A recent case in New York involving a police officer, taking 10 years to resolve, revives a sleepy law we do not hear much about called the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA).
This case (Wright v. City of Jamestown), involved an Army Reserve officer with the Jamestown (NY) police department initially filed his USERRA claim against the department in 2007 after he was denied…Continue
Added by John K. Murphy on July 26, 2017 at 12:08pm — No Comments
How many times have you heard, "Man, it's like we've got four different fire departments working here!" Many have and we all know the meaning behind that statement. Fire Departments that have 3 or 4 different operational shifts, can often do things each a little differently. You know what I am talking about like differences in daily chores, vehicle maintenance, riding assignments or even operational responses. The amount of "different" can be dependant upon the amount of leadership…Continue
Added by Assistant Chief Billy Greenwood on July 25, 2017 at 4:00pm — No Comments
Added by AB Turenne on July 25, 2017 at 2:30pm — No Comments
Most of us in the fire and emergency services would agree that leadership matters and is vital to the successful outcomes of any organization. We could also agree that many so called leadership gurus and fire service personalities are out on the…Continue
Added by John Dixon on July 25, 2017 at 2:14pm — No Comments
With Fire Prevention month right around the corner you should be looking to finalize your plans. I would like to challenge you to take time this year to change what you have done in the past. I challenge you to put a focus on the close the door message. I also challenge you to make it visual and enjoyable for all those you get the privilege to speak to.
By now every firefighter understands the importance of door control until we have water on the fire. We need to take that message…Continue
Added by P.J. Norwood on July 24, 2017 at 9:17am — No Comments
Last week we discussed two very important character traits; those traits were maintaining a strong work ethic and taking the proper initiative. This week we are going to cover two more equally important character traits that will help you achieve success throughout your fire service…Continue
Added by Christopher Baker on July 24, 2017 at 2:00am — No Comments
Today during some rare downtime at work, I was privileged to receive a phone call from a man that I greatly look up to named Chief Jack Murphy. If you are in the fire service and do not recognize his name, I guarantee that he has impacted your career in some manner, whether you are aware of it or not, from the tireless work he has done advocating on our behalf for safety within the building codes.
Our conversation ranged from the recent Grenfell Tower fire in London, combustible…Continue
Added by James Johnson on July 22, 2017 at 3:25pm — No Comments
I returned from FDIC 2017 with the nagging impression that the American fire service remains divided into two general camps regarding our tactical approaches: those who embrace the results of research, and have modified their methods accordingly; and those who have little accord for experimental evidence, and continue to embrace familiar methods. There was even a significant imbalance in the reactions to the different viewpoints: presenters who spoke of the duty, honor, and sacrifice…Continue
Added by Mark J. Cotter on July 18, 2017 at 7:08am — No Comments
There is a lot of derisive talk these days about appropriate aggressive tactics and when to use them… or not to use them… and quite a few people are making a name for themselves preaching the extremes on both sides of the banter. “Believe and act the way I do or you’re a coward,” or “science and risk aversion is the only true way of the fire…Continue
Added by Paul Combs on July 18, 2017 at 6:41am — No Comments
There are two character traits that will help you stand out from the rest throughout the probationary period; those traits are maintaining a strong work ethic and taking the proper initiative. When it is time to go to work, you have to roll up your…Continue
Added by Christopher Baker on July 18, 2017 at 12:30am — No Comments
In the Fire Service it is important that we recruit the best possible candidates to join our ranks. We spend entire careers building and improving departments. We instill traditions and mold the department into something we’re proud of. Many times, there are family members who also spent a career shaping the department. There is also the trust that has been built with the community. It’s important that we give our…Continue
Added by Justin Thoroughman on July 15, 2017 at 5:00pm — No Comments
There are plenty leaders standing alone on the proverbial organizational island. It has been said time and time again “the higher up the food chain we ascend, the lonelier we may become.” Why is this so? Perhaps we may have lost sight of how vital our values and principles transcend any leadership style. Let’s…Continue
Added by John Dixon on July 14, 2017 at 12:00pm — No Comments
I have deferred my blog page this month to a good friend with a great message. I mentioned Rob (not by name) in Journal Entry #45 “Cancer.” He’s the chief that put off his cardiac testing and went to play golf because he was told there is a 10% chance of a false positive so he couldn’t possibly be sick! He’s in great shape! Well, here’s the real story. I thank…Continue
Added by RON KANTERMAN on July 14, 2017 at 9:29am — No Comments
In the early years of the American fire service there was a surprising number of cities across the country with their own unique version of fire hose thread. Over time, most smaller municipalities have converted to a more universal thread like NH or NPSH. Many larger cities have held onto their threads due to the incredible cost associated with an across the board conversion of all hose, appliances, adapters, and fire systems.
One local example of this in my area is Oklahoma City.…Continue
Added by Brian Brush on July 14, 2017 at 8:38am — No Comments
One of the key components of any crew, team or organization is having a group of people who believe in the same thing. An organization that knows what it truly believes in, and brings together people who believe what the organization believes, can be extremely effective in accomplishing the mission of the organization. Shared identified core values, such as courage, duty, honor, or integrity, give the organization and everyone who is a part of it a benchmark…Continue
Added by Chris Langlois on July 13, 2017 at 12:47pm — No Comments
This is a profession where you have to make the commitment of becoming a lifelong learner. The fire academy is over and now you have found yourself in the Jumpseat. Congratulations, you have arrived; however, the learning doesn’t stop at the completion of the recruit…Continue
Added by Christopher Baker on July 11, 2017 at 8:00am — No Comments
Credibility may be one of the hardest things to build during a career, simply because it takes time and consistency. You do not build your credibility overnight, it is something that is built over years of consistently applying the same morals, values, and ethics to every decision you make, whether on the fire ground or on an emergency scene. One may ask themselves what steps can I take to begin developing my credibility and get started on the road to being a great leader? In this…Continue
Added by Tommy Goran on July 9, 2017 at 4:03pm — No Comments
The Sunday Preach:
It's bigger than you are...
"When you decide to become a member of any fire department, you are making a large commitment. As the often-quoted New York City Chief of Department Edward F. Croker (1899–1911) stated during his tenure, “When a man becomes a fireman his greatest act of bravery has been accomplished. What he does after that is all in the line of work.”
The fire service is family. We all work together to do our…
Added by Douglas Mitchell, Jr. on July 9, 2017 at 11:45am — No Comments
The current opioid epidemic has significantly increased the call volume for departments responding to citizens suffering from drug overdoses. Not a shift goes by without a call to assist someone suffering from an overdose.
When I was a street paramedic, we would receive calls from the public to assist individuals overdosing with alcohol, mushrooms, Freon, airplane glue, Benadryl and cough syrup containing…Continue
Cobwebs, Cowards and Cowboys
“If you never saddled up and entered the arena, your opinion about cowboys lacks matter and merit.” I said that.
I had the privilege recently to hear all of the details of what I consider to be a difficult grab. It was shared first-hand with me because I am…Continue