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    Default No More Pole Slideing For Victoria FD

    HAHAAHAHAAA Made ya look!!!

    No more pole-sliding for Victoria firefighters

    Loss of firehall poles illustrates that we live in a society obsessed with safety

    By Jack Knox, Times ColonistJanuary 26, 2009Be the first to post a comment

    They've plugged the pole hole in the main Victoria firehall.

    Did it during renovations last fall, not that anyone noticed.

    Turns out it's been seven or eight years since a Victoria firefighter slid down the brass pole en route to a conflagration. They're not allowed. Might get injured.

    Who knew? Not me. I slid down a pole once, didn't hurt a thing, though the stripper went "oomph" when I landed on her.

    But no, no, it seems it's true: The same people who run into burning buildings for a living are barred from sliding from one floor to another.

    Not everywhere: Some fire departments employ poles and some don't. Oak Bay does. Ditto for Colwood and Sooke. Saanich actually has two (one up and one down?). But a patched-over piece of floor is all that reminds Esquimalt firefighters of the pole removed in 2002.

    Internationally, the trend has seen poles being plucked from firehalls in the name of protecting firefighters -- not that all the firefighters are happy. "It is health and safety gone mad," one recently told the Liverpool Echo newspaper in Britain, where hundreds of firehalls have been deforested. "Running down the stairs could be more dangerous than the pole."

    Regardless, many safety authorities view the firepole as an anachronism, a museum piece whose usefulness is long past, something like George W. Bush. (Just joking; Bush was never useful.) Sliding down poles doesn't really improve response time to fires, they say, and most guys prefer the stairs anyway. Poles can leave a nasty skin burn if you're in a short-sleeved shirt, and there have been serious falls, including one in the 1990s in which a Victoria firefighter hurt his back -- the incident that eventually led the department to block its pole hole (which in itself sounds quite painful).

    So, no, you can't blame the authorities for doing the prudent thing and telling firefighters to leave the brass to the peelers.

    Likewise, you can't blame the No Fun Police for putting an end to another traditional practice: riding on the running boards. It's been years since we last saw a firefighter desperately clinging to the back of a ladder truck as it careened around the corner, siren wailing, lights flashing, that here-comes-Armageddon air horn blaring away.

    The thing is, none of the workplace safety rules that the firefighters or you or I live with are objectionable in isolation. Individually, they all make sense. It's when they're piled atop one another that we start to feel smothered.

    We live in a society obsessed with safety: seatbelts, airbags, Baby on Board decals, childproof caps, hardhats, best-before dates, railings and elbow pads. Homemade foods are banned from farmers' markets. Signs posted in public washrooms admonish you to wash your hands. Students must sign a liability waiver before learning to crochet at school (I'm not making that up).

    Even our national sport (assault on ice) is affected. The current debate in hockey is whether players should be allowed to remove their helmets before they fight, the argument being that they might get hurt. Of course they might get hurt. That's the whole point of fighting. Next thing you know, the players will be forced to keep their gloves on and submit to dispute-resolution instead. ("What I hear you saying, Bobby, is that you feel disempowered.")

    Forget the Maple Leaf -- our symbol should be an orange safety vest, fluttering from the flagpole. The beaver should be replaced by a mother hen, the inscription on the coat of arms altered to whatever the Latin is for "careful, you'll put your eye out." The sign at the border should read "Welcome to Canada: 23 accident-free days."

    But like I said, none of the workplace rules is objectionable on its own. And firefighting is a risky job, best to make it as safe as they can. Riding on the back of fire engines is dangerous. So, I guess, is sliding down the firepole.

    Presumably firefighters will still be permitted to engage in some of their less perilous traditional practices -- training Dalmatians (muzzled, of course) or hitting on hotties, though the latter also carries the risk of getting burned.

    Copyright (c) The Victoria Times Colonist

    Note: I did not add ANY commentary to the above text.

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    Default Splat...

    Quote Originally Posted by MalahatTwo7 View Post
    HAHAAHAHAAA Made ya look!!!

    Who knew? Not me. I slid down a pole once, didn't hurt a thing, though the stripper went "oomph" when I landed on her.
    Thanks Bro, I may never get all the coffee out of my keyboard.

    I'm happy to say our one house (HQ) that has a pole is still in use. Some of us old timers don't use it anymore, but the pups love it.
    Last edited by Dave1983; 01-27-2009 at 11:20 AM.
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    I'd say Canada was smothered years ago. But don't worry, Lord Baraka intends to pass you in the race to true Marxism.

