Police and Fire Team
In between search missions members are busy – sometimes very busy – with in-town calls. A report of a major incident is monitored or sent out by page from dispatch. Members of the Fire Team are paged, or called, and respond to the scene. The Patrol has auto-aid agreements in place with Littleton Fire Rescue, South Metro Fire Rescue, and Englewood Fire Department.
On the scene of a structure fire, members control traffic, provide security around the fire equipment, keep spectators back, change SCBA air bottles, supply equipment needed by the firefighters, and serve as support personnel. On many fires, they handle hoses, assist with clean-up after the fire, and restore equipment to the apparatus.
In the case of a major accident, members respond and perform duties needed by fire/rescue and law enforcement personnel. They provide emergency medical care, support extrication operations, direct traffic, close streets, and work to ensure the safety of those on-scene. They remain at the scene until the investigation is finished and the vehicles are removed to open the road.
Members may sign up to ride with local law enforcement and fire agencies, and they assist on-duty personnel to the extent of their training.
A tedious, but important, Patrol function is providing security for law enforcement or fire agencies at the scene of a homicide or a major fire. After the primary response or after the fire is out, it often is some time before the investigation is completed. By providing security at the site the members enable the investigators to do a more effective job without tying up regular officers who may be needed elsewhere.
It is critical that the “chain of evidence” be preserved. Members set up a perimeter around the site and make sure no unauthorized personnel enter the area. They usually work out of the Arapahoe County Mobile Command Post or Patrol vehicles. Security work is done in shifts with no one leaving until their relief arrives. The work lasts, generally, for 12 to 24 hours but can be for extended periods of time. For example, a fire south of Littleton required a security detail for over 12 days!