The Morning Report

Monday, July 07, 2014

Recent Editions  

INCIDENTS



East Coast Areas
Outer Banks Parks Return To Normal Following Hurricane

Hurricane Arthur passed over the Outer Banks late last week, causing some damage but not significantly affecting park operations at either Cape Lookout or the Outer Banks Group.

Cape Lookout NS – Effective yesterday, the following areas resumed operations on their normal schedules:

  • Harkers Island, Beaufort, and Light Station Visitor Centers.
  • Passenger ferry service provided by Island Express Ferry Service from Harkers Island and Beaufort to the Cape Lookout Light Station, and Shackleford Banks.
  • Vehicle ferries departing from Davis and Atlantic.
  • Keepers’ Quarters Museum.
  • South Core Banks and North Core Banks. Camping permitted under normal regulations.
  • Portsmouth Village.
  • Off-road vehicles were again permitted to operate as normal on North and South Core Banks.

These areas were partly opened:

  • Shackleford Banks opened to day use, but no camping was permitted.
  • Long Point Cabins 5 through 20 reopened for occupancy Sunday night. Cabins 1 through 4 remained closed pending repairs.
  • Great Island Cabins 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 9, 12, 17, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, and 26 reopened for occupancy on Sunday night. Cabins 1, 5, 8, 10, 11, 13, 14, 15, 16, 18, and 19 were closed until repairs could be completed.

Due to damages, safety concerns or resource protection needs, the following areas remained closed:

  • Cape Village Historic District
  • Old Drum Inlet beach area
  • North Core Banks for a quarter mile south of Ocracoke Inlet due to a deep tidal cut.

Outer Banks Group – The Outer Banks Group of national parks – Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Wright Brothers National Memorial and Fort Raleigh National Historic Site – have resumed normal operations:

  • Wright Brothers National Memorial and Fort Raleigh National Historic Site are open and have resumed normal hours of operation. 
  • In Cape Hatteras National Seashore, all facilities in the Bodie Island District, the Hatteras District, and the Ocracoke District are open and have resumed normal hours of operation.
  • All ocean and sound-side beach areas have been evaluated for safe access for both pedestrians and off-road vehicles.  The beaches are open to pedestrian access throughout the park unless otherwise posted.  The following beach access ramps are open to off-road vehicles – Ramps 4, 27, 30, 38, 43, 44, 67 and 70.
  • Cape Hatteras Lighthouse is open for climbing. Hatteras Visitor Center and bookstore and the Buxton off-road vehicle permit office reopened on normal schedules yesterday. The lighthouse beach lifeguard operation has returned to normal hours of operation.

[Submitted by Cyndy Holda, Outer Banks Group; Pat Kenney, Cape Lookout]


Grand Canyon National Park (AZ)
AED Utilized In Successful Resuscitation

On June 4th, a 66-year-old man waiting for a shuttle bus near the South Rim Visitor Center suddenly collapsed.  While family and visitors began CPR, others ran into the visitor center to get help. Interpretive Ranger Robb Hannawacker responded with an AED and other EMS supplies, resulting in one shock applied prior the arrival of EMS staff. 

While the initial shock seemed to revive the man, his condition soon deteriorated. Following 30 minutes of advanced cardiac life support treatment, including several more shocks and rounds of drugs,  he was deemed stable enough to transport and survived the incident.

Earlier in the day, rangers worked an unsuccessful resuscitation for a 55-year-old woman with a significant medical history in one of the South Rim hotel rooms.  Rangers also conducted two helicopter medevac missions for visitors in remote areas of the canyon, completed an investigation and body recovery of a previously reported nut allergy fatality on a commercial river trip, and facilitated all-day skill stations and leadership activities for 36 teenagers enrolled in the Arizona Leadership Education and Development Academy, a challenging youth program sponsored by the Arizona Chapter of the FBI National Academy.

[Submitted by Brandon Torres, Branch Chief of Emergency Services]


George Washington Birthplace National Monument (VA)
One-Year-Old Rescued From Near Drowning

Chief Ranger Wayne Rose overheard a county radio transmission concerning a 911 call originating from the park’s Potomac River beach around 7 p.m. on the evening of June 30th. The caller reported that a boy had nearly drowned after falling into the water. 

