Annual Readiness Review

Many of you might have heard from Emily this week, as part of the OWCN’s Annual Readiness Review.  I wanted to take this opportunity to remind everyone of our training and continuing education requirements.  We are refining our training program to make it more consistent across field and facility operations, and to make it more flexible.  Currently, we have 10 recorded webinars that cover many of our operations.  Starting in 2014, we’ll be introducing a new set of webinars, which will be divided into Core, Level 1, and Special Topics.

We will expect all *new* volunteers and staff to take the Core webinars, which will introduce the basics of oil spill response and include both field and facility activities.  For staff (or volunteers who would like to be considered for hiring as staff during spills), we will have Level 1 webinars.  These will cover a large variety of topics and specific ones will be required for those people filling certain positions (for instance, if you expect to be hired as Processing staff, you will have to take the Processing and Intake webinar).  Finally, we’ll have Special Topics, that will typically be shorter, recorded presentations on narrow topics, such as how to use a GPS unit, or how to gavage a bird.  Of course, in the fall of every year we will host Oilapalooza, where more advanced (Level 2) trainings will be offered.

We are always thinking about ways to improve capture and care of oiled wildlife, and because of that, practices and protocols change.  For this reason, we have continuing education requirements for everyone — staff, volunteers, seasoned responders, etc.  These are currently 8 hours of OWCN training every 3 years.  Core, Level 1, Special Topics, and Oilapalooza trainings all count towards the 8 hours, but Hazwoper training does not.

Becky just stopped by and reminded me to tell you that on Friday, March 1st at 12 noon Kyra will be presenting “Oiled Wildlife Recovery Level One” webinar.  Contact Becky if you’re interested in attending!

And now brings me to the EXCITING part of this blog post . . . . . Oilapalooza 2013 news!!!!  Yes, we have started working on Oilapalooza!  Oct 26-27, 2013 in sunny San Diego!  SAVE the DATE!!!  Our hotel and lecture venue will be the Dana, and our local host will be SeaWorld San Diego, where we will have our Sunday workshops.  The SeaWorld folks are very excited about hosting us, so we can expect a fabulous event.

Have a great weekend, and don’t spill anything!


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