado Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management Update ~ May 10, 2013

Information included in this week's update:
  • Office of Budget and Finance Restructured
  • Updated Forms for Qualified Volunteer Organizations in Disasters
  • Homeland Security and All-Hazards Senior Advisory Meeting
  • Colorado Emergency Management Program Guide
  • Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program Full Scale Exercise
  • The Colorado Emergency Preparedness Partnership (CEPP) Update
  • SBA Economic Inquiry Disaster Loans Available to Colorado Small Businesses
  • National Planning Frameworks
  • National Response Framework - Second Edition
  • Kudos and Congratulations
  • Career and Volunteer Opportunities
  • Educational Resources
  • Training Information
  • DHSEM Leadership Calendars for Week of May 13

U.S. Forest Service Prepares for Fire Season with Media Event

The Rocky Mountain Region of the U.S. Forest Service will offer the media a regional update on the wildfire season and an opportunity to interview local firefighting personnel.


Regional fire staff, Monument Helitack crew, Engine Crew members and Pike Interagency Hotshots. The Pike Interagency Hotshots are a national firefighting resource.


Friday, May 10 from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m.

What to Wear
Please wear sturdy hiking or tennis shoes (no open-toed footwear). Weather at the site can be cool and we will be outdoors most of the time.

Take I-25 to the Monument Exit, 161
Travel west off the exit and the road will change to Second Street,
Go over a set of railroad tracks and the road will dead end at Mitchell Road,
Travel south on Mitchell Road about ½ mile,
Travel west on Mount Herman Rd about 1 ½ miles, (pavement will turn to dirt - look on the south for a Monument Fire Center sign),
Turn south into the Fire Center and go about ½ a mile to the classroom. Park in visitor parking.


Chris Strebig, cstrebig@fs.fed.us
USDA Forest Service
Rocky Mountain Region
740 Simms Street Golden, CO 80401

Emergency Officials Offer Flood Safety Tips: #COwx

Colorado Office of Emergency Management and FEMA Region 8 Provide Flood Safety Tips

In light of possible flash flooding coming off the burn areas of last year’s Waldo Canyon Fire and High Park Fire, emergency officials are reminding the public of the following safety tips from www.ready.gov. These tips apply during the current rainy conditions as well as preparing for or dealing with future heavy rains in and near the burn areas.

To prepare for a flood, you should:

  • Build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
  • Elevate the furnace, water heater and electric panel in your home if you live in an area that has a high flood risk.Consider installing "check valves" to prevent flood water from backing up into the drains of your home.
  • If feasible, construct barriers to stop floodwater from entering the building and seal walls in basements with waterproofing compounds.

During a Flood

If a flood is likely in your area, you should:

  • Listen to the radio or television for information.
  • Be aware that flash flooding can occur. If there is any possibility of a flash flood, move immediately to higher ground. Do not wait for instructions to move.
  • Be aware of stream, drainage channels, canyons and other areas known to flood suddenly. Flash floods can occur in these areas with or without typical warnings such as rain clouds or heavy rain.
  • If you must prepare to evacuate, you should do the following:
  • Secure your home. If you have time, bring in outdoor furniture. Move essential items to an upper floor.
  • Turn off utilities at the main switches or valves if instructed to do so. Disconnect electrical appliances. Do not touch electrical equipment if you are wet or standing in water.
If you have to leave your home, remember these evacuation tips:
  • Do not walk through moving water. Six inches of moving water can make you fall. If you have to walk in water, walk where the water is not moving. Use a stick to check the firmness of the ground in front of you.
  • Do not drive into flooded areas. If floodwaters rise around your car, abandon the car and move to higher ground if you can do so safely. You and the vehicle can be swept away quickly.
  • Do not camp or park your vehicle along streams, rivers or creeks, particularly during threatening conditions.

After the Flood

  • Your home has been flooded. Although floodwaters may be down in some areas, many dangers still exist. Here are some things to remember in the days ahead:
  • Use local alerts and warning systems to get information and expert informed advice as soon as available.
  • Avoid moving water.
  • Stay away from damaged areas unless your assistance has been specifically requested by police, fire, or relief organizations.
  • Emergency workers will be assisting people in flooded areas. You can help them by staying off the roads and out of the way.
  • Play it safe. Additional flooding or flash floods can occur. Listen for local warnings and information. If your car stalls in rapidly rising waters, get out immediately and climb to higher ground.
  • Return home only when authorities indicate it is safe.Roads may still be closed because they have been damaged or are covered by water. Barricades have been placed for your protection. If you come upon a barricade or a flooded road, go another way.

