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Thread: I was browsing Backstep Firefighter today....

  1. #21
    Forum Member snowball's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    I never stated that physicals and P/T standards did not have value in the fire service.

    Again, my biggest issue with required physicals for the rural fire service is the cost, and the fact that the money in many of these departments simply does not exist and to meet that requirement, they likely will have to cut equally important areas such as PPE and SCBA replacement, training and communications. In some departments with very limited budgets it could even impact the ability to purchase fuel.

    And there will be some very significant manpower impacts as well.
    What is the cost and impact to manpower of t/x-ing 3 to 5 members per incident for heat related illness? And as it has been explained to you before, it does not cost one red cent to fit in a p/t requirement. There are ways of getting fit without the expense of joining a gym. There are plenty of workouts already put together for free on the interwebs.
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  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    I never stated that physicals and P/T standards did not have value in the fire service.

    Not directly, but you have argued against them everytime they have been mentioned.

    Again, my biggest issue with required physicals for the rural fire service is the cost, and the fact that the money in many of these departments simply does not exist and to meet that requirement, they likely will have to cut equally important areas such as PPE and SCBA replacement, training and communications. In some departments with very limited budgets it could even impact the ability to purchase fuel.

    Doesn't cost as much as hospitilation for a cardiac event that occurred during an incident...

    And there will be some very significant manpower impacts as well.

    Significant? Really? You have that many peple on your FD that even you admit couldn't get medically cleared to be firefighters? That says far more about you and your leadership than anything you have ever said here. Essentially you will accept anyone as long as they can walk through the door, no matter what their physical condition is.
    This post by you would be funny except you are serious.
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    Not directly, but you have argued against them everytime they have been mentioned.

    Yes I have, because of both the financial and manpower impacts on the volunteer fire service, especially in rural areas.

    I have also stated that if a department chooses to utilize physicals, fine, as they are doing it as a choice. I have stated that they should not be mandated.


    Doesn't cost as much as hospitilation for a cardiac event that occurred during an incident...

    True, but much of that will be covered by workman's comp and will not come out of the fire department budget, as the cost of the physicals would.


    Significant? Really? You have that many peple on your FD that even you admit couldn't get medically cleared to be firefighters? That says far more about you and your leadership than anything you have ever said here. Essentially you will accept anyone as long as they can walk through the door, no matter what their physical condition is.

    My combo department would likely lose 3-5 members, which is not a significant number as we have over 80 firefighting and support members, and would have no real impact on operations. My VFD would likely lose 1-2 members, and would have some impact on operations.

    However, I know of several rural departments that could easily lose 20-25% of their already very limited membership and it would have a very significant affect on their operations. And I'm sure that would be true throughout most of the state, as well as neighboring states.
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  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Not directly, but you have argued against them everytime they have been mentioned.

    Yes I have, because of both the financial and manpower impacts on the volunteer fire service, especially in rural areas.

    I have also stated that if a department chooses to utilize physicals, fine, as they are doing it as a choice. I have stated that they should not be mandated.


    Doesn't cost as much as hospitilation for a cardiac event that occurred during an incident...

    True, but much of that will be covered by workman's comp and will not come out of the fire department budget, as the cost of the physicals would.


    Significant? Really? You have that many peple on your FD that even you admit couldn't get medically cleared to be firefighters? That says far more about you and your leadership than anything you have ever said here. Essentially you will accept anyone as long as they can walk through the door, no matter what their physical condition is.

    My combo department would likely lose 3-5 members, which is not a significant number as we have over 80 firefighting and support members, and would have no real impact on operations. My VFD would likely lose 1-2 members, and would have some impact on operations.

