Past Chief George Zayas

Active Shooter for Fire and EMS: An Integrated Response

Past Chief George Zayas

In an unpredictable era where emergency responders are often called upon to do more than fight fires, Past Chief George Zayas offers essential training for an increasingly and unfortunately common form of tragedy. Chief Zayas brings more than 30 years of law enforcement and fire service experience to a discussion of the “rescue task force” concept in his “Active Shooter for Fire and EMS: An Integrated Response” workshop.

It is not a matter of where, it’s a matter of when. We have to be prepared and train together.

Active shooter events have sadly become a way of life in the United States and all over the world. It is an epidemic that does not have an end in sight. As first responders, we have to change our mind set on our response to emergencies. We all want to help, but at some point we have to protect ourselves and our partners.

Active shooter is a law enforcement event, but they will need fire and EMS. So, we have to adapt an integrated response, which takes leaving attitudes at the door and working together to achieve one goal: saving lives!

This presentation explores an integrated response to an active shooter event by police, fire and EMS. Now more than ever, volunteer fire and EMS organizations are depended on in these types of situations.

Presenter Chief Zayas retired as a detective from the Stony Point Police Department in 2015. During his 30-year tenure, he helped develop active shooter policies for the 9,000-student North Rockland School District. He is currently a Rockland County Deputy Fire Coordinator responsible for responding to large-scale emergencies and assisting the incident commander. In addition, he is a New York State Fire Instructor and teaches at the Rockland County Fire Training Center in Pomona.

Chief Zayas has also been a volunteer firefighter for 35 years, serving both the Haverstraw Fire Department as a member of Lady Warren Hose Co. No. 5 and West Haverstraw Fire Department Volunteer Co. No. 2, where he served as Chief of the Department from 2010 to 2012.