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Preparing for Promotion; The Interview

Preparing for Promotion; The Interview

Assistant Chief Nicholas Christensen, CFO, MPA


The time has come to submit for promotion.…


Added by Nicholas Christensen on November 4, 2019 at 9:00pm — No Comments

What I Learned at “Fire Camp”

What I Learned at “Fire Camp”

Work is work and no matter how good your fire department is, we all are caught up in the daily grind. Stuff does not go the way we want. We have assignments that we are not really into and sometimes we do not see eye to eye with our coworkers. As much as we don’t like it, these are the realities of our workplace, and over time they can impact…


Added by Dennis P Reilly on November 4, 2019 at 8:51pm — No Comments

Firefighter Target Practice With Ground Ladders

Firefighters must be confident in ground ladder operations. That includes knowing what size ladder is needed to get the job done safely, efficiently, and on the first try. Passing Firefighter I doesn’t make someone an expert. Confidence required for basic skills comes through repetition. No matter how long a firefighter has “been on the job” they must constantly refresh the basics.

Frequently throwing different ground ladders builds confidence in choosing the best…


Added by Blaize on October 26, 2019 at 12:00pm — No Comments

Changing Directions II - Basements and Exteriors

Firefighters have been provided with new extinguishment strategies that offer better speed, effectiveness, and safety. A triple win! Continuing on the theme introduced with my last post ( regarding the new fire attack vectors recommended by fire dynamics research, first addressing Attic fires, now we will…


Added by Mark J. Cotter on October 21, 2019 at 8:30am — No Comments

Firefighter Costumes

In just a few short days, a time-honored tradition will once again take place. Across the country, people will spend their hard-earned money to buy sweet sugary nectar and then hand the treats to complete strangers under threat of tricks. There will be ghosts, ghouls, and goblins galore. There will be princesses, action heroes, and the ever-present “what are you, honey?” costumes that look nothing like what they’re alleged to be.  Just smile and affirm them.  Unless it's an old-…


Added by John Lightly on October 15, 2019 at 7:30am — No Comments

Does anyone one on here actually read these blogs? Thinking about sharing my thoughts, experiences, etc if anyone has interests. Would you like yet another Brother sharing knowledge, incites, experi…

Does anyone one on here actually read these blogs? Thinking about sharing my thoughts, experiences, etc if anyone has interests.

Would you like yet another Brother sharing knowledge, incites, experiences, points of view? Let me know


Added by Bob Fields on October 11, 2019 at 2:50pm — 4 Comments

Changing Directions - Attic, basement, and exterior fires

Much of the energy expended in promoting, discussing, and opposing Modern Fire Attack (MFA) methods regards the use of exterior streams for controlling fires in structures, an understandable focus given the rather revolutionary, and therefore controversial, nature of the research findings.  (In a nutshell, applying water from the outside was found to be a whole lot more useful, and a whole lot less harmful, than we had believed.)…


Added by Mark J. Cotter on October 7, 2019 at 7:00am — No Comments

Judge, Jury and Executioner

The definition of the popular idiom, judge, jury and executioner, as told by Alea Roach is “if someone is said to be the judge, jury, and executioner, it means they are in charge of every decision made, and they have the power to be rid of whomever they choose.”  It seems that fire service is full of those who serve in the role of judge, jury and executioner via social media when it comes to tactics, fire scene videos, radio traffic, etc.  They brag about all the fires they go to and how…


Added by Brian Kazmierzak on October 4, 2019 at 1:49pm — No Comments

The Other Half - Implementing MFA Techniques

With the debate regarding the benefits of exterior streams and ventilation control having been settled in favor of at least adopting the option to perform these potentially faster, safer, and more effective approaches for controlling fires in structures, many fire service leaders and instructors are asking: “How can our department implement these valuable practices?” Fortunately, the most significant efforts toward making these changes have already been expended by…


Added by Mark J. Cotter on September 23, 2019 at 5:55am — No Comments

Fire Service Leadership: Redefining the “Culture of Safety”

