IAFC president urges fire and EMS preparedness for post-election civil unrest
Chief Richard Carrizzo shared several resources to help fire and EMS chiefs prepare for an uptick in disturbances
By Janelle Foskett
The president of the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) released a statement Friday, urging fire and EMS leaders to prepare for the possibility of civil unrest sparked by the election results.
Chief Richard Carrizzo noted in his statement that both media reports and law enforcement briefings have warned of incidents similar to the unrest that occurred over the summer. He then offered resources to help fire departments provide service to their communities.
“If the nation faces civil unrest in the coming weeks, it is important that fire and EMS departments continue to provide lifesaving service to their communities,” Carrizzo said. “These resources will provide you with critical information to help you operate safely during a time of uncertainty.”
Civil unrest resources
- Response Considerations: Incidents Involving Crowds Following the 2020 National Election Period: This new document — by the IAFC Terrorism and Homeland Security Committee — discusses potential threats during the period before, during, and after the November 3 election. This document discusses incidents, including cyberattacks, civil unrest, and arson. It also includes operational considerations and resources.
- Incidents Involving Crowds During the COVID-19 Pandemic: This IAFC document details nine response considerations that fire and EMS departments may encounter when responding to incidents involving large protest crowds that escalate into violence.
- Best Practices for EMS and Fire Response to Incidents During Civil Unrest: This document, prepared by the U.S. Fire Administration and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, provides information about protecting personnel, vehicles and stations, along with how to safely operate during a period of civil unrest.
- Violent Extremists & Terrorists Exploit Civil Unrest and Public Assemblies in the U.S.: This two-page report summarizes the civil unrest threat and includes resources for local public safety agencies’ use.
- Protecting Infrastructure During Public Demonstrations: This DHS document provides guidance and resources to prevent and mitigate the opportunity for unlawful acts during public demonstrations.
- Urban Fire Forum Civil Unrest White Paper: This 2016 joint IAFC-NFPA-Metro Chiefs document provides information about working with your community, developing unified command with law enforcement, force protection, and operations during periods of civil unrest.
- Urban Fire Forum Draft Standard Operating Procedure: This 2016 document provides a draft SOP to help fire and EMS departments respond to incidents of civil unrest.
- IAFC Terrorism Response – A Checklist and Guide for Fire Chiefs and Community Preparedness Leaders: This IAFC document provides a framework to help fire and EMS departments prepare for, respond to and recover from acts of terrorism and other large-scale incidents.
- IAFC Checklist for Active Shooter Response: This IAFC resource is a two-page document to help incident commanders when they arrive on scene at an active shooter incident.
- IAFC Active Shooter Toolkit: This members-only IAFC resource provides access to reports, briefings and other information to help fire and EMS departments prepare for active shooter incidents.
- IAFC Homeland Security Intelligence Guide for Fire Chiefs: This guide provides information to help fire and EMS chiefs contact federal, state and local homeland security and law enforcement partners to access information about threats to their community.
Additional resources from FireRescue1
FireRescue1 Editorial Director Greg Friese authored “Post-election civil unrest: How public safety can be prepared,” underscoring that while we don’t know what we will awake to on Nov. 4, fire and EMS personnel must focus on professionalism, choosing to help and not acting as an accelerant in an already chaotic environment.
Atlanta 1st Deputy Fire Chief Byron Kennedy shares “Civil unrest 2020: 3 key takeaways from Atlanta’s front lines,” underscoring the value of collaboration with public safety partners and the need for enhanced technology.
Rachel Engel outlines top points from the Lexipol webinar “Caught in the Middle: Fire department response during civil unrest,” which you can view on demand.