Since there are issues that to be discussed because essential things like food and fuel are taking unnecessarily long times to arrive.
Working as a FDUL on an IMT I can tell you that national caterers have all been committed this season and there have been some very creative measures being used to try and feed folks. The caterers are also having trouble procuring the groceries and other items needed to do they’re job as well. Things are not like they were in the past.
I do not want to argue or complicate the issues that have been brought up, but at the end of the day, IMT’s have to focus on Service and Support of the boots on the ground.
If the National Catering system contracts are not able to support the incidents then changes/adjustments need to be made.
Much has been said about Cal Fire MKU’s sitting and available for deployment. Why wouldn’t the IMT make the request to support the field personnel?
Firefighter health/safety/well-being should be the number 1 priority.
I have some knowledge of the CalFire MKUs, they are available and staffed. Groceries are a bit tough to get, so meal options can be a bit thin, but at least the guys would eat.
Honestly, wait until this equipment starts breaking and parts are UTF’d.
Corona virus has impacted the world and some of that is just now coming to a head. Food, fuel, auto parts, hose, brass, and tires are all in short supply.
I have had discussions and tried to find work around to LOGS issues. They are real.and unique to 2021, California & Covid-19.
California has some screwed up laws. I know for a fact because of the laws around “Cage Free” Chicken & Eggs have been available in Reno. But because of CALIFORNIA LAW the vendor was not allowed to sell to the incidents for fear of fines in the thousands of dollars per unit. Several days on the different state & federal fires there were no eggs available for Breakfast. So this problem is real.
There is also a chronic shortage of fuel suppliers. Regulations(CARB) the ever changing nature of California’s power supply(Power Safety Shut Offs) has changed the way fuel companies deliver fuel. I have had discussions with several fuel suppliers who state “Fire work doesn’t pay enough to not service my daily customer’s who will be short fuel because we have a truck(s) committed to a fire assignment” I was also told a National Buying team UTF’d an order because they didn’t want to write an EERA because all the VIPR suppliers were unavailable. On several fires the CNG has been the supplier of last resort. This causes additional problems as GSUL, LOGS, & BUYR have to 1st get the CNG fuel trucks. Then order fuel for delivery. This took about 24hr.
This is a SIGNIFICANT challenge for people with “Local knowledge” let alone a IMT from The SE US. Couple that with the shortage ACROSS THE BOARD of ALL TYPES of resources. Is anyone surprised?
One take away from the 2021 Season will be the challenges faced in all area’s of suppression. From Staffing, Logistics, Food, & Fuel. This year in California is a little over half(Acres) that burned in 2020. Yet the shortages are just as bad, if not worse.
I’m here to tell you, 2022 won’t be any easier unless Mother Nature takes her Midol and calms TF down.
We need to go back to the basics, and as Gunny Sargent Thomas Highway once said.
LEARN TO IMPROVISE, ADAPT, AND OVERCOME!
There is a lot of disscusion about CF getting involved on the KNP fire. Do not be surprised if a CF team is not on the fire by Monday or Tuesday.
As someone on the food contracting side I can tell you this is by far the worst I’ve ever seen the supply chain by a long shot. When trying to place orders a large majority of items are unavailable from the manufacturers. For instance, I am lucky if I can get roast beef or something besides ham/turkey for lunches once every two weeks. The product just isn’t there especially for the numbers on the mega fires.
As someone mentioned before the regulations on eggs has been a huge problem. I’ve had people complain about getting scrambled eggs every day or have the same type of protein two nights in a row. Honestly, I know and appreciate all the guys out on the line killing themselves to do what they do. Rarely is it a hand crew or engine guy complaining. Seems like some of the older generation have just come to expect to tell everyone jump and we can say how high. It’s just not the case any more. Add into everything a hurricane and National plastic shortage for bottles I think the LOGS teams are doing a hell of a job.
MKU’s for cal Fire have a place and can do some stuff really well. At the end of the day there is a difference in being able to just order another crew for staffing vs private contractors who have to keep their people happy and motivated to work what is a very challenging situation. If I had 40 inmates to work my kitchen it would be a lot easier for sure.
good discussion people.
The California tax payers have spent millions in the last 2 years on new Cal Fire state of the art MKU’s and at least two of the three new ones are sitting with staff waiting for a call. And having just left the Dixie fire I can tell you that the Salt Creek MKU served the best food I have ever had on a fire in my career regardless of shortages and there was 6k personnel on that fire.
A team unable to feed the troops?
Provide a verified source about team food resource issues otherwise it is hearsay. I know a lot meals have been provided the community.
We’ve been eating MRE’s for 4 days as no meals have been provided. Lunches are now starting to be circulated. One small sandwich, small bag chips, two tootsie rolls.
This is NOT hear say- I’ve personally been involved with helping to provide and prepare meals. Bbq’d 150 pounds of tri tip on Thursday night and served over 300 meals. Yesterday my wife and a few other community members baked 400 muffins and over 300 cookies. 33 years of service with Cal Fire and I’ve NEVER witnessed such poor logistical support. As of last night there was no fuel trucks, supply, ice, lunches or anything else you would find to support a fire that’s been burning for well over a week and is now 10,000 plus acres.
This has been an ongoing issue all summer. Many of the caterer’s are unable to get workers so they are not available. Much like the same problem many restaurants are having getting staff. Also a shortage of truck drivers to deliver water, ice, food, etc. Early on during the Monument Fire because we couldn’t take care of the troops we could not order crews, engines, etc. we tapped out the capacity of local vendors and MKU’s were not available because no inmates available . I’m sure the Team is trying their best to take care of the folks, but the well seems to be dry.
To be fair to the SA team, this is the start of day 2. It might have been the handoff they received more than anything.
Lets hope so!
This is concerning. A Type 1 IMT has two primary responsibilities. Obviously Command and Control under the directives established by the agency administrator and Service/Support of the boots on the ground.
Without meeting the needs of the Firefighters, an IMT will fail on their entire containment efforts.
Hope this is not the case.
I can speak first hand that every camp that has an MKU has plenty of inmates and are ready to roll. There is a shortage of Inmate firefighters but the MKU does not use firefighting Inmates. I can tell you they are ready to go
I believe MKUs should get all the contracts the food, snacks, and drinks are better. That morale boost alone makes the men happier feed em good and they’ll work hard.
Why can’t we just request to be self sufficient and claim per diem, that way dietary needs can be met. Won’t work in every circumstance or for every module but I sure would like that option. You’d also be supporting local business.