Welcome to EMTBravo.com

Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to contribute to this site by submitting your own content or replying to existing content. You'll be able to customize your profile, receive reputation points as a reward for submitting content, while also communicating with other members via your own private inbox, plus much more!

This message will be removed once you have signed in.

Flashpoint

One town, 35 chiefs

31 posts in this topic

Quote

 

COLONIE NY -- With an all-volunteer force, you might expect Colonie's firefighting to be a low-cost operation.

You'd be wrong.

 

Colonie spends $8.8 million, more than the city of Schenectady's full-time paid force of firefighters. And the Capital Region suburb has more fire vehicles than the cities of Albany, Schenectady and Troy combined, a Times Union investigation has found.

 

 

Article: http://m.timesunion.com/local/article/One-town-35-chiefs-1370649.php

fdalumnus, FDNY 10-75 and vodoly like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A friend of mine (RIP) did a comparison study of a career county fire department in Maryland that is a twin to Nassau County and found the career county department operated with a budget half the size of the amount it costs to operate all of the Nassau County's VFD's. The FDNY operates FIVE rescue companies in a city of 8000000 people, Suffolk County with 1,200,000 people has OVER ONE HUNDRED rescue trucks and no career fire departments. FDNY has an average of 10,000 rescue responses annually. I don't believe that Nassau and Suffolk County have anywhere near that amount. 

FDNY 10-75, nfd2004 and fdalumnus like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This article is apparently from 2011. Has anything changed since then (sure I know the answer)....

Westfield12 and fdalumnus like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, bad box said:

A friend of mine (RIP) did a comparison study of a career county fire department in Maryland that is a twin to Nassau County and found the career county department operated with a budget half the size of the amount it costs to operate all of the Nassau County's VFD's. The FDNY operates FIVE rescue companies in a city of 8000000 people, Suffolk County with 1,200,000 people has OVER ONE HUNDRED rescue trucks and no career fire departments. FDNY has an average of 10,000 rescue responses annually. I don't believe that Nassau and Suffolk County have anywhere near that amount. 

 

I would not be surprised to find this to be the case with most 'major' urban/suburban counties.  If you took all the budgets for all the departments, paid and volunteer, I'm sure you could fund a very well equipped, single paid department to adequately cover the County.

 

Are those 100 rescue trucks on LI dedicated rescues? or also rescue/engines.  Seems like as soon as you add a haligan tool to an engine its a rescue engine which qualifies for that T-shirt upgrade.

BFD1054 likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Same here in Bergen County almost every town runs a Heavy Rescue  We run a rescue/pumper In Englewood Cliffs  There use to be ladder towers in almost all the Dept's In our mutual aid Palisades Park switching to a streight stick after years of using ladder tower Englewood Cliff's runs a ladder tower City of Englewood ladder tower & A stick Fort Lee ladder tower & a stick Leonia stick Edgewater  aerial tower & Squirt  Ridgefield ladder tower & Mid Mount Quint  Fairview stick  Cliffside Park Ladder tower tiller & Squirt  Englewood Cliff's is only dept in our mutual aid that does not run a heavy rescue

Edited by vodoly

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Apparently, the Town of Colonie is around 56 square miles.

From what I remember of the area, it's quite populated. 

I am sure some consolidation could help. But that thought process seems to scare the crap out of many people. However, when done properly, consolidation could be a win-win for all involved.

Potentially downsize in the way of firehouses and apparatus (saving a tremendous amount of money). This could also potentially increase the manpower out of each station. 

I am not sure of the combined call volume in the town as there are so many independent companies. Perhaps some career staffing could be justified?

 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colonie,_New_York

Westfield12 likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, BFD1054 said:

Apparently, the Town of Colonie is around 56 square miles.

From what I remember of the area, it's quite populated. 

I am sure some consolidation could help. But that thought process seems to scare the crap out of many people. However, when done properly, consolidation could be a win-win for all involved.

Potentially downsize in the way of firehouses and apparatus (saving a tremendous amount of money). This could also potentially increase the manpower out of each station. 