    However, I know of several rural departments that could easily lose 20-25% of their already very limited membership and it would have a very significant affect on their operations. And I'm sure that would be true throughout most of the state, as well as neighboring states.
    If I understand correctly -having a guy go down with a cardiac event is the lesser of two evils because workman's comp pays for it as opposed to coming out of the FDs budget? -Where do you think the $ for workman's comp comes from ? Maybe not directly from the FDs budget, but it comes from the taxpayers. And dang buddy, have you not figured out that some times people die from "cardiac events" ? -Oh heck I guess that doesn't matter either cause the LOD benefits don't come directly out of the FDs budget either.
    ?

  5. #25
    the 4-1-4 Jasper 45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Yes I have, because of both the financial and manpower impacts on the volunteer fire service, especially in rural areas.

    I have also stated that if a department chooses to utilize physicals, fine, as they are doing it as a choice. I have stated that they should not be mandated.
    Is the workman's comp payout free? Who pays for that? What happens when there is a cardiac event at a fire scene? Do your guys just stand around and watch? I mean, I could believe that given your philosophy; it probably wouldn't be "your job", or it "never happened before". Want your fire scene to go to sh it, have a guy go down with some kind of medical crisis. Who is paying out for the PSOB benefit, should a member die?

    Ever taken any grants? Federal or otherwise? I'll give you the same answer we get when costs go up and impacts are felt on our budgets. In fact, these answers come from people who you ascribe to be like, politically; FIGURE IT OUT.

    Unless you aren't taking any kind of money from grants, shared revenue or any other funding sources, save for the tax payers of that community, the choice isn't yours. That includes PSOB benefits for families. Don't take it.
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  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by slackjawedyokel View Post
    If I understand correctly -having a guy go down with a cardiac event is the lesser of two evils because workman's comp pays for it as opposed to coming out of the FDs budget? -Where do you think the $ for workman's comp comes from ? Maybe not directly from the FDs budget, but it comes from the taxpayers. And dang buddy, have you not figured out that some times people die from "cardiac events" ? -Oh heck I guess that doesn't matter either cause the LOD benefits don't come directly out of the FDs budget either.
    Never did I say that members should not be screened for cardiac issues, as that can be done through a simple question or set of medical history questions on the application regarding medical history. The department obviously has the right to exclude anyone who indicates that they may have specific conditions.

    If there is a question regarding fitness, it certainly should be the department's option to send him for physical or contact his physician regarding his condition which is exactly what my department did after my cardiac events, and the physician cleared me for continued duty as there was no permanent damage. When I applied to my VFD I informed them of my history and they also contacted my physician, who cleared me.

    As far as the cost of an event, the money in this case comes from the pool contributed by the contributing members to workman's comp.

    Again, I have no issues with any department CHOOSING to implement physicals or physical standards. MY VFD requires that any new member who is applying as an interior firefighter complete a physical test including a run, pushups, hose drag, dummy drag and axe striking station while in gear and SCBA (not on air). As of yet, my combo department does not have such a test for volunteer members.

    My is issue, and always will be, mandating such as they will have significant financial and manpower affects if required for all members - including exterior or driver-only - that will drastically affect fire protection in many small communities.
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  7. #27
    MembersZone Subscriber JohnVBFD's Avatar
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    It's the perfect circular logic. You all should know it by now. It's cheaper to bury a firefighter one time than it is for any physical/medical screenings yearly. As an added incentive the more we keep our LODD numbers over 100 of which half are from post fireground related health reasons, the more he can scream and beat the safety drum. It's complete circular reasoning that justifies his existence in his own mind. Eliminate all the potential LODD/LODI and you eliminate his self appointed reason for being around any fire station.

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    Hypocrite that is all you are LA. On one post you state that you main concern for you tactical decisions on the fire ground is your members being returned with no injuries. However when it comes to the health and wellness that's another story. Absurd!! Cardiac events are the number one killer of fireman! You blame funding and the impact it will have on staffing. Total bs. What options has your department explored for funding. How much would it cost to send every volunteer to a physical? Surely you know and have gotten estimates since you say we cant afford it.