Rose arrived on scene within a few minutes and was met by a father holding a one-year-old boy. The child was conscious, breathing and coughing.  Rose learned that the boy had fallen into a tidal stream that feeds into the Potomac River. He was pulled out by a family friend and was reported to be blue and not breathing.  The child’s mother performed CPR and restored his breathing. 

Rose monitored the boy’s condition and stood by with CPR equipment until volunteer EMS arrived.  The child was transported by ambulance to a landing zone ten miles outside of the park and then transported by helicopter to Fairfax Hospital.  He was still hospitalized the following day, but was listed in good condition. 

[Submitted by Wayne Rose, Chief Ranger]


Buffalo National Scenic River (AR)
Driver Killed in Single-Vehicle Accident

Ranger Ben Henthorne overheard radio traffic from Newton County Fire Rescue on the afternoon of June 20th concerning a motor vehicle accident on State Highway 123 at Carver, located within the park’s boundaries. Ranger Melissa Moses joined him in responding.

A witness who was driving in the opposite lane reported that the driver of a Toyota pickup swerved into her lane, overcorrected, then swerved back into the opposing lane and hit the guardrail. The vehicle went down an embankment and hit a tree on the driver’s side, causing significant damage, then overturned. There were no other passengers in the vehicle.

Northern Arkansas Regional Medical paramedics and Hasty Volunteer Fire Department and Harrison Fire Department personnel conducted extrication operations utilizing a Jaws of Life tool to peel the roof off of the vehicle back and gain access to the driver. Prior to extrication, they had to anchor the vehicle to a tree due to the steep uneven terrain.

The driver, a 49-year-old man from Little Rock, Arkansas, was pronounced dead at the scene. He was not wearing his seatbelt. The Arkansas State Police are leading the investigation.

[Submitted by Karen Bradford, Chief Ranger]


NEWS AND NOTES



Black Canyon Of The Gunnison National Park (CO)
Park Astronomy Festival Draws Hundreds

The annual Black Canyon of the Gunnison Astronomy Festival, held this year from Thursday, June 25th, through Saturday, June 28th, provided nearly 700 visitors and locals with solar viewing, kids astronomy programs, planet hikes, “learn the sky” workshops, evening talks, night sky viewing, and night sky photography workshops.

Each year, the festival grows, not only in participation but in the enthusiasm of the various presenters.

National Park Service rangers, astronomy volunteers, and astronomers from the Black Canyon Astronomical Society of Montrose used the magical backdrop of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison to showcase Colorado’s clear skies.

Black Canyon is a critical location for the protection of clear dark skies. The astronomy festival celebrates this resource and inspires visitors locally and globally to realize the importance of dark sky preservation. 

[Submitted by Sandra Snell-Dobert, Chief of Interpretation, Education, and Technology]

 More Information...
Everglades National Park (FL)
Park Co-Hosts 2014 Pine Rockland Symposium

Everglades National Park co-hosted the 2014 Pine Rockland Symposium from June 26th to June 28th. The mission of the Pine Rockland Symposium focused on bringing together multiple agencies and individuals interested in “maintaining and restoring pine rockland communities, their associated species, and the natural processes, most notably fire, upon which they rely.”

The three-day conference included oral and poster presentations and field sessions in Everglades National Park, Key Deer National Wildlife Refuge, and Miami Dade County preserves.  Everglades fire staff donned bug jackets and took participants to one of the largest tracts (20,000 acres) of the critically imperiled pine rockland ecosystem in South Florida, located within Everglades National Park. 

The pine rockland ecosystem is found only in South Florida, the Turks and Caicos, and the Bahamas.  Composed predominately of Florida slash pine (Pinus elliotii var. densa), the pine rockland community in Everglades National Park has a diverse understory of both temperate and tropical plants, many of which are endemic or only found in pine rocklands.  As a fire-dependent ecosystem, pine rocklands require fire to maintain diversity and keep it from transitioning into hardwood hammock.

 In 1958, the first agency approved prescribed burn in National Park Service history was conducted in the pine rocklands of Everglades National Park to address changes in the vegetation due to fire exclusion.  Everglades’ pine rocklands is currently habitat for multiple threatened and endangered species and two rare butterflies, the Bartram’s hairstreak and Florida leafwing, soon to be federally listed as endangered.  

