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October 2009 Blog Posts (22)

Recipe For Disaster

I love Halloween! It's my favorite holiday and my favorite time of year, so it only seemed appropriate to combine the "witching hour" into my latest commentary.

She really is brewing quite a disaster, and sadly, it doesn't take a witch to cook-up this poison - we do a fine job, ourselves.

Added by Paul Combs on October 31, 2009 at 6:30pm — No Comments

Suicide Awareness

Due to numerous comments, I'd like to take a moment and highlight one of my recent Fire Engineering mag illustrations.

The illustration in question tackles the topic of firefighter suicide and the fact that we can't always see the underlying problems that lead to this shattering conclusion. This topic had been eating away at me for over a year before settling on a visual commentary. In 2008, my Department went through such an ordeal… Continue

Added by Paul Combs on October 30, 2009 at 8:30pm — 1 Comment

size up photos for training

I am curently looking for size up photos for aspiring and current officers. I have been all over the web with limited success. Does anyone have any photos they would be willing to share and or point me in the right direction. I have visited many of the usual suspects: fire nuggets, engineering and google photos. I have seen a lot of very cool stuff but, not what I am looking for. Photo wise I can use everything from mobile homes to commercial/taxpayer photos. We have it all in district. Thank… Continue

Added by Frank Beauvais on October 30, 2009 at 3:26pm — 2 Comments

Safer Grant Application Period Open

Safer Grant Application Period Open

The Department of Homeland Security today announced that the application period for the SAFER Grants is now open. It's important to remember that in June of this year the president approved new rules for how the SAFER Grant is going to be allocated and accessed this year. Fire departments this year can use SAFER money not only to increase staffing which is fundamentally important for safe firefighting but now departments can use SAFER money to… Continue

Added by Bobby Halton on October 30, 2009 at 2:00pm — No Comments

Sprinklers Win Common Sense Wins Finally!

Important Code Update: from the AFSA

In today's meeting of the International Code Council (ICC) in Baltimore, Maryland, proposals made to eliminate the requirement for residential fire sprinklers in the International Residential Code (IRC) were defeated. These requirements were included in the 2009 IRC, to become effective January 1, 2011. Proposals to modify the 2012 International Residential Code included RB 54, which would have removed the mandatory requirement and made it an… Continue

Added by Bobby Halton on October 29, 2009 at 12:00pm — No Comments

Congressional Fire Services Institute Webinar featuring Dr. Denis Onieal

Congressional Fire Services Institute Webinar featuring

Dr. Denis Onieal, Superintendent of the National Fire Academy

CFSI Webinar Series

DATE: November 5, 2009

TIME: 2:00 - 2:45 p.m. (EST)

LOCATION: Your personal computer!

COST: Free

RSVP: Email

Moderated by Bill Webb, CFSI Executive Director, the program will feature Dr. Denis Onieal, Superintendent of the National Fire Academy. The two of them will… Continue

Added by Bobby Halton on October 28, 2009 at 3:06pm — No Comments

Crystal Ball

Added by Paul Combs on October 22, 2009 at 6:00pm — No Comments

Looking Back!

As usual I I found cool and interesting historical stuff from Chief Billy on Firefighter Close Probably got this stuff from our very own fire service history wizard Chief Glenn Corbett...LOL Anyway this was recently posted on the site about two historic fires tragically claiming the lives of our brothers in years past.


Added by Brad Hoff on October 22, 2009 at 4:00pm — No Comments

Taking a Shot at Public Health

As a firefighter/paramedic, I'm embarrassed over the scene being created by health care workers (including nurses, medics, and firefighters) refusing flu vaccination. The consequences are serious: they cast public doubt over the best tactic we have to prevent spread of influenza in our communities. Vaccines have slashed death rates from twenty five diseases. Get a flu shot in the fall and you are half as likely to die during winter as people who don’t. When physicians, nurses, medics,… Continue

Added by Mike McEvoy on October 22, 2009 at 10:01am — 10 Comments

It's like riding a bike

As I mentioned in my last blog about buddy breathing, 75% of what you learn (hands-on wise) is lost - forgotten, if you don't reinforce (practice) it within two weeks. There is psychological theory that states "when people are put in a stressful situation, they revert to what is "usual and customary" for them. These to "theory's" work hand in hand and ignoring them has cost a lot of us our lives.

