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National Fire News

Fallen Massachusetts Firefighter's Ladder 4 gets prepped for funeral services

For years, they’ve watched from across the street as the trucks go in and out of the Park Avenue fire station, protecting the city and its residents. Now Harris Auto Body is returning the favor, giving two fire trucks a final detailing in preparation for Firefighter Christopher J. Roy’s funeral services.
- PUB DATE: 12/14/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Worcester Telegram & Gazette

911 call logs reveal terrifying moments at onset of Camp Fire

At 6:33 a.m. on Nov. 8, a Butte County dispatcher answered what was among the first emergency calls in what would become the deadliest wildfire in California history: A “powerline transformer sparked and there is a fire,” the Magalia caller reported. By just after 8 a.m., residents of Concow and Magalia were phoning in a panic — some of them trapped and needing rescue and others frantically alerting authorities to parents and grandparents in harm’s way, according to Butte County dispatchers’ logs.
- PUB DATE: 12/14/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: San Francisco Chronicle

Baltimore County fire chief to retire

Two more top Baltimore County officials are leaving as County Executive Johnny Olszewski Jr. sets up his new administration. Fire Chief Kyrle Preis and planning director Andrea van Arsdale announced this week that they are retiring. They were two of the department heads who were not included in a list of appointments and reappointments that Olszewski sent to the Baltimore County Council last week.
- PUB DATE: 12/14/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Baltimore Sun

3 simple ways to avoid a fire department PR nightmare

Southwest Airlines recently found itself in hot water and had to apologize for the actions of one of its employees. That person, a gate agent, had joked with coworkers about the unusual name of one of the passengers on the flight, and later posted a picture of that passenger’s boarding pass to her personal social media account.
- PUB DATE: 12/14/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: FireRescue1

City of Houston files legal brief claiming fire pay parity amendment unconstitutional

The city of Houston has alleged in a legal claim that the voter-approved charter amendment granting firefighters equal pay to police officers is unconstitutional and preempted by Texas’ local government code, echoing a similar contention from the Houston Police Officers’ Union. The claim, filed in state district court as part of the police union’s lawsuit against the Houston Professional Fire Firefighters Association and the city, comes 10 days after a judge issued a temporary restraining order blocking implementation of Proposition B, which passed with 59 percent of the vote last month.
- PUB DATE: 12/14/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Houston Chronicle

7 FDNY firefighters, 5 civilians hurt as massive fire tears through Queens businesses

At least 12 people are recovering from injuries after a massive fire burned through several businesses in Sunnyside, Queens. The fire broke out inside one store on Queens Boulevard around 2:14 a.m. Thursday and quickly spread. Dozens of firefighters were called to the scene as the fire grew to five alarms.
- PUB DATE: 12/13/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WABC-TV ABC 7

Texas city council to consider making 4-person crew rule mandatory for fire calls

Austin City Council members on Thursday will consider an ordinance that would require most of the city’s fire vehicles to be staffed with a minimum of four people, a move decades in the making that supporters say will improve safety and efficiency at the Fire Department. The ordinance would essentially bring into law a policy that the Fire Department has already been implementing to make sure that first responders are able to act immediately during a critical fire incident.
- PUB DATE: 12/13/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Austin American-Statesman

Ghost Ship defendants ask for arrest of landlord, fire officials for deadly California blaze

The attorneys for the Ghost Ship defendants are asking the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office for an unusual move — to arrest the warehouse landlords and fire department officials for the deadly fire. Attorneys for Derick Almena and Max Harris announced the motion to compel the arrests on Tuesday, asking for a laundry list of arrests that includes the Ghost Ship warehouse landlord Chor Ng and her two children, Eva and Kai, who served as building managers.
- PUB DATE: 12/13/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: East Bay Times

Councilman demands independent probe on FDNY chief suspended over abusive behavior accusations

The head of the city council's investigations committee has requested an independent probe of the events leading up to the suspension of a top Fire Department chief accused of abusive behavior. Councilman Ritchie Torres, (D-Bronx), sent Department of Investigation Commissioner Margaret Garnett the request Tuesday, days after FDNY Chief of Department James Leonard was relieved of his command and put on desk duty.
- PUB DATE: 12/13/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: New York Daily News

How suburban Illinois fire chiefs collect both pensions and paychecks

Mitch Crocetti's job pays pretty well, but his old job pays him even better. The Pingree Grove & Countryside Fire Protection District chief receives $117,500 a year in his current role, but his pension after his previous 30-year career with the Wood Dale Fire Department also pays him $124,037 annually.
- PUB DATE: 12/13/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Illinois Daily Herald

