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Green Courtesy Lights for Nova Scotia Volunteer Firefighters

I would like to change the Highway Traffic Act of Nova Scotia. The Fire Service Association of Nova Scotia and The Fire Marshal Office of Nova Scotia are against the use of the Green Lights.

Here is a link to my web site about the Green Courtesy Lights

Please leave a comment, I would love to hear Firefighters comments about the use of Lights on Volunteer Firefighters Pov's.

If you would like to send an e-mail please do. miraroadvolfire@hotmail.com

Art

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My FD has been against red lights (what's allowed here) in POV's for many years. We regularly see motorist who are ignorant to the rules when approached by red lights and sirens on authorized emergency vehicles, never mind "courtesy lights". Having served in both an all volunteer FD that freely issued permits for POV lights, we routinely got complaints about fireman driving like idiots. Take out the red light and you have just another person driving like an idiot.

As courtesy lights do not allow any violation of the law, the only thing you gain is clearing traffic in front of you. This becomes very confusing to motorists at STOP signs and red lights. Do they go? Do they pull over? Do they even see you? It's far more clear when you have a siren and are legally "pushing" down the left side. How much time can be saved if you're merely travelling the posted speed limit?

I made a run as an off duty chief one day to a mutual aid tech rescue call. I ended up following the fire chief from the VFD we were assisting. He had a light bar but no siren, and the confusion was ridiculous, he finally pulled over and let me lead with fully audibles and lights to clear the traffic. He went out the next day and bought a siren as he said his choice was either remove the lights or buy the siren.

Sorry, but I can honestly say that courtesy lights have far more liabilities than benefits.
I was going to ad to this however I think Adam hit everything right on the head. Back when I used to volunteer I wouldn't run a light for exactly that reason. I would rather be thought of as an idiot driving fast than a part of the fire service. In my state technically the only purpose of the courtesy light is to allow you access to the fire scene other than that its just confusing and dangerous.
I don't want to agrue over this I just want to get comments back and forth so don't take anything I reply with the wrong way.

1) You said freely issued permits - What we are talking about is a Bylaw put in place and enforced by the city bylaw Enforement Officers and the Police not the Fire Department and Chief. The Permits would be given out by the Enforcement Officers after all requiered paper work is in place.

2) We routinely got complaints about fireman driving like idiots - Just wondering what was done to the idiots when they were seen driving like an idiot. Were the firefighters disciplined or let go to continue to drive the same way. If a firefighter will respond like and idiot in his/ her Pov then I wouldn't want them driving a fire truck to a call.

3) During my research it seems people in places such as Ontario Canada are not confused due to the public awareness campains they run each and every year. Then you said (the only thing you gain is clearing traffic in front of you) isn't that the idea of using the Light and by the sound of what you said it does clear the way. When they arrive at a stop light or signs the firefighters turn off the light so not to confuse the public and when they have the right of way and go throught the intersection they turn the light back on.

4) "pushing" down the left side - I have found during my research that most problems is when firefighter have a Light and Siren on their Pov causes 99% of the problems. As you said they are pushing down the left side of the road, they are demanding the right of way and not requesting it.

5) How much time can be saved if you're merely travelling the posted speed limit? - Well if cars move out of your way you would have to save time. If you do some research you will find that a Jewish group in Ontario use a green light to respond for medical assistant to the ambulance service and is one of the biggest things that have help save people. St. John Ambulance use the green lights in Ontario, the Command Post uses the Green lights in Ontario and the Volunteer firefighters use the green lightin Ontario. The letters I have from the Ontario Transportation Minister and the Fire Service is that they don't have the problems you speak about. Training and Rules in place are one of the biggest things they have said has stopped the problems others have had.

6) Sorry, but I can honestly say that courtesy lights have far more liabilities than benefits. - Just to let you know that here if you have lights ans siren on your Pov as our Chiefs and Deputy Chiefs do they are considered an emergency vehicle and ther insurance policy goes up. If you use a Courtesy Light your insurance stays the same because you are not considered an emergency vehicle.


Thanks for reply and I just want to hear all sides.

thanks
Art

Adam Miceli said:
My FD has been against red lights (what's allowed here) in POV's for many years. We regularly see motorist who are ignorant to the rules when approached by red lights and sirens on authorized emergency vehicles, never mind "courtesy lights". Having served in both an all volunteer FD that freely issued permits for POV lights, we routinely got complaints about fireman driving like idiots. Take out the red light and you have just another person driving like an idiot.

As courtesy lights do not allow any violation of the law, the only thing you gain is clearing traffic in front of you. This becomes very confusing to motorists at STOP signs and red lights. Do they go? Do they pull over? Do they even see you? It's far more clear when you have a siren and are legally "pushing" down the left side. How much time can be saved if you're merely travelling the posted speed limit?

I made a run as an off duty chief one day to a mutual aid tech rescue call. I ended up following the fire chief from the VFD we were assisting. He had a light bar but no siren, and the confusion was ridiculous, he finally pulled over and let me lead with fully audibles and lights to clear the traffic. He went out the next day and bought a siren as he said his choice was either remove the lights or buy the siren.

