Thread: Worst Fire Chief in America
08-21-2009, 01:42 AM #1
- Join Date
- Jun 2009
Worst Fire Chief in America
And the winner is..... Rhoda May Kerr Austin, Tx
Since her time in Austin her have been just a couple of her accomplishments.
Attempted Reduced Staffing
Promotions/Appointment solely based on race. Because... "It's important, first of all that our executive team does have some diversity"
And her Latest... The Driving Miss Daisy Approach
And these are just the "News Worthy" stories. Besides these She has also...
-Banned turnouts inside the station and on any calls except Fire/Crash related.
-Lied about events at a recent Pride Parade to cover up the issue. Luckily Photo evidence came out with members of the Command Staff and THE POLICE CHIEF showing different.
-Threw a Lt. and a FireFighter under the bus for a collision while responding code 3. But an Assistant Chief got into an accident while driving and got a slap on the wrist because he was "momentarily distracted while checking his blackberry"
08-21-2009, 09:26 AM #2
- Join Date
- Apr 2004
- Bossier Parrish, Louisiana
So driving the speed limit and stopping at intersections, which if followed will reduce apparatus accidents and injuries to firefighters and civilians is a bad thing?
Why does our fire service culture say this kind of thinking is just fine.
Last edited by LaFireEducator; 08-21-2009 at 10:19 AM.
08-21-2009, 09:47 AM #3
- Join Date
- Dec 2007
I have to agree with LAFireeducator on this one...
Stopping at stop signs, red lights, etc. prevents accidents and damage to both civilian and fire department apparatus. Although the argument was made for an increase in response times, I have to wonder how long it takes for the second due engine to arrive at the same scene after the first due rig has been involved in an accident after failing to stop for a civilian vehicle which crosses their path at an intersection. It seems to me that a slight increase (possibly 30 seconds at the most) is reasonable in order to avoid paying a higher cost. REMEMBER...we can't help anyone if we don't arrive on scene in one piece.
As for the issue with having turnout gear in the living area and on non-fire related calls I have to say thats an intelligent move. Don't misunderstand me though...any call in which the IC determines that PPE should be worn then by all means it should be worn. This is why your fire deaprtment paid so much money to equip you with it.
HOWEVER...our job is dangerous enough as it is. Why expose ourselves (in the living quarters) and our patients (on EMS calls) to the carcinogens that are imbedded in our gear? Unless you are washing your turnouts after every run, then I have to assume that some level of dirt/grime/soot is present on your gear. Bottom line is that we should be doing whatever it takes to protect ourselves and our patients from additional exposure.
Reference "Come Clean: Dirty Gear Is No Badge of Honor" in the August 2004 issue of Firehouse magazine if you want to read a good article in support of cleaning your gear.
Be safe out there...I think Chief Kerr is doing a fine job looking out for her people. I can think of many others who are doing far worse than she is.
08-21-2009, 10:22 AM #4
I'm sure there are many issues which have led you to believe the Chief is doing a poor job. I agree with you on the staffing, but not on the driving or turnout gear issues.
As far as the minority hiring, here are some questions for you to consider:
-Is the objection based on passing over otherwise well qualified members who happen to be white, or to the promotion of two inexperienced people?
-How would you feel if the city were to open up the positions to the outside and select two minority officers with qualifications equivalent to the best department members?
-Would you oppose that course of action because they are "outsiders", or because it is unfair to the members who have served their whole career in your dept?
-Is the purpose of the dept to provide an efficient service to the public, or to provide promotional opportunities?
-What part of "efficient service to the public" includes setting a positive example to minority residents?
08-21-2009, 10:23 AM #5I 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."
08-21-2009, 10:30 AM #6
Unless you've worked for every fire chief in the fire service, that's a pretty broad statement. Like FFD122 said, there could be far worse out there.
As far as the driving policy. What's the complaint? Is the union just complaining to complain? I would think the union would support this type of policy. Even the IAFF supports emergency vehicle safety http://www.iaff.org/hs/EVSP/index.html
Also, regarding the driving rule. Policy is just that - written documentation that explains the behavior that is expected of everyone, and holds them accountable for their actions or inactions.
08-21-2009, 11:02 AM #7
- Join Date
- Mar 2004
Bring the apparatus to a complete stop at all red
lights and stop signs. Though not cited in the police
reports, clearly this incident could have been avoided
altogether had the driver/operator brought the apparatus
to a complete stop and account for all lanes of traffic
before proceeding through the intersection. NFPA 1500
requires all apparatus to be brought to a complete stop
in these situations.
This is from page 6 of the instructors Guide off of the IAFF's website. The Link is in the post above. My question is how can the union not agree with the cheif on this one if it is in there own classes?
08-21-2009, 12:18 PM #8
08-21-2009, 12:23 PM #9
- Join Date
- Jun 2009
Gunnyv & FFD122
Possibly 30 seconds at most... ok listen to this and you tell me if this was your wife and children stuck in the bathroom would you really want them to wait 30 seconds more.
The diversity issue
-there were many more qualified applicants (race shouldn't matter)
-no to outsourcing
-want to set a positive example to minority residents...show hard work pays off, not being brown has it privileges. one of the assistant chiefs key points on his resume was that he is an assistant t-ball coach for gods sake.
Having your turnouts in a 2000 square foot Fire Station you flip out. But then you will ride in a closed cab Fire Truck with 4-5 sets of turnouts no problem. Or do you have them packed up in a hazmat bag/or stuffed in a compartment with your airpack while driving. You probably agree with taking the airpacks out of the cabs because you don't want Firefighters getting ready on the way to Fire. I mean God forbid you remove you seatbelt to get ready to go into a BURNING BUILDING.
Why do Firefighters have so much respect? Because a long time ago there were Men who risked it all and ran into burning buildings (with little to no safety gear) to save a complete stranger. Stupid as it was there was honor in that and we are considered hero's because of them. But now the new culture is you don't even want to risk a fender bender or a sinus infection. This pussy foot approach to firefighting has to go. And all you "trolls" as Chief KN need to put down your NFPA (not for practical application) manuals, gain a set a balls, and start practicing aggressive Fire Suppression/Rescue instead of preaching Fire Safety.
Thanks captain old timer you have a great day as well.
08-21-2009, 12:33 PM #10
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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- Mar 2002
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08-21-2009, 12:40 PM #11
- Join Date
- Jul 1999
- Rural Wisconsin, Retired from the burbs of Milwaukee
While I disagree with slamming one's own fire department here on this national forum I defend his right to do it. I actually find it less offensive than being called a murderer by another member of this forum.
08-21-2009, 12:53 PM #12
Airing out you departments laundry isn't the best thing to do, but if you must, he should join www.thewatchdesk.com and let it fly!Stay Safe and Well Out There....
Always remembering 9-11-2001 and 343+ Brothers
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