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    Over the radio this morning they were commenting that there is a movement afoot regarding use of tobogans and wearing of helmets, or the current lack there of, apparently.

    One of the DJ's was at a ski hill this past weekend and commented that she had seen several younger kids with what she termed "bowling balls" on their heads. The helmets they were wearing were so large that the kids were basically unstable when standing. The question came up, "When is being safe becoming TOO safe for our own good?"

    There were lots of comments of "Look at us. We didn't have helmets when we were kids, and .... "
    If you don't do it RIGHT today, when will you have time to do it over? (Hall of Fame basketball player/coach John Wooden)

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    It is a darn shame to live in such a litigious society. Lack of personal responsibility and greed has run rampid for too long. I am not one to see anyone hurt, but if they do that may teach that guy a lesson.


    We were told here that when the built our stations that NFPA "outlawed" brass poles... that was before my time here and noone bothered to refereence the standards. NFPA did not do such a thing in 1989.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MalahatTwo7 View Post
    Over the radio this morning they were commenting that there is a movement afoot regarding use of tobogans and wearing of helmets, or the current lack there of, apparently.

    There were lots of comments of "Look at us. We didn't have helmets when we were kids, and .... "
    Helmets....we don't need no stinkin' helmets.
    Last edited by firecat1; 05-01-2009 at 03:51 PM.

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    I still do not understand how in a sleeping slunder running with your boots unzipped down a flight of stairs with eye gook blocking your vision can be any safer than sliding down a pole with a big pile of pillows/pads under neith it.

    oh well...
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    Regardless, many safety authorities view the firepole as an anachronism, a museum piece whose usefulness is long past, something like George W. Bush. (Just joking; Bush was never useful.)
    Scumbag.

    Helluva way to talk about the country who protects your sorry liberal asses up there.
    PROUD, HONORED AND HUMBLED RECIPIENT OF THE PURPLE HYDRANT AWARD - 10/2007.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgeWendtCFI View Post
    Scumbag.

    Helluva way to talk about the country who protects your sorry liberal asses up there.
    Ya know, as a professional soldier from the "Up There" country, I should pass on a pearl of wisdom or three..... but then I figured: Whats the point? Why argue liberalism over conservatism or any other "ism"?

    Lots of noise and blowing air would ensue from all parties, and truthfully the only "Party" I really like is the one where good food, good booze and good friends abound. Because when you exchange one "ism" for anther "ism", it doesn't really matter what the Voice of the current "ism" said, it will do pretty much the same thing as the other "ism" did, only changes are the voice and the face that produced the voice.

    The only true party is the Party of Friends, who look out for each other and while they may be occasionally dysfunctional, they still work as a team when the time counts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MalahatTwo7 View Post
    Ya know, as a professional soldier from the "Up There" country, I should pass on a pearl of wisdom or three..... but then I figured: Whats the point? Why argue liberalism over conservatism or any other "ism"?

    Lots of noise and blowing air would ensue from all parties, and truthfully the only "Party" I really like is the one where good food, good booze and good friends abound. Because when you exchange one "ism" for anther "ism", it doesn't really matter what the Voice of the current "ism" said, it will do pretty much the same thing as the other "ism" did, only changes are the voice and the face that produced the voice.

    The only true party is the Party of Friends, who look out for each other and while they may be occasionally dysfunctional, they still work as a team when the time counts.
    And speaking of the President who not only orchestrated a homeland security policy that prevented another catastrophic terrorist attack on the US but also your country is an example of the "Party of Friends"? Please.

    This is not about political ideology. It is about ungrateful slobs.
    PROUD, HONORED AND HUMBLED RECIPIENT OF THE PURPLE HYDRANT AWARD - 10/2007.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgeWendtCFI View Post
    And speaking of the President who not only orchestrated a homeland security policy that prevented another catastrophic terrorist attack on the US but also your country is an example of the "Party of Friends"? Please.

    This is not about political ideology. It is about ungrateful slobs.

    Too bad none of that has anything to do with fire poles being used or installed in firehouses anymore.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MalahatTwo7 View Post
    Too bad none of that has anything to do with fire poles being used or installed in firehouses anymore.
    Then why did the author of this article feel compelled to put it in there? My guess is that is because that is the prevailing attitude up there.
    PROUD, HONORED AND HUMBLED RECIPIENT OF THE PURPLE HYDRANT AWARD - 10/2007.

