A good boy scout is always prepared. (Ask action film star Bruce Willis, he knows). While we might not have had Bruce Willis in mind when we acquired our Mobile Response Unit (okay, maybe a little bit), we definitely had the transportation safety of British Columbians front and centre. After all safety is our number one priority and we are often required to respond to emergency situations such as floods, fires and even toxic spills.
“What’s a Mobile Response Unit” you ask? It’s kind of like an emergency operations command unit on wheels – ready to roll at a moment’s notice, should a disaster occur. It’s formally called our “Incident Command Vehicle”, but some of us like to call him Bruce. September is National Preparedness Month, and the addition of this nifty tool to our emergency stock is one of the ways we are trying to ‘be prepared’.
The vehicle came equipped with work spaces, white boards, stainless steel interior, antenna, generator, shore power set-up, air conditioner, full interior lights and fuse panel and a 40-foot mast at the rear of the vehicle which will be used to secure camera equipment. All equipment on the vehicle can operate with the engine running, off the generator or by RV-style power outlet. We have painted and added decals to the vehicle, installed emergency lighting, local area computer connection, an RV-style washroom, set up Wi-Fi, installed radios and Voice over Internet Provide (VOIP) phone systems. This is pretty much everything ministry employees might need to respond to emergency situations, dispatch staff and communicate up to the minute information from almost anywhere in the province!
While our mobile response unit is a really exciting thing all on its own, Bruce is actually serving double duty for the folks of British Columbia. That’s because this vehicle will also be used on a daily basis by our Commercial Vehicle Safety Enforcement (CVSE) branch. The vehicle will serve as a mobile enforcement unit to help ensure that the commercial vehicles that travel our province’s roadways are fully compliant. The vehicle made its first appearance in 2013, at the Cloverdale Rodeo and during the Hope Road Check.
So, while we hope everyone is prepared for an emergency, have no fear – our Mobile Response Unit is ready to roll. (‘Atta boy Bruce!)