A "Partner in Progress"

Heroes are not defined by an age

Wednesday, April 27, 2016   ELMHURST, IL

How well do you educate your community on the various types of home emergencies?  There is no question that you and your department will respond to the community's call for help as fast as you are able to. However, when seconds count your community is first due on their own call and the question is, have you done your part to educate them?   While your local Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP/911) Center will most times provide instruction for life saving measures, you and your department's public education programs that you provide can serve to be just as critical. Click on the title of this article and follow the link to read about a 3 year old little girl who was rescued from her pool that she was drowning in, by her 11 year old brother. Congratulations to Sam Braafhart and to Elmhurst Fire Department.



FDNY honors one of their eldest

Tuesday, April 26, 2016  NEW YORK, NY

When leadership leaves a legacy, you treat them right. FDNY did just that this week when they hosted a surprise party to honor their retired Chief Orlence (Dan) Orvis who celebrated his 40th retirement anniversary.  Chief Orvis shared this to the crew, "You're in a wonderful job. Be good to the job."  Congratulations Chief!

Click on the title of this article and follow the link to read the full article. 



Firefighter online conduct - what are you doing about it?

Monday, April 25, 2016   FAIRFAX COUNTY, VA

As information continues to unfold in the devastating loss of Firefighter Nicole Mittendorff from Fairfax County Fire-Rescue, Chief Bowers and his senior leadership are facing even more challenges. Reports are leading the investigation to some down right filthy online postings that may have lead their sister firefighter to making the choice she did.  While the investigation will not bring Nicole back, it very well could prevent the next brother/sister from being pushed to the point of what they see as 'no other options.'  Our friend, colleague, and mentor Billy G addresses this very well in his recent posting. Please take the time to read it, reflect on it, and then discuss with your leadership how you can take a better approach in preventing this from happening in your department. Click on the title of this article and then follow the links to Billy G's page. Trust me, it's worth the read!



Coming home!

Monday, April 25, 2016   SYKESVILLE, MD

Last week men and women from across the country gathered to honor the life of Prince George's County Paramedic John "Skillet" Ulmschneider who was killed in the line of duty when he arrived on the scene of a 'check the welfare' call.  During that same call, Firefighter Kevin Swain of Morningside Volunteer Fire Department & Sykesville Fire Company was also struck by the gunfire and was rushed to Shock Trauma at the University of Maryland Medical Center.  Yesterday, his colleagues gathered to bring him home from the hospital. We wish him a speedy recovery and continue to lift all of the fire family involved in this incident up in prayer. 



Fire Chief's words or management style?

Friday, April 22, 2016   NAPLES, FL

City of Naples Fire Chief Steve McInerny was fired last month due to his management style according to the city. However, Chief McInerny believes it was perhaps a political movement.  Chief McInerny was trying to advocate for more personnel and equipment and was quoted saying, "We really need to burn something to the ground...to prove to council that we need more people."   Here's the question...  Within your own department, how many times have you tried to seek financial support for either equipment and/or personnel from your leadership and have made comments like this?  Or perhaps in your local neighborhood there is a particular intersection that there have been multiple fatal accidents and someone has said, 'how many people have to die at this intersection before they put in a traffic light.'  We are not speaking for Chief McInerny or portraying his intentions with his words, but what we are saying is this... choose your words carefully.  Click on the title of this article and follow the links to read the full story. 



Keeping Fairfax County Fire-Rescue in our thoughts

Thursday, April 21, 2016   FAIRFAX COUNTY, VA

The search for Firefighter Paramedic Mittendorff ended yesterday and unfortunately it wasn't the outcome we had been hoping for. Please keep the family of Nicole Mittendorff and her Fairfax County Fire-Rescue family in your thoughts and prayers as they mourn her loss.  Click on the title of this article and follow the link to read Chief Bowers' statement. 



Help find Nicole Mittendorff

Wednesday, April 20, 2016   FAIRFAX COUNTY, VA

If anyone has had any contact with Nicole Mittendorff in the past two weeks, please call authorities and share any information that you may have. Our prayers are with her family, our Fairfax County Fire-Rescue family, and her friends. Click on the title of this article and follow the links to watch the press conferences.



What's your background check policy?

Monday, April 18, 2016   ROCKBRIDGE COUNTY, VA

Before you offer a position to a new firefighter, do you conduct a background check? What about when you promote current staff into a new position, do you run another one? Or what about the firefighter that's been with your department for years, do you ever run another one on him/her?  Running it just once may or may not reflect what you need to know about your staff.  Click on the title of this article and follow the link to read about how one individual is in some hot water and the county was lucky to uncover some truth....



Long list of disciplinary issues leaves a firefighter in hot water

Wednesday, April 6, 2016   MELBOURNE, FL

A firefighter is in trouble once again, only this time it may cost him his career.  In the past three years he has been reprimanded for taking the fire engine to a picnic at his girlfriend's home while on duty, taking his crew golfing while on duty, driving on an active airport runway vs the one being dispatched to, and most recently for 'hastily placed or tossed' oxygen cylinder while tending to a patient.  Click on the title of this article and follow the link to the news article to read more about the troubles he is facing. Put yourself in the Fire Chief's shoes and ask the hard questions of, 'how would I respond if this were one of my firefighters,' and does your company policies address this type of activity?



Boy Scout was Hungry for Fire

Tuesday, April 5, 2016   FAIR HAVEN, NJ

Becoming a Boy Scout and earning merit badges is an honorable act. You learn and strive to better yourself, your community, and your country.  The same is said of the volunteer fire service who dedicate countless hours and their lives to protecting & serving their community.  What you would not expect is that someone who thrives in both of those worlds would make a choice to do something of the total opposite.  When the fire department leadership  learned that one of their own 19yo firefighters and former Boy Scout was being charged with starting a fire that they responded to, they were shocked. Moral of this story, even though you have  an honorable background, it doesn't make you exempt from making poor choices. What do you do in your department to build relationships and educate yourself on warning signs of poor choices on the horizon?  Click on the title of this article and follow the link to read the complete news article. 



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