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Hackensack Fire Department and the rest of the Members of the NJ UASI Metro USAR Strike Team conducted their annual exercise during the week of April 28 at the Newark Fire Department Training Center. This year’s exercise centered on the scenario of workers being trapped after an explosion at a refinery. An impressive simulation was put together to present crews with challenging rescue evolutions. These included trench shoring, entry into numerous tunnels to access trapped maintenance workers, breaching concrete slabs with hydraulic cutting tools and power saws, shoring collapsed areas and injured worker removal. Members used some of the newest tools and search camera equipment on the market today
The Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) Metro USAR Strike Team is a combination of 10 fire departments and the Port Authority Police Emergency Service Unit that is intended to provide an initial response to major collapse incidents in the counties surrounding Newark and Jersey City. The Metro Strike Team can provide local fire departments with immediate access to Urban Search & Rescue resources for unique incidents until NJ TF-1 is able to respond. The agencies that make up the Metro Strike Team are Hackensack Fire Department, Jersey City Fire Department, Elizabeth Fire Department, Hoboken Fire Department, North Hudson Regional Fire & Rescue, Bayonne Fire Department, Paterson Fire Department, Newark Fire Department, Morristown Fire Department, Middlesex County and Millburn Fire Department.
Additional resources were provided by The Division of Fire Safety mobile command post, UMDNJ with EMS coverage and the Salvation Army canteen provided food for all members operating.