Isanti Firefighter assists with Hurricane Sandy

Isanti Assistant Fire Chief Al Jankovich recently returned from a deployment to Albany, N.Y. where he assisted in the New York State Office of Emergency Management to assist with the devastating Hurricane Sandy.

Isanti Assistant Fire Chief Al Jankovich
Isanti Assistant Fire Chief Al Jankovich

Assistant Chief Jankovich was deployed as a member of an All Hazards Incident Management Team (AHIMT), supporting an Emergency Management Assistant Compact Team (EMAC) request made by the State of New York.

EMAC is state to state mutual aid, much like local fire departments helping each other. In this instance, Minnesota is helping New York. Minnesota sent seven separate teams to the New York State OEM since the hurricane’s occurrence on Oct. 29. Assistant Chiefs team was the last of the State’s requests, before transitioning local control back into the roles that were being maintained by local staff.

Minnesota’s teams are filled by several different roles from across the State. Chief Jankovich’s team included personnel from fire, emergency management and public health.

Depending on the needs of the EMAC deployment, members are pulled from different areas of expertise to best fulfill the requirement. This method has proven to be extremely effective for Minnesota. The state of New York was very appreciative of the accomplishments made while being assisted by the seven different teams.

Isanti Firefighters have been providing assistance for several years at numerous different disasters.

Isanti Fire District has several Firefighters on the Minnesota F.A.S.T. Team (Fire Chief Assistant and Support Team) and AHIMT Team.

Over the years, these Firefighters have been deployed to the Yellowstone National Park Wild Land Fire, St. Peter Tornado,  a chlorine rail car release in International Falls, a benzene chemical rail car spill in Duluth, Pagami Creek Wild Land Fire in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area, Red River Valley Floods in Fargo, N.D and Moorhead, Minn., Zumbro River floods in Owatonna and Zumbrota Minn., Northeast Minnesota Floods in Moose Lake, Verso Paper Mill Fire in Sartell, and several other Minnesota and Wisconsin deployments to help fire departments who have had to deal with the unfortunate death of an active firefighter.

It is an honor to have your skills requested to assist with the efforts of an emergency situation or natural disaster of this magnitude. Isanti’s Firefighters have always met the challenge, and will continue to provide aid whenever requested, be it our neighbors in Isanti County or anywhere in the United States.