Video below of FDNY firefighters battling a high-rise fire in lower Manhattan. The videos offer two angles of the fire which started on the 16th floor and extended to the 18th. According to reports, it is a 21 story building. Firefighter Nation beat me to this story…they have a little more on it here. The fire occurred at 69 Columbia Street yesterday, March 28th around 11:18am.
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I am gearing up for FDIC as many of my friends are as well. This year, Willie and I will be traveling with Mike Elston (Salem FD), and Andrew Catron (Kingsport FD). We look forward to many of the events. I will be posting our itinerary soon to let you all know where we will be.
My wife and I are planning on doing the Hero Rush in Maryland on April 28th. We just need to solidify someone to watch our children. We have a wedding to attend that evening in Norther Virginia as well.
Hopefully, Willie and I will have the patches and challenge coins by FDIC. The patches should be here later this week. We will let you know how to get yours soon! The patches were made by NM Coin LLC.
The pic on the right is our new patch!
This weeks “Best of the Rest” is a little short. Today, I decided to ride my bike (as in bicycle) to the gym and back. Did I mention it was “leg” day at the gym which is about an 8 mile ride one way. It was fun though!
Shoutout: Hero Rush
Web site: Hero Rush
An obstacle race & experience created by firefighters.
You can view all of the weekly drills by FirefighterCloseCalls.com here. Try these two at the firehouse this week:
Random Tweet of the Week
News and Opinion
VAFireNews.com: Help VAFireNews.com spread the word about the Gore VFD needing a tanker. They are in desperate need of a donated tanker after they lost theirs in a wreck that claimed the life of one of their firefighters. Read more here and help by sharing on Facebook!
FireGeezer.com celebrates 5 years as a blog. He also has some stats, like over 12,000 posts! That is an achievement! Read more here
Fire Critic Chicken Salad: You guys asked for it…Here is the recipe that my guys love at the firehouse. Ok, maybe they like more, but this is one of them. Check out the recipe here.
FireLawBlog.com has the update on a local story for The Fire Critic. A lawsuit was dismissed by the judge in the case of a firefighter supposedly having sex in a station. The latest lawsuit alleged sex discrimination against Dennis Croft. Read more here
Boron Extrication continues to teach us about vehicles…and what we need to know to keep us safe!
Backstep Firefighter offers some insight and a few links on Transitional Attack. Read more here
STATter911.com originally shared this bit below of two firefighters trying to occupy the same space while heading to an alarm.
The Gore VFD needs help. They need a tanker. You can help by sharing on Facebook and Twitter. Either share this post, or share the original post on VAFireNews.com that already has 226+ “likes” on Facebook! Bloggers can help by posting this on their blogs too!
On February 13th of this year, the Gore Volunteer Fire Department suffered a tragic loss. Firefighter Zachary Whitacre was killed, In the Line of Duty, during a single vehicle wreck. The Gore VFD is rebuilding. Not only did they lose a bright young firefighter, they also lost their tanker. A tanker they rely on for water supply in their area.
They are looking for help. They are seeking a tanker to be donated to their fire department. There have been many offers of used tankers for sale, but they simply do not have the funds to purchase. Not even a used tanker.
If you know of any department willing to donate a tanker, or someone willing to fund the purchase of a tanker please contact them.
Gore VFD is in desperate need of a Tanker…help them out by sharing this with anyone and everyone!
The Gore Volunteer Fire Department of Frederick County, Virginia suffered a tragic loss back in February when Station 14 member Zachary Taylor “Zach” Whitacre passed away in a line of duty death as a result of an accident. The department wishes to express its thanks and gratitude to all departments for the support they have received since Zach passed away.
As a result of this accident, the department’s “Tanker 14”, a 1,500 gallon tanker, was totaled and the Gore members are utilizing their current 1994 Pierce with a 1,000 gallon water tank as their primary suppression unit. The Gore Volunteer Fire Department is in desperate need of a used tanker.
Based on their first due response area, a tanker truck carrying 1,500 – 1,800 gallons of water is needed. Since the department would have to utilize the tanker as a backup to their engine, a 1,000 gallon per minute pump (or 750 gallon per minute) is also preferred.
If your department is selling or willing to donate your tanker truck to the Gore community, please contact Assistant Chief Kevin Yost at Fire Station 14. The phone number to contact is (540) 858-2811. If you prefer email, contact the editor of VAFireNews.com at email@example.com and I will forward the message.
I had seen these a while back. I posted one a while back. We watched them again when the guys brought them up at the firehouse. We laughed like hell.
I knew right then that I couldn’t go on through the day without making sure everyone saw them.
Even though there might be a little terminology that is different area to area, the sentiment hits home…we have all had these kind of days. We have all taken part or listened to these types of bitch sessions…
Go ahead and laugh… WARNING: Language
Here is a bonus video. This one starts out kinda slow but gets pretty good!
