Arrival video by firelensman of a vacant church and commercial building burning in Los Angeles. Here's part of the description with the video:
Task Force 33, Engine 46, Engine 57, Engine 21 Battalion 13 first on scene on the 5900 block of South Figueroa Street had heavy smoke pushing from a row of vacant one story commercial buildings including a vacant church. Firefighters quickly laid lines and attacked the fire with handlines, having the bulk of fire under control in 30 minutes.
Video from firelensman of a house fire on Tuesday in Los Angeles, California. Here's some of what he posted with the video:
It took Los Angeles Firefighters close to 40 minutes to knock down a blaze that destroyed the attic of a one and two story house on the 2200 block of Virginia Road in the Mid-City / Lafayette Park district of L.A. Firefighters first on scene had smoke showing from the attic of the house and ventilated the roof. Firefighters also went to work protecting exposures, extinguishing the flames with several handlines.
Video by firelensman of a fire on Thursday in a large two-story house at 4232 La Salle Aveue in Los Angeles. According to firelensmen, this is the second fire in the home in the past week. No injuries reported. More video from the fire below by LOUDLABS NEWS.
A fire in a West LA apartment high-rise injured at least five people, including a 2-year-old girl, and displaced residents of 51 units Friday.
The blaze began in a unit on the 11th floor, and sent thick smoke into the building’s upper floors. An estimated 100 to 150 people were unable to return to their homes, and some were receiving assistance from the American Red Cross, according to Los Angeles Fire officials.
Aerial video showed firefighters treating an adult and the child on the roof of the complex after the fire was declared a knockdown.
The girl and the man, who was identified as her grandfather, were found lost on the 18th floor and brought to the roof for treatment before being transported to a hospital, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department. The girl, who was reportedly not breathing when firefighters found her, remained hospitalized in critical condition.
One pet dog also died in the fire.
Three firefighters were treated and released from Grossman Burn Center for non-life-threatening burns. However, they remained off-duty after their release, according to Fire Department officials.
The fire broke out just before noon inside an 11th-floor unit at 11740 Wilshire Blvd, the 25-floor Barrington Plaza. The fire was isolated to one two-bedroom unit — built in 1961, it was not equipped with a sprinkler system — on the 11th floor and knocked down in about one hour.
Video from firelensman of the Los Angeles Fire Department dealing with a fire early Wednesday morning at 14660 Arminta Street in Panorama City. Here’s some of the description with the video:
L.A. Firefighters first on scene had moderate smoke showing from the large 100 by 300 ft. one story commercial. As the fire quickly progressed with flames shooting through the roof, Firefighters went into defensive mode, knocking down the fire with wagon batteries, ladder pipes, portable monitors and numerous handlines. The building was a total loss, housing the companies National Displays and Arrow Chrome Plating. Hazardous Material crews remained on scene through the morning due to the chemicals involved.
More than four hours after the flames were extinguished, LAFD crews were summoned to the Los Angeles Police Department’s Valley Bureau Headquarters, four-tenths of a mile northeast of the blaze, where eleven civilian and uniformed workers – who had not responded to the scene, expressed subjective respiratory irritation and general malaise.
One worker was taken to the hospital by colleagues prior to the Fire Department’s arrival. Following a comprehensive medical evaluation by LAFD Paramedics, nine of the remaining ten patients declined further medical treatment or transportation by Fire Department ambulance. One woman was taken by LAFD Paramedics to a nearby hospital for further evaluation. Her condition was not specified.
Video from firelensman of LAFD in action at a fire yesterday at a furniture story. Here’s part of the description with the video:
It took Los Angeles Firefighters close to an hour to control an intense blaze that damaged a Furniture Shop at 1140 South LaBrea Avenue in L.A.’s Mid-City District. L.A. Firefighters first on scene at “Basic Black Home” Gothic and Fancy Furniture reported a large outdoor fire in the rear with exposures. Firefighters quickly went to work protecting exposures, a two story apartment house and another one story commercial building to the north.
Firefighters carried animals from a strip mall pet store after they sawed through a metal gate to enter the unit and attack a fire that damaged the building’s roof Monday morning in Hollywood.
