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    749th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion hosts North Bay IMT multi-county emergency command post exercise

    749th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion hosts North Bay IMT multi-county emergency command post exercise

    Courtesy Photo | The North Bay Incident Management Team command establishes its operations center in...... read more read more



    Story by Capt. Christopher Meloy 

    224th Sustainment Brigade

    BENICIA, Calif. – The California Army National Guard’s 749th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion opened its facilities to the North Bay Incident Management Team (IMT) last month for the purpose of conducting a multi-county, multi-jurisdiction emergency services command post exercise (CPX) at the unit’s Benicia headquarters.

    North Bay IMT is a volunteer organization comprised mostly of retired first responders who work to best prepare local government agencies for large-scale civil emergency scenarios. The group was founded in 2012 to support local fire fighters and police officers with best practices for major incidents. The organization’s volunteers take pride in sharing their subject matter expertise in an open forum for participants to discuss ideas and experiences.

    CPX “Park Incident” included participants from the Valero Fire Department, Benicia Fire Department, Benicia Police Department, Marin Fire Department, Santa Rosa Fire Department, and Pacific Gas and Electric Company.

    The 749th CSSB Goldminers support operations officer, Maj. Diana Alvarez, was invited to attend the event as an observer and unit liaison.

    “It was an interesting experience to witness the similarities between the first responders and the military and how we operate,” said Alvarez. “They were definitely not shy in admitting that their techniques were inspired by the military.”

    The incident within the exercise simulated a nearby refinery fuel tank explosion and fire. North Bay IMT exercised entering into a unified command, assigning the Benicia and Valero Fire Departments with operational control and charging them with the responsibility to mitigate the effects of the accident.

    Exercise participants adopted roles and positions almost identical to the staff functions used by the military.

    The safety officer, plans section chief, logistics section chief, finance section chief, liaison and information officer worked to develop a plan and then presented it to the incident commander for approval and changes, mirroring the Army’s military decision making process (MDMP).

    The organizations came up with their course of action and resources available (a process known throughout the military as staff estimates) and provided a tactics brief to the incident commander. Once the plan was approved, the first responders were empowered to put it into action.

    Although the Benicia armory played host to the event, both the Valero and Benicia Fire Departments concluded that they would not use the facility in the event of an actual emergency under similar conditions due to the armory’s close proximity to the simulated incident.

    Overall, both organizations said they were thrilled at the opportunity to align common interests in serving the community during large-scale emergency and disaster scenarios. The North Bay Incident Management Team’s “Park Incident” also allowed the 749th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion to combine strategic thinking with local first responders and strengthen the Defense Support of Civil Authorities (DSCA) mission for the California Army National Guard.



    Date Taken: 06.05.2016
    Date Posted: 06.05.2016 22:24
    Story ID: 200052
    Location: BENICIA, CA, US 
    Hometown: BENICIA, CA, US
    Hometown: MARIN CITY, CA, US
    Hometown: SANTA ROSA, CA, US

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