Blog Archives

Fire Engineering Blog Talk Radio about MAYDAY Incident

In case you missed it here is the Fire Engineering Blog Talk Radio Traditions Training Tuesday where we talked about the fire at #87 Herrington Drive in PG County Maryland that put my friend Danny McGown in the burn center. Listen in as those who were there go over just what went down, step by step, and hopefully it will help you prepare incase you are placed in that position, God forbid.

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/btrplayer.swf?file=http%3A%2F%2Fwww%2Eblogtalkradio%2Ecom%2Ffireengineeringtalkradio%2Fplay%5Flist%2Exml%3Fshow%5Fid%3D2253071&autostart=true&bufferlength=5&volume=80&borderweight=1&bordercolor=#999999&backgroundcolor=#FFFFFF&dashboardcolor=#0098CB&textcolor=#F0F0F0&detailscolor=#FFFFFF&playlistcolor=#999999&playlisthovercolor=#333333&cornerradius=10&callback=http://www.blogtalkradio.com/FlashPlayerCallback.aspx&C1=7&C2=6042973&C3=31&C4=&C5=&C6=&hostname=fireengineeringtalkradio&hosturl=http://www.blogtalkradio.com/fireengineeringtalkradio

Listen to internet radio with fireengineeringtalkradio on Blog Talk Radio

Also, here is the Radio Transmissions from that fire:

“THE HEIGHTS” MAKES A STRONG SHOWING IN FIREHOUSE MAGAZINE: 2ND BUSIEST LADDER TRUCK AND 2ND BUSIEST FIREHOUSE IN THE NATION

From 30Engine.com:

The 30th year of the National Run Survey from Firehouse Magazine highlights many categories within the fire service including busiest Engine, Ladder, Rescue Squad and more. Departments from around the country submit their run totals to be ranked among their peers across the US and Canada. Only the top unit in each class from each department is included in the results listing published in the August issue of Firehouse Magazine. The District of Columbia made a strong showing again this year and the members of “The Heights” are proud to announce their inclusion in the fabled “list”. For the year 2010, Truck Company 17 was the 2nd busiest ladder company in the Nation, responding to assist the citizens of the “East End” 4,496 times last year. “The Heights” complement of Engine 30, Truck 17, Ambulance 30 and Medic 30 again took honors as the 2nd busiest station in the Nation with the 4 units recording a total of 18,531 responses. The Battalion Chief responsible for the East End crews, BFC 2, recorded a 19th ranked 2,062 runs in 2010. The Officers and Members of “The Heights” are extremely proud of the recognition from Firehouse Magazine for their long nights and proven dedication to the citizens of DC and thank them for the honor.

FROM HUMBLE BEGINNINGS COME HUMBLE MEN

Here is an interview that demonstrates the pure love of the job that helps bring the true spirit of the fire department back to light for me as it should for everyone else. You didnt hear any “we shouldn’t have been in theres'”, any bullshit about “victim survivability profiling”  and you sure as shit didn’t hear any Monday morning quarterbacking about whether or not we should search vacant homes. To me it simply says, “It is what it is and we’d do it again”. These 2 men exemplify what it means to me to be a fireman and I’m proud to work in a department full of them. Watch and learn.

“I’m no hero, but I served in a company of them” – Major Dick Winters, Easy Company.


http://www.myfoxdc.com/video/videoplayer.swf?dppversion=10588

Injured Firefighters Talk of Road to Recovery: MyFoxDC.com

“SUMMER IN THE SECOND” – ANOTHER BUSY TOUR AT 17 TRUCK

Well this 24 hour tour had its share of excitement, from a special showing of Hangover 2 with the fellas, a police chase that ended too soon, Ambulance 30 getting passed by a PG police chase on the way to the hospital and rounding it all out with a first due fire. It’s apparent that the old adage about summer time in the Second Battalion may hold true for yet another year in a row. I am just going to keep holding on to that tiller wheel and see where it takes me. 

Here are just the 2 stories reposted from Engine 30s website. I have more helmet cam footage from this fire as well but I doubt time will allow that to make it to your screen anytime soon. So for now, enjoy the pics.

