Best of the Rest – Difficult Topics, KZOO, Mutual Aid To Detroit, Is EMS a Vital Service?, Know Yourself, and Much More!

The new site is off to a great start. I am still getting acquainted with all of the new features that make my job easier and others that will make your reading easier. As I continue to get back up to speed on the level of material I want to offer on the site, I am trying to get back to some of the previous columns I had. One of those is the “Best of the Rest”, where I feature articles that I enjoyed and I think you will too. They come from all across the wide array of fire service media. As always, if you have an article to share…just send it to me.

Check out the new TL-2 Miller 1884 from Phenix Fire Helmets. I have ordered a new shield from Box Alarm Leather.

Check out the new TL-2 Miller 1884 from Phenix Fire Helmets. I have ordered a new shield from Box Alarm Leather.

Be sure to follow along on Facebook (93k+ fans) or the all new Google+ page (43 fans…hey I said it was NEW). You can also find me on Twitter (@FireCritic) and Instagram (FireCritic).

If you are in the Kalamazoo, Michigan area, Captain Wines and I will be there on the 25th to give our talk on Motivating Firefighters, Improving Morale, Utilizing Social Media, and most importantly Professional Wellness. More information here

Were Coming For You – By Warren Cersley on Fire Engineering Community

We’re coming for you.

“The Mayday – Firefighter Down training for tomorrow is cancelled by the Captain, no reason given.”

Such was the similar message of April 14, 1912 when Captain Edward Smith of RMS Titanic cancelled the life boat drill. At 1140 PM that same day, Titanic struck an iceberg in the North Atlantic and 2 ½ hours later the unsinkable Titanic sank. Some life boats were found floating empty, one had a capacity of 65 and carried only 24 survivors, another with a capacity of 40 carried 12. Hind sight is 20/20 and so is realistic training. (This is a must read article…read the rest here) – 2013.. Facing Suicide head on without committing it.

It’s New Year’s Eve 2013 and I’ve never looked more forward to putting a year behind me than I am right now. Those of you who have followed this site know the struggles I’ve faced since December 30, 2012. It hasn’t been easy! – Captain Wines and The Fire Critic hit the road (and skies) to kick off 2014

For me, it couldn’t have hit at a worse time. It’s time for me and Rhett to hit the road and kick off 2014! It’s going to be an exciting but very busy year for The Fire Critic and and we can’t wait!

We’re starting off with a couple solo trips. I hit the road this weekend and will head South into North Carolina once again.

Backstep Firefighter – The Discussion Every Shift Must Have

A fire department and its members will never be able to successfully deal with the suicide of one of their own if they don’t first talk candidly about suicide. – Mutual Aid Response to the Motor City

My fellow bloggers, Rhett Fleitz (The Fire Critic) and Captain Wines (Wooden Ladders and Iron Firemen) will also be on location to assist in delivering the equipment. They are going to be nearby for a speaking engagement for the Kalamazoo FOOL’s, and will be driving straight to Detroit afterward. Their dedication and passion for the fire service is very apparent, and this is an event that they have been very supportive of as well. However, these aren’t the only familiar faces that will be on hand.

The Model City Firefighter Blog has a new look as well! Andrew has been busy with many new articles on the fire service…including several fires from his area. Check it out here

Rural Responders – Is EMS a vital service? A local look at EMS:

A recent post on Rural Responders has the local news covering the article and questioning some of the authors accusations.

At the risk of being too long winded, we’ll have more on the budget matter in later posts. You’re still wondering where that question comes from aren’t you? Well, to make this long story short, in a recent conversation discussing the importance of emergency medical services and protecting the lives of the citizens and visitors of the community, a senior staff member from Wythe County’s administration said that “EMS should not be confused for a vital service” because “unlike police and fire it’s not mandated by the state.” So, that’s the simple answer? If it’s not mandatory at the state level it’s not important? When reminded about the nature of EMS and that it provides life saving services to the community, the staff member restated his position with “people die every day, that’s the way it’s been since the beginning of time.” We all have our opinions, and he’s certainly entitled to his, I for one want my loved ones taken care of if they have an emergency. 

