CONCORD, Calif., Jan. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Utah Task Force 1 is responding to the Haitian earthquake crisis using new technology that will enhance its search and rescue mission. The elite 70-person Task Force, part of Salt Lake Urban Search and Rescue, will use the Coordinated NIMS Incident Planner, or CNIP, to coordinate its effort in the disaster zone. The Task Force will perform duties similar to that which it conducted in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and the World Trade Center attacks.
The Task Force sets a new standard by employing CNIP to manage its search and rescue. CNIP's ability to operate without the Internet is a unique advantage in a disaster like the one in Haiti, in which no electrical power is available.
Utah Task Force 1 arrives in Haiti equipped to conduct 24-hour rescue operations for victims of the structural collapses. Managing such an effort requires a sophisticated system of planning. CNIP was created with scenarios like the Haitian crisis in mind. The fully flexible new software will be used to set up the Task Force's Incident Action Plan (IAP), including the establishment of its management structure, control of personnel and resources, collection of all costs as they are incurred, and compliance with all FEMA requirements.
"We are very proud that Utah Task Force 1 identified CNIP as the ideal software to coordinate their efforts," says Mark Johnson, ESIS President and CNIP Co-Developer. "Disaster relief operations will definitely require multiple operational periods, each needing a new IAP and a separate set of ICS forms. In a major disaster, this could overwhelm any rescue organization. CNIP's fully flexible platform allows for constant changes and updating of the complex staffing requirements."
Utah Task Force 1 will operate CNIP from an IronKey Flash Drive, an encrypted, password protected, and tamper and water-proof storage device created specifically for the military and others with top security issues. With IronKey, CNIP is completely portable and accessible from any computer.
"IronKey ensures the security of Utah's Incident Action Plan," says Dan Linehan, CNIP Co-Developer and retired San Francisco Police Sergeant. "An event like the Haitian disaster causes concern about protection, which complicates the planning process. Using CNIP on an IronKey means their IAP is mobile and secure and always ready for operational changes."
CNIP also ensures the Task Force meets the requirements set by FEMA, a division of the Department of Homeland Security. Developed by Emergency Services Interactive Systems (ESIS-Systems.com), CNIP assists in the development and management of Incident Action Plans - a government requirement for all response agencies, and, some say, an administrative roadblock. CNIP can also be used to develop IAPs that can connect with different agencies.
Utah's Task Force 1 is part of FEMA's National Urban Search and Rescue Response. The task forces were established in 1989 as a framework for structuring local emergency services personnel into integrated disaster response task forces. FEMA later incorporated this concept into the National Response Framework, which uses NIMS and the Incident Command System to ensure a unified response to disasters and emergencies. CNIP meets and exceeds all requirements set by NIMS and ICS.
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SOURCE Emergency Services Interactive Systems