Rehabilitation Unit is part of
the Special Teams And Resources (STAR) Group. It's function
is to provide support to the rescuers, not the victims, at a Large
Scale Incident (LSI) or specialized incident, such as a major fire,
structural collapse or Hazardous Material event.
Fighting a fire, rescuing people entrapped in cars or buildings,
or conducting a search for a lost child can take many hours, even
days, and be grueling for the rescuers. Without proper rest,
hydration and nutrition, the rescuers become less able to perform
their function, and their own personal safety and health can be jeopardized. In
fact, the number one cause of firefighter fatalities in the U.S.
is heart attack, after the firefighter leaves the scene
of the fire.
The Rehab Unit is called in when the incident is expected to be prolonged
and careful monitoring of the health of the responders is required. Unit
is equipped with necessary provisions and equipment to keep the responders
refreshed, and the Team is trained to look for signs of distress
in rescuers, carfully monitor and document their vital signs and
other important physiological indicators, and, if necessary, provide
medical treatment and transport to a hospital.
Without proper rest and rehab, rescuers cannot do their jobs. Therefore,
the Rehab Unit provides the means to keep the responders at the top
of their game.