Congratulations to the following blogs for being named the 2012 Blogs of the Year!
Reader’s Choice Fire Blog of the Year: STATter 911
Judge’s Choice Fire Blog of the Year: Backstep Firefighter
Reader’s Choice EMS Blog of the Year: Insomniac Medic
Judge’s Choice EMS Blog of the Year: EMS 12 lead
After weeks of nominations, voting, and judging…the blogs above beat out all the rest!
Below you will find all of the nominated blogs…The ones in bold were the ten finalists for voting. The ones bold and italic were finalists for the judges. The remaining nominated blogs are below that in no particular order.
You should definitly check through the list to see the blogs. You might find one you had never read.
Fire Blogs Shortlist for Voting and Judges
- Working the job
- CT Fire EMS
- Statter 911
- First In
- Backstep Firefighter
- Average Jake FF
- I never wanted to be a firefighter
- Firehouse Zen
- Fire Law Blog
- An Ordinary Fireman
- Insomniac Medic
- Diagnosis: LOB
- Mobile Intensive Prayer Unit
- EMS Office Hours
- Trauma Queen
- Siren Voices
- Rogue Medic
- Paramedic Pulp Fiction
- EMS 12 lead
- EMT Spot
- Happy Medic
- Manchester egg 2010
- Rescuing Providence
- Firefighter/Paramedic Stories
The Rest of the Nominated Blogs:
- Target Solutions Fire Blog
- Firefighter Close Calls
- The Fire Critic
- Belton Fire Department
- Chicago Area Fire
- Philly Fire News
- Rescue Humor
- Rescuing Myself
- Ambulance Stories in Mexico
- The Social Medic
- Not On My Shift
- Mitigation Journal
- Diary of a Benefit Scrounger
- Penn Care Blog
- Probie to Practitioner
- Hitting the Hot Spot
- CAL FIRE Inyo-Mono-San Bernardino Unit
- Firefighter/Medic San Diego County
- FlashPoint Fundraising
- The Working Class Conservative
- Hauling Humans / A Paramedic’s Perspective in a Fire Based EMS System
- The Code Coach
- Medic Madness
- California Fire News
- PGFD PIO Blog
- A Day In The Life Of An Ambulance Driver
- Sticky Side Down EMS Blog
- Life Under the Lights
- The Most Interesting Ambulance Crew in the World (Facebook Page)
- Coalition for Tactical Medicine
- Command Safety
- Westfield Fire Department
- Everyday EMS Tips
- Rescue Digest
- Paramedic Blog
- CFA Connect’s Blog
- Parapup Blog
- Life On Fire Report
- Brady Books Blog
- EMS Patient Perspective
- Situational Awareness Matters
- ASM-AETNA Blog
- The Howling Wolf
- Genola VFD
- Dan White on EMS1.com
- Pompierii Timișoara
- Montgomery County, MD Fire & Rescue News
- Street Watch: Notes of a Paramedic
- ER24 Blog
- Backwards and Stupid
- Fire Rescue France
You guys have asked for it. I think I have dangled it in front of your faces long enough. It is time that I set you out on your journey to see if you can make the Fire Critic Gourmet Chicken Salad (Willie, the T is silent in Gourmet). Feel free to offer your ideas to make it better.
Here is how it goes…One day at the firehouse, the guys said they wanted chicken salad. I knew how to make chicken salad, but it wasn’t great. I didn’t want to make it. I don’t like it when cooking is a chore and not fun. One of the guys said that I could come up with a gourmet style chicken salad.
I found a half dozen recipes on gourmet chicken salad. I looked them over and walked away. I can cook from a recipe, but it was not necessary. Therefore, the inspiration for this recipe was taken from several recipes. I knew I did not want to use mayo or that slaw dressing. I wanted something lighter and maybe healthier.
I can also tell you that while I can give you the ingredients, you will have to figure out how much of each you will need. I simply cook by sight.
- Oven Roasted chicken (broiled/grilled will work as well)
- Walnuts (chopped)
- Almonds (sliced)
- Celery chopped small
- Onion chopped small (do not use a lot of onion)
- Grapes cut in half (black or red seedless work the best)
- Dried Cranberries
- Mandarin Oranges
- Creamy Cucumber salad dressing (Kroger brand offers one)
- black pepper
One way of making this meal cheaper is to cook extra chicken the shift before and have it cold in the fridge for the day you want to use it. Another way to make it cheaper is to buy walnuts, cranberries, and almonds in bulk and have it on hand for the next time you make this dish.
I typically season the chicken somehow before cooking. You could try lemon pepper seasoning or oven roasted with Italian seasoning. Pull the chicken from the bone or pull apart the meat on boneless chicken breasts. Save money cooking whole chickens and picking both white meat and dark meat to use. Make it healthier by using only chicken breasts.
