Funeral information for Phoenix FD Firefighter Bradley Harper: (link to info)
Funeral Ceremony on Friday, May 24th at 2:30 p.m. at:
Christ’s Church of the Valley (CCV)
7007 W. Happy Valley Road
Peoria, AZ 85383
Procession and Internment to follow at:
Greenwood Memorial Cemetery
719 N. 27th Avenue
Phoenix, AZ 85009
Virginia Firefighter LODD Memorial is on June 1st this year. If you are planning on attending, have a question, or need more information, check out the Facebook event here.
FirefighterWife.com: Here is an article about the recent LODD’s and a view from a Firefighters Wife. Read it here
Vote for Hack: Brian Hackenburg is in the running for “Kona Inspired 2013″. Vote for him here (bottom left of video)
IronFiremen.com: Captain Wines headed to Harrisburg, PA for the Fire Expo 2013 without me. He did leave me a souvenir though…he burned up my van on the way! Read about his trip here.
Moore, OK Update:
The death toll has been adjusted from 51 to 24 at this time. There are hundreds of injured, and over 100 have been rescued from the devastation.
The tornado was over 2 miles wide and covered around 22 miles becoming an EF4/EF5 tornado with wind speeds between 166-200 miles per hour.
The City of Moore and City of Oklahoma City will hold a joint press conference at Noon, Tuesday May 21st, at Moore City Hall, 301 N Broadway. Information about recovery efforts and other details will be shared at this time.
Moore, Oklahoma was the scene of a horrific natural disaster today. Moore is south of Oklahoma City. A mile wide EF4 tornado decimated the area. The death toll is currently 51 (11pm) including 7 children at the Plaza Towers Elementary School in Moore. There are 233 reported injured.
The preliminary rating of damage created by the tornado is at least EF4 (winds 166 to 200 mph) — the second-most severe classification on a scale of zero to five
I have read a lot about it being a “recovery” effort instead of a “search” effort. I am not sure that the firefighters have the same thoughts on the ground. Word is that Tennessee Task Force 1 is being deployed to the area to assist (news link).
Moore Fire Department
Just to give you a snapshot of the Moore FD, they operate with 72 firefighters out of 4 firehouses covering 22 square miles.
The area is no stranger to tornadoes. In May of 1999, there was another huge tornado that killed dozens and recorded wind speeds of 302 miles per hour (the fastest recorded on earth).
The lives of the firefighters and EMTs who died battling the West, Texas fire and explosion will be remembered during a memorial service on Thursday, April 25 at 2:00 p.m., Central Time. Thousands of firefighters from around the country will join President Obama and the First Lady to pay respects to the families, friends and co-workers of the fallen. If you would like to include live video of the memorial service on your website the NFFF has compiled a list embed codes from the local media sources. There may be additional resources that you may wish to use, these were just a few that we were able to locate.
Emmitsburg, MD – Thousands of firefighters from around the country will join President Obama and the First Lady to pay respects to the families, friends and co-workers of the 12 firefighters who died battling the West, Texas fire and explosion. The memorial service will begin on Thursday, April 25 at 2:00 p.m., Central Time, at Baylor University’s Ferrell Center at 1900 South University Parks Drive, Waco, Texas 76706.
All apparatus to participate in the procession should report to the staging area located at 2501 S. University Parks Drive, Waco, TX 76706 (the Old HEB Terminal) between 6 – 9 a.m. The procession of apparatus to the Ferrell Center will begin at 10 a.m.
Free shuttles will take members of the fire service from Lots C and D at Baylor University to the procession staging area between 6 – 9 a.m. The procession of uniformed personnel will begin at 11 a.m.
Department specific Class A or equivalent uniform can be worn with white gloves and black badge covers if available. If no uniform is available, business dress attire is appropriate. Fire service appliances such as axes, pike poles, ceremonial swords or knives are prohibited at Ferrell Center. There will be an area provided for Honor Guards to store their colors at Ferrell Center.
For others attending the memorial service, doors at the Ferrell Center will open at 11 a.m. All attendees will go through airport-like security and should bring as few personal items as possible. No bags, sharp objects, umbrellas, liquids, firearms, or signs will be allowed in the venue. Cameras and cell phones are permitted.
Live streaming will also be available on the Foundation’s website, www.firehero.org/westtexas.
Since last Thursday, the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF) and our partners, the Texas LODD Task Force, have been on the ground in Texas offering assistance and support to the departments, families and friends through the Local Assistance State Team (LAST). Because of the large loss of life, the Foundation expects to be here for a lengthy period of time, providing peer counseling, and support in many other ways. To help those efforts, the NFFF has established a national fund to accept monetary donations to assist the survivors and coworkers of the fire and EMS personnel who died in the line of duty. All donated funds will be used to assist the survivors and coworkers to rebuild their lives and support the programs and services they will need.
Checks can be mailed to:
NFFF c/o West, Texas Fire and EMS Fallen Hero Fund
P.O. Drawer 498
Emmitsburg, MD 21727.
Donations also can be made by credit card at www.regonline.com/westtx.
This is going to be a long post, actually several posts in one…so bear with me.
Captain Wines and I are in Indianapolis for FDIC. We got in last night and headed over to the FOOLS bash. We didn’t make it to the FSW meetup, but I heard that it was enjoyable. Our full itinerary can be seen here. More on FDIC in a minute as you scroll through this post.
A former leader of the Charleston Fire Department has passed away.
ABC News 4 has learned that former fire chief Thomas Carr died following a battle with MSA, a rapid form of Parkinson’s disease. He was 59 years old.
