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If you're checking this out, I hope this finds you well and ready for a great new year! I have the great honor of knowing some of the contributors here and I look forward to interacting with this community.

Train Real, Train Hard, Be Safe,

Added by Dave Gallagher on January 11, 2009 at 5:50pm — 3 Comments

Time for Solutions

Wow! There were 114 Line of Duty Deaths for 2008. Did you see the statistics? So many categories, so many stats. Tucked inside those numbers are the stories, brief as they are, of how those firefighters died in the line of duty. Pennsylvania was tied for second with Oregon in LODDs behind North Carolina. It sickens me to have to state it that way, but however its said, the fact remains the same. Here in PA, we have had 203 fire departments suffer at least 1 lodd. That's about 10% of our State's… Continue

Added by Andy Marsh on January 11, 2009 at 5:25am — No Comments

About Me

I'm a computer programmer and one of my current interests is "community" software.

I started creating software 30 yrs ago and have been a paid professional for 19 yrs now. My wife and 2 sons and I reside in Broken Arrow, just outside of Tulsa, OK.

When I joined PennWell in July of 2008 the first website I updated was the Courage & Valor Foundation. Since then I've become involved in an effort to be able to provide all the PennWell websites with "community" features,… Continue

Added by James Stansell on January 10, 2009 at 12:35am — No Comments

Western Washington is taking a beating!

Things have been pretty crazy over and up here for the last 3 weeks with the hard hitting snow, now it has all melted within two days plus 14" of rain within the last 60 hours. The flooding is amazing and devastating. The fire departments across Western Washington have had their hands full with water craft and helicopter rescues consistant for the last 3 days. Amazingly enough, there has yet to be a loss of life that I know of. Knock on wood(if you see…


Added by Chad Berg on January 9, 2009 at 10:30am — 6 Comments

Concept Idea - Just Throwing it Out There; Infrared Goggle Pop Down in Hallways for Structure Fires - By Lance Winslow

By Lance Winslow

Most people who are killed in structure fires die from the smoke not the flames or fire. Generally they are overcome by the smoke and lack of oxygen as the fire takes all the oxygen and replaces the airspace with smoke. There needs to be a way to get these people out of the fire situation and structure immediately to prevent loss of life, however without good visibility one cannot see to get to a fire escape, stairway or exit.

I propose a drop… Continue

Added by Lance Winslow on January 8, 2009 at 9:41am — No Comments

That's Why.

From -

I recently responded to a post on from my friend Adam Box, who shared the dilemma he was experiencing with his significant other:

Tomorrow, I will be attending the funeral of Elizabeth Fire Department Acting Captain Gary Stephens. This will be my second (unfortunately I doubt it will be my last) time attending a LODD funeral.

I was in a bit of a bad mood (about something unrelated) and was…

Added by Tiger Schmittendorf on January 7, 2009 at 7:00am — No Comments

Cordination of Attack

Does your department have a good foundation for its SOG/SOP's do they make sense? Do they build from simple to complex? Does the first alarm have pre-determinded assignments? What is your staffing like? Does the SOG properly address the fireground basics ? lets talk about these questions what can we do to fix or change broken SOG's.

Added by Chris Costamagna on January 6, 2009 at 11:10pm — No Comments

Can we establish a common understanding of risk? or.. Should we write it off?

Can we establish a common understanding of risk? I believe that this is a very difficult question to answer. Risk, is in the eye of the beholder. The ability to adequately assess risk demands a high level of experience and training, a keen eye for detail, a thorough knowledge of building construction and an ability to process and make sense of incomplete information (much of which is of dubious value). The decisions born of this process are always time critical, often life and death and have to… Continue

Added by Art Zern on January 5, 2009 at 12:48am — 13 Comments

Chat room just for fire fighter's

Why don't we have and "Chat Room" for for our site?

Added by Brenda Tenney on January 4, 2009 at 12:23pm — 8 Comments

Capt. Gary Stephens firefighter dies in the line of duty Elizabeth New Jersey January 2, 2009

In the early-morning hours today January 2nd 2009 57-year-old Elizabeth (N.J.) Firefighter Gary Stephens was killed in the line of duty while backing up an apparatus which was laying a supply line at a working structure fire. Capt. Gary Stephens suffered severe trauma when the apparatus he was backing ran over him this morning around 2 AM. We do not have sufficient information at this time to report on what exactly occurred to cause Capt. Stephens to fall beneath the rig. However we felt… Continue

