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July 2013 Blog Posts (25)

Hose Bed Prop

Simple, yet very effective...Hose Bed Prop-Heads Up Firefighting

Added by Dave Werner on July 31, 2013 at 11:38am — No Comments


As the old saying goes, "you make up time getting out of the door (firehouse) on an emergency run, not on the street (driving fast)".

To compare todays "turnout" times to those of times past, a few different stories come to mind. The first is of Engine Company No. 4 in the (Washington, DC) District of Columbia Fire Department.…


Added by Chief Anthony Kelleher on July 31, 2013 at 11:00am — No Comments


Many cities are feeling the economic pinch of poor budget management or simply bad economic luck. Whichever the case may be, some city managers are pointing fingers at everyone else, of course, for their plight. This cartoon is not stating that some public employee unions are blameless, because in part, they are (that's why they are in the car and not standing along…


Added by Paul Combs on July 31, 2013 at 7:46am — 3 Comments

The Most Important Person on the Job

This phrase has been used countless times in the fire service to describe nearly as many positions: from the chief, the company officer, the senior firefighter, to the guys riding the backstep; although in my experience the most important person on the job is the training officer.

Being a firefighter today is not an easy job; our shareholders (the citizens we serve) expect us to be experts at everything from haz-mat mitigation, to wildland firefighting, to paramedicine, to vehicle…


Added by Nick Ledin on July 30, 2013 at 7:30pm — 1 Comment

Drilling for the Prevention of Bad Things

Drilling for effectiveness cannot be overstated enough.  In posts and articles firefighters and officers are imploring that we, as a fire service, put a heavy emphasis on drilling and training on a regular basis.

Not just when training is scheduled, but everyday we are at the fire house, we must use the equipment and techniques to master our craft and to know the capabilities and intricacies of our equipment and that of ourselves.  What have we forgotten?…


Added by Jason Hoevelmann on July 30, 2013 at 11:07am — No Comments

Because We Can

Over my short career in the fire service, I have been asked many times: “Why do you care so much?” I often answer with: because I can.

Everyone should have that reason to get out of bed and get the day started.  Many days it…


Added by Jonah Smith on July 29, 2013 at 2:38pm — No Comments

Are You Ladder Ready?

A few months ago I posted about operating on a quint and the idea of reverse laying for first due engines that run with quints.  A great deal of us are operating on these apparatus everyday and don't have a single designation as an engine or a truck, rather we are assigned based on our order of arrival and on what tasks need to be done.  Most of the time we are not assigned by what type of apparatus we arrive in.

We are also running thin in regards to…


Added by Jason Hoevelmann on July 27, 2013 at 8:23pm — No Comments


Politics, attitudes and every other negative thing you can think of is in and around our firehouses at any given time. Its an unfortunate, yet true fact of our culture/life.

But, through the thick of this negativity, do you ever take a minute to step back and remember WHY WE ARE HERE? Why do or did we have the passion that a…


Added by Chief Anthony Kelleher on July 24, 2013 at 1:37pm — No Comments

Talking in Circles

Talk is cheap. Let's mount up and get moving...Talking in Circles-Heads Up Firefighting

Added by Dave Werner on July 22, 2013 at 8:52pm — No Comments

Talking in Circles

Talk is cheap. Let's mount up and get moving...

Added by Dave Werner on July 22, 2013 at 8:51pm — No Comments


We all know this guy, right?

Click link below to see more of Paul's work or to order prints:


Added by Paul Combs on July 19, 2013 at 1:36pm — No Comments

Are you prepared for you enemies?

"Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.”

― Sun Tzu, The Art of War

We are engaged in a war. A war that never ends. As firefighters and even fire officers we must be able to understand our enemies or even think just like our enemies so we can be successful on the Fireground, our battle field. We must be students of fire dynamics and building construction.Then we must learn about our strategies and tactics to… Continue

Added by James Edward McClelland, Jr. on July 17, 2013 at 9:30pm — No Comments

Leaving a Legacy

When you walk out of the station for the last time, what will remain...Leaving a Legacy-Heads Up Firefighting

Added by Dave Werner on July 17, 2013 at 8:26pm — No Comments

The Duty To Lead - Part One



The duty of being an effective leader in today’s fire department is not an easy one. Notice that I referred to it as a duty, and not a task. When you accept your position as a company officer, you inherently assume the duty of leading the men and women under your command in a variety of environments.…


Added by Matt Verlaque on July 17, 2013 at 2:00pm — No Comments

Spreading the Word

A few blogs to check out, and why we bother with this blogging nonsense...Spreading the Word

Added by Dave Werner on July 16, 2013 at 7:36pm — No Comments

The Scaled Back Fire Alarm Response... friend or foe?

Many organizations across the country have scaled back their automatic fire alarm response over the past 5 years. Many fire departments are simply having a single engine respond to fire alarm calls, while others have cut back the response to an engine and a truck. For the sake of this article, we will not address Department of Insurance standards or the changing of these standard to allow for the reduction in responding assets.


Why cut back the…


Added by Justin Graney on July 11, 2013 at 3:45pm — No Comments

Dear "Friends"

Politicians and administrators can take funding, pay, positions and pensions, but we own our pride, purpose and the public's trust.

The tide of political disrespect, blame and distrust of public servants only seems to ebb when flags are lowered, badges draped and processions pass through their towns.

The supreme sacrifices we sometimes make leave our children, our spouses and our homes empty so that you may…


Added by Brian Brush on July 11, 2013 at 9:01am — No Comments

Leadership Under Fire: Fall conference registration now open!!!

The 2013 "Making Yourself Hard to Kill" fall conference will be held October 25-26 in Philadelphia, PA. Registration is now open, and there are discounts for those who register early so get on it!…

Invitation Top Banner


Added by Dave Werner on July 10, 2013 at 5:01pm — No Comments

DISAPPEARING ACT - July Magazine Cartoon

Added by Paul Combs on July 10, 2013 at 3:53pm — No Comments

Know your Flows

How many of you have been on fires where your first lines off the rig are not working? Its like your wasting your time with these hoses because your not getting anywhere. THE FIRE IS NOT GOING OUT.


I recall one I was on. The crew I was supervising was slinging the water yet it was not working at all. I took the pipe from them and noticed that it was at like 30gpm's. Now the attic was rolling, the roof was nearly gone, the 2nd floor was free burning I mean it was going. The…


Added by Chris Willis on July 8, 2013 at 1:49pm — No Comments

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