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The firehouse and training grounds are very fun places to be. Lighthearted jokes and razzing are the norm - and quite honestly a very healthy behavior. Good-natured poking and prodding creates friendships, camaraderie, trust, and some of the best nicknames in the fire service. However, when good-natured fun turns to hazing, you need to step in and stop the practice immediately. NOTHING good comes from the unnecessary abuse and ridicule that has ruined many fire service careers - for both the offender and offended! If someone needs to humiliate and demean others to make themselves feel strong and empowered, then they're in the wrong profession! Worse are those who stand by and watch, or laugh, knowing it's wrong and do nothing to stop it. Have the courage to stop this as it's happening!

Keep training, in training - keep it real!

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Comment by Ed Harvey on January 27, 2012 at 2:05pm

Great commentary by Mr. Combs! We certainly need to training as we work (play?). We need to treat others the way we'd expect to be treated, not necessarily how we were treated. We also need to have some fun doing it, the other night the Asst. Chief wanted a few folks to wash the trucks and the rest to do SCBA drills. I was asked if the folks washing the trucks could do both I said sure - they washed both engines and only used half a tank of air. The other crew did some search drills and still had half a tank left so I grabbed an eight pound medicine ball from our workout room brought both crews together and we played "hot potato" it was a friendly, fun, competitive way to get the firefighters to be active and concentrate on conserving their air supply. It was a blast, and not demeaning in the least. Our people are our greatest asset, they should be treated as such.

Comment by Art "Chief Reason" Goodrich on January 26, 2012 at 7:19pm

I trust he's wearing a Nomex Kevlar puppy suit?

He's got the pipe; the perfect anti-hazing tool!

Comment by Paul Combs on January 26, 2012 at 6:06pm

Perfect place, Jim!! LOL!

Comment by Jim Duffy on January 26, 2012 at 5:59pm

Hanging in Officers head as of Tomorrow

Comment by Paul Combs on January 26, 2012 at 3:59pm

"...hazing is for MUTTS." - I love that!!!! Thanks, Boss!

Comment by Bobby Halton on January 26, 2012 at 3:50pm

Paul, as always you get it, training and hazing are completely incompatable. Hazing in general is a bad idea and should be confined to Frat houses and other social institutions, not our house. Jokes are wonderful and humor is critical but hazing is for MUTTS.

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