Best of the Rest: Backdraft II, Once in a Lifetime Rescue, and New Helmets for Chicago and Houston

I am heading to South Dakota to teach social media with Captain Wines later this week and then we are gearing up for FDIC. More on that in the near future. For now, enjoy these headlines from the past couple of days.

Rhett Fleitz – The Fire Critic

Chicago and Houston FD’s Purchase European style helmets

magmaI did not see this one coming…Both the Chicago FD and Houston FD have made big purchases with Bullard this week. The departments have prohibited the use of traditional style helmets and are reissuing brand new helmets. Here is the thing, the new helmets will be Bullard Magna’s. The Magna is a European style helmet which are virtually unheard of in the U.S. The new helmets will be quite a bit different than what Chicago and Houston are used to. Rumors are starting to surface of FDNY following along…and that departments in Sweden are currently bidding on ebay for the retired Chicago and Houston helmets.

Rescue caught on helmet camera by firefighter AND GoPro by victim

I always imagined this might happen. In a rare once in a lifetime occurrence, a rescue at a house fire in Lower Dumpwater, MS was caught on video from the rescuer and the victim simultaneously. Firefighter Jimmy Goodbody had only been wearing his helmet camera from Fire Cam for a couple of days when he got his opportunity to use it. The call came in after dinner at a home on Sweetwater lane. The victim, Steve Johnson got caught in his house after a fire started in his basement. Both Jimmy and Steve caught the rescue on camera from opposing viewpoints. Luckily, the space-time continuum was unaffected by the video. The videos have been edited together and can be seen here

Dave Statter has been hired as character consultant to DC Fire Chief Ellerbe

In what most would consider “shocking news”, Dave Statter (formerly of WUSA9) has been hired on as a character consultant for DC Fire Chief Kenneth Ellerbe at the request of DC Mayor Vincent Gray. Chief Ellerbe was not available for comment, but Gray’s publicist says this as the best thing that has ever happened to Ellerbe. Dave Statter’s only contract negotiation was that he WOULD be considered a sworn member of the fire department and not a civilian position. I guess Statter will be able to call himself a firefighter after all.

399ec658a4884bc6ed85e5b17a87a06b.535x728x1Backdraft II Set to Release in 2015

The sequel to 1991’s “Backdraft” is currently in production. The film is set again in Chicago. Producer Ron Howard has looked forward to the sequel ever since the first one almost 25 years ago. The film is based on an all female firefighting crew. The cast is said to headline with Jessica Biel, Jessica Alba, Sofia Vergara, and Melissa McCarthy. There will be cameos by much of the original cast. Filming is going on now and the film will be released in Summer 2015.

Captain Willie Wines Jr. Hints at Retirement

Captain Wines has hinted at retirement. Well, not actually hinted…he came out and said he is retiring. He just didn’t say when. Read more about it here gains National recognition and new ranking

Public Safety news site has once again made headlines as being re-ranked by the National Association of Public Safety News Syndicates. The fairly new site has jumped from the 27th most trusted source for public safety news to a staggering 26th position. When reached for comment, the sites owner RJ Beam simply said “Great, now I have to pay 11 year old son another $67 for a new web banner to show the new ranking.” to change name

The popular vehicle construction and extrication site for the fire service, is contemplating a new name. The issue stems from the high education level of the firefighter/automobile industry expert Michael Smith (author of and the low education level of the commentors on the site. The new site name will be When reached for comment, Smith simply stated “I wish Dave Statter would quit linking to his site. The keyboard incident commanders who fill up with junk comments have infiltrated and turned it into kindergarten for vehicle extrication.