Improving national resilience

What about things that cannot be produced in a hurry? I am thinking of spares and consumables for important things.

A Just in Time approach to spares and support is not so good for things like major components for the electrical grid, medical life support systems, emergency service vehicles, and elements of our defence - such as ASW helicopters - mentioned repeatedly such as on the Carrier Strike thread.

I can see a situation in which the emergency services limit use of their vehicles during to a lack of spares.

There is no one-size fits all solution. Some things are lifed, and you can only hold them for so long before they have to be replaced. That’s fine if it’s a set of O-rings for the gearbox of a helicopter type, and you only have 20 of them. But if it’s medical masks for your health service and you need hundreds of millions of them, then perhaps that’s no so affordable to keep that many on hand.

Sone things just become obsolescent. Take the BURLINGTON bunker, for example. It was pretty much obsolete the day the Russians acquired hydrogen bombs. It persevered, however for about 40 years beyond that. Look at the technology though. Manually-switched telephone exchange. It’ll survive an EMP pulse, but you can’t connect it to anything else today. It’s like trying to put an audio cassette into an MP3 player. No computers. Typewriters aplenty, but there’d be no skills to use them, woefully inefficient, and no means to distribute whatever’s been typed outside the bunker. Let’s say they installed computers. They have to be maintained. They have to be swapped out every so often in a technology refresh. You can’t be using 386-based computers running Windows 3.11 in an IP-based world. Who would hold the budget to refresh them? What an easy line-item to delete too, if there’s budget pressure (When isn’t there budget pressure?). “Hoskins, when was the last time we used BURLINGTON?”. “About 8 years ago, Minister”. “Right, strike the new computers for this year”. “Again, Minister?”

From the 1950s through the 2000s, the government maintained a fleet of 1000 basic fire trucks at Marchington. Except a) they were really just pumps, b) the crews (Auxiliary Fire Service) were disbanded before I was born, and I’m 52, c) they were only used on two or three occasions, nationally. There was the incongruity of having these ancient, barely-capable machines being used by barely-competent hastily trained squaddies, while tens of millions of pounds’ worth of firefighting equipment sat idle, due to some equally ancient labour relations ideas that meant they couldn’t be retrieved from the stations. I’ve no doubt their existence fostered a false sense of security too, on the part of some governments. Really, they were intended as auxiliary pumps to get water into cities, not really to fight fires, and certainly not to deal with RTAs.

Yes, you can have too much resilience.
 

Yokel

LE
Another aspect of resilience in a crisis would be the protective security of key infrastructure. Let me give you an easy example. Just a few miles from me there is a NATS radar station. I have driven and walked past it many times, and there seems to be little security - not even a fence and gate.

The station provides coverage of aircraft heading over/from the Atlantic.
 
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PhotEx

On ROPS
On ROPs
However steps can be put in place to make it very difficult if you haven't been vaccinated, and can already be seen in the travel industry where some airlines will not take you unless you have been vaccinated. I can also see this as a condition of any travel insurance.


Well, being as how ≥95% of mongs travel without travel insurance
 

A.N.Other

War Hero
I am sure that I have heard of the principle of assumed consent in the event of an emergency first aid situation. An unconscious casualty cannot consent to be put in the recovery position, but it would be unreasonable to prosecute a first aider for assault for doing so.

Not sure how that works with the semi conscious patient guarding injuries.
If they are alert/conscious they can refuse treatment. To force treatment is assault.

If they are not alert/conscious you can take any measure within the bounds of your training to render aid. Yes, there is assumed consent, as you expect any person would accept treatment if they were alert/conscious.

No first aider has been prosecuted in the UK for rendering aid, within the bounds of their training. Even when the casualty has died or suffered life changing injuries there is no comeback on the first aider where they have acted in good faith.
 

A.N.Other

War Hero
Another aspect of resilience in a crisis would be the protective security of key infrastructure. Let me give you an easy example. Just a few miles from me there is a NATS radar station. I have driven and walked past it many times, and there seems to be little security - not even a fence and gate.

The station provides coverage of aircraft heading over/from the Atlantic.
National Grid has some impressive security at their sites. Airlocked vehicle access, high fencing and non-lethal electrified fence toppers are common.

One site in Cardiff has 4m high concrete walls with sharp rotating bits on on top and a heavy duty sheet steel sliding gate. This may seem over the top but it is within a couple of hundred metres of a Traveller site.
 

Yokel

LE
Another aspect of British/NATO/Western resilience is the ability to produce things in the required number with little notice. Consider the way that designs from established medical ventilator manufacturers were mass produced by the likes of BAE Systems, Rolls Royce, JCB, McLaren, Ford....and so on. That can only happen because of existing engineering capability.