Aerial video showed firefighters carrying a cage of animals — possibly puppies or small dogs — from the building, identified by signage as Kim’s Pets and Fish. It was not immediately clear whether there are more animals in the building.
The fire, reported at about 6 a.m., damaged at least one unit of the strip mall at Lexington and Vermont avenues. Firefighters used a circular saw to cut through a metal gate and enter the building.
A 20-year-old man who suffered burns over more than 70 percent of his body was fighting for his life this (Thursday) morning after being pulled from a burning apartment in North Hollywood, a fire department official said.
The fire was reported at 10:44 p.m. Wednesday in a first-floor unit in the rear of an apartment building at 6737 Denny Ave., near Vanowen Street and Bob Hope Airport, said Brian Humphrey of the Los Angeles Fire Department.
Thirty-seven firefighters under the command of Battalion Chief Peter Benesch mounted a tenacious fire attack with simultaneous search that led to the dramatic rescue of a 20 year-old pulseless and non-breathing man from the intensely burning apartment.
A relentless resuscitation effort by a trio of LAFD Paramedics ensued and continued during ambulance transport, as the veteran rescuers leveraged decades of experience to restore a heartbeat and respiration to the man, who had sustained second- and third-degree burns to more than 70% of his body.
“Though he remains in critical condition, the efforts of LAFD rescuers have given this man a fighting chance of survival” said Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Brian Humphrey.
No other injuries were reported.
Monetary loss from the fire, which was confined to the one heavily damaged apartment, is still being tabulated. The cause of the blaze remains under a joint active investigation by Los Angeles Police officials and Investigators from the LAFD Arson/Counter-Terrorism Section.
LAFD Firefighters overhaul and knock down hot spots at a midnight blaze that severally damaged a house on the 1400 block of N. New Hampshire Avenue. With an aggressive interior attack the main bulk of fire was knocked down in approximately 20 minutes.
“Firefighters did have a heave fire load when they arrived on scene. Immediately they engaged in an aggressive fire attack, where firefighters forced entry into the building, they used hand lines inside and then firefighters when to the roof in order to do ventilation,” said Captain Jaime Moore of the L.A. City Fire Department.
The fire continued to intensify, as four ladders were brought in to douse from above.
“They placed anywhere between 1,500 to 2,000 gallons of water per minute each on the fire,” Moore said. “What we did there was actually control the fire from spreading to the adjacent structures.”
A fire service leader in providing news to the public about its daily activities suddenly shut down the information flow on Sunday only to be told to turn the spigot on again. The news media started learning this week that the Los Angeles Fire Department, on orders of Chief Brian Cummings, was no longer providing key basic information about incidents, including the location of the response. This comes in the wake of an ongoing controversy about the department’s release of response time data that was not accurate. By late Wednesday, after complaints about the new policy, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa had overruled the chief, for now.
LAFD’s Media and Public Relations Office has long been at the forefront of providing information about ongoing incidents and the inner workings of the department through many platforms, including the Internet and social media. The LAFD News & Information site, as of late Wednesday night, still has the original order from Chief Cummings that was posted on Tuesday:
The following has been issued from the Office of the Fire Chief, Brian L. Cummings:
The City Council has designated the City of Los Angelesas a “hybrid entity” under the Federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 due to the Department’s status as a health care provider. As a hybrid entity, the Department must comply with HIPAA and is only permitted to release Protected Health Information (PHI) for the purposes of treatment, billing and operations under the HIPAA Privacy Rule, without the patient’s permission. In 2009, the President approved additional Federal legislation that increased civil and criminal penalties for the unauthorized disclosure of PHI.
The Department is currently seeking written advice from the City Attorney relative to the release of incident specific PHI to a variety of internal and external sources including elected officials, commissions, the media and associated stakeholders.
The City Attorney has preliminarily opined that the Department should immediately cease the practice of releasing PHI to any source not specifically authorized under the Privacy Rule’s treatment, billing and operations exemption. I realize that this practice will significantly impact the manner in which the Department provides updates and notifications to a wide variety of stakeholders. As the Department receives additional written advice from the City Attorney regarding specific issues, I will ensure that this information and the Department’s procedures will be forwarded for your information.
BRIAN L. CUMMINGS
Earlier this week the LAFD Breaking News widget had details about fires but provided no address information. After Mayor Villagairosa stepped in locations of incidents are again being transmitted.