I am not sure of the combined call volume in the town as there are so many independent companies. Perhaps some career staffing could be justified?

 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colonie,_New_York

 

But then not everyone would get a take home car and be able to maintain their silos of excellence!

Bnechis likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, babhits16 said:

 

But then not everyone would get a take home car and be able to maintain their silos of excellence!

 

You're right, silly me....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Population of Colonie, NY was just under 8,000 people in 2013. Not exactly a densely packed urban area, spread out among 50 plus square miles. 

Westfield12 and BFD1054 like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
32 minutes ago, nfd2004 said:

Population of Colonie, NY was just under 8,000 people in 2013. Not exactly a densely packed urban area, spread out among 50 plus square miles. 

 

I think that's probably the village of Colonie. The Town of Colonie had a population of 81,951 in 2010

Westfield12 likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, EMT111 said:

 

I think that's probably the village of Colonie. The Town of Colonie had a population of 81,951 in 2010

 

Sir, no matter how I try, whether I type in Village of Colonie, NY or Town of Colonie, NY, I still come up with the same number of people. That is 7,913 according to a 2013 censes.

 

And when we start to talk about Rescues, or the FDNY, I got a feeling "Bad Box" knows exactly what he's talking about. Both from a career, as well as a volunteer firefighters point of view.

bad box likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
25 minutes ago, AFS1970 said:

Why do we cry out about Quints as manpower killers but love Rescue/Engines?

 

Because many fail to see the bigger picture and context involved when Quints are introduced, particularly on a larger scale like what St. Louis and Richmond, VA did.  I think there's a tendency to blame the apparatus' existence rather than the people making the decision to make cuts to the department. 

 

As I understand the St. Louis history, the decision was made to make cuts to manpower and companies due to financial needs.  The Total Quint Concept (TQC) that they pioneered was born out of trying to achieve the necessary reductions without closing stations, ensuring suppression capabilities at each station continued and not severely hindering operations.  I forget the exact numbers off hand, but I think they had something like 30 stations with 30 engine companies and lets say 10 truck companies.  This would give them 10 double houses at the time. 

 

They needed to cut something like 6 companies.  So they were looking at either closing some houses altogether or potentially having some houses with only a truck company in order to not close the house.   They deployed 30 engine quints and 4 truck quints from those 30 stations.   It's easy to look at the raw numbers and link quints to their loss of manpower/apparatus.  However, it wasn't the quint that killed their manpower with the closing of 6 companies or whatever it was.  The City did that with the decision to make the cuts.

 

The adoption of the TQC allowed them to keep all stations open, kept a suppression capable unit in each station and provided some increased operational flexibility.  Was it ideal?  Probably not, but was it a workable solution for the situation?  Seemed like it worked.

 

As for the rescue engine, it seems the tendency with them is more about enhancing the engine's capability rather than replacing the Rescue Company, thus they don't have that same correlation with manpower reduction that the quint does.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, AFS1970 said:

 

As for the rescues, if you are going to compare apples and oranges to make a point, go right ahead. However the functions that most of those rescues in Nassau County are set up for are handled by truck companies in NYC, so to compare a truly honest example you would have to add in every truck company to those 5 rescues. You might even need to add in the Tac units and the Haz-Mat / Squad companies also. The numbers might show a little difference then.

 

 

 

The Nassau County departments that have heavy rescues generally also have one or more aerials (including tower ladders). If you think it's justifiable for Nassau County to have that many heavy rescue rigs then more power to you. The fact is, it's a massive waste of taxpayer dollars.

Newburgher and fdalumnus like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, spin_the_wheel said:

Back in the day dedicated rescue rigs were needed to carry extrication equipment and other "rescue" tools.  How many remember the first generation Hurst tools and cutters?  A lot of space was needed for all this "stuff."  Each community needed such a rig to carry the equipment. 

 

Nowadays a properly spec'd out Ladder or Engine can carry all this equipment plus more.  Dedicated rescue rigs are really not needed in many Nassau Communities agreed. 