    How are you career members not required to have a OSHA respirator physical year? Or does the state of LA not require it? But wait isn't that us department of labor law?
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  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnVBFD View Post
    It's the perfect circular logic. You all should know it by now. It's cheaper to bury a firefighter one time than it is for any physical/medical screenings yearly. As an added incentive the more we keep our LODD numbers over 100 of which half are from post fireground related health reasons, the more he can scream and beat the safety drum. It's complete circular reasoning that justifies his existence in his own mind. Eliminate all the potential LODD/LODI and you eliminate his self appointed reason for being around any fire station.
    So explain to me how physicals are the cur all for fire service line of duty deaths yet we routinely have career members in thier 30's and 40's, who I assume are having physicals, keeling over from cardiac events?

    The fact is most fire service deaths in members less than 50 are from underlying conditions that a basic physical will not detect. In fact, even an NFPA physical will not detect them. So how deep do we go, and at what cost?

    What do we exclude?

    What do we do with the career members that have those conditions that should preclude them from the job? We cannot afford to put them all on light duty so do we just let them go before they qualify for retirement, because that will become an issue.

    And what about the 55 plus crowd? most of them will likely have underlying conditions, so do we just kick them off the volunteer rosters and cripple many rural VFDs?

    In this area an NFPA physical runs close to $400, and there is one place that does them. For my VFD that would be close to 8K per year, and we simply don't have that. For my career department it would be almost 50K per year for our 60 or so line members.

    If you want to have yearly physicals at your department for all your members, have at it. I have no issues with any department choosing to do that, but there is no way that it should be mandated.
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  10. #30
    the 4-1-4 Jasper 45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    So explain to me how physicals are the cur all for fire service line of duty deaths yet we routinely have career members in thier 30's and 40's, who I assume are having physicals, keeling over from cardiac events?
    Well, there aren't necessarily physicals being given everywhere. It's something that is being fought for in many places, but isn't being done everywhere. However, it is about much more than just a physical. This job is very physically demanding and places extremes of stress on the cardiac-respiratory system. It is a medical fact that an elevated core temperature has an extreme impact on the heart and lungs of all people. Coupled with an adrenalin surge, crazy things can happen to a persons body.

    A simple fact is that when you place the body under extreme conditions, such as at a fire scene, throw in over heating the core due to work, heat from the outside temp or working inside with gear being worn, then you add in adrenalin and dehydration, it isn't that far of a stretch to see how arrhythmia develops. Physicals are a very important component in the process, but they are just one of several components that include true fitness and improved diet.


    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    The fact is most fire service deaths in members less than 50 are from underlying conditions that a basic physical will not detect. In fact, even an NFPA physical will not detect them. So how deep do we go, and at what cost?
    Really? You're a doctor now? Please, provide a link to the medical study that states this information as fact.



    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    What do we do with the career members that have those conditions that should preclude them from the job? We cannot afford to put them all on light duty so do we just let them go before they qualify for retirement, because that will become an issue.
    Figure it out.



    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    And what about the 55 plus crowd? most of them will likely have underlying conditions, so do we just kick them off the volunteer rosters and cripple many rural VFDs?
    Figure it out.

    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    In this area an NFPA physical runs close to $400, and there is one place that does them. For my VFD that would be close to 8K per year, and we simply don't have that. For my career department it would be almost 50K per year for our 60 or so line members.
    Figure it out. If you were really concerned with trying to reduce line-deaths and injuries you wouldn't be making such stupid statements and excuses. The fact is that you would be putting effort into trying to problem solve it. This is why no one will ever take you serious on any topic. All you do is make excuses. Guess what; it's a changing world out there. The tools we're being given to do this job are being changed. We now know more about the medical impact this job has on our bodies and we need to adjust how we do business, unless of course, you really aren't concerned with improving...


