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National Fire News

Mississippi firefighter killed in crash responding to fire

The cold and rainy night on Sunday seemed fitting in the town of Magee, given the sad and mournful emotion felt throughout the community, since Saturday's accident which killed 34-year-old volunteer firefighter Dustin Grubbs, while on his way to fight a structure fire. Black ribbons are seen adorned all along the outside the Magee Fire Dept.
- PUB DATE: 11/5/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WJTV Jackson

Retired Atlanta fire chief picked to lead Austin Fire Department

Austin City Manager Spencer Cronk has selected retired Atlanta Fire Chief Joel Baker to be the next head of the Austin Fire Department, replacing former Fire Chief Rhoda Mae Kerr, who retired this summer. Baker was selected from a pool of 84 candidates, who included finalists Laredo Fire Chief Steve Landin and Fire Chief Kevin McGee of Prince William County, Va.
- PUB DATE: 11/5/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Austin American-Statesman

California Fire Captain Dies After Being Struck by Suspected DUI Driver While Cycling

A Costa Mesa fire captain who was struck and critically injured in a crash involving a suspected DUI driver while cycling over the weekend has died, officials announced Monday. Costa Mesa Fire and Rescue Capt. Mike Kreza with was riding a bicycle shortly after 8 a.m. Saturday on Alicia Parkway near Via Burgos in Mission Viejo when he was struck by the driver of a van.
- PUB DATE: 11/5/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: KTLA-TV WB 5 Los Angeles

Pennsylvania Driver Fined for Running over Hose

The motorist who ran over a fire hose at the scene of an Oct. 23 house fire in Geistown is on the hook to pay for any damage to the hose and faces a fine of up to $300, authorities said. Fire broke out at 6 a.m. in the 200 block of Karen Way. A 4-inch, cotton sleeve, large-diameter hose was connected to a hydrant and laid across the road when a man driving an SUV ran over the hose.
- PUB DATE: 11/5/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Firehouse

Georgia firefighters group raises concerns about safety

The Augusta Fire Department has been sent at least three letters of complaint from the local firefighters association stating concerns about safety. The letters by the Augusta Professional Firefighters Association Local 3357 have been sent since Sept. 21. An additional letter was sent by the International Association of Fire Fighters complaining about the way the city of Augusta has attempted to suppress the organization’s voice.
- PUB DATE: 11/5/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Augusta Chronicle

Warrant: Gas line that caused explosion killing Wisconsin firefighter wasn't correctly marked

A contractor that specializes in locating and marking underground utilities to prevent accidents failed to properly mark a natural gas line that was struck by a communications construction firm, which led to a massive explosion in downtown Sun Prairie in July that killed a fire department captain, according to a search warrant unsealed in Dane County Circuit Court.
- PUB DATE: 11/2/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Wisconsin State Journal

With demotion pending, Ohio assistant fire chief weighs in on changes at fire department

She’ll make less money and will have to report to a new person in a high-ranking job she previously held, but Toledo fire Chief Brian Byrd said Karen Marquardt’s bump from assistant chief to battalion chief isn’t a demotion. Regardless of how it’s characterized, Assistant Chief Marquardt’s pending move down to a lower rank means there are no women left in the Toledo Fire & Rescue Department’s top five positions.
- PUB DATE: 11/2/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Toledo Blade

U.S. Department of Commerce Announces Six Leadership Appointments to Board of FirstNet First Responder Network Authority

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced the appointment of six leaders in public safety, technology and network financing to serve on the Board of the FirstNet First Responder Network Authority. The new members bring the FirstNet board to a full complement, with 12 non-permanent members selected by the Commerce Department and three permanent seats filled by the Attorney General, the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Director of the Office of Management and Budget.
- PUB DATE: 11/2/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Commerce.Gov

Las Vegas firefighter claims coworkers shared explicit video

A sexually explicit video of a Las Vegas firefighter was circulated among her coworkers without her knowledge, according to a human resources complaint obtained by the Las Vegas Review-Journal. The woman learned in June that her colleagues had the video, according to the complaint. She said in the complaint that the video was sent last year to her ex-boyfriend, a Henderson firefighter.
- PUB DATE: 11/2/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Las Vegas Review-Journal

Illinois firefighters speak out against proposed cuts

The call load for firefighters has tripled and variety of their training and responsibilities has significantly expanded in the last few decades, while the personnel population at the Peoria Fire Department has remained relatively flat. Those factors, combined with the continued dwindling of tax revenue flowing into city coffers, create a stark reality, according to the president of the local firefighters union, Ryan Brady.
- PUB DATE: 11/2/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Peoria Journal Star