In a large bowl, add the chicken, walnuts, almonds, celery, onion, grapes, cranberries, and some black pepper. Mix it up and then add the salad dressing. Mix thoroughly. Finally, add the mandarin oranges and mix up a little bit more. Put the chicken salad in the fridge to chill and serve cold. This stuff is great the next day too!
The photos used in this post were from today. I made a large batch of chicken salad for dinner tonight and lunch on Friday.
The amount of ingredients I used today were approximately:
- 4 lbs of chicken breasts and 3 whole chickens all oven roasted and seasoned with garlic and lemon pepper seasoning.
- 12 oz. of walnuts
- 8 oz. of almonds
- 1 stalk of celery
- 1 medium onion
- 1 lb. of grapes
- 1 tablespoon of black pepper
- 2 bottles of creamy cucumber salad dressing
- 4 cans of mandarin oranges
Optional: You can add apples to the recipe too. I add them occasionally.
The guys love this stuff. It is a meal and dessert in one!
Best of the Rest – Blog of the Year Voting, Firefighter Nation, Mahlon Mitchell, LODD, SAFER, and More!No comments
Voting ends tomorrow for the 2012 Blog of the Year contest. Hosted by EMS1, FireRescue1 and FireCritic.com, and sponsored by the American Military University. There are some great blogs on the ballot in both Fire and EMS categories! There were almost 400 nominations for 55 blogs.
I have to admit something readers…I have been wrong. All this time I have stuck with my story that Dave Statter was NEVER a firefighter. Part of the reason for my inability to think that he could ever have been one of us is because I couldn’t find a department who would claim him. Until this week. The funny thing is that Dave was the first to break the story. Any department who fights fire in drag would have allowed Dave to join their ranks. Here’s to you Sedan Fire Department in Minnesota! Read more here
St. Patrick’s Day 2012 is behind us. I had fun hanging out with the family. We made it to downtown Roanoke after the parade was over because my son had two lacrosse games to play in. It was the first parade I have missed in several years. According to facebook updates, everyone seemed to have a lot of fun at their respective events!
Shoutout: Firefighter Nation
Web site: Firefighter Nation
Think of it as Facebook for Firefighters. The site is a social networking site that allows members to join and share videos, photos, thoughts, ideas, blogs, recipes, etc….etc. Get in on the fun now!
You can view all of the weekly drills by FirefighterCloseCalls.com here. Try these two at the firehouse this week:
- RIT Vol 19-226 RIT Scenario 6: FF Through the Roof
- RIT Vol 19-227 RIT Scenario 7: FF Trapped Under Collapse
Random Tweet of the Week
News and Opinion
Mahlon Mitchell is running for Lieutenant Governor in Wisconsin in a run-off election. He is a firefighter and fed up with the way they have been treated. He is trying to make a difference. http://mahlonmitchell.com/
Mahlon Mitchell was born in Milwaukee and grew up in Delavan, Wisconsin. He now lives with his wife, April and two children, Sie’anna and Karson, in Fitchburg.
Mahlon followed in his older brother’s footsteps when he became a fire fighter in Madison fifteen years ago. His two brothers are fire fighters in Atlanta and St. Paul. These careers came out of a family that instilled values of service and working for others.
FireGeezer.com – Mike “FossilMedic” Ward is seeking to get a road named after FireGeezer.com. Apparently everything is for sale in Virginia! Read more here
Officer.com – In Arkansas, a firefighter is killed and a police officer and firefighter in critical condition after a motorist hit them at an accident scene. Read more
FirefighterNation.com – Be on the lookout for this trailer which was stolen from Lexington (KY?). See the information here
Also on FFN is IAFF: Romney Opposes SAFER and FIRE Act Grant Programs. Most of my friends are republicans….they don’t care about stuff like this
Cincinnati.com – Speaking about SAFER…Cincinnati wants $6 million to hire firefighters. City Wants $6m To Hire 40 Firefighters; Staffing Down To 770
VAFireNews.com has the story on a 54 y.o. Norfolk Firefighter who died at the firehouse. Read more here
Firehouse.com – An off-duty Massachusetts firefighter is being hailed as a hero after saving a family from a fire. Read more here
Video below shows how two firefighters are lucky to be alive after their tanker rolled over. This happened in Madison County, MS. WATCH THE VIDEO to see the destruction the firefighters lived through!
What do you think? Would you have gone interior? Would you have stayed in the yard?
Obviously we don’t have all the facts on this fire. We don’t know how long it was burning or if there were people inside.
These firefighters make the second floor with an 1 3/4″ line. There might have been a backup line towards the end of the video.
What would you have done?
Firefighters need to be healthy. I am no health nut, nor will you be seeing me in a firefighter calendar anytime soon.
However, I have been trying to be a healthier firefighter. I am not talking about wearing SCBA…I have always done that. I am talking about strength training, eating healthy, and being fit.
I am talking about being fit and eating healthy. As I type this, my whole body is sore from a chest workout on Monday alone at the firehouse, a tremendous leg workout on Tuesday with my wife, and some vigorous training this morning in Troutville on Rapid Intervention Teams…needless to say, I took the day off from working out.