If you must walk or drive in areas that have been flooded.
  • Stay on firm ground. Moving water only six inches deep can sweep you off your feet. Standing water may be electrically charged from underground or downed power lines.
  • Flooding may have caused familiar places to change. Floodwaters often erode roads and walkways. Flood debris may hide animals and broken bottles, and it's also slippery. Avoid walking or driving through it.
  • Be aware of areas where floodwaters have receded. Roads may have weakened and could collapse under the weight of a car.
  • Stay out of any building if it is surrounded by floodwaters.
  • Use extreme caution when entering buildings; there may be hidden damage, particularly in foundations.

Staying Healthy

  • A flood can cause physical hazards and emotional stress. You need to look after yourself and your family as you focus on cleanup and repair.
    Avoid floodwaters; water may be contaminated by oil, gasoline or raw sewage.
  • Service damaged septic tanks, cesspools, pits and leaching systems as soon as possible. Damaged sewer systems are serious health hazards.Listen for news reports to learn whether the community’s water supply is safe to drink
  • Clean and disinfect everything that got wet. Mud left from floodwaters can contain sewage and chemicals.
  • Rest often and eat well.
  • Keep a manageable schedule. Make a list and do jobs one at a time.
  • Discuss your concerns with others and seek help. Contact Red Cross for information on emotional support available in your area.

Cleaning Up and Repairing Your Home

Turn off the electricity at the main breaker or fuse box, even if the power is off in your community. That way, you can decide when your home is dry enough to turn it back on.

Get a copy of the book Repairing Your Flooded Home (737KB PDF), which is available free from the American Red Cross or your state or local emergency manager. It will tell you:

  • How to enter your home safely.
  • How to protect your home and belongings from further damage.
  • How to record damage to support insurance claims and requests for assistance.
  • How to check for gas or water leaks and how to have service restored.
  • How to clean up appliances, furniture, floors and other belongings.
  • The Red Cross can provide you with a cleanup kit: mop, broom, bucket, and cleaning supplies.
  • Contact your insurance agent to discuss claims.
  • Listen to your radio for information on assistance that may be provided by the state or federal government or other organizations.
  • If you hire cleanup or repair contractors, check references and be sure they are qualified to do the job. Be wary of people who drive through neighborhoods offering help in cleaning up or repairing your home.

2013 Colorado Wildfire Potential Briefing on May 9

Media Advisory from Colorado Division of Fire Prevention & Control

Gov. John Hickenlooper will be briefed on the 2013 wildfire potential by the Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control, the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management on Thursday, May 9. The group will hold a media avail to discuss the 2013 wildfire season and preparedness efforts in Colorado.

Media and Community Briefing Details:

Date: Thursday, May 9, 2013

Time: 11:45 a.m. – Media and Community Briefing

Location: Centennial Airport, Hanger 2, 7625 S. Peoria Circle, Englewood.

Note to media: Parking is available in the lot just outside of the Jet Center. Check in at the desk to gain access to the hangar.

Who:  Gov. John Hickenlooper

           Paul Cooke, Director, Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control

           Brian Ferebee, Deputy Regional Forester, Rocky Mountain Region U.S. Forest Service

          John Mehlhoff, BLM Colorado, Associate State Director

Photo Opportunities:

· Single Engine Air Tanker (SEAT), pilot and base manager

· DFPC fire apparatus

· Department of Corrections fire apparatus

· Colorado National Guard Blackhawk Helicopter

Briefing Information Packet

Media Advisory

Information Contact:

Micki Trost, Public Information Officer
Cell:  303-472-4087

State EOC Monitoring Current Weather Conditions in El Paso County: #COwx

The State Emergency Operations Center (EOC) is currently monitoring weather conditions in El Paso County especially over the Waldo Canyon Burn scar.

The State EOC will be conducting a conference call with the Pueblo National Weather Service at 11:30 a.m. for updates on the current and predicted weather in the area.

OEM Announces New Resource Mobilization Staff

The Office of Emergency Management is excited to announce that De Lora Karavolas is transferring from CSP Communications to the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management.

Karavolas will be working in the Resource Mobilization Unit inside the Operations Section of OEM. Karavolas starts on Wednesday, May 8, 2013.

