The third week of February was filled with training sessions for the East Northport Fire Department. Four individual training sessions were held by the Department for its members, and members from outlying departments.
On Thursday, February 18th, the ENFD hosted Janet Romeo, of the Epilepsy Foundation of Long Island. She spoke to members of the Rescue Squad, as well as other EMS certified firefighters about the recognition and treatment of epilepsy.
According to the Epilepsy foundation, Epilepsy is the 4th most common neurological problem – only migraine, stroke and Alzheimer’s disease occurs more frequently. The estimate of those currently effected by epilepsy is thought to be 2.2 million people or 7.1 for every 1,000 people. Early recognition and treatment by pre-hospital providers is vital to ensuring the safety of those suffering from the disease.
On the same night, interior based firefighters took part in a Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) drill. Using the departments training facility at One, Ninth Avenue in East Northport, members were able to practice search and rescue operations in simulated fire and smoke conditions. By simulating these conditions, firefighters are able to work with the breathing apparatus with similar visibility as if in a real fire situation.
Led by the officers of Hook and Ladder Company 1, Captain Tom Bourne Sr, and Lt. Matt Cambria, the SCBA Maze, as it is called, allows veteran firefighters a chance to improve their already impeccable skills and gives new members the opportunity to use full firefighting gear in a search situation without the threat of actual fire.
On Saturday, February 20th, the department underwent training for a new EMS protocol in Suffolk County. The training provided dealt with New York States new "Check and Inject" pilot program. Through evidence based practice, New York State has found an more efficient and cost effective way to treat anaphylactic shock, rather than the traditional use of Epi-Pens by pre-hospital providers. According to the Suffolk County Regional Emergency Medical Services Council website:
"Based on the significant increase in cost of Epinephrine Auto-injectors, coupled with the relative infrequent use of stock, the NY State Emergency Medical Advisory Committee (SEMAC) and the NY State Department of Health, Bureau of Emergency Medical and Trauma Services (BEMTS) have commissioned a Pilot Demonstration Project that offers a viable cost-effective solution. The Suffolk County EMS Division and the Suffolk Regional Emergency Medical Advisory Committee (REMAC) endorse agency participation and are pleased that once again, our agencies and providers have an opportunity to test processes that improve patient care across NY State."
The use of the "Check and Inject" Kits has already begin and all EMS providers in the department will continue to train on its use.
On Sunday, February 21st, the department conducted training in their Rapid Intervention Team response. According to a report by the US Fire Administration, a Division of Homeland Security,
"While ongoing prevention efforts, realistic training, effective policy development, and firefighter discipline all can help reduce the risks of injury and death on the job, the inherent dangers of firefighting require that fire departments prepare for one of the most difficult assignments of all: rescuing one of their own. The use of rapid intervention teams (RIT) can facilitate these rescues when an emergency occurs. Rapid intervention teams are created specifically to rescue lost and trapped firefighters."
The training, led by Captain John McCoy of the ENFD, took the members through the didactic portion of what is involved in a Rapid Intervention Team. This was only an overview of the RIT and hands on training will take place at the Suffolk County Fire Academy in the coming weeks.
The East Northport Fire Department consists of over 120 volunteer members who respond to over 2600 fire and EMS calls annually. Training is provided through various mean throughout the course of the year and every member is encouraged to participate in all trainings.