Please do not take this post as being a “lecture” about what you should be doing. I just want to share some of my inspiration for finally making a difference for myself. I am not a nutritionist, nor am I a personal trainer. In all, I have lost 15 lbs. in the past 6 months. That may not sound like much, but I only weight 155 lbs. now. I am not a big guy. I did have some excess weight and still have some “baby fat” to loose!
13 years in my department. I was 155 lbs. when I got hired. The only difference between then and now is that I had well defined abs then. Now, they are still covered by a layer (not a beer gut) of fat. I am working on that! 13 years of eating whatever the hell I wanted and I was blessed with only gaining 15 lbs. I can’t complain.
Feel free to let me know what works for you.
This is where I draw some of my inspiration:
My Wife Becky
My wife is an amazing woman. Over a year ago, she decided she was going to begin working out. She got a personal trainer and started a regimen of working out twice a week with a personal trainer. Soon after, she realized that her goal would be to compete in a local figure competition. This summer she will achieve that goal. After a year and a half of training, strict dieting, and pushing her body to the limits, she will compete. I am so proud and excited for her. I began working out with her and her trainer several months ago. Two days a week, I wear myself out in the gym right next to my wife. Above the fact that we are working out, we get to spend time together away from the children and get to have fun, cut up, and workout. It has been beneficial to us as a couple as well as individually for our bodies. My wife works out other days of the week on her own. I join here when I can.
Even after working out with her and the trainer, I still lacked motivation to work out at the station…until last week. I have finally turned the corner and seen some results of working out and want more. I don’t have any set goals for what I want to accomplish with working out, but putting on some muscle is good enough for me. Don’t worry…I am not splitting shirts yet!
Friends who run
For years, I have seen friends on facebook, twitter, and blogs who run. Greg Friese and Chris Hebert are two that come to mind immediately. They run. Greg probably runs more than I ever will. I still have not found that Runner’s high, and I don’t run regularly. What I have found that drives me is running 5k races. I have done several now and enjoy my time pushing myself each time. The messed up thing is that I don’t really train for the races. We will see where this goes. I will also note that my wife ran in the San Francisco Women’s Marathon a couple of years ago…another accomplishment of hers that she set her mind to. Unfortunately, she incurred and injury during the marathon and was only able to compete the 1/2 marathon.
I am the firehouse cook at my firehouse. I enjoy cooking and am able to control what is served at lunch and dinner. I might add that I am a pretty
decent cook, know how to do it on a budget and the guys seem to like my cooking. Over the years, I have worked in firehouses where I cook on a rotation or might not cook at all. I have learned all kinds of recipes. While I am not a health nut that researches healthy recipes…yet. I do follow some basic rules with firehouse cooking. They took a little while to catch on for some of the guys who REALLY enjoy “comfort” food, but I do what I can. The only thing I can’t control is portion size. While I may be cooking healthier food, these guys might get three plates of it. That might be a little counter-intuitive, but at least the piles of food they put in their mouth is better for them. They just quite follow the simple caloric input/output ideology.
Here are some of my cooking rules:
- No dinner rolls…except for Thanksgiving
- Wheat wraps when possible instead of breads
- Olive oil if I have to use it (hurts the budget)
- I rarely fry anything
- Fresh veggies…almost always
- Canned foods only when necessary
- Desserts are rare
- Spenda instead of sugars…this also helps with one of my guys who is diabetic
My wife is helping me with the dieting aspect of healthy eating…I am working on eating every 3 hours. Two protein shakes and snacks of fresh fruit accompany my three meals a day. My breakfast is typically 4 eggs (or egg whites when possible).
Again, I am still learning.
The Fire Service Warrior
If you pay attention to Chris Brennan and Brian Brush of The Fire Service Warrior, they talk a lot about fitness. Chris especially speaks of his crossfit workouts. Between the blog, Facebook, and Twitter @ChrisFSW (be sure to follow the hashtag #FSWTraining) Chris is always sharing about his burpee sessions and other CrossFit workouts. While I don’t participate in CrossFit, I have watched his videos and understood his ideology. He is inspirational simply the way he shares what he is doing. He doesn’t guilt you into doing anything, his efforts are more on creating a community at FSW that promotes working out.
After way to long, this is a part of what has inspired me to get me in the gym and continue on.
The Thinning of My Department
Just today I bumped into a firefighter who probably isn’t ashamed to say he had put on some excess weight. He has lost a bunch since the last time I saw him. It is amazing. He isn’t alone. Several guys, including Willie’s Battalion Chief has lost dozens of pounds. I am amazed when I see some of these guys. Our department of 240 firefighters has offered several over the years. You see them after not being around them for a while and they are thin and trim. I try to make it a point to give them props for looking great. I am certain they appreciate it.