 

Once again the root of the problem comes back to history/tradition and leadership afraid of making a change.  Most of the time what you have is a dedicated rescue or patrol company (Westchester/rockland term) with a group of members with a history.  Sometimes a very old history.  That's the rig they use, a rescue truck.  As leadership in a particular department do you just take the rig away, sell it and disband the company?  Tell the membership they have to join other companies?  Nobody wants to be "that guy" to do such a thing.  Not saying its wrong...just putting the facts out there.

 

What you end up with is another form of "consolidation" that the fire service both volunteer AND career are afraid to entertain most of the time.

 

 

 

 

 

Actually what needs to be done through proper leadership is NOT do away with these Rescue Companies. But what must be done is realize that every fire company does NOT need a heavy rescue. 

 

Thst should be very easy to understand by the membership as well as easy to explain by using the example that if a city like New York with 8 million people can do it with only Five Heavy Rescue Cos, a place much smaller can certainly merge their equipment together with other nearby smaller departments.

 

As an example the City of Bridgeport, the largest city in Connecticut with a population about 140,000 people has One Heavy Rescue. While I compare my home town, Norwich, Ct with a population of 40.000 people with Three Heavy Rescues.

 

In addition comparing the same two cities Norwich has at least twice the number of Pumpers, one less ladder truck but five mini Rescues used for medicals , that they say saves where and tear on  fire apparatus. Plus three brush fire units. 

 

Norwich is slightly larger in square miles covered. 

 

I feel bad for the guys who  must learn to accept the fact that changes need to be made. But I also feel bad for all of us taxpayers that watch our money being wasted on totally unnecessary fire apparatus. 

vodoly likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing that must be considered about these 'heavy rescues' is that they are often nothing more than scene support + basic extrication, and are not considered a special unit.  The hurst tool makes them 'heavy'.  Beyond hydraulic tools, airbags and cribbing there is nothing that makes them 'heavy'- the rest of the truck is filled with scene support gear such as spare SCBA's, generators, extra handtools, speedy dry etc.  There is no special training, just pass FF1 like anyone else.

 

In my opinion a true heavy rescue is a special unit, comprised of experienced FF's that are TRAINED and EQUIPPED for vehicle extrication, technical rescue, SCUBA (if applicable), minor hazmat, and most importantly FAST/ RIT. Not scene support.  Remember first rescue company in the nation (FDNY Rescue 1) was created for the sole purpose of firefighter rescue.

 

Another good point was made- most heavy rescue are apart of their own companies.  As unnecessary as they are they will never go away, remember a fire company in NYS can technically be considered a legal form of government.

 

There are a few departments in Nassau County that operate 'heavy rescues' in the traditional sense.  They are well trained and can be used as a regional asset and their record of providing mutual aide to other agencies for special situations proves it (Bethpage, North Bellmore).

Edited by babhits16
dwcfireman and vodoly like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, nfd2004 said:

 

Sir, no matter how I try, whether I type in Village of Colonie, NY or Town of Colonie, NY, I still come up with the same number of people. That is 7,913 according to a 2013 censes.

 

And when we start to talk about Rescues, or the FDNY, I got a feeling "Bad Box" knows exactly what he's talking about. Both from a career, as well as a volunteer firefighters point of view.

 

Population statistics: http://www.census.gov/quickfacts/table/PST045215/3617332,3600117343,36001

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/29/2016 at 6:09 PM, Flashpoint said:

 

This article is from 2011.  As far as change goes..... Not much other than the addition of 2 more ladder trucks and less man power.  

 

There was a recently published article in the same newspaper about a multiple car fire at a supermarket that took the home department (Latham FD) 23 minutes to respond to with 2 members.  Apparently, according to the article and the Colonie Professional Firefighters Association facebook page, there were 3 additional mutual aid departments that responded prior to the home agency's engine.  There was a video as well.  I don't have a subscription to the newspaper so I can not access the online content.

