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News & Press: Breaking News

Statewide Mutual Aid Announcement

Friday, June 5, 2020  
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As we face increased violence across the state, continuing COVID-19 concerns, and wildfire season, now more than ever we need to rely on each other to ensure we can provide the necessary services to our communities.  When we consider automatic, mutual, county, and/or statewide aid as it relates to protests & riots, do not wait until the event(s) unfold before calling for assistance.  The Statewide Mutual Aid system is designed for these types of situations. We understand that we face additional challenges as fire departments/districts because we are not necessarily briefed by our law enforcement partners until late in the process.  However, because we are a system of protocols, it is always beneficial to look at the intelligence and pre-stage whenever possible.

Below are some primers to consider as we continue to experience nightly protests across the state, many of which have turned violent.  This is not limited to our large urban areas as threats to suburban areas outside of Maricopa and Pima County have been made.

  • If there is a credible threat that could tax the department/district resources beyond capacity, call for aid as early as possible and have it staged.
  • Identify what type of aid is needed: e.g. backfill stations, front line response, etc.
  • Identify what type of PPE is needed or required: e.g. EMS, tactical, technical, etc.
  • Determine what specialized resources are needed that is not available in the region.
  • Reach out, engage, and build the relationship with local law enforcement.

The process for the activation of the Statewide Mutual Aid system is simple regardless of your need.  Notify your local dispatch center when working an incident requiring additional resources – even in the planning phases.  The local dispatch center will mobilize resources from within the county and contact the Zone Dispatch Center who will be responsible for coordinating resources within the zone to effectively mitigate the incident.  If the incident is larger than available resources can accommodate within the zone or specialty resources are needed, the Zone Dispatch Center will activate the Arizona Fire Service Mutual Aid Plan and request additional resources from adjacent zone dispatch center(s).

When the need to request activation of Fire Service Mutual Aid resources beyond the scope of established local mutual aid or the need for specialized resources, it is the Incident Commanders responsibility to contact the local dispatch center and state the request for resources including number and type.

The local dispatch center will identify and request the resources utilizing the processes established within the mutual aid plan.  The local dispatch center will notify the Incident Commander of the resources available, location of the needed resources, and the estimated time of arrival.

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