About Red Wing CAER

What is CAER

The vision of the Red Wing Community Awareness and Emergency Response (CAER) Organization is to provide and support preparedness for public safety and environmental quality.

The organization facilitates mutual aid assistance between members during response to oil spills on the Mississippi River, it’s backwaters and Lake Pepin. We are working at positioning equipment caches down to Dubuque Iowa.

Pooling resources makes response to spilled oil quicker and more effective than otherwise possible. According to Steve Lee, past Supervisor of Emergency Response at Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, "Companies have talked for years about the almost impossible challenge of maintaining preparedness for major oil spills. An obvious, though very difficult, solution is working together and sharing equipment, staff, and training."

Who We are
Red Wing CAER membership is made up of private business, emergency response organizations and city and county government. All members realize the importance of a “Community Awareness Emergency Response” (CAER) organization in our immediate area.

What We Do
We hold regular meetings to help prepare and train ourselves in responding to an emergency release in the area. Classroom training sessions, scenarios, speakers and table top exercises are held with the goal of being prepared to help mitigate and reduce the risk to people, business and the environment. One of our goals is to help protect the Mississippi River system by encouraging the formation of other CAER groups

Training, Exercise, and Response Planning Committee:

  1. To provide for maintenance, development, and growth of cooperative response efforts among member organizations through response planning and exercises.
  2. To provide training in the use of specialty spill response equipment.
  3. To provide analysis and critique of emergency exercises/drills done by companies and organizations in our area as needed.

Community Awareness and Communication Committee:

  • To develop community awareness and response programs for hazardous materials and natural disasters.
  • To serve as a clearinghouse for ideas, efforts, suggestions, or programs that mutually benefit those responsible in emergency response and the community.
  • To establish relationships with community organizations to communicate information about dealing with hazards.
  • To provide public relations support for the organization, which includes communicating with prospective new members.

Equipment Caches

Members have access to six (6) equipment caches that contain thousands of feet of oil spill containment boom. Red Wing CAER members can use the equipment for actual response and for training. These jointly owned caches of equipment are unique in Minnesota.

Four of the equipment caches are strategically located along the Mississippi River between Red Wing and Dubuque Iowa, Cache Map. Another cache is located at the Red Wing Airport, between the Mississippi River and the BNSF Railroad.

Requesting Mutual Aid

Participating organizations can request mutual aid assistance from other participating organizations by contacting the State Duty Officer (SDO). The SDO will notify the appropriate organizations with information about the release. Partner organizations in the CAER group have agreed to assist to the extent that they are able.

The requesting organization must provide the SDO with the following information:

  • Location and contact information for the person and/or company responsible for the release.
  • A contact name and phone number for the requesting organization.
  • The nature of the incident, material released, volume, etc., for which they are requesting assistance.
  • The location of the release and probable location(s) where resources are needed.
  • The resources that are being requested.

MN State Duty Officer actions:

  • Inform the requesting organization about the notifications the SDO is reuired to make.
  • Notify the MPCA, other state and federal agencies as required.
  • Link the requesting organization with the MPCA On-Call staff.
  • Provide the MPCA On-Call staff with the contact information for the Red Wing CAER participating organizations below as requested.

Red Wing CAER Participating Organizations

  • Archer Daniels Midland
  • Xcel Energy
  • Wilson Oil
  • CP Railroad
  • BNSF Railroad
  • Pierce County Emergency Management
  • Pierce County Sheriff’s Department
  • Ellsworth Fire Department
  • Lake City Fire Department
  • Wabasha County Emergency Management
  • Ole Miss Marina
  • Bay West
  • ARTCO barge lines(American River Transportation Company)
  • Goodhue County Emergency Management
  • Goodhue County Fire Department
  • City of Red Wing, Public works
  • Lake City Marina
  • Clean Harbors
  • Pinnacle Engineering
  • Goodhue County Sheriff’s Department
  • S.T.A.R.S.(Safety Training Response Strategies)
  • Winona Emergency Management

Financial Responsibility
Any expenses accrued for the response to an incident are the responsibility of the requesting organization. This includes: transporting an equipment cache, cleaning and/or replacing equipment, and/or other costs associated with any assistance provided.