Added by Bobby Halton on January 2, 2009 at 1:30pm — No Comments

Tandem Attack Video

I keep reading how departments insist on using 13/4 lines for Standpipe operations. Usually the set up includes a gated Wye, so a second line can also be stretched to supplement the lower GPM's. How many departments have ever trained on a tandem attack. If anyone is interested in learning more about how to do this leave your information on the comment page. A video on this topic will be available early next year.
Ray McCormack

Added by Ray McCormack on December 31, 2008 at 8:16am — 30 Comments

Arson Neighborhood Mobile Watch Program for Summer Fire Season; Plan Ahead - By Lance Winslow

By Lance Winslow

Due to the bizarre weather patterns this winter California got pummeled with rain storms while Oregon and Washington are at a deficit. Nevada and Arizona now have deserts, which have come alive with blooming and greenness. These events are even evident from satellite photos from 100s of miles above the Earth. Even Colorado, Montana, Wyoming are a rain deficits.

The greenery in the deserts… Continue

Added by Lance Winslow on December 30, 2008 at 3:30am — No Comments

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays Brothers and Sisters, enjoy the time with family and friends. Stay safe.

Added by Jordan Smith on December 26, 2008 at 1:03pm — 1 Comment

Riding Positions!

Does your Agency Have riding positions for Engine and Truck/Ladder positions? Are you familar with the concept? If you are please comment on how they work for you. If so does the assignment have a tool assignment also? Does the Position line up with agency Standing orders or SOG's?

Added by Chris Costamagna on December 24, 2008 at 10:00am — 2 Comments


Thanks again to T.S.L and Chief Goldfeder for reminding us to Never Forget!!!

When we think of staffing and Firefighters who gave their lives (especially where staffing was a contributing factor) ...we remember Keokuk, Iowa. Today is the anniversary of the Line of Duty Deaths of Keokuk Assistant Fire Chief Dave McNally, 48, Firefighter Jason Bitting, 29, and Firefighter Nate Tuck, 39...all of whom were killed while attempting the rescue of three trapped kids-who also perished. These… Continue

Added by Brad Hoff on December 22, 2008 at 1:57pm — No Comments

A Lilttle girls Christmas wish

My brother sent this to me and since we are such caring group of people I wanted to help this young girls wish, which could possibly be one of her last, come true.

Hannah's Christmas Wish

This is the true story of my 5-yr old 2nd cousin, Hannah Garman, who was diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme, a rare and incurable brain tumor. She was going to be the flower girl in our…

Added by Brad Hoff on December 18, 2008 at 11:32am — No Comments

Learning from Tragedy Lesson One Preparation

This Monday, December 8th. an F/A-18D returning to Miramar Naval Air station from the USS Abraham Lincoln off the coast of San Diego encountered some type of engine problem forcing the pilot to eject seconds before the jet slammed into a neighborhood just outside the airbase. The resulting explosion destroyed two homes and damaged three more. The most tragic result was the death of four members of one family who were home unfortunately at the time. An additional 20 homes in the area were… Continue

Added by Bobby Halton on December 11, 2008 at 6:02pm — 4 Comments

Chief DeVaughns Memorial

Mike DeVaughn's Services will be, Tuesday December 16, 2008 starting exactly

at 6:30 - ending 8 p.m. Family will be in the church at 6 p.m.

- First Baptist Church North Pole, 609 5th Ave

- Alaska Casual dress.....

- Remember the motto "Simple, simple, simple......" (per Mike's wishes)

There will also be a Celebration of Life, Saturday December 20, 2008

- Birch Lake - Ice fish and outdoor gathering

- bring a dish and…

Added by Brad Hoff on December 11, 2008 at 3:30pm — No Comments

A Fireman loaned has been returned!

It is with a heavy heart and deep saddness that I inform everyone of the Passing Of Micheal DeVaughn Asst. Chief (Ret.) of the Eielson AFB FD, Alaska. Chief DeVaughn had a huge impact on the fire service in Interior Alaska in the early 70's and up until his retirement last year. He was very active in his community and loved to watch his oldest son coach the Eielson Ravens HS football team. Chief was a huge advocate for fire prevention and fire safety throughout his time at Eielson serving as… Continue

Added by Brad Hoff on December 10, 2008 at 10:30am — 1 Comment

Air Medical Safety and the Fire Service

Our recent news announcing proposed FAA rule revisions on Helicopter Emergency Medical Services (HEMS) and a public hearing by the NTSB in February 2009 cry out for fire service involvement (see: 2008 promises to end as the most catastrophic year in the… Continue

Added by Mike McEvoy on December 3, 2008 at 10:02pm — 3 Comments

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