The probability that you and your family will survive a house fire depends as much on having a working smoke detector and an exit strategy, as on having a well-trained fire department.

The same is true for surviving a natural disaster such as a tornado, flooding, a terrorist attack, or unseen emergencies like our city dealt with in July 2018.

As a city, we must have the tools and plans in place to make it on our own, at least for a period of time, no matter where we are when disaster strikes. Just like having a working smoke detector, preparing for the unexpected makes sense.

Prevention, mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery are the five steps of the Emergency Management Plan.

The City of Sun Prairie continues to grow, with growth, risk escalates. Sun Prairie Public Safety is working diligently on bolstering its emergency management structure.

The city will be incorporating additional Inter-local agreements with our partners in Public Safety, local municipalities, Dane County Emergency Management, and Wisconsin Emergency Management. This includes training, exercises, access to Emergency Management staff and expertise, and improvement of facilities and resources.

Ensuring the quality of life for the community is an important responsibility of our government, and emergency management is part of that responsibility. The best way of achieving this is through education of our internal staff and external stake holders.

Currently our city is working on its preparedness. Actions increase a community’s ability to respond when a disaster transpires. Typical preparedness measures include developing mutual aid agreements and memorandums of understanding, training for both response personnel and city staff, conducting disaster exercises to reinforce training and test competences, and presenting all-hazards education campaigns.

Most recently, many executive and management staff personnel from the City have participated in the FEMA National IMS (NIMS) 300 & 400 All Hazard training classes provided by Dane County and Wisconsin Emergency Management.

NIMS 300 a 24 hour course, provides an in-depth focus on the NIMS Incident Command System (ICS) that includes the tools, practices, and procedures that are available in ICS to effectively manage emergency incidents or planned local events at a local Type 3 level.

NIMS 400 a 16 hour course, focuses on ICS for Command and General Staff in complex incidents. This advanced ICS 400 course focuses on senior personnel who are expected to perform in a management capacity in Area Command or Multiagency Coordination System, or as part of an Incident Management Team.

Congratulations to the following City of Sun Prairie staff members who have taken the time from their taxing schedules to help enhance the safety of our city, county, and state:

• City Administrator Aaron Oppenheimer;

• Finance Director Kristin Vander Koi;

• Public Works Director Adam Schleicher;

• Public Works Operations Manager Benjamin John;

• Engineering Director Tom Veith;

• Engineer Todd Anderson;

• Fleet Supervisor J.R. Brimmer;

• Police Chief Michael Steffes;

• Police Lieutenant Jamie Peterson;

• Police Lieutenant Ryan Cox;

• Police Lieutenant Ray Thomson;

• Police Sergeant Chris Pederson;

• Police Business Manager Michelle Garrison;

• Fire Captain Corey Quinn;

• Fire Admin Amy Klotz;

• Fire Lieutenant Ryan Welch; and

• Fire Lieutenant Greg Pavlik.

Other partners who participated in this training included: Madison Fire Department, Verona Fire Department, Truax Fire Department, Oregon Fire Department, Beloit Police Department, Pleasant Prairie Police Department, Rock County Sheriff’s Office, Wisconsin State Patrol, Wisconsin Department of Corrections, Wisconsin Emergency Management, Aspirus Divine Savior Hospital & Clinics, Dane County Emergency Management, Public Health Madison Dane County and the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.

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