UC Davis – Incidents Involving Animals Conference

The British Animal Rescue and Trauma Care Association held this year’s event in partnership with UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine in California. This was an exciting opportunity for continuing our vision of building relationships and developing best practice.

Whether emergency responder or veterinarian, county or state animal rescue team member, animal control, welfare society or local authority with responsibility for developing county emergency plans. If your duties involve interacting with animals in anyway, then there was something for you.

A conference update is now available, just click on this link to view:  An Inspirational Event…

BARTA’s own Jim Green delivering his part of Animals as a Cross-cutter presentation and setting the out our vision for collaboration and sharing what we learn

Rebecca (Right) enjoying lunch with Jennifer Garcia after delivering her presentation

Speaker – Rebecca Gimenez (TLAER)

Legacies to Progress – Building a Community
One of the key reasons for BARTA hosting an international event such as Prague 2015 and now with UC Davis in 2017 is to build a community who can share and gain knowledge and experience through collaboration and consensus.

There are many people worldwide who can contribute to a growing understanding of animal incidents and share some of the development work streams which will assist in growing the initiative quickly. In the opening session Rebecca explored the content of Prague 2015 and looked at the outcomes, some of which have led to further progress.

We hope that this session inspired continued collaboration and belonging, to a community dedicated to providing best practice.

Download Rebecca’s Presentation

Speaker: Emma Punt (BARTA Research Lead)

A Vision for Safer Equine Transportation

At the last conference, BARTA demonstrated through a preliminary survey the need for greater research into the transportation of equines and the scale of unwanted incidents occurring. Results showed that many people had to deal with situations, often at immense risk to themselves and their horse.

BARTA teamed up with Nottingham Trent University to prepare a scientifically based study which was rolled out in the winter of 2016 and spring 2017. Emma announced the results at conference and the intention is that the survey can now be adapted and adopted on a global scale.

Download Emma’s presentation

Emma (Left) sat with BARTA’s Jenny Crouch on the UC Davis Fire Dept Brush Truck at the event BBQ

The iconic UC Davis, School of Veterinary medicine, Water Tower

Speaker: Eric Davis (IAWTI, UC Davis)

Equine Stress – What are the Answers to Safer Rescues?

We all acknowledge the relationship between anxiety/stress and adrenaline, the body wide stress hormone that creates such a dangerous scene for rescuers.

Chemical control of an animal has become a fundamental consideration for any tactical plan and comes with its own skill set. But adrenaline, working in the same part of the brain as the sedative can often be triggered by the stimulating nature of a rescue and even a seemingly well sedated animal can remain a danger to rescuers.

Trials are underway which will assist in identifying levels of windup and anxiety. Here we will give an overview of what tools might assist the veterinarian/rescue team.

What if there was a drug that turned off the adrenaline and took away the fear response?

Trials at UC Davis in the summer of 2017 will determine the effectiveness of Propranolol in doing just that.

Download Eric’s presentation

Speaker – Brad Wilson (Triangle Fire Safety and EquiProtect)

Agricultural Fire Safety Solutions – Setting New Standards

In Prague the subject of agricultural fire safety was discussed in detail. Rural locations, proliferation of fuels, lack of legislative requirements and poor understanding of the needs for an effective fire plan were some of the problems identified.

Since then extensive development has taken place to provide solutions to detection, alerting and suppression of fires in these environments.

Using an air testing system, modern alerting and misting sprinklers with additives adds up to an all round purpose fit for the agricultural setting.

Find out about how this could just make the difference…

Download Brad’s presentation

Brad Wilson with Jim checking out the traditional american barns found on the UC Davis site.

Ragan Adams (left) sharing a moment with Rebecca McConicco during a break

Speaker – Ragan Adams (Colorado State University)

Community Outreach – Tailoring Community Resilience Programs

Communities often benefit from support when developing their plans for resilience and response. But every community is different and therefore a way forward isn’t always clear cut.

We will explore how this support might be gained and how community programs can be tailored to meet the local needs.

Download Ragan’s presentation

Speaker – John Maretti (North Valley Animal Disaster Group)

Integrating the Volunteer Animal Support Component-Practical Considerations

Integrating volunteer programs into mainstream emergency response can take a while to develop confidence and trust. There are some key areas to focus on and in this session we will see an example of one group who have successfully achieved and tested for real, an integrated response.