Below is news coverage of this controversy with excerpts of article both before and after Mayor Villaraigosa stepped in.
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has ordered the fire department to stop a new policy of withholding key information on emergencies.
A letter Wednesday from Villaraigosa tells Fire Chief Brian Cummings to wait for the city attorney’s opinion before implementing the policy.
City News Service says the LAFD announced Tuesday that they had already begun limiting the release of information like locations of incidents and injury information in order to conform to federal medical privacy laws.
Villaraigosa said in response that the department needs “more transparency, not less,” and it is “our duty to provide information to the media and the public.”
City and fire officials had already been butting heads in recent days over the department’s new methods of counting fast responses to emergency calls.
“At a time when the Los Angeles Fire Department needs more transparency, not less, I am directing you to immediately resume releasing information that provides LAFD incident specifics without violating federal law,” Villaraigosa said in a letter sent to Fire Chief Brian Cummings this afternoon.
The department began limiting the information — such as incident locations and injury information — over the weekend to conform with the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPAA, a medical privacy law.
The policy change caused a strong backlash by City Council members and news organizations, who argued the information was necessary for public safety reasons.
The mayor’s unusually blunt order came after a day in which council members criticized the department for halting its years-long practice of providing the public with basic rescue response details, including times, locations and the nature of emergencies, as well as the age and gender of victims.
The sudden change in disclosure was announced earlier this week, even as the department struggled to reassure the public and city lawmakers about response time reports that made it appear that rescuers were getting to people in crisis faster than they actually were. A malfunctioning dispatching system that has delayed help for some victims in recent weeks has added to the department’s woes.
The mayor’s directive marks the first time since the controversy began that Villaraigosa has publicly broken ranks with Fire Chief Brian Cummings and his policies.
Citing a federal medical privacy law, the Los Angeles Fire Department announced today it would no longer provide the public with basic information about fires, medical calls, traffic accidents or other emergencies it responds to.
LAFD public information officers contacted by City News Service today about various fire calls — including a vehicle shearing a fire hydrant in North Hills and a collision between a food truck and a car in downtown Los Angeles that sent two people to hospitals — said they were not permitted to provide any information, including the locations of the crashes. In the case of the downtown collision, a spokesman refused to even confirm a wreck had occurred, even though footage of the crash had already been shown on at least one television news station.
The policy apparently took effect Sunday, when the LAFD began omitting the addresses from media alerts it circulates about fires or other incidents to which crews are dispatched.
For example, a media alert issued Saturday by the LAFD specified that fire crews had responded to a fire at 936 W. 49th St.
By Sunday, the department’s media alert about a reported fire in a three-story apartment complex included no address or general location of the blaze.
Cummings said the department is subject to the Federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, commonly known as HIPAA, “and is only permitted to release Protected Health Information for the purposes of treatment, billing and operations under the HIPAA Privacy Rule, without the patient’s permission.”
Police in Los Angeles distributed DVDs on Sunday featuring surveillance video of a man wanted for questioning in connection with a rash of suspicious car fires in the city.
The person of interest is a white male between 20 and 30 years old with a receding hairline and a shoulder-length ponytail, according to Officer Sara Faden. The man was seen on video Saturday after emerging on foot from inside an underground parking structure on Hollywood Boulevard that was the scene of a car fire.
Detectives estimated the man, who was wearing a bulky jacket, is between 5’6" and 6’1" tall.
Faden said investigators are asking for the public’s help in identifying the man on the video.
Detectives spent early Sunday analyzing security video camera footage and following up on other leads after a half dozen more vehicles were set on fire on New Year’s Eve.
The outbreak of arson fires has left a trail of smoldering debris in Hollywood, West Hollywood, North Hollywood and the Fairfax district of Los Angeles since Thursday.
Authorities said they were investigating a total of 43 suspicious fires. Most of those fires were set in parked cars. In several cases, flames have jumped to carports and apartment units.
"They are working on hundreds of clues, interviewing dozens of witnesses, picking up countless pieces of evidence," police Cmdr. Andrew Smith said of the detectives.
LAFD is keeping the public informed on its news & information page, Facebook, Twitter, breaking news widget, photostream and text and email alerts. Click here to learn more.