Everglades National Park’s fire management lan, available for public comment in mid-July, calls for a multi-year prescribed fire fuels treatment in order to restore and maintain healthy pinelands.

This year’s Pine Rockland Symposium “was a huge success because it brought together so many different groups from our community and allowed us to continue our collaboration,” said Maya Tupaj, the park’s fire ecologist. “We are continually working to learn from each other about this critically endangered ecosystem.”

The conference welcomed attendees representing local, state, and government agencies, the Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands, and private landowners interested in pine rockland management and conservation efforts.   

The diverse group included members of the National Park Service, US Geological Survey, US Fish and Wildlife Service, Miami Dade County Natural Areas Management and Environmentally Endangered Lands, The Nature Conservancy, Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden, Florida International University, University of Florida, Tropical Audubon Society, Florida Forest Service, Zoo Miami, the Institute for Regional Conservation, the Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands, private landowners, and many more.

For more information on Pine Rocklands, please visit: http://www.nps.gov/ever/naturescience/pineland.htm

For information on Pine Rocklands for kids, please visit: http://www.nps.gov/ever/forkids/pine-rocklands.htm

[Submitted by Katie Corrigan, Public Information Officer]


Division of Labor and Employee Relations
Steve Rosen Is Retiring

Steve Rosen is retiring on June 30th following a 31-year-career with the government, the last 15 years with the National Park Service.

Steve has served as the workers’ compensation program manager, organization development consultant, CORE PLUS program coordinator and mediator. 

He joined the NPS 15 years ago as the Pacific West/Alaska regional workers compensation manager after 16 years working with local and national offices of the Department of Labor, Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs, as a vocational rehabilitation specialist.

Steve described joining the NPS as a dream come true.  He brought unbridled enthusiasm for both the programs he managed and for the mission of the Service.  If you were lucky enough to work with Steve, you likely didn’t forget it.  His passion was contagious and unrelenting (in a good way).

In managing workers compensation and as serving as a mediator, Steve’s focus was on serving employees and particularly in serving employees in parks.   If an employee was hurt on the job, Steve did everything in his power to ensure that the employee received a high quality of care and service and had his or her claim processed quickly and correctly.  Most importantly, he wanted an injured employee to know someone cared. 

As a mediator or organizational development specialist, Steve focused on helping others find resolutions to problems and in helping organizations function in a constructive and productive manner.  Steve was about bringing people together.

In retirement, Steve will be traveling (and visiting the national parks he missed visiting as an employee), working on his garden, skiing, snorkeling, volunteering, smoking the occasional cigar, and enjoying life to the fullest.  After an extended break, you might see him back in parks as a volunteer, consultant and visitor.

Steve may be reached at steve.rosen@hotmail.com and steverosenconsultants@gmail.com .

[Submitted by David G. Davies]


Park Facility Management Division
Most Recent Edition Of Divisional Newsletter Now Out

The May/June issue of Park Facility Management Division Update is now available online. Included in this issue are:

Included in this issue:

  • Feature Story – Seasonal Requirements - Preparing Parks for Late Spring and Early Summer
  • Safety Space – The Rest of the story on Workplace Injuries
  • News You Can Use – Transportation Branch Publishing Alternative Funding Guides
  • SMAC Safe – Lawn Mowing Safety Tips
  • People Matters – Krista Sherwood joins PFMD on a detail assignment
  • Meet PFMD – Mary Hudson

Click on the link below for the website with both current and past editions of the newsletter

[Submitted by Steven J. Olig, Communications Analyst]

 More Information...
Park Cultural Resources Programs
June NPS Archeology Newsletter Posted

The June Archeology E-Gram (with images) is now available on the NPS Archeology Program website. 

This monthly newsletter contains information about archeological projects, training, awards, and other activities of interest to archeologists and others inside and outside national parks. This month we remember Mark Lynott, examine a footprint at Bryce Canyon National Park, visit excavations at a prospective national park, and more.

To read the June E-Gram, go to http://www.nps.gov/archeology/new.htm.

Previous issues of the Archeology E-Gram are also available at http://www.nps.gov/archeology/public/news.htm.

[Submitted by Karen Mudar, karen_mudar@nps.gov, 202-354-2103]


Redwood National and State Parks (CA)
Passing Of Retired Resource Management Chief Terry Hofstra

Terrence Douglas Hofstra, retired chief of resource management and science at Redwood National Park, passed away on June 3rd following a lengthy battle with cancer. 

