This year’s Emergency Services Show returns to Hall 5 at the NEC, Birmingham from 20 to 21 September with a strong focus on learning from past incidents and collaborating to protect the public and save lives. Attracting over 6,500 visitors and 400 exhibitors, The Emergency Services Show 2017 provides a unique opportunity to network and exchange ideas across the resilience, emergency planning and emergency services community, share best practice as well as to see and handle the latest technology and equipment.

As recent terrorist incidents in the UK have demonstrated, collaboration is key to co-ordinating effective response and recovery. “We continue to face challenging and difficult times and these events continue to highlight importance of collaboration, partnership working and using digital tools to be able to respond quickly, says Luana Avagliano, Head of Resilience Direct, UK Cabinet Office who will be presenting a seminar on the subject at The Emergency Services Show. Resilience Direct is a key partner of the show, along with JESIP and the National Operational Guidance Programme.

Visitors can also find out more on the citizenAID stand in The Collaboration Zone at the show

Seminars on responding to incidents and attacks

Terrorism is one of the key topics in the Lessons Learnt Theatre (sponsored by UCLan PROTECT), where emergency services and partner agencies will share their experiences of responding to real incidents. North West Ambulance Service for example will present a session on the Manchester Arena terrorist incident which it attended. Professor Sir Keith Porter, Professor of Clinical Traumatology, University of Birmingham will speak about the role of citizenAID in the light of recent terrorist attacks in London (Westminster, London Bridge and Finsbury Park Mosque). When there is a shooting, stabbing or bomb explosion the initial priority is public safety. This can delay the time before the emergency services are able to reach the injured. citizenAID enables the general public to be effective in these situations before the emergency services are available to provide professional medical support. It is designed to guide the public to react safely, to pass effective messages to the emergency services, to prioritise the injured and to give life-saving first aid. Visitors can also find out more on the citizenAID stand in The Collaboration Zone at the show.

Response teams and operations

CBRN experts will also be speaking in the Lessons Learnt seminar theatre. Mark Godsman, Fire and Rescue Service Team, National CBRN Centre will present a session on CBRN Initial Operational Response. In the early stages of a suspected CBRN incident, the first 15 minutes are vital for reducing harm to casualties. He will explain what this means for control rooms and frontline responders. Chief Inspector Richard Butterworth, Deputy Head, National CBRN Centre will then talk about the multi-agency response, examining how this looks to responders on the ground and what specialist resources can be expected.

"As we’ve seen from Manchester, London and the Grenfell Tower fire, members of the community play a vital part in the response"

Integrating community volunteers with official teams

Simon Lewis, Head of Crisis Response, British Red Cross will present a session on the charity’s role in emergency response to crises such as the Manchester and London terror attacks. He will explain more about the British Red Cross’ national community reserve volunteers project, which will help build stronger communities by recruiting a practical taskforce of thousands. “When large emergencies happen, there is an outpouring of support from local people. As we’ve seen from Manchester, London and the Grenfell Tower fire, members of the community play a vital part in the response. Harnessing these valuable voluntary acts and integrating them with the official response has long posed a challenge to the emergency planning and response sector. The project aims to enhance community resilience by providing local people with a focused and practical way to help others, particularly during long-running major incidents, says Mr Lewis.

All of the free seminars will be CPD-accredited.

College of Paramedics workshops

The College of Paramedics will once again deliver a programme of free 30-minute CPD workshops which cover trauma, airway management, basic and advanced life support as well as a reflective account on the past London bombings.

Demonstrations from blue lights services

In the networking hub of the show - The Collaboration Zone - over 80 voluntary groups, charities and NGOs will be sharing details of the support they offer, while members of other blue lights services will be available to discuss co-response, current trends and share ideas. The Special Response Unit of the British Transport Police (BTP) will be on hand at the show to demonstrate some of the equipment and techniques it uses to help BTP deal with potential threats to the rail network. The unit of highly skilled officers responds to reports of suspicious or unusual items on the railway, whilst keeping stations open and trains running to minimise disruption to passengers. They make crucial decisions under immense pressure every day and will be offering an insight into how they do this.