 

As far as population goes.... excess of 83,000 night time population excluding the Village of Menands and Village of Colonie.  Daytime population is well over 120,000 with all the commercial business and office parks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, babhits16 said:

One thing that must be considered about these 'heavy rescues' is that they are often nothing more than scene support + basic extrication, and are not considered a special unit.  The hurst tool makes them 'heavy'.  Beyond hydraulic tools, airbags and cribbing there is nothing that makes them 'heavy'- the rest of the truck is filled with scene support gear such as spare SCBA's, generators, extra handtools, speedy dry etc.  There is no special training, just pass FF1 like anyone else.

 

In my opinion a true heavy rescue is a special unit, comprised of experienced FF's that are TRAINED and EQUIPPED for vehicle extrication, technical rescue, SCUBA (if applicable), minor hazmat, and most importantly FAST/ RIT. Not scene support.  Remember first rescue company in the nation (FDNY Rescue 1) was created for the sole purpose of firefighter rescue.

 

Another good point was made- most heavy rescue are apart of their own companies.  As unnecessary as they are they will never go away, remember a fire company in NYS can technically be considered a legal form of government.

 

There are a few departments in Nassau County that operate 'heavy rescues' in the traditional sense.  They are well trained and can be used as a regional asset and their record of providing mutual aide to other agencies for special situations proves it (Bethpage, North Bellmore).

Great point.  I hate to compare FDNY to any other organization as they are in a world to their own.  Especially when it is said "FDNY only has 5 rescues for the whole....."  I have always thought that a weak argument.  What are we exactly talking about?  The equipment and function of the rig or the rig itself?

 

As babhits states volunteer rescue trucks are pretty much scene support units.  An FDNY heavy rescue has nothing in common with the average volunteer departments "heavy rescue" and should not be compared. 

 

The average volunteer departments rescue rig carries the extrication tool and anything that can't be stored on the other rigs.  FDNY ladder companies do the bulk of the auto extrications unless the accident happens to be in one of the rescue companies first due areas.   So if we are talking about extrication tools are we to compare the number of ladder companies with extrication tools in NY City vs. the number of rescue trucks in Nassau or Suffolk?   Many volunteer departments have one extrication tool on a heavy rescue rig.  Are we saying that there are too many extrication tools in Nassau or Suffolk or Westchester etc....?

 

If we are to argue for trimming certain departments fleets down looking at a rig that is for the most part a scene support unit might not be the rig to cut.  Maybe an Engine in some departments where one of three is always sitting in the station even during working fires.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

vodoly and x635 like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, spin_the_wheel said:

Great point.  I hate to compare FDNY to any other organization as they are in a world to their own.  Especially when it is said "FDNY only has 5 rescues for the whole....."  I have always thought that a weak argument.  What are we exactly talking about?  The equipment and function of the rig or the rig itself?

 

As babhits states volunteer rescue trucks are pretty much scene support units.  An FDNY heavy rescue has nothing in common with the average volunteer departments "heavy rescue" and should not be compared. 

 

The average volunteer departments rescue rig carries the extrication tool and anything that can't be stored on the other rigs.  FDNY ladder companies do the bulk of the auto extrications unless the accident happens to be in one of the rescue companies first due areas.   So if we are talking about extrication tools are we to compare the number of ladder companies with extrication tools in NY City vs. the number of rescue trucks in Nassau or Suffolk?   Many volunteer departments have one extrication tool on a heavy rescue rig.  Are we saying that there are too many extrication tools in Nassau or Suffolk or Westchester etc....?

 

If we are to argue for trimming certain departments fleets down looking at a rig that is for the most part a scene support unit might not be the rig to cut.  Maybe an Engine in some departments where one of three is always sitting in the station even during working fires.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spending $500,000 to $1 million for a heavy rescue vehicle if all it does is carry an extrication tool and whatever non essential leftovers that don't fit on another rig is a senseless waste of tax dollars. Any full size pumper or aerial device can carry an extrication tool and cribbing. If a department reevaluates the left over stuff that's carried on their expensive rescue truck they may well find that much of it isn't needed and the rest is a duplication of items that are on other rigs or can be carried on the other rigs.

Edited by bad box
Newburgher, vodoly and nfd2004 like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, bad box said:

Spending $500,000 to $1 million for a heavy rescue vehicle if all it does is carry an extrication tool and whatever non essential leftovers that don't fit on another rig is a senseless waste of tax dollars. Any full size pumper or aerial device can carry an extrication tool and cribbing. If a department reevaluates the left over stuff that's carried on their expensive rescue truck they may well find that much of it isn't needed and the rest is a duplication of items that are on other rigs or can be carried on the other rigs.

Agreed.  In most cases a dedicated rescue rig is not needed. 

 

Truth is for the most part the taxpayers don't give a crap.  In Nassau and Suffolk your fire tax is one of the smallest if not the smallest tax compared to the rest of the bill.  There are extreme examples...Gordon Heights in Suffolk is one...but not many.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, spin_the_wheel said:

Agreed.  In most cases a dedicated rescue rig is not needed. 

 

Truth is for the most part the taxpayers don't give a crap.  In Nassau and Suffolk your fire tax is one of the smallest if not the smallest tax compared to the rest of the bill.  There are extreme examples...Gordon Heights in Suffolk is one...but not many.  

 

But unfortunately here is something else those taxpayers don't understand because NOBODY tells them. "It's NOT the number of fancy fire trucks that put out the fires, it's people that put out those fires". Yes, it's the number of skilled and highly trained firefighters that show up who really are the one's that save their lives and put out their fires quickly before they loose everything.

 

 Let's go back to the FDNY, who once did a study on number of fire trucks vs number of firefighters that showed up. (maybe Bad Box remembers this). They found that in MOST cases Two Engines and Two Ladder trucks could handle most building fires in the initial stages. But it was really the amount of manning that arrived quickly on the scene that had the biggest impact on saving lives and property. Hence came the signal 10-75 as it is known, then providing an extra Engine Co purely for manpower to fight the fire. Later of course came the response of a FAST Co etc.

 

  Also in L.A. City, the FD there found that a Task Force consisting of Two Engines and One Ladder, arriving with it's full staff together would be much more effective than several companies all arriving at different times.

 

Now we look at a place like Long Island and we know fully manned companies arriving together is NOT the case. In addition what I'm sure is a key factor in the fires fought on Long Island that most other areas do not have, is that so many departments are lucky enough to have available many OFF DUTY FDNY members. They are available and probably some of the Best Trained and Most Experienced group of firefighters in the World. Most places don't have that option.

 

Also what those Long Island taxpayers don't know is that the fires would still be put out WITHOUT spending money on all those fancy fire trucks. Cut two thirds out and the results would be the same.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, nfd2004 said:

 

But unfortunately here is something else those taxpayers don't understand because NOBODY tells them. "It's NOT the number of fancy fire trucks that put out the fires, it's people that put out those fires". Yes, it's the number of skilled and highly trained firefighters that show up who really are the one's that save their lives and put out their fires quickly before they loose everything.

 

 Let's go back to the FDNY, who once did a study on number of fire trucks vs number of firefighters that showed up. (maybe Bad Box remembers this). They found that in MOST cases Two Engines and Two Ladder trucks could handle most building fires in the initial stages. But it was really the amount of manning that arrived quickly on the scene that had the biggest impact on saving lives and property. Hence came the signal 10-75 as it is known, then providing an extra Engine Co purely for manpower to fight the fire. Later of course came the response of a FAST Co etc.

 

  Also in L.A. City, the FD there found that a Task Force consisting of Two Engines and One Ladder, arriving with it's full staff together would be much more effective than several companies all arriving at different times.

 

Now we look at a place like Long Island and we know fully manned companies arriving together is NOT the case. In addition what I'm sure is a key factor in the fires fought on Long Island that most other areas do not have, is that so many departments are lucky enough to have available many OFF DUTY FDNY members. They are available and probably some of the Best Trained and Most Experienced group of firefighters in the World. Most places don't have that option.