    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    If you want to have yearly physicals at your department for all your members, have at it. I have no issues with any department choosing to do that, but there is no way that it should be mandated.
    Then don't take the PSOB benefit. Don't take any shared revenue from your state. Don't apply for any AFG/SAFER grants. Don't take any presumptive cancer benefits or heart and lung for your department(s).
    Last edited by Jasper 45; 06-18-2013 at 08:27 AM.
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  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by LAFE
    simply backing away from the incident and allowing nature to take it's course.
    I'm pretty sure if that's what the homeowner wanted, they wouldn't have called the fire department.... I'm pretty sure if the idea was to "let nature take it's course" in regards to a fire, no one would pay the taxes to fund the fire department.... I'm pretty sure if the idea was "let nature take it's course" the fire department wouldn't exist.....

    Quote Originally Posted by LAFE
    Funny thing is that I don't "allow" anything ...... The Chief officers make policy.
    So, today you aren't allowing anything. Okay. But tomorrow you're not going to allow people to make an interior attack, right? How does that work? Is it strictly an every-other day schedule where you allow things and then don't have any influence? Does your influence operate on the 24/48 schedule? Do you get a Kelly Day? Does your influence use the California schedule? I'm just trying to figure it out so I know which angle you're going to reply with on any given day.....

    Quote Originally Posted by LAFE
    Not so much the heat, but the humidity accompanying the heat.
    Because Bossier Parish is the only place it's ever humid....

    Quote Originally Posted by LAFE
    It's not uncommon for most departments in this area to transport 3-5 members for heat related problems during significant fires and even extended MVA extrication operations.
    So, it's okay to send them out for heat related injuries from standing in the yard, but if they get hurt trying to save people and property, that's a no-no?

    Quote Originally Posted by LAFE
    True, but much of that will be covered by workman's comp and will not come out of the fire department budget, as the cost of the physicals would.
    But an injury sustained interior while trying to save lives and protect property isn't covered by workmans comp?

    Quote Originally Posted by LAFE
    My VFD would likely lose 1-2 members, and would have some impact on operations.
    You would first have to conduct some sort of "operations" for anything to have an impact on it.

    Quote Originally Posted by LAFE
    My is issue, and always will be, mandating such as they will have significant financial and manpower affects if required for all members - including exterior or driver-only - that will drastically affect fire protection in many small communities.
    But God forbid that physical that you mandated and may have inconvenienced your member or department slightly save the lives of someone with a hidden cardiac issue..... You're all about "everyone going home" yet you shun the idea of a screening or a physical that could potentially save someones life.... And again, your department would have to offer some sort of fire protection in order for a physical to drastically affect it.

    Quote Originally Posted by LAFE
    And what about the 55 plus crowd? most of them will likely have underlying conditions, so do we just kick them off the volunteer rosters and cripple many rural VFDs?
    Department 2 has an age cap at 65..... We're doing just fine membership wise.... Keep making excuses.
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  12. #32
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    Originally Posted by LaFireEducator
    And what about the 55 plus crowd? most of them will likely have underlying conditions, so do we just kick them off the volunteer rosters and cripple many rural VFDs?
    As a member of that crowd... really?

    I am on zero meds.. you read that right, zero meds. I keep up with the "kids" and still work just about every opportunity that comes up in the burn building at the Academy.

    I know plenty of firefighters in that age group that run rings around the probies in ther FD's, career, call and volunteer.