Chief Carr was hired as Charleston’s fire chief in 2008. He helped reshape and redefine the department following the 2007 Sofa Super Store fire that killed nine Charleston firefighters.
Baltimore County Firefighter Critical
Reisterstown VFC Firefighter Gene Kirchner in critical condition. Firefighter Kirchner was found unconscious on the 2nd floor during a house fire. A 58-year-old man was found dead in the house. STATter911.com has coverage here and here.
As other firefighters tackled the flames, Winter negotiated his way into the adjacent room in his search for 2-year-old Dylan Burkett.
“I couldn’t see him. It was pitch black with smoke,” he said. “After going in the second bedroom I kept hearing a small cry, and every time I heard a cry, I went in that direction and found him.
“He was in a corner on a bed just sitting there. Once I could tell he was still crying, it was a good feeling, and once I got him outside, it felt pretty good.”
Highland Park Rescue Video
Video by: HPZ1442. Video info: We responded to a report of flames showing from the side and front windows of a liquor store on the 1st floor of a 4 story apt building. We arrived to find smoke and flames showing, and that the Police Dept had already evacuated the occupants of the building. The liquor store was sealed up pretty tight and it took us a few extra minutes to get into it. While we worked on that, PD informed us that they may have heard screams on the 2nd floor while they cleared the building but that it was to smokey to go check. # of us responded to the main entrance and to the second floor where we found smokey conditions and limited visibility. PD and one of our off duty FF’s informed of the apt number the woman was believed to live in. The manager had said she was unaccounted for. We masked up and advanced in to find her. She was found in her unit, and carried out by Firefighter Eason. We were then informed of another possible victim. We went back in to search for him but while searching his apt we were informed that he had already made it out. My camera died at this point because I cannot seem to remember to charge it!
At this time fire had extended into the 2nd and 3rd floors. We advanced hose lines through the windows from units adjacent to those that were on fire. The fire was brought under control in a little more than an hour. We operated on scene for several more cleaning up hot spots. We contained the fire to damaging only the liquor store where it had originated, and 4 apt units.
Used a firecam 1080 from firevideo.net any sound you hear cut out is not from the camera, I actually edit some of the content out of it.
The Texas LODD Task Force is announcing the details on the combined memorial service for the families of first responders that were killed in the tragic events that occurred in the city of West, Texas.
Memorial service starts at 2pm on Thursday April 25, 2013 at the Ferrell Center on Baylor University Campus. The address for the Ferrell Center is 1900 S. University Parks Drive, Waco TX 76706.
All apparatus wishing to participate in the apparatus procession need to report to the staging area between 6am-9am. The apparatus staging area is located at 2501 S. University Parks Dr., Waco TX 76706 at the Old HEB Terminal.
All Uniformed personnel wishing to walk in the procession to the Ferrell Center need to report to the same staging area between 6am-10am. There will be parking and security for vehicles.
Visiting Honor Guards are encouraged to bring their colors for the walking procession. An area at the Ferrell Center will be set aside for Honor Guards to store their equipment during the services.
Apparatus procession will begin moving from the staging area to the Ferrell Center at 11:00 am. And the walking procession will step off at 12:00pm from the staging area to the Ferrell Center
All uniformed personnel will be at the Ferrell Center and begin seating by 1pm. Doors will open for the public after the walking Uniformed Personnel have entered the Ferrell Center.
TX LODD Task Force logistics is working on providing food, water, tents, etc. to the staging area, those participating are encourage to bring their own snacks and water as this will be a long day.
The victims identities in the West, Texas fertilizer plant explosion are still being processed. I have still not seen any “official” word on exactly who died and what their role was at the scene. Below you will find that there are currently believed to be 9 firefighters dead after the tragedy. The 9 firefighters represent several departments.
Their “role” will be important in the future…right now, it really doesn’t matter to me. These souls were lost in an enormous tragedy that will have a small community rebuilding for years to come. The toll it had on the West Volunteer Fire Department is amazing in itself. From reports, it seems as though they had 5 firefighters die in the explosion; 11 firefighters injured and hospitalized; and 3 fire apparatus destroyed.
There will be “official” word soon. Until then, I will repost the names I posted in this article with the addition of 1 name, Cody Dragoo. I did not read anything about his death until today.
The people listed below are believed to be 12 of the 14 confirmed deaths in the blast.
West Volunteer Fire Department Members
Morris Bridges, 41. Firefighter for West VFD. Fire Sprinkler Technician for Action Fire Pros.
Cody Dragoo, 50. Firefighter for West VFD. Foreman at West Fertilizer Co.
Robert Snokhous, 48. Firefighter for West VFD. Employee at Central Texas Iron Works.
Doug Snokhous, 50. Firefighter for West VFD. Employee at Central Texas Iron Works.
Joey Pustejovsky. Firefighter for West VFD. City of West Secretary.
In addition to those above, the people below also are believed to have died in the blast. Their role, response, and department they were responding for are not exactly known at this time. Some of the people below may NOT have been responding as Fire and/or EMS personnel. It is believed that some (possibly 4) of the people below were responding as EMS personnel even though they are volunteer firefighters.
Perry Calvin, 37. Firefighter for Mertens and Navarro Mills VFDs. Student at Hill College Fire Academy.
Jerry Chapman, 26. Firefighter for Abbott VFD.
Jimmy Matus, 52. Owner of Westex Welding in West, Texas.
Cyrus Reed. Firefighter for Abbott VFD. Worked at Waxahachie plant.