I know how easy it is to eat whatever the hell you want and as much as you can stuff in your mouth as quick as you can. I am still learning to have constraint when eating. After all, every once in a while I cook something that I just don’t want to stop eating. You should try my chicken salad! AMAZING…not as healthy as I would like but it doesn’t have any mayo and is excellent.
We all have “those guys”. You know, the ones who are built like Mack trucks. Standing next to them makes you feel like such a pussy. We have several guys who have worked out for years. They are freakishly huge, but they are stout and muscular. These are the guys who pose in firefighter calendars. I have worked around these guys for years and never had the motivation to take the first step to build muscle like them. Given, it doesn’t happen overnight…but I am working towards broadening my shoulders a little bit so that I don’t look like a high school explorer next to them!
So there you have it…that is where I am at. What about you?
The quick links to vote are below:
Here are the blogs on the ballot(s) in no particular order…
EMS Blogs on the Ballot
- Insomniac Medic http://www.insomniacmedic.com/
- Diagnosis: LOB http://www.diagnosislob.com/
- Mobile Intensive Prayer Unit http://mobileintensiveprayerunit.blogspot.com/
- EMS Office Hours http://emsofficehours.com/
- Trauma Queen http://traumaqueen.net/
- Siren Voices http://www.sirenvoices.blogspot.com/
- Rogue Medic http://roguemedic.com/
- Paramedic Pulp Fiction http://paramedicpulpfiction.wordpress.com/
- EMS 12 lead http://ems12lead.com/
- The EMT Spot http://theemtspot.com/
Fire Blogs on the Ballot
- Fire Geezer http://firegeezer.com/
- Working the job http://workingthejob.blogspot.com/
- Fire Service Warrior http://www.fireservicewarrior.com/
- CT Fire-EMS http://www.ctfire-ems.com/
- STATter 911 http://statter911.com/
- Hydrant Girl http://hydrantgirl.blogspot.com/
- First In http://firstin.wordpress.com/
- Backstep Firefighter http://backstepfirefighter.com/
- Average Jake FF http://averagejakeff.wordpress.com/
- I never wanted to be a firefighter http://ineverwantedtobeafirefighter.blogspot.com/
New addition to “Best of the Rest” is the “Random Tweet of the Week”! Scroll down to see this one.
Willie and I are getting geared up for more traveling in 2012. We are looking forward to hanging out with the MN8 FoxFire team at FDIC. In September, Bob Gard is planning one helluva a good time in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. If you are anywhere in the vicinity you will want to be at this event. Willie and I will be speaking, and there will be plenty of other stuff going on as well! We will post more information soon.
In May, Dave Statter and I are presenting in Ohio at the Ohio Fire & Emergency Services Foundation’s 2012 Leadership Conference…Dave has been looking forward to this to some time. He gets to share the stage with his
hero err idol (ME). Join us in Newark, Ohio for May 23 & 24.Click here to sign up
If you want to have Willie and I, or Dave and I, or all three of us speak at an event near you just let us know! FireCritic@FireCritic.com
Voting for the 2012 Blog of the Year Contest, hosted by EMS1, FireRescue1 and FireCritic.com, and sponsored by the American Military University, will begin tomorrow (March 14th). There are some great blogs on the ballot in both Fire and EMS categories! There were almost 400 nominations for 55 blogs.
Shoutout – Alt.Kilt
Web Site: http://www.altkilt.com/
Facebook: Like them on Facebook: lt.Kilt
Our purpose is to provide functional, stylish and well-made kilts that are individually designed and handmade custom for each client.
Alt.Kilt is making Willie Wines Jr. and I custom kilts. Hopefully, we will be wearing them at FDIC!
You can view all of the weekly drills by FirefighterCloseCalls.com here. Try these two at the firehouse this week:
News and Opinion
Brotherhood Cuts – Willie Wines Jr. has an update from this past weekends inaugural “Brotherhood Cuts” fundraiser. The event raised around $2400 for local departments.
I visited the Shoals Volunteer Fire Department. I was there for the 1st ever Brotherhood Cuts Event.
“Brotherhood Cuts” is a fund raising event specifically designed for the fire service. It raises money through the National Firefighters Endowment who in turn, provides much needed funds and equipment to Departments in need all across the Country. Read more here
MN8 FoxFire is looking for your designs…and you could win!: MN8 Foxfire, you know…the photoilluminscent company, wants your help designing their new shirt! The new shirt will feature the MN8 FoxFire logo on the front and your design on the back. The winner will recieve a $100 MN8 FoxFire credit and a t-shirt. The winning design will be available at FDIC. Check out details of the contest.
There might be a FireCritic/IronFiremen/MN8FoxFire shirt in the near future!