Pipeline peril: Natural gas explosions reveal silent danger lurking in old cast-iron pipes

The cast-iron natural gas main that served Dr. Richard Williams' turn-of-the-century home in this Southern college town was as old as the house itself: It was built during Shreveport's first gas-fueled boom in 1911. When that pipeline cracked in 2016, the gas built up slowly and silently in a shed behind Williams' home.
- PUB DATE: 11/1/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: USA Today

Once a plague of arson, Detroit's Devil's Night now just an ember

For decades, Devil's Night in Detroit was a horror story -- a night when arsonists ran amok, and when homeowners stood on their lawns with garden hoses running while the city reeled amid hundreds of fires that firefighters couldn't douse. Now? The plague of arson seems to be over. As trick-or-treaters made the rounds Wednesday night, Detroit Fire Commissioner Eric Jones released a statement about Devil's Night at the Free Press' request.
- PUB DATE: 11/1/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Detroit Free Press

Video: Verizon Pressed By California Officials Over Throttling Firefighters Data During Wildfire

The Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors held a special meeting to get answers from Verizon about fire crews getting their data speeds throttled as they battled the Mendocino Complex Fire over the summer. Santa Clara Fire Chief Tony Bowden and Verizon representatives gave status reports at the meeting.
- PUB DATE: 11/1/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: KPIX-TV CBS 5 San Francisco

New York Court: Fire commission has authority to dissolve

The Otsego County Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Town of Oneonta Fire District Board of Commissioners on Oct. 31, dismissing the requested injunction by the Town of Oneonta. The Fire Commission may now proceed with its dissolution Friday, Nov. 2 as planned. The Commission voted to dissolve in September following more than a year of stalled budget negotiations between the town, commission and city.
- PUB DATE: 11/1/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Oneonta Daily Star

San Francisco paramedic, police officer lose jobs after alleged assault on ambulance patient

A San Francisco paramedic and a police officer have lost their jobs after an alleged assault last year on a woman who was restrained in the back of an ambulance on an involuntary mental health hold, officials said Wednesday. The paramedic, Raymond Lee, resigned from the San Francisco Fire Department on Friday after being criminally charged earlier this year for allegedly grabbing the victim’s throat while she was restrained and sedated, officials said.
- PUB DATE: 11/1/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: San Francisco Chronicle

Southern California Edison Says Equipment Played Role In Thomas Fire

Southern California Edison said Tuesday its equipment likely sparked one of two ignition points for the massive wildfire that tore through California’s central coast last year. Witnesses reported flames near the company’s power poles in Ventura County last December and the utility “believes that its equipment was associated with this ignition,” Edison said.
- PUB DATE: 10/31/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: KOVR-TV CBS Sacramento

Massachusetts fire chief recounts day of gas fires, explosions

When, in the afternoon of Sept. 13, Lawrence Fire Chief Brian Moriarty first got the call about house explosions and fires across the south side of his city, he was driving back up to the Merrimack Valley from Boston after taking an emergency medical service class, hoping to meet a few guys after work.
- PUB DATE: 10/31/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Lawrence Eagle Tribune

Chicago officials demand more frequent firefighter entrance exams to diversify fire department

The Chicago Police Department has been holding frequent entrance exams — in May and June of this year with a third coming up in December — as it wraps up a two-year hiring surge to add 970 additional officers over and above attrition. But the Chicago Fire Department is a different story. There was a firefighters entrance exam in 2014.
- PUB DATE: 10/31/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Chicago Sun-Times

‘Paranormal 911’: How a team of responders are taking on the supernatural

Have you ever thought of being a first responder for the supernatural? Mary Barrett and her husband, Sean, a 33-year veteran of the Indianapolis Fire Department, launched Paranormal 911 in 2009 after being inspired by an evening of ghost touring. The couple now leads a team mainly consisting of firefighters, EMS providers and police officers on ghost investigation adventures, and has even gained national attention on the A&E show, “My Ghost Story.
- PUB DATE: 10/31/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: FireRescue1

Maine firefighters hit power line with new $1.1M ladder truck, setting it on fire

Three South Portland firefighters were training with a new $1.1 million ladder truck Tuesday morning when they accidentally hit a power line with the truck’s aerial, according to a statement released by City Manager Scott Morrelli Tuesday night. The contact with the electrical line caused a fire to the truck’s front right tire and shorted the controls of the aerial, keeping the firefighters from moving the extendable ladder away from the line, Morrelli said.
- PUB DATE: 10/31/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Bangor Daily News