TRUCK 17 RUNS ONE OVERTURNED AND 2 TRAPPED AFTER POLICE CHASE ENDS IN SOUTHEAST

During the early afternoon hours Engine 19 was dispatched on the local alarm for an auto accident in the area of Randle Circle and Minnesota Ave. Southeast. Engine 19 arrived shortly after to find a police chase that ended with the dipper suspect t-boning another truck and putting it on its side. The suspect fled but they left behind a person trapped in each car. Engine 19 requested the rescue assignment bringing Truck 17, Rescue Squad 3 and others to the scene. Truck 17 arrived on scene an set up a safety perimeter and assisted with patient care as Squad 3 split their crews to free the victim in the car and stabilize the overturned truck. Once the door was removed from the car the crew took the roof off of the truck and removed that victim as well. Engine 19 stood by with a handline to support the extrication. Units picked up and returned to service a short time later.   
 
At 12:44 hrs units with the Second Battalion were alerted for a reported house on fire in the 4500 block of Grant St. NE. Engine 27 arrived to find a one story single family home with heavy fire showing and extension to the B-bravo exposure. As Engine 27 stretched their line to the fire building Truck 17’s crew laddered and quickly searched the exposure building, finding no immediate extension into the structure. Engine 30 reported to the rear and found a similar situation, stretching their line and getting water on the fire. Very early into the incident the fire building was deemed a defensive operation and larger lines were put into service by the crews of Engine 27, 30 and Truck 17 to knock down the bulk of the fire. Truck 17 put the ladder pipe in the air but the extra water was not needed as the fire was knocked down. Crews opened up the outer walls on the exposure building and finding only minor extension the incident was scaled back.  

“Aggressive Searches” Fire Engineering Talk Radio Episode 38 featuring Traditions Training

Episode 38 Fire Engineering Talk Radio

In case you missed it here is the latest episode of Fire Engineering Talk Radio featuring myself and the rest of the Traditions Training crew as we tackle the topic of “Aggressive Searches). Its always a fun time getting to chat with the brothers. Just ignore the porn star voice at the beginning and the rest should be semi-entertaining.

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/btrplayer.swf

Listen to internet radio with fireengineeringtalkradio on Blog Talk Radio

ROOM OFF WITH PEOPLE TRAPPED FOR THE HEIGHTS: 5105 F STREET SOUTHEAST

The following is a repost from http://www.30Engine.com for the fire we had last tour. A bunch of interesting talking points came out of this fire so I will try to post some stuff up in the next week or so. My helmet cam footage as the Tillerman is pretty dark so I doubt I will have anything video related.

Fire Showing from Side C-Charlie

The East End Crew with Chief Del Balzo on what might be his last fire with DC

Story from 30 Engine:

Just after 2100 hrs units with the second and third battalion were alerted for the report of a building fire at 5105 F St. SE. Engine 30 arrived on the scene and reported a 3 story garden style apartment building with smoke showing from the roof area. Truck 17 arrived just behind them and were greeted by several residents stating that there were people trapped on the upper floors. As the Engine crew advanced the 200ft 1 1/2″ preconnected handline into the building Truck 17s crew worked to ladder the building and vent the structure. Interior crews located a room off in an apartment on the second floor (although labeled 102) and made quick work of it. Rescue Squad 3 removed one patient with smoke inhalation from a top floor apartment (labeled 204). Although a second alarm was requested it was quickly returned as the incident was deemed under control. Truck 17 with the help of Engine 30 and Engine 8 (RIT) threw 175′ of ground ladders to the building with Truck 16 and Engine 27 laddering the rear with additional ladders. Great job by all crews involved especially Battalion Fire Chief #2 Del Balzo who celebrated his retirement just that very afternoon with the fellas of East End.

  

A View from the Tillercage: A Brief Exercise in Rhetoric

An exercise in rhetoric inspired by the writings of Matt “Maine” Hall. His recent facebook descriptions of late night ramblings from the ghetto of our home in Landover has inspired me to try my hand. Here is a late night rambling from a memorial weekend spent in the back of Truck 17.