 

Also what those Long Island taxpayers don't know is that the fires would still be put out WITHOUT spending money on all those fancy fire trucks. Cut two thirds out and the results would be the same.

Newsday did an extensive series on the status of the volunteer service on LI years ago.  They put all the facts out there for the public to see.  Correct or incorrect.  What did it do?  It did help keep in check many fire districts who were doing things wrong for years and has kept close accountability on spending habits to this day.  Otherwise it has not had the effect many thought it would on the average taxpayer.  

 

More important then having FDNY members in LI fire departments is just the pure blue collar civil service worker who may be a shift worker.  My department sees a lot of fire for an all volunteer department and we have very few FDNY members.  But we do have many other shift workers who get the rigs out.  Police officers, emergency service dispatchers, fire marshals, correction officers, career EMT's, nurses, sanitation and dpw workers.  These are the people who keep the average volunteer fire department running in most LI departments.  

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My point exactly was that FDNY is not doing it with 5 rescues. Oddly enough for two reasons. First is, like I said, the fact that the trucks do much of the extrication, so they are really doing it with around 149 companies. This does not take into account the similar duties of NYPD ESU. Of course reason two, as others have said is that the FDNY rescue companies are not really the same thing as the similar looking trucks elsewhere due to duties and equipment.

 

Part of this is due to not calling things by the same name everywhere. In my city there is a rig which by Westchester standards would be a Utility. The department that owns it calls it a Unit, but in dispatch we call it a Rescue, simply because 3 CAD systems ago the career firefighters setting up unit designations had no concept of something that was not either an Engine, Truck or Rescue. Then again in CAD we label Tankers as K, because having two types of T's was deemed to confusing and we had a police sergeant who was an airforce veteran so adopted K for Tanker from USAF. I have a friend who is a past chief of two EMS agencies in NJ. He calls his ambulances Rescues or Squads, both of which mean something entirely different to FDNY.

 

Getting back to Nassau, I don't know enough about the area to say if they have too many or too few of anything. However as community borders and automatic aid have increased over the years, it certainly seems that fleets could be trimmed down a bit without a reduction in staffing or services.

 

There is also a matter of perceptions. A few years ago I ran informal run surveys through our CAD system (two systems ago, when things were easy). I stopped when too many Chiefs started asking for them. It was fun when it was a buff project to talk about with a few friends. When it got to be work, and had deadlines, it wasn't fun anymore. However what was interesting was two perspectives I encountered about rigs called Rescues or performing Rescue functions. All of these rigs ran on different responses so were hard to compare except in raw numbers. The company that was always #1 saw the vast difference in stats as them needing a second Rescue to split the volume. The department that was number 2 (mostly due to EMS runs) saw it as being able to absorb #4,5 & 6 and run lots of automatic aid, as those rigs didn't run very much. Oddly enough #3 was pretty much left alone due to some geographical factors. However #1 & #2 were not that far away from each other most months to really matter, yet they had such different interpretations of the stats.

 

Several years ago I visited Colonie NY for a dispatch conference and one of the classes was in a fire station. They had lots of equipment. One member there explained that they had 12 departments, some were districts and others were not. There was also a Fire Marshal's office which was part of the town and responded with some but not all of the 12 districts. Seemed confusing, and I come from a city with 6 departments.

Edited by AFS1970

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, spin_the_wheel said:

Newsday did an extensive series on the status of the volunteer service on LI years ago.  They put all the facts out there for the public to see.  Correct or incorrect.  What did it do?  It did help keep in check many fire districts who were doing things wrong for years and has kept close accountability on spending habits to this day.  Otherwise it has not had the effect many thought it would on the average taxpayer.  

 

More important then having FDNY members in LI fire departments is just the pure blue collar civil service worker who may be a shift worker.  My department sees a lot of fire for an all volunteer department and we have very few FDNY members.  But we do have many other shift workers who get the rigs out.  Police officers, emergency service dispatchers, fire marshals, correction officers, career EMT's, nurses, sanitation and dpw workers.  These are the people who keep the average volunteer fire department running in most LI departments.  

