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September 2017 Blog Posts (16)

Diversity in the Fire Service - An important discussion

When you examine the cause of litigation in the fire service there is one important fact that we need to address. We sue ourselves internally as opposed to be sued by outside sources with the following statics obtained from Curt Varone’s website.

  • A fire department is 9.1 times more likely to be sued by a subordinate than by our customers: A fire chief is 12 times more likely to be sued by a subordinate than by a…

Added by John K. Murphy on September 30, 2017 at 10:00am — 1 Comment

"Leaving this job better than you found it" Part II

The church is full with standing room only. A sea of class A uniforms, badges covered with mourning bands and fellow brothers standing at parade rest outside. As a flag draped casket is pulled from the hose bed of an engine everyone snaps to attention, bagpipes bellow out amazing grace as the casket enters the church. The casket is positioned at the front of the church and the honor guard folds the flag. As a firefighter walks toward the pulpit everyone is silent as they reflect on the… Continue

Added by Jason Fullmer on September 28, 2017 at 6:40pm — No Comments

Volunteer Fire Service Recruitment

How do we get new members into the volunteer fire service? To answer this, we must fully explore the problem that exists in many communities. We must understand three things our people, our department, and our community.…


Added by Brad Nair on September 27, 2017 at 12:26pm — No Comments

MFA Tools and Rules: Changing Too Fast!?

Even to this zealot, the arguments against the tactical improvements inspired by fire dynamics research can, at first, sound persuasive:"The aggressive interior attack has proven effectiveness."; "Experiments have little application to the 'real world' of structure fires."; and "Nothing works everywhere” are common examples.  Furthermore, I have heard and read these and similar statements from many fire service leaders, and such pronouncements generally garner more applause…


Added by Mark J. Cotter on September 26, 2017 at 6:14am — No Comments

Creating Your Own Peer Support Group for Firefighters

Firefighters don’t fight fires or respond to emergencies alone. For the safety of themselves, their peers, and others, they approach crisis situations as a team. The emergencies that firefighters respond to affect them emotionally, long after the crises are under control. Firefighters in the upper ranks have seen first-hand that job-related stress in the firehouse can lead to more serious problems like excessive…


Added by Mark W Lamplugh Jr on September 25, 2017 at 12:30pm — No Comments

How A Meme About Ventilation Went "FDNY Viral"

I made up a meme on Facebook recently on the need for ventilation to be "Controlled, Communicated, & Coordinated". I think we'd all agree that this is a good tactical practice to observe. The meme generated a lot of discussion about the practice of ventilation in general and several FDNY "Heavyweights" like Chiefs Vin Dunn & John Salka, Capt. John Ceriello, and Lt. Bob Pressler weighed in. Now these are all guys who have forgotten more than I know, so I just sat back (with a…


Added by Kevin F. Burns on September 25, 2017 at 12:24pm — No Comments

Pearls of Wisdom from the Past: Door Control & Isolation

When it comes to search, door control (isolation) is not just for VES, it can be utilized during conventional operations as well.  When searching ahead of the engine, immediate control of the entry door…

Added by Nicholas Papa on September 24, 2017 at 7:00pm — No Comments



“If you don’t hustle, I don’t accept it. If a player shows up the club, I show up the player.” Billy Martin.

NY Yankees Coach Billy Martin said this after making a pitching change and sending Paul Blair to right field to replace Reggie Jackson. Boston’s Jim Rice had poked…


Added by Warren Cersley on September 24, 2017 at 1:29pm — No Comments

Risk little to save little

Risk little to save little

We’ve all heard it. Probably the first time you heard it was in recruit school right? “Risk little to save little. Risk a lot to save a lot.” What is “little” though? Who gets to decide that? That question can only really be answered based on perspective. Depending on the person answering the question, the perspective is going to change. If you ask a lot of structural firefighters across the United States they are going to tell you that the “little” is… Continue

Added by Clay Magee on September 22, 2017 at 10:22pm — No Comments


Fire Engineering Magazine September editorial illustration.

Remember, there are more lives in your hands than your own when you set behind the wheel. Be trained. Be rested. Be mentally ready for anything and everything.

Stay Fired Up, and be ready!…


Added by Paul Combs on September 18, 2017 at 8:45am — No Comments

Sleep Tips and Strategies For Firefighters

Sleep Tips and Strategies For Firefighters

By: Jordan Ponder

BE SUCCESSFUL: Improving Your Sleep

Everyone can agree that sleep is important to your health.…


Added by The First Twenty on September 14, 2017 at 9:30am — No Comments

Problems are Opportunities

     Every adversity you and the team you are leading will ever encounter is either a problem or an opportunity. Although one might think there are many different variables that would distinguish one from the other, there is really only one difference between the two – YOUR ATTITUDE. That’s right. Often times the difference between a problem and an opportunity has everything to do with how you look at the challenge at hand.



Added by Frank Viscuso on September 13, 2017 at 4:58pm — No Comments


Never forget, and keep those still suffering with the scars of that day in your thoughts and prayers.

Added by Paul Combs on September 11, 2017 at 8:31am — No Comments

Eye in the Sky: Drones for Fire Service Training

Drones have added tremendous value in the fire service since the beginning of the second decade of this century.  In its multitude of uses ranging from a 360-degree size-up tool to delivering high-profile images in real time to commanders as they decide how to respond, conducting flyovers of areas involved in natural disasters, and locating seats of the fire in firefighting operations, to name a few.  Drones used for fire service training can also be a substantial value added tool.  Drones…


Added by Thomas D. Kuglin Jr. on September 5, 2017 at 5:10am — No Comments


We Americans can be rebellious by nature, quarrelsome to the point of violence, contentious toward our elected officials, suspicious of our neighbors, and melodramatic about the most insignificant of events. That being said, I will argue that no other nation comes together as a people when tragedy strikes like Americans do. It is, unfortunately, one of the only true…


Added by Paul Combs on September 4, 2017 at 10:20am — No Comments

Firefighters and Addiction: The Value of Peer Support

When we think of firefighters or any other type of first responder, it often reminds us of the brotherhood that they share. Early in their careers, firefighters learn to lean on one another inside and outside of the station house. For many of them, there’s nothing like hitting the local bar to decompress after a tough call. Some firefighters can manage the stress that accompanies the trauma that they…


Added by Mark W Lamplugh Jr on September 4, 2017 at 9:00am — No Comments

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