“I think the thought that EMS is not a vital service is crazy,” JD Hancock, Wythe County Executive Director says.

We sat down with the Wythe County Public Information Officer Jeremy Farley to get some answers.

He says as a whole, Wythe County leaders don’t agree with the alleged comment, but are open to addressing feedback on the blog.

Pheonix Society – Getting Through the Fire: One Couple’s Guidebook for “Surviving Survival”:

Feb. 4, 2007, is the day that changed the lives of Lionel and Joanna Crowther forever. A firefighter with the Winnipeg, Manitoba, Fire Department, Lionel was off duty that night when he got called in for an overtime shift to fight a house fire.

What was reported to be a routine attached-garage fire, proved to be anything but. Within minutes after responding to the call, a flashover occurred. Flames engulfed the entire house, trapping several firefighters on the second floor. Somehow Lionel managed to escape by jumping out of a second-story window.

Firefighter Nation – USFA: New Jersey On-Duty Death:

The U.S. Fire Administration has announced the official on-duty death of Firefighter Cosmo Paris, 59, of the Cliffside Park Fire Department on January 8, 2014.

Firefighter Paris responded to an activated alarm which created a hazard in the building necessitating fire officials to order a stand-by at the location for a fire watch. The fire watch duty extended 16 hours in sub-freezing temperatures. A short time after the fire watch concluded, Paris suffered a heart attack while operating a motor vehicle. Firefighter Paris was discovered by police then treated and transported to the hospital where he succumbed to his injury. – The combat ready driver:

First and foremost the driver needs to know the apparatus like the back of their hand. This means knowing where every piece equipment is, how every component and resource on the apparatus works, and how to troubleshoot issues. The driver needs to ensure that everything is where it’s supposed to be, and that all of the equipment is serviced and ready for use. Not to say that the driver can’t ask for help with this process, but the responsibility is on the drivers’ shoulders. – Know Yourself:

If you’re wearin’ a bugle, do you remember your first night as the CO?  I remember my first night on duty as a company officer.  I had pulled plenty of shifts bumpin’ up, but this was my first night as the assigned company officer.  I can still remember it crystal clear.. Nothing happened that night.  Except if you had lingered near my bunkroom, you probably could’ve felt my pulse through the wall.  It was pounding that hard until I fell asleep from mental exhaustion.  I don’t know why the thoughts didn’t hit me earlier, it wasn’t until I lay down in the firehouse that night, my first night as an officer.   Part of it is my conditioning. – For second time shots fired at Cleveland, OH firehouse. One bullet goes in front window & out rear window .

For the second time in 10 days shots have been fired at Cleveland, Ohio’s Fire Station No. 20, 3765 Pearl Road, near the Brooklyn Centre Historic District. No firefighters were struck.

In Washington, DC when you have a crime problem, they send a fire truck and firefighters to sit in the area to prevent such activity.


Tabernacle Fire Fighters involved in accident on while responding to a call

Tabernacle–Black ice kept first responders jumping on the morning of Friday, Jan. 10. While responding to a call on Route 206, fire fighters from Medford Farms Volunteer Fire Company were involved in an accident which ejected the driver of Fire Engine 4311 sending him to Cooper Medical Center with serious injuries. The truck spun out of control due to the ice hitting four vehicles.

Fire engine 4311 is the back up engine which was scheduled to be moved to the Emergency Services building on New Road once key fobs could be obtained for the fire fighters. It is unlikely that this unit will now be moved given the damage and the age of the equipment. – T-Shirt Campaign To Send FF To Heavy Rescue School

This t-shirt campaign just came to me the other day and hopefully will be a successful way to get someone a week of training.  It’s premise is to send at least one firefighter to the BGSU State Fire School Heavy Rescue class May 12-15, 2014 in Bowling Green, OH.  If the campaign reaches its goal; registration, travel (continental U.S.), and lodging will be covered.

FDT shirt