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  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Jul 2001
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    Fairbanks, Alaska
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    Default Are you pro-active?

    Ever get tired of that fat old slob that gets mad every time you mention training or bring up a current pro-active topic, (he probably can't even button his bunker coat!)? Or worse yet, God forbid you might say that Federal fire departments are real fire departments.
    Screw'em. I give the best I got every day at work and it doesn't matter whether I'm on post or off. To do that you gotta be pro-active! Who's with me?


  2. #2
    Member HHoffman's Avatar
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    Dec 1998
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    PA
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    Default

    I feel our training is looked at in a good light. Most of our equipment is new or up to date. As with any department we have members waiting for the retirement bus to pick them up!
    Henry C. Hoffman Jr.

  3. #3
    Member
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    Oct 2000
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    Philadelphia Pa USA
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    Default

    I've heard that "You're not a real Fire Department" line before, and my answer is always the same:

    -Gee...the trucks I ride on are real....the Army Post I work at is real....the soldiers are real, the Fire Chief is real...So are the bull**** details that I get sent out on...and the guns that cause all the brush fires. The unexploded ordnance is real....The chemical/biological agents at the army post are real...the C5 Galaxy Airplanes that land there are real....The CH47 Chinook Helicopters that land there are real...The KC135 airplanes that land there are real.....the tