NewsBrowse the latest news from the Agency.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 30, 2016
State Officials Remind Citizens to Follow State Laws, Practice Safety When Using Fireworks
Harrisburg, PA – With the fourth of July holiday fast approaching, all Pennsylvanians are being reminded to stay safe and follow state law when enjoying fireworks displays as a part of their celebrations.
“Every year, what should be a time to honor America with family and friends turns tragic somewhere,” said State Fire Commissioner Tim Solobay. “Following common-sense safety guidelines can prevent these tragedies and help you create lasting happy memories.”
Pennsylvania law allows consumers to use only small “novelty” fireworks, such as sparklers and trick noise makers. These fireworks can be sold by retail establishments with valid permits.
“With the upcoming holiday weekend, families and friends will come together for cookouts, picnics or even weekend trips,” said Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding. “As a part of these festivities, there may be fireworks on display. If you are planning to use fireworks as a part of your events, either this weekend or for future activities, please be sure to purchase those fireworks from licensed dealers within the commonwealth.”
All display fireworks that are shot into the air and burst into a large, colorful display, like those seen at organized celebrations and sporting events, are prohibited for use by consumers.
Solobay shared the following safety tips from the National Council on Fireworks Safety:
- Fireworks should only be used outdoors, away from structures, automobiles, etc.
- Always have water handy.
- Use fireworks only as intended. Read and follow all directions provided by the manufacturer.
- Never attempt to relight a “dud” firework. Wait 20 minutes and then soak it in a bucket of water prior to disposal.
- Use common sense. Anyone igniting fireworks should wear safety glasses, and spectators should stay a safe distance away.
- Alcohol and fireworks do not mix.
- Never use homemade fireworks or illegal explosives – illegal fireworks should be reported to local law enforcement.
- Only persons over the age of 12 should be allowed to handle sparklers of any type. Sparklers should only be used under close adult supervision.
- Always remain standing and at least six feet from others while using sparklers.
- Always wear closed-toe shoes when using sparklers.
- Never hand a lighted sparkler to another person.
- Never hold or light more than one sparkler at a time.
- Sparkler wires and sticks remain hot long after the flame has gone out. Be sure to drop the spent sparkler directly into a bucket of water.
Officials added that there are a number of safe, fun ways to celebrate the holidays with loved ones without fireworks, such as: using glow sticks; red, white and blue bubbles; or silly string.
Ruth A. Miller, OSFC: 717-651-2009
Brandi Hunter-Davenport, Agriculture: 717-787-5085
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 20, 2016
For Information Contact:
SPRINGTIME ALERT – DO NOT DISTURB YOUNG WILDLIFE
Whether in their backyards or high on a mountain, it’s almost certain Pennsylvanians will encounter young wildlife this time of year.
While some young animals might appear to be abandoned, usually they are not. It’s likely their mothers are watching over them from somewhere nearby.
So when encountering young deer, birds, raccoons or other young wildlife, the best thing people can do is leave the animals alone.
“Most people want to do what they can to help wildlife, and when they see a young animal that appears to be abandoned, they want to intervene,” said Wayne Laroche, the Game Commission wildlife management director. “What they don’t realize is that, in all likelihood, they’re doing more harm than good.
“Those young animals probably aren’t abandoned at all, meaning that anyone stepping in to try to help not only is taking that youngster away from its mother, but also destroying its chances to grow up as it was intended,” he said.
Adult animals often leave their young while they forage for food, but they don’t go far and they do return. Wildlife also often relies on a natural defensive tactic called the “hider strategy,” where young animals will remain motionless and “hide” in surrounding cover while adults draw the attention of potential predators or other intruders away from their young.
Deer employ this strategy, and fawns sometimes are assumed to be abandoned when, in fact, their mothers are nearby.
The Game Commission urges Pennsylvanians to resist the urge to interfere with young wildlife or remove any wild animal from its natural setting.
Such contact can be harmful to both people and wildlife. Wild animals can lose their natural fear of humans, making it difficult, even impossible, for them to ever again live normally in the wild. And anytime wildlife is handled, there’s always a risk people could contract diseases or parasites such as fleas, ticks and lice.
