Local Emergency Planning Committees (LEPCs) work to understand the hazards in the community, develop emergency plans in case of an accidental release or natural disaster, and look for ways to prevent accidents. The role of LEPCs is to form a partnership between local governments and industries to enhance all hazards preparedness. The local government is responsible for hazmat planning and response within their jurisdiction. This includes:
- - Ensuring the local hazard analysis adequately addresses hazmat incidents;
- - Incorporating planning for hazmat incidents into the local emergency management plan and annexes;
- - Assessing capabilities and developing hazmat response capability using local resources, mutual aid and contractors;
- - Training Responders;
- - Exercising the plan.
Minutes from the previous meetings can be found here.
PROVIDING THE HIGHEST QUALITY CARE OF NORTHWEST KANSAS CITIZENS.
Providing Emergency Medical Services for Sherman County and the Cities of Goodland, Edson, Ruleton, Caruso, and Kanarado. NWKSAS has a dedicated staff of Full time, Part time, and Reserve employees. NWKSAS provides 911 response for Sherman County and Inter-facility transports for surrounding area hospitals.The Northwest Kansas Ambulance Service operates five ambulances have advanced life support (ALS) capabilities. We also house the Mass Casualty Equipment Trailer that can be deployed to anywhere in the Northwest Kansas area. Two ALS ambulances are on duty 24/7, one ambulance staffed by two full time employees and one volunteer does 911 responses. The other ambulance, staffed by two full time employees does inter-facility transfers. Secondary or overflow calls are covered by dedicated off-duty staff and/or part-time/volunteer personnel.
Inner Facility Transfer Service
The Northwest Kansas Ambulance Service has 24/7 ALS staffing available to facilitate your inter-facility transfer needs. We offer a variety of transport services to hospitals. rehabilitation facilities, and nursing homes throughout Kansas and Colorado including:
Basic Life Support (BLS) – NWKSAS provides a valuable community resource for the patients requiring a non-emergent transport.
Advanced Life Support (ALS) – NWKSAS provide inter-facility ALS transports where they are needed.
Advanced Life Support – Paramedic and Nurse Level – NWKSAS staffs both paramedic level and Registered Nurse level techs for these types of transfers. For these, NWKSAS provides a level of care comparable with a hospital intensive care unit.
To request a transfer, please call (785)890-1111.
Sherman County Emergency Communications Center answers 9-1-1 calls that originate from residences within Sherman County Kansas, including all wireless 9-1-1 calls. Sherman County was the first in the state of Kansas to have Phase II capabilities, which is the capability to receive the latitude and longitude of the wireless call. However, not all cell phones are capable of providing this needed information. See more under wireless 9-1-1.
What is 9-1-1?
When you need emergency help, quick response is critical. Enhanced 9-1-1service is an advanced telecommunications system designed to gather necessary information and dispatch emergency services as quickly as possible. Here’s how it works in our coverage area. All calls to 9-1-1 are answered 24 hours a day by call takers at the Sherman County Communications Center. The call taker's computer screen automatically displays the telephone number and the location where the call originates. At the same time, the screen displays a listing of the police, fire and medical agencies serving that location.
How Efficient is 9-1-1?
The call taker transfers the vital information to the appropriate incident dispatch screen. This means that fire, emergency medical or law enforcement help can be dispatched with just one call to 911.
Even if a caller is unable to speak or hangs up, help is still sent. For this reason, it’s important that everyone in your household learns how and when to call 911 for emergency assistance.
HOW DO I USE 9-1-1?
When you need help in a hurry, 911 is easy to remember and fast to dial.
When you call 911:
- Try to stay calm and speak clearly. Ask for Police, Fire or Ambulance.
- Describe the emergency and answer all questions.
- Stay on the line until you are instructed to hang up. Although the screen automatically displays the telephone number and location, the attendant may ask you to verify the information.
- 9-1-1 service is available from any type telephone, rotary, push button, residence, business, cellular or public pay phone.
When do I Use 9-1-1?
Call 9-1-1 whenever you feel you have need of the police, fire or ambulance services.
