It is located on the campus of South Carolina State Fire in Columbia, SC as part of the Division of Fire and Life Safety under Labor, Licensing, and Regulation (LRR).
The S.C. Emergency Response Task Force continues to provide initial and long-term responses to natural and man-made disasters. The program’s primary focus is to provide immediate resources to local and regional fire service agencies. We continue into our eighth successful year of partnering with the S.C. National Guard to offer a statewide helicopter rescue program. This asset is one of few in the country, and is responsible for rescuing 26 people during the North American Storm Complex of October 2015.
In October 2015, South Carolina was faced with a “1,000 year” flooding event. Our state had not seen a natural disaster of this magnitude since Hurricane Hugo in 1989. During the course of nine days, 49 members of South Carolina Task Force 1 participated in numerous rescue and reconnaissance missions.
Per S.C. Code of Laws (23-49-10), this statewide mutual aid assistance agreement can be utilized by the state’s 46 counties. The system allows for firefighting and rescue resources to be effectively and efficiently moved throughout the state to assist during a local, regional, and statewide disasters or emergencies.
In November 2015, several long-time members of the team departed after many years of valuable service. The State of South Carolina is thankful for their service, and legacy, as the program continues to refocus and make plans for future expansion and growth. In addition to the partnerships mentioned above, fire service recruiting continued, including the annual recruiting drive at the 2016 Fire Rescue Conference.
In FY 2016, new partnerships were fostered to further grow the Task Force. Relationships were made with the South Carolina State Guard and local agencies in order to increase capacity and membership.
The Task Force continued to train in each quarter of FY 2016. To focus on rescue and team basics, Task Force leaders launched a “Core Competency” initiative. More than 1,800 man hours were spent on FY 2016 team training exercises. An additional 600 man hours were spent attending scheduled events and meetings.
(803)896-9870 • Ken.Kerber@llr.sc.gov
(803)896-5483 • Shon.Hamilton@llr.sc.gov
(803)896-5485 • Mark.Scanlan@llr.sc.gov