Wildlife that becomes habituated to humans also can pose a public-safety risk. A few years ago, a yearling, six-point buck attacked and severely injured two people. The investigation into the incident revealed that a neighboring family had illegally taken the deer into their home and fed it as a fawn, and they continued to feed the deer right up until the time of the attack.
It is illegal to take or possess wildlife from the wild. Under state law, the penalty for such a violation is a fine of up to $1,500 per animal.
Under no circumstances will anyone who illegally takes wildlife into captivity be allowed to keep that animal, and under a working agreement with state health officials, any “high risk” rabies vector species confiscated after human contact must be euthanized and tested; it cannot be returned to the wild because the risk of spreading disease is too high.
Animals infected with rabies might not show obvious symptoms, but still might be able to transmit the disease. Though any mammal might carry rabies, the rabies vector species identified in the agreement are: skunks, raccoons, foxes, bats, coyotes and groundhogs.
People can get rabies from the saliva of a rabid animal if they are bitten or scratched, or if the saliva gets into the person’s eyes, mouth or a fresh wound.
Only wildlife rehabilitators, who are licensed by the Game Commission, are permitted to care for injured or orphaned wildlife for the purposes of eventual release back into the wild. For those who find wildlife that truly is in need of assistance, a listing of licensed wildlife rehabilitators can be found on the Pennsylvania Association of Wildlife Rehabilitators website, www.pawr.com.
If you are unable to identify a wildlife rehabilitator in your area, contact the Game Commission region office that serves the county in which the animal is found so that you can be referred to the appropriate licensed wildlife rehabilitator. Region office contact information can be found through the “Connect with Us” tab on the agency’s website, www.pgc.pa.gov.
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Household Hazardous Waste Events
May 20 & October 14, 2017, 8:30-2:00
Northampton Community College, Main Campus, Bethlehem Township, PA
Use Green Pond Rd entrance only
Northampton County residents ONLY
Bring Photo ID or recent utility bill to verify residency
No cost, except for tires.
No TVs or other electronics accepted
HOUSEHOLD HAZARDOUS WASTE ACCEPTED
Adhesives, Aerosols, Antifreeze, Automotive fluids & cleaners,
Batteries (all types), Compressed gas, Fluorescent light bulbs, Flammables/combustibles, Fire extinguishers,
Herbicides/pesticides, Household cleaners, Mercury-containing products, Motor oil/filters,
Oil-based paint & stain, Old gasoline/oil mixtures,
Pool chemicals, Propane cylinders, Thermometers, Thermostats
Non-hazardous materials will not be accepted
No latex paint or stains
No smoke detectors/radioactives
No medical wastes
Accepted Scrap Metals
Recycling of residential scrap, that is primarily metal, including lawn furniture, yard equipment (oil, gas & batteries removed),
major metal appliances (washer, dryers, stoves), air conditioners and dehumidifiers (refrigerant does not require removal, it will be recycled), etc.
No rims/wheels accepted (see scrap metal, above)
No farm, bicycle, mini-bike, motorcycle, golf-cart,
backhoe, etc. tires will be accepted.
This course is designed to teach the instructional methodology to potential and existing instructors needed to deliver the following program. This program was developed to provide the necessary resources to address trailer operations and safety for Emergency Services Organization (ESO). Trailers have been around for years, however, it is the increasing use of them in the emergency services setting that is new. Frequently, equipment is needed that cannot be carried on traditional vehicles or the equipment is needed sporadically. This equipment could be for day-to-day operations or for special operations. Trailers have become a mechanism to transport this equipment, however, many departments lack the expertise or training to hook up or move a trailer safely. As the use of trailers increases it becomes imperative to educate proactively to avoid unnecessary loss of life and property.