Remember the contribution of component suppliers - such as Graphic PLC:

Graphic PLC are proud to be stepping up and supporting the government’s call to make NHS ventilators and other medical equipment, by manufacturing critically required Printed Circuit Boards, from our 24 hour PCB facility, in Devon.

These medical orders are given top priority by our highly skilled workforce, with many of the pre-production orders manufactured in under 24 hours! The first of these deliveries has already been produced and assembled by the end customer.


My point is that engineering, manufacturing, and project management skills and capabilities contribute to resilience in any sort of crisis.
 

Yokel

LE
There is no one-size fits all solution. Some things are lifed, and you can only hold them for so long before they have to be replaced. That’s fine if it’s a set of O-rings for the gearbox of a helicopter type, and you only have 20 of them. But if it’s medical masks for your health service and you need hundreds of millions of them, then perhaps that’s no so affordable to keep that many on hand.

Sone things just become obsolescent. Take the BURLINGTON bunker, for example. It was pretty much obsolete the day the Russians acquired hydrogen bombs. It persevered, however for about 40 years beyond that. Look at the technology though. Manually-switched telephone exchange. It’ll survive an EMP pulse, but you can’t connect it to anything else today. It’s like trying to put an audio cassette into an MP3 player. No computers. Typewriters aplenty, but there’d be no skills to use them, woefully inefficient, and no means to distribute whatever’s been typed outside the bunker. Let’s say they installed computers. They have to be maintained. They have to be swapped out every so often in a technology refresh. You can’t be using 386-based computers running Windows 3.11 in an IP-based world. Who would hold the budget to refresh them? What an easy line-item to delete too, if there’s budget pressure (When isn’t there budget pressure?). “Hoskins, when was the last time we used BURLINGTON?”. “About 8 years ago, Minister”. “Right, strike the new computers for this year”. “Again, Minister?”

From the 1950s through the 2000s, the government maintained a fleet of 1000 basic fire trucks at Marchington. Except a) they were really just pumps, b) the crews (Auxiliary Fire Service) were disbanded before I was born, and I’m 52, c) they were only used on two or three occasions, nationally. There was the incongruity of having these ancient, barely-capable machines being used by barely-competent hastily trained squaddies, while tens of millions of pounds’ worth of firefighting equipment sat idle, due to some equally ancient labour relations ideas that meant they couldn’t be retrieved from the stations. I’ve no doubt their existence fostered a false sense of security too, on the part of some governments. Really, they were intended as auxiliary pumps to get water into cities, not really to fight fires, and certainly not to deal with RTAs.

Yes, you can have too much resilience.

I am sure that the BURLINGTON bunker was just a decoy for the real plans..... The Green Goddess was really designed in Cold War days for a civil defence firefighting, and were basically pumps on wheels.

Resilience is about flexibility - note the way that packet based communications were originally developed as a way of making a communication system survivable even if parts were destroyed by nuclear attack. Therefore I see it as both strengthening infrastructure and getting rid of single points of failure.
 

Yokel

LE
Talking of flexibility - does anyone remember the pre BREXIT bed wetting where people thought the port of Dover would be closed, and that would be the end of the World? We have over four HUNDRED working ports in the UK.

MINIMISE and REROUTE.
 
Talking of flexibility - does anyone remember the pre BREXIT bed wetting where people thought the port of Dover would be closed, and that would be the end of the World? We have over four HUNDRED working ports in the UK.

MINIMISE and REROUTE.

Of the 400 how many could accommodate the volume and different types of traffic ?
 

Yokel

LE
Of the 400 how many could accommodate the volume and different types of traffic ?

I have no idea. Clearly some ports are more important than others, such as those than can deal with very large vessels or supply oil refineries.

My point was that traffic can be rerouted, and minimised. Yet media scare mongering makes it worse be encouraging panic buying. It also increases the pressure on the named port or whatever.
 

Yokel

LE
I suppose this is as good a place as any other to ask this - does Britain have total radar coverage of the coastline, all ten thousand miles of it? I am sure I saw a TV programme years ago that said we did not. What about drug, people, and other smugglers, terrorists and foreign SF, ships dumping chemicals, and vessels in difficulty?
 

Yokel

LE
Three posts by @Filthy_contract seem to be appropriate for this discussion. They all relate to Cold War preparations:

1. Here

Utility companies - then in public ownership - started to physically reinforce facilities against both sabotage and bomb damage, and staff their offsite control centres. Bore holes would be readied for use. Electrical Boards and the National Grid would ensure key switch gear spares were protected against EMP.

