The Morning Report

Monday, August 25, 2014

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INCIDENTS



Grand Teton National Park (WY)
Body Of Missing Concession Employee Found

Search teams from the park and Teton County Search and Rescue found the body of Aleksandr “Sasha” Sagiev, 20, of Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, below Cache Couloir in Cache Gulch on Friday, August 22nd. He’d been the subject of a three-day-long search.

Sagiev, a seasonal employee of Dornan’s in Moose, Wyoming, was reported missing on the morning of Monday, August 18th. He had not been seen by coworkers since the previous afternoon.

The preliminary investigation and search focused on areas in and around Moose. New information received on Thursday afternoon indicated that Sagiev may have started a hike from Taggart Lake Trailhead around 9 a.m. on Monday. With a break in the inclement weather, an aerial search was conducted Thursday afternoon over Taggart and Delta lakes, but no sign of Sagiev was found.

Approximately 60 searchers gathered on Friday morning to explore areas where Sagiev may have hiked in the Tetons. For a second day, the weather was extremely rainy with dense clouds covering the Teton peaks.

Search teams found Sagiev’s body that afternoon in Glacier Gulch about a third of a mile west of Delta Lake.  He was declared dead at the scene by the searchers in consultation with the park’s medical director. The circumstances of Sagiev’s death are still under investigation. 

Sagiev was wearing the metallic blue “Sochi” jacket described in missing person flyers distributed to the public, which helped in locating his body in the rocky terrain.

[Submitted by Jackie Skaggs, Public Affairs Officer]


Crater Lake National Park (OR)
Man Arrested Following Violent Disturbance At Lodge

Park dispatch was contacted by Crater Lake Lodge staff around 6 p.m. on July 10th and advised that a man was causing a disturbance at the service bar in the Great Hall, yelling at staff and visitors. 

Chief Ranger Curt Dimmick responded. While en route, he learned that the man had begun throwing things from the bar, including pitchers of water, a sales computer, and a credit card printer.  He was subsequently advised that the man had also struck a visitor in the head with a crutch. 

As he entered the Great Hall, Dimmick saw that the man, later identified as Donald Taylor of Medford, Oregon, was standing in front of the bar, leaning on a crutch and yelling obscenities at two employees. Taylor immediately turned to Dimmick, started advancing across the room with the crutch under his arm and began yelling “I am going to [expletive] kill you!  You are going to die tonight!” 

Dimmick ordered Taylor to stop and get on the floor several times as he advanced, repeatedly yelling the same threats. When Taylor was only a few feet away and still refusing to stop, Dimmick used his taser to put him on the floor. Ranger John Neumann soon arrived and handcuffed him.

There were about 50 visitors and Lodge staff present during the incident. Lodge staff had cleared most of the people from the Great Hall and secured the doors into the restaurant just beyond the bar to provide for the safety of guests while lodge and restaurant managers had kept Taylor occupied, waiting for rangers to arrive. 

The man who was struck in the head with the crutch was a minister who had attempted to talk to Taylor and calm him down.  When the minister spoke to him, Taylor first tried to spit in his face and then swung his crutch at the minister’s head.  The minister ducked, but the crutch still hit the top of his head, causing a one inch laceration and contusion.  The minister declined medical treatment. 

Rangers later located Taylor’s truck, which was parked immediately in front of the lodge in the loading zone.  Inside the truck were a loaded .22 caliber rifle and an unloaded 7 mm. rifle with two dozen rounds of ammunition.  

Taylor was charged with assault, resisting or impeding an officer, disorderly conduct and vandalism. Taylor did approximately $2500 in damage to lodge property. On July 28th, Taylor pled guilty to all charges.  His sentencing is scheduled for September 2th. He has been in jail since the incident.

The court has already ordered him to undergo a mental health evaluation. He told the judge he was having a bad day and had too much to drink after learning his ex-wife was trying to get sole custody of their son.

Rangers had prior contact with Taylor. Last November, he entered the lodge after it was closed by entering a side door that may have been left unlocked. He spent the night with his dog in one of the lodge’s rooms, where he was found by concessioner maintenance staff the next morning. He was cited for trespass at the time.

[Submitted by Curt R. Dimmick, Chief Park Ranger]


Cape Hatteras National Seashore (NC)
Virginia Man Drowns Near Rodanthe Pier

Late on the morning of Friday, August 22nd, park staff and Chicamacomico Banks VFD and Dare County EMS personnel were dispatched to the beach north of the Rodanthe Pier, where an unconscious man had been pulled from the ocean.

