North Salt Lake recently hired Ryan Frandsen, a firefighter with the South Davis Metro Fire Agency, to serve as the city's emergency preparedness coordinator. North Salt Lake is among the first Davis cities to make the position an official part of city staff.
"(South Davis Metro Fire Agency Chief) Jim Rampton is very excited about this," said North Salt Lake Mayor Shanna Schaefermeyer.
"Every city in Davis County has been trying to figure out how to coordinate their emergency needs."
The position is part-time, with Frandsen continuing his duties with the fire agency. He is currently based in the station adjoining the North Salt Lake City Hall.
Frandsen will be responsible for preparing the city for a large-scale natural disaster. The city council has written up a list prioritizing the steps necessary to make that happen, including creating an emergency plan for the city, coordinating efforts between the city, the community group Uniting Neighbors, local large industrial businesses, and the state.
He also intends to offer CERT classes as well as other training to increase the preparedness of individual residents.
"We've been looking for someone to help both Uniting Neighbors and Chief Rampton, because the job required more than both of them could give part time," said North Salt Lake City Recorder LaRae Dillingham. "We've been working on this for several months."
For their part, Uniting Neighbors is thrilled with the addition to the city, and has their own list of projects they hope to work on with Frandsen.
"This is absolutely fabulous. His presence is just going to be such a plus for the community," said Chris Kirkham, a Uniting Neighbors organizer. "Hopefully, Uniting Neighbors can be an asset to him."