|Top of the Hill||Boots and Blisters||Business as Usual|
|Who's Who and New||Coming Attractions||Medical News|
|Feature Article||Web News||Disclaimer/Copyright|
|Top of the Hill||by David Dixon , President|
It's summer and I might normally say, "it's time for more missions". But this year is different and instead I'm forced to say, "it's time for more rain." The forests, our mission-grounds, are sadly dry and fewer users means fewer lost users. There are some open places in the state though so be prepared for some activity farther a field than our backyard.
It's always nice to have lots of missions but other things are still happening with this team. In fact here is a mid-year update of `What's going on with Cibola'.
Frances and I did a presentation of Outdoor Preparedness and the 10 Essentials to two classes of eager 3rd graders last month. They still think the biggest outdoor dangers facing them are bears, snakes and mountain lions - in that order. And I'm not sure they felt much different after our talk. I guess hypothermia just isn't exciting enough. Hopefully they'll have their essentials just in case the wild animals don't materialize. There will be other P.R. events this summer and fall so if you're interested in participating give Frances a call.
Steve B. and the committee have been working on the much-needed update of our Member Guide. It should be ready soon for a once-over so the rest of the team can vote on it. The changes are important so make sure you give them some thought. It's your Member Guide.
Now that he's not running the team and has a little more time to devote to our (his) website Tom has been working very hard making much needed changes and updates to the site and database. He would really appreciate constructive feedback on member information, the new phone tree, etc.- check our website and follow the signs.
It was nice to have more of our members getting their Ham license at ESCAPE. Now it's just as nice to see some getting their EMT. Mickey Jojola and David Chapek should be certified soon if they aren't already. Big congratulations to them for helping to keep us medically strong.
The officers will be meeting with their AMRC counterparts soon to discuss some joint trainings including our requested litter protocol. They also have expressed an interest in our Mock Search in September. It would be nice to see them attend this year. The more we work together, the better missions will go.
June Training on Hasty Search and Sound Detection was interesting, informative and well attended. I certainly learned some things on voices and whistles, wind and terrain. Stay tuned for a summer bivy (hopefully, forests permitting) and more great stuff from our Training Officer.
Finally, if you want something different Joyce is hosting a Bike of the Month on June 15. It's a good time to dust off and fix up that 2-wheeler in your garage and join her for a ride through the Manzanos. If you're new to Cibola this counts as one of your 3 events toward prospective status.
Get out, stay busy and above all good searching and rescuing.
|Boots and Blisters||by Aaron Hall, Training Officer|
Both trainings were well attended by CIBOLA members. As always, the ESCAPE conference was well worth the drive to Philmont. It will be held a Philmont again next spring, so start planning to go now. Five Cibola members participated in the Sunport Disaster Drill. Tom Russo and Terry worked as moulagers, Joyce worked debriefing the "meeters and greeters," and Larry and I played injured subjects. I only had superficial facial lacerations, but Larry had a broken collerbone and a displaced trachea. Tom's moulage job on Larry was almost as convincing as Larry's acting. For me, participating in the disaster drill as a subject was a great learning experience. I highly reccomend participating in this type of event. There is no better way to learn about a disaster than being part of a drill like this.
June's training was held last Saturday (the 8th). We practiced hasty search techniques by looking for clues (green flower pots)in a heavily seeded area, practiced critical separation, and experimented to determine the distances at which we could expect a subject to reliably hear voices and whistles. In open terain (Ellena Galleigos Trailhead) with a slight breeze (less than 5mph) we found that whistles could be reliably heard at distances up to 1/4 mile. We found that voices could be reliably heard at distances up to 1/2 mile. So remember next time you are on a search, you can expect your voice to carry twice as far as your whistle. Morale of the story: Get out there and shout!