Buck Uptmor, 40′s. Owner of a fencing company and lived near West. *listed some places as a Firefighter for West VFD.
Kenny Harris, 52. Dallas FD Fire Captain.
Kevin Sanders is listed as missing. He is a member of Bruceville-Eddy VFD. He was attending the EMS class in West that night and was one of the initial first responders to the fire.
Update: 14 bodies have now been found in the wake of the explosion in West, Texas
Below you will find the names and photos of the reported dead or missing fire & EMS responders in West, Texas. The sources for the information are marked if you would like more information. Some have been confirmed as dead, others are reported as missing after responding to the explosion.
I will update as more information is available. Some of this information is not “official”, but pulled from local reports and online postings from friends and family. It should also be noted that the members may have been members of a certain department but actually responding with a different department or organization. Not all of this information has been verified fully, we have simply shared information from multiple sources.
Scroll Down for information on those missing or deceased
West, Texas Stats: 12 confirmed deaths, 200 injuries reported, 150 buildings destroyed, 50 buildings cleared by search and rescue teams, 25 buildings yet to be cleared, 3 fire trucks destroyed, 1 EMS vehicle destroyed.
The members below who are reported missing and or dead include:
West Volunteer Firefighters: Morris Bridges, Robert Snokhous, Doug Snokhous, Joey Pustejovsky, Cyrus A. Reed, and Buck Uptmor. (This info is from the reports below. According to other reports, only 5 current West VFD members died in the explosion).
Kevin Sanders and Jim Matus (unknown agency)
West Ambulance Service Member: Perry Calvin, Jerry Chapman (also Abbot VFD Firefighter)
Dallas FD (off-duty): Captain Kenny Harris
In addition to these Fire & EMS Personnel, 11 West, Texas Firefighters remain in the hospital.
UPDATE: The bodies have been moved back to Dallas. The bodies were transferred under Law Enforcement and Fire Department escorts. The bodies are being guarded as we speak. We are more than thankful for the overwhelming support. Please be patient as we are trying to respond to all of the emails, text, and phone calls. We are recieving over a 100 email/text/ and phone calls a day. We are working very hard to contact everyone! Thank you for the Continued support and feel free to keep contacting us just leave us a message.
Guard schedule is being produced as we speak, please know this will require help from across the state. We will be doing a 24 hour guard till further notice. If you have not submitted your information please email email@example.com or text 940.368.8311 with your availability. We could be standing guard for a few weeks and we will make it happen. If you are not from the area and would like to help just send the email. We have numerous Fire Departments in the metroplex who have offered to house Firefighters that would like to come in town and help. Thank You all for the continued support!
WEST (April 19, 2013)–A spokesman for the Department of Public Safety at a Friday morning news conference in West confirmed 12 bodies have been recovered from the area around the West Fertilizer plant that exploded Wednesday night in West. DPS Sgt. Jason Reyes said all of the remains have been taken to the Southwest Institute of Forensic Sciences, in Dallas, for positive identification. Reyes said he could not confirm how many of the dead are first responders. He also said three fire trucks and one ambulance were destroyed in the blast. … Muska told CNN that seven West firefighters died in the blast Wednesday night along with two others, but provided no further details.
Captain Kenny Harris
Dallas FD Captain Kenny Harris
Age: 52; Married father of two. Off-duty Dallas FD Captain Kenny Harris was killed in the explosion. Captain Harris, who is a resident of West, went to help the volunteers of West with the fire according to reports.
Harris, a 52-year-old father of three, was among the multiple fatalities. Reportedly off-duty when the tragedy struck, Harris did what he was trained to do — help. The Dallas Fire-Rescue captain lived in the community, but has worked for the city of Dallas for nearly 31 years.
Calvin, 37; married with two children and one due on Thanksgiving. Calvin responded to the scene with West Ambulance Service and responded to the initial call.
Calvin was a firefighter with the Navarro Mills Volunteer Fire Department since 1996 and Mertens Volunteer Fire Department since 2012.
Calvin worked as a rancher, carpenter, welder and mechanic, but was in training to become an Emergency Medical Technician, which is why he was training with the West Ambulance service. It was also why he and his partner were called upon when the fire began. “He was at EMT class at West last night,” explained Perry’s father, Phil Calvin. “He and another boy responded to the fire alarm for West fire department and they got at the fire scene before the explosion. They were both right there at the explosion site.”
Phil Calvin said the family couldn’t get “definite confirmation” of his son’s death but admitted the possibility of his survival was bleak. “It’s been over 24 hours. He would have gotten hold of somebody,” he said late Thursday. “They do know that the guy he was with — they found his body (Wednesday) night. I was told they found (Perry Calvin’s) body this afternoon, but the ATF won’t confirm that.”
Chapman, 26; Student Firefighter with Abbot Volunteer Fire Department (Abbott, Texas)
A 26 year old volunteer firefighter is among those killed in the fertilizer explosion in West Texas, according to friends. Jerry Chapman was in class at the time the call went out for the initial fire at West Fertilizer Company. His friends and co-workers say he would not have missed a chance to go help people. “He worked for the Abbot Volunteer Department. He was happy. He loved working for them,” said Sharon Matthews, who worked with Chapman for 8 years.
Co-workers told NBC 5 that Jerry Chapman, 20, a volunteer EMS, was also killed in the blast. Chapman worked at the Black Eyed Pea in Hillsboro, and the restaurant is holding a fundraiser to help his family pay for funeral expenses. The rest will be donated to charity.
Firefighter for West, Texas; Three children ages 2, 17 and 18.