Terry retired from the NPS on December 30, 2010, after 39 years of federal service, the last 30 at Redwood.

Terry was born on October 19, 1947, in Kansas City, Missouri, to Harold and Mary Ann Hofstra. He served in the United States Navy during the Vietnam era and was honorably discharged in March 1970.

He attended the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas, graduating in 1974, and began his federal service career as a fishery biologist with the Environmental Protection Agency in Dallas, Texas.  During this time he earned his master's degree in systematics and ecology from the University of Texas at Dallas. He met Marilyn Holden who also worked with EPA and they were married on September 24, 1977 in Decatur, Texas.

Terry began his career with the NPS, in 1979, as an ecologist for the Environmental Investigations Unit at Denver Service Center. In 1980, he applied for and was selected as the aquatic ecologist for Redwood, moving to Arcata, where he and Marilyn laid down roots and remained for the next 34 years.  

While at Redwood, Terry served as fish and wildlife branch chief and later as the chief of resource management and science.  In 1991, a major reorganization of two park divisions, technical services and resource management, was completed and Terry was selected to lead this new program. 

During his NPS career, Terry served as acting assistant superintendent at Olympic NP and detailed as acting superintendent at Channel Island NP.  Terry was awarded the Pacific West Region and the NPS Director’s Resource Manager of the Year awards, and in 2008 was recognized with the DOI Meritorious Service Award for his long and distinguished career in the NPS.

Terry enjoyed collaborating with his staff and researchers on resource projects and in getting out of the office and into the field.  He was an ecologist at heart, and though he was bound to the office by administrative duties, he always found time to get out into the field.  He had extensive knowledge on wildlife ecology and management particularly cougar ecology, helped craft the park’s bear management protocols, helped capture and study Roosevelt elk, and developed programs to protect threatened species such as the northern spotted owls, marbled murrelets, and Pacific Coast snowy plovers. 

In his “spare time” he participated in park prescribed burns as a member of the park’s fast action response team (a group of grey-haired FFT2s), and could be known to identify a plant or two.  He was particularly sensitive to and protective of cultural resources in the park.

Terry, in an email to park staff on the day of his retirement, said in part: “Since first arriving with the NPS in 1979, and especially since coming to Redwood in 1980, I have felt welcomed as a member of the NPS family.  I have to say THANKS to everyone I've had the honor of knowing and working with. One of my favorite quotes is by Carl Buehner – ‘They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel.’ All of you have made me feel great!”. 

Well Terry you made us all feel great and for that we are thankful to have worked for and with you.

Terry is survived by his wife Marilyn, daughters Krystyna and Amanda, his mother Mary Ann and brother Gordon, by his extended NPS family, and those having the good fortune to have worked with and known Terry over the years. 

A celebration of Terry’s life will be held at the Bayside Grange in Arcata, California on July 20th.  For more information please contact vicki_ozaki@nps.gov or sherry_romanini@nps.gov .

[Submitted by Leonel Arguello, Chief, Vegetation Management]


CAREER OPPORTUNITIES



Yellowstone National Park (ID,MT,WY)
GS-0025-12 District Ranger

Yellowstone National Park is currently advertising for a district ranger for the park’s West District, which is located at Yellowstone’s West Entrance. 

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

For more information, please contact Pete Webster (Pete_Webster@nps.gov) at 307-344-2124. 

It closes on July 22nd.
 More Information...
Cultural Resources, Partnership and Science
GS-0150/0170/0193-13 Supervisor (Term)

The Cultural Resources, Partnership and Science Directorate is seeking merit promotion candidates for a term supervisory interdisciplinary geographer/historian/archeologist position.

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

Please direct all inquiries relative to the position to Jamie Barnes, human resources specialist, at 1-303-985-6851?.

It closes on July 16th.
 More Information...
White Sands National Monument (NM)
GS-0025-9 Interpretive Ranger (Lateral)

White Sands National Monument is recruiting for a permanent, full-time interpretive ranger and is seeking individuals interested in a lateral reassignment.  