Now, comes word of an even older incident. One that occurred 13 years ago. And it involves the current LAFD chief, Brian Cummings. Cummings was the captain of the Venice fire station when the firefighters asked a bikini clad woman walking by to pose with them. According to KTTV-TV, at least one photo was taken of the woman appearing topless while on the fire truck.
So, who broke this news? Who was dredging up this dirt on a fire chief who took office just a month ago? The best we can tell from the articles we've read so far, the answer is Brian Cummings. Yes, it appears the chief blew the whistle on himself. In addition, despite the incident being well beyond that two year statute of limitations, the chief has also punished himself. He will be doing 120 hours of community service at a women's shelter and a youth mentoring program.
Here's some of what Chief Cummings had to say (from KTTV-TV):
"I apologize to the residents of Los Angeles, Mayor Villaraigosa and the brave men and women of the Los Angeles Fire Department for this incident," Cummings said.
Cummings called his part in the photo incident "irresponsible and inappropriate" and said he came forward with the picture for accountability.
"This is an opportunity for a teachable moment," Cummings said. "To be able to use my personal experience of what happened to me to be able to help my young firefighters, to keep them from making the same type of mistake is invaluable."
To anyone in a position of leadership who reads STATter911.com, do yourself a favor and take note of how Chief Cummings dealt with this situation. Even if it turns out that a reporter had been asking questions that brought this response from the chief (again, there is no indication of that at this point and, in fact, the chief said he self-reported this information to the department's professional standards division), the chief has shown great leadership in his actions and message to the department and has provided the rest of us with a great example of an extremely effective way to handle bad news.
Watch the video above and read the KTTV-TV and Contra Costa Times stories on the chief's announcement. Now, picture how this story would have looked to the public and his firefighters if Chief Cummings did what so many leaders still do when there is embarrassing news about them or the department (think of former Congressman Anthony Weiner). Here's what you don't see or hear in this story:
A reporter chasing the chief down the street yelling questions about some racy photos.
A reporter saying they have uncovered a department scandal.
The chief reading from a statement or issuing one through his press office and then refusing to answer questions.
A "no comment" from the chief or a PIO.
A "we can't talk about it because it's a personal matter" type statement issued from the press office.
A union president saying there is a double standard on how discipline is handled in the department.
What you do see is a chief in charge, admitting he made a mistake, taking responsibility, apologizing and then explaining his proposal on dealing with these type issues in the future.
There is a great deal to gain by releasing bad news yourself rather than wait for it to leak out to reporters. It allows you to take some control of the story and puts you ahead of the game in the ultimate goal of getting this news behind you so you can move forward. For this to be effective, it means you really have to come clean. If you don't get all of the bad news out, it can, and likely will, come back to haunt you.
Besides the problem of lawyers telling you not to say anything about a sensitive subject for fear it will cost you later in court, the biggest obstacles in handling bad news this way tend to be the ego and emotion of the person in charge (again, think Anthony Weiner). From what we can see in our vantage point all the way across the country, Chief Cummings had no problem with any of this. As long as there are no other similar skeletons in his closet that we are not hearing about, Chief Cummings has turned a story that had potential to seriously damage his career into one that will likely do him a world of good.
Above is helmet-cam video from the first of two fires last year at a pair of United Alloy and Metals facilities on East Slauson Avenue. The fires were a month apart and each included multiple explosions involving titanium. The first incident was on June 11.
That I can see, there are two explosions caught on the video above. The first is at 2:04 and the second at 3:30.
On Friday, June 11, 2010 at 11:00 AM, 36 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 16 LAFD Rescue Ambulances, 2 Arson Units, 1 Urban Search and Rescue Unit, 2 Hazardous Materials Teams, 1 Helicopter, 4 EMS Battalion Captains, 7 Battalion Chief Officer Command Teams and 1 Division Chief Officer Command Team, a total of 248 Los Angeles Fire Department personnel, as well as Los Angeles County Fire Department staff responding in Mutual Aid, all under the direction of LAFD Deputy Chief Mario Rueda, responded to a Major Emergency Industrial Fire at 900 East Slauson Avenue in South Los Angeles.