Brent Bridges, 18, told the Star-Telegram that his father, Morris Bridges, was told that he probably didn’t survive.
A Facebook page dedicated to the memory of firefighters who lost their lives in the explosion included Morris Bridges and Buck Uptmor, both West Volunteer Fire Department firefighters. Brothers and West volunteer firefighters Robert and Doug Snokhous also were missing.
“He was the first respond for the West fire department, and we haven’t heard from him since, and everybody is gone from the fire station and his car is still sitting there. We went to all the hospitals; he’s not at any of the hospitals,” said Mills. “I’m thinking he’s died a hero; I really do.”
On Thursday afternoon Mills confirmed to NBC 5 that Bridges died in the explosion.
He had three children ages 2, 17 and 18.
Robert Snokhous & Doug Snokhous (Brothers)
Robert and Doug are brothers who are both firefighters in West, Texas.
Marqee Snokhous, who lives in Florida, told reporters she spent the early morning calling every hospital in hopes of finding that her father, Robert Snokhous, and uncle were among the injured. Her calls haven’t panned out, and as of 12:30 p.m. Thursday, she said the family still had not received confirmation about the fate of her father or uncle. “There’s not been anything official but the mayor did call my stepmom,” she said. “He told her that he’s pretty sure that they’re both inside the business in the plant, trapped in there. And that there’s a pretty high probability that there’s no survivors there.”
Joey Pustejovsky, West’s city secretary, volunteers as a town firefighter and “was there doing his job and he put his life in harm’s way to protect the people that he needed to protect,” said his brother-in-law, David Sebesta. He said Pustejovsky, 63[?], and his sister were married on March 10, 2012 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church of the Assumption in West.
Joey Pustejovsky, West’s city secretary, volunteers as a town firefighter and “was there doing his job and he put his life in harm’s way to protect the people that he needed to protect,” said his brother-in-law, David Sebesta.
A Facebook page dedicated to the memory of firefighters who lost their lives in the explosion included Morris Bridges and Buck Uptmor, both West Volunteer Fire Department firefighters. Brothers and West volunteer firefighters Robert and Doug Snokhous also were missing. Uptmor was confirmed deceased by his family, according to the page.
West Mayor Tommy Muska said state responders, who have helped organize the search and rescue operation, told him that 80 percent of the devastated areas, including a nursing home and 50-unit apartment complex, have been searched so far. Teams have found eight to 10 bodies and expect to find at least a half dozen more at the West Fertilizer Co. facility when they can search those grounds.
WEST, Texas — Around 35 people, including 10 first responders, were killed in the Texas fertilizer company explosion Wednesday night, West Mayor Tommy Muska said in an interview with USA TODAY.
The dead include five members of the West Volunteer Fire Department who were trying to put out the initial blaze, four EMS workers and an off-duty Dallas firefighter who pitched in to help, Muska said. Not all the bodies have been recovered but all are assumed dead.
Two volunteers who showed up to help fight the blaze are also missing and presumed dead, he said.
The rest of the fatalities include residents from nearby homes in the devastated four-block area of this small north-central Texas town 20 miles north of Waco, the mayor added.
There still hasn’t been any update on the confirmed deaths. There are mixed reports on firefighter, EMT, and Police Officer deaths at this point. The latest estimate on the death toll is 15 total, but that is a rough estimate without any concrete information. 3-4 firefighters are being reported as missing. The injuries reported around 160 currently.
It is easy to understand that there are some first responder deaths. After all, firefighters were on scene battling the fire when the explosion occurred. All we can do right now is wait until the area can be thoroughly searched for survivors and those who have perished. Firefighters from all over the area are on scene helping out in the rescue/search efforts.
I will continue to update as new and “official” information is available.
Search and rescue teams were combing the crumbled sites in hopes of finding survivors. More than 160 injured people have been taken to hospitals, and emergency responders believe more victims might be trapped alive.
That “is good news to me,” Sgt W. Patrick Swanton, the Waco police spokesman handling media briefings in West, said early Thursday morning. Authorities have “not gotten to the point of no return.”
At a later media briefing about 10 a.m., Swanton added: “It’s a very slow, methodical search.”
Swanton repeated an earlier figure of five to 15 people killed but said that’s based on “very limited” information from “folks at the scene,” including local, state and federal officials. Three to four West volunteer firefighters who were at the plant when it exploded shortly before 8 p.m. Wednesday remain missing.
However, one emergency worker who had been reported as missing, a constable serving as a volunteer firefighter, was found hospitalized with “serious” injuries.
A major explosion occurred Wednesday night at a fertilizer plant in the city of West, near Hillsboro in north-central Texas – killing between five and 15 people and injuring at least 160 more. Three to four firefighters who were battling the fire that occurred before the explosion are unaccounted for.
Waco Police Spokesperson Sgt. William Patrick Swanton said a fire began Wednesday evening at the West Fertilizer plant. Fifty minutes later, an explosion was reported in a frantic radio call from the scene of the fire at the plant at 1471 Jerry Mashek Dr. just off Interstate 35. Authorities said there is no indication that the blast was anything but an accident.
Teams of first responders descended on the devastated town of West, Texas, early Thursday where a massive explosion at a fertilizer plant left scores of casualties and turned homes to rubble.
The number of dead remained unclear, with police saying it could be between five and 15. More than 160 people were injured and “three to four” firefighters were missing or unaccounted for, officials said.
Firefighters were battling the blaze that precipitated the explosion Wednesday night. And a storm system heading into the area brought helpful rain — but also heavy winds that might make it much tougher to contain the fire.
