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National Fire News

Connecticut fire chief dies in rollover crash

Residents and town officials in East Granby are mourning the loss of Fire Chief Peter Ahlstrin, who died in a crash along Route 20 in Windsor Thursday night. At approximately 10:40 p.m. Thursday, State Police responded to Route 20 near the Hamilton Road South exit on a report of a crash. Upon arrival, troopers discovered that a vehicle being driven by 28-year-old Ahlstrin, had struck a wire rope guard rail on the right shoulder of the roadway, then rolled down an embankment.
- PUB DATE: 7/15/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WTNH-TV ABC 8 New Haven

Man indicted on gun charges related to shooting death of Maryland firefighter

The Temple Hills homeowner who prosecutors say shot and killed a Prince George’s County firefighter and injured a second in April will not face a murder charge, state’s attorney Angela Alsobrooks announced Thursday. Instead, Darrell Lumpkin, 61, has been indicted on six counts related to illegal possession of firearms.
- PUB DATE: 7/15/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WTOP-AM 1500 Washington

Homeowner Sued For $25 Million Over California Wildfire

The federal government sued a homeowner for nearly $25 million on Thursday, contending his negligence sparked a 2013 fire in the mountains east of Los Angeles that forced 5,000 people from their homes. The lawsuit says that a short in a poorly maintained electrical junction box sparked a blaze in the San Jacinto Mountains above Palm Springs that charred more than 27,500 acres of brush and timber — about 43 square miles — and at one point threatened the town of Idyllwild.
- PUB DATE: 7/15/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: KCAL-TV Los Angeles

NFPA talks with keeper of 'The Secret List'

The 1980’s cartoon series “G.I. Joe” ended each episode with an often corny and sometimes salient lesson, always following roughly the same script: A few adolescents get an oafish idea, like jumping their bikes over a downed sparking electrical wire, when a prominent member of the Joe squad materializes to explain their error in judgment.
- PUB DATE: 7/15/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: NFPA Journal

Why fire service data matters

Let me get this fact out of the way: I love sports. In fact, there aren't many sports that I don't follow. And, when there is a chance of a record being broken or a milestone achieved, it certainly has my attention. Why is it that we cheer on horses who have a chance to win the Triple Crown? Why is it we enjoy a pitcher throwing a perfect game, a hockey player completing the hat trick or a golfer winning all four majors? It's because there are levels of excellence that spectators and fans like to see people and teams accomplish.
- PUB DATE: 7/15/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: firerescue1

Illinois fire lieutenant dies after medical event during training

Freeport Rural Fire Department Lt. Eric Kohlbauer died Tuesday after an apparent medical emergency arose while he prepared to train with pumper and tank equipment, Fire Chief Mike Wichman said. Stephenson County Coroner Tom Leamon said an autopsy performed this morning confirmed Kohlbauer died of a heart-related medical problem.
- PUB DATE: 7/14/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Rockford Register Star

Disney firefighters were warned to stop feeding alligators 2 months before deadly attack on toddler

Two months before an alligator killed a toddler at Walt Disney World, firefighters were warned to stop feeding the reptiles at one of the resort's fire stations.The admonitions were in emails from employees at Reedy Creek Emergency Services. Reedy Creek is the Disney-controlled taxing district that provides government services to the theme parks and surrounding areas.
- PUB DATE: 7/14/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: sun-sentinel

Should New Jersey firefighter be fired because he is a medical marijuana patient?

An Ocean City firefighter who may lose his job for being a registered medical marijuana patient cannot proceed with a lawsuit against the city until he undergoes a departmental hearing, a state judge has ruled. If the case makes its way to court, it would likely to be the first of its kind in the state involving the legality of a pubic safety employee's use of medical marijuana.
- PUB DATE: 7/14/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Newark Star-Ledger

Utah lawmakers vote to allow authorities to disable drones near wildfires

Utah authorities likely will be among the first in the nation to be allowed to disable and crash drones for flying too close to wildfires after lawmakers approved legislation Wednesday. The governor is expected to sign the measure in the coming days. Lawmakers voted during a special session after at least one unmanned aircraft has plagued firefighters recently in the southern part of the state.
- PUB DATE: 7/14/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: KSL-TV NBC 5

New Seattle medical clinic focused only on treating firefighters

VIDEO- A new primary care clinic focused on treating Seattle firefighters is set to open this week. The clinic will be run by Qliance, a Seattle-based membership-based company, and will be located above Seattle’s Fire Station 2 in Belltown. The International Association of Fire Fighters cites studies showing firefighters face a high risk for heart disease, cancer, chronic respiratory disease, hepatitis and stress.
- PUB DATE: 7/14/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Northwest Cable News