Andrew Fens, 32, of North Chesterfield, Virginia, had been found face down in the water. Family members and bystanders pulled him to shore and began CPR, which was continued by emergency responders. He was pronounced dead shortly thereafter.

Fens was last seen in two to three feet of water and then was suddenly seen face down, with no apparent cause. The medical examiner has ruled this a drowning with contributing medical-related causes.

[Submitted by Paul Stevens, Chief Ranger]


NEWS AND NOTES



Director/Deputy Directors
A Founders Day Message From The Director

Today is Founder’s Day, the anniversary of the day when the Service’s founding legislation was signed in 1916.

Director Jarvis has shared his thoughts on Founder’s Day with employees and friends of the National Park Service:

*****

Hello everyone, and happy Founders’ Day--our 98th birthday. I hope you will take some time to celebrate this milestone and reflect on the important contributions you have made to ensure the success of the National Park Service.

The passing of another year means that we’re getting closer to commemorating 100 years of the National Park Service in 2016. As our Centennial celebration draws near, I am focused on the reason why we and our partners, including the National Park Foundation, are working so hard to prepare for a second century. Together, we must attract and engage the next generation of park visitors, supporters, and advocates, who will enjoy and protect these special places during the next 100 years of the National Park Service.

This goal keeps me up at night, but it also gets me ready to go each morning.

I am looking to every member of the NPS family to help cultivate and engage the next generation of park visitors and park stewards. We all need to plan programs and activities, and align existing programs and activities, to support that goal. Collectively, we can and we will introduce young people to the work that we do and get them excited about it.

Some of you might be thinking, “Hey, I thought that the Centennial was going to be a PR campaign developed by the National Park Foundation.” The Find Your Park Campaign is one exciting piece of our Centennial celebration, but it is not all we are doing. Not by a long shot. The Find Your Park Campaign will be a spotlight on the National Park Service, but we need to be ready to shine in that spotlight. We need to be ready to greet new and younger visitors with stories and experiences that are relevant and exciting to them. This is how we’ll actually create this new generation of engaged park visitors and stewards.

The success of the Centennial depends on everyone pitching in to get this done. We are all on this journey of reintroduction and renewal together, and I am honored to work by your side as we go forward.

During last week’s webchat, I was excited to unveil our Centennial logo – another tool that we can use to shine the spotlight on the National Park Service during our Centennial celebration. The Centennial logo will help us highlight our Centennial activities and to raise awareness about this significant event, not only in our organization’s history, but also in the history of our nation.

Today, in concert with the National Park Foundation, we are launching a retail licensing program for the Centennial logo.  Our park partners, cooperating associations, friends groups and concessioners can now develop products for sale in parks using the Centennial logo.  These products will be on shelves starting in 2015. Keep in mind that all retail uses of the Centennial logo must have a license from the National Park Foundation. Additional guidance has been provided directly to regional and park staff who work with our in-park retail and education partners, such as concessions specialists and regional cooperating association coordinators.

In the near future, we will start to use the new logo to brand our Centennial activities and materials.  Again, additional guidance will be forthcoming this fall on non-retail uses of the centennial logo.

Be sure to visit www.nps.gov/centennial to learn more about the centennial plans. And thanks to National Park Foundation, I am excited to share that we have a special Centennial gift for each of you.  They’re headed your way soon, so be on the lookout for it.

Thank you for the work you do each and every day that brings us ever closer to our Centennial goal.

Learning and Development Division
Albright-Wirth Grant Program FY 2015 Cycle Now Open

The Horace M. Albright-Conrad L. Wirth Grant Program (AWGP) is a prestigious developmental opportunity that annually awards funding for personal and career development projects to National Park Service employees.  The AWGP is funded by the National Park Foundation, and administered by the NPS, WASO Office of Learning and Development. 

The FY 2015 Albright-Wirth Grant application period opened on August 20th and will close on September 26th.  Applications must be submitted online and are available through the AWGP SharePoint site (http://share.nps.gov/awg).  Supervisory approval is required for all project proposals.  Please visit the SharePoint site for additional program information including specific program guidelines, rating criteria, and frequently asked questions (FAQs). 

Please be advised that funding amounts for FY 2014 are not to exceed:

  • $3,500 for individual grants
  • $7,000 for partner grants (two individuals)
  • $10,500 for team grants (three or more individuals)

For additional information regarding the Albright-Wirth Grant, please contact Lisa Nicol at (202) 354-1998, or Lisa_Nicol@nps.gov/.