Rescuers were conducting another door-to-door search early Thursday for the living and the dead in areas damaged by a massive fertilizer plant explosion in West that left more than 100 injured and may have killed dozens.
As of 4:45, officials say five to fifteen people are believed to be dead.
Six firefighters and two paramedics are confirmed dead and seven nursing home residents were missing after the blast according to West EMS Director Dr. George Smith, who said earlier Wednesday night as many as 60 or 70 people may have died in the blast.
“I can’t confirm the number of casualties, but I can tell you that we do have casualties,” said Waco police spokesman Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton at a 4:35 a.m. news conference. “I can tell you that it is estimated anywhere from five to 15 at this point.”
At 4:15 a.m., West, Texas EMS director Dr. George Smith confirmed that two paramedics lost their lives in Tuesday night’s explosion at West Fertilizer Company. He said six firefighters remained unaccounted for.
A powerful explosion rocked the town of West, Texas, 19 miles north of Waco, on Wednesday evening.
“We’ve heard that figure of 60 to 70 dead that’s coming from the county’s emergency management office down here,” said WFAA reporter Todd Unger a short distance from the blast epicenter. “I can tell you that a couple of law enforcement soucres expect that number to go up.”
Several firefighters and others were injured in a fertilizer plant explosion in West shortly before 8 p.m.
Multiple buildings caught on fire, including West Intermediate School, 1212 N. Reagan St., after the explosion at West Fertilizer Co., 1471 Jerry Mashek Drive, and a dispatcher calling for ambulances said “we do have a lot of injured here.”
LATEST 7:46 PM: Suspect dead. Four firefighters & police officer minor injuries. Superficial wounds to firefighters from flash-bang. Officer shot in hand or arm. Police moved in because they thought firefighters were in danger.
Police say firefighters will be back home with their families tonight. Below is the initial radio traffic from Engine 10.
I have been busy at the FireCritic.com Headquarters. I am remodeling the office and hope to have it done in the next couple of months. I have also been busy getting some great information and videos up on the site. Be sure to check out FireCritic.com daily for some great content. In addition to the web site, I supplement the site with even more content on The Fire Critic Facebook Page. Join over 23,000 friends/fans/readers on FB!
For potential advertisers, I recently updated the advertising page. My advertisers are extremely happy with the Return On Investment (ROI) they get through advertising on FireCritic.com. There are many ways to get your company and products featured on the site. Read more about it here!
As always, if you have something to share on “Best of the Rest”, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bill Carey writes about the need to discuss Line of Duty Deaths and how to do it respectfully. The topic is taboo to many of us, but we must not fail to learn from the loss of our Brother and Sister Firefighters. Read “Never Ask The Dead”.
Medic 22 is back on the scene with an article about ANOTHER EMS blogger, this one in Virginia. Medic 22 doesn’t like what he read and told the blogger about it…as well as Virginia EMS. Read about it here
Speaking of EMS…Dave Statter has the story on the Crybaby Anti-Semite FDNY EMS Lt. Timothy Dluhos who ranted on twitter about his boss (Mayor Bloomberg). When confronted by two female reporters about his tweets…you guessed it, Dluhos cried like a baby. WHAT A BITCH! Read it all here.
FireNews.net has a great story about a Junior Firefighter who built a heli-pad at his firehouse for his Eagle Scout project. The helipad was quickly put to use for an emergency! Read bout it here
Video below by Mike Nester (firtog). Video info: Just before noon time on St. Patrick’s Day Emmaus Firefighters are dispatched to the area of 5th and Jubilee for a reported apartment fire with entrapment. Crews arrive on location to heavy fire on the top floors and immediately stretch lines to attempt to make a fire attack and attempt search and rescue. As crews made the attack conditions rapidly deteriorated and the evacuation order was given putting units into a defensive mode. several lines and a ladder pipe were placed in service making a hit on the fire, at least one person was taken to the hospital and the coroners office was requested to the scene, the fire is currently under investigation.. http://nestervideoproduction.blogspot… https://www.facebook.com/pages/Nester…
Video below by Bill Rohrer (newsworking). Video info: At 11:53 AM Lehigh County Fire Radio transmitted the box for 36 South 5th Street for a building fire sending Station 7. As it was being dispatched, police radioed the Comm Center requesting the fire department to that location. The officers were attempting to rescue tenants from the burning building.
The first-out engine had heavy smoke visible from the fire house and requested the 2nd alarm transmitted. At 11:57, Lehigh County struck the 2nd alarm sending stations 7, 28, 30, Rescue 1-41 (F.A.S.T.), EMS 62 & 66. The fast moving fire trapped multiple tenants. Witnesses said a 52 year-old woman was unable to get out. Command ordered all firefighters out of the building and commenced a defensive attack. The roof of the building partially collapsed. The time on the DashCam is not correct.
I know I am a little late on this one, but non-the-less it is a great video(s). This video will probably be utilized in training for years to come. The fire occurred at 600 Frank E. Rodgers Blvd. in Harrison.More coverage by STATter911.com here.
Five firefighters were hurt in a terrifying explosion and extra-alarm blaze in Harrison, N.J., Sunday afternoon.
.. when the fire was at its height, a dangerous backdraft was caught on video, CBS 2’s Steve Langford reported. Backdrafts are an explosive phenomenon, and they are one of the worst things that can go wrong in a firefight.
One of those badly hurt when the backdraft erupted was a battalion chief.
“When that glass blew out, he got it all in his face and his body,” said Harrison fire Capt. Robert Gillen. “He was bleeding profusely.”
