1. #1
    Junior Member

    Join Date
    May 2001
    La Junta, CO

    Default MD Firefighters Helping Out

    I was watching my local news this evening and I heard a story about five firefighters from MD that went to NY to help out during the rescue efforts. According to the news these firefighters went to NY on their days off, when they had returned to work they were given a plaque from there Chief commending them. Then he turns around and suspends them for going to NY. I m not sure how others depts run but if its your day off, your off correct and for them to leave there families behind and go to NY to help out they should be commended not punished. I guess the administration these days are becoming, well I will leave it at that for now. I m sure we all have had that run in with that brass heavy admin. Let me here your thoughts on this.

    Stay safe and watch each others backs.

  2. #2
    Junior Member

    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Chestertown Vol. Fire Dept.


    here is a story in reference to it, if interested im sure you can find more informaiton on any of the baltimore news websites www.insidebaltimore.com www.wjz.com www.sunspot.net

    this is a direct link to one of the stories

    just to add a few items that arent in the story,the plaque was given to one of the volunteers by his boss, not the chief, and one of the others, a single mother of three, lost her job as a result of going to NY.

    not expressing any opinions here you decide for yourself.

    [ 10-03-2001: Message edited by: fd186 ]

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Nov 2000


    The first question is - did they go because they had something tangible to contribute, like specialized training and/or equipment? Apparently they weren't part part of a FEMA Task Force. Or was it to satisfy their need to be a "part of the action" or to have some kind of bragging rights? I don't know, just posing the question.

    And second, were they really part of the solution or part of the problem? The problems associated with a disorganized effort are numerous, command and control is the big one but there are many more. Moreover, if everyone rushed off on their own volition to the scene of a national disaster, who would be left to take care of the home front?

    The fact is that FDNY was in charge and they specifically requested no more individual volunteers or direct assistance other than that which they specifically requested through FEMA to state EMA's. They said they had more than enough help and were actually turning away people. The IAFF, IAFC and many state associations made it very clear to their members that sending unsolicited help was not the thing to do and would be counter-productive.

    I'm sure it felt good to these people to go and be a part, even in a small way, of the rescue effort. I wanted to go and help too, as did all the brothers in my company, but often the right thing to do is not the thing we most want to do. There is a quality called discipline that is essential in this business.

    Day on vs. day off? Pretty much irrelevant. You're a firefighter 24/7, you represent your department 24/7. If their actions had gotten them in trouble it would have reflected poorly on their department as well as themselves.

    The problem is, on one hand, wanting to help is natural for us firefighters and for that they might be commended under different circumstances. On the other hand, without order and discipline there is chaos and confusion. If they were told not to go, as they should have been, and they went - in my book that means they were wrong.

    DTRT = Do The Right Thing.

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