The way #VOST communicates weather hazards may change forever this weekend. #GOESR #NOAA #NASA


This weekend, the way VOST communicates weather hazards may change forever.

On Friday and Saturday November 18th and 19th 2016, NYVOST Team Lead Matt Green is part of the #NASAsocial program at the Kennedy Space Center, providing a behind the scenes look at the launch of NASA and NOAA’s GOES-R: “America’s Next-Generation Geostationary Weather Satellite”.

What is GOES-R?

GOES-R is the most advanced weather satellite ever launched, and its Advanced Baseline Imager (ABI) is a game changer for weather forecasting, hurricane tracking, and much more. It has been compared to upgrading “from black-and-white to high-definition TV”.

How is this relevant to Virtual Operations Support Teams?

The quality and speed of hazardous weather data reaching meteorologists is directly related to the quality and speed that we (#VOST) can communicate and amplify critical information to the public to help save lives. Like its predecessors, GOES-R will provide its enhanced weather data to The Emergency Managers Weather Information Network, which “is a direct service to users with weather forecasts, warnings, graphics, and other information directly from the National Weather Service (NWS) in near real time”.

The improvements aboard GOES-R include the ability to provide three times more spectral information, four times greater spatial resolution, and five times faster coverage. Scanning the entire Western Hemisphere in just five minutes, it’s #impressive.

These improvements will allow state and local officials (and of course, their respective VOSTs) to enhance their ability to make lifesaving decisions, and confidently communicate them to the public – for example, we’ll no longer need to wait for hurricane forecast changes in three hour increments, it’ll be available within minutes.

Also on board GOES-R is the Geostationary Lightning Mapper, the first of its kind to be flown in geosynchronous orbit (an orbit that keeps the satellite over a specific location over the Earth). The ability to map lightning activity increases the accuracy in detection of severe weather, and can help reduce false alarms. Being in the industry of communicating hazards, we all understand the benefits of building trust within our constituency with more timely and accurate warnings.

In addition to lifesaving weather forecasting technologies, GOES-R will also contribute to the NOAA’s Search and Rescue Satellite Aided Tracking (SARSAT) System to detect and locate ships and planes in distress almost anywhere in the world at any time and in almost any condition.

GOES-R is scheduled to launch this Saturday, November 19, 2016 at 5:42 p.m. EST. Follow the #GOESR hashtags this Friday & Saturday for everything you need to know about this revolutionary piece of technology & those responsible for its successful launch.

Join us on Twitter at @NYVOST, and @The_MattGreen to experience this event from an Emergency Manager’s perspective.

Check out – Long Island’s New Online Safety Resource


As #Hermine exits stage right, let us leave you with a great new resource for Long Islanders, launched by United Way, 2-1-1 Long Island and PSEG Long Island last week. The new safety initiative at is a collaboration between PSEG Long Island, United Way of Long Island, and 2-1-1 Long Island, designed to help Long Islanders be prepared before, during, and after a disaster. By following a few simple steps, you can help protect your entire family in the case of an emergency. Features of include:

  • preparedness tips and facts about variety of disaster categories;
  • an expansive but concise database of programs and support services;
  • critical phone numbers and websites of recovery resources;
  • up-to-the-minute weather tracking and outage maps;
  • educational videos and guides for children from Sesame Street;
  • a short quiz testing the user’s preparedness level

Check it out!



Second Avenue Building Collapse #EastVillage

FDNY second avenue building collapse NYVOST deployment v.2RR   Google DocsNew York Virtual Operations Support Team


Response/Exercise: March 26, 2015 – March 30,2015

Situation Summary

On March 26, 2015 at 1517 hrs, FDNY units were dispatched to 123 2nd Ave between 7th Street and St. Mark’s Place for a fire and possible explosion. At 1522 hrs a structural fire and building collapse were reported by arriving units. By 1554 the incident had reached a 7th alarm. Two 5-story buildings were fully involved with fire, as well as 3 floors of a neighboring 7-story building. Surrounding occupancies were evacuated and a perimeter was established. Outside operations commenced due to the large volume of fire. All three buildings eventually collapsed.