Responding to numerous cell phone callers providing non-specific information regarding one or more explosions and a well-established fire, Los Angeles Firefighters quickly arrived at United Alloys and Metals to find heavy fire at an industrial facility known for processing titanium and super alloy scrap.
Firefighters came to the immediate aid of a worker critically injured by an earlier explosion and fire, as they brought huge volumes of water to bear upon intense flames encompassing a 150' x 100' area that included titanium shavings in large bins and containers.
Despite the challenge of subsequent explosions and resultant precautions, the first arriving 160 firefighters were able to tame the blaze in just 2 hours and 22 minutes.
Along with the critically injured civilian, one Los Angeles Police Officer suffered a minor injury during the course of the fire. Both were taken to an area hospital by LAFD Ambulance.
Donald Austin needs to always keep what happened to him yesterday in mind once he takes over as the commissioner of the troubled Detroit Fire Department. Friday was the day the Detroit native, who retired in February as an assistant chief with the Los Angeles Fire Department, sat down with TV reporter Charlie LeDuff, the man two previous fire commissioners constantly ran from. And the fact that the former commissioners never understood how to handle LeDuff is one of the reasons Chief Austin has this new job.
What Chief Austin needs to remember is the demeanor, candor and poise he showed in the video above. Bottle it. You will need it.
A Dennis Walus photo of Detroit firefighters in action at a house fire on Tuesday. While LeDuff stays on the commissioners, Walus is out there, camera in hand, showing the daily work of Detroit firefighters. Click here for Dennis' photos.
The new commissioner will likely have a brief honeymoon with LeDuff and the rest of the press after he takes over the department on Monday. But it won't be long before LeDuff comes calling again with some internal document in his hand or video of a new scandal or serious problem. Chief Austin will do the department a world of good by handling the bad news exactly as he handled this interview, including the sense of humor he showed at the end of the clip.
And if Chief Austin really wants to minimize the impact of some future scandal he shouldn't wait until LeDuff shows up demanding to talk to the commissioner. In fact, it should be the other way around. When bad news strikes, the commissioner should be the one demanding to talk to LeDuff and other reporters, providing all of the gory details. Furthermore, if the chief really wants to tame LeDuff a bit, he should immediately dump a pile of paperwork on the reporter. Let Charlie see the entire paper trail showing what happened to the money to fix crumbling firehouses or maintain the city's ambulances. Get it all out so the problems of the past are truly that and they don't become the problems of the future for the new commissioner to constantly deal with.
I imagine that Charlie gave his cell phone number to Chief Austin yesterday. Memorize that number chief and use it often. It can be an important tool in changing the image and perception of the Detroit Fire Department.
The LAPD made it clear yesterday that arson has been ruled out in the fire last week that killed Firefighter Glenn Allen. But the circumstances surrounding the death of the 61-year-old Los Angeles firefighter’s death are still a part of an investigation that involves homicide detectives. The home is considered a crime scene with police on the scene around the clock.
News reports indicate that one angle being explored is the role the construction of the 12,500-square-foot home played in this tragedy. The home was to be the backdrop for a German reality TV show starring Heidi Klum similar to ”America’s Next Top Model”.
Sources told The Times that there is no evidence that the fire was intentionally set, but investigators are trying to determine whether the recently rebuilt house was constructed properly and in a sound and legal manner.
The fire appears to have started near a fireplace and then extended into the attic, according to L.A. City Fire Deputy Chief Mario Rueda.
Officials say arson is not a factor and apparently a plastic line in the home’s sprinkler system burned through and filled the ceiling with water.
The LAPD’s robbery-homicide division is now in charge of the investigation, in conjunction with the Los Angeles Building and Safety Department and the L.A. Fire Department.
“The city of Los Angeles has stringent building codes, and those building codes are made not only to protect residents, but also to protect our firefighters,” LAPD Chief Charlie Beck told KTLA. “So we’re looking into what exactly was the situation at that house.”
One community activist has already moved ahead to the next step and written a column considering the possibility that corners were cut to provide yet more mind numbing television. Click here for that opinion.
As news about the direction of the investigation broke, people gathered for a vigil last night at Fire Station 78 in Studio City to honor Firefighter Glenn Allen. That story is below. Firefighter Allen will be buried later today.