Boston Fire Gear: I just got my St. Patrick’s Day long sleeve t-shirt today from Boston Fire Gear. I love Boston, St. Patrick’s day is one of my favorite
days to drink holidays, and as a good friend of mine told me yesterday…that is where Irish people are from! NICE! Get your Boston Fire Gear here
STATter911.com: Dave “The Investigator and UL Tester” Statter is at it again with the vinyl siding. This time, two houses go up in Loudoun County…in broad daylight. Check out the pre-arrival video and Dave’s investigative reporting here.
4Factor: Matthew Ritter, one half of the now known writers at ELAFFHQ.com, has branched out. Welcome 4Factor to the mix. Right now they are offering hand painted “Thin Red Line” door chocks. Check out the site here. Like them on Facebook here. I haven’t got my hands on one yet…but I will soon. They retail for $4….however read below.
**Current donations, for EACH wedge purchased , are going to Team ELAFFHQ.com bucket brigade for the National Firefighters Endowment! What this means to you is as follows: For EACH wedge you purchase, we make a donation to the bucket brigade in YOUR name. Each donation in YOUR name enters you into a DRAWING for a Phenix TL-2 Leather Fire Helmet! The more wedges you purchase, the better your odds in winning that helmet! Good luck Brother and Sister Firefighters!
FDNY Supports World Record Attempt: A SCARBOROUGH firefighter’s plans to enter the world record books are gathering pace as his fundraising challenge gets the green light in New York. Justin Rowe, who lives in Scarborough and is watch manager at Malton Fire Station, is planning to run to every ﬁre house in New York in seven days. He will be joined in the challenge by Ryedale station manager Andrew Blades, Whitby station manager Mark Naylor and York ﬁreﬁghter Terrence Gregg. Read more here
FireRescue1.com: Are cellphones that important? Worth your life? FireRescue1.com has the story of a woman rescued from a trash compactor after trying to retrieve here cellphone she accidentally threw away. Read about it here
Magnesium Fire in Bellevue, Ohio: FireGeezer.com has this story which hits close to home for The Fire Critic. My Mother’s side of the family lives in Bellevue including my Grandparents. I was just up there for a short visit not too long ago. Paul Hasenmeier shared this photo to the right from miles away.
A MAGNESIUM FIRE PRESENTED THE BELLEVUE, OHIO, firefighters with an unusual challenge Tuesday morning when they responded to the MagReTech factory across the road from the Bellevue Hospital. Read more here
Random Tweet of the Week
Follow @FireCritic on twitter for more news 24/7!
Let me begin…I am not a FOOL…yet. But I want to be!
I am referring to the Fraternal Order Of Leatherheads Society or F.O.O.L.S as they are referred to.
The area around me used to have the “Star City FOOLS”. Unfortunately, they didn’t stand the test of time.
Willie Wines Jr. and I have talked about getting another chapter going in our area. Not that we are looking for something else to do, but rather another decent group to be a part of. The FOOLS embody a lot of what Willie and I are about.
We are planning on a “meeting” at a local pub in Roanoke to invite/welcome all who are interested in getting a FOOLS chapter going.
Let me be clear though. Willie and I want to be a part of this chapter. We don’t want/need to be in charge of it. We are also looking for leaders who are interested in taking the reigns of the new chapter. I know of one brother in our department who might be a perfect fit for leading the FOOLS…but it will be up to the members!
Please let me know if you are interested. If you are in Western Virginia and not already in a FOOLS chapter, let me know. This would include from the Harrisonburg area south to NC and TN and all areas surrounding.
I will keep you posted on when the meeting will be. I want to collect names of individuals who are interested. So leave a comment, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or hit me up on facebook!
Until then, read up on what the FOOLS is all about!
I wrote about Brotherhood Cuts here about a month ago. The event is tomorrow!
This past month, we have raised about $1200 more dollars bringing the total to $1516 at the time of this writing. But there is still so much money to raise!
Where is all the love?
Think of your donation as my salary as a blogger…would you be willing to donate at least $5 for the enjoyment of what I do at FireCritic.com? I don’t get paid. Sure, there are benefits to what I do, but I am not getting rich (seriously, ask my wife!).
I donated $100 to Lt. Chris Gillett. He is $170 shy of his goal of $1000. Eric Southern is $200 shy of his goal.
If you match or exceed my donation I will send you a special gift!
Can you spare at least $5 donation? Each of you?
There are many others who are willing to shave their heads too. They need your donations.
Where does the money go? Good question. The answer is that the money raised will buy much needed bail-out bags for firefighters in the North Carolina area.
Willie Wines Jr. will be in attendance. The local news is doing a story tonight at 6pm. They are interviewing Gillett.
Brotherhood Cuts is a fund raiser. However, it isn’t just any fund raiser. This is a fund raiser that gives back to the Fire Service. This initiative isn’t masked by some huge plume of smoke disguising the purpose or sending funds somewhere else.
We raise money for the National Firefighters Endowment. The National Firefighters Endowment then gives to Fire Departments.
National Firefighters Endowment seeks to support organizations that lack the tools and resources necessary to more effectively protect the life and safety of the public and their emergency response personnel with respect to fire and all other hazards.
