Emergency officials plan months in advance for fireworks show

Each year, emergency officials are planning for months to make sure safety is top priority for the hundreds of thousands of people coming to P&G Riverfest and the Cincinnati Bell/WEBN Fireworks.

"What we're doing is, we're preparing for that situation that we don't want to happen," said Anson Turley, Cincinnati Fire Department District Chief.

Each year, you'll see hundreds of police and emergency workers on the ground at an event this size.

That's why the Regional Operations Center in Hamilton County was a little busier than usual on Sunday.

Anything that allows us to deal with a disaster or the emergency more quickly, more efficiently, is going to keep the public safer," said Asst. Chief Ed Dadosky of the Cincinnati Fire Department.

What goes on there behind the scenes plays a big role in keeping the large crowds safe.

There are agencies from Kentucky and Ohio working together alongside the Coast Guard, all looking at maps, and carefully watching around two dozen cameras at key points around Riverfest.

They're helping to provide support to all emergency workers in the river, and along its banks.

"If anything were to happen, anything out of the ordinary, we would provide the support.  We would get the necessary resources, and we'd coordinate with them on a response.  Basically, we're here as a backup, added Turley.

Just a few miles away on the riverfront is where some emergency agencies on-site have set up shop.  They coordinate on-site responses from mobile command units.

"We do have communications with Kentucky.  We can talk to Newport's command.  We can talk to Covington's command.  We're talking back and forth with all the different vessels on the water, as well," said Tom Lakamp, District Chief of Special Operations for the Cincinnati Fire Department.

Though it's obviously tough to tell how many responses crews will have to make, they're prepared for anything when it comes to crowd safety.

"We usually prepare for the worst, and then respond.  Depending on the year and the weather, depends on how many responses we have.  Usually as soon as the fireworks start, we start getting busy.  It just happens every year," Lakamp told FOX19.

Folks at the Regional Operations Center told FOX19 shortly after the fireworks ended that there were no major incidents this year.

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