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National Fire News

Man who stabbed San Diego firefighters gets 23 years in prison

A man who stabbed two San Diego firefighters as they tried to render aid to an intoxicated person at a downtown trolley station was sentenced today to nearly 24 years in state prison. Ryan Allen Jones, 35, was convicted last month of two counts each of attempted voluntary manslaughter, assault with a deadly weapon and battery for the attack last June 24.
- PUB DATE: 4/25/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: KGTV ABC San Diego

Florida city spent $47,412 on investigation that reached no conclusions on claims against fired chief

An investigation into claims of misconduct against Steve McInerny that came to an abrupt end when he was fired as chief of the Naples Fire-Rescue Department cost taxpayers more than $47,000 and reached no conclusions. The internal review, conducted by a $245-an-hour lawyer, produced more than 700 pages of transcripts and other documents, which Mayor Bill Barnett said last week he hadn't yet read.
- PUB DATE: 4/25/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: naples daily news - metered site

Massachusetts firefighters seek ban on flame retardants

Amid growing concern that flame retardants are responsible for elevated cancer rates in firefighters, Massachusetts lawmakers are pushing legislation that would go further than any other state’s in banning the use of chemicals meant to slow the spread of fires. Fire officials and environmental advocates, who have joined forces to support the restrictions, contend that at least 10 chemicals used in flame retardants endanger firefighters, while doing little to stop fires.
- PUB DATE: 4/25/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: boston globe

Maryland Asst. Chief rescues woman from burning car

The Prince George's County Fire Department is applauding a veteran firefighter for his quick thinking, pulling a woman from a burning vehicle. When he saw smoke, PGFD Assistant Fire Chief Darren Ware stopped on the side of northbound Route 301 near Brandywine Road on Wednesday. Inside a burning car on the side of the road, he found a woman in the driver's seat.
- PUB DATE: 4/22/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WJLA-TV ABC 7 Washington

Body found believed to be missing Virginia firefighter

After six days of searching Shenandoah National Park, Virginia State police officers preliminarily believe they have found the body of Nicole Mittendorff. Search efforts for the missing Fairfax County firefighter were suspended Thursday after crews found female remains around 2 p.m. in a remote location more than a mile from the Whiteoak Canyon parking lot where Mittendorff's car was found Saturday.
- PUB DATE: 4/22/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: wusa9

In Need of More Volunteers, New York Fire Departments Are Turning to Women

Maggie Kuebler fought through pain as she wielded heavy power tools to free victims trapped in a mock vehicle accident, one of the many tests she underwent to become a volunteer firefighter. Her 5-foot-7, 150-pound frame shook with exhaustion, but she refused to quit. She knew that some day she could face real life-or-death situations, just as her father, a former Port Authority of New York and New Jersey police officer whose life of service she wanted to emulate, had.
- PUB DATE: 4/22/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: new york times

Embattled Maine fire chief fired after week on paid leave

Nearly a week after being placed on administrative leave for the second time in three years, the town’s fire chief has been fired. Mike Spencer was terminated as chief on Wednesday, Town Manager Paul White confirmed on Thursday. White declined to comment on the reason for the termination, whether an interim fire chief has been appointed and if the town planned to conduct a search for a new chief.
- PUB DATE: 4/22/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: bangor daily news

Rash of injuries in fighting fires prompts review for Rhode Island department

A rash of firefighter injuries over the past month, including 26 injuries sustained at two wind-fueled blazes on March 31, prompted a city administration investigation into the contributing factors. Public Safety Commissioner Steven M. Pare said officials, are concerned about the number of firefighters injured — more than two dozen — at three burning houses on Eaton Street near Providence College and two houses on Laurel Hill Avenue.
- PUB DATE: 4/22/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: providence journal

Ambulance slams into overpass, killing driver and patient in New York

PHOTO - An ambulance that was transporting a person to the hospital lost control Wednesday and smashed into an overpass on the Southern State Parkway — killing both the driver and the patient, cops said. The privately owned Hunter EMS vehicle was heading eastbound on the Long Island highway when it veered off the road and slammed into a brick wall at Eagle Avenue near Exit 18, just after 12 p.
- PUB DATE: 4/21/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: new york post

Fired Florida chief: Some council members defamed him, denied him legal rights

Before he was fired last month, Naples Fire Chief Steve McInerny argued that several members of the City Council defamed him and denied him his legal rights, according to a Feb. 9 letter sent by his lawyer. The lawyer, Robert Bates, sent the letter to Naples City Attorney Bob Pritt indicating McInerny wanted to settle his disputes with the city five weeks before McInerny was fired on March 15.
- PUB DATE: 4/21/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: naples daily news

