Harford County / Overturned Commuter Bus

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troymail

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I-95 south of the Susquehanna...

Aviation requested....

Anne Arundel sending multiple medic units and MAB-32

Anne Arundel patched Anne Arundel Foxtrot to Harford County TAC.

WTOP Alert: Both sides of Interstate 95 in Harford County, Maryland, are closed because of serious crash.
 

troymail

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Anne Arundel Foxtrot patched to Harford D6

AA units crossing into Harford county and getting scratchy -- I wonder if they'll still have comms on AA when they get that far north.... Update: EMS-1 arrived and sounds pretty good...

Harford County sounds pretty overwhelmed right now...

Possible correction: WTOP is now reporting it as a commuter bus
 
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ocguard

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Anne Arundel Foxtrot patched to Harford D6

AA units crossing into Harford county and getting scratchy -- I wonder if they'll still have comms on AA when they get that far north.... Update: EMS-1 arrived and sounds pretty good...

Harford County sounds pretty overwhelmed right now...

Possible correction: WTOP is now reporting it as a commuter bus
It's a shame there aren't one or two regional systems in place to accommodate wide-area communications...
 

troymail

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It's a shame there aren't one or two regional systems in place to accommodate wide-area communications...
You mean like CMARC (which Harford resides on already)? FiRST?

This was a really, really unusual response for AA county... luckily the AA units were still able to reach the AA towers from almost Cecil County (they can probably thank the Bay for that).

I guess the next best thing if that would have failed would have been to have the AA units switch to one of the CMARC fire or event talkgroups (assuming they are programming in their radios - AA and Harford are both part of CMARC) and have that patched to the incident TAC. At least that way, they would be in solid coverage on the CMARC system.

Ultimately, I'm sure Harford County units wouldn't want to have to switch over to non-standard talkgroups on CMARC unless it was really really necessary. This same topic has come up several times about incidents that occur on the Bay Bridge -- "are we using AA talkgroups or QA talkgroups?" People ask "why don't they all switch to a common FiRST TAC talkgroup?"

Bottom line is that if it isn't something that you routinely practice, it's probably not a good idea to try new things in the middle of a major incident.
 

dpcain

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Bottom line is that if it isn't something that you routinely practice, it's probably not a good idea to try new things in the middle of a major incident.
All these agencies have CMARC in their radios.

A lot have FiRST as well, and that number grows every day.


The only people who train using these systems are senior commanders during very well-set, clearly labeled, scheduled occasional drills. The field firefighters and police hardly (if ever) do any of these drills. Additionally, not once have I ever seen a drill in Maryland that doesn't have a clearly labeled schedule and plan for everything from backup communications nets to who will be providing lunch. It's never off-the-cuff, and it's never something operational commanders and leaders have to figure out for themselves, like it would be in the real world.


So, all the resources to make situations like this smooth are there.


The training mindset and the operational thinking is mind-bendingly, disgustingly detached from reality.


This is a point I've raised several times, and I get a lot of excuses and stuck-record rationalization coming back at me.
 

troymail

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All these agencies have CMARC in their radios.
I'm pretty certain this is incorrect.

Anne Arundel (along with many other jurisdictions) doesn't really use CMARC - their comm centers barely even answer up on the daily Mutual Aid roll calls.

Most jurisdictions likely only have zones in their radios for the jurisdictions that they are immediately adjacent to and that they routinely respond into. Anne Arundel County responding into Harford County is somewhat of an extreme anomaly (I still can't believe it actually occurred) and ultimately was probably only because the county has a MAB ("ambulance bus") unit. Other units were most likely only sent to support that unit.

Having said that, I suspect this incident will likely cause a review of what could have worked better and perhaps additional systems/zones will be added in the future.
 
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