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  1. #1
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    Unhappy FD vs EMS Rescue personalities

    We seem to be developing a real problem. Our EMS division which is all female but one, seems to be having issues with the fire division. Actually a new female member of three years and newly elected captain, seems to be punishing the fire division because of one member she has taken an extreme dislike to. At one meeting, she made actual claims which this long time member finally had had enough and stood up and said that he had had enough, that she was bearing false witness and when he questioned her, said he discovered she is actually lying. She was behind a two year incident involving a hydrant and sprinkler issue that when installed was set up wrong and never inspected afterwards, which she tried to get the FD to pay the $700 bill. The FD was found innocent of any wrong doing and exonerated. This EMS captain was a board member where this sprinkler system was installed at. It looked like a conflict of interest and in my opinion she should have removed herself from the process. Now this FD member is claiming aggrieved status and came over to my house to show his follow up evidence that directly contradicts this emt's claims. In fact they are from outside government agencies that glowingly support this fireman. Now the day after the city council's meeting the mayor has asked to come over to my house to get copies of the Departments constitution.
    The president of the fire board and only member of the EMS squad now seems to be defending the fire captain. It has been suggested that with our small department that because of this, any removal of this female ems captain might force the department to close its ems division and that could possibly be the reason why the president of the board is leaning towards this ems captain and in many of the fire divisions opinion, is a trouble maker.

    Now the president of our mutual aid association confirmed a couple times that his own department had two members who refused to go on calls if they knew this ems captain was responding.

    My question is this, does the president of the board have reason to support this ems captain who is obviously been a problem and is trying to create a problem? If she is making false claims and bearing false witness and lying, as this two decades member claims, deserve to be removed or demoted to save the ems division?

    I know this seems like airing dirty laundry, but would prefer to get opinions here versus letting it get too far out in the open.
    Last edited by jam24u; 05-11-2011 at 09:18 AM.


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    Quote Originally Posted by jam24u View Post
    My question is this, does the president of the board have reason to support this ems captain who is obviously been a problem and is trying to create a problem? If she is making false claims and bearing false witness and lying, as this two decades member claims, deserve to be removed or demoted to save the ems division?
    You're assuming political maneuvering has a logical basis behind it? This appears to be pure politics - there are reasons behind it, but I doubt they're logical.

    Good luck - sounds like a wonderful fiasco to be embroiled in....

  3. #3
    MembersZone Subscriber tree68's Avatar
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    Document, document, document. Pull in copies of records in case they "conveniently" disappear.

    The EMS captain sounds like a bully, plain and simple. About the only way to take down a bully is to call them out.

    It's interesting that it's felt that removing this captain would close down the EMS division. Does she hold that much power? Would everyone else in EMS leave if she was canned? If that's the case, this pecadillo is the least of your problems.

    This does sound vaguely familiar, though. A similar issue was discussed a year or so ago.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jam24u View Post
    I know this seems like airing dirty laundry, but would prefer to get opinions here versus letting it get too far out in the open.
    You don't want it out in the open, so you posted the whole issue on the internet.

    Oooooook,,,,,,,,,,,

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    Not sure what position you are in on all this, either as a fellow ff or a command officer, but here's my take:

    Does the pres have a reason to support the captain? Well, that's up to them. If you really want to know, ask them. If the ff in question has all his ducks in a row and has all sorts of "evidence", then get him and the pres together and let them sort it out. The whole claim that the EMS division will fold if she's removed, well, I call bull droppings. I have served with more individuals I care to count that have made those claims and quite honestly, the orginization is still standing that they made those similar claims to. If all the members are willing to leave because of another member, then maybe they all need reminding that EMS is about saving lives and helping your fellow man/woman/child, that if they're wanting a social club, they can go down the street and start one up.

    Maybe, more realistically, the pres is scared the female captain is going to pull the gender card if he (or she?) demotes/removes them from their position.

    If there's any ounce of material that supports her falsifying information, then she should by all rights be dealt with according to any disciplinary policies that your agency may have regarding false testimony and undermining of fellow employees. No policy in place, then best of luck.

    Does she deserve to be demoted? I'd say that's a judgment call that shouldn't be rushed.

    How can a EMS division, that is entirely seperate from the Fire division (as I read your post), punish any member from another division and vice-versa?

    If it were me, I'd remove myself from the situation and let the pres, mayor, captain and accused member work out their problems.

  6. #6
    Forum Member islandfire03's Avatar
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    Talking

    Who does the EMS captain have dirt on besides the fire member?
    Is she involved with someone on the board?

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    Forum Member FWDbuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jam24u View Post
    She was behind a two year incident involving a hydrant and sprinkler issue that when installed was set up wrong and never inspected afterwards, which she tried to get the FD to pay the $700 bill. [B]What the h*ll does the FD have to do with the design and installation of a sprinkler system? This falls under Code Enforcement and/or the Fire Marshal's Office. Where are they in all this?[B]


    I know this seems like airing dirty laundry
    Thats because it is.