2. Here

Remember, it was only in the mid 1980s onwards were concrete efforts made to harden RAF airfields against direct attack and some airfields, such as RAF Leeming, only had NATO funded work completed in the early 1990s. Public infrastructure built between 1960s - 1990s often had defensive/protective measures designed into them; others less so. A lot of CNI - eg water reticulation and the railway network which often dates from the Victorian era - would require effort during TTW to harden them from attack and spares would be dispersed from central stores - firstly to put them closer to the area of need but also to provide a measure of redundancy. British Rail had a network of hardened network control centres across the UK; some of the rather ugly trackside architecture of the 1970s looked that way as it was designed to protect critical switchgear and control facilities. The National Grid had air-gap high speed breaker gear to protect transformers which would survive EMP; not today.


3. Here

A lot of CNI (eg water reticulation and the rail network) were hardened in the late 1930s. Some of these features can be seen today - such as blast walls around exchanges, switch gear and pumping stations; ground floor windows bricked up in continuously manned buildings to serve as refuges; concrete roof slabs etc. These measures, of course, were to mitigate the effects of conventional bombing. From the late 1960s onwards architectural guidance was given by MPWB (later PSA) about blast protection from nuclear weapons, and PF from radiation and this coincided with the extensive and Brutalist use of ferro-concrete which has a high PF and blast and shockwave resistance. The BT tower is an example, as is the very large microwave tower in Harpenden, which you can see from the M40 near High Wycombe. This was part of a protected LOS comms network. In the 1970s (qv 'Defence of the Realm' by Chris Andrews) it as realised that Spetznaz would be positioned or landed in the UK to forment unrest, take out key leaders and to disrupt public life by attacking CNI. During TTW, TA and Home Defence Forces, supplemented by RAF Personnel, inter alia, would be deployed as Key Point Guards - to protect CNI from sabotage by Spetznaz, loopy 5th Columnists and 'Peaceniks'. Very early in my career during a TACEVAL, I was deployed with a section to guard some very elderly GWR rolling stock in a siding in Much Wenlock (I think) which contained a mobile 'post ERT' telephone exchange, which would lay cables trackside across the country and restore a telephone network for the railways and LA.

Post Cold War, there has been little official encouragement to protect CNI against EMP; partly because of the sense it isn't needed and partly because public utilities in the UK have been privatised and largely deregulated, so they are unlikely to spend large sums of money protecting against an infinitesimal risk. The sad thing is that 30 years on, we may have lost many of these skills to protect CNI.
 

anglo

LE
If they are alert/conscious they can refuse treatment. To force treatment is assault.

If they are not alert/conscious you can take any measure within the bounds of your training to render aid. Yes, there is assumed consent, as you expect any person would accept treatment if they were alert/conscious.

No first aider has been prosecuted in the UK for rendering aid, within the bounds of their training. Even when the casualty has died or suffered life changing injuries there is no comeback on the first aider where they have acted in good faith.
The only examples I have found of people getting sued

Posted By Bob Henson


Sally, thanks for your post, here are some brief details of first aiders being sued. I have no specific information yet about first aiders being prosecuted (offences against the criminal law) as opposed to sued (claims for civil damages). I am aware that various people have been jailed for impersonating paramedics etc, (sadly these nutters do exist!) this is one reason why giving a blanket legal immunity to first aiders is problematical.

Cattley v St John’s Ambulance 1988

Sean Cattley was 15 when he entered a schoolboy motor cycle scrambling event in 1984. During the event he fell from his motor cycle landing on his back. What happened next was subject to some disagreement by the various parties in court. It appears that Sean was moved off the track without the use of a stretcher or body board. He was subsequently admitted to Stoke Mandeville hospital with spinal injuries. He made a partial recovery but has long term problems as a result of the accident.

In 1988 he sued St John’s Ambulance for negligence on the grounds that being moved in the manner that he was, seriously exacerbated his injuries. Sean sued for the sum of £45,000 to assist him with the cost of travelling to Stoke Mandeville, the result of the delay in his studies on his ability to find work etc. as well as for general pain and suffering. The case was heard in the High Court on 25th November, 1988.

The judge ruled that the St John’s ambulance volunteers had acted professionally and in accordance with their training manual which he described as “the first aider’s bible”. The judge found them not to be negligent and gave judgement for the defendants. The next version of the training manual was more specific about how to treat a casualty with suspected spinal injuries, viz. DO NOT move the casualty from the position found unless they are in danger or become unconscious. If they must be moved, use a scoop stretcher, or a modified log roll. I guess that you cannot hold anyone to be negligent for failing to anticipate the next release of the manual! Personally, having read the transcript of the court proceedings, I feel a lot of sympathy for the unfortunate Mr Cattley.