I will be posting our itinerary when it gets a little closer. You will be able to find Captain Wines and I split between the MN8 Foxfire booth #5571 and Black Diamond Group booth #2401.
It’s promotional testing time again. This is one of the books I bought. I would love to tell you what it is, but I would have to kill you. We aren’t allowed posting the text book list online according to a memo. I wish I could tell you more about the $230 purchase I made on the books…but I can’t. BTW, this is not one of the books on the list.
In case you missed it, I was busy this weekend with a series of videos on FireCritic.com. Check them out here:
True North is giving away a scholarship (paid trip to FDIC). This year, they renamed the program “Lt. Richard A. Nappi Training Scholarship”. Read more about it here
Since 2010, True North has provided training scholarships for firefighters to attend the 2013 Fire Department Instructors Conference (FDIC) so they continue to get the training they need to stay safe and protect the safety of others. This year True North had renamed its FDIC Training Scholarship in honor of Lt. Richard A. Nappi.
Challenge Coins – I collect challenge coins and trade them. If you would like to purchase one of our coins, check out NM Coin. That is the only place you can get them unless you catch us with one to spare. If you would like to trade, let me know at email@example.com. Below is the National Firefighters Endowment Officer’s Club Chief level coin. Mine is number 005. Learn more about the Officer’s Club here.
This is my Officer’s Club coin from the National Firefighters Endowment. To learn more about the Officer’s Club and get your own coin, check out this link.
Video by Vasiliy Stadnik (Vstadnik).You can see the rescue at 8:40 into the video. Utica, NY Firefighters rescue a 4 year old girl in municipal apartment fire at 1600 block Armory Drive in Utica Friday. News on the fire here. Posted by STATter911.com originally.
My opinion of having felons in the fire service is no secret. I don’t think felons should be firefighters…period. That being said, I have kept my mind open to comments in the past and have often extended the question to those who disagree with me “Name a good felony”. My intention isn’t to rehash this topic necessarily. I am actually looking for thoughts on these new developments out of New York State.
Read over the following article, check the links, and then let me know if you think this is a good idea or not.
I have heard from felons. Some holding high ranks within the fire service. They have been very cordial in offering their story, their deal, their thoughts. I have appreciated every one of them. I have never cast them away or told them to go pound sand. I have embraced those who have made good on their past indiscretions and turned their lives around. However, I still feel as though we have too many great people to chose from than to have felons as firefighters.
When Joseph Carilli became chief of Connecticut’s Coventry Volunteer Fire Association in 2006 he made the news. That’s because Carilli had served eight months in prison in 1985 when he was 24-years-old after being accused of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl. According to Courant.com, Carilli told reporters in 2006, ”It was a very bad situation and it should have never occurred. I’ve changed my life 180 degrees since then.” If the news over the last six months is any guide, it appears Chief Carilli really changed his life 360 degrees.
My point is simple. They said they had changed…but they hadn’t.
Need more examples? Captain Wines detailed the downward spiral in Botetourt County, VA with their already convicted felon and Fire Chief Billy Joe Carter in this series of articles here. I believe Carter is still incarcerated…but he was cleaned up…or so they say.
You should read the story. FDNY hasn’t willingly opened its doors to felons. As a matter of fact, the city’s notice to applicants still states that convicted felons “are not eligible for appointment to this position.”
The FDNY will consider hiring convicted felons with a “Certificate of Good Conduct” from the state parole board, the department said in a notice posted last week. Such applicants will get a “special review.”
The notice to potential applicants includes the text of a state law aimed at stopping employment discrimination against ex-cons who have done time and stayed clean.
“It’s not something we signed up for or control. It’s something we have to abide by,” said FDNY spokesman Jim Long.
Sources said the posting stems from the court case in which Brooklyn federal Judge Nicholas Garaufis has ordered the FDNY to remedy racial imbalances.
I have seen other departments open their doors to felons. Richmond, VA and Bridgeport, CT being two that come to mind.
I don’t object to someone being given a second chance, depending upon the circumstances of each individual case and there being strong, verifiable evidence that the person involved is truly repentant and has exhibited this repentance over a long period of time. One of my statements that wasn’t included in the reporting is that, “I don’t want these Certificates handed out like candy”. [original story here]
About Merit Matters:
Merit Matters is an advocacy group dedicated to preserving merit in the FDNY testing, hiring and promotion process. To achieve this we will attempt to:
- Work within the FDNY on issues of mutual concern
- Counter false claims and information disseminated by others
- Seek relief from outside agencies when necessary
- Educate and engage the public through use of the media
- Demand equal treatment for all, which means special privilege for none.
We believe in equal opportunity, not guaranteed results. We want standards to be high, meaningful, equally applied and blind to race, gender or ethnicity. Written and physical exams should ensure that the MOST QUALIFIED applicants are chosen; they should NOT be designed to have as many applicants as possible pass
The full details of what happened and to who are still coming in. Firefighters were injured in a 4 alarm fire at Penn Lumber this evening in Baltimore City. The fire began at Penn Lumber in the 600 block of Pennsylvania Avenue around 5:40 p.m. today. The fire quickly spread to other nearby buildings.
The first responding firefighters entered the building but moments later, the incident commander determined it was unsafe and ordered the evacuation. As they were leaving, the building collapsed, briefly trapping five firefighters. They were injured but none had life-threatening injuries. They’ve been taken to Shock Trauma.