Integrating social media into Situational Awareness supports the enhanced quality of
decision making and risk management processes. During the operational period, the NYVOST employed a range of emerging technologies to support an integrated Situational Awareness toolset for the FDNY Incident Management Team by:

  • Monitoring social media for mission-critical information from the public
  • Amplifying public safety messaging from the FDNY and related NYC sources
  • Performing quality assurance and reputation management for the activating agency
  • Archiving and AAR reporting

Operational personnel can gain much from practicing the actual tasks that would be
executed in the event of a major disaster, such as Superstorm Sandy. NYVOST members (VOSTies) gained ninety six (96) hours of activation experience in total over the operational period. Individual practitioners gained between (4) hours and forty four (44) hours each, depending on their voluntary availability.

Team Credits

NY VOST Team Lead

Associate Team Lead



For a copy of the AAR, please send a request using the contact form below:

[contact-form][contact-field label=’Name’ type=’name’ required=’1’/][contact-field label=’Email’ type=’email’ required=’1’/][contact-field label=’Website’ type=’url’/][contact-field label=’Comment’ type=’textarea’ required=’1’/][/contact-form]

Resources available for Second Avenue Building Collapse #EastVillage #NYC

“If you ever smell gas, call 911 or immediately.”

For updates, go to



Additional Resources

Official NYC Updates: 
Important Health Information

Información importante para la salud:

Emotional Recovery

Verified Images & Information via NYVOST Pinterest Board

Smell Gas, Act Fast Con Edison describes the Signs of a Gas Leak

Many thanks to the Mayor’s Office, the FDNY Fire & EMS teams, the NYC Office of Emergency Management (OEM),  Con Edison & many others on-scene and behind-scene in response to the East Village Fire and Second Avenue Building Collapse!

East End Long Island Travel bans #EastHampton #Southampton #Southold #Riverhead #ShelterIsland

Jan 27th 2015 4:03PM:

Southold Town Supervisor Scott Russell has rescinded the State of Emergency associated with Winter Storm Juno for Southold Town. If residents must travel, they should use extreme caution as there is still icy pavement and wind-driven snow on some Town roadways.

Jan 27 2015 3:40PM:

NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced earlier that travel bans in both Nassau and Suffolk counties were lifted. Despite the announcement, non-emergency travel in five East End towns is still restricted, where a Winter Storm Warning and State of Emergency is still in effect until approximately 7pm Tuesday evening for the five east end towns of East Hampton, Southampton, Southold, Riverhead and Shelter Island.

photo: © Dan Reyburn

photo: Southold © Dan Reyburn

Points east of Riverhead are still getting snow, light accumulations and gusty winds, that should be over by 7PM – 8PM.

Southold Town Supervisor, Scott Russell, told News 12 Long Island’s ShariEinhorn:

We still have a lot of digging to do, up to 30 inches in some places. Generally, the public is honoring the State of Emergency and staying off the roads.

It will likely be early evening before the State of Emergency will be lifted in Southold, although officials are not giving a specific time. In the meantime, use of all roads within the Town of Southold is prohibited during this declaration, except for essential staff of life care, medical care or health care facilities. Vehicles that are parked in a position to impede the work of Police, Fire or Highway Department personnel will be towed at the owner’s expense.

This post will be updated as necessary.

News 12 Long Island
Suffolk Times News Review


Shoveling? Here are recommendations from the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association offers the following recommendations for those who wish to venture out to shovel:


The American Heart Association says that for most people, shoveling snow may not lead to any health problems. However, the association warns that the risk of a heart attack during snow shoveling may increase for some, stating that the combination of colder temperatures and physical exertion increases the workload on the heart. People who are outdoors in cold weather should avoid sudden exertion, like lifting a heavy shovel full of snow. Even walking through heavy, wet snow or snow drifts can strain a person’s heart.

To help make snow removal safer, the American Heart Association has
compiled a list of practical tips.

• Give yourself a break. Take frequent rest breaks during
shoveling so you don’t overstress your heart. Pay attention to how your
body feels during those breaks.

