On the Job: Rochester: Rochester Crews Wage 7-Hour Firefight At Abandoned Auto-Parts Factory

John Caufield reports on a fire that became one of the largest incidents in the history of the Rochester Fire Department, challenging its resources, command structure and pre-planned strategies.


Rochester, NY, like many other U.S. cities, has many large, vacant or abandoned industrial complexes. These structures, once bustling with productive activity, now stand empty, contaminated and in disrepair. In spite of the best efforts to secure the buildings, they often become havens for the...


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John Caufield is an 18-year veteran of the Rochester, NY, Fire Department, and the Group 2 deputy chief. He has an associate’s degree in fire protection from Monroe Community College, a bachelor of science degree in organizational management from Roberts Wesleyan College and a bachelor of science degree in fire science from the University of Maryland. Caufield is enrolled in the Executive Fire Officer Program at the National Fire Academy and is working toward his master’s degree in public administration.