Our next evaluation will search techniques on Saturday, June 22nd at the Embudo trailhead at the East end of Indian School. Our next training is scheduled for Sunday, July 14th. I wanted this training to be the summer bivy, but with all the national forests closed, we will have to do something else. I don't know what that will be yet, monitor the hotline and the website for details. They will be posted at least two weeks in advance of the training. The July evaluation will be Litter Handling on Sunday the 28th at the Embudo trailhead at the East end of Indian School. Next month I will conduct a Pre-Meeting Training on Litter tie-in procedures, so if you are rusty plan to come to the meeting early to brush up.
|Hike of the Month||Bike of the Month||0730, Jun 15, 2002|
|Trailhead: Sandia Ranger Station|
|R.T. Distance: 18 miles||Elevation Min/Max: 6300/7400|
|Hiking Time 4 hours||Hazards: Motor vehicles|
|Topo Maps: Sedillo and Escabosa|
|Hike Coordinator: Joyce Rumschlag|
|Business as Usual:Meeting Minutes||by Joyce Rumschlag, Secretary|
Aaron Hall requested (again) that team members wishing to be evaluated must call in for the evaluations. Evaluations have been cancelled because of failure to do so and people have even been left waiting because no one knew they were coming.
|Who's Who and New||by Steven Buckley, Membership Officer|
We received several new contacts this month but had no new prospective members. Several of you (50 percent of the team, in fact) got friendly E-mail reminders from me about their training status. Those E-mails served two purposes. The first was to verify that you agreed with the training database. Indeed, in one instance, I had made a mistake and incorrectly identified someone as only having one training when he had two. Most of the others sent me mail back that indicated that the database was correct. The second reason for my E-mails was to remind those without two training events this first half of the year that they were in danger of not being available for missions.
I saw myself getting a terminal case of writer's cramp writing all the "you can't go to missions" letters. Most of you took the hint and attended Aaron's Hasty Search training. Thanks for saving me from carpal-tunnel syndrome. Two members, Terry Hardin and Dave Dixon, attended six trainings and got a "gold star" courtesy of the webmaster. In fact, "Iron Man" Dave Dixon attended last night's mission with me, and Aaron's training today. While I felt a compelling need to go home and work on my beauty sleep (I know it isn't working...save the comments), Dave went to Aaron's training. A mission and a training in 24 hours! How does he do it? Four other members, Dennis Barnhart, Mike Dugger, Aaron Hall, and Tom Russo attended five trainings. Six members of our team need one training and two members need two trainings to become available for missions.
All in all, we have 29 people on the team so we have enough folks qualified to support a mission in the field to cover a tough litter evacuation. Thanks for the push in the end-game keeping most of the team mission capable. Lets review the requirements one more time. You are required to attend two trainings in each calendar year half. If you fail to attend two trainings in a half, you become Not Available for missions (NA). That means that you can't support the base camp or deploy into the field. You can handle Pager 1/2 if you choose.
The officers and I have been discussing how the NA folks get back on mission status. In my opinion, the best option is for the NA members to make up the number of trainings needed for last half by attending 1-2 of this half's trainings. If you need one, attend the July training and you are no longer NA. Of course, in this case the July training would not count against your required two trainings for the upcoming half. I intend to discuss this issue with the team at the June meeting so stay tuned for final disposition. I realize that we are in a slow period for missions. I also realize (and share in the opinion) that missions and helping folks is what this team is all about.
I also strongly believe that the training and evaluation standards that our team follows make us the best team around. Trainings keep our team capable and evaluations certify to all who care that we are ready to do our mission to the community. Aaron and his training helpers have done a great job organizing our training program and have offered several "fun" training events that were far from boring. During periods of limited missions, our training program becomes all the more important. Periodic trainings offer the opportunity to work together and keep the team strong. I urge you all to get out there and get the trainings that you need to stay available for missions. The team needs you! The community does too! I like to think of our team as being similar to volunteer firemen. Just because no houses have burned recently, doesn't mean we don't have to be ready for a fire. Trainings ensure we will be.
|Coming Attractions||by Tom Russo|
|Medical News||by Mike Dugger|
Second, we have just joined the EMS Region III Video Loan program. For an annual membership fee we get access to a catalog of over 300 videotapes that have been approved for CE credit. Over half of these, I'm told, are at the BLS level. Once we get the catalog I will begin requesting tapes and arranging times for us to view them. There are also test materials that must be submitted for CE credit. Mickey and I will need help from our medics, and potentially the whole team, in arranging locations for our roving video sessions. We can have a maximum of two tapes out at a time, so there will be many sessions to schedule.