September 14, 2016
6:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Northampton Emergency Management
100 Gracedale Avenue Nazareth, PA 18064
Pre-registration required! Please register by September 1, 2016
1st Registration Free
Additional Registrations $60 each
1st Registration $299
Additional Registrations $99 each
How to Register: Submit completed Registration Form and payment to: VFIS, 183 Leader Heights Rd., P.O. Box 2726, York, PA 17405
Register on-line at www.vfis.com or Email form to firstname.lastname@example.org Fax to (717) 747-7028
Transportation Rail Incident Preparedness and Response: “Flammable Liquid Unit Trains” Training Program
The Pennsylvania State Fire Academy is offering this 8-hour class utilizing curriculum developed by numerous agencies working with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA). This course provides critical information on best practices related to rail incidents involving unit trains hauling Hazard Class 3 flammable liquids such as Petroleum crude oil and ethanol.
A key component of this class is to learn from past experiences and to leverage the expertise of public safety agencies, rail carriers, and industry subject matter experts in order to prepare first responders to safely manage unit train rail incidents involving commodities such as crude oil and ethanol. This exciting program will be offered locally on:
Friday, April 22, 2016 at 8:00 a.m. or Saturday, April 23, 2016 at 8:00 a.m.
Northampton County EMA
100 Gracedale Avenue
Nazareth, PA 18064
To register, please complete an application and email to email@example.com or mail it to Jerry Bimle at the PA State Fire Academy. Register early!
Deadline is noon on April 1, 2016.
PRE-REGISTRATION IS MANDATORY, NO WALK-INS WILL BE PERMITTED!
NO LATE OR FAXED ENROLLMENTS WILL BE ACCEPTED!
For Additional info or applications you can contact :
Michael Rampulla at 610-746-3194 ext.3229 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
PA State Fire Academy
1150 Riverside Drive
Lewistown, Pa 17044
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 22, 2016
Governor Wolf Requests Federal Disaster Assistance for January Snowstorm
Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf has requested President Barack Obama to declare a major disaster in Pennsylvania, in order to provide financial reimbursement to municipalities in 31 counties for costs associated with the historic snowstorm that impacted the state January 22-23.
“Our numbers so far show that municipal, county and state agencies spent more than $55 million to respond to this storm,” said Governor Wolf. “In many places, it wiped out an entire year’s budget for snow response and removal, and winter isn’t over yet.”
The Governor’s letter represents an initial request for federal assistance, and the commonwealth will be able to request assistance for additional counties if data shows they meet the federal snow criteria.
In order to qualify for federal public assistance, counties must meet specific federal criteria:
· a record or near-record snowfall event must occur within the county;
· the costs to the county and municipalities for snow removal operations during a continuous 48-hour period and any other costs for emergency protective measures must exceed the county per capita threshold of $3.56; and
· the total costs of all counties meeting both criteria must exceed the state threshold of $17.9 million.
In the weeks since the storm, municipal and county applicants have complied data on costs associated with storm response. Eligible expenses include, but are not limited to, costs associated with paying overtime, equipment rentals, materials, search and rescue operations, and opening and operating shelters. That data was then relayed to the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency, which tracked and totaled the costs to present to the Governor.
If the Governor’s request is approved, applicants can be reimbursed up to 75% of the costs incurred on eligible expenses.
The counties that met both record or near record snowfall totals and county costs are: Adams, Bedford, Berks, Blair, Bucks, Chester, Cumberland, Dauphin, Fayette, Franklin, Fulton, Huntingdon, Juniata, Lancaster, Lebanon, Lehigh, Mifflin, Montgomery, Northampton, Perry, Philadelphia, Schuylkill, Somerset, Snyder, Westmoreland, and York.
The Governor’s request also includes the following counties that met their record or near record snowfall totals, but have not yet met their county costs: Cambria, Columbia, Montour, Northumberland, and Union. PEMA staff continues to gather data from those counties in an effort to provide them financial assistance should the Governor’s request be approved by the federal government.
The overall estimated total costs that are associated with this request are $55,468,967, which exceeds the state public assistance threshold of $17,910,354. It is important to note that total costs may fluctuate slightly as applications for assistance are reviewed at both the state and federal levels.
It is not known when the President will make a decision to grant or deny disaster assistance.
MEDIA CONTACT: Jeff Sheridan – 717-783-1116
Ruth Miller – PEMA: 717-651-2009; email@example.com
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