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World renowned expert to address conference 26 September 2008

Emergency Services Joint Control RoomA WORLD renowned expert in the management of major incidents is hosting a three-day conference in the Isle of Man next month.

Steve Gregory has acted as a tactical adviser in the aftermath of international disasters such as the Asian tsunami and terrorist bombings in Egypt and London. The former police inspector has also played a pivotal role in investigations into numerous high-profile incidents in the UK, including rail and aircraft crashes, fires and floods.

Mr Gregory will share his experience and expertise with a local audience from October 13 to 15. The Major Incident Management conference will be attended by members of the Island’s emergency services, government agencies, private enterprise and voluntary organisations. The event is being organised and funded by the Department of Home Affairs to update the understanding, skills and knowledge of key personnel in the Island.

Mr Gregory, a manager and adviser during the Paddington rail crash, Boscastle floods and Buncefield oil depot fire, will be joined by other specialist guest speakers from the UK and Isle of Man. They will discuss topics such as event safety, the legal implications of disaster management, tactical decision-making under pressure, medical intervention and managing stress.

Minister for Home Affairs Adrian Earnshaw MHK said:

‘It is vital that the Isle of Man is equipped to plan and co-ordinate a response in the event of a major incident occurring. It could potentially take some time for outside help to arrive so we have a responsibility to ensure that local knowledge is as up to date as it possibly can be. With that in mind I am delighted that an individual of Mr Gregory’s calibre is heading up our conference. His CV is very impressive and I’m sure those who attend will learn a great deal from his personal insight into some of the world’s biggest incidents of recent years.’

The management conference, organised by the Emergency Planning Office at the Department of Home Affairs, is already fully subscribed. Assistant Emergency Planning Officer Ian Young said:

‘We appreciate that it’s not just the emergency services who respond to major incidents in the Isle of Man. We advocate a multi-agency approach whereby officers work in partnership, combining skills and resources in order to achieve positive outcomes. The Department of Home Affairs stages a course on this scale every two or three years in order to refresh local skills and keep pace with current thinking. The quality of the visiting guest speakers is highlighted by the fact that they are all regularly invited to address the Emergency Planning College in Yorkshire. This is an opportunity to learn from the experts and put in place measures aimed at maintaining community safety in the Island.’

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