    If they cannot do the job or perform the function as a firefighter, they are just an illusion of a fire department.
    Last edited by DeputyChiefGonzo; 06-18-2013 at 12:13 PM. Reason: spelling correction.
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  13. #33
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    I have seen BackStep's words come true. In our dept. and surrounding depts. the mindset was to make sure that EGH. So suddenly we would look at things that were dangerous and stop doing them. Brilliant! Now we don't have to put SCBA on, do hose drills, practice situational awareness, do a size up, and the list goes on and on. The medical standards went down. The morale went down. The dedication went down, but the sale of I fight what you fear t-shirts went up. The lazy buggers multiplied because we did not have to do anything strenuous. We decided to put ourselves first at the cost of the tax-payer. The safety kick made no one safer, not the citizens or the firefighters.
    Last edited by conrad427; 06-18-2013 at 11:40 AM.
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  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    True, but much of that will be covered by workman's comp and will not come out of the fire department budget, as the cost of the physicals would.
    So NOW they are covered by Worker's Compensation? You have said repeatedly as one of your pathetic excuses for not chancing your vollies getting a Boo Boo that they didn't have Worker's Compensation. See Bobby, this is what happens when you fabricate nonsense, you have to remember it all or you just look like a pathetic liar.
    Last edited by FyredUp; 06-18-2013 at 11:33 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeputyChiefGonzo View Post
    Originally Posted by LaFireEducator


    As a member of that crowd... really?

    I am on zero meds.. you read that right, zero meds. I keep up with the "kids" and still work just about every opportunity that comes up in the burn building at the Academy.

    I know plenty of firefighters in that age group that run rings around the probies in ther FD's, career, call and volunteer.

    If they cannot do the job or perform the function as a firefighter, they are just an illusion of a fire department.
    Retire old man, make room for a youngster like me!!
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  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    Retire old man, make room for a youngster like me!!
    I'll retire when I am good and ready.. . but I will tell you this.. I will not be one the guys hanging by their fingertips onto the door frame of the firehouse at the maximum retirement age pleading to stay. I have seen far too many people do this only to retire at 65 and read their obituaries a few months later.
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  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeputyChiefGonzo View Post
    I'll retire when I am good and ready.. . but I will tell you this.. I will not be one the guys hanging by their fingertips onto the door frame of the firehouse at the maximum retirement age pleading to stay. I have seen far too many people do this only to retire at 65 and read their obituaries a few months later.
    9 work days and I am retired from the career FD. I will still teach, be on my 2 POC FDs, and be dabbling in other fire related interests. Still love the job, it was just time to go...
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  18. #38
    Forum Member snowball's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    So explain to me how physicals are the cur all for fire service line of duty deaths yet we routinely have career members in thier 30's and 40's, who I assume are having physicals, keeling over from cardiac events?

    The fact is most fire service deaths in members less than 50 are from underlying conditions that a basic physical will not detect. In fact, even an NFPA physical will not detect them. So how deep do we go, and at what cost?

    What do we exclude?

    What do we do with the career members that have those conditions that should preclude them from the job? We cannot afford to put them all on light duty so do we just let them go before they qualify for retirement, because that will become an issue.

    And what about the 55 plus crowd? most of them will likely have underlying conditions, so do we just kick them off the volunteer rosters and cripple many rural VFDs?
    And here's the weenie. This post screams self preservation. You're fighting this so hard because you'd be cutting your own throat if your department mandated yearly physicals and p/t minimum standards.
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  19. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    So NOW they are covered by Worker's Compensation? You have said repeatedly as one of your pathetic excuses for not chancing your vollies getting a Boo Boo that they didn't have Worker's Compensation. See Bobby, this is what happens when you fabricate nonsense, you have to remember it all or you just look like a pathetic liar.
    Never said that.

    I have always stated that they had workman's comp for medical bills as it's a state law that all FD's have workman's comp.

    However, I have stated numerous times that LA workman's comp does not provide wage protection to volunteer firefighters.

    It is for that reason that I will not commit them to a situation where they may be injured.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeputyChiefGonzo View Post
    Originally Posted by LaFireEducator


    As a member of that crowd... really?

    I am on zero meds.. you read that right, zero meds. I keep up with the "kids" and still work just about every opportunity that comes up in the burn building at the Academy.

    I know plenty of firefighters in that age group that run rings around the probies in ther FD's, career, call and volunteer.

    If they cannot do the job or perform the function as a firefighter, they are just an illusion of a fire department.
    That's great.

    But given that LA is one of the unhealthiest states in the nation, that is the exception here and not the norm.
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