This case has become a precedent in case law and has subsequently been referred to through the world. The crucial words in the judgement were that first aiders would be not be negligent if they acted in accordance with their training with the standards expected of an ordinary skilled first aider. The standard being defined as that in the manual used for their training.


Leonard v Girl Guide Association 1995

In 1995 an eleven year old girl guide attended her first camp. During that camp she burnt her leg whilst cooking sausages. She sued on the grounds that the first aid treatment was inadequate and that there were insufficient levels of instruction and supervision. The case was heard at Truro County Court on 25th May, 1995.

The judge dismissed the action and congratulated the Guiders on their prompt first aid treatment of the casualty.


Loyley v St John’s Ambulance

Perhaps it is incorrect to use the above notation since the case did reach court, the case was, I understand, lodged and scheduled to be heard at the High Court.

This is a particularly tragic case and concerns Anna Loyley who was an extremely fit and talented young woman. Anna competed in the Bath half marathon in 1998 and collapsed on the finishing line.

Two St John’s volunteers arrived in a short period of time with an AED (automated external defibrillator- gives electric shocks to restart the heart). They were unable to resuscitate Anna, she was immediately transferred to hospital and pronounced to be dead.

There has been extensive discussion about this case particularly surrounding an alleged delay in applying the AED and actuating the shock. The Loyley family felt that the St John’s volunteers had failed to use the AED promptly and correctly.

In 2001 court action was commenced for £400,000. The case was settled out of court and St John’s issued a statement. The complete statement was published in the Bath Chronicle on 20th October, 2001. Briefly it stated that, as a tribute to Anna, St John would allocate a sum from its budgeted programme for training of personnel in the use of defibrillators, such a fund to be known as The Anna Loyley Memorial Fund. The sum was not specified.

It is apparent from reading the detail that the Loyley family were not interested in the money for themselves. The case seems to have been initiated to kickstart action for a change in the legislation surrounding major sporting events such as the Bath half marathon. Their view is that a much greater presence of professional medical support is needed at these events. The legislation regarding first aid provision at football matches was changed following Hillsborough and the Loyley’s view seems to be that similar legislation is required for this type of mass athletic event. France has more robust requirements and has a very low incidence of deaths in this type of event.
 

A.N.Other

War Hero
The only examples I have found of people getting sued

Posted By Bob Henson


Sally, thanks for your post, here are some brief details of first aiders being sued. I have no specific information yet about first aiders being prosecuted (offences against the criminal law) as opposed to sued (claims for civil damages). I am aware that various people have been jailed for impersonating paramedics etc, (sadly these nutters do exist!) this is one reason why giving a blanket legal immunity to first aiders is problematical.

Cattley v St John’s Ambulance 1988

Sean Cattley was 15 when he entered a schoolboy motor cycle scrambling event in 1984. During the event he fell from his motor cycle landing on his back. What happened next was subject to some disagreement by the various parties in court. It appears that Sean was moved off the track without the use of a stretcher or body board. He was subsequently admitted to Stoke Mandeville hospital with spinal injuries. He made a partial recovery but has long term problems as a result of the accident.

In 1988 he sued St John’s Ambulance for negligence on the grounds that being moved in the manner that he was, seriously exacerbated his injuries. Sean sued for the sum of £45,000 to assist him with the cost of travelling to Stoke Mandeville, the result of the delay in his studies on his ability to find work etc. as well as for general pain and suffering. The case was heard in the High Court on 25th November, 1988.

The judge ruled that the St John’s ambulance volunteers had acted professionally and in accordance with their training manual which he described as “the first aider’s bible”. The judge found them not to be negligent and gave judgement for the defendants. The next version of the training manual was more specific about how to treat a casualty with suspected spinal injuries, viz. DO NOT move the casualty from the position found unless they are in danger or become unconscious. If they must be moved, use a scoop stretcher, or a modified log roll. I guess that you cannot hold anyone to be negligent for failing to anticipate the next release of the manual! Personally, having read the transcript of the court proceedings, I feel a lot of sympathy for the unfortunate Mr Cattley.

This case has become a precedent in case law and has subsequently been referred to through the world. The crucial words in the judgement were that first aiders would be not be negligent if they acted in accordance with their training with the standards expected of an ordinary skilled first aider. The standard being defined as that in the manual used for their training.