There will also be a chance to meet the four-legged crime fighters that also help to keep the railway safe and secure

BTP will be providing information about other initiatives it uses to detect, deter and disrupt a wide range of crime on the railway, including terrorism, and how the force encourages members of the public to report suspicious behaviour or activity on the network. There will also be a chance to meet the four-legged crime fighters that also help to keep the railway safe and secure.

Mitigating CBRN Risk

On the CBRN Centre stand visitors can be updated on the UK’s multi-agency approach to CBRN threat. Deputy Head of the National CBRN Centre, Chief Inspector Richard Butterworth, explains: “Our tri-service team, with partner agencies, continually reviews the CBRN threat and mitigates identified vulnerabilities. It also equips UK emergency responders with the knowledge and capability to respond in a proportionate, agile and effective manner to a CBRN incident. The CBRN threat has not changed, but we must be cognisant of our increasingly connected world, where information and expertise that has historically been hard to access is now instantly available at the click of a button. This, combined with the fast flow of people and goods, is a challenge for us in mitigating the CBRN risk. It is essential that the emergency services and its partners continue to prepare through training and exercising a multi-agency response. However, we must also be mindful of the opportunities developing for improving our capability. Considering and planning how the future emergency response will look is vital. To this end, we are actively searching for innovative technologies and approaches that will further protect and save lives.

Mark Williams, CEO of the Police Firearms Officer Association (PFOA) agrees that technology and training are key: “It is important that we keep up to date with the latest technology to ensure we are at the cutting edge to give officers and forces the best tools to fight crime and the threat of terrorism, and at the same time ensuring that the training is appropriate and the best it can be to prepare officers to be able to best protect themselves and the public.

Visitors to the PFOA stand can find out more about its Welfare Support Programme which includes a 24/7 support line

Welfare Support Programme

Visitors to the PFOA stand can find out more about its Welfare Support Programme which includes a 24/7 support line. The PFOA also delivers Post Incident Management training to UK police forces and agencies, as well as government and organisations that may be involved in such processes. “After the recent terrorist attacks the PFOA has been busier than ever assisting officers involved, both armed and unarmed, says Mr Williams.

Protect the Protectors campaign

A new seminar theatre dedicated to the health and wellbeing of emergency services personnel will cover issues such as mental health and health and safety. Visitors will hear about strategies for supporting crews’ post-incident and learn more about the blue light wellbeing framework for all emergency services being developed by the College of Policing in conjunction with Public Health England. Personal stories will be shared by a serving police officer who suffered a nervous breakdown and a paramedic diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) who has set up the charity Our Blue Light. Simon Durance and Gary Hayes, co-founders of the charity PTSD999, will present a session on living with PTSD.

The Police Federation of England and Wales will be sharing details of its Protect the Protectors campaign. The Federation is pressing for better training and access to equipment, a wider roll-out of protection measures such as Taser, Body Worn Video and spit guards, more accurate data on police assaults and improved welfare support.

"With the increase of terrorist incidents in the UK the inescapable fact is there needs to be an increased awareness of trauma first aid by the general public"

Service providers showcase

With over 400 exhibiting companies and organisations (including over 50 new names), the impressive indoor and outdoor exhibition is a one-stop shop for sourcing all the latest services and equipment. Exhibiting companies include leading names in first response, communications, IT, protective clothing and uniforms, body-worn video, medical supplies, vehicles and fleet, vehicle equipment, drones, outsourcing, training, community safety and station facilities.

Excelerate for example will be demonstrating a range of surveillance and communications equipment on its stand including the Sherpa portable camera that can climb lamp-posts, the Proclux long range camera which can be used in harsh and challenging environments and a Command Pod deployable resilient data network to facilitate live camera and data streams within the incident ground.

Medical supplies showcase

Suppliers of medical products include Water-Jel International which will be exhibiting its burn-treatment dressings and Celox which will showcase Celox Rapid its fastest haemostatic gauze that stops life-threatening bleeding with only 60 seconds compression. Fenton Pharmaceuticals will be showcasing a range of pre-hospital trauma products including tourniquets. Business Development Manager, Andrew Saunders says: “With the increase of terrorist incidents in the UK the inescapable fact is there needs to be an increased awareness of trauma first aid by the general public. Pre-hospital trauma equipment is continually evolving and we are at the forefront of that evolution but we must not forget the solid basics of immediate first aid in the event of a terrorist attack: Stop the bleed, keep them breathing.

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