Click the image to watch the interview with Commissioner Donald Austin.
Saying, "There's not a building in the city that's worth losing a firefighter's life, particularly if it's vacant", Commissioner Donald Austin is setting policy for the Detroit Fire Department. The Detroit native, who spent his career in the Los Angeles Fire Department, calls the new policy, "kind of a paradigm shift".
Detroit Fire Commissioner Donald Austin said firefighters would previously enter every building they responded to as a precaution. But now, Austin said, firefighters will only go into a burning building if there's a clear indication that someone is inside.
"Just to assume that a vacant building always has a squatter or a homeless person in there is kind of a false assumption," Austin said.
Austin said he'll be spreading the word to his chiefs to use caution, but ultimately the fire leader at the scene will have the final decision on whether to send firefighters into the building or not.
Also on STATter911 …
- Detroit Fire Commissioner proposes letting vacant buildings 50% involved burn to the ground. Donald Austin asked to make cut in next year’s budget. – April 22, 2012
- Is this ‘let it burn to the ground’ at work? Interesting video from Detroit. – May 8, 2012
- UPDATED – Fireground audio: Four firefighters hurt when dwelling explodes. Same neighborhood where six homes burned two nights ago. – September 20, 2012
- UPDATE – Belgian firefighter says TV reporter wrong that they paid $2K each for Detroit FD ride-along/training. LeDuff rains on critically acclaimed ‘Burn’ local premiere. – September 29, 2012
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