Just after noon today Firefighter Glenn L. Allen passed away at the Cedars Sinai Medical Center. The 61-year-old Allen was a 38-year veteran of the Los Angeles Fire Department and was to celebrate the birth of his first grandchild this week. According to news reports his daughter is expected to give birth to a boy on Saturday.
It is with great sadness that the men and women of the Los Angeles Fire Department inform you of the in Line of Duty Death of Los Angeles Firefighter Glenn Allen.
On Wednesday February 16, 2011, at 1119 hours ten fire companies, one heavy rescue, one USAR unit, seven rescue ambulances, seven battalion command teams, one division command team, three EMS battalion captains, and one arson unit responded to a reported structure Fire at 1546 North Viewsite Drive in the Hollywood Hills area of Los Angeles.
While Firefighters were performing their sworn duties, a partial ceiling collapse occurred, causing injury to four Los Angeles Firefighters and two Los Angeles County Firefighters. One of the injured Los Angeles Firefighters later succumbed to his injuries at 1215 hrs on Friday, February 18, 2011 at Cedars Sinai Medical Center.
As dictated by Fire Department policy, a formal and detailed investigation is underway to determine the exact nature of the cause of injuries sustained, as well as the precise cause and manner of the Firefighters death.
The men and women of the Los Angeles Fire Department thank you for your kind words and sentiment at this time of overwhelming sorrow and immense loss.
The Allen Family and the Los Angeles Fire Department has received a tremendous outpouring of support during this difficult time. Your Firefighters wish to thank you and express our deepest appreciation for all the kind words and gestures that have been provided.
A collapse at a Hollywood Hills house fire injured six firefighters around midnight. One of the firefighters is reported in grave condition.. The Los Angeles Fire Department held a press conference before dawn. Four of the firefighters are from LAFD, two are from Los Angeles County.
UPDATE (1:46 PM PST) from Devin Gales at LAFD Alert:
*UPDATE: 1561 N Viewsite Dr.* *FIRE WITH FIREFIGHTER INJURY* * LAFD firefighter is still in grave condition; family and Department members are by his side; one other firefighter is listed in good condition; two others were treated and released; LAFD Fire Chief awaiting additional information from doctors at Cedars-Siani Medical Center.
A veteran Los Angeles city firefighter who was close to retirement was injured early Thursday after a ceiling collapsed during a blaze at a two-story Hollywood Hills home.
Firefighters were on the roof of the home when it collapsed, Los Angeles Fire Department Capt. Tina Haro said. Colleagues had to use chainsaws to gain access to the critically injured firefighter and pull him out.
The audio above is not an official recording from LAFD. It is provided from radioreference.com via firefighterdispatch at YouTube.com. Gaps between transmissions have been removed compressing the time. The alert to the collapse occurs at 16:54 on this recording. This comment was submitted by LAFD Firefighter/Specialist Brian Humphrey this evening- ”David, Thank you for sharing word of this incident with your audience. As mentioned elsewhere (and as is our protocol), we wish to clarify that the authenticity and integrity of this amateur recording has not been validated. We will strive to keep you and your readers apprised of developments related to this incident in the hours, days and weeks to come. Fraternally Yours in Safety and Service.”
“He is fighting for his life at this time, he’s in grave condition,” Haro said. “The other firefighters are doing well.”
Two firefighters from the Los Angeles County Fire Department and three from the Los Angeles City Fire Department were injured, but are in good condition, Haro said.
Six firefighters were injured when a ceiling of one floor of a house in the Hollywood Hills collapsed on them while battling a house fire.
The fire broke out around 11:20 p.m. Wednesday on the 1500 block of North Viewsite Drive.
Neighbors said the house was recently built to showcase its spectacular view. It took firefighters about nine minutes to reach the three-story, 6,000-square-foot home. Firefighters worked on the ceiling, which was where the flames were coming from.
“Firefighters were in the process of gaining access to the fire. It was in the ceiling area, between the ceiling and the roof and the attic space and behind a wall near a fireplace,” said Los Angeles City Fire Dep. Chief Mario Rueda.