If you would like to start your own “Brotherhood Cuts” event for your department or organization, please let me know or email the National Firefighters Endowment (email@example.com)
The other day, I asked about firefighter tattoos on the Fire Critic Facebook Page. I got a bunch of responses as always because I have the best and most responsive fans/readers!
If you missed out on sharing your tattoo…email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will post more in a future post!
This whole thing was spurred by an email I received about tattoo policies. My department might have a tattoo policy, but it is not strict. I personally don’t have any tattoos…yet. I have wanted to get one since I was 18, but have never pulled the trigger. I want to get something that I won’t mind looking at and showing off.
Does your department have a grooming policy which includes tattoos?
One department I know just implemented a policy. Among the obvious prohibited “lewd” tattoos it includes:
- Visible tattoos must be covered up.
- Future employees are not allowed to have visible tattoos.
- Current employees may not obtain visible tattoos.
- Nothing above the shoulders is allowed.
- Tattoos must be covered up by long sleeve shirts.
- Bandages may not be used to cover up tattoos.
I will say that I think tattoos above the shoulders are unprofessional in most professions including ours. Sleeves don’t bother me, but lewd tattoos on the arms should be covered up.
What do you guys think? What is acceptable? What isn’t?
Maybe I should do a fund-raising contest that if I reach a certain goal I will get a tattoo? What do you think?
IronFiremen.com had a bunch of tattoos submitted for a contest he did a while back. Check them out here.
Here is one note that accompanied a tattoo pic:
Hey I know your looking for pics. I Had mine done to include both fire and ems, and it also includes a three leaf clover that shows some of my heritage. My tat was done by Andi at Red Octopus Tattoos in Prince Frederick, Maryland. She has done a bunch of tattoos for firefighters and fire dept art. I am including her Facebook link if you want to get in contact with her and I am including her album link. Hope this helps
Best of the Rest – Rescue Me, Shaving Heads, Mayor Called Out After Cuts, ELAFF Coming Out Video, Running with the PakNo comments
Busy…that is the only word to explain it. There is so much going on right now my head is spinning. I coach lacrosse in the spring and our season just started. I coach U9 and U11. My son is on the team. My daughter started playing as well…along with cheerleading. How do we do it all? Back in the day…were days longer? What the hell is going on here?
Did you guys notice the DCFD I added to the Fire Critic banner? Word is that Ellerbe gave me 3 days off for it.
Shoutout – Wolfpak Leatherworks
Web Site: WolfpakLeatherworks.com
Facebook: Wolfpak Leatherworks
High quality, custom made gear for your professional needs. Whether you are a Career Firefighter, a Volunteer, EMT or Medic. We can provide you with the gear that you can depend on and that will look great for years to come. We strive for quality craftsmanship and customer satisfaction. Made with pride in Northern California’s Central Valley. Become a FB friend to view our photos and track our progress. Thanks for your support! Be safe, and “Run With The Pak…”
- Vol 25-301 Communications at the Company Level.pdf
- Vol 22-263 NFPA 1410 #11 Forward Lead-out to Sprinkler Siamese.pdf
News and Opinion
Brotherhood Cuts is off to a slow start down in North Carolina…The event is this week. I just donated $100. Can I get everyone to donate $5-$25 please?
The Blog of the Year Contest for 2011-2012 Nominations are currently being accepted until March 10th. Nominate your favorite Fire and/or EMS blog here. This year, FireCritic.com teamed up with FireRescue1.com and EMS1.com for the contest. The sponsor this year is the American Military University.
Denis Leary @DenisLeary tweeted:
In case you missed it: Rescue Me was inducted into the Smithsonian, bitch! http://t.co/Rr2ises7
Backstep Firefighter - It is common in our culture and operations to expect engine companies to get as close as safely possible to the seat of the fire in order to make the most efficient attack possible (or most efficient as scientific research and field application have proven). The problem in this approach is that the experience of being tactically close is that the tell tale signs of this have led to “experience makeup.” The “salty” look is equated with aggressiveness and runs counter towards “too safe”. Read more at: THE AREA OF REFUGE AND “EXPERIENCE MAKEUP”
Firefighter Nation – Massachusetts Firefighter Has Strong Words for Mayor after Fatal Fire. Haverhill firefighter says mayor should be charged with murder. Read it here
STATter911.com - DC Fire Chief faced sexual harassment claim in Sarasota County Floriday. Washington times questions why Kenneth Ellerbe wasn’t fully vetted by Mayor Vincent Gray. Read it here
County Fire Tactics - a new blog to me…they ask “When do you wear your mask on the roof? When do you get down?” Check out the video here!
