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LDAF completes advanced emergency response training

January 22, 2010

         The Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry’s (LDAF) all-hazard incident management team recently completed advanced training in the federal Incident Command System (ICS) and is one of the most highly-trained emergency response teams among state agencies, Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M. said.
“Our command and general staff completed the 430-level class in Operations Section Chief training jointly with United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) personnel from Louisiana, Oklahoma and Mississippi. A representative from the Mississippi Board of Animal Health also participated in the training that took place in early January,” Strain said. “Our department is compliant with National Incident Management Systems (NIMS) training requirements.” 
Management of emergencies, or incidents, is based on NIMS principals that help emergency responders organize to contain and control the impact of a disaster, which can be as large as a hurricane or as small as a highway chemical spill.
The three-day class was conducted by John Roberts and Mark Goeller of Oklahoma. The training was held at LDAF headquarters in Baton Rouge.
Roberts was part of the emergency response team that dealt with the World Trade Center terrorist attack on September 11, 2001. Roberts also worked with emergency operations after Hurricane Katrina struck Louisiana in 2005.
Roberts is accredited by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and USDA to teach advanced emergency response training.
Goeller served on the Columbia Shuttle recovery operations and hurricanes Ivan and Rita emergency response teams. Goeller is also fully certified to train emergency management teams.
            Strain said the training was paid for by the State Homeland Security Program grant funds.
The LDAF all-hazard incident management team has completed ICS course levels 100, 200, 700 and 800, which are Internet based. The 300 and 400 level courses are taught in the classroom. Roberts also conducted the LDAF’s 300 level class in August 2009, Strain said.
“I’m proud of the level of commitment the LDAF staff has displayed in undertaking this higher training and responsibility,” Strain said. “I believe that when the time comes to respond to a crisis, the LDAF will be there to protect the agricultural interests of Louisiana.

            Visit the FEMA Independent Study Program for more information about the emergency incident management systems at