Rick Lasky took self-rescue and firefighter rescue to new levels several years ago. With the… Continue

Added by Skip Coleman on October 20, 2009 at 4:43pm — 4 Comments


Well it seems a lot has been happening in OUR country lately with American Flag displays in some apartment complex in Albany Oregon or a decal in a Pa FD not being allowed! In all my years in the Fire Service not much has been held more sacred than Patriotism and displaying the American flag and all that it stands for! We have all given our own personal sacrifices in one way or another and an insurmountable number have given their lives for OUR FLAG and COUNTRY to allow her to forever wave!… Continue

Added by Brad Hoff on October 19, 2009 at 11:30am — 5 Comments

BRÁITHEREACHAS THAR GACH NÍ - Brotherhood Above All Else


Key Note for October 10th 2009 – Interior Firefighters, Alaska State Firefighter's Association "Fireman’s Ball"

When people ask me about the “Brotherhood”, I often find myself at a loss for words to define it for them. Because for me, the “Brotherhood” we are speaking of is something felt very deeply, something that has taken years to mature and show itself, but which once exposed ran to full throttle, without reservation. I find that it is something… Continue

Added by Ben Fleagle on October 16, 2009 at 12:00pm — 11 Comments

Important Update on Firefighter Michelle Smith's Murder case

Firefighter Michelle Smith was responding to a car accident with injuries when she was killed in the line of duty on Dec. 20, 2008. The defense for the man who killed her claimed becuse Michelle was working as a medic on that call then he did not kill a firefighter. Fire Engineering disagrees, Mr. Taye killed a firefighter.

We wear many titles as firefighters, medics, rescue techs, confined space experts, hazardous materials responders, but inclusive of all of those other titles… Continue

Added by Bobby Halton on October 16, 2009 at 11:55am — 2 Comments

Remembering September 11th. President Obama's way.

This Blog was originally posted September 14 but was deleted in the set up on the new web site. I am posting it again.

I generally let politics roll off my back. I believe I'm too ignorant about the true facts and history in general to comment. But something caught my eye (or more rightfully so - my ear) a few days back. I was listening to talk radio and the host mentioned that if you visit the White House web site… Continue

Added by Skip Coleman on October 12, 2009 at 3:34pm — 3 Comments

Buddy Breathing

I have two problems with the buddy-breathing device on SCBA’s.

1) Unless you drill on using it “often”, like once a month, in blacked out facepiece conditions, you probably won’t be able to actually do it in a real, stress-filled emergency. 75% of what you learn is forgotten within two weeks if it is not reinforced! (That’s a fact Jack!)

2) It’s (for lack of a better word) illegal to use. Not to buy (to the joy of the manufactures) but to actually use.

When I… Continue

Added by Skip Coleman on October 12, 2009 at 11:00am — 8 Comments

Support Firefighters Cancer Support Network

Added by Bobby Halton on October 11, 2009 at 1:49pm — No Comments

ACORN to get $1 million of the fire act grant Again????

We are watching our federal funding for firefighting slowly eroding day by day. Earlier this year the Obama administration proposed cutting the fire act grant budget by $400 million. The original budget proposal from the president's office was to fund the fire act grant by only $170 million. Only through aggressive and coordinated action were we able to get some of that money, not all of it restored. Now we see in this article in the Washington Times that identifies acorn the community… Continue

Added by Bobby Halton on October 7, 2009 at 12:15pm — No Comments

FireEngineering's new look and Fire Engineering University

We are very proud to announce the opening of Fire Engineering University: Online Continuing Education for Firefighters

This will change the way fire service professionals approach continuing education. Our goal is to provide you with relevant, topical educational content that is easily accessible. Content written exclusively by the authors in Fire Engineering for you, serious firefighters. For a full listing of courses with descriptions, credits, and fees, go to… Continue

Added by Bobby Halton on October 6, 2009 at 2:44pm — 2 Comments

Passing On - A Simple and East Way to Remember How to Lower LODD's

A Ransom Note To The American Fire Service

IF yoU CoMplY witH theSE


DeMAndS wE will LowER The NUMber of LODDss







tHe CloCk has StaRtED

tHE NeXt MovE is yoUrs

we wiLL be WATCHinG

As found on

Added by Ray McCormack on October 5, 2009 at 10:00am — No Comments



The second and final phase of the Charlestown Firefighters Memorial Park will take place on Sunday, October 4, 2009 at 2PM at the Firefighters Memorial Park at the corner of Bunker Hill and Charles Street, Charlestown.

This second and final phase will be a fitting and noble Memorial for those Boston Firefighters, though not natives of Charlestown, who died in the Line of Duty in the highest traditions of the Boston Fire Department.… Continue

Added by Bobby Halton on October 3, 2009 at 9:26am — No Comments

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