1. #1

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    Default Trouble with Chief over Helmet Cam

    Hey there!

    I got a helmet videocam for Xmas.

    Mounted the thing on my helmet,it's held
    in place with a rubber band so it will not
    possibly entangle me.

    Anyway the new Volunteer Chief is ****ed and for no reason nor
    no explanation has suggested I remove it.

    I simply wanted to record some of the crazy crap
    we see and maybe post something on youtube. I
    thought it might be helpful for training too.

    I am a volunteer,any suggestions on what to do?

  2. #2
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    Default Take it off !

    If the Chief has authority over the members of the FD, and he said "take it off" then take it off. Besides if you video "somethings" and post them anywhere your liable to get your "department" sued. Notice I said the "department" will get sued because they are responsible in most cases for the actions of thier members.
    Take Care & be SAFE
    Bert

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    Quote Originally Posted by rfburns View Post
    Hey there!

    I got a helmet videocam for Xmas.

    Mounted the thing on my helmet,it's held
    in place with a rubber band so it will not
    possibly entangle me.

    Anyway the new Volunteer Chief is ****ed and for no reason nor
    no explanation has suggested I remove it.

    I simply wanted to record some of the crazy crap
    we see and maybe post something on youtube. I
    thought it might be helpful for training too.

    I am a volunteer,any suggestions on what to do?
    Here's my suggesiton.

    Get out your FF1 book and review the sections on:

    Chain of Command
    Discipline
    Authority of the Chief Officer

    Then take the stupid thing off your helment and shut up about it.
    PROUD, HONORED AND HUMBLED RECIPIENT OF THE PURPLE HYDRANT AWARD - 10/2007.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgeWendtCFI View Post
    Here's my suggesiton.

    Get out your FF1 book and review the sections on:

    Chain of Command
    Discipline
    Authority of the Chief Officer

    Then take the stupid thing off your helment and shut up about it.

    George.. you are making the assumption that his FD requires FF1... it may the the case of you are a warm body...welcome to the VFD.

    By the way, rfburns.... ditch the helmet cam. There's enough stupidity on YouTube, and you just might find yourself being served in a lawsuit.
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
    Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

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    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgeWendtCFI View Post
    Here's my suggesiton.

    Get out your FF1 book and review the sections on:

    Chain of Command
    Discipline
    Authority of the Chief Officer

    Then take the stupid thing off your helment and shut up about it.
    I second the motion. All those in favor, say aye!

    Quote Originally Posted by rfburns View Post
    I am a volunteer,any suggestions on what to do?
    What are you implying by this? That just because you are a volunteer that makes it ok for you to disregard a verbal order issued by a Senior Line Officer? I dont care if you are a volly, a career man, or Gumby, your place in this world is not to question orders, but to follow them. The sooner you realize this, the sooner you will get along just fine.
    Last edited by FWDbuff; 01-25-2009 at 11:03 AM.
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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    Prudent and controlled use of helmet-cams can provide for some fantastic training opportunities. Like PD's have found with dash-cams, in MOST cases, the camera will catch FF's doing the right thing! I cases where it catches the "less than right", then the budding YouTube photo-journalist is usually involved, and is therefore liable, or if he was just standing around and pointing his head in the right direction, then he may have a liability for being a trained person who did nothing to fix something going bad.

    If you REALLY still want to use the helmet-cam (for the RIGHT reasons), then my suggestion would be to meet with the Chief and the Training Officer. Give them FULL ACCESS and editing rights to anything that you shoot - after all, when you are working there is an employee / employer relationship that exists (even for volunteers!), so even though it's "your" camera, it's "their" work product.

    If you are permitted to go ahead with this, the primary purpose should be something benificial to your department, and NOT just to see if you can post some bizarre happening (typically edited down so that there is no real context) on YouTube.

    If, in the end, they still say "no", then follow your orders.
    "If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking."

    George S. Patton

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    Quote Originally Posted by rfburns View Post
    Hey there!

    I got a helmet videocam for Xmas.

    Mounted the thing on my helmet,it's held
    in place with a rubber band so it will not
    possibly entangle me.

    Anyway the new Volunteer Chief is ****ed and for no reason nor
    no explanation has suggested I remove it.

    I simply wanted to record some of the crazy crap
    we see and maybe post something on youtube. I
    thought it might be helpful for training too.