Sorry, but I can honestly say that courtesy lights have far more liabilities than benefits.
1) I would rather be thought of as an idiot driving fast than a part of the fire service. - I can't even understand someone in the fire service saying this. So what you just said here is that you are an unmarked car driving as fast as you want to a call because nobody knows who you are. Now when I replied to the last post I think I said if someone was driving like this I would want him/her driving a fire truck, this I am sorry to say is the perfect sample for what I said. wow

2) Just confusing and dangerous. - You should research this and you will find it is not like what you said.

You will always hear that 20 to 25% of firefighters die when responding or returning from calls. Now would it surprise you if I told you that there has never been a firefighter’s fatality caused due to the use of a light on a Pov? Just to let you know I do have the letter to back this statement up 100% by the Association in the United States that investigates all Firefighter Fatalities.

Thanks
Art


Shawn Tibbitts said:
I was going to ad to this however I think Adam hit everything right on the head. Back when I used to volunteer I wouldn't run a light for exactly that reason. I would rather be thought of as an idiot driving fast than a part of the fire service. In my state technically the only purpose of the courtesy light is to allow you access to the fire scene other than that its just confusing and dangerous.
Art,

I'm sorry my response did not align itself with your cause. My thoughts and feelings are based on my experience in 23 years of volunteer and career FD service. I won't argue with you as it's not an issue for me, but I'd like to point to the fact that while no accident has been "directly caused" by the red light I don't believe we really know the contributing factors. Far more firefighter fatal responding accidents here in the US are contributed to POV responses, I have yet to see a report detailing the use of the courtesy lights, but given their overall prevalence I'm willing to bet they're present in many cases. Do people drive differently when they use the lights? Yes, sorry rules be damned but we're all human and most people with a few years under their belt will admit the sins of their youth, including driving irrationally to fire calls.

Good luck and I hope it works out for you and your FD. Maybe with decent discipline, training and public education you can make this work, where many others have failed.
Art,

I have used a green courtesy light (Ontario), and in all honesty, I didn't really find it all that useful. I've also volunteered in Nova Scotia and found my response times to the station didn't really improve with the light. All the promotional campaigns that were done really didn't seem to educate the public like everyone hoped. People still don't move for you, light or no light. I can honestly say that I had more people ignore the light than I ever had pull over and let me pass.

It would be interesting to hear from some members of departments in urban areas who use these lights in an environment where there are traffic lights every block. In the town where I used a green light there were only three sets of traffic lights so the intersections weren't really an issue for us.

We did have issues with abuse of the light and agressive driving, but as you mentioned, these incidents should be dealt with, and in my opinion severely and swiftly! Keep in mind that it only takes one incident of aggressive driving to paint your whole department with the same brush. This can happen with or without a green light as you know.

Good luck with your quest...but if I was Chief, I'd probably find more beneficial things to spend my limited budget on than green lights. If you really want to improve safety and response times...train your apparatus operators on safe driving skills...that's a good investment for the department, membership, and community you protect!

Professionally,
Jeff
Thanks for the replies and I do consider everything people say when it comes to the use of the lights. I will upload some files for you to read and it will show you some of the research I have done. Keep replying because as I said you guys have very important input that can help when someone is looking at the use of the lights. I think you guys have some great issues and thanks.

As soon as I can I will add the files. Off to a strongmans tournament to help out and I will see if I can add the files tonight and I hope you reply to them.

Thanks again
Art
ok that sounded bad what I said on the one point. What I was referring to was if im going 50 in a 45 zone with a light going people assume im going 65, if im going 50 in a 45 with no light nobody's really going to pay attention. Studies have been done and in rural areas the amount of time saved running the lights isn't that great. The study wasnt specific to that actually, rather it was the benefit of going 5 to ten miles an hour faster compared to slowing down a little. Nobody can argue this next point, your driving down the road some idiot passes you(im not referring to fire here just a random vehicle) and behold you get to a stop sign and your right there behind them. I have come from both disciplines, I feel your frustration, I do believe the courtesy lights are vary important at the scene for safety, but in my opinion I believe they arnt worth the risk.However my old jurisdiction sounds different than yours with your public out reach on courtesy light. Around my neck of the woods people are ignorant to them. So well done on that point. Side note please excuse my punctuation and grammar on this, im one finger typing with a sleepy 1 year old in my arm :) About 8 years ago I attended a class at montour falls fire academy on legal issues that affect the fire service, the class was such an eye opener not only on povs but dept vehicles it changed my whole train of thought on driving period. Last point, My old vol dept has been keeping tabs on the guys in povs while running lights, when complaints come in lights are temporally suspend and second offense they are suspended from the dept for a spell. I truelly do wish you luck on this matter, and I hope it works out for you. Please remember the guys on this site arnt trying to break your chops, they are just offering advice not only technical but personel experience as well. What im trying to say is try not to take our opinions as an insult, were just trying to give insight and attempting to help.
Take care and be safe.
I would like to know more on you public out reach so I might be able to forward it to my old chief, if you dont mind.
thanks.
Here is another site for you guys to check out and let me know what you think either way.

Also sometimes when we type a reply it might sound a little diferent if we were talking face to face.