• Don’t eat a heavy meal prior or soon after shoveling. Eating a
large meal can put an extra load on your heart.

• Use a small shovel or consider a snow thrower. The act of
lifting heavy snow can raise blood pressure acutely during the lift. It
is safer to lift smaller amounts more times, than to lug a few huge
shovelfuls of snow. When possible, simply push the snow.

• Learn the heart attack warning signs and listen to your body,
but remember this: Even if you’re not sure it’s a heart attack, have it
checked out (tell a doctor about your symptoms). Minutes matter! Fast
action can save lives — maybe your own. Don’t wait more than five
minutes to call 9-1-1

• Don’t drink alcoholic beverages before or immediately after
shoveling. Alcohol may increase a person’s sensation of warmth and may
cause them to underestimate the extra strain their body is under in the

• Consult a doctor. If you have a medical condition, don’t
exercise on a regular basis or are middle aged or older, meet with your
doctor prior to the first anticipated snowfall.

• Be aware of the dangers of hypothermia. Heart failure causes
most deaths in hypothermia. To prevent hypothermia, dress in layers of
warm clothing, which traps air between layers forming a protective
insulation. Wear a hat because much of your body’s heat can be lost
through your head.

Heart Attack Warning Signs
Some heart attacks are sudden and intense — the “movie heart attack,”
where no one doubts what’s happening. But most heart attacks start
slowly, with mild pain or discomfort. Often people affected aren’t sure
what’s wrong and wait too long before getting help. Here are signs that
can mean a heart attack is happening:

• Chest discomfort. Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the
center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes
away and comes back. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing,
fullness or pain.

• Discomfort in other areas of the upper body. Symptoms can
include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or

• Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.

• Other signs may include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea
or lightheadedness.

As with men, women’s most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or
discomfort. But women are somewhat more likely than men to experience
some of the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath,
nausea/vomiting, and back or jaw pain.

Calling 9-1-1 is almost always the fastest way to get lifesaving
treatment. Emergency medical services (EMS) staff can begin treatment
when they arrive — up to an hour sooner than if someone gets to the
hospital by car. EMS staff is also trained to revive someone whose heart
has stopped. Patients with chest pain who arrive by ambulance usually
receive faster treatment at the hospital, too. It is best to call EMS
for rapid transport to the emergency room. If you can’t access EMS, have
someone drive you to the hospital right away. If you’re the one having
symptoms, don’t drive yourself, unless you have absolutely no other option.

Continue Reading here:

Photo Credit:

Most People on LI Have Power!

Reposted from PSEG Long Island

PSEG Long Island: Storm Update – January 27, 2015 9:00 a.m. ET

PSEG Long Island is reporting that, as of 9:00 a.m. ET, 150 of its 1.1 million customers across Long Island and the Rockaways are without power – with restoration expected today.

The first significant winter weather event of 2015 has had little impact on PSEG Long Island’s electric system. Since the storm began yesterday, PSEG Long Island has restored power to more than 7,000 customers. With minimal outages, PSEG Long Island is releasing all mutual assistance personnel that came to Long Island to assist the utility’s own personnel.

All of PSEG Long Island’s customer offices will remain closed today for regular business. The following customer offices are open as Customer Outreach Centers and will be staffed and stocked with bottled water and charging stations for customers to charge their personal communications devices:

  • Riverhead – 117 Doctor’s Path, Riverhead, NY 11901
  • Brentwood – 1650 Islip Avenue, Brentwood, NY 11717
  • Roslyn Heights – 250 Willis Avenue, Roslyn Heights, NY 11577

Customers are reminded to stay in touch with PSEG Long Island:

  • To report downed wires or power outages, customers should call PSEG Long Island’s Customer Service line at 1-800-490-0075
  • Once registered, report power outages by texting “OUT” to PSEGLI (773454)
  • Check for updates using our outage map at
  • Follow PSEG Facebook and Twitter pages for restoration progress. Do not report outages through our social media pages

Social Posts Document the Snow!

Here are some pics of the snow we have found posted by citizens.