    I am a volunteer,any suggestions on what to do?
    Did the old Chief approve? Is your department a dictatorship or a democracy? Or better yet, become the chief!

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    [QUOTE=rfburns;1025194]Hey there!


    I simply wanted to record some of the crazy crap
    we see and maybe post something on youtube. I
    thought it might be helpful for training too. QUOTE]

    That might be what the chiefs worried about...I dont see a problem with the use of helmet cams...but if used wrongfully it opens your department up to a whole new can of worms...Such as that one department I forget...a while back posted a video of them removing a deceased person from a house fire if I am correct?
    Andrew
    Firefighter/EMT
    New Jersey

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    Troll alert!

  10. #10
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    Man the harpoons.

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    Tell the chief to kiss your ***; it's your helmet, and you'll do what you want with it. Maybe the next department you apply to will let you keep it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ThNozzleman View Post
    Tell the chief to kiss your ***; it's your helmet, and you'll do what you want with it. Maybe the next department you apply to will let you keep it.
    Good point, we should be able to put anything we want to on our helmets. Heck we should even be able to paint them as we see fit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ThNozzleman View Post
    Tell the chief to kiss your ***; it's your helmet, and you'll do what you want with it. Maybe the next department you apply to will let you keep it.
    Yeah. On second thought I change my original answer. Walk up to the Chief, push your index finger into his chest, while saying what Nozz suggested.
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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    If you wanted it to just post crazy things that happen to your dept. on youtube, all I can say is get a life and quit your dept.

    Now if you explained to the chief you wanted to use it as a training aid for YOUR dept. only and never post them on a website. I see no problem with it. but you sound like you have WHACKER written all over yourself and I think the chief is looking out for the dept.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DFDCar1 View Post
    Prudent and controlled use of helmet-cams can provide for some fantastic training opportunities. Like PD's have found with dash-cams, in MOST cases, the camera will catch FF's doing the right thing! I cases where it catches the "less than right", then the budding YouTube photo-journalist is usually involved, and is therefore liable, or if he was just standing around and pointing his head in the right direction, then he may have a liability for being a trained person who did nothing to fix something going bad.

    If you REALLY still want to use the helmet-cam (for the RIGHT reasons), then my suggestion would be to meet with the Chief and the Training Officer. Give them FULL ACCESS and editing rights to anything that you shoot - after all, when you are working there is an employee / employer relationship that exists (even for volunteers!), so even though it's "your" camera, it's "their" work product.

    If you are permitted to go ahead with this, the primary purpose should be something benificial to your department, and NOT just to see if you can post some bizarre happening (typically edited down so that there is no real context) on YouTube.

    If, in the end, they still say "no", then follow your orders.
    DFDCar1: I tip my helmet to you, Sir. This is the 1st post by a guy asking a question thatís important to him and you gave a great answer without being condescending or name calling.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by rfburns View Post
    Hey there!

    I got a helmet videocam for Xmas.

    Mounted the thing on my helmet,it's held
    in place with a rubber band so it will not
    possibly entangle me.

    Anyway the new Volunteer Chief is ****ed and for no reason nor
    no explanation has suggested I remove it.

    I simply wanted to record some of the crazy crap
    we see and maybe post something on youtube. I
    thought it might be helpful for training too.

    I am a volunteer,any suggestions on what to do?
    I suggest you listen to the Chief.
    I am now a past chief and the views, opinions, and comments are mine and mine alone. I do not speak for any department or in any official capacity. Although, they would be smart to listen to me.

    "The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it's still on the list."

    "When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water."

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    I completely agree with DFDCar1.

    The fact that the gear you wear is more than likely property of the fire department and its the Chiefs job to ensure all firefighters are safe and to protect the Department from any lawsuits.

    My question to you is did you just put the cam on your helmet or did you actually ask the Chief if you could put it on your helmet?

    Just my .02 worth
    Last edited by rschultzjr; 01-25-2009 at 01:22 PM. Reason: Add

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    Quote Originally Posted by rfburns View Post
    Hey there!

    I got a helmet videocam for Xmas.

    Mounted the thing on my helmet,it's held
    in place with a rubber band so it will not
    possibly entangle me.

    Anyway the new Volunteer Chief is ****ed and for no reason nor
    no explanation has suggested I remove it.

    I simply wanted to record some of the crazy crap
    we see and maybe post something on youtube.
    I
    thought it might be helpful for training too.

