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Weapons of Mass Destruction & Terrorism Resources
We continue to receive a number of calls from services and EMS providers wondering what they could/should do to be prepared in the event that Maine should be a target for terrorist attacks.
Even though we have no indication that such an attack is likely, there are some prudent steps that can be taken which are good EMS practices, and which we have been promoting for years.
Make sure that all responders are current with their HazMat Awareness training. For those interested in Operations Level training, there is an excellent program available that can be funded by the Maine Special Emergency Response Commission (SERC). For details on how to get this training in your area, contact your County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) office. Please note that this is NOT the same as the Regional EMS Office. The EMA offices will help with the application and the funding for the programs.
Online Training Resources
Mutual Aid Agreements
This is a good time to take a look at your service's and your town's emergency response plan - and to work with your neighboring services to compile an inventory of available resources. Then update your plan(s) to reflect the current needs and resources of your area.
Especially communications equipment. In the event of a larger scale emergency, traditional means of communications may not work and cell phone towers may become either overwhelmed by calls or inoperable.
There have been and will continue to be rumors and seemingly credible stories circulating about one threat or another. Many of these are unfounded and are merely attempts to confuse or falsely alarm people. Using a little common sense and being aware of your surroundings without going into panic mode is always a good idea. If you hear a story or read a notice about a threat, please contact our office (207-626-3860). We will be acting as a clearinghouse for these reports so that useful information is passed on, and so that bogus information is appropriately identified and squashed.
There are a number of resources on the Internet for information about bioterrorism; however, many of them have either outdated or incorrect information. The National Centers for Disease Control Bioterrorism Page has helpful information and links to other credible sites.
Understandably, there has been a great deal of concern and confusion about smallpox. The State of Maine is beginning its vaccination program following the guidance released by the Centers for Disease Control and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. In phase two, the Maine plan does include limited vaccination of EMS providers in select areas with larger hospitals (>100 beds). Smallpox information can be found at the CDC Smallpox Page.
For More Information
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