    All of this sounds vaguely familiar......Did you post something about this a year or two back? Perhaps in the Fire Inspector/Fire Marshal sub-forums, or somewhere else?
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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    Yep,

    I posted something over a year back that dealt with the sprinker system. Only at that time we did not realize this ems captain was also on that concert halls board too. Our only conclusion is that she intentionally was upset that the FD had one of its FF1 members there to gather the facts form the technition inspecting the system, which blocked her chance to claim the FD owed the bill.

    Now she is a captain of five months and seems to be trying to punish the fire division for her failure to damage the fire division. Our concern is the outright lying and bearing false witness that seems to be her choice to retaliate.

    She seems on a course to divide and not unify.

    The USFA Resource Center is yielding some positive results with this situation AND the reason why we bring this dirty laundry out in the open here is because this is the brotherhood location to do so. Doing so out in the local public is the last place to bring it.

    I can feel this situation getting closer and closer to me to be in the middle which is why I am documenting as much as I can. I am the member who attends leadership and department management training and have been working to get the younger membership into positions of leadership for the future of the department. I know I will be out soon. The other FF involved is a member whose term of membership is only a couple years shorter than mine and those members with years of honorable service derserve to not be the victims of manufactured facts meant to discredit for an individuals personal issue.

    Thanks for the help.

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    Quote Originally Posted by islandfire03 View Post
    Who does the EMS captain have dirt on besides the fire member?
    Is she involved with someone on the board?
    Ed,

    No there is nothing like that. here is why the EMS division is in such a fragile position. Most of the EMS personnel are living a few miles out of town. The EMS captain is the only in town EMT. Around six years ago they approached a neighboring towns Fire and Rescue departments ems divison's to automatically respond to all our jurisdictions emergency medical pages. This does not involve the fire division as we have enough membership for our fire emergencies.

    Some of us have felt that the EMS division has failed to reslove the lack of membership issue. We know finding prospective EMT's is difficult, but it is also unfair to expect the neighboring town to shoulder an automatic response load for six years without compensation. It is because of this that if the EMS captain, who lives in town is demoted, she might resign. That done the Board President would technically have no emt's within the city limits. I could prompt the closure of the EMS division. The board president would then have an untenable position in his mind and likely lose his 13 year presidency.

    Yeah, that is an ego problem.

    Ed, as you know I have been working hard to build my departments fire division and we have gained such credibility. The EMS division has opportunities, but its leadership is really struggling unfortunately. Even with our offers to help, they always seem to fail to take advantage. I can only ask so many times.

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    This EMS "Division", is it part of the Fire Department? Aren't you the Chief?

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    Forum Member FWDbuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jam24u View Post
    Yep,

    I posted something over a year back that dealt with the sprinker system. Only at that time we did not realize this ems captain was also on that concert halls board too. Our only conclusion is that she intentionally was upset that the FD had one of its FF1 members there to gather the facts form the technition inspecting the system, which blocked her chance to claim the FD owed the bill. .
    Again, you have not answered my questions, upon which if I get the right information I can assist you in telling her to legally "go pound sand."

    The question is: What in the hell does your Fire Department have to do with the design, design approval, installation, installation approval, inspections, and maintenance upkeep of a sprinkler system? This all falls under Code Enforcement and/or the Fire Marshal's Office.

    Additionally, why in the hell is someone with FFI qualifications (and a member of the FD that should not be interfering in the first place) questioning someone performing maintenance to the system?

    Under the International Fire Code, as well as NFPA 13 and 25, there are certain requirements for annual inspection and maintenance to existing sprinkler systems. The AHJ (again, Code Enforcement or FM's Office) has the authority under these codes to deem any and all needed maintenance or repairs to be done in a timely fashion and at the property owner's expense. If I understand you correctly, you are alleging that someone from your FD (again, why?) who only has FFI, was questioning a sprinkler maintenance technician about repairs he was doing?

    Again, the codes require the maintenance be done. Some of it yearly, some of it less often.

    Call the bitch out on the carpet in your next open meeting. Slam down the 2009 IFC (about 400 pages) and NFPA's 13 and 25 (about another 400 combined pages) on the table in front of her, and tell her to find, in the books, where the Fire Department is responsible for the $700 bucks or whatever it is. When she stutters or hums and haws, say "I'll save you the trouble. The PROPERTY OWNER is responsible for any and all payments necessary for any and all maintenance deemed required by these documents AND THE AHJ! NOW STFU!"

    Then, you and your Code Enforcement people, your Fire Marshal's Office and your line officers all need to have a sit-down and discuss amongst yourself just exactly who is responsible for what, when, where and why.