    I am a volunteer,any suggestions on what to do?
    Do you want to know why when I was chief I would have told you no and then enforced it strictly? The highlighted line above. I have no desire to be some stupid out of context "crazy Crap" posting on youtube. Especially since as someone said before me they are out of context and usually meaningless from any angle other than sensationalism. IF the training idea had been a serious consideration you would have mentioned it first and approached the chief with this as your focus. My feeling is YOU are looking for your 15 minutes of internet fame by posting a fire video.

    Sorry NO. The only way I would even consider it is if immediately after the incident you turned the video over to me for approval for release and my opinion would be final. Any violation of that and you would be suspended and if it ocurred again you would be terminated.

    My focus has always been the incident and my part in mitigating it. Not video or still photos while I am supposed to be working. There are careers that have a focus as filming, its called the media.

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    DFD makes a damn good point. If you really want to use it, work with your chief. Maybe he'll let you use it on training excercises to help evaluate the performance of crews or to demonstrate certain things.

    However, the chief may have some good reasons why he doesn't want you wearing it. I commonly go to youtube and even the helmet cam's website to show videos of things I don't want my guys doing, as does the training chief on my career department. How do you think he feels about someone using his FD, with their names on their jackets and trucks, as examples of what not to do. Imagine sitting in a class or seminar when the guy at the podium pulls up a video of his department doing something that he's not particularly proud of.

    Plus, the videos could fall under the open records laws and be available to any Tom, Dick, and Harry out there, plus some attorney's who are looking for their next lawsuit and big payoff. Video is very compelling evidence.

    There's probably more to it than the chief's being an hardass and won't let you wear your new toy on your helmet.

  20. #20
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    The Chief said no. Just follow his order and move on. We have enough helmet videos to watch on YouTube anyways and they arent that exciting.

    I got an idea- Why dont you impress me with you skills and knowledge vs. showing off the video camera.

    Listen up, follow orders and continue to follow simple directions as long as youre a Volunteer Firefighter.

    Bou
    Last edited by CALFFBOU; 01-25-2009 at 02:40 PM.

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    Do you also question your boss at your regular job?? Like it or not the chief is your boss on the fire department. Do as he says and don't bitch about it behind his back because sooner or later he'll hear about it... or quit the department and wear your cam out on a date if you "want to record some crazy crap".

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    Your Chief probably just finished reading this thread, or one like it.

    http://forums.firehouse.com/showthre...ve+a+firetruck

    Here's what happens when someone says "wow we should put some really cool stuff on youtube" and it becomes a representation of your department. I'm not saying you are or are not as irresponsible as these guys, but this is probably where your Chief's thinking is coming from.
    I may speak gibberish, but I don't talk s***! -- Dropkick Murphys

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    good luck hope it works

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    Quote Originally Posted by rfburns View Post
    Hey there!

    I got a helmet videocam for Xmas.

    I simply wanted to record some of the crazy crap
    we see and maybe post something on youtube.

    I am a volunteer,any suggestions on what to do?
    Crazy crap? Don the helmet cam, shove your head (further) up your @ss, and start filming. Please post a link to the youtube video.

    Now seriously, perhaps it is worth a discussion with your chief on how it may enhance training, but if he/she holds the line, obey orders, and put it away until you have a new chief.

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    Maybe I am just stating points already made, but here is my 2 cents......

    If i watch a video on Youtube of a fire i never watch helmet camera footage. If the fire is a night or once you go interior you cant see anything anyway. I have found that the best footage of a fire is filmed by a good hand-held camera from the outside.

    We have a guy on our department that does have a helmet cam. However he does not post them on the internet. We will use them either as a training aid or just to see how we did on a fire scene. Problem is, as I stated before, the quality is not that good and if the fire is a night all you really see is the lights flashing on the engines, the glow of the fire and thats about it.

    Plus, do the firefighters, or just whoever does the filming, get permission from the home owner or business owner to use footage of the fire for training purposes or to post on YouTube? How do you think some people would feel if they know that their house burning to the ground was posted all over the internet. Some people may not mind, but I am sure that some people would not like it.

    On the flip side, I am curious about this because I honestly do not know,,,,,,,,

    How is it that a television news reporting group or newspaper can take either video or photos of a crime scene, fire, or car accident and post it all over the TV or front page of a newspaper? Do they have the right due to the freedom of the press thing or do they have to get expressed consent to post that stuff? Just wondering.

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