Video by detroitfire3916 : E-46 stretching on a dwelling, we had another one going 1 block over & called for a separate box alarm. This dwelling was going through out & required 2- 1 1/2″ handlines, first line made entry on the first floor & second line was taken through the dormer window. Dave Statter also ran the video here.
I admit that one of the coolest things about The Fire Critic Facebook Page is the questions that the readers ask me either via message or on the page. They want answers. They want the truth. They can’t handle..alright enough of that. The questions range from broad to detailed and encompass the entire scope of Fire & EMS. I appreciate the questions and try to share every one of them on the page. You will see them in the form of a question followed by [ - Question from a Brother]. Keep them rolling. The last one I put up was one I thought of all on my own (I do that occasionally…think that is). The question “Do you wear your wedding ring on duty? Why or why not?” is sitting at 207 comments.
Rom Duckworth writes at Rescue Digest. Recently he belted out an excellent article on Brotherhoodand then he followed that up with an article about The Fire Critic and Iron Firemen. It is nice to get a little press every now and again. We met Rom in Denver last year at FRI, although that might not have been the first time. Thanks Rom!
Rescuing Providenceis passing along some great information from the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation and Everyone Goes Home Program. RESPONSE TO VIOLENT INCIDENTS: Nine Questions You Should Ask. Questions inspired by 2012 Violent Incident Summit with IAFC, CFSI, NFFF, NFPA & NVFC. Read more about it here.
Dave Statter has an interesting story about Firefighters having some fun and others finding it to be hazing. I think where they went wrong was going out in public with the messed up hair-cuts. We have to at least look professional! Read about it here.
The Disputanta VFD (VA) is the latest to offer great helmet camera footage. They even used some dash camera footage in this house fire video from the 16th of January. Check out the video here.
FireGeezer has the story about 50% something EMS is messed up in Detroit. Am I the only one who feels horrible for these guys? We read every day about how freakin bad it is up there….is there any light at the end of the tunnel? Read about the latest news here.
The National Firefighters Endowment is proud to present a check on behalf of the Officers Club, to Union Deposit Fire Company #47, to purchase new air cylinders. These air cylinders will allow their firefighters to safely enter hazardous conditions to perform life and property saving services to their community. Check out more on the story here.
Benjamin A. Metzger, represented the Officers Club, presented the Union Deposit Fire Company #47 their check for $5000.
I will leave you with a two alarm chimney fire in North Whitehall, PA
Willie is hanging out with Zach and Kelly down in Daytona, Florida this week. As usual, they are having a blast. Unfortunately, I am not with them. I am still in Virginia. This weekend, the family is heading to Richmond (my old stomping ground) for my daughters cheerleading competition. More than likely, Preston and I will be tooling around Richmond looking for some trouble to get into at some point in time.
If you were paying attention to the Fire Critic Facebook Page (nearing 20k fans), you probably notices all of the pictures of firefighters boots. I cannot believe the outpouring of support for our Brother Willie Wines Jr. The reason for the boots was to show support for our Brother in getting back to work. The good news is that he will be back to work soon and is all set to get back with a note from the City Doctor. The even greater news is that he is on vacation for a couple of days and is down in Florida!
You will also notice two new advertisers on FireCritic.com. Both GloveCrafters.com and FireVideo.net (Fire Cam) are advertising with us now. If you get a chance, check them out. Both have excellent products!
I haven’t had the time to put together a “Best of the Rest” post in several weeks. Therefore, there is a ton of links below…and there are even more that I have missed.
Lexington, Kentucky had an apparatus roll on its side due to icy roads today. No firefighters were injured in the accident. Engine Company 8 is located in the Northside of the City. The images were shared by Captain A of Truckie Talk(FB link).
Dave Statter continues to put the mainstream fire service sites to shame with his rag STATter911.com. He often scoops the other sites first with the most compelling fire service news out there. Here are a few that you shouldn’t have missed:
A Siberian firefighter, in the city of Magadan, trying to reach people trapped in a building is sent tumbling down the ladder after being hit by a chunk of snow falling from the roof while smoke is coming out of the windows. Thankfully, the firefighters were able to save a child, carrying the kid down the ladder. Emergency officials say no one was hurt.
One of our biggest contributors to The Fire Critic, Youtube, made it big on the Huffington Post AND STATter911.com. I can’t believe how we have been able to propel Youtube to its current status…and we certainly appreciate everything that Youtube has sent us in the past. Next thing you know I will be inventing a hose stretcher!
This is like looking into a mirror at a mirror…where is the end?
Actually, this is a little spoof on Dave Statter taking all of the credit for the work that Firefighter Scott Ziegler (HPZ1442 on Youtube) has done on the job and captured with a helmet camera. The latest video is at compilation of his footage for the past year.
Don’t worry, this isn’t the last time that Dave will take credit for someone else…or feel slighted when a larger site like the Huff Post beats him to the punch.
I put together a bunch of clips from some of the better helmet cam footage I got this year while fighting fires in Highland Park. I had to replace several lens’s and a couple mounts throughout the year, so the camera was not always on my helmet. I used a contour ROAM. other then the lens being easily scratch I would have to say it held up great for what it went through. Hope to have many more videos in 2013
All of the information below is available at WestWebsterFD.org. Please rely on their site over FireCritic.com for the most up-to-date information. Feel free to let me know if you have questions, but there are emails below for contacts in West Webster.
Calling hours for both firefighters will be held at the Schroeder High School, 875 Ridge Road, Webster, New York. The calling hours Friday night, December 28th, willONLY be for members of the West Webster Fire Department, Webster Fire Department and Webster Police Officers. All others should plan on paying your respects at the calling hours Saturday December 29th which will be held from 12-3 PM & 6-9 PM at Schroeder High School.
