Urbana's Arbor Division Pairs-Up with UFD for "Training Op"
Last week, Urbana Public Works, Arbor Division had a training operation-or what is commonly called a training "op."
The Arbor Division provides certain services for the maintenance and planting of trees and green spaces and for operation of a county-wide landscape recycling center. In a City like Urbana, who is one of the charter members of Tree City U.S.A., this is a huge responsibility. According to Bruce Cubberly, Urbana Public Works Arbor Manager, "Last week's training was called an aerial rescue. It is a requirement of arborist certification for working in trees."
So, the division met on the south lawn of the City building to complete their training exercise.
Enter the Urbana Fire Department.
This group is stellar. Usually training for at least two hours per day on issues of anything that involves keeping people safe, saving people and the list goes on. The UFD is considered to be one of the best-trained departments in the area, if not the region. The UFD is home to MABAS-Illinois' Technical Rescue Team. The Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS) provides emergency rapid response and sustained operations when a jurisdiction or region is stricken by an overwhelming event generated by manmade, technological, or environmental threats. In response, MABAS will mobilize and, deploy a sustained fire, emergency medical services (EMS), hazardous materials, technical rescue, water rescue, urban search & rescue, and incident management assistance team resources to prevent loss of life, human suffering and further damage to property. So, together these two highly-trained divisions of the Urbana City Government, trained for a rescue.
"The Arbor Division was doing some training on rescuing /lowering members from a tree. We just happened to find out and decided to watch. They allowed us to utilize equipment that the arborists use. Some of that equipment can be similar to Technical Rescue equipment but not what Fire carries on our truck E251. So they were kind to allow us time into their training. We tried- not well- to learn how to get up a tree. This would not be the normal way fire would have been taught to get in a tree. We showed some of our tactics, and we also talked about getting together for a few training evolutions in the future so our departments can work better together if something would happen in the field," Mark Clapp, UFD Lieutenant, said.
It's all in a day's work to these people, and they all reflected on the fact that they learned a great deal by the collaboration.