National News

Friday, April 16, 2021

San Diego firefighters simulate airport emergency

VIDEO: Most San Diego firefighters spend the majority of their career fighting house and brush fires, but this week, dozens are practicing for something very different - a plane on fire at the airport. “In a house is what we call a Class A fire, typically materials, linens, and wood,” Capt. Derrin Austin with San Diego Fire-Rescue said. “With aircraft firefighting, it's the fuels, which are different than vehicle fuels, and more than likely hazardous materials that are part of the cargo.” Also different, planes can be packed with people who are panicking to get out. “One of the challenges is balancing getting in to put the fire out and staying out of the way of the passengers and crew that have to evacuate from the plane,” Capt. Austin added. San Diego Fire-Rescue has a station at the airport and the crews there have to go through Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighter training every year.
KFMB-TV CBS/CW 8 San Diego

Florida Rapper Involved In Fiery Tractor Trailer Crash On Miami’s Airport Expressway

VIDEO: All lanes of SR-112/Airport Expressway are back open after a fiery crash involving a tractor-trailer and a Florida rapper shut them down early Thursday morning. The accident happened near NW 12th Avenue shortly after 3:30 a.m. The driver of the tractor-trailer, who lost his shoe escaping his burning truck, said the other vehicle involved had been speeding on the shoulder when the crash happened. The tractor-trailer ended up hitting a concrete barrier. Officials said the tractor-trailer carrying about 100 gallons of fuel and erupted into flames after the crash. “I kicked the door and then I was able to throw myself from the cab,” said the truck’s driver Reynier Acosta. The four people involved in the crash were not seriously hurt, according to Miami Fire Rescue. One of the people in the SUV was North Miami rapper Tafia, according to CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald. He posted on his Instagram Thursday morning that he was leaving the hospital.

Partnership between Tennessee city and utilities will allow emergency services to operate without power

Chattanooga city leaders came together Thursday afternoon to discuss their commitment to public safety and emergency response. This project is called Power to Protect. It's a joint initiative between the city and EPB. Mayor Andy Berke said he doesn't know of another community in the country doing this. The project is using solar energy and pairing it with different technologies to increase the resiliency of our power supply to our public safety agencies. This will pay dividends when catastrophic events happen in Chattanooga. "Extreme weather events are more and more common than ever before,” Mayor Berke said. The Tennessee Valley knows that well. Last year’s Easter tornadoes highlighted just how devastating bad weather events can be. The city has been working on a plan to have better communication with first responders in those terrifying moments for the past few years. They did that by partnering with EPB to build a microgrid.
WRCB-TV NBC 3 Chattanooga

Texas 911 Dispatch manager talks evolution of service

They sit behind multiple computer screens their entire shift, but they could save your life. They are the operators of 911 dispatch. And although National Public Safety Telecommunications Week is under way, their jobs have not become any less stressful. Longview Police Department Communications Manager Matt Ainsworth says if anyone deserves a week named for them, it’s 911 telecommunicators. “It’s a week that we set aside every year to acknowledge who do this very, very difficult job,” Ainsworth said. He agrees that it’s right up there with air traffic control. “High stress, technology dependence, shift work, long hours; it’s definitely something else,” Ainsworth said. That something else has gone from two monitors to six over the years, and they keep an eye on everything. “You’re monitoring the phones, you’re monitoring GPS, you’re monitoring radios. Multi-tasking is absolutely the heart of what we do back there,” Ainsworth said.
KLTV ABC 7 Tyler

Cleveland fire union raises safety concerns over aging fire trucks

The Cleveland Fire Fighter's Association said it has safety concerns when it comes to the city's aging fleet of fire trucks. Fire union President Francis Lally pointed to Cleveland's latest annual report on the fire department, which indicated 13 of the city's 42 fire trucks are listed in "poor condition," with eight of the trucks having more than 120,000 miles on them. “I’m not only worried about the safety of our crews out on the streets, but for the citizens and the residents out there, because we have more and more people living downtown, we have more and more people living in high-rise buildings,” Lally said. “It is a safety issue, some of these pumpers that are out there right now have failed their annual inspection. Which means they can’t pump at the pressures that are needed, say for high-rise fires.” “By the city’s own metrics they’re in poor condition. It’s not just one, it’s not just two, it’s not just three that need to be replaced on an annual basis, it’s over a dozen.”
WEWS-TV ABC 5 Cleveland

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Historic ship provides unique training opportunity for Florida rescue teams

VIDEO: Pasco County rescue crews got a unique training experience Wednesday aboard the historic American Victory Ship docked in Tampa. Pasco County Fire Rescue Special Operations Division bought all three shifts of crews to do some advanced confined-space training 60 feet down in the ship’s hull – training they might not otherwise be able to get at home. "It’s amazing to me because we’re on part of living history right here, on board the American Victory Ship," offered Carry Epperson with PCFR. "To get to train on their ship that’s been through so much, it’s just amazing." It’s very critical for Pasco County Fire Rescue be able to have this kind of training because they can encounter some very unique situations. The scenario that the firefighters faced Wednesday aboard the ship was a victim who was overcome by fumes down in the ship’s hull.
WTVT-TV Fox 13 Tampa

Fire causes heavy damage to apartment complex in Texas

VIDEO: A fire caused heavy damage Wednesday morning to an apartment complex on the city’s North Side. When firefighters arrived at the complex in the 3200 block of Nacogdoches Road, they found heavy flames and called in a second alarm. San Antonio Fire Chief Charles Hood said between 60 to 100 occupants will need to find another place to live. The Red Cross will help them find temporary shelter, Hood said. No injuries were reported but firefighters rescued about 10 pets, Hood said. This is at least the third large fire reported at the complex since September 2019. A lightning strike caused a fire at the complex last April. The cause of Wednesday’s fire is under investigation.
KSAT-TV ABC 12 San Antonio

Bill passed by West Virginia Legislature will make PTSD a compensable injury for first responders

Some associate post traumatic stress disorder with members of the military, but those on the frontlines at home also deal with it. “I’m a retired firefighter myself, and after 20 years on the job I’ve seen two of my brothers lost to suicide and two other suicide attempts,” Robert Coleman said. After several years, one bill finally passed through the West Virginia Legislature that lawmakers believe will save lives. The bill is inspired by Coleman’s son, who took his own life after being diagnosed with PTSD from work-related trauma. “After I retired, my oldest son, Chris, joined the fire department,” Coleman said. “He had five years on the job and two and a half years ago he took his life.” In 2018, Coleman took time off in an attempt to get help, but used up all of his vacation and sick time. “Then he was on no-pay status and he didn’t have much of a choice, he had to go back to work,” Coleman said. “He wasn’t quite ready for it.”
WCHS-TV ABC/FOX 8 Charleston

Recruit New York campaign returning after a year away

Seven volunteer fire companies in Niagara County are signed up to take part in the 12th annual Recruit NY Weekend organized by the Firemen's Association of the State of New York. Recruit NY Weekend is April 24-25. Participating companies include Rapids, Middleport, Terry's Corners, Shawnee, Adams, Active Hose and Wendelville. “Hundreds of volunteer fire departments across New York will be participating in Recruit NY. We invite all New Yorkers to attend an open house and safely experience what it means to be a volunteer firefighter,” FASNY President John Farrell said in an announcement. “After the year we have been through, Recruit NY weekend can provide people with the opportunity to interact with the responders who are dedicated to protecting them.” FASNY reports that firefighters are responding to more calls now than ever, and the calls are increasingly diverse.
Lockport Union-Sun Journal

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