    And tell your junior G-Man with the FFI badge to go study for FFII instead of putting his nose where it doesn't belong.
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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    Ya know, it sounds like it's time to get together with your other area EMS providers and create a regional service, completely separate from your fire department.

    It's happened a couple of times in our county already and things have never been better in those areas.
    Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tree68 View Post
    Ya know, it sounds like it's time to get together with your other area EMS providers and create a regional service, completely separate from your fire department.

    It's happened a couple of times in our county already and things have never been better in those areas.

    I was about to say the opposite. Sort of. Eliminate the EMS Division, have the Fire Department do everything, and do it as the Fire Department. One agency handles everything. We've been doing that here since day 1.......

    There are a lot of reasons NOT to have separate organizations providing Public Safety functions in a Community, the biggest of which is money. Running a close second, at least with Volunteers, is People. Communities with Both a Fire Company and an EMS Company that have merged into one organization to provide both services have saved quite a few Dollars.
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    The biggest impetus to breaking EMS out of fire departments here in NYS is billing. A volunteer FD cannot bill for ambulance service, an independent service can. Supposedly there is work ongoing to change the law, but it's not there yet.

    We've also found that there are folks who wouldn't join the fire department on a bet, for a variety of reasons, but who will gladly run with EMS. And we have those who do both. Many live outside their squad's first due, but come in and work shifts in-house (something we rarely see in our fire departments).

    An independent EMS squad also doesn't have to deal with the FD restriction from being in two (or more) different agencies - we have EMS folks who volunteer in several places, working shifts in each as their time allows.

    In the past few years we've had one vollie squad fold, with their territory taken over by a larger one that covers some five townships, two FD ambulances closed with service now provided by one independent service, one FD ambulance break from the FD and go independent, and just this past year, three VFD ambulances merged into one independent service covering three townships.

    VFD ambulances here are not all that healthy, for the same reasons the volunteer fire service is seeing as a whole - it's very likely we'll see more of this kind of thing.
    Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FWDbuff View Post
    Again, you have not answered my questions, upon which if I get the right information I can assist you in telling her to legally "go pound sand."

    The question is: What in the hell does your Fire Department have to do with the design, design approval, installation, installation approval, inspections, and maintenance upkeep of a sprinkler system? This all falls under Code Enforcement and/or the Fire Marshal's Office.

    Additionally, why in the hell is someone with FFI qualifications (and a member of the FD that should not be interfering in the first place) questioning someone performing maintenance to the system?

    Under the International Fire Code, as well as NFPA 13 and 25, there are certain requirements for annual inspection and maintenance to existing sprinkler systems. The AHJ (again, Code Enforcement or FM's Office) has the authority under these codes to deem any and all needed maintenance or repairs to be done in a timely fashion and at the property owner's expense. If I understand you correctly, you are alleging that someone from your FD (again, why?) who only has FFI, was questioning a sprinkler maintenance technician about repairs he was doing?

    Again, the codes require the maintenance be done. Some of it yearly, some of it less often.

    Call the bitch out on the carpet in your next open meeting. Slam down the 2009 IFC (about 400 pages) and NFPA's 13 and 25 (about another 400 combined pages) on the table in front of her, and tell her to find, in the books, where the Fire Department is responsible for the $700 bucks or whatever it is. When she stutters or hums and haws, say "I'll save you the trouble. The PROPERTY OWNER is responsible for any and all payments necessary for any and all maintenance deemed required by these documents AND THE AHJ! NOW STFU!"

    Then, you and your Code Enforcement people, your Fire Marshal's Office and your line officers all need to have a sit-down and discuss amongst yourself just exactly who is responsible for what, when, where and why.

    And tell your junior G-Man with the FFI badge to go study for FFII instead of putting his nose where it doesn't belong.
    That's just it. The FD has nothing to do with it. What the EMS Captain and member of the Theater board was saying is that the FD was responsible for time when using the hydrant during a training session, it flooded the sprinkler system. In other words, the theater got a $700 bill for having their system set up wrong and she wanted to cast blame on the FD.

    The FD had nothing to do with anything beyond what I just said. That makes this even more ridiculous and we proved it. It only counts now as she was caught trying to blame the department and she acts like she wants payback for it.

    There is and never been any code enforcement or sticking their nose in anything by the fire division, just documenting what the sprinkler technician revealed. As I said it looks like this problem member was trying to get someone else to be blamed for the bill. I can only surmise they just assumed some wrong doing on behalf of the department and the city and when they realized they were caught trying to pass off a failure on the theaters part, their reputation got hurt a little bit.

    She wants payback for being exposed.

