VIDEO: A nine-alarm fire tore through a Lower Mills neighborhood in Dorchester on Saturday, displacing 14 residents, according to Boston fire officials.
The Boston Fire Department said nine people, including seven firefighters, were treated and transported to a hospital by Boston Emergency Medical Services. The injuries are considered non-life-threatening.
Fire officials said crews responded at 4:45 p.m. to the area of 39 Old Morton St., which is near the Mattapan neighborhood line. Witnesses told WCVB and investigators that they heard a loud boom.
The fire started in a vacant home that was under construction. Upon arrival, firefighters found the home fully engulfed in flames, which eventually spread to seven adjacent homes.
WCVB-TV NBC 5
VIDEO: The union that represents state firefighters is airing commercials in Sacramento this week with a two-pronged message: Cal Fire’s firefighters are overworked and you should take steps to protect your home.
The 30- and 60-second spots are meant to be informative, but Cal Fire Local 2881 President Tim Edwards said more aggressive commercials could follow if fire conditions worsen without the state dedicating more money to firefighters.
“If we start dragging into another long work period, we’ll get into another thing saying look how long we’re working at a time because of staffing shortages,” Edwards said.
At current staffing levels, firefighters can spend weeks away from home when wildfires break out, Edwards said.
The union has been pressing the state to boost hiring, pointing out fire conditions are remain dangerous while Cal Fire has fewer firefighters and more ground to cover than in the past.
The Sacramento Bee - Metered Site
After a rash of devastating fires over the past year, including one that claimed the life of an 89-year-old woman, some city residents are calling for a career company to take over the local volunteer fire department.
But the city is standing behind its crew, arguing a career department isn’t necessary with mutual aid agreements already in place. The city is also reviewing its building codes and other ways to mitigate the disastrous effects of structure fires in the densely developed seaside resort.
The city is dealing with something many other South Jersey shore towns deal with — balancing the needs of the community while relying on a volunteer service that is becoming smaller each year.
“Departments nationwide are trying everything they can to recruit and retain volunteers, and it’s just a never-ending battle that isn’t getting won,” Cape May County Fire Marshal Connie Johnson said. “Here, our numbers have been declining, as far as going through the academy. Our last class was 18. Back in the day, 20 years ago, I can remember having three dozen in a class.”
Press of Atlantic City
The Uniformed Firefighters Association of Greater New York has come out in strong support of state-level legislation aimed at limiting the ability of real estate developers to use "mechanical void spaces" to game zoning codes into allowing them to construct taller buildings.
In a strongly-worded memo, circulated by the Friends of the Upper East Side Historic Districts group, the Fire Department of New York union says, "Void spaces, often entire floors in buildings put hazardous equipment such as High Voltage Air Conditioning and heating equipment in the middle of buildings, many floors above street level. These void floors bring fire hazards into areas of a building where it is most difficult for Firefighters to fight these types of equipment fires."
Two legislative proposals, Senate Bill S3820A and Assembly Bill A5026A, aim to fine-tune how municipalities define a project's floor area.
The Bath Fire & Rescue Department has adopted a high-tech solution to protect their firefighters from carcinogens. By adding the “FireLinc” app to its new extractor system, Bath becomes the first department in the state to track detailed information about every wash.
“In the past few years, cancer has been recognized as one of the major killers of career and volunteer firefighters,” said Bath Fire Chief Lawrence Renaud. In fact, a study by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, completed in 2015, concluded that firefighters face a 9% increase in cancer diagnosis, and a 14% increase in cancer-related deaths, compared to the general U.S. population.
“It’s the fire service’s responsibility to change past practices that have been proven to cause firefighter cancer, like wearing contaminated turnout gear. By lessening the exposure to contamination, we hope to have a positive impact on the post fire service quality of life,” said Renaud.
City of Bath