 

 

 

 

 

  I can certainly understand how you say that L.I. is fortunate with the members of the fire dept they have. Many of those workers are available due to their work schedules. In addition to that by virtue of the nature of their work, many must maintain some type of minimum fitness level, plus they are geared and trained to deal with various types of emergencies. Long Island is a very special place that has the fortunate option of having many of these NYC workers. They are a part of public servants assigned to work in the most populated city in the United States. Many serving it's citizens under difficult emergency circumstances.

 

 On the contrary, my own brother, a Retired Bridgeport Battalion Chief who rose through the ranks. He fought fires in the busiest companies, during that city's busiest decade for fire duty. When he retired he joined a local volunteer fire department here in Eastern, Ct. He lived right near the firehouse, was available 24/7 and willing to work and give his time. Plus he brought with him years of fire fighting experience from one of the busiest depts in CT. To me, this department had just "Won the Lottery". But that was not the case at all.

 

 Instead many, including the chief, felt threatened and did their best to get rid of him. He was told NOT to touch their Seagrave rearmount ladder. The same kind he had driven for many years as well as was assigned a Lt in charge of busiest ladder co in the city.

 

  One evening a member of the dept was giving a class on that ladder, except when it came time to get the ladder out of the bed, guess who had to show him how to do it. Another time when the ladder had been extended operating at a fire, the operator could not get it back down. It was first thought that there was a mechanical failure of the ladder that's why it wouldn't come down. Guess who was able to get that ladder down in a few short seconds. He was a hero that day, but shortly after he couldn't take it anymore and quit. I imagine most of Long Island does NOT have those kinds of problems.   

fdalumnus and AFS1970 like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/2/2016 at 9:03 PM, nfd2004 said:

On the contrary, my own brother, a Retired Bridgeport Battalion Chief who rose through the ranks. He fought fires in the busiest companies, during that city's busiest decade for fire duty. When he retired he joined a local volunteer fire department here in Eastern, Ct. He lived right near the firehouse, was available 24/7 and willing to work and give his time. Plus he brought with him years of fire fighting experience from one of the busiest depts in CT. To me, this department had just "Won the Lottery". But that was not the case at all...

...One evening a member of the dept was giving a class on that ladder, except when it came time to get the ladder out of the bed, guess who had to show him how to do it. Another time when the ladder had been extended operating at a fire, the operator could not get it back down. It was first thought that there was a mechanical failure of the ladder that's why it wouldn't come down. Guess who was able to get that ladder down in a few short seconds. He was a hero that day, but shortly after he couldn't take it anymore and quit. I imagine most of Long Island does NOT have those kinds of problems.   

I wave seen similar, mostly because old rules do not adapt well to experienced members. In my old station drivers started on the Rescue (because it was the smallest) went through the two engines and ended up with the truck. In order to drive the engines you had to memorize nearly all the hydrants in the small district. This worked fairly well for years. This however could not adapt well to two situations:

 

A new member joins who had previously been a member of a neighboring department. That department was a frequent automatic aid department for water supply. So now you have a member who yesterday was your supply engine driver and now could not even drive your rescue, let alone an engine.

 

A member with experience from a career department (with multiple driving assignments) has no way to be fast tracked through the process so despite a couple of years driving at a truck company, he is not considered able to drive a truck, because he didn't drive both of the engines yet.

 

One senior member told me a story of being in driver training, and being strung along for what he thought was too long. He drove to calls but only with the Chief present. He pumped at calls and drills but still was not certified. Then one night a parade came up and he was the only driver there. The chief told him to drive to the parade. He said he couldn't as he had not been certified as a driver yet. He said he was certified that night, went to the parade and drove to calls for many years after that.

 

If I knew the secret to honoring our history while still adapting to various situations, I would probably be the fire king by now. Sometimes I think there may not be a way to do this at all. Too many personalities involved.

fdalumnus likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Members

    No members to show