Here is the site Green Lights

Art

And thanks for your replies.
Hi Art
I agree with you on sometimes things arnt perceived the way we hope while posting apposed to face to face. I started doing a little research and started finding case after case of firefighters killed while responding in povs. You might not want to use that letter as "prof" you mentioned because its not accurate. I posted a few of the story's I found beneath hope this helps.
Stay safe


COLLINSVILLE, Miss. — In the early morning hours of Saturday, a call came in that there was an accident on West Lauderdale Road, and as he has done so many times in the more than 20 years as fire chief for the Collinsville Volunteer Fire Department, Clyde Walker said goodbye to his wife and headed in that direction.

But this time, Walker never made it to the scene. According to Lauderdale County Coroner Clayton Cobler, Walker's truck hydroplaned on Highway 19 and hit a tree, instantly killing the dedicated firefighter. It is a sad time for not only the fire department, but the entire Collinsville area. COLLINSVILLE, Miss. — In the early morning hours of Saturday, a call came in that there was an accident on West Lauderdale Road, and as he has done so many times in the more than 20 years as fire chief for the Collinsville Volunteer Fire Department, Clyde Walker said goodbye to his wife and headed in that direction.

REIDSVILLE, N.C. — A volunteer firefighter responding to a house fire was killed when his truck veered off a road and crashed in Reidsville.

The state Highway Patrol said 36-year-old Paul Ellington of Eden was traveling at a high rate of speed when his truck hit a stop sign Tuesday morning. The truck then crossed U.S. 29, rolled and crashed into several trees.

The Highway Patrol said Ellington was not wearing his seat belt.

Ellington was a 17-year veteran of the Oregon Hill Volunteer Fire Department. He was named the department's firefighter of the year in 2003.

ROWAN COUNTY, N.C. — Cold Water volunteer firefighter James Earl Arthur loved responding to emergencies.

The 19-year-old Concord High graduate had joined the fire department as soon as he turned 16 and was old enough.

On Monday night, his rush to get to a call cost him his life.

Around 7:20 p.m., Arthur was on his way home from his job at a textile mill in southern Rowan County when he heard his department paged to respond to a vehicle wreck, according to colleagues at the fire department.

He was heading north on Old Concord Road when he took a curve too fast about 3 miles south of China Grove, said N.C. Highway Patrol Trooper C.F. Rogers. He lost control of his pickup, overturned and was thrown from the truck. He wasn't wearing a seatbelt.

Rogers estimated that Arthur was going at least 75 miles per hour. The speed limit is 55, and a sign recommends 40 for the curve. Cold Water Fire Chief James Preddy Jr. said police give volunteer firefighters leeway when they turn their emergency lights on, but they're not allowed to speed.
MISSOULA, Mont. — A volunteer firefighter is dead after a tractor trailer crashed into his vehicle while he was responding to a wreck on Interstate 90 near Haugan.AMITY, Ark. — An Ark. volunteer was killed in the line of duty in his personal vehicle Thursday, according to the U.S. Fire Administration.

Tony McGough, 44, of the Amity Fire Department was responding to a medical call early Thursday morning when he was involved in a motor vehicle accident. McGough died of the injuries he sustained.AMITY, Ark. — An Ark. volunteer was killed in the line of duty in his personal vehicle Thursday, according to the U.S. Fire Administration.


LUMBERTON, N.C. — An 18-year-old volunteer firefighter was killed today when he lost control of his car on Deep Branch Road as he was answering a fire call.

Matthew Douglas Tramel, of 1617 Red Banks Road in Pembroke, died after his eastbound 2007 Nissan ran off the road and hit a tree at about 12:53 a.m., according to a report filed by Highway Patrol Trooper Alan Humphrey.

Tramel, a senior at Purnell Swett High School, had been with the Pembroke Fire Department for two months.


FAYETTEVILLE, Pa. — Pennsylvania State Police in Gettysburg, Pa., were investigating a vehicle accident Thursday night in which a firefighter en route to a mountain fire in Greene Township in Franklin County was killed.

Adam Cole, 24, of Biglerville, Pa., was pronounced dead at Gettysburg (Pa.) Hospital following the 8 p.m. accident on Buchanan Valley Road. Buchanan Valley Fire Co. Deputy Chief John Parr said Thursday evening that one of the company’s firefighters had been killed in an accident.

Police said Cole was driving a 2005 Subaru Impreza west on Buchanan Valley Road when he lost control on a curve. The Impreza crossed into the eastbound lane and collided with a 1997 Chevrolet 1500 pickup truck driven by Charles Amick, 66, of Roaring Spring, Pa.


OLIVET, Mich. — A volunteer firefighter with the Olivet Fire Department was killed shortly before 8 p.m. Tuesday when his car struck a large tree that had fallen onto a roadway.

The Eaton County Sheriff's Department said John Lietzke, 47, of Olivet, was traveling on Stine Road south of Five Point Highway responding to a fire run when the accident occurred. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Deputies said Lietzke was the lone occupant of the vehicle and was wearing a seatbelt.

The Times-Reporter

MARTINSVILLE, Ohio — Jared W. Zimmerly, 20, son of Holmes County Sheriff Timothy W. Zimmerly, died Sunday morning after his car hit a pole and a tree and overturned in Holmes County while he was responding to an emergency call in Millersburg as a Prairie Township volunteer firefighter.

Zimmerly of County Rd. 189, Millersburg, was driving west on County Rd. 189 in Salt Creek Township, northeast of Millersburg, when he lost control of his car on a curve, according to the Wooster post of the Ohio Highway Patrol.

The car hit a pole and a tree and overturned. Zimmerly, who was not wearing his seat belt, was ejected.

WAGENER, S.C. — A volunteer firefighter was killed while trying to save someone else in Aiken County, according to officials.

The county coroner says 36-year-old Jeffrey Swartz was responding to a respiratory distress call on Camp Rawls Road in Wagener when he lost control of his SUV.

Officials say the vehicle then hit another car, flipped over and burst into flames.

COAL CITY, Ind. — A volunteer firefighter died in a car crash Monday while on her way to the department's station for a fire call, the state fire marshal said.

The firefighter was identified as Dennise M. Leslie, 37, of Freedom.

She was going to get an engine from the Coal City Fire Department to respond to a brush fire when she was killed in a single-car accident about 5 p.m., Fire Marshal Roger Johnson said.

Leslie lost control of her pickup truck as she swerved to avoid a collision with an oncoming vehicle, the Owen County Sheriff's Office said in a news release. Her truck rolled and struck a tree.

ROSHE HILL, Kan. — A volunteer with the Rose Hill Fire Department was killed late Friday when he lost control of his pickup truck while speeding to the scene of a house fire.

The Kansas Highway Patrol said Brandon Daley, 19, was thrown from his pickup after he lost control of the vehicle on Butler Road about 2 ½ miles north of Rose Hill.

Canadian fire fighter killed en route to call

Duty Death: Shawn Thomas MacLeod - [Nova Scotia]

Biographical Info

Age: 31

Cause of Death: FF Shawn Thomas MacLeod, 31, died two days before Christmas responding to his firehouse to pick up the apparatus so he could respond to a fire call. He was trying to pass another vehicle when his car struck a guard wire and rolled over several times, ejecting him. He died in hospital, leaving behind a wife and three sons, one just three weeks old. FF Mac-Leod, who was with the East River Valley FD for 15 years, was following the footsteps of his father, former Fire Chief Bert MacLeod.

"She's doing not too bad," Chief Adams said of MacLeod's widow, "but (the father, the former chief) is taking it the worst. It's his boy."

According to reports, the FF was driving fast and not wearing his seatbelt. The fire MacLeod was responding to was under control but the department was not notified and firefighters continued to respond.
I went over the fatalities to and this is what I found.

In 2000, nineteen firefighters died while responding to incidents and seven died while returning from incidents.
Below are the Firefighters that died responding or returning in their (POV) Personal Owen Vehicle.

July 2, 2000 Nathan Andrew Pescatore, Firefighter Age 17, Volunteer Lloydsville Fire Department and Relief Association, Pennsylvania.
REFERENCE: FA 215, 8/2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2000 Report, Page A-28.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2000.pdf
Firefighter Pescatore was responding as the sole occupant and driver of his personal vehicle to a report of a structure fire. He crossed the centerline of the road as he entered a curve in the road. As he rounded the curve, he came upon a farm tractor approaching from the opposite direction. Firefighter Pescatore’s view of the tractor as he drove into the curve was blocked by vegetation.
Fire Pescatore was unable to get back into his lane and struck the farm tractor head on. The loader bucket on the front of the tractor was driven through both drivers’ side roof posts and severely injured Firefighter Pescatore. Firefighters responding on mutual aid to the structure fire were diverted to the collision and were joined by Lyodsville Firefighters at the scene. After Firefighter Pescatore was extricated, he was flown by helicopter to the hospital.
Firefighter Pescatore was pronounced dead at the hospital due to blunt force trauma to the head.

September 1, 2000 Albert Leonel Voris, Jr., Lieutenant Age 63, Volunteer Combine Volunteer Fire Department, Texas
REFERENCE: FA 215, 8/2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2000 Report, Page A-38. http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2000.pdf
Lieutenant Voris was responding to the fire station as the driver and sole occupant of his personal vehicle after his department was dispatched to the report of a vehicle fire. An oncoming vehicle crossed the centerline of the roadway and struck Lieutenant Voris’s vehicle head on.
Firefighters at the scene of the car fire responded for the vehicle accident upon their arrival found Lieutenant Voris entrapped. Lieutenant Voris was pronounced dead at the scene prior to the completion of the extrication. The driver of the other vehicle received minor injuries.
Lieutenant Voris was wearing his seat belt at the time of the collision. The cause of death for Lieutenant Voris was listed as multiple blunt force trauma. The cause of the car fire was listed as suspicious.


September 17, 2000 Robert Wilson Humphrey, Firefighter Age 62, Volunteer Maryland Line Volunteer Fire Company, Maryland
REFERENCE: FA 215, 8/2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2000 Report, Page A-41.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2000.pdf
Firefighter Humphrey to the scene of a motor vehicle collision in his personal vehicle. He parked his car on the right shoulder of the highway and began to cross the road to assist a battalion chief who had already arrived on scene. As Firefighter Humphrey crossed, a midsized sedan struck him. Firefighters arriving in response to the original incident assisted with the treatment of the original accident victim and Firefighter Humphrey.
Firefighter Humphrey and the victim to the original accident were transported to the hospital by helicopter. Firefighter Humphrey died later that day in surgery. The cause of death was listed as a result of multiple trauma.

November 17, 2000 Thomas J. Hazaz, Fire Police Lieutenant age 69, Volunteer TunkTownship Volunteer Fire Company, Pennsylvania
REFERENCE: FA 215, 8/2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2000 Report, Page A-50.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2000.pdf
Fire Police Lieutenant Hazaz responded to the scene of a motor vehicle accident with members of his department. When he arrived on the scene in his personal vehicle, Fire Police Lieutenant Hazaz received orders from the fire chief by radio. As he passed the scene enroute to his assignment, he waived the fire chief over to his pickup. The chief opened the door of the pickup and repeated hid orders. Fire Police Lieutenant Hazaz waved to acknowledge the order and placed his hands on the wheel. The chief closed the pickup’s door and noted that the vehicle did not move. The chief opened the door and discovered that Fire Police Lieutenant Hazaz was suffering a heart attack.
Firefighters removed Fire Police Lieutenant Hazaz from his pickup, CPR was started, and an ambulance was called. The ambulance that was on scene for the initial accident had departed for the hospital. Despite efforts on the scene and on the way to the hospital, Fire Police Lieutenant Hazaz was pronounced dead at the hospital. The cause of death was listed as atherosclerotic cardio vascular disease. Fire Police Lieutenant Hazaz’s death came on the eighth anniversary of his appointment to the fire department.


November 26, 2000 Daniel I. King, Firefighter Age 21, Volunteer Cliffside Park Fire Department, New Jersey
REFERENCE: FA 215, 8/2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2000 Report, Page A-51.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2000.pdf
Firefighter King was responding to an automatic fire alarm in his personal vehicle. He was not displaying emergency or courtesy lights, but he was flashing his headlights and honking his horn. As he responded, a vehicle emerged from the side street on his right. Firefighter King swerved into the oncoming lane to avoid the collision, his vehicle began to fishtail, and he hit a transit bus head-on.
Firefighters responded to the scene and extricated Firefighter King from his vehicle. Firefighter King was wearing a seat belt but the force of the crash was too great. He died later that day. The cause of death was listed as internal trauma.



Review of Firefighters responding in the year 2000 in their Pov.
July 2, 2000 Nathan Andrew Pescatore, Firefighter Age 17, Volunteer Lloydsville Fire Department and Relief Association, Pennsylvania.
He crossed the centerline and hit a farm tractor head on.

September 1, 2000 Albert Leonel Voris, Jr., Lieutenant Age 63, Volunteer Combine Volunteer Fire Department, Texas
An oncoming vehicle crossed the centerline of the roadway and struck Lieutenant Voris’s vehicle head on.

September 17, 2000 Robert Wilson Humphrey, Firefighter Age 62, Volunteer Maryland Line Volunteer Fire Company, Maryland
He parked his car on the right shoulder of the highway and began to cross the road to assist a battalion chief who had already arrived on scene. As Firefighter Humphrey crossed, a midsized sedan struck him.

November 17, 2000 Thomas J. Hazaz, Fire Police Lieutenant age 69, Volunteer Tunk Township Volunteer Fire Company, Pennsylvania
When he arrived on scene in his personal vehicle. He was on the side of the road and took a heart attack.

November 26, 2000 Daniel I. King, Firefighter Age 21, Volunteer Cliffside Park Fire Department, New Jersey
He was not displaying emergency or courtesy lights, but he was flashing his headlights and honking his horn. As he responded, a vehicle emerged from the side street on his right. Firefighter King swerved into the oncoming lane to avoid the collision, his vehicle began to fishtail, and he hit a transit bus head-on.

1 Crossed the center line
1 A oncoming vehicle crossed the center
1 A vehicle came on his side of the road and the firefighter swerved
1 When parked on the side of the road took a heart attack
1 After arriving on scene with his Pov got out and was crossing a highway on foot


Twenty-three firefighters died while responding to or returning from emergency incidents in 2001:
Below are the Firefighters that died responding or returning in their (POV) Personal Owen Vehicle.

April 8, 2001 - 3:00 a.m. Brian Steven Richter, Firefighter Age 34, Volunteer, Pottsville Volunteer Fire Department, Arkansas
REFERENCE: 2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2001 Report, Page 70.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2001.pdf
Firefighter Richter was responding in his personal vehicle to a report of a structure fire. His vehicle left the right side of the road, traveled 116 feet on the right shoulder, and rolled over as Firefighter Richter attempted to return the vehicle to the roadway. Firefighter Richter was ejected through the vehicle's moon roof. Firefighter Richter died of massive skull fractures.

April 9, 2001 - 8:14 p.m. Richard C. Canouse, Firefighter/Fire Police Officer Age 69,Volunteer Milford Fire Department, Pennsylvania
REFERENCE: 2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2001 Report, Page 71.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2001.pdf
Fire Police Officer Canouse and members of his department responded to a report of a structural fire with reports of fire from the roof of a building. Upon their arrival, firefighters found no active fire but discovered that lightning had struck a tree behind the building in which the fire was reported. Firefighters theorized that the report of fire had actually been the lightning strike. All fire department units were placed in-service and cleared to return to their station.
Fire Police Officer Canouse was discovered unconscious in the driver's seat of his personal vehicle. He was removed from the vehicle and CPR was started by police officers. EMS crews arrived and attached an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED). No shockable rhythm was detected. Fire Police Officer Canouse was transported by ambulance to a local hospital while CPR was continued during the transport. Despite all efforts, Fire Police Officer Canouse was pronounced dead at the hospital.

June 24, 2001 - 6:00 p.m. Jack Hamilton Fowler, Jr., Fire Chief Age 46, Career Pueblo West Fire Department, Colorado
REFERENCE: 2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2001 Report, Page 79.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2001.pdf
Chief Fowler was returning to the fire station after the completion of response team training. He was driving his personal motorcycle and was involved in a collision with a car. He sustained critical injuries and was pronounced dead at a local hospital upon his arrival.




July 16, 2001 - 2:02 p.m. Eddie Dean Mathis, Lieutenant Age 45, Volunteer Dallas Volunteer Fire Department, North Carolina
REFERENCE: 2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2001 Report, Page 82.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2001.pdf
Lieutenant Mathis was responding to a car/pedestrian incident from his place of work in a near-by community. As Lieutenant Mathis rounded a left-hand curve, a vehicle traveling in the opposite direction crossed the center line and impacted the motorcycle operated by Lieutenant Mathis.
The motorcycle left the roadway, and Lieutenant Mathis was thrown over 16 feet past the final resting place of the motorcycle. The crash was reported and local emergency personnel responded. When EMS and fire department personnel arrived, Lieutenant Mathis was alert and oriented. His left leg had been amputated below the knee. His condition was serious, so he was transported to the hospital by medical helicopter.
During transport to the hospital, Lieutenant Mathis' condition worsened. Vital signs were lost during the flight, and he was pronounced dead shortly after his arrival at the hospital.
Lieutenant Mathis was wearing a helmet at the time of the collision. The cause of death was listed as multiple blunt trauma.

July 22, 2001 -5:00 a.m. Donald Dean Myrick, Firefighter Age 49, Volunteer Ludlow Fire Protection District, Illinois
REFERENCE: 2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2001 Report, Page 83.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2001.pdf
Firefighter Myrick was responding from his residence to a report of a vehicle crash requiring extrication.
As he responded, the right wheels of Firefighter Myrick's personal vehicle left the roadway. Firefighter Myrick over steered to the left and the vehicle began to slide. The vehicle turned on to its left side and slid off the road. After leaving the road, the vehicle rolled onto its top.
Firefighter Myrick was not wearing a seat belt. At some point during the crash, Firefighter Myrick's head was crushed between the road and the door frame. The crash was not discovered until morning. Firefighter Myrick was pronounced dead at the scene.

August 10, 2001 - 10:15 a.m. James Monroe Pelton, Fire Chief Age 58, Career Mason Fire Department, Michigan
REFERENCE: 2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2001 Report, Page 85.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2001.pdf
Chief Pelton was traveling to a meeting in his personal vehicle. The use of his personal vehicle and his attendance at the meeting were approved in advance by his department.
The driver of a compact car ran a stop sign on a road that intersected with the road that Chief Pelton was traveling. The compact car impacted a Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV) that was traveling toward Chief Pelton's vehicle. The SUV went airborne and landed on top of Chief Pelton's pick-up. Chief Pelton was killed instantly.

After the collision, the SUV rolled off Chief Pelton's vehicle and impacted another car. Chief Pelton's pickup continued through the intersection, left the roadway, and impacted a house.
The driver of the compact car was charged with negligent homicide.

September 16, 2001 - Time Unknown Willie Barns, Fire Police Lieutenant Age 66, Volunteer Country Lakes Fire Company #1, New Jersey
REFERENCE: 2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2001 Report, Page 92.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2001.pdf
Fire Police Lieutenant Barns was responding to perform traffic control duties near the scene of an electrical transformer fire. Lieutenant Barns was driving his personal vehicle.
At some point during the response, Lieutenant Barns became ill and pulled to the side of the road. Firefighters returning from the original incident saw his car on the side of the road and, thinking that he was having mechanical difficulties, discovered him slumped over the wheel.
Firefighters provided medical care, and Lieutenant Barns was transported to the hospital where he was later pronounced dead of a heart attack.

September 25, 2001 - 1:00 a.m. Clarence Kreitzer, Firefighter Age 78, Volunteer Bowie Volunteer Fire Department, Company 19, Maryland
REFERENCE: 2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2001 Report, Page 92.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2001.pdf
A tornado struck the campus of the University of Maryland at College Park. The tornado destroyed several buildings being used as the temporary home of the Maryland Fire & Rescue Institute (MFRI).
The Bowie Volunteer Fire Department was called out to, among other things, provide incident scene lighting for the recovery activities. Firefighter Kreitzer operated a specialized floodlight unit on-scene. Once clear of the scene, Firefighter Kreitzer returned to the fire station, told others that he was not feeling well, and headed home.
A short distance from the fire station, Firefighter Kreitzer experienced a heart attack. His car left the road and struck a guard rail. Firefighters in the station were alerted by a passerby and ran to the scene. Firefighter Kreitzer was rushed back to the fire station, and emergency medical care was provided. Unfortunately, Firefighter Kreitzer did not recover.
The tornado also killed the two college-age daughters of past Fire Chief and MFRI Assistant Director F. Patrick Marlatt. Chief Marlatt was trapped in the debris of the MFRI buildings and had to be extricated. His daughters had just left his office; their car was thrown 600-900 feet.

October 24, 2001 - 9:30 p.m. Michael Gene Elliott, Firefighter Age 46,Volunteer Maple Rapids Fire Department, Michigan
REFERENCE: 2001 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2001 Report, Page 95.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2001.pdf
Firefighter Elliott and members of his department were paged to respond to their station due to severe weather in the area. In accordance with department standard operating procedures, Firefighter Elliott was en route to pick up his daughter to ensure her safety prior to reporting to the fire station.
As he drove down a local road, a tree fell onto the cab of Firefighter Elliott's vehicle and crushed him. Local residents and rescuers used chain saws to remove the tree. Firefighter Elliott was most likely killed immediately.


Thirteen firefighters died while responding to or returning from emergency incidents in 2002:
Below are the Firefighters that died responding or returning in their (POV) Personal Owen Vehicle.


U.S. Fire Administration Firefighter Fatalities in the United States in 2007
January 21, 2002 - 1100hrs Dustin Michael "Dusty" Schwendeman, Firefighter Age 26, Volunteer Dunham Township Volunteer Fire Department, Ohio
REFERENCE: 2002 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2002 Report, Page 57.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2002.pdf
Firefighter Schwendeman was responding in his personal vehicle to the fire station after his department was dispatched to a mutual-aid structure fire. Road conditions were wet with patches of ice.
As Firefighter Schwendeman responded on a downgrade, his vehicle hit a patch of ice and began to slide. Firefighter Schwendeman's Tahoe left the roadway to the right, struck a mailbox, struck an embankment, rolled three times, and landed back on its wheels. Firefighter Schwendeman was ejected through the vehicle's sunroof during one of the rollovers and suffered a severe head injury.
Firefighters from a neighboring department were dispatched to the crash. Firefighter Schwendeman was treated at the scene and transported to a local hospital. He was later transported by helicopter to a regional care facility. He died the following morning.
The cause of death was listed as a laceration of the brain and blunt trauma injuries. Firefighter Schwendeman was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash. The police report on the incident cited excessive speed as a contributing factor in the crash.

March 16, 2002 - 0230hrs Clarence Francis Birchmore, Fire Chief Age 60, Volunteer Whiting Volunteer Fire Department, Vermont
REFERENCE: 2002 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2002 Report, Page 64.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2002.pdf
Chief Birchmore was responding in his personal vehicle to the report of a vehicle crash. About 100 yards from the scene, he suffered a heart attack. A Vermont State Trooper and an ambulance, who were also responding to the original incident, witnessed his vehicle pull off the road and stopped to help.
CPR was begun immediately and Chief Birchmore was transported to the hospital. He was pronounced dead after all efforts failed to bring him back.


March 20, 2002 - 1459hrs Adam Lee Weisenberger, Private Age 19, Volunteer Gluckstadt Volunteer Fire Department, Mississippi
REFERENCE: 2002 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2002 Report, Page 65.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2002.pdf
Firefighter Weisenberger and members of his department were dispatched to a two-car crash with injuries on a local interstate highway. At the time of the dispatch, the area was experiencing heavy rain and thunderstorms. Firefighter Weisenberger was the first firefighter on the scene when he arrived in his personal vehicle.
Firefighter Weisenberger observed that two cars were involved and put on medical examination gloves. As he was talking with one of the victims, a passing vehicle collided with the vehicle occupied by the victim. The victim's vehicle, pushed by the secondary collision, knocked Firefighter Weisenberger into the traffic lane where he was run over by a passing truck. Witnesses said that Firefighter Weisenberger tried to dodge the approaching car but was unsuccessful.
Firefighter Weisenberger was thrown over 75 feet and came to rest in the median. Arriving firefighters provided treatment to Firefighter Weisenberger, and he was transported to the hospital. He was later pronounced dead at the hospital. The cause of death was listed as craniocerebral trauma.
Firefighter Weisenberger's father is the emergency management director for Madison County, Mississippi.

April 1, 2002 - 1850hrs Jackie Eli Ellington, Jr., Firefighter Age 19, Paid-on-Call Newcastle Fire Department, Oklahoma
REFERENCE: 2002 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2002 Report, Page 66 & 67.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2002.pdf
The Newcastle Fire Department is a combination fire department. Career and paid-on-call firefighters staff the fire station with the presence of the paid-on-call firefighters required from 1900 until 2200. Firefighter Ellington was not scheduled to work the night of April 1, 2002. Additional staffing was needed at the fire station, so Firefighter Ellington was paged to report for duty.
Firefighter Ellington was responding to the fire station in his personal vehicle when he was involved in a crash. As Firefighter Ellington's vehicle reached the crest of a hill, a vehicle traveling in the opposite direction crossed the center line and struck Firefighter Ellington's vehicle.
The Newcastle Fire Department was dispatched to the scene. The fire chief was first on the scene and found that the driver of the other vehicle was killed, a passenger in the other vehicle was injured, and that Firefighter Ellington was killed also.
Firefighter Ellington was wearing his seatbelt but was partially ejected from his vehicle. The cause of death was listed as multiple trauma.







May 14, 2002 - 1700hrs Jeremy Brown, Firefighter Age 27, Volunteer Screven County Fire Department, Georgia
REFERENCE: 2002 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2002 Report, Page 73.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2002.pdf
Firefighter Brown was responding in his personal vehicle to a fire involving a log skidder. He was struck with a heart attack; his vehicle left the roadway, and it crashed into a forested area. He suffered from a congenital heart disease that had given him problems throughout his life.
Firefighter Brown had been scheduled to undergo heart surgery in June.

June 8, 2002 - 1318hrs Shane Matthew Kelly, Firefighter/EMT Age 26, Career Oviedo Fire-Rescue, Florida
REFERENCE: 2002 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2002 Report, Page 74 & 75.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2002.pdf
Firefighter Kelly was off duty and traveling with his wife on a highway in their personally owned vehicle. A heavy rain was falling. As they drove, they came upon the scene of a crash; a vehicle was on its top in the median. Firefighter Kelly exited his vehicle and began to provide medical care to the victims of the crash, according to medical protocol. This incident occurred outside the area protected by Oviedo Fire-Rescue.
At least six people, including a medical doctor, stopped to provide assistance. As treatment was being provided, a tractor-trailer was unable to stop for backed-up traffic and drove through the median area. Everyone in the median area was either struck by the truck or the secondary impact between the truck and the car that had been involved in the original crash. As firefighters and EMS workers began to arrive in response to the initial crash, Firefighter Kelly was found in a prone position in the median. He was not breathing and had no pulse.
From the moment he stopped to assist at the crash scene, Firefighter Kelly was considered to be on duty by his department. The fire department responsible for the area where the crashes occurred requested that members of Oviedo Fire-Rescue respond to the scene.
The cause of death was listed as multiple blunt trauma injuries. The medical doctor who stopped to help was also killed. The driver of the tractor-trailer was charged with two counts of vehicular manslaughter and other charges.

June 30, 2002 - 1813hrs Richard Alan Cusson, Firefighter Trainee Age 30, Volunteer South Killingly Fire Department, Connecticut
REFERENCE: 2002 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2002 Report, Page 78.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2002.pdf
Members of Firefighter Cusson's fire department were on the scene of a mutual-aid fire in a lumber yard. Firefighter Cusson arrived on the scene and told the fire chief that he had not been wearing his pager and that he missed the dispatch. The fire chief directed him to return to the fire station to retrieve his protective clothing and then return to the scene.
Firefighter Cusson was driving his personal vehicle, a 1996 Ford Ranger pickup.
As he drove to the fire station, Firefighter Cusson passed a vehicle that had yielded for his blue light. He then entered a left-hand curve, and his vehicle left the roadway and went onto the right shoulder. Firefighter Cusson steered the vehicle back off the shoulder but was unable to maintain control. Firefighter Cusson's vehicle left the right side of the road and impacted a utility pole and a large-diameter tree. Firefighter Cusson, who was not wearing a seatbelt, was partially ejected from his vehicle.
The fire chief was notified of the crash and instructed the dispatch center to send a mutual-aid fire department to the scene. The fire chief also responded and found Firefighter Cusson dead at the scene.
The police incident report related to this crash estimated Firefighter Cusson's speed to be in excess of 77 miles per hour in a 40 mile per hour zone. The cause of death was listed as blunt trauma of the chest.
Firefighter Cusson's father is the Captain of the Fire Police for the South Killingly Fire Department and his brother is an Assistant Chief.

October 1, 2002 - 2029hrs George F. "Bat" Batelli, Sr., Firefighter Age 55, Volunteer Garfield Fire Company #1, New Jersey
REFERENCE: 2002 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2002 Report, Page 91.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2002.pdf
The Garfield Fire Company #1 was dispatched to a mutual-aid structure fire. Firefighter Batelli and another firefighter followed a responding engine company in Firefighter Batelli's personal vehicle. Firefighter Batelli was driving.
As they responded, Firefighter Batelli told his passenger that he did not feel well and lost consciousness. The firefighter who was the passenger in Firefighter Batelli's vehicle, reached over and put the vehicle in "park" and then guided the vehicle to the curb as it slowed. After the vehicle stopped, the firefighter went into a nearby business and called 9-1-1 for assistance.
Arriving police and EMS personnel started CPR, and Firefighter Batelli was transported to the hospital. He was pronounced dead at 2111. He was the victim of an apparent heart attack.

December 12, 2002 - 1432hrs Jonathan Myron Lanphear, Firefighter Age 23, Volunteer Boyd Volunteer Fire Department, Minnesota
REFERENCE: 2002 Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2002 Report, Page 97.
http://www.everyonegoeshome.com/resources/fatality/2002.pdf
Firefighter Lanphear was in the process of getting a haircut when his pager activated. He and the other members of his department were dispatched to a trash fire. Firefighter Lanphear began his response to the incident in his personal vehicle, a 1999 Grand Am.
Firefighter Lanphear approached an intersection that was controlled by a stop sign at a speed too great to stop. Although he attempted to stop prior to the stop sign, his vehicle began to skid. Firefighter Lanphear's vehicle overran the intersecting road, turned sideways to the left, and descended a steep embankment. The passenger side wheels of the vehicle were knocked off, the vehicle rolled twice, and the vehicle ended up on its roof.
Firefighter Lanphear, who was not wearing a seatbelt, was partially ejected through the sunroof and pinned underneath the vehicle. Arriving rescue personnel pronounced Firefighter Lanphear dead at the scene. Extrication was later completed.
The cause of death was listed as head trauma.

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