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New mobile command center will help LDAF in emergencies

October 23, 2008

Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M., said the new Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry mobile command center will greatly enhance the department’s ability to manage or coordinate emergency responses to forest fires and hurricanes.

“This is a tremendous asset,” Strain said. “We’ll be able to establish a mobile incident command post at the site of any critical emergency.”
The $280,000 mobile command center was purchased with funds from a United States Forest Service grant. The vehicle was delivered on October 20.
The 36-foot vehicle was manufactured by Farber Specialty Vehicles of Columbus, Ohio. The specialty vehicle was built on a Ford chassis and is powered by a Ford V-10 362 horsepower engine.
Features include a complete satellite linkup system that will enable connection to the Internet, satellite phones, cellular phone systems, televisions, fax machines, scanners, printers and copy machines.
“It is basically an office on wheels that can keep us connected in the field to our headquarters in Baton Rouge,” Strain said. “Forest fires are often in remote locations and having a reliable communications link is vital.”
A 12.5KW ultra-quiet onboard gasoline generator powers all of the command center’s electronic communication components.
The vehicle will be on display Friday and Saturday at the State Fair of Louisiana in Shreveport.
Photographs of the new mobile command center can be viewed at Photo Releases.