        “An organization’s culture is made up of its folklore, its rituals, its group norms, and its meeting protocols. All of these cultural ingredients influence the organization’s adaptability. The culture of an organization is not usually written down or formally documented, but it still powerfully determines what is considered acceptable and unacceptable behavior” (Heifetz, Grashow, & Linsky, 2009). With fire service culture, you have two choices; you…


Added by Chris Langlois on September 22, 2019 at 2:00pm — No Comments

The Need for Resource-Based Emergency Response Systems

Across the country, in today’s fast paced world of emergency response systems, we as a community have evolved. But this evolution of response systems does not equally affect our community wholly which can cause problems when trying to coordinate response and mutual aid efforts. In some areas of the country, the morphing of response systems is quite progressive making every incident more likely to be mitigated rapidly by ensuring coverage areas are always protected and the quickest and most…


Added by Nathan Lindgren on September 19, 2019 at 8:10pm — No Comments

Take 30

There are 1,440 minutes in each day, let that sink in for a second.  Now obviously there needs to be time for work, for family, and for sleep.  Let’s try to make a realistic breakdown of the regular day.

  • 540: It takes roughly 540 minutes out of your day dedicated towards work (1440 - 540 =…

Added by Dave McGlynn on September 18, 2019 at 8:05pm — 1 Comment

Leadership Is Given Not Achieved

Much has been written about leadership. Everywhere you turn there are books, podcasts, blogs and so on about the subject. Please consider one more article about it, though.

Leadership is not something you do, it’s something you are given.

I would contend that no one becomes a leader. They are given leadership. I can read all the books or attend every seminar I want to on the subject and still not be a leader. I can have influence,…


Added by John Lightly on September 16, 2019 at 6:05am — No Comments


YOU matter more than you know!

Many national and local resources available, but here's a great start:


To see more Drawn By Fire cartoons or to purchase prints,…


Added by Paul Combs on September 9, 2019 at 3:47pm — No Comments

Half Ready - Limiting our options

Excellent firefighters are easy to spot: they’re usually doing something that will enhance their skills and knowledge. Though individual abilities will differ due to such variables as time in service, experience, and level of training, the consistent traits of the best firefighters are that they tirelessly study the trade, practice skills, and critique responses in order to better assist the citizens they are sworn to serve. This quality is readily apparent in their focus, attitude, and…


Added by Mark J. Cotter on September 9, 2019 at 6:21am — 3 Comments



STAY FIRED UP, and get to work!


To see more Drawn By Fire cartoons or to purchase prints, go to:…


Added by Paul Combs on September 6, 2019 at 7:29am — No Comments

Memorium, Honor, Celebration

In honor of September 11, 2001, this space is dedicated to:

  • The men, women, and children who lost their lives on September 11, 2001, and beyond as a result of that day.

  • The men and women who struggle to live today as a result of September 11, 2001.

  • The men, women, and rescue dogs that responded and worked tirelessly to save lives and to recover lives on September 11, 2001, and beyond. 

  • The men…

Added by Nick J. Salameh on September 5, 2019 at 10:53am — No Comments

Firefighter Relay Race

By: Blaize, FD Hacks

It's critical that firefighters operate with core competencies at 100%. We should be able to dress a hydrant with our eyes closed. Connecting and operating hose lines as a team should be well…


Added by Blaize on August 27, 2019 at 2:40pm — No Comments

Experiments vs. Experience: How a handful of test fires beats tons of real fires.

A frequent criticism of Modern Fire Attack (MFA) methods, often phrased as a warning against their adoption, is that the actual number of experimental fires upon which they are based totals only a few hundred, while Traditional (TFA?) tactics have been "proven" effective many thousands of times.  To be exact, I counted just 106 test fires performed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and Underwriters Laboratories (UL)…


Added by Mark J. Cotter on August 26, 2019 at 10:28am — 1 Comment

Medical Record Confidentiality - Protecting PHI

The fire service creates and manages a lot of records including personnel files, personnel medical records, inspection reports, personnel action forms (better known as discipline or corrective action), vacation requests and many others. Many of those records have some protection, a lot of protection or no protection subject to public disclosure laws.

One set of records with the highest level of protections are the…


Added by John K. Murphy on August 24, 2019 at 11:00am — No Comments

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