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Live TV Footage as aid to first response in major disaster

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  • Live TV Footage as aid to first response in major disaster


    Stop or ignore me if this is a stupid or inappropriate question.

    Given that nowadays TV crews are at major disasters soon after or nearly as fast as fire crews in these cases are there provisions in any departments to view the nearly always "live" feeds that are shown on TV?

    Would this give a bigger or quicker help to assessing what is going on?

    The reason I ask is having just recently seen the documentary following a proby on 09/11 in the lobby of WTC I thought if they had seen the video footage of the fire and the collapse they may have been better informed as to what was going on?

    Anyway it was just somthing I always wondered.

    Stay safe, never forget and God bless all the brothers

  • #2
    At a fire a few years ago, in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, a TV helicopter shot some footage of a fire in a row of frame buildings. The camera was equipped with a FLIR and flipped it on. You could see the fire's progress in the cockloft through the thermal image. A downlink to the command post would have been a huge benefit to the IC.


    • #3
      We have a deal with one of the local TV news stations that we get raw footage from any of the large fires we have in our areas. Its amazing, a 15 sec blurb on the local news is often cut down from hours of video taken at the scene
      A'int No Rocket Scientist's in The Firehall


      • #4
        A couple of years ago in Calgary, we had a major condo complex go up during the construction stages. Basically we had an entire city block on fire all at once, with exposures on 2 sides starting to go. This was about 12-15 blocks from downtown, and 6 blocks from the city's cable TV provider's headquarters. All the local media turned their remote-controlled downtown rooftop cameras to view the scene, and so did the cable TV provider with their own remote. We used our recreational TV in Dispatch to get a good look at what the crews were facing at scene, and it made it a lot easier to understand what they meant when they referred to buildings such as "The next one closest to the river".

        Speaking to the overall topic of video feeds supporting command operations, we have three different methods of getting video to the commanders, and I've seen all three in use - and I'll confirm, it works.
        • One, there is a remote controlled full color camera mounted on a telescoping boom on the roof of the command bus, hooked up to a 21" TV inside, dedicated to showing the feed off the camera.
        • Two, the local Amateur Radio Emergency Services group have video cameras that they can broadcast over their wireless frequencies, and can be viewed in the command bus, in the ARES trailer, or by repeater, in the EOC at Dispatch.
        • Three, the police helicopter is equipped with a full color video/FLIR device. Either an observer from the fire department can be taken up to review it in the air, or it can be beamed down (I think) to the command bus and/or Dispatch using the same technology as the ARES crews.


        • #5
          Intresting concept... It works too. Ever wonder why they make you watch all those live fire videos in Firefighting school, or Live haz-mat videos in Haz-Mat school. Well...

          Bruce, 19, EMT-1D, Haz-Mat FRO, C.A.
          Bruce Baker

          Medic Student, EMT-I, EMT-I instructor, Haz-Mat FRO

          Fraternal Order Of Paramedics Society Member

          R.I.P. 343, 9/11/01, God Bless America.


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