We are proud to offer a technologically advanced service, such as Enhanced 9-1-1, to safeguard the health and safety of you and your family
9-1-1 should only be used when a true emergency exists. A true emergency is when an immediate police, fire and/or medical response is needed. Some basic examples of true emergencies are when life and/or property are in immediate danger, when a crime is in progress or has just occurred, or when someone needs an ambulance.
For non-emergency situations, the communications center should be called by using the ten-digit phone number (785-890-4575).
When a 911 call is received, the dispatcher answering the call must be told the location and nature of the emergency. Additionally, emergency responders require a detailed description of the emergency; as well as the name, address and phone number of the person calling 9-1-1.
If the emergency requires an ambulance, the dispatcher will also ask several important medical questions. The ambulance and fire department response to the emergency is based on the answers provided by the caller. Dispatchers will always need to know if the person needing the ambulance is conscious and if they are breathing. Once the reason for the ambulance is ascertained, more specific questions will be asked.
While the ambulance is on the way, the dispatcher may also be able to provide critical pre-arrival instructions, such as CPR (Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation) or how to deliver a baby. Sherman County Communications utilizes the Medical Priority Dispatch System, developed by Priority Dispatch Corporation. This system is constantly being researched, validated, and updated when necessary.
When the 9-1-1 number was inaugurated in Haleyville (Ala.) as the result of an AT&T proposal, it was intended as an easily-remember, no-coin method of reaching the correct law enforcement, fire and EMS agencies. However, since 9-1-1 procedures are under the control of local agencies, many different policies have developed for the proper use of 9-1-1 since it’s first use.
Today, officials estimate that over 270,000 calls are made to 9-1-1 each day in the United States.
Although the term “9-1-1” has come to mean the entire public safety communications system, in fact, it’s simply a dedicated telephone system for relaying calls from the public. It is not the only method of reaching the police, fire or EMS agency, nor does it include many other telephone, radio and computer systems that an agency relies upon to communicate.
A 9-1-1 system is considered either Basic or Enhanced. A Basic 9-1-1 system provides three-digit dialing, no-coin is required from pay telephones and intelligent routing to the Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) that handles the area where the phone is located. An Enhanced 9-1-1 system adds the ability to display the caller’s address and telephone number at the PSAP for the dispatcher’s reference. Some 9-1-1 systems also have the ability to automatically ring-back the caller on hang-up, to lock a line open for tracing, or the ability to transfer callers to other agencies or telephone numbers with a single button.
In general, 9-1-1 is an emergency number for any police, fire or medical incident. Some jurisdictions allow citizens to dial 9-1-1 for any type of police, fire or medical situation. In some cities, this has resulted in a flood of 9-1-1 calls that agencies cannot promptly receive, answer or respond to.
The following section describe the Do’s and Do Not’s of 9-1-1 under its original “emergencies only” purpose.
- - Do not program 9-1-1 into your auto-dial telephone. You won’t forget the number, and programming the number invites accidental dialing of the number. Also, please do not dial 9-1-1 to “test” your phone or the system. This needlessly burdens the dispatchers and system with non-emergency calls.
- If you live in a region that is subject to natural disasters (earthquake, tornado, hurricane, etc.), pre-plan a method of communicating with family, friends and relatives before an incident occurs. Choose any emergency contact outside the area that will be affected by the disaster. Make them the relay point for those who want to contact you. After the disaster hits, you can make just one telephone call to your contact, and have that information relayed to all those you care about.
- Dial 9-1-1 only for an emergency. An emergency is any serious medical problem (chest pain, seizure, bleeding), any type of fire (business, car, building), or any life-threatening situation (fights, person with weapons, etc.). Most jurisdictions also urge citizens to use 9-1-1 to report crimes in progress, whether or not a life is threatened.
- Do not dial 9-1-1 for a non-emergency. Instead, dial the agency’s listed 7-digit non-emergency telephone number. A non-emergency incident is a property damage accident, break-in to a vehicle when suspect is gone, theft of property (when suspect is gone), vandalism (when suspect is gone), panhandlers, intoxicated persons who are not disorderly, or cars blocking the street or alleys.