For Maine:

Our chariot comes to a stop just shy of the entrance to the apartment complex, the heroes of “The Heights” answer the never ending call for service, this time its the ever elusive activated CO detector. I watch as my crew makes their way up the hill towards the mountain of brick and mortar known as Benning Park Apartments. Heavy eyelids give way to an unrelenting stare as i catch myself gazing longingly through the dust covered window of my tillermans perch. The iridescent hue of a lone streetlight joins with the familiar reds and blues of a passing police cruiser, together they bring identity to the darken street sign. 4900 G st. SE. My temporary inhabitancy now has a name.

The air is cool and crisp as it recoils from the recently passed storm. The night is alive with activity, people pass but seldom wave, families and felons share the sidewalk together as they stroll into the emptiness of the East End night. My thoughts drift away from this place much the same as the dreams of the areas youth, away to a place far removed from the brutal realities of “The Heights”. Thoughts of a future with manageable hours, of nights with adequate sleep, of holidays at home with family and friends. The recurring thud of a car stereo gains strength as it closes on my position, the roar of exhaust from a passing donked-out caprice jerks me back to my observatory high atop 17 truck.

My attention shifts to a conveniently placed pair of “Air Jordans” dangling from the electric line above my head, swaying gingerly in the evening breeze, beckoning to this spot those in search of a quick high to lift them from this place. My band of brothers makes their way back down the hill from the building entrance, laughing and jostling, bonded together by the experiences and the tragedies they’ve shared, forged into friends at trail by fire. They know how quickly the song can change, how that next call for service might find them staring the red devil and his fiery minions square in the face, daring my brothers to enter in protection of these same families and felons that call East End their home. This fire forcing them to rise up to their best when DC citizens are at their worst. These men, these firemen, know that only the bond of brotherhood will bring them through the flames and back alive.

I chuckle to myself as a new thought creeps into mind. These moments i will miss, this ghetto i will miss, these brothers I will miss…

Chucky Ryan gets Released from the Burn Center

Well after 2 months of long nights surrounded by friends and a hard fought healing process, Firefighter Chucky Ryan has finally returned home from the burn center. Chucky was burned along with 4 other firefighters searching for victims during a house fire in Truck 17’s first due. His first stop? Rescue 3 to see the brothers of course. Here’s to a great guy who’s love for the job infects all  those around him. Welcome Home Chucky, see you inside a burning southeast rowhome soon.

Check out this great video from Channel 9:

GENERALS PLAYERS HELP SIT HOSPITAL WATCH FOR RECOVERING FIREFIGHTER

Here is a story from the DC Generals site about some time spent with Firefighter Chucky Ryan who was burned in a house fire in Truck 17’s first due. Chucky is a great guy and a hell of a fireman, it was truly a tough experience for me to spend the night in his ICU room and see him in so much pain. It brings back the reality of why the Generals play to raise money for the burn foundation. As a member of the DC Firefighters Burn Foundations Family Services Team I see first hand the great job this organization does for the family’s of our injured firefighters in their time of need. Watching the Royal Wedding from Chucky’s room and to sit alongside our Brave Hero was a truly humbling experience. Chucky still continues to recover, keep him in your prayers.

From the DC Generals: 

As Firefighter Charles Ryan continues to undergo multiple surgery’s to repair the burns to his body, members of the District of Columbia Fire Department along with members of the DC FF Burn Foundation Family Services Unit sit constant watch over their injured brother. Among these vigilant volunteers are several players from the DC Generals Police and Fire Football Team. Showing again just how important raising money for the Burn Foundation is in this time of need. The Foundation helps provide rooms for family members, food for Chucky and his visitors, state of the art equipment for the burn unit at Washington Hospital Center and much more. Our prayers are with Firefighter Ryan on his long road to recovery.

 
<!– –>

GWU STUDENTS RAISE OVER $37,000 FOR THE BURN FOUNDATION AND I GOT TO DANCE

So in what has become an extremely successful tradition over the years, the GWU Chi Omega Firefighter Challege has raised tens of thousands of dollars in the name of the DC Firefighters Burn Foundation. The weekend long event features prepaired skits, a field day and much more. Normally the videos are filmed at some preppy station up in Northwest DC, but this year the brave young lads made a trip East of the River to visit the fellas of 30 Engine and 17 Truck. Here is the result…..