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  1. #26
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    I don't care what the next call in que is. An energized line sitting in the middle of the road is an immediate life threatening hazard. Abandoning it because there is more fun call to go on would constitute willful and wanton negligence on our part. This is why we have more than one fire truck, small service trucks, and that other thing called mutual aid to back us up. Multiple calls happen and sometimes you are going to get stuck on one that isn't as fun and glorious as the other but is equally as important.

    The minimum apparatus necessary will be remaining there until the power company arrives to make it safe or the police find additional manpower to takeover.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

  2. #27
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    Ice storm here would be a regional event and mutual aid would simply not be available.

    In all liklihood, we would dispatch the engine. Then, if they reported an energized line, we would send out a support member ("oh god no!) to watch it with a utility vehicle and free up the engine.If the call load got to the point where we needed those members, we would pull them off a downed line and likely cone it off and advise the sheriff's department that we are leaving. They would likely send a cruiser to replace us.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by nmfire View Post
    I don't care what the next call in que is. An energized line sitting in the middle of the road is an immediate life threatening hazard. Abandoning it because there is more fun call to go on would constitute willful and wanton negligence on our part. This is why we have more than one fire truck, small service trucks, and that other thing called mutual aid to back us up. Multiple calls happen and sometimes you are going to get stuck on one that isn't as fun and glorious as the other but is equally as important.

    The minimum apparatus necessary will be remaining there until the power company arrives to make it safe or the police find additional manpower to takeover.
    A downed line is a potential hazard, I do not agree that it is "an immediate life theatening hazard". Suppose the downed line was never reported to the fire department and the utility company responded to and repaired the line on their own? Is someone going to die? No. What about all the wires in the storm that don't get called in? Are you going to stop at every downed wire you see and wait over, and over, and over for the power company?

    It is purely a preventive measure that is fine when things are slow, but it is ludacris to be so nieve to believe that you should delay the response to a building fire to wait on mutual aid companies because sitting at a downed line that may or may not even still be live is more important.

    Sure sometimes you are gonna miss things because you are stuck on other calls, but making yourself be stuck - especially under the premise of the original post, when the systems are overwhelmed, is retarded.

    Handle the incidents where you can make the most impact. Sitting at the downed line ain't it.
    Last edited by MemphisE34a; 06-26-2009 at 05:06 PM.
    RK
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    Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by MemphisE34a View Post
    A downed line is a potential hazard, not agree that it is "an immediate life theatening hazard. Suppose the downed line was never reported to the fire department and the utility company responded to and repaired the line on their own? Is someone going to die? No. What about all the wires in the storm that don't get called in? Are you going to stop at every downed wire you see and wait over, and over, and over for the power company?

    It is purely a preventive measure that is fine when things are slow, but it is ludacris to be so nieve to believe that you should delay the response to a building fire to wait on mutual aid companies because sitting at a downed line that may or may not even still be live is more important.

    Sure sometimes you are gonna miss things because you are stuck on other calls, but making yourself be stuck - especially under the premise of the original post, when the systems are overwhelmed, is retarded.

    Handle the incidents where you can make the most impact. Sitting at the downed line ain't it.
    What he said. Seriously great point about the "potential" and "immediate" threat.
    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.

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  5. #30
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    Ok, so at what point does an energized power line down on a public road go from potentially to immediately hazardous? Is it like 10 seconds prior to a pedestrian getting killed? Or is there a number of people who are allowed to die before it becomes a problem? Perhaps the presence of dead bodies will warn away other pedestrians?

    If there was a grenade lying on the side of the road, do you think the police would say "well its not really a hazard unless someone pulls the pin so we'll come get it later."
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by nmfire View Post
    Ok, so at what point does an energized power line down on a public road go from potentially to immediately hazardous? Is it like 10 seconds prior to a pedestrian getting killed? Or is there a number of people who are allowed to die before it becomes a problem? Perhaps the presence of dead bodies will warn away other pedestrians?

    If there was a grenade lying on the side of the road, do you think the police would say "well its not really a hazard unless someone pulls the pin so we'll come get it later."
    So you have a storm and you have 20 wires down calls. Do you really call in m/a for that?

    Do they come?

    To answer your question. I don't know. However, I do see it as a risk management issue and the risk is much greater for a person trapped in a building fire as opposed to a person deciding to touch an arcing power line.
    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."