Funeral services for Past Chief Chiapperini will be held Sunday 12 noon, December 30th at Schroeder High School, 875 Ridge Road, Webster. All participants are asked to park in the South (rear) parking lots of the school.
Funeral Services for Firefighter Tomasz Kaczowka will be held Monday, January 1stat 10:00 AM at the St. Stanislaus Church (Hudson Avenue and Norton Street). Parking will be very limited in the area of the church so we suggest you car pool as much as possible.
Fire apparatus for the procession to the respective cemeteries is limited to Webster PD, Webster and West Webster Fire personnel and apparatus.
Information about a reception after the funeral services will be forth coming.
This is a very dynamic time. As preparations are being made changes are to be expected. Please check back for additional information as any changes will be posted as we receive them.
Limited lodging is being made available at local fire stations for out of town fire departments who wish to attend the calling hours and/or the funeral services for Past Chief Mike Chiapperini and Firefighter Tomasz Kaczowka. Point of contact for firehouse lodging is Webster Chief Chris Smith who can be reached at 585-645-9886 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Previous coverage on the murders of two West Webster Firefighters on The Fire Critic here. The links and information below cover most of the coverage of the incident. For information on the killer who took his own life, you will find it in the links. I don’t feel the need to share it here.
Firefighters Michael Chiapperini and Tomasz Kaczówka were killed while arriving at a house fire in West Webster, NY yesterday. Firefighters Theodore Scardino and Joseph Hofstetter were also shot in the incident. Off-duty Greece police officer John Ritter, was also injured by shrapnel in the attacks.
Many of the videos related to the incident including audio from the scene is below in this article. I encourage all fire, police, and EMS personnel to take a listen to the chilling yet courageous audio from the scene. Dave Statter said it best when he dubbed it “Extreme Courage Under Fire”.
I will share the arrangements as they are available. Be sure to check out WestWebsterFD.org for official notifications from the department.
Michael Chiapperini and Tomacz Kaczówka
Lt. Michael Chiapperini, 43, had been named Firefighter of the Year just two weeks ago, and he led the fire department’s Explorer program for young people interested in becoming firefighters. He had recently taken vacation time to help recovery efforts after Hurricane Sandy, the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle reported. He also was the public information officer for the Webster Police Department. He is survived by his wife, two daughters and a son, who also worked with the fire department.
Tomasz Kaczówka, 19, was a 911 dispatcher for Monroe County. He also was a member of the Explorers group that Chiapperini advised, had worked at a fast-food restaurant and had been a member of the fire department for about a year. One of three brothers, he was studying at Monroe County Community College. On his Facebook page, he said he could speak Polish and German.
In addition to our Brothers who died, three men were injured in the attacks as well including two firefighters and an off-duty police officer.
Firefighters Theodore Scardino and Joseph Hofstetter (l-r)
The two wounded firefighters, Joseph Hofstetter and Theodore Scardino, were in guarded condition in the intensive care unit at Strong Memorial Hospital, authorities said. Both were awake and alert and are expected to recover.
Hofstetter, also a full-timer with the Rochester Fire Department, was hit once in the pelvis, and the bullet lodged in his spine, authorities said. Scardino was hit in the chest and knee.
Off-duty Greece police officer John Ritter, was also injured by shrapnel.
The horrific event s this Christmas Eve has taxed the members of the West Webster Fire Department and entire Monroe County fire service community. It is events like this that bring us closer together as a fire service community dedicated to the preservation of life and property. As our department begins the healing process we ask for the community’s indulgence and prayers. Your expressions of love, concern and well-being for the family members of our deceased brothers is gratefully acknowledged. As we move forward in the coming days we look to the community for strength and guidance to carry on our mission.
For anyone inquiring the West Webster Fire Department has not established any donation or fundraising for our lost loved ones and their families at this time. If in the future there is any information on these we will put it on the website.
Life has been busy the past week. I took 2/3 of the cyle off for Thanksgiving…It is nice to have seniority (although I am working Christmas day). I also took off from FireCritic.com and didn’t even fire up the computer for 3 days. Thanks to my new iphone I can do a lot mobile. It is refreshing after my droid x that hardly even worked anymore.
Here is a very short but sweet Best of the Rest!
First a note about the photo albums on FireCritic.com:
The photo albums on FireCritic.com have been a huge hit. To be included, all you have to do is send your pictures (and info if you want) to email@example.com. You can send any photos you would like relating to fire and/or EMS. Specifically, pictures of firefighter kids, license plates, crews, firehouses, rigs, helmets, random pics, custom kitchen tables, and holiday photos. I run the photo articles once I have enough pictures in the categories.
I would like to invite you all to check out our new FREE online training program and share with your crews. This program is very unique since we have 5 different states represented by the instructors that are presenting.
ACCESS ISSUES IS NOW LIVE at firetrainingtoolbox.com. Simply go to the homepage, click the MODULES link then Access Issues. It’s a large file so please be patient as it loads. Thank You!
Engine 802 & Tanker 804 at a chicken house fire on 11/24/12 took a county wide page and mutual aid from another county $800k loss. took 5hrs to contain it. Luckily no chickens were there at the time. Cause of fire was a pressure washer exploding. No injuries. This was in Hickory Valley in White County, TN. It took a county wide page of ten districts and mutual aid from Van Burean County for tanker support. Shared by Zach Brock.
Dave Statter is the one on the right. He said he wouldn't be caught dead in red!
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!
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