- Do not pick up the telephone and put it down if you don’t hear a dial-tone–you’ll tie up the telephone network and delay obtaining a line. Stay on the line until you hear the dial-tone. If you hear a fast-busy, all circuits are busy–try again later. If you reach a recording, the telephone system isn’t available for your call–try again later.
- In many large cities, 9-1-1 calls are answered by a dispatcher if one is available. However, if all call-takers are busy on other calls, the 9-1-1 call is answered by a call distributor that holds the call, and then automatically routes it to the first available call-taker. Do not hang up if you reach a recording, and try to call back. Stay on the line and your call will be answered in order. If you hang up, your call will be delayed because you will be placed at the end of other callers.
- Your 9-1-1 call will automatically routed to the police, fire or EMS agency that handles the area where the telephone is located. In general, 9-1-1 calls are answered by the area’s law enforcement agency, who either handles the call or transfers it immediately to the appropriate agency.
- If you dialed 9-1-1 in error, do not hang up the telephone. Instead, stay on the line and explain to the dispatcher that you dialed by mistake and that you do not have an emergency. If you hang up, a dispatcher will call back to confirm that there is no emergency. If you don’t answer, a police officer or deputy must be dispatched to confirm that you are OK. This will needlessly take resources away from genuine emergencies.
- Briefly describe the type of incident you are reporting. For example, “I’m reporting an auto fire,” or “I’m reporting an unconscious person,” or “I’m reporting a shoplifter.” Then stay on the line with the dispatcher—do not hang up until the dispatcher tells you to. In some cases, the dispatcher will keep you on the line while the emergency units are responding to ask additional questions or to obtain on-going information.
- If your call is answered by a law enforcement agency and you are reporting a fire or medical emergency, the call-taker will transfer your call—stay on the line while the call is transferred. The call-taker who answers will need information about the incident.
- Let the call-taker ask you questions—they have been trained to ask questions that will help prioritize the incident, locate it and speed an appropriate response. Your answers should be brief and responsive. Remain calm and speak clearly. If you are not in a position to give full answers to the call-taker (the suspect is nearby), stay on the phone and the dispatcher will ask you questions that can be answered “yes” or “no.”
- Be prepared to describe your location and the location of the emergency. Although an Enhanced 9-1-1 system will display your telephone number and location, the dispatcher must confirm the displayed address or may ask you for more specific location information about the victim or suspects.
- If you are a cellular caller, your telephone number and location will not be displayed for the dispatcher’s reference. You must be able to describe your location so emergency units can respond. Be aware of your current city or town, address, highway and direction, nearby cross-streets or interchanges, or other geographic points of reference.
- Cellular 9-1-1 calls are frequently routed to a central PSAP that could be many miles from your location. Be prepared to give the dispatcher your complete location—city or town, address or location, inside or outside, what floor or room, etc.
- Be prepared to describe the persons involved in any incident. This includes their race, sex, age, height and weight, color of hair, description of clothing, and presence of a hat, glasses or facial hair.
- Be prepared to describe any vehicles involved in the incident. This includes the color, year, make, model and type of vehicle (sedan, pick-up, sport utility, van, tanker truck, flatbed, etc.). If the vehicle is parked the dispatcher will need to know the direction it’s facing. If the vehicle is moving or has left, the dispatcher will need to know the last direction.
- Be patient as the dispatcher asks you questions. While you are answering the dispatcher’s questions, he/she is entering or writing down the information. If you are reporting an emergency, most likely a response is being made while you are still on the line with the dispatcher.
Listen to the dispatcher’s instructions for assistance if you are in danger yourself. The dispatcher may tell you to leave the building, secure yourself in a room or take other action to protect yourself.
Don’t hang up until the call-taker tells you to. Follow any instructions the dispatcher gives you, such as meeting the officers at the door, or flagging down the firefighters at the curb.
If you are able and have training, apply first aid to any patients who need it. Give the victim reassurance that help is on the way. Secure any dogs or other pets that may interfere with the emergency response. Gather any medications the patient is taking and which the medical crew will need to take with the patient.