Download John’s presentation

Case Study – Oroville Dam Emergency

Usually the incentive to develop comes from a definitive event. That was the case for one group, many years ago and they have been serving their community ever since. But last winter an event no-one could have predicted tested this team to the max and demonstrated the need for everything talked about in the previous sessions.

It was a good job they were prepared!

Download John’s presentation

John delivering a really powerful reflection on the Orville Dam Emergency

One of our event sponsors Julie Atwood of the Halter Project, delivering a very entertaining presentation after coming straight to the event from the site of the wildfires around Sonoma. Thank You Julie

Speaker – Julie Atwood (HALTER Project)

Supporting Community Resilience Programs

In the US it is clear that whilst the mandate to prepare for incidents involving animals exists, it is an unfunded one which requires support from other means.

One such group set out to support local emergency responders, but ended up at the White House, being recognised for their successful enterprise which now goes much farther than the original remit.

Download Julie’s presentation

Speakers – Jim Green (BARTA) and Julie Fiedler (Horse SA)

Animal Rescue Response and Techniques – Animals as a ‘Cross-cutter’

Animals cut across all functions and disciplines. For emergency responders who have standard operating procedures for most scenarios they encounter, the presence of animals dramatically changes the risks and control measures associated with the incident type.

Animals bring unpredictability to a situation and as such the variety of issues and resolutions required to resolve it means that the levels of response and associated skills are wide ranging.

Not only emergency responders are affected, anyone keeping animals or working with animals might need to embrace modern rescue or incident management tools.

Download Jim and Julie’s presentation

Here’s Julie from Horse SA delivering her part of the Animals as a Cross-cutter presentation

Here’s Neil talking about BARTA’s education programme for vets and emergency responders.

Speaker – Neil Rae (BARTA eLearning and Education Development) and Ronnie Jeffrey (Farm Kennels)

Animal Handling/Psychology – Tailoring to the Role of the Responder

One of the basic requirements of any incident involving animals is an understanding of the animal itself and the implications of responder actions on its behaviour and demeanour.

For the emergency responder particularly, this understanding rarely comes naturally and in relation to risk, very little information is immediately available to assist in making tactical decisions. Therefore training is required and should underpin any rescue training.

Responders come in many forms with differing roles. Therefore any training should be delivered with the specific operational needs in mind. BARTA, with partners continue to develop a variety of courses in line with the needs of organisations such as the Police, Fire and Rescue Service and Highways Traffic Officers.

Download Neil’s presentation

Speaker – Guillaume l. Hoareau (Clinical Investigation Facility, Travis Air Force Base)

Small Animal Immediate Emergency Care (IEC) – For Who, to What Level and Under What Legal Authority

The treatment of small animals at an emergency is often more complicated than large animals for whom the large animal vet is usually available to attend. First responders are often required to improvise human techniques to support an animal in distress.

This however throws up two problems, firstly without behaviour and restraint training, first responders are exposed to risks from scared or injured animals. Secondly, in the US for instance, the law in most states precludes anyone other than a vet from administering care.

Even giving oxygen to a dog after a house fire is technically breaking the law.

The law has changed in some states to protect the first responder from doing what the public expect. But how far should this training extend and in what circumstance?

We will explore the potential for advancing small animal Immediate Emergency Care.

Download Guillaume’s presentation

Guillaume pictured here on the left talking with delegates on a break. Guillaume gave a fascinating incite into small animal IEC.

Caught on camera with the amazing Tricia Andrade, Casey and Hayley not only delivered a great presentation, but helped out behind the scenes throughout the event.

Speakers – Casie Lee and Hayley Dieckmann (Veterinary Student, School of Veterinary Medicine, UC Davis)

Role of the Modern Veterinarian – The Modern Student’s View

This year UC Davis has 100 students registered in the student Veterinary Emergency Response Team club. 60 of these students pursued a special studies program dedicated to learning more about veterinary response in emergencies and disasters.

With the strap-line of the vet school demonstrating the role of the vet is to meet societal needs, this session will explore the view of the students who engaged in additional training whilst at university to be better prepared for the role they will face when a practitioner.

How might the role of the vet be adapting to new challenges and what do these students expect from their educators in preparation for their role in society when they qualify in 2020?

Download Casie and Hayley’s presentation

Speaker – Dr. Rebecca McConnico (Professor and Veterinarian – Louisiana Tech University)

Veterinary Education for Emergency and Disasters

(Determining priorities for veterinary education and understanding challenges in meeting societal needs for emergency and disaster situations withing the context of the wider curriculum)

For some years now, as animal rescue has become a standard response for fire and rescue services in the UK vets are experiencing more demands in regard to attending these situations.

Many current curriculum’s do not have capacity for integration of veterinary rescue and trauma care field training and reliance has been on capturing a small number of final year undergrads during electives by invitation of selected universities. Some universities are offering disaster and/or rescue training now but this is not standardised.

In the UK, to comply with qualification for the Practice Standards Scheme, at least one member of the team must be a BARTA qualified Rescue First Responder.

This session will afford opportunity for educators to demonstrate what they are providing and for a discussion around the current constraints to incorporating rescue and disaster training within the curriculum and how meeting societal needs might be a catalyst for future training opportunities and development.

Download Rebecca’s presentation

Rebecca is pictured here about to start delivering here presentation on veterinary education for emergencies and disasters

Jim talking about how we can we can all work together to continually improve our emergency response to animal related incidents

Speaker – Jim Green (BARTA Director of Rescue)

BARTA INTERNATIONAL – Developing Worldwide Best Practices and Building Communities and Resources

Prague 2015 demonstrated that across continents, animal related problems are largely the same. BARTA believe that great work is being carried out in many areas of the world and want to host a platform whereby these ideas can be shared.

This will enable those further along the journey to recognise different ways and assess how these might be weaved into the toolbox of techniques and also to help those who are just starting out to have a framework from which to build their animal component.

The ability to assess equipment, methodology, skills and training from across the world will lead to scientific or consensus opinion on international best practices which will assist in identifying weaknesses in current provision and share responsibility for development ideas.

A platform for professionals to share open access resources will be invaluable in promoting and enhancing the knowledge and understanding required to safely resolve an incident involving animals.

Download Jim’s presentation

Speaker – Josh Slater (Director, BARTA, RVC Professor of Equine Clinical Studies and Director of Equine Hospital)

What is a BARTA Vet? – The Journey to Provide BARTA Vets in the Community

BARTA have developed veterinary responder training based on a skills gap analysis, considering what a student will learn at university and the skills required to participate fully in a multi agency emergency event.

These courses are endorsed and embraced by the UK veterinary associations and delivered either as a regional or stakeholder course.

The important aspect is standardisation and identity. All BARTA trained vets receive a common syllabus as do the fire and rescue services. Therefore the end result should be seamless operation and interaction at the scene whatever part of the country.

In this session we explore what kind of training is received and expectations of the BARTA vet in practice.

Download Josh’s presentation

Josh gave us an insight into the BARTA Vet education programme is seen here making notes whilst Steve Foye links to our next speaker.

Steve did an amazing job comparing the whole event and provided us with two hard hitting presentations reminding us of why we need to build a strong, supported and engaged community for the future

Speaker – Steve Foye (Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service)

Critical Incident Stress Management – Application to the Veterinarian

Critical Incident Stress Management is not new to the emergency services, however being a vet brings with it one of the highest suicide rates of any occupation.

We have known for a while that vets often work alone and might not have the same access to support, especially following an incident.

So, how might we develop a better understanding of this and better support vets at our incidents in the future?

Download Steve’s presentation

Managing Risk in a No Blame Culture – How to Apply Learning and Move Forward Stronger

If we are not learning, we are not moving forward and when it comes to incidents involving animals, this is a relatively new discipline with much more to learn and discover!

Historical methodology and cultures are being challenged in a drive to improve safety and welfare. Changing hearts and minds can take a long time and not everyone is receptive to hearing that what they consider good practice could be unsafe or unhealthy practice.

The fire and rescue service in the UK is one example of how methodology and equipment have changed dramatically over recent years and that is largely to do with the way they react when things go wrong.

There is a general culture of self reflection after any situation whether the result was good or bad with a view to considering whether alternative methods or personal performance could be more effective.

The important aspect of a healthy organisation is to operate in an environment of transparency and look for opportunities to move forward stronger, rather than looking to apportion blame. This empowers people to be open about results and actions.

A recent question from a leader in the veterinary community was to determine how the fire and rescue service as a whole have benefited from moving forward in a no blame culture and we will explore what that means in this session which we hope will benefit those also committed to a healthy and progressive organisation.

Download Steve’s presentation