[Submitted by Lisa M. Nicol, Employee Development Specialist]

 More Information...
Fire and Aviation Management
NPS Payment Team Supports Fire Operations

One of the NPS payment teams, led by Rose Pollard, was recently in Prineville, Oregon, processing millions of dollars in vendor payments for BIA, BLM, and NPS suppression incidents.  The team was mobilized to Prineville to provide payment support for the BIA and BLM in Region 6, covering Oregon and Washington. 

Arriving in Prineville on July 30th, the team extended to 21 days and traveled back to their home units on Sunday, August 17th.  While working from the BLM Prineville office, the team processed $12,551,377 for 39 BLM fires and three BIA fires.  In addition, the team also processed a total of $1,795,162 in vendor payments for NPS suppression incidents at Crater Lake, Yosemite, and Saguaro National Parks. 

Most of the payments processed were for equipment such as dozers, water tenders, masticators, weed-washing machines, excavators, mobile sleepers, skidgens, and engines, but also included payments for hand crews, land use agreements, mobile shower units, catering units, and porta-potties.

The National Park Service coordinates three mobile payment teams that provide administrative support and on-the-spot payment capability for emergency incidents.  These payment teams are the only teams of this nature in the United States.  Use of these teams has facilitated the economic solvency of communities adjacent to public lands impacted by emergency incidents. 

The payment teams, in close coordination with the Accounting Operations Center, also ensure that vendors are paid quickly while reducing the hardship and workload on the local administrative staff. 

Earlier this year, Team Pollard was also mobilized to the San Juan Fire in Arizona and to the Asaayi Lake Fire in New Mexico, where they processed $493,952 and $828,446 in vendor payments respectively.  It’s probable that the payment teams and AOC will process vendor payments in excess of $15 million this fire season.

Team members in Prineville included Vicky Smith, Marcus Banks, Lisa Wilson, Jamie Rinehart, Rachel Acker, Christine Peters, Caval Farrell, and Lee Chase.   

For more information about the NPS payment teams, please contact Christine Peters, 208.407.6558, or at christine_peters@nps.gov

[Submitted by Christine Peters, Incident Business Specialist]


CAREER OPPORTUNITIES



North Cascades National Park (WA)
GS-0025-12/13 Chief Ranger

North Cascades National Park has issued an announcement for a chief ranger.

Click on the link below for a copy of the announcement with full details on duties, area information, and procedures for applying.

It closes on September 1st.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park (HI)
GL-0025-9 Protection Ranger (Lateral)

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is seeking candidates interested in a lateral transfer into a permanent  protection ranger position.

As a Level 1 commissioned ranger, the person selected will be responsible for performing law enforcement duties, including detection, investigation, apprehension, and prosecution under applicable laws, rules and regulations. She/he will also be required to have knowledge and skills in emergency operations,  backcountry patrol, and search and rescue operations.

Work will be performed on a rotating schedule, including nights, weekends and holidays. This position is subject to a modified required occupancy, which mandates residence within a ten minute response time. Permanent change of station (PCS) moving expenses will be authorized.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is located on the Island of Hawaii, with the center located at an elevation of 4,000 feet on the summit of Kilauea Volcano.  Cost of living is generally 15-35% higher than the continental United States.  Temperatures vary from 54-73° F. in summer to 49-68° F. in winter.  Rainfall averages 95” a year. 

Special consideration: The area of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is subject to high concentrations of volcanic fumes, especially sulfur dioxide gasses.  The fumes are known to be hazardous to unborn fetus, and persons with heart and respiratory problems.  Long-term effects on normal healthy persons are not known.

Interested applicants should send the following documents:

  • Copy of your Level I law enforcement commission
  • Any  certifications (such as EMT, CPR, Red Card, Gray Card Helicopter Crewmember, and instructor certifications).
  • OF-612 Optional Application for Employment, resume, or equivalent
  • Copy of most recent SF-50 Notification of Personnel Action
  • Copy of your most recent performance appraisal

Application packets may be submitted via email or by mail.  Application packets must be dated (email) or postmarked (mail) on or before  September 19th.  Submit electronic application packets to John_ Broward@nps.gov  or mail packets to John Broward, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, P.O. Box 52, Hawaii National Park, HI 96718.

For more information regarding the position, please contact John Broward at 808-985-6371 or via email.