Early video from a house fire in Los Angeles: A neighbor is rolling as LAFD stretches the first lines at 1324 N. Sunderland Street in Echo Park on Friday. Check out the Fire Critic if you want to know more about the fire. Speaking of the Fire Critic, Rhett totally dissed me, and along with his panel of so-called experts or judges, went against my wishes and made STATter911.com a finalist in his Blog of the Century contest. My general philosophy is much like Grouch Marx’s (someone in Roanoke please explain who that was to Rhett), and I never want to join a club that would have someone like me as a member. That said, since they didn’t go for the nomination I suggested, I am not backing any candidates (probably smart considering my dismal record of being 0 for 2 in that arena). Click here to vote your conscience (or whoever offers you the most money). And next time Rhett, do away with the primaries and the hype and let the people speak.
Firefighter Mark Falkenhan to be buried today: If live streaming is available of the funeral for Lutherville VFC’s Mark Falkenhan we will, of course, have it here. For those attending the funeral at 11:00 this morning in Baltimore, click here for updated details.
Fire chief gets a lot of praise for failure: Typical negative spin from the reporter. The comments coming in to STATter911.com indicate that Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department Acting Chief Mark Bashoor showed a lot of leadership completing the CPAT course on Saturday. While he went into a little overtime, our readers thought it was an excellent showing for the 45-year-old chief. I think the next step, if we can get an EMS task force to standby, should be a regional chiefs competition (notice Statter isn’t pushing for a washed-up reporters event). Click here for the video of Chief Bashoor in action. It’s well worth seeing.
Two-alarm townhouse fire with flashover & three injured firefighters: We have video from Paul Lof and fireground audio from AlertPage.net of Saturday’s fire in Springfield, Virginia that critically injured a resident and left a trio of firefighters with minor injuries. Click here for our coverage.
Carrying Josephine Harris once again: We mentioned last week the passing of Josephine Harris, the woman who survived the crumbling of the WTC North Tower with the crew of FDNY’s Ladder 6. On Friday, those same firefighters who carried Ms. Harris to safety, carried their guardian angel once again. Click here to read and watch the story.
Come see me: I had a great and informative time in Phoenix last week for the IAFF-IAFC Labor Management Initiative gathering. I plan to write more about that in the coming days. Next month come join me in Virginia Beach, Virginia for the Virginia Fire Chief’s Association 2011 Mid-Atlantic Expo & Symposium (February 24-27). Click here for details and to register for the event.
UPDATE – FD to change logo: One of the topics I talked about in Phoenix is how you should deal with the press when there is an issue involving a department’s reputation. A Long Island fire company did the opposite of what I suggest and stretched the bad news into a multi-day story. After first threatening and running from the press, the Elmont FD has now decided to change its logo that included a version of the Confederate flag. Here’s the update. The outcome of this was quite predictable. The pattern is repeated daily. Learn from the mistake. Here’s my earlier assessment of the situation.
FossilMedic blows a kiss to our friends in NC: Nice little write-up by Mike Ward at Firegeezer about three lensmen from NC, Mike Legeros, Lee Wilson and Jeff Harkey. These guys work hard to grab the shots and keep people informed about the fire world in Raleigh, Wake County and beyond. Check it out. Okay Ward, now that you’ve made nice, let’s do a little investigating and find out what’s really going on. Don’t these three seem just a little too competent, talented and pleasant?
No jail time for firefighter who spooked herd: The plea deal apparently kept UK Firefighter Julian Lawford out of jail in that now infamous case of Lawford trying to drive his rig through a herd of cows crossing the road. The stampede left a farmer dead. Lawford was heading to a car crash with a child trapped. Here’s the latest.
No indictment against driver of vehicle in wreck that killed two Virginia firefighters: I missed this while traveling last week, but IronFiremen.com’s Willie Wines did not. A grand jury did not hand up an indictment against the driver of a vehicle connected to last summer’s tragic crash in Rocky Mount. Click here.
Manhole not for horses: Firefighters in Houston spent part of Saturday trying to rescue a horse that fell into an uncovered manhole. The horse had to be put down. Here’s the story.
Similar problem in Utah with much better results: On Sunday, Saratoga Springs firefighters rescued a young girl who fell into an uncovered manhole. Read the details.
Congratulations to some of the people who protect me: Fairfax County firefighters from Station 408 in Annandale received a Liberty Mutual Firemark Award for a fire a year ago this week. Check out the story from VAFireNews.com.
