Posts Tagged Mutual Aid Box Alarm System

Of interest … MABAS

Excerpts from

MABAS is an organization that jumps into action in the event of a major incident where the local fire department would be unable to cope on its own. The Mutual Aid Box Alarm System coordinates the response to large fires, train accidents, hazardous material incidents, airplane crashes, earthquakes, and other emergencies with large numbers of causalities, providing intelligent and effective standardized rescue methods. It can mobilize 38,000 of the 40,000 firefighters in Illinois, and assists fire departments in Iowa, Indiana, and Wisconsin, while also providing equipment. The system is funded by its member organizations and no one is charged for its services. 

HAIX® traveled through the suburbs of Chicago and up north to Wheeling, the home of MABAS Division 1. As we traveled the facility, there were trucks of all sizes loaded with tons of equipment and trailers with back-up material, including 500 ladder trucks, 1,300 ambulances (many paramedic capable), 250 heavy rescue squads, and 1,000 water tenders. Fire/EMS reserve units account for more than 1,000 additional emergency vehicles. These are the vehicles that a single fire station could never afford. There are also double-decker boat trailers, mobile ventilation units, and mobile post commands.

In 1970, the MABAS system was established to provide a swift, standardized, and effective method of mutual aid assistance for extra alarm fires and mass casualty incidents. Today, the organization includes nearly every fire department in Illinois, as well as many areas of Iowa, Indiana, and Wisconsin. MABAS-IL includes approximately 1,000 of the states’ 1,200 fire departments organized within 67 divisions. MABAS-IL divisions span an area from Lake Michigan to the Iowa border and south almost into Kentucky. Twelve Wisconsin divisions also share MABAS with their Illinois counterparts. The cities of Chicago, St. Louis, and Milwaukee are also member agencies. 

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Arlington Heights Fire Chief to retire

The Daily Herald has an article about a retirement announcement of the Arlington Heights fire chief:

After almost four decades with Arlington Heights, Fire Chief Glenn Eriksen announced Monday that he will be leaving the department next month to take a position with MABAS-Illinois, the Mutual Aid Box Alarm System. Ericksen will end his 39 years with the Arlington Heights Fire Department on Feb. 13. He is only Arlington Heights’ fourth fire chief since the village switched from a volunteer department to a full-time paid department in 1958

Ericksen will be working as section chief of administration with MABAS-Illinois, according to the release. MABAS is a statewide mutual response system for fire and EMS teams.

Ericksen’s final salary at Arlington Heights was $139,711, according to the village’s human resources department. Ericksen could be eligible to earn up to 75 percent of that salary in annual pension, in addition to his new salary at MABAS.

Ericksen started as a fire alarm operator with the Arlington Heights Fire Department in 1974 and became a firefighter in 1981. He was a firefighter/paramedic from 1986 until 1993, when he was promoted to fire lieutenant. He had also been a fire captain, fire commander and deputy fire chief before being named chief in 2004.

During Ericksen’s time as chief, the fire department obtained a grant that allowed it to hire an additional nine firefighters and was honored with the 2010 SAFE Communities Designation from the National Safety Council on behalf of the World Health Organization. He also oversaw the addition of an emergency operations center, which is used as a communication headquarters for the village in case of a local disaster.

Dixon said he will name an acting fire chief next month before starting an open search for Ericksen’s replacement.

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MABAS Division 31 aids tornado victims

Dennis McGuire, Jr. found this article detailing a mission for two Galesburg firefighters and the MABAS Division 31 Decon Unit to assist downstate residents that were affected by the tornados last week. The article is from last Tuesday.

Two Galesburg firefighters are on their way to the southern Illinois city of Marion to help victims of recent tornados in that part of the state. John Seitz and Brock Schmitt are taking the Galesburg Fire Department De-Con, or decontamination, truck to help provide a place for showers to others helping tornado victims.

Battalion Chief Brad Stevenson said this morning the Mutual Aid Box System request came in Monday. MABAS is a partnership with the Illinois Emergency Management Agency to help in times of disasters. Stevenson said the firefighters are expected to arrive in Marion at about 1 p.m. today.

MABAS Division 31 DECON Unit

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