OEM anticipates additional new employees in the Resource Mobilization Unit as HB-13-1031 contains three FTE to handle the increased workload of making Resource Mobilization all-hazards and adding thousands of resources to the database/cooperators resource rate forms. HB-13-1031 passed the Senate on Friday.

May 4 Colorado Wildfire Preparedness Day of Service in Roxborough Park

Office of Preparedness and READYColorado Partner with the Roxborough Community to Mitigate Wildfire Risk

The Roxborough Fire Mitigation Committee will host a Wildfire Preparedness Conference at the
Roxborough Community Center. The Colorado Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, Colorado Office of Preparedness, READYColorado, and the West Metro Fire District are strongly supporting this event. Radio Disney will be combining youth entertainment with messages about emergency preparedness. Learning and fun are interactively presented to entire families.

Another family attraction will be the introduction of a family of goats to the community. Roxborough
fire mitigation projects planned for later in the summer, will incorporate goats (on a trial basis) to
remove fuels in areas too steep or rugged for mechanical treatments. A herd of 50 goats is reported
to be able to eat as much as 500 pounds of vegetation daily and this eco-friendly approach to wild land management leaves a minimal carbon footprint.

The West Metro Fire Department will position fire equipment outside the Community Center to
demonstrate their capabilities and tactics and to answer any questions. Fire department personnel
will also participate in keynote and breakout sessions throughout the day.

Programs beginning at 11am will cover in detail what was learned from last summer’s Waldo Canyon fire in Colorado Springs. The Ready, Set, Go wildfire action plan so crucial to saving lives and property through advance planning and actions will be covered.

The success of this Day of Service depends on your participation. There are events for the entire
family. Please give part of your day on May 4th to this important function. Light food will be served.

Listen to the Radio Disney Spot for the Roxborough Event:

Photos of activities that will be available at Roxborough Park

Battlements and Nick Mountain Prescribed Burns Scheduled: #COfire

As early as May 3, fire officials out of the Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire Management Unit plan to conduct a prescribed burn in the Battlements area, located approximately five miles northeast of Collbran and west of Brush Creek. Approximately, 900 acres are planned to burn and officials anticipate that the burn will take up to two days to accomplish. The area is comprised of both BLM and Forest Service managed lands. This work is a continuation of efforts to manage fire fuels (vegetation) on the south side of the Battlements area since the late 1960s. The purpose of the burn is to reduce fuels on the site and to generate wildlife habitat, browse and forage.

Officials plan to conduct a prescribed burn in the Nick Mountain area early next week. Approximately, 1,600 acres are within the burn plan, comprised of 1,176 acres of Forest Service, 556 acres of BLM and 35 acres of privately-owned lands. The area is broken into 4 burn units and fire officials plan to begin with the burning of 2 of these units, totaling about 700 acres. If conditions allow, firefighters may burn all or portions of the two additional units. Ignition will occur aerially with fire resources stationed on the ground to assure adequate control and fire intensity to remain within prescribed parameters. This area was previously burned in the late 1980s. The objectives of this burn are to reduce fuels (vegetation) on the site to help mitigate the intensity of wildland fires in the area and adjacent to privately-developed lands.

These burns are subject to conditions on the ground, and forecast weather being conducive to burning and within the parameters specified in the burn plans.

Grand Valley District Ranger Bill Edwards stated, “Many landscapes are out of ecological balance and the use of prescribed fire is one way of helping to restore that balance and help landscapes to become more resilient to threats.” He went on to state, “The use of prescribed fire is an important tool in reducing the risk of catastrophic wildfire and with appropriate planning and implementation, prescribed fire can help prevent extreme fires by reducing hazardous fuel buildup with minimal impacts to air quality.”

According to fire officials, smoke from the burning may be visible from various locations around the Grand Mesa. Most of the smoke will dissipate during the day; however, some of the smoke may remain in drainages as temperatures drop. A burn plan was created for this event along with the environmental analysis for the project. A burn plan specifies conditions and criteria that must be met prior to initiating the burn. A Smoke Permit has been obtained from the State as part of the preparation for the burn which specifies conditions as well.

According to Chris Farinetti, UCR Fire Management Officer, “We will only initiate this prescribed burn if conditions are within the required parameters and we can expect a safe, effective burn.” He went on to explain that firefighter and public safety are our number one priority and concern.

This information provided by Fire Information Officer Lee Ann Loupe from the Upper Colorado River interagency Fire Management Group.