FDNY in action: The New York Daily News currently has this nicely shot fire video from Bedford-Stuyvesant posted on its website. But no date or exact location is provided that I can see.
On Sunday, November 21, 2010 at 7:51 AM, 11 Companies of Los Angeles Firefighters, 1 LAFD Rescue Ambulance, 2 Helicopters, 1 Battalion Chief Officer Command Team, 1 Division Chief Officer Command Team, under the direction of Assistant Chief Mark Stormes responded to a River Rescue in the LA River x 1st Street bridge near Boyle Heights.
Due to recent heavy rain, local flood control channels remain swelled with storm-water, causing the Los Angeles Fire Department to remain in a “River Rescue” preparedness status. Over 60 firefighters were rapidly and strategically placed near the LA River bank, on bridges, overpasses and in the air, all searching for an adult male wearing dark colored clothing that was swept away. In approximately 20 minutes the fast moving water carried the victim from the 1st Street bridge south until he was rescued near Bandini Boulevard and Washington Boulevard. A firefighter was skillfully lowered out of a LAFD helicopter into the rough water, where he grabbed hold of the 54 year-old and both were hoisted up. Once safe inside the helicopter the patient received medical aid and was transported to County USC hospital in stable condition. A special thanks is extended to our friends at the Los Angeles Police Department and Vernon Fire Department for their expert assistance.
Printing company fire in Chatsworth, California: Fire consumed a printing company yesterday evening. The fire was reported at 5:59 PM in the 100 X 80 building. Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Brian Humphrey has a very detailed account, pictures & more video at the LAFD blog. Here’s an excerpt- “Forcing their way through rolling steel and entry doors, firefighters discovered extreme fire conditions throughout a graphics design and direct mail marketing firm heavily loaded with combustible printing and printed materials. The offensive interior attack on the fire proved short lived as flames roared through the roof, compromising the structure within ten minutes of the 9-1-1 call that brought scores of Los Angeles Firefighters to the scene.” Click here for more video.
Election woes: In Stockton, California firefighters are quite worried over the passage of Measure H which gives the city new ways to control staffing and cut costs. Read and watch the story.
Crane rescue: Continuing with our California theme, click here for pictures and details of the rescue of two people injured on top of a 200-foot tall construction crane in Long Beach.
Neil Sedaka was wrong! Not everyone loves the calendar girl. Controversy has stalled the release of a calendar in Australia that features pictures of female firefighters from ACT Rural Fire Service. If it is delayed too long the calendar's only use may be those pictures. Click the image for more.
Virginia department adds positions because of volunteer shortage: Four part time firefighters will be hired in Warren County due to concerns over the dwindling number of volunteers. Here’s the story.
One dead in overnight two-alarm fire in Baltimore: Early details from a 2:30 AM fire that damaged three townhomes in the 7000 block of McClean Boulevard in Northeast Baltimore. One man was found dead inside. Click here for more.
Union head fights suspension over talking to the press: In Ottawa a disciplinary hearing is underway as Stéphane Noël, president of the union in Gatineau tries to overturn a six-month suspension for telling reporters about water pressure issues following a church fire. Here’s more.
6:30 AM “home inspection” leads to arrest of man claiming to be firefighter: In Adams County, Pennsylvania a strange story of a man claiming to be a firefighter walking into the bedroom of a man’s home. Read more.
911 not that important: The mayor of Alsip, Illinois, a former firefighter, is stunned voters failed to approve a fifty-cent per month surcharge on their phone bills to help fund 911. The mayor points out you can’t buy a Coke for that price. Check it out.
Woman says she wasn’t about to jump but was sure was glad to see firefighters: In the video above, WUSA9.com talked to a young woman who was on the phone with here sister doubtful that DC firefighters would be able to get to her as smoke filled her 10th floor apartment on Tuesday. Along with the previous raw video and fireground audio, we have added interviews with some of the firefighters who helped in the rescues during Tuesday’s fire at 1444 Rhode Island Avenue, NW. The firefighters tell the story of a commercial vehicle that was jammed into a dumpster in an effort to get rear position for a ladder truck. Click here. Also, click here for a slideshow.