Leonard v Girl Guide Association 1995

In 1995 an eleven year old girl guide attended her first camp. During that camp she burnt her leg whilst cooking sausages. She sued on the grounds that the first aid treatment was inadequate and that there were insufficient levels of instruction and supervision. The case was heard at Truro County Court on 25th May, 1995.

The judge dismissed the action and congratulated the Guiders on their prompt first aid treatment of the casualty.


Loyley v St John’s Ambulance

Perhaps it is incorrect to use the above notation since the case did reach court, the case was, I understand, lodged and scheduled to be heard at the High Court.

This is a particularly tragic case and concerns Anna Loyley who was an extremely fit and talented young woman. Anna competed in the Bath half marathon in 1998 and collapsed on the finishing line.

Two St John’s volunteers arrived in a short period of time with an AED (automated external defibrillator- gives electric shocks to restart the heart). They were unable to resuscitate Anna, she was immediately transferred to hospital and pronounced to be dead.

There has been extensive discussion about this case particularly surrounding an alleged delay in applying the AED and actuating the shock. The Loyley family felt that the St John’s volunteers had failed to use the AED promptly and correctly.

In 2001 court action was commenced for £400,000. The case was settled out of court and St John’s issued a statement. The complete statement was published in the Bath Chronicle on 20th October, 2001. Briefly it stated that, as a tribute to Anna, St John would allocate a sum from its budgeted programme for training of personnel in the use of defibrillators, such a fund to be known as The Anna Loyley Memorial Fund. The sum was not specified.

It is apparent from reading the detail that the Loyley family were not interested in the money for themselves. The case seems to have been initiated to kickstart action for a change in the legislation surrounding major sporting events such as the Bath half marathon. Their view is that a much greater presence of professional medical support is needed at these events. The legislation regarding first aid provision at football matches was changed following Hillsborough and the Loyley’s view seems to be that similar legislation is required for this type of mass athletic event. France has more robust requirements and has a very low incidence of deaths in this type of event.
Thanks. They're good examples, as other than the out of court settlement the judge found that the treatment given was withing the bounds of the individual's training. They didn't face criminal charges. They acted appropriately (given their training) and with good intentions.

Thanks to the example set by American ambulance chaser lawyers in the 80's & 90's people started taking every opportunity to make a claim. Remember the "where there's blame there's a claim"? If there is any chance of covering costs or making a profit from the incident, people are encouraged to do so.

It's a screwed up world but we shouldn't be afraid of helping within the bounds of and with the protection of our training.
 

Yokel

LE
Another aspect of national resilience - MACA at sea:

The combined training with the Metropolitan Police in the Channel proved extremely useful for both the Navy and UK’s largest police force.

The Met used Tamar as their ‘floating headquarters’, turning her into a command and control vessel to marshal their RIB speed boats.

The latter are used to the sheltered waters of the Thames – their normal domain ends at Dartford Creek – and found operating in the choppy Channel rather difficult.

“Working with the police proved to be a new experience for all parties concerned – the main fruit was a much greater understanding of each other’s capabilities and how to most effectively make use of these depending on the operational context,” Lieutenant Commander Hutchinson added.
 

Yokel

LE
The pictures of SAR Sea Kings in the yellow scheme of the RAF SAR force has made me think. Are all those bases still available for use as helicopter landing sites if needed?

Additionally, they also had a secondary function of moving emergency service and medical personnel in crises. Do the privately operated SAR cabs have that role as part of the contract?
 

A.N.Other

War Hero
The pictures of SAR Sea Kings in the yellow scheme of the RAF SAR force has made me think. Are all those bases still available for use as helicopter landing sites if needed?

Additionally, they also had a secondary function of moving emergency service and medical personnel in crises. Do the privately operated SAR cabs have that role as part of the contract?
The MCA helicopters which support mountain rescue operations can lift team members to remote locations. We train with them when we can. They even train with the search dogs to winch them and their handlers.
 
I need lockdowns and such to end so I can have a night in. Haven't socialised as much in my life as I have since I've been told I can't.
 

Yokel

LE
The disruption of supply chains caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a number of manufacturers to rethink their supply chains - hopefully this includes key areas of industry.

Commenting on the findings, Richard Austin, BDO’s head of manufacturing said: “The supply delays experienced by UK manufacturers at the start of the pandemic were a wake-up call, prompting many operators to confront the risks involved in over-relying on single suppliers for key components. This was particularly true in cases where suppliers were geographically very distant.

“Our survey has found that many manufacturers are actively formulating strategies to diversify their supply chains and opting for dual or multiple sourcing for critical supplies....
 

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