City of Lincoln
Fire & Rescue Department
May 22, 2004, Lincoln Fire Chief Mike Spadt received the news that Lincoln had been spared from the late evening tornado, but the small community of Hallam Nebraska 25 miles south, had taken the brunt of the storm, and a direct hit by a tornado. From the Lincoln/Lancaster Emergency Operations Center, Spadt took action to help. The departments command staff was called in from off duty, along with 14 members of Lincoln Fire & Rescue. Responding in multiple vehicles, the department members went to assist the neighboring community.
On scene less than an hour after the tornado, assistant Chief John Huff and Deputy Chief Dan Wright went directly to the on scene command post to assist the local incident commander, Pat O’Brien. As part of the county wide mutual aid agreement, Hallam was beginning to receive multiple responders from across the area. Huff and Wright assisted O’Brien to establish a plan to coordinate the search and rescue efforts. 14 Rescuers from Lincoln, under the direction of Deputy Chief Ron Kennett were sent to assist in searching the area. In all 30 members of the department provided immediate assistance as part of the area wide response.
May 24, 2004 in coordination with the Hallam tornado incident commander and NEMA, Chief Spadt directed that members of the LF&R Urban Search & Rescue Task Force be activated to assist. 5 members of the Task Force were deployed including 3 structures specialist. The structures specialist, are certified engineers specially trained to determine the relative safety of a building damaged by force of nature or man.
Lincoln Fire & Rescue will continue to assist the village of Hallam and its residents as long as requested by their leadership.
All Responders are to be commended for their efforts in this most tragic event.
Links to others sites articles/pictures:
Storm Trackers Images (Awesome & Lots of Pics!!)