Wisconsin Assistant Fire Chief Killed in Flooding

Two men were killed when torrential rains flooded eight northern Wisconsin counties Monday night and Tuesday. In Iron County, the Sheriff's Department said Mitch Koski, 56, of Montreal, Wis., died in the flooding. Koski served as Montreal Assistant Fire Chief and was a former mayor of Montreal, a city of about 800 near Hurley.
- PUB DATE: 7/13/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

San Francisco to pay $5 million to man hit by suspected drunk firefighter

The San Francisco city attorney’s office agreed to pay nearly $5 million to a motorcyclist who was badly injured in 2013 when he was struck by a fire truck driven by a city firefighter suspected of being drunk on the job, officials said Tuesday. The motorcyclist, 53-year-old Jack Frazier, sued the city on Oct.
- PUB DATE: 7/13/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: sfgate.com - metered site

Fire Department plays 'Russian Roulette' when taking engines off duty, New Jersey chief says

Leaders of the city's fire department feel they're playing a game of Russian Roulette when choosing which engine companies should be taken out of service during staff shortages, Fire Chief Darren Rivers said. Rivers' rare public admonishment of the administration was joined by Freeholder Bill O'Dea at a public safety meeting at the Mary McLeod Bethune Life Center on Monday night, where Rivers said he went to "address the issue of closing firehouses.
- PUB DATE: 7/13/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Newark Star-Ledger/NJ.com

Is Deleting Public Comments on a Fire Department Facebook Page Government Censorship?

Today’s burning question: Can we delete comments that we find offensive on our fire department’s Facebook page? Answer: That question is actually a heck of a lot more complicated than you might imagine… just ask the City of Beech Grove, Indiana. The city is facing a federal lawsuit filed by the ACLU of Indiana on behalf of two women who claim that their posts on the Beech Grove Police Department’s Facebook page as well as the city’s Facebook page have been deleted and the women blocked from making further posts.
- PUB DATE: 7/13/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Curt Varone fire law blog

Several New York fire departments warn Pokemon GO gamers

Attention, Pokemon gamers: If the new Pokemon GO app tells you to go to a local fire station, government compound or even the middle of the road for a "Poke Stop," don't go there. Several Central New York fire and police departments are warning gamers not to try to "catch monsters" on their property, for the safety of both emergency crews and the public.
- PUB DATE: 7/13/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Syracuse Post-Standard

Delaware firefighter falls from helicopter to his death

A Delaware firefighter has died after falling from a helicopter during a training exercise with the Delaware Air Rescue Team. Police identified the firefighter Tuesday morning as Tim McClanahan, 46, of Lewes. The incident occurred while a Delaware State Police aviation unit was conducting monthly "hoist training" with DART at the Delaware Coastal Airport in Georgetown Monday night.
- PUB DATE: 7/12/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Wilmington News Journal (Delaware Online)

National fire organizations decry Dallas shootings, issue warning to first responders and offer resources in wake of targeted shootings

The International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), Metropolitan Fire Chiefs (Metro Chiefs), National Association of State Fire Marshals (NASFM), National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) and the United States Fire Administration (USFA) join together to condemn the tragic events in Dallas, Texas, that took the lives of five career police officers.
- PUB DATE: 7/12/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: National Fire Protection Association

D.C. EMS Department Considering Uber for Transporting Some 911 Callers

As the D.C. Fire and EMS Department handles a growing number of 911 calls, officials are examining whether taxis or Uber drivers' cars could be used to transport callers who do no have true emergencies. D.C FEMS Chief Gregory Dean told News4 on Monday that the department and other D.C. officials are considering adding nurses to the 911 call center to evaluate medical needs and using vehicles other than ambulances to transport people who need to go to a doctor's office -- but not to an emergency room.
- PUB DATE: 7/12/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: nbc washington

Is the fire service biased against diversity?

Recently I was chatting with several public safety women regarding the lack of sufficient numbers of women in firefighting and law enforcement. A number of us who have been in the public safety arena for many years expressed frustration over a common piece of advice that we hear from many inside public safety and public management: "Don't worry.
- PUB DATE: 7/12/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: firechief.com

South Carolina fire captain sacked for threats against protesters

A 16-year Columbia Fire Department captain was fired Monday from his $53,722-a-year job for making threatening remarks against people in a Black Lives Matter protest that on Sunday night closed down a major interstate corridor into Columbia, city officials said Monday. On Sunday night, in apparent reaction to a S.
- PUB DATE: 7/12/2016 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: the state