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    George, you have to remember something about Jack Knox. He writes satire. Plain and simple. Granted sometimes he hits a nerve, or three or four; I know, I've taken offence to some of what he's written in the past too. But at the end of the day, its satire. Nothing much more and certainly nothing much less.
    If you don't do it RIGHT today, when will you have time to do it over? (Hall of Fame basketball player/coach John Wooden)

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    I have to question what person thought they don't improve response times?

    There are a few issues possibly at work in that circumstance.

    1. Poles are insufficent for the number of men needing to use them.
    2. Poles are poorly placed and not distributed appropraitely throughout the house.

    Poles came after years of men rambling down stairs and one man in Chicago thinking there must be a better way. Considering the contemporary fire service of the day was uber-obsessed with response times (ones that would make just about every fire company out there today look like slugs) it is hard to imagine that they would have spent so much money on an advancement such as that...if it didn't improve response times. (which it was documented in numerous cities). The standard amount of brass poles in a single company house in the late 19th Centrury here had 7 poles for 3 1/2 to 4 floors(either top floor or roof/top of hose tower had pole leading to lower floor) Usually 3 between 1 and 2 and 3 poles between floors 2 and 3.

    In fact in my expereince with single story and multi story houses...I've found that one could get from a sitting room on the 3rd floor of a 19th Century to their respective riding position at the apparatus much much quicker than one comming from the TV room in single story firehouses built in the 1980s that I've worked in in the past. And that is using a brisk walk.(remember can't run as it is unsafe...can't eliminate pole and then ask the men run on possibly we floors or down stairs.)

    Last time I checked it was well accepted that the only way to really reduce response times is either in dispatching processing times or in the turnout.

    I'd say it is once again more of those who only see what they want to see and understand what they want to understand. So many have this idea that poles don't work or are dangerous or are outlawed (only one state I know of outlaws them)

    If more people put some thought into the design and function of the firehouse...more would look to replicate many features found in 19th Century houses when the turnouts look less than 10 seconds.

    Sad day for the liberals in Canada.

    FTM-PTB

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    .(remember can't run as it is unsafe...can't eliminate pole and then ask the men run on possibly we floors or down stairs.)
    So the bannister is totally out of the question?
    PROUD, HONORED AND HUMBLED RECIPIENT OF THE PURPLE HYDRANT AWARD - 10/2007.

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    Only 4 of our 30 firehouses DO NOT have poles. I havent worked w/anyone that doesnt use them. My firehouse has 5 of them....1 in the chiefs room, 1 in the captains quarters, 2 in the bunkhall, and 1 that has access from the locker room and the main tv room.

    Depending who your captain is here, you could get left behind if you try taking the stairs.

    I've mentioned this before...just like your SCBA, Hurst Tool, ax...whatever......this is a "tool of the trade"

    Use it properly and it gets the job done safely and efficiently, but if you are not trained, dont pay attention to what you are doing...this chance of getting injured are greater...

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    On my old department,when we got the new station specced out,two officers had been on paid departments and missed being able to slide down poles when responding.
    So,the new station has a pole but since the bunks for those sleeping over at the station are all downstairs,when the tones drop these guys have to run up stairs to the hvac room and THEN slide down the pole before running to the rig.
    Also,in reference to the stripper on the pole,maybe the old poles can be recycled by trimming them to length and selling them to local "gentlemen's clubs".
    Won't you help the poor ladies trying to buy clothes?(sniff,sniff)

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    And just what would you be "sniff sniff"ing about Doug?

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    Quote Originally Posted by MalahatTwo7 View Post
    And just what would you be "sniff sniff"ing about Doug?
    Sad tears.Think of those poor girls running around in the winter with little or nothing to wear at work.Won't you help?
    "...And technically,I clothed the naked at Ken's Strip Club in Tennessee.Jesus,squeeze me into Heaven on a technicality..."

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    Jesus,squeeze me into Heaven on a technicality..."
    HAHAHAAAAAAA. They were playing Madona's "Papa Don't Preach" on the radio while I was reading your last post, Doug.

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    Quote Originally Posted by doughesson View Post
    Sad tears.Think of those poor girls running around in the winter with little or nothing to wear at work.Won't you help?
    Um, Doug, are ya tryin' to get the man in trouble with me at home?

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