Remembering The Coatesville 7 (Almost)… Article on Near Miss Report

A report is about to be published on a three alarm apartment fire that injured 7 firefighters in Coatesville, PA.

We almost lost 7 firefighters that day. Luckily, they escaped with injuries only and no one died. This could have been a bigger tragedy than it was.

An article on the fire and upcoming report is blaming Incident Command, lack of communication, lack of doing a 360, and freelancing among other things that culminated with 7 firefighters injured. Some of those firefighters jumped from the second or third floor balconies.

In addition, firefighters had to go back in to search for a missing firefighter. That firefighter was later found safe at home after he simply left the scene. What the hell is up with that?

Dave Statter reported on the fire when it occured here.

There is video below.

The article by can be found here

Investigators found that Coatesville Fire Bureau Chief Kevin Johnson and other leaders failed their duties during the Sept. 10, 2010, fire at Millview in the 1800 block of Saginaw Drive. More than 100 firefighters responded to the blaze that caused roughly $1.5 million in damage to the 28-unit apartment building. Read the entire article here

The article later states:

“The false assumption of the exact location of the fire being the third floor caused others on the interior to also bypass the uncontrolled fire burning in the second-floor apartment,” the report states. “Responders’ reports and interviews indicated that everyone in the fire building was working for themselves.  Read the entire article here

As I mentioned in the title, this could have very easily been a dark day for the fire service. We almost lost 7 firefighters that day and potentially more. Luckily, all lives were spared. However, some of the injured are still recovering.

One of the firefighters, Deputy Chief Pacana is also a firefighter in DC. He has been unable to return to work due to a hurt leg.

Lentz, the local union president for the city’s paid firefighters — the International Association of Fire Fighters — said in a prepared statement Monday that the Coatesville Fire Department has been working with administrators to update the department’s manual of Standard Operating Guidelines and an updated manual was finished April 4.  Read the entire article here