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April 2012 Blog Posts (21)

Culture of Self-Improvement

Self Improvement must be driven from within to have an effect. Outside influences may affect one’s ability to improve but for change to last, one must change for them self.

The Fire Service, by our virtue, has a culture to improve. The tools we use to complete emergency scene tasks are an example. Even today, companies modify tools based on issues unique to their…


Added by Christopher Huston on April 26, 2012 at 7:00am — No Comments

Reducing Heart Disease in Firefighters

Its been very well documented that the leading cause of firefighter-on-duty deaths is related to heart disease. Therefore any information regarding decreasing the chances of heart disease are very valuable to the firefighting community. I've recently been researching the correlation between cholesterol and heart disease and have found some interesting correlations.

The long-established dietary recommendations…


Added by Aaron Zamzow on April 25, 2012 at 10:36pm — No Comments

ACFD Gets It!

Check out this short video on fire behavior that Arlington County recently conducted for their recruit class...department's are starting to "get" this stuff!

Video can be seen on

Added by Dave Stacy on April 24, 2012 at 8:43pm — 1 Comment

Firefighter Mohawk?

What's your take on a firefighter having a mohawk haircut? Does it matter? Why or why not? 

While at FDIC, many instructors weighed in on the importance of our appearance. Most of it surrounded the topic of the generation gap (Baby Boomers-Millennials). The newest generation (Millennial Generation) was cited by one instructor as being disrespectful and lazy. He went on to say "They can't even change a spare tire."

Another instructor pushed back on this saying we (Baby Boomers…


Added by Matt Carlson on April 22, 2012 at 12:48pm — 4 Comments

FD Calling Card

I became interested in military death and calling cards when my brother was presented with an ace of spades from a retired door gunner. The gunner kept the card on his person during the Vietnam war. 30 years later, my brother Waylon was a door gunner from the same squadron (HCS-84). For him, it was a huge honor to be handed the card understanding who it came from and what it meant. It's now framed and proudly hangs on his wall at home.

As you noted, after 9/11 the world changed for…

Added by Matt Carlson on April 21, 2012 at 5:25pm — No Comments

The Road to FDIC 2012

It is about 1030 am. In about 2 hours, I will get in my truck and head south. A four-hour drive filled with anticipation and curiosity. My destination; FDIC 2012. It has been roughly 55 weeks since the last time we did this. Each week I put aside just a few dollars to pay for the 7 days of life at the convention, living in the hotel, eating at the restaurants and sharing stories with a few thousand of my brothers and sisters.

I always mentally prepare for an event. Whether it is the…


Added by Christopher Huston on April 15, 2012 at 9:30am — No Comments

First Due Friday; Heavy Fire, Standpipe Ops & Mayday! (Video)

This video is a great training tool for size-up, radio comms & Command presence.  This FD sounds very professional despite difficult fire conditions.  This week we've got heavy fire & smoke on an upper floor w/ standpipe ops in progress and a Mayday called while transitioning to Defensive Ops.   Compare this FD's ops to your FD and  give us your RECEO VS considerations.  Enjoy!…


Added by Matt McDowell on April 13, 2012 at 9:32am — No Comments

Funeral Details for Philadelphia LODDs

Hat tip to Billy G. Details from the Philly Fire Commish Ayers:

It is with deep regret that the Department announces the death of Lieutenant Robert Neary, assigned to Ladder 10, Platoon "C".  Lieutenant Neary, a veteran with over 37 years of service, died in the line of duty Monday, April 9, 2012.

All off-duty officers and members are invited to attend the services in uniform.  Uniform of the day will be Class "A" Dress, with blouse coat and cap.



Added by Fire Engineering on April 11, 2012 at 9:06am — No Comments

What will your nickname be?

I wrote this quite some time ago for our Municipal Districts Recruitment Drive, I just stumbled across it and it brought a smile to my face. I am a Captain now and can only hope that I can lead as I was once led.  I thought this would be a fitting start to my foray into blogging on Fire Engineering.  Hope you enjoy...........

The First Call

It’s 2:00 in the morning your fast asleep when suddenly the peaceful silence is broken by your radio “Foothills…


Added by Chad Sartison on April 11, 2012 at 8:30am — 2 Comments


FDIC is a very special event! It brings together the best instructors, best hands-on training, best classroom seminars, and the absolute best experience in the fire service! If you're serious about your training and have a passion for knowledge, this is the place to be.

Looking forward to catching up with friends, too! I will be there all week…


Added by Paul Combs on April 9, 2012 at 4:44pm — 5 Comments

Firefighter Fitness-- Does P90X Measure Up?

It’s often said that any movement is better than no movement at all. I personally have to agree with that statement, I think its imperative that everyone (especially FireRescue Athletes) are active. The big question milling about in the Fire Rescue field is what is the most effective type of activity for firefighters? Ideally, we should be performing movements that support, enable, and…

Added by Aaron Zamzow on April 9, 2012 at 3:42pm — No Comments

The Long Stretch

Take a look at the pictures and think about getting water on the fire to the upper floor and/or making rescues.  This building is one that is old and not sprinklered.  It sits off of the road and aerial access is extremely limited, almost ineffective.…


Added by Jason Hoevelmann on April 9, 2012 at 2:00pm — No Comments

Full Bucket Swing Extrication

Here’s a not so routine extrication to think about as you cruise by your local public park.  How are you going to get a child out of a full bucket swing who has become stuck.

The scenario is: a child’s legs are to big for the openings, but gravity squeezed…


Added by Paul Hasenmeier on April 9, 2012 at 8:03am — No Comments

Firefighter Fitness-- Is CrossFit it?

I've worked in the fitness industry for over 20 years and have seen a lot of "fads" come and go.  Not to age myself but when I started in the industry step classes, leotards and zubaz where still popular.  Back in the day every health club focused on having the most updated machinery possible, today you see more minimalistic gyms pop up all the time.  Along with these fads have come the "next" best workout program.  I remember the…


Added by Aaron Zamzow on April 8, 2012 at 10:48pm — No Comments

Trustees; Train Hard or Go Home!

You heard me!

Don’t expect accommodations or special considerations.

You’re a grunt just like the rest of us. Time to pay your dues.

You can’t be on top of your game if you don’t train.

You can’t extend your reach or maximize your effectiveness, unless you are willing to put your blood and sweat into it.

You don’t have the first idea of what I’m talking about, do you?

You were never a firefighter, were…


Added by Art "Chief Reason" Goodrich on April 8, 2012 at 7:16pm — 2 Comments

The Best Core Exercise for Firefighters, EMTs and Paramedics...

As a trainer (and as a firefighter in the workout room), I hear people saying, I want “abs” I want to help people achieve this. However, I frequently see people performing the least productive exercise for their abs. This is the crunch performed while lying down on a mat with the head and neck supported. This will not get you results. If you want to see the abs you feel during this exercise, change your diet!

This is another…


Added by Aaron Zamzow on April 4, 2012 at 2:52pm — No Comments

What are you using tradition for?


What Are You Using Fire-Service Tradition For?

Jim Spell November 22nd, 2011

In little towns from Maine to the Carolinas, fire stations are resplendent in their brick buildings, draped in bunting and emanating the smell of smoke and leather every time the bay doors open. Helmets are handed down in ceremony from parent to child and sanctified by decades of…


Added by Jim Spell on April 4, 2012 at 11:41am — No Comments


There's no one more valuable than a mentor. I personally have many and cherish each as a dear friend! I hope they know what a huge difference they've made in my life and career as an artist and a firefighter. I'm sure each of us can name many who have shaped and molded us into who we are today. And I can think of no better repayment than to give the same gift…


Added by Paul Combs on April 3, 2012 at 1:30pm — 3 Comments

How School Buses Are Made

The video below shows parts of Blue Bird Corporations manufacturing process.  It will help you get an idea of where the strongest parts of the bus are located.  Of course different manufacturers have varying methods.

It is important to know the construction of school buses, so we can attack them in the weakest areas first.  Ultimately they are built like tanks to protect the passengers, which places the challenge on us as firefighters to gain access quickly and extricate rapidly.  …


Added by Paul Hasenmeier on April 2, 2012 at 8:38pm — No Comments

Apartment Fire Considerations

Engine House Training, LLC

Take a look at the video and let’s have a discussion. It is not a critique of what the video shows, but more of what are our considerations if we pull up to this fire. We all have buildings like this one and depending upon our resources and response area, how would we deploy on this fire? Watch the video and ask and discuss these questions with your crew:

–What type building construction…


Added by Jason Hoevelmann on April 1, 2012 at 11:00am — No Comments

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