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Press Releases / 2005 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 22, 2005

STATEMENT FROM CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT PETER E. HAYDEN ON CIMS

In the last three years, the New York City Fire Department has dramatically increased training and obtained new equipment and technology to improve our preparedness in responding to potential terrorist attacks. Without question, the FDNY is better prepared than we were three years ago.

The Fire Department has vastly improved communications capabilities, including interoperability with other agencies and the ability to receive radio communications and live video feeds from police helicopters; increased the number of firefighters, EMT's and paramedics with specialized Hazardous Materials training from 500 to more than 2,000; provided firefighters with air masks that protect them from chemical and biological agents; and every fire unit carries radiological detection equipment.

During the last two years, during negotiations over protocols for the new Citywide Incident Management System (CIMS), we argued strongly for unified command at terrorist incidents involving hazardous materials, an area in which the Fire Department has the greatest expertise.

The Fire Department continues to have a critical role in protecting life and property in this city from all types of threats, including terrorist attacks and hazardous materials releases. It's what we've always done and it's what we'll continue to do. We will ensure that the guidelines established in the new CIMS protocol will be enforced and will protect the safety of all New Yorkers.

Contact: Francis X. Gribbon (FDNY) (718) 999-2056

http://www.nyc.gov/fdny

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