Wildland Fire Safety & Health Reporting Network

SAFENET Event Information
Create Agency Corrective Action

Event Start Date:
06/21/2017 1000
Event Stop Date:
06/21/2017 1300 
Incident Name:
Forest Service Dispatch Generic Computer Profiles
Fire Number:
Local Unit:
Cody Interagency Dispatch Center
Incident Type:
Wildland, Training
Incident Activity:
Stage of Incident:
Position Title:
Assistant Center Manager 
Management Level:
Resources Involved:
Contributing Factors
Contributing Factors:
Communications, Equipment
Human Factors:
Other Factors:
Describe in detail what happened including the concern or potential issue, the environment (weather, terrain, fire behavior, etc), and the resulting health issue.
Today our dispatch center ran into an issue with our generic computer profiles. We log into 8 Initial Attack/Aircraft and 6 expanded computers every morning with dispatch generic profiles because we're interagency with BLM, BIA, and FS employees using the FS network. However, this morning around 1000 all our computers logged us out saying we needed to now use our linc pass credentials. We immediately contacted our local CIO help and he spent the rest of the morning getting our dispatch computer exemptions reinstated. Kevin informed us that after this summer, dispatch centers running on FS networks will not be able to have an exemption and CIO will require dispatch centers to login with linc card passes. We discussed the issue with non FS personnel, such as other dispatch agency employees (BLM/BIA/NPS/State/etc), AD’s, militia folks, that come to help us and they would not be able to login to the computers.

We expressed our concern to Kevin with the amount of AD’s and militia that are used in dispatch centers you need to have generic profiles. Kevin indicated that after this summer, a dispatch center FS employee would have to login using their linc card pass for each non FS individual. Obviously this raises security concerns with having multiple people logged in under one person’s profile. I personally do not want 14 people logged in under me. In interagency dispatch centers, you can’t always guarantee that a local FS dispatcher or even a local (other federal agency) dispatcher will be available to log people onto the computers. Many times we have non FS militia or again AD’s be our night dispatcher. That person works alone all night and according to Kevin would not be able to login without a FS dispatcher present to use their linc pass. He too agrees this is a serious concern for dispatch centers nationwide.

Additionally, we have a BIA employee that we’ve been trying to get a FS profile for the last two+ months. We’re still having problems with getting him a profile and he’s a regular Cody Dispatch employee that has to use the generic profile login. While our local CIO contact was working on our generic profile exemption, Hal was unable to assist with anything on the computers. We were fortunate that the morning resource check in rush had slowed down, I was able to document everything in our CAD system and fill ROSS orders. Had we been busier or a fire started requiring multiple resources especially aircraft it could have been a major disaster.

I know this issue has been brought up many times in the past and I thought we had figured it out with the dispatch exemptions. If there is a switch planned for this coming fall it really could impact dispatch operations nationwide. As we all know fire season is pretty much year round anymore.
Immediate Action Taken
Reporting Individual : please describe actions you took to correct or mitigate the unsafe/unhealthful event.
We immediately contacted Local CIO contact on the Bighorn NF. He spent 3 hours working on the dispatch exemptions. Had he not been at work today who knows how long it would have been before someone at CIO got back to us. I've sent an email to Micheal Vigil, Liaison Fire/LEI for CIO, with the same verbiage. This really needs to be addressed at a higher level and was identified as an issue in the IDIP. I found out this not only affected our dispatch center but also impacts the Rocky Mountain Coordination Center.

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