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National Fire News

As Pennsylvania firefighters injured in fatal collapse recover, one asks: 'Why them, not me?'

Not long after Greg Altland was promoted to assistant fire chief, commanding a shift of firefighters in York City's fire department, he found himself standing on Texas Avenue at the top of a hill at the city's north end. From that vantage point, he could see much of the city. At night, it's a beautiful view, the lights like stars, the universe being the 5.
- PUB DATE: 4/2/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: KCEN TV

Embattled California fire marshal criticized over deadly Ghost Ship fire resigns

After more than a year of intense criticism following two deadly fires, Oakland Fire Marshal Miguel Trujillo resigned Friday, marking another major shift at the top of the city’s embattled fire department. Trujillo is leaving to become the fire marshal for the Gilroy Fire Department, city spokeswoman Karen Boyd said Friday.
- PUB DATE: 4/2/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: East Bay Times

3 dead in Illinois ambulance crash

Three people are dead after an ambulance crash in west suburban Bellwood. The ambulance was transporting 48-year-old Larry Marshall Jr. home from dialysis treatment when police say the driver apparently lost control of the ambulance around 3:45 p.m. Saturday and slammed into a building at 28th Avenue and Washington Boulevard.
- PUB DATE: 4/2/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WLS-TV ABC 7 Chicago

Disabled or broken hydrants challenge Michigan firefighters at fatal trailer fire

There were challenges getting water Saturday morning to a trailer fire that killed one and injured a firefighter in a mobile home park off McDevitt Avenue in Summit Township. Firefighters tried four hydrants within the park, which maintains its own system, and they were broken or disabled, township fire Acting Lt.
- PUB DATE: 4/2/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Mlive.com

Los Angeles firefighters find 13-year-old boy alive after extensive search of sewage pipe

More than 12 hours of painstaking and methodical searching paid off for firefighters today when they found a 13-year-old boy who fell 25 feet into a sewage pipe in Griffith Park “alive and talking.” Los Angeles Fire Department Capt. Erik Scott made the announcement at 5:41 a.m. “We have found Jesse Hernandez,” he said.
- PUB DATE: 4/2/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Los Angeles Daily News

North Carolina fire chief named head of Charleston, S.C. Fire Department

After vetting more than 100 applicants in the past year, the city of Charleston has announced who will take the helm of the fire department. The city released a statement Thursday that Daniel Curia, fire chief in Durham, N.C., has accepted the job as chief of the Charleston Fire Department. Curia will speak at a press conference at 1:30 p.
- PUB DATE: 3/30/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Charleston Post and Courer

California fire authority broke protocol in small, delayed Canyon 2 wildfire response, probe finds

The Orange County Fire Authority broke department protocols in its response to the Canyon 2 Fire by not deploying enough equipment after receiving early reports of flames, an independent investigation has determined. The report bolsters concerns that a bungled response might have allowed a small blaze to grow into the county’s most destructive wildfire in at least a decade.
- PUB DATE: 3/30/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Orange County Register

New Hampshire Senate cuts funding source for firefighter cancer benefits bill

A Senate bill to pay for firefighter cancer benefits was sent to the House after being stripped of its funding source last week, but the governor and bill’s sponsor believe the legislation could still result in the benefits being funded. SB 541, which would have used a surcharge on insurance policies to fund benefits for firefighters presumed to have gotten cancer from their work, passed the Senate March 22 after being amended to remove the surcharge funding approach, said state Sen.
- PUB DATE: 3/30/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Seacoast Online

Charges lodged against New York firefighter accused of harassing co-worker

A Utica firefighter pleaded not guilty Thursday to three misdemeanor charges stemming from a Jan. 6 incident in which he allegedly harassed a female co-worker. The defendant, Richard Forte, was charged with fourth-degree criminal mischief, offering a false written statement and third-degree criminal tampering.
- PUB DATE: 3/30/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Utica Observer-Dispatch

Two former West Virginia firefighters arrested, accused of setting fires

The blame for a series of Cabell County wild fires has been laid at the feet of two former area firefighters. Former Ona Volunteer Fire Department firefighter Landy Chapman and former Salt Rick Volunteer Fire Department firefighter Allen Black have both been charged with felonies, surprising people in Salt Rock.
- PUB DATE: 3/30/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WCHS-TV ABC 8

Philadelphia firefighters battle three-alarm fire at church

Firefighters battled a three-alarm blaze inside a church in North Philadelphia on Thursday. The blaze started before 2:30 p.m. Thursday inside The Original Apostolic Faith Church of the Lord Jesus Christ in the 1500 block of North Broad Street. Crews arrived at a fully engulfed building located near Temple University.
- PUB DATE: 3/30/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WPVI-TV 6 ABC.com