  7. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by nmfire View Post
    Ok, so at what point does an energized power line down on a public road go from potentially to immediately hazardous? Is it like 10 seconds prior to a pedestrian getting killed? Or is there a number of people who are allowed to die before it becomes a problem? Perhaps the presence of dead bodies will warn away other pedestrians?
    I think you are missing the premise of the original post. The situation in discussion does not pertain to a single incident or even a single wire down. The rest of of are discussing a situation, like a severe storm, where there are dozens or more lines down in your own terrirtory in addition to other more serious calls. How can you rest so assuredly at one wire knowing that there are 10 more just like it within 2 blocks? What if someone were to try and dance with one of them?

    We have 57 engines and 28 trucks in service everyday. We had a storm come through on the 12th of this month that blew down multiple trees, poles, and wires. It also did vast structural damage and caused about 12 working fires over the span of a couple of hours which we made 3 of. Do you think it would have been responsible for us to not have any equipment available to send to reports of buildings on fire because we had 85 companies all sitting on the scene of downed power lines?

    We made wires down calls where the wires remained down for several days to the shear amount of damage that was done city wide. The power company was not available, the police were not available, and by your logic the fire department would not have been available until the power company fixed all the wires. We would have had companies sitting for days at a time and then would have to move on to another one until that was one was repaired.

    I am glad that I have never had to work for anyone with this same logic or live in an area where I would have to hope that all the cities electricty was in service before I could rely on the fire department for help should my house catch fire because they think that is more important.

    You are however entitled to your opinion, but your wrong on this one bro.
    Last edited by MemphisE34a; 06-27-2009 at 05:26 PM.
    RK
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    Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

  8. #33
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    When it is a wire down, we sit till power company arrives or until relieved by another company when it's an ISOLATED incident. When it is the result of a STORM SYSTEM we respond, best secure the area and move onto the next one. It can be days sometimes before the power company arrives. I don't know about you NMfire (although I can make a educated guess) we're going to have more serious calls (translation: working fires) during the course of those few days. Therefore we don't sit when we can make a good faith effort at securing or cautioning an area.

    Besides, even when we do sit on a wire, that doesn't stop the idiots from ignoring us. Case in point: This Spring an engine went to downed wires, blocked the street diagonally with the truck, used cones and caution tape on the other side, and were physically standing by. An individual decided that didn't apply to her, was verbally warned, ignored it, drove around the truck up onto the sidewalk to proceed around. In doing so, she drove over the LT's foot as he attempted to get out of the way and so he spent a month on IOD.

    My point? If they're going to ignore you regardless if you're sitting there or not, you might as well be in service for another response.

    Cordon the area and move on.

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by nmfire View Post
    It isn't their problem until they get there to take over. So you're in favor of leaving an energized power line down unprotected because you're too lazy or special to babysit it until the power company or someone else arrives.
    In such a storm situation call a cop/highway patrol to take care of TRAFFIC CONTROL while you take care of real emergencies. Falls under "If you want something done you call the FD, not a cop". AND they are on the clock.

    Anyone have/use or have an SOP on use of hotstick. Or pike pole. Move lines off of the pavement. We have fiberglass pikepoles unlike the police.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by neiowa View Post
    In such a storm situation call a cop/highway patrol to take care of TRAFFIC CONTROL while you take care of real emergencies. Falls under "If you want something done you call the FD, not a cop". AND they are on the clock.

    Anyone have/use or have an SOP on use of hotstick. Or pike pole. Move lines off of the pavement. We have fiberglass pikepoles unlike the police.
    Cops... Yea we have two covering the entire town. Easier said than done.

    No hotsticks or playing with power for us.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

  11. #36
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    If it's a power line down we will stay with it. If we have major storm damage in the area, we will call for mutual aid.

  12. #37
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    Ice and wind storms warrant coverage for blocked roads or downed lines. We generally assign two apparatus until the power company arrives. Sometimes we even provide lighting for the crews until the problem is secured. For multiple problems (over 6 or 8) the road crew is assigned to cover the least dangerous locations. Barricades are used where possible with downed trees, etc. Live lines warrant FD coverage by apparatus or fire police. Where dead ends are blocked with trees, we will remove enough to allow apparatus to pass the blockages.
    For Rescue101 and others from the far North… I had the pleasure of pulling a load of pine shavings out of Dixfield the night of the ice storm around 99 or 2000. Power lines sagging across roads, trees snapping.. not a pleasant Sunday Afternoon drive. Got to go back a couple of weeks later. Nothing but poles with no limbs standing for miles and miles. We get some ice here in Western Pa. but not anything like that mess.

  13. #38
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    That would have been ICE STORM 98.We're still dealing with some of the aftermath. I lived at the Central station for about a week until we got our power back.We've made numerous inprovements to facilities and are much better prepared for long term events now. T.C.

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