Finally, the Annual EMS Conference is coming to Albuquerque on July 22-27 at the Hyatt, downtown. As in most of these events, there are pre-conference workshops Monday July 22 through Wednesday July 24. All-day workshops and multi-day refresher courses are offered, many with BLS medical CEs, at a fee additional to that for the conference. The conference itself runs Thursday the 25th through Saturday the 27th. Registration is $112 before July 12, $130 on-site, or $45 for Thursday alone and $80 for Friday or Saturday alone. There is a new type of CE offered at this conference, called "combination medical CE." This type of CE allows providers to receive BLS or ILS/ALS CEs as they need. My quick tally of CE opportunities at the BLS level (including the combination medical ones) shows 6 hours on Thursday, 5 on Friday and 3.75 on Saturday. If you can only make it for a day, it looks like Thursday is the day to go. If you have not received the latest issue of "EMS Focus" describing the conference, or need help, please contact either Mickey or me.
|Web News||by Tom Russo|
One thing I had noticed was that a small fraction of team members have been getting asked to get a "Magic Cookie" ever since I modified the default cookie expiration date from "Dec 31 2000" to "Dec 31 2020." For some reason some browsers have not been respecting that new expiration date, and have been throwing the cookies away at random intervals. I have completely rewritten the cookie generator to use Perl 5's easy-to-use cookie generating routine and changed the current website to use the new website's version, so perhaps now the cookies we generate will have the right preservatives in them. If you are one of the folks who have seen this annoying behavior, please let me know if it continues. At this writing I notice that some folks are still seeing this happen, and I'm at a loss for understanding why. It appears that some browsers are defective, and perhaps upgrading them is called for.
You may also notice that I have done away with the noisy "click-through" page that you normally get when accessing the database functions. The site used to make you "log in" when your session ID expired. For most functions the process is silent now; only in the case of more complex form access does the site ever ask you to do anything special to get a session ID.
Since some of the new software actually works, I have added a link to it from our membersonly page. Ideally, you should not find anything exciting about it --- it should do precisely what the old one did, and at the moment only does *some* of what the old one did --- but at least if you check it out and use it where possible you may help me track down errors. Also, if you see ways that you feel the layout, operation or look-and-feel of the site could be improved over the Old Way, now would be a good time to make suggestions. I have already implemented what I think is an improvement over the old mission log selection mechanism. Let me know what you think.
Lastly, for this issue of the newsletter I've set up the "members only" pages at the end to use the new phone tree program, just so you can see how it will look in the future. Note the addition of a new column of member status information that can contain either "(TD)" or "(W)." This column is constructed directly from training data, and reflects whether the given member has met all the training requirements for the team. "(TD)" stands for "Training Deficient" and is set if a member has not had two trainings in either this or the last 6 month period. "(W)" stands for "warning" and means that the member has not had two trainings in the current 6-month period but is still mission ready until the end of the period --- I have set this up to appear in the phone tree only during the last two months of a period, to give a quick visual indication of training status for those who still have a chance to correct it.
The new column of data taken directly from the training database should make life a lot simpler for both the membership officer and the members themselves. The old flag "Not Available" was really just a part of every member's membership data, and had to be set and unset by hand. Once the new software is fully functional, the "Not Available" flag can be retired as the primary way to indicate that a member is not mission ready as a result of missing trainings. "Not Available" can then be used for other purposes, such as when a member tells the membership officer "I'm unable to go to missions as I'll be traveling for a huge fraction of the month --- don't call me" or "I'm having a prefrontal lobotomy this week, and won't be able to attend missions for a while."