Last alarm for 2 fallen Pennsylvania firefighters: 'They have gone home'

The roar of sirens and engines gave way to the wail of bagpipes and the thunder of bass drums. Eyes watered, but not from smoke. Shined shoes and dress blues replaced soiled boots and water-soaked jackets. All this, as hundreds of firefighters from across Pennsylvania and as far away as Boston, Toronto, Kentucky and Chicago gathered to bid a formal farewell to fallen York City firefighters Ivan Flanscha, 50, and Zachary Anthony, 29.
- PUB DATE: 3/29/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: PennLive

West Virginia House Speaker asks for firefighter death benefit bill to be retroactive following tragedy

House Speaker Tim Armstead has called for a bill that will double the death benefits for emergency personnel who die in the line of duty to be retroactively effective Jan. 1, in light of a crash that killed two members of the Pratt Volunteer Fire Department. In a letter addressed to Gov. Jim Justice, Armstead requested that changing the effective date of Senate Bill 625 “be placed on the call for a special session if one is to be held in the near future.
- PUB DATE: 3/29/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Charleston Gazette

Chicago fire lieutenant charged with misdemeanor after fistfight at fire station, authorities say

A Chicago Fire Department lieutenant faces a misdemeanor charge after he punched his colleague in the face at a Far South Side fire station, according to authorities. Chicago fire Lt. Leonard Johnson, 53, was charged Wednesday with misdemeanor battery after an argument with a 52-year-old male firefighter descended into a fistfight, according to a Chicago police spokeswoman.
- PUB DATE: 3/29/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Chicago Tribune

Michigan state fire marshal wants data on PFAS-laden firefighting foam

The state fire marshal wants Michigan fire departments to report their use and disposal of a chemical-laden firefighting foam that has contaminated state groundwater. The Michigan PFAS Action Response Team (MPART) announced the survey effort on Wednesday, March 28. State Fire Marshal Kevin Sehlmeyer wants to know how much Aqueous Film Forming Foam (AFFF) is, or was, in use around the state and develop a strategy for its disposal, the state says.
- PUB DATE: 3/29/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Mlive.com

North Carolina firefighters' personal cars are protected behind gates but that didn't keep thieves out

The parking lots of Charlotte Fire Department stations are monitored by security cameras — and many are blocked off with gates — because thieves have repeatedly targeted firefighters' personal cars over the years. In December, Charlotte City Council agreed to spend up to $185,000 to outfit the rest of the city's fire stations with security cameras, hoping to cut down on break-ins.
- PUB DATE: 3/29/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Charlotte Observer

'I'm feeling very lucky,' says New Jersey firefighter burned in flashover

City firefighter Frank Walsh is recovering at home after receiving first- and second-degree burns while battling a fire that flashed over in a vacant building early Monday morning. “All things considered, I’m feeling very lucky,” Walsh told the Press of Atlantic City after he was released Tuesday afternoon from the Jefferson Hospital Burn Unit in Philadelphia.
- PUB DATE: 3/28/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Press of Atlantic City

Shocking video shows 8-year-old Indiana boy jumping from fourth floor apartment to escape fire

VIDEO - An eight-year-old boy narrowly escaped an Indiana apartment fire Sunday by jumping from a fourth-story window. He was caught by neighbors holding blankets. Two other children, 2-year-old Kailani Gober and 4-year-old Khristopher Gober, died of smoke inhalation and burns, according to the Lake County coroner.
- PUB DATE: 3/28/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WGN-TV 9 WB Chicago

Baltimore 911 dispatch system hacked, investigation underway, officials confirm

Baltimore’s 911 dispatch system was hacked by an unknown actor or actors over the weekend, prompting a temporary shutdown of automated dispatching and an investigation into the breach, Mayor Catherine Pugh’s office confirmed Tuesday. James Bentley, a spokesman for Pugh, confirmed that the Sunday morning hack affected messaging functions within the computer-aided dispatch, or CAD, system, but said the mayor would not otherwise comment on the matter Tuesday.
- PUB DATE: 3/28/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Baltimore Sun

Philadelphia woman called 911 - Why did it take 3 days to find her body and her kin in gutted house?

As flames devoured the North Philadelphia rowhouse beneath her last week, Alita Johnson cowered in a small third-floor bathroom with her father and 3-year-old son, pleading with 911 to send someone to their rescue. Firefighters responded. They extinguished the blaze and rescued other tenants. But when they cleared the scene and packed up to leave, Johnson and her family remained behind – missed and overlooked.
- PUB DATE: 3/28/2018 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: PHILLY.COM