ELAFFHQ.com – The guys behind the increasingly popular fire blog ELAFFHQ.com have finally revealed their identities. Willie and I met up with the pair, Pete Sulzer and Matt Ritter, when they visited Roanoke a couple of months ago. They are great guys. They managed to keep their anonymity much longer than I thought. They revealed their identity in this post with video (also below) and they gave away some of the coveted “Lemon Wedges” as well as some freebees from MN8 FoxFire!
Speaking of MN8 FoxFire, they have free shipping right now! http://www.mn8products.com/
Green Beret Dies Trying to Save Kids in Fire - A decorated Green Beret soldier who recently returned from Afghanistan died a hero’s death at home in North Carolina. After Edward Cantrell and his wife jumped from the second floor of their burning home, he wrapped himself in a blanket and ran back inside in an attempt to save their two daughters, AP reports. “He never made it back out,” said a sheriff’s department spokeswoman. The body of the 36-year-old soldier was found near those of his daughters Isabella, 6, and Natalia, 4. Read it here
Memorial Thursday for Posen firefighter killed in New Lenox accident - A memorial service for the Posen firefighter killed in an apparent drag racing accident over the weekend will be Thursday, officials said. The service for Zachary Orel is scheduled at 7 p.m. at Parkview Christian Church, 11100 Orland Parkway in Orland Park. Before the service, firefighters will pay their respects privately, according to a Posen Fire Department news release. Orel, 25, of New Lenox, joined the department in June.
Evanston paramedic calls reach record high - Evanston’s population hasn’t budged much in the past 20 years, but paramedic calls in 2011 were up 35 percent over two decades ago. Demand for paramedic assistance set a record in 2011, with the Evanston Fire and Life Safety Services department logging 5,467 calls for Emergency Medical Service.
FireGeezer.com - Hale Products moving to Florida. Hale Products, Producers of the best-known pumps for fire apparatus, informed the workers in their home plant in Conshohocken, Pennsylvania, Monday that they will be shutting down the century-old factory and relocating their manufacturing to Ocala, Florida, by the end of the year.
Willie (IronFiremen.com) are always looking for decent products. Mostly, we don’t search around for them, they find us. Forward thinking companies have latched on to the social media, marketing, and advertising network that is slowly evolving and centered around blogging, facebook, and a couple of web sites.
NM-Coin is in the process of creating some “official” merchandise for us. This includes patches and …gasp… challenge coins. We cannot wait.
Don’t worry, we will still have the Brotherhood Chips from TheChipSite.com.
Check out NM-Coin on their web site and on Facebook.
I have talked to the guys at NM-Coin several times and they seem to be great guys. The pricing and down to earth customer service seems to be their greatest assets compared to other companies.
Here are the mock-ups for our patches and coins. Tell us what you think!
It is that time of year again…The 2012 Fire & EMS Blog of the Year Contest is here!
Actually, we are a little late out of the shoot this year, but it is even better than before!
- Judge’s Choice Fire Blog
- Reader’s Choice Fire Blog
- Judge’s Choice EMS Blog
- Reader’s Choice EMS Blog
In case you were wondering who has won in the past…
Poor Willie…I’m afraid the strain was more than he could bear.
Willie Wines Jr. (IronFiremen.com) has been writing about a local fire department. Read the articles here, here, here, and here. Willie’s unique humor on a very serious topic has uncovered some interesting and debatable topics.
But the fact remains that we have a local Chief bucking the hiring of a County-wide Fire/EMS Director. The unfortunate part is the Chief’s choice of words in news articles. He made the department (not our department) look like a bunch of idiots. I am sure not all of them are the caliber of the Chief…but then again they wouldn’t except his resignation when he tried to resign either.
Read Willie’s articles for the big picture.
After writing each article, Willie went deeper and deeper into hiding. He is scared that the Chief is going to kick his ass.
Apparently the stress was more than he could bear.
Word is that the Buckaroo is on a 24 hour watch…sitting in a rocking chair on his front porch with a red tipped pistol, his knife (with zip securing it), some bug juice, and a tonka truck. Rest assured that the Buckaroo has things under control.
Willie, on the other hand, has me working for him today. Luckily for me, the last word on where Willie was holed up was in my bunkroom at firehouse #3…which is unfortunate for Lt. Bradford who is on duty tonight. Don’t worry, he sleeps sound and won’t know what got him.
As for me, I am sleeping in Willie’s bed tonight. We have had a decent day today. Ole Big Head Todd (Harris) is wheeling and Max Meadows Armbruiser is riding backwards.
Chief Adkins stopped by and we caught up. Todd and Chief had some good stories about “back in the day” which were well worth the listen.
Randy (Arm Bruiser) has been haggling with everyone today. Apparently he is supposed to move into his apartment in the morning and everything has gone to hell. His furniture was last seen at a flea market in Kentucky and he can’t get Dish network to install anything.
I am no stranger to #13. I have put in about 6 years out here on the Peters Creek Express. Actually, I was there when they put the new Engine 13 in service.
If anyone <cough…cough> needs directions to Willie’s house just let me know. Working double shifts is killing me.