White Sands National Monument welcomes an average of 480,000 visitors per year. It is the most visited National Park Service site in New Mexico. White Sands is a unique geologic park where scientists work to reveal the secrets of this biologically, culturally, and geologically diverse treasure. Just in the past five years, researchers discovered more than 15 new species of moths, used the gypsum dunes as an analog to the gypsum dunes on Mars to gain a better understanding of the Red Planet, and employed cutting-edge imaging technology to penetrate the soil and learn more about the mammoth, dire wolf, and other Pleistocene mega-fauna trackways found in the dunefield. 

The interpretive program at White Sands shares these findings with its visitors. White Sands offers a wide variety of interpretive programs, from sunset strolls to full moon hikes and bike rides. The full moon nights summer series of concerts and special presentations attract up to 800 visitors per program. In addition to a robust interpretive program, park staff seek to expand the education program including more outreach to local schools.

The person in this position will manage and lead the expansion of the education outreach program. Monument staff are developing a five-year comprehensive interpretive plan; many interpretive and education programs, interpretive media, and community outreach /special events are planned for the next five years. There are many opportunities for professional development for the right candidate.  Work will include walking up to five miles over rolling dunes in all types of weather, and standing for long periods of time. The person selected will also be required to operate a government vehicle.

Located in the Tularosa Basin, White Sands is about 15 miles west of Alamogordo, New Mexico, which lies at the foot of the Sacramento Mountains.  Summer temperatures regularly exceed 100 degrees, while winter months tend to be mild with nighttime temperatures frequently dipping below freezing.  Precipitation averages 8 inches per year.  Alamogordo (population 35,000), 15 miles from the Lincoln National Forest, is about 90 miles north of the international border city of El Paso, Texas. West is the university city of Las Cruces, New Mexico, and north, the heart of the Land of Enchantment.  Local attractions range from recreational opportunities and cultural events to areas of historical significance and educational possibilities.  The area is host to museums, observatories, state and nationally managed parks and recreation sites, theaters for the performing arts, institutions of higher learning, and an abundance of year-round community events and activities.   The housing market is thriving in Alamogordo.  Most major amenities can be found in the tri-city area.

The selected person will be involved in the following areas.

Front-line interpretation and visitor center operations:               

  • manage the daily operations of the visitor center
  • research, develop, and present a variety of informal and formal interpretive programs
  • plan, organize, and support special events
  • provide on and off-site interpretive presentations to school and community groups
  • staff visitor center desk
  • develop the daily operation schedule
  • implement IDP program through coaching and mentoring lower-graded employees

Education program coordination:

  • manage education fee waivers        
  • schedule and coordinate on and off site education programs
  • develop lesson plans and other written educational materials
  • manage the TRT program
  • provide curriculum-based education programs on and off site including pre and post activities
  • support development of a distance education program

Supervision and coordination of non-NPS personnel:

  • supervise Teacher Ranger Teachers
  • prepare performance standards
  • recruit, hire, and train TRTs and interns, etc.

Community outreach:

  • support the chief of interpretation with the development of a community outreach program
  • collaborate with community partners to develop outreach programs, write grants, and present community programs

Interpretive planning and non-personal media:

  • write articles for the park newspaper, social media, and other outlets
  • participate in the development a variety of media projects including wayside exhibits, junior ranger book, and self-guided trails.
  • write and design teacher newsletters using Adobe Indesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator.

The park seeks an individual with experience in researching, developing and presenting a variety of informal and formal interpretive programs.

Applications will be accepted from current competitive service, career and career-conditional employees of the National Park Service.  Relocation expenses will be paid. Candidates must meet time and grade requirements, qualifications, currently be a GS-09 or have been (or successfully competed for) that grade or higher.  Government housing is not available.

Conditions of employment: 

  • Employee will be required to work nights, holidays, and weekends. 
  • Employee will be required to wear the NPS uniform. 
  • Occasional overnight travel is required. 

Interested individuals should submit the following:

  • Resume
  • Copy of your latest SF-50 (non-award) that indicates your current status, title, series, grade, and step
  • Copy of your latest performance appraisal
  • At least three professional references with phone numbers

Applications must be postmarked by July 14th. Interested applicants should send their application package to: Human Resources, White Sands National Monument, P.O. Box 1086, Holloman AFB, NM 88330, ATTN:  Jan Carpenter.  

For more information regarding this position, please contact Becky Wiles Burghart, chief of interpretation, at 575-479-6124 x230 or via email at rebecca_wiles@nps.gov.