The hyperlinks in this newsletter's phone tree and "ICS Section Chiefs" tables
all point to the new software, which means they are not as functional as the
old one, but you can see where it's going. The old phone tree program can
still be accessed through the old "member information database" menu item on
the members only web page. I hope to get the new programs doing all that the
old ones did Real Soon Now, but it's slow going.
The team website can be accessed at http://www.cibolasar.org/
|Feature Article: SAR Cutting Tools II||by Steven Buckley|
As promised, this article will be about multi-tools and their SAR applications. I also want to expand the scope of this article to cover other tools that might be applicable to SAR operations. Let's start the discussion with multi-tools.
I remember when the original multi-tool hit the market. They cost about $25 dollars. I remember thinking that they were pretty hokey despite being a knife aficionado. A friend of my owned one and vowed that he would get me to buy one. Of course I resisted. Why buy a knife with set of pliers as an attachment for $25 when I could get a really nice folding knife for $15? Of course, many of you have already noticed the failure in logic of my argument. When I finally realized that a multi-tool was a pair of pliers with a knife attached to it and not the other way around I bought one. I immediately found myself grabbing stuff with the pliers, tightening small screws on light switches and stuff without having to go to the toolbox, and cutting the stuff that is really punishing to a knife (wire insulation, etc.) with the attached blade on the multi-tool, saving the blade on my fine pocket knife in the process. Since then I have rarely been without my multi-tool. I even carry one while dressed in "business attire" (boss hates jeans) since I work in a lab and find it handy for the minor tasks that don't require a formal run to the official toolbox.
I think multi-tools have great application for SAR operations. As noted above, the reason to carry one is for the "tool box on a belt" utility of the pliers and screwdrivers. The knife serves as a nice back-up to my pocket knife. Just think of the things that a multi-tool can do that a pocket knife can't, bend the crampon spike back in shape, snip and trim sharp wires off of the litter, pull that painful nail out of the sole of your boot, tighten a screw, pull out cactus spines, etc. etc. Sure that expensive single-bladed pocket knife can do some of that stuff but the multi-tool works better.
There are several other SAR tools worth mentioning here. At least one of our members carries a folding hunter's saw instead of the larger straight knife mentioned in last month's article. The saw is lighter, safer to carry, and can do all of the stuff you carry a larger straight knife for.
At least one member has a "pocket chainsaw." Think of a chainsaw chain with handles on both end. The chain is manually worked back and it works as good and almost as fast as a chainsaw. It's a little heavy but for under a pound you can handle really big (12" and larger) logs with a very durable tool.
The lightweight wire saws are useful only because they are small enough to carry "just in case" so long as your life doesn't depend on them. One hint with the wire saws is to keep them stretched in straight line while cutting. If you bend them around a branch the tension loads in the wire quickly exceed the strength of the wire. That's an engineer's way of saying...the wire breaks. Even when they are treated gently, they tend to break.
At least one member has been seen with a light hatchet strapped to his pack. His choice is a good one with a metal head and composite handle. It is one of the lightest hatchets that I have seen. On the other hand, a hatchet is like the larger straight knife mentioned last month. It is not really needed except in rare circumstances and should only be carried by those who don't mind a little extra weight to "be prepared." The same safety procedures for a larger straight knife (stout sheath, carried so a fall won't hurt people or things) apply.
The final type of SAR tools are specialized tools such as an ice axe. There are certainly times when an ice axe is a necessity. In fact, I pride myself on my skills with an ice axe, snowshoes, and crampons and my ability to use these specialized snow tools to serve our subjects. But, for the most part, the ice axe should stay home. To be honest, I carry an ice axe winter and summer on most of my hiking trips. It serves as a great cathole digger, walking stick, occasional skyhook, and is good for a laugh when someone from California asks you why you are taking "gardening tools" on a hike. The downside is an ice axe is dangerous and should not be carried by someone unschooled in its use. People have been killed accidentally by falling on the pick and Trotsky was murdered with one. If you are not an expert in its use and willing to accept the risk of getting hurt with it, leave it home.
|Disclaimer and Copyright notice||the Editors|