#PODPower

I really don’t know where to start. So, I’ll just start.

Last Tuesday, Howard County Fire & Rescue Services hosted some bloggers (and such) for a 1/2 day of awesomeness.

When I got the invitation a month or so ago, I was pretty excited. I love our HoCo blogger community, so that was a draw, but also? The invitation promised some pretty great adventures like cutting metal and concrete and some behind-the-scenes info.

The day started out hot and humid beyond belief. In some of the photos that follow, you’ll see dark clouds and serious gloom. But, the weather got better and frankly, we never even noticed because it was so darn interesting.

What is PODPower, you ask? Well, Pods are what you think they are – they are portable, discrete containers for various purposes. They, along with the transporter system, are ready for anything you can imagine that HCDFRS responds to: building collapse, hazardous events, fires (of course), rescue operations like ditches that collapse, emergency sheltering. Each Pod has exactly what it needs – including generators for some.

Some of the Pods were designed and custom built by the HoCo teams, some bought the way they are. They are clever and remind me of those shows about little houses – every single inch is used in incredibly brilliant and efficient ways. It’s truly remarkable.

And you know what else is really cool? This system is very efficient budget-wise. Makes sense, because if you  have fewer trucks since you don’t need a special truck for each situation, but rather switch out pods, there’d be savings  while at the same time makes the preparedness way better for any situation.

These systems started in Europe and are few and far between in the US. Why don’t many departments in the US do this? I cannot imagine.

Now, to show you some photos and talk a little about what we did. The pix aren’t great, but it’s because I was way to engrossed to worry with the camera! Here goes:

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Truck #10
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The day did not look promising. Look at the clouds!
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When they took official photos & snapped one on my phone. #Posing
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The Collapse Pod has tools for breaking and cutting concrete and metal, holding up structures, and more. So fascinating.
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Another Collapse Pod photo.
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Just thought this was neat. This was with the Collapse Pod, I think!
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Peaking inside a pod.
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So organized & using every inch of space.
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Hey Jessie. (Jessie started HoCo Blogs and now also runs Totally HoCo http://totallyhoco.com/ a free HoCo event site. Check it out.
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I like tools.
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Another inside look.
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Cutting steel. (I got to do that. So awesome!)
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Hi Andrew!
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#12, the other Transport truck.
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Really just included this to show how engaged everyone was. It was really gripping!
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Hazmat suit (Hazmat Pod). We were allowed to try it on, but it was so hot out!
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I just can’t get over how every bit of space is used so efficiently. It was really impressive.

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This is a training building. Trying my hand at being arty. 🙂
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Crane operating skills! Yes, I did move that huge, honking concrete barrel. It was kind of like a video game!
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This is the crane.
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Check out the remote!
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Emergency medical pod.
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Andrew & I had such a wonderful morning learning and doing. Thank you to HCDFRS for having us.

Follow them on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube.

One more note: Another bonus was seeing Fadra Nally at the event – she does special projects for HCDFRS. I didn’t know she was local to me so this was lovely!

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