Chicago Deputy Commissioner Resigns Position After Crash

A high-ranking Chicago Fire Department official has resigned his command position after he was in a traffic accident early Wednesday with his city-issued vehicle on North Lake Shore Drive, a department spokesman said. Chicago Fire Department Deputy Commissioner John McNicholas was “operating his city vehicle outside department policy” when it crashed sometime during the early morning hours near Lake Shore Drive and North Avenue, said spokesman Larry Langford.
- PUB DATE: 4/21/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: firehouse

Oklahoma fire chief says firefighter who killed himself after police chase was ‘one of our best guys’

A Hugo, Oklahoma firefighter, who led law enforcement on a chase that ended in a standoff and who took his own life in Savoy Monday afternoon, was said to have lived a life opposite of his final actions. “It’s not anything you expect at all with a guy of his capabilities,” Hugo Fire Chief Ron Cloud said.
- PUB DATE: 4/21/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: herald democrat

Orlando firefighters exposed to high levels of asbestos

Some Orlando firefighters were exposed to high levels of cancer-causing asbestos, according to a report. Environmental Protection officials started investigating in February and said they found 27 pieces of equipment had high levels of asbestos contamination. They tested 93 pieces of gear, including clothing.
- PUB DATE: 4/21/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WFTV-TV ABC 9 Orlando

Board backs tougher penalties in Cal Fire training scandal

California's firefighting agency can twice demote three state firefighters who cheated to get jobs and promotions at a training academy that was rocked by an ethics scandal, a state appeals board said in a decision made public Tuesday. The State Personnel Board backed an administrative law judge's decision that the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection has the authority to impose tougher penalties than were originally sought against the three.
- PUB DATE: 4/20/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: KCRA-TV NBC 3 Sacramento

Connecticut Firefighter Receives 2016 Ray Downey Courage and Valor Award

Firefighter Jason Rivera, an 18-year veteran of the fire service and a member of the New Haven (CT) Fire Department, was awarded the 2016 Ray Downey Courage & Valor Award at Wednesday’s Opening Session. Robert Biolchini, chairman of the board, PennWell Corp., presented the award. Fire Department of New York Battalion Chiefs Joe and Chuck Downey, sons of Ray Downey; Ron Siarnicki, executive director, National Fallen Firefighter Foundation; Chief Ron Kanterman, National Fire Academy Alumni Association; and Bobby Halton, Fire Engineering editor in chief / FDIC education director, also members of the Selection Committee, participated in the ceremony.
- PUB DATE: 4/20/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: fire engineering

Florida firefighter critical after aiding stabbed woman

When Orange City firefighter-paramedic Caroline Dorton heard a woman had been stabbed in the parking lot of the Chili's restaurant where she was eating in Lake Mary on Sunday, she did what came naturally. Dorton rushed outside to help. But the stabbed woman's husband returned. He saw Dorton and another person trying to help his bleeding wife and ran them over, police said.
- PUB DATE: 4/20/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: the daytona beach news-journal

South Carolina firefighters face venomous snakes at home during blaze

Firefighters trying to save a burning home walked into something they say they have never seen before, a garage full of dozens of snakes, many of them venomous. There was nothing firefighters could do to save the snakes and the family not only lost their pets, but also their home on Silver Leaf Circle in James Island.
- PUB DATE: 4/20/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WCBD-TV Charleston 2

Higher Education Under Fire

We all know that you don’t need an advanced degree to pull ceiling. So why are departments placing a greater emphasis on higher education and advanced degrees these days, particularly when the process of getting a degree can be expensive and time-consuming? Firefighting is a dangerous, difficult and inherently risky job.
- PUB DATE: 4/20/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: firehouse

RI female firefighter awarded $800K in sexual harrassment suit

Retired Providence Fire Lt. Lori Franchina was awarded more than $800,000 by a Federal jury Monday, after jurors found she endured both sexual harassment and retaliation while on the job. Jurors deliberated less than four hours before reaching their decision, which included $100,000 in punitive damages.
- PUB DATE: 4/19/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WJAR-TV NBC 10 Providence

North Carolina mayor, fire dept. resign during town council meeting

The Norwood Fire Department stunned its Town Council Monday night with firefighters announcing their resignations. Fed up with rumors and innuendos that the Norwood Town Council wanted to eliminate the town’s fire department in favor of contracting fire services with the Center Rural Volunteer Fire Department, all of the department’s officials quit, according to Mayor Beverly Johnson.
- PUB DATE: 4/19/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: the stanly news and press