North Carolina firefighters and family dodge death after explosive tractor-trailer crash, then woman pulls a gun

On Monday night, firefighters rushed to rescue a family stranded on a highway before a tractor-trailer smashed into their vehicles causing an explosion. In a bizarre incident later that night, the passenger of a car who drove through the barricade during clean-up waved a gun and ran into a firefighter.
- PUB DATE: 12/12/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WECT-TV Channel 6

Connecticut city's firefighters win injunction against statewide union

A Connecticut Superior Court judge has ruled in favor of a local firefighters union saying it effectively disaffiliated in 2016 from the Uniformed Professional Firefighters Association of Connecticut. The city firefighters’ union, Local 825, filed a four-count lawsuit in March alleging a breach of fiduciary duty against the UPFFA, which represents the state’s fire departments.
- PUB DATE: 12/12/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Greenwich Time

2019 Fire Service Executive Development Institute Participants Selected

The International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) today announced the participants accepted into the seventh-year of the prestigious Fire Service Executive Development Institute (FSEDI). FSEDI is a yearlong leadership-development program developed by the IAFC to provide new and aspiring chiefs with the tools they need to have successful and productive tenures.
- PUB DATE: 12/12/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: International Association of Fire Chiefs

Florida firefighter used 'Magical Butter' machine to make cannabis oil in a fire station, deputies say

The Magical Butter Botanical Extractor is a mechanical device which looks similar to a coffee thermos and is marketed as a tool to infuse food with your favorite herbs. Sheriff's officials say a Hillsborough County firefighter used one to create homemade cannabis oil. Deputies were called Monday afternoon to Hillsborough Fire Station 26, a small public safety house at 5302 Thonotosassa Road, after someone found a Magical Butter machine in the workout room with marijuana in it.
- PUB DATE: 12/12/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Tampa Bay Times and Tampa Bay.com

Retiring Cal Fire chief: State must adapt to new wildfire norm

California's increasingly deadly and destructive wildfires have become so unpredictable that government officials should consider banning home construction in vulnerable areas, the state's top firefighter says. Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Director Ken Pimlott will leave his job Friday after 30 years with the agency.
- PUB DATE: 12/12/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Santa Rosa Press Democrat

Rising concern for Minnesota firefighters: Calling 911 for help standing up

Firefighters across Minnesota are increasingly responding to 911 calls to lift elderly people off the floor, even at some senior care facilities with their own staff. More than 7,100 times last year, fire departments across the state were dispatched to assist frail but uninjured people, a nearly threefold increase from a decade prior.
- PUB DATE: 12/11/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune

New Hampshire firefighters hurt in backdraft explosion re-entered burning building

Four Manchester firefighters injured while battling a fire Sunday afternoon went back into the Seventh Avenue home to continue the firefight. They were also back on the job on Monday. “You're right next to each other but you can't see each other,” Capt. Pete Franggos, of the Manchester Fire Department, said.
- PUB DATE: 12/11/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WMUR-TV ABC 9 Manchester

Pennsylvania firefighter arrested after town votes to disband volunteer fire department

VIDEO - The Pitcairn Council voted Monday night to disband the #2 Volunteer Fire Department during a heated meeting. The borough currently has two separate volunteer fire departments, but the #2 Department will be disbanded at the end of the year. After the decision was announced, there was an altercation between several people that ended with one firefighter being shocked with a Taser and arrested by police.
- PUB DATE: 12/11/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WPXI-TV NBC 11 Pittsburgh

Don’t confuse Uncle Sam with Santa Claus when applying for grants

The song lyrics say, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.” So maybe it’s an appropriate time to talk about grant seekers that confuse Uncle Sam, the personification of the American government, with Santa Claus. He gives presents and fulfils requests for those who deserve them. How many times have we heard someone say, “Oh don’t worry about how much it costs it’s a grant application.
- PUB DATE: 12/11/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: FireRescue 1

Suspect arrested in road-rage killing of FDNY firefighter

Police have arrested a suspect in connection with the road-rage death of an off-duty firefighter on a Brooklyn highway, law enforcement sources told The Post. Joseph Desmond, 29, was tracked down by the NYPD and US marshals at the Circle Motor Lodge in South Amboy, NJ, where he was arrested for a parole violation, the sources said.
- PUB DATE: 12/11/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: New York Post