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Wednesday, May 10, 2006

JCSO Air Support Unit

Jefferson County Sheriff's Office

The Jefferson County Sheriff's Office has announced the creation of a new Air Support Unit which will be comprised of 2 OH-58C helos and over 25 personnel.

The two helos, STAR 1 & STAR 2, will be based at the Bessemer Airport.

Congratulations to JCSO for this major step forward in crime fighting. A special thank you to Sgt. Randy Christian for providing the following information and pictures.

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With the help/support of US Senator Jeff Sessions, two non-flyable OH-58C helicopters were obtained from Ft. Rucker through the Department of Defense 1033 excess property to law enforcement agencies with special emphasis given to counter-drug and counter-terrorism.

The Primary Mission of the Air Support Unit:

To enhance countywide officer and public safety by providing effective aerial support to Jefferson County law enforcement agencies and to enhance the effectiveness of federal, state and local law enforcement units by providing airborne surveillance, drug eradication, observation and reporting of criminal activity.

The Secondary Mission of the Air Support Unit:

To save lives and mitigate suffering by providing search and rescue activities; to fill a rescue/extraction aircraft role in the County's Emergency Medical System; and to provide aerial support for Homeland Security efforts in Jefferson County.

Air Support Unit Equipment:

2 - OH-58C Helicopters ( STAR 1 & STAR 2 )
Military Observation Jet Turbine Helicopters
Max Capacity of 4 people, 2 Flight Crew and 2 Passengers

Technical Information:

Size: Length 40'8" Width 7'3" Height 12'6"
Performance: 120 Knots, 2.5 hour endurance
Serial Number (C/N): 72-21176

Specialty Equipment:

SX-5 Starburst Illumination "Nite Sun" spotlight
Forward Looking Infrared Radar (FLIR) with object heat detection
Bell OH-58 High Skid landing gear
800 MHz Digital Motorola Interoperable Radio System
Garmen 296 Global Positioning System (GPS)
Aviator's Night Vision Goggles
Chopper Spotter ground handling equipment


N176JC prior to restoration...




Star 1 at Pemco for restoration...




The new JCSO Star 1...



















Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Airport Disaster Drill

Birmingham Airport Authority

Congratulations to all who participated in the 2006 Airport Disaster Drill at the Birmingham International Airport last Saturday! I was completely impressed with how well all the agencies communicated and cooperated. Birmingham is very lucky to have such a well oiled system in place.


From CBS 42:

Birmingham International Airport's Runway 18/36 was a chilling sight over the weekend. Every three years, the FAA requires major airports to hold a full-scale disaster drill to ensure top security and safety. On Saturday, Birmingham's emergency response units took their turn in the massive training operation.

A large commercial airplane has crashed on the runway. Pieces of the plane flew off and damaged a smaller aircraft and a fuel truck, causing a massive fire. Almost every one of the 120 passengers is injured, several are already dead, and everyone is panicking. Victims suffered from gash wounds, severe burns, and one boy even had embedded glass in his face.

Luckily, this was just a drill, but airport authorities say they presented every chaotic and challenging aspect possible to fully prepare ground crews for any situation.

"It will make us a more secure airport, it will make our response time better and make coordination of such an event more effective," Birmingham Airport Spokeswoman Patty Howell said. "It's good we have as many agencies here as we do."

Read the entire CBS 42 story.


Dave911.com Disaster Drill Video

The 117th ANG provided a KC-135 for the drill...




Tail #38007...




BREMSS Director arriving on-scene...




BREMSS provided two bus loads of patients for the drill...




Professional pyrotechnicians were brought in to add to the effect...




Birmingham Airport Authority's PIO being interviewed by the local media prior to the start of the drill...




Professional pyrotechnician igniting the troughs of Diesel fuel...




Simulated fuel truck fire...




Smoke machines...




The fire is going good. Redbird and Pemco Units have been dispatched...







Pemco 186 arrives at the fuel tanker fire...




Pemco 187 arrives at the fuel tanker fire...




Pemco Firefighter...




Pemco 186 at the fuel tanker fire...




Pemco 185 arrives at the GA aircraft fire...




Redbird 27 arrives with USAF Redbird 22, 24 and 26 at the simulated passenger plane crash...




Command is established on the south end of 18/36...




Redbird 27...







Redbird 27 pulls a line for the simulated passenger aircraft...




Pemco prepares to rescue the driver of the fuel truck...




The driver of the fuel truck has been removed...




Birmingham Police Department arrives...




Birmingham Police officers cordon off the area...




Pemco LT assessing the scene...




Pemco Firefighters...




Birmingham Police Command Center...




Birmingham Police Command Center and SWAT Command Center arrive at the command post...




Pemco with simulated body at GA aircraft...







Pemco Fire Chief...




Pemco 187...




Birmingham Fire & Rescue establishes triage area...




Patients are brought to the triage...




Fuel tanker truck driver is transported to the triage area...













12's Decon arrives at the fuel spill...




Triage area continues to receive patients...




Redbird 27...




Engine 22 arrives at triage...







Redbird 27 Firefighter...




Pemco units...




Pemco Firefighter...




Pemco 185...




Pemco 185...




Pemco 185...




Pemco 187...




Pemco Firefighter...




Salvation Army on-scene...




USAF Redbird 22 & 24...




USAF Redbird 22...




USAF Redbird 24...




USAF Redbird 26...




Drill comes to a conclusion...