    As it turns out, I have collected a lot of documentation for our special meeting which will restore this fire members reputation and basically paint this EMS member for what she is. A trouble maker with only three years as a member and two years as an EMT. I think the logical step will be to remove here from office and keep her from responding to our neighboring departments ems calls if they have members who do not want to respond if they know she is coming.

    I must say I am unfairly beginning to enjoy watching this go down, for the sake of establishing a protocol of proper department conduct when it comes to a member making false statements about another member. Protection of all versus a silly soap opera by what appears now to be an unstable EMT. (I noticed when driving by that she has strips of colored cloth hanging from her tree limbs in her yard and when I asked someone about this they said it is a wiccan or white witch trademark. Weird is right.)

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    If the division is part of the Fire Department, and you are the Chief, relieve her of her duties. Fire her. Get her gone.

    Life is way too short to put up with it.

    Your board has a choice at that point - back you or not. If they are not going to back you, then why bother working for them.

    Really. If they don't seem to be backing you, then suggest they find a new Chief. Want to bet you end up with the backing?

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    jam24u,

    I would advise you to tread VERY lightly on making disparaging remarks about the Wiccan beliefs. It is a belief system that follows the Pagan religious beliefs. As such it is judged a religion and granted the same legal protections as any other religion. I would hate for your EMS problem to become a legal harassment issue based on your remarks about her religious beliefs.

    Frankly, to be honest with you I am completely astounded that you are discussing this problem here at all. Especially with the track record of behavior issues you state she has. This public forum could bite you hard in the ***. Especially with comments like the ones you have made here about Wiccan beliefs and how you are unfairly enjoying watching this go down.


    I would delete it all, and if you do, I will delete this too.
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    This place gets weirder and weirder every day...

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    1. How is this a "fire personality vs EMS personality?" Every line of work has their nut jobs, and there are more nuts in the fire service than a payday bar. Would it be fair to characterize the entire fire service by their nut jobs like you are doing characterizing EMS by theirs?


    Quote Originally Posted by jam24u View Post
    (I noticed when driving by that she has strips of colored cloth hanging from her tree limbs in her yard and when I asked someone about this they said it is a wiccan or white witch trademark. Weird is right.)
    2. Any weirder than all of the people who have statues of some dude nailed onto some wooden planks hanging on their wall and who meet once a week to, either symbolically or "actually" (transubstantiation and all that jazz) eat the flesh and drink the blood of said Jew who died almost around 1980 years ago at the bidding of a bunch of other Jews? When you want to start nitpicking details on religions, there isn't a single one that can't be described as weird.

    Notes: As a Catholic, transubstantiation isn't even at the top of my list with some of my religion's cognitive dissonance. Also, Jesus was a jew...

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    The more I read of this, the more I want her side of the story now. I doubt either side is virginal white in this particula disagreement..

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    Quote Originally Posted by FWDbuff View Post
    Again, you have not answered my questions, upon which if I get the right information I can assist you in telling her to legally "go pound sand."

    The question is: What in the hell does your Fire Department have to do with the design, design approval, installation, installation approval, inspections, and maintenance upkeep of a sprinkler system? This all falls under Code Enforcement and/or the Fire Marshal's Office.

    Additionally, why in the hell is someone with FFI qualifications (and a member of the FD that should not be interfering in the first place) questioning someone performing maintenance to the system?

    Under the International Fire Code, as well as NFPA 13 and 25, there are certain requirements for annual inspection and maintenance to existing sprinkler systems. The AHJ (again, Code Enforcement or FM's Office) has the authority under these codes to deem any and all needed maintenance or repairs to be done in a timely fashion and at the property owner's expense. If I understand you correctly, you are alleging that someone from your FD (again, why?) who only has FFI, was questioning a sprinkler maintenance technician about repairs he was doing?

    Again, the codes require the maintenance be done. Some of it yearly, some of it less often.

    Call the bitch out on the carpet in your next open meeting. Slam down the 2009 IFC (about 400 pages) and NFPA's 13 and 25 (about another 400 combined pages) on the table in front of her, and tell her to find, in the books, where the Fire Department is responsible for the $700 bucks or whatever it is. When she stutters or hums and haws, say "I'll save you the trouble. The PROPERTY OWNER is responsible for any and all payments necessary for any and all maintenance deemed required by these documents AND THE AHJ! NOW STFU!"

    Then, you and your Code Enforcement people, your Fire Marshal's Office and your line officers all need to have a sit-down and discuss amongst yourself just exactly who is responsible for what, when, where and why.

    And tell your junior G-Man with the FFI badge to go study for FFII instead of putting his nose where it doesn't belong.
    I'm new to the world of code enforcement. But if it is a NEW installation of a sprinkler system shouldn't that just be referred back to the construction department anyway? Fire Officials/Inspectors have to do with maintaining a system properly. If it wasn't installed correctly the construction office needs to correct it. No?

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