By: Lydia Crawley
The Parsons Advocate
Tucker County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management Director Kevin White addressed the Tucker County Commission in regular session. White reported on the status of his department’s mobile equipment trailers and the county funded shelter project to protect them.
. “The Command Trailer, Communications Trailer is ready…to be picked back up,” White said. “It suffered a catastrophic failure due to an electrical issue that was unpreventable to our knowledge.”
According to White, the failure was due to moisture inundation to the fuse box. “Somehow, someway, some moisture got inside of the contactor, the fuse box basically,” White said. “And when we turned on the power, it fried itself.”
White said the cost of repair was $483. “It is back,” White said. “And it was only…483. It wasn’t a large bill to get it fixed, but it is fixed and operational.”
The unit should be back in the county and available for use by the weekend, according to White. “We’ll be going this week sometime, maybe this weekend to get it picked up and get it back into the county so it can be used if necessary.”
Tucker County Commissioner Mike Rosenau asked about the status of the shelter the county had funded for the equipment trailers. “On that same note,” Rosenau said. “Are the covers that we had installed for the rest of your equipment, are they in place?”
According to White the base has been erected and is leveling. “The pillars are erected and leveling,” White said. “So basically, it’s like a footer, its complete. The call has been made and been placed, about two weeks ago, to the company to start erecting the awning.”
White said he was hopeful the canopy could be installed soon, but was unsure of an exact schedule for completion of the project. “I’m not sure what their schedule is,” White said. “But we’re hoping they will get started on that real soon and then we can get all the trailers back where they belong.”
The shelter should hold nearly all the trailers and equipment needed, according to White. “Basically, we should be able to get almost every one of our units underneath there and stored out of the weather,” White said.
Rosenau commented that the shelter would prevent problems the equipment is currently experiencing. “Which will help alleviate the problems that we are having currently,” Rosenau said.
White said the trailers were in need of maintenance when he first became Director. “One of the things that preempted me to get to this point was that was, when I first took over, the trailers were in need of some TLC,” White said. “Let’s just leave it at that. Ceiling, the roof seam seal needed done. Different things like that.”
Sun and weather exposure were the cause of the damage, according to White. “The big thing they told me was that it was due to the UV rays and the weather they were exposed to on a daily basis,” White said.
White said a shelter for the Mobile Command Trailer was constructed to protect the most essential piece of equipment. “So, we come up with the idea of getting one erected to put the Mobile Command Trailer on,” White said. “It was the most volatile piece of equipment we had and it’s really helped with it.”
According to White, the cost to repair the trailers the first year amounted to approximately $3,000. “Of course, the first year we did it, I think we spent $3,000 getting them all seam sealed and all that. We won’t have to do that as often with this.”
The project is funded by the county with the land granted by the City of Parsons, according to White. “Now you’ve granted us the money to put another one up,” White said. “The City of Parsons granted us the land to do it on.”
Four of the trailers will be protected under the project, according to White, with only one trailer remaining outside. “We should be able to get at least four more of our trailers, only leaving the antenna trailer out,” White said.
According to White, the antenna trailer is an open, flatbed and not enclosed like the others. “It is not an enclosed trailer, anyways,” White said. “It’s a flatbed with a raiseable antenna on it.”
White said the care of the equipment is mandated by the grants that supplied them. “So we should be in pretty good shape,” White said. “As far as it goes, taking care of our equipment, which we are tasked to with under the guise of the grants we received them from.”
Rosenau said that the project was the responsible thing for the OEM and County to do. It’s the only thing to do,” Rosenau said. “It’s the responsible thing to do.”
According to White, the new shelter will make the equipment more readily available for use for emergencies. “They’ll be in a better place to be used immediately,” White said, “with less chance that there is something wrong with them when we do need them.”
The next meeting of the Tucker County Commission will be held at 4 p.m. on October 25th at the Tucker County Courthouse Old Courtroom.