I read something the other day about a firefighter suicide that got under my skin. It said, "we need to do something, because what we are doing is not working."
While we will never be able to prevent or stop all suicides, we are making a difference.
Sadly, it's a difference that we will rarely quantify because sometimes, we rarely know the difference we make in the lives of others.
I know I have been in dark places, and all it took was a smile…Continue
Added by Dena Ali on June 2, 2019 at 7:45pm — No Comments
A mentor once told me “Good things are hard but hard things are great.” It always stuck with me, sadly though he passed away before I could put his great mentorship and guidance to use. I often think of him in a lot of my daily interactions and regret losing touch as my career took me on a new path. I share this because I feel his message warrants a larger stage, so with that I’ll keep this as short and to the point as I can.
When you’ve failed a test, missed out on a career,…Continue
Added by Dave McGlynn on May 26, 2019 at 6:00pm — No Comments
In 2017 103 firefighters committed suicide. That is 103 families torn apart with very few answers hoping to turn back time just enough to have an impact on these tired souls that made the decision to end their life on their own terms. First responders are five times more likely to suffer from depression and PTSD compared to the general population. The International Association of Firefighters (IAFF) takes these numbers extremely seriously and has begun implementing phenomenal resources to…Continue
Added by Ben Dubin on May 23, 2019 at 6:47pm — No Comments
Where has the passion gone? In my personal experience with life in general, we have become a self-centered population. Everything is about “me” and the fire service has seemingly become no different, many places are putting “we” first instead of “them”. It is true that many people just don’t seem to have the desire or the passion for the job that at one time they did, some never had it at all. This job will take a lot from you... and, yes, there will be times that it will take everything you…Continue
Added by Andrew Hieronimus on May 23, 2019 at 3:02pm — No Comments
The popular HBO series, Game of Thrones, provides a fun parody on the vicious firehouse backstabbing and culture of relentlessly second guessing the decisions made by others. It all seems so easy, until you're sitting on the Throne of Command.
STAY FIRED UP, and look outside of your own perspective before criticizing…
Added by Paul Combs on May 23, 2019 at 7:38am — No Comments
Culture, does it mean something to your organization or is it just a soft buzzword that gets thrown around at staff meetings and in emails? My point behind the post was simply this, many organizations seeking change for the better should stop and examine the culture within.
It should be no big secret to anyone reading…Continue
Added by George McNeil on May 21, 2019 at 5:56pm — No Comments
Firеfighting iѕ оnе оf thе wоrld’ѕ greatest occupations, yet, аbоut one of thе mоѕt dаngеrоuѕ and ѕtrеѕѕful job in thе wоrld. Eасh day аnd night, we рlасе ourѕеlvеѕ in harm’s way to come to the rеѕсuе of those whо are mostly in lifе-thrеаtеning diѕаѕtеrѕ. First rеѕроndеrѕ ѕuсh аѕ firеfightеrѕ are еxроѕеd tо trаumа as a nаturаl and unаvоidаblе раrt оf our dаilу routine.
Added by Mark W Lamplugh Jr on May 21, 2019 at 9:09am — No Comments
One of the issues facing fire service leadership is when to call an experienced attorney to assist the department in mitigating a problematic legal issue in their department. Every fire department chief has interacted with an attorney on a routine rather than emergent legal issues facing the department. Those range from labor contracts, policy creation, purchasing fire apparatus or firefighter safety gear, acquiring property and building new station to working on complex legal issues of…Continue
Added by John K. Murphy on May 19, 2019 at 4:00pm — No Comments
My apologies to any of my readers who are not comic book geeks like me, and may not understand this cartoon's Avengers Infinity War/Endgame reference. But to those who are, you understand the magnitude of the "snap." In this case, using the bad leadership traits (stones) for ill-will or for your own twisted sense of reality.
It only takes one…
Added by Paul Combs on May 17, 2019 at 2:10pm — No Comments
I recently viewed a video of a warehouse fire that reminded me of how frequently I see fire departments applying residential structure fire tactics to warehouse size fires. I often wonder what the root cause of operating this way is. Is it due to a lack of knowledge, improper training, lack of preplanning and underestimating the resources required, department culture, complacency, habitual operations of doing the same thing for every fire call, or simply a…Continue
Added by Nick J. Salameh on May 16, 2019 at 2:27pm — No Comments
Ten years! This month marks ten years of being published in…
Added by Paul Combs on May 15, 2019 at 1:19pm — No Comments
Chief Halton stated in his FDIC 2019 keynote what many of us have said before- ”Firefighting is the best damn job we’ve ever had.” He is 100% correct. This is the best job there is, and I can think of nothing that I’d rather be doing. Although, being a cowboy on a ranch in Colorado or Wyoming with a view of the Rockies wouldn’t be bad either!
But let’s be honest. Sometimes the best job gets you down because of the toxic environment that you find yourself in. People, politics,…Continue
Added by John Lightly on May 13, 2019 at 7:55am — No Comments
Dealing with cowardice from the cheap seats
I was standing in the parking lot of our training center shooting the breeze with a few guys when one of them said, "Hey man, you've got to see this!" He whips out his cell phone, dials up Youtube, and proceeds to show me a video of two firefighters over zealously practicing a push of a 1.75" line in a parking lot. I quickly recognize the tone of the video is more satire than instructional, basically knocking the Nozzle Forward program. In…Continue
Added by Benjamin Martin on May 7, 2019 at 5:38pm — No Comments
Journal Entry #52
Dear brothers and sisters,
I missed you all at FDIC this year (home with a temporary medical issue) while Fire Engineering rolled out my new book. I’ve heard from many of you regarding same, seeking information. I’m very proud of this project and wish you a healthy career and safe operations always!
Added by RON KANTERMAN on May 7, 2019 at 9:00am — No Comments
Added by Adam J. Hansen on May 6, 2019 at 8:30am — No Comments
I start off my week with a reflection and random thoughts. We work, we learn, we train, we talk, and we pass on the knowledge, whether it’s in the form of accountability, life lessons, or mastering competences. We make it our goal, mission, duty to pass on the skills, lessons, and knowledge learned to other members. By doing this we can only hope that someday, they too can pass on what they have learned to other new members. Hopefully if we have done our job correctly the cycle continues to…Continue
Added by John on May 1, 2019 at 1:20pm — No Comments
Are we losing sight of civility in the fire service - especially on social media forums? Is it already lost? Constructive debate and dialogue is taking a back seat to the discourse of demeaning comments and anger over any differing opinions or tactics. Ideology has replaced thoughtful discussion between people of contrasting backgrounds, response…
Added by Paul Combs on April 24, 2019 at 9:49am — No Comments
I recently reviewed the “25 Things Probationary Firefighters Should Know and Do” in order to build a great firefighter reputation, created by fire service leaders Frank Viscuso (retired Deputy Chief, Town of Kearny Fire Department) and Michael Terpak (retired Deputy Chief, Jersey City Fire Department). I’ve seen similar lists that frequently address the probationary firefighter, but what about the rest of us? Shouldn’t there be a similar list for…Continue
Added by Nick J. Salameh on April 22, 2019 at 1:24pm — No Comments
One of the current big controversies in the fire service is substance abuse testing and possibly terminating firefighters within the confines of Zero-Tolerance department policies. Departments with substance abuse policies designed to ensure the safety of the firefighters and the community they serve. Contained within these policies(1) is the testing for reasonable suspicion, the protection of employee’s rights, rehabilitation opportunities, last chance agreements and the ramifications of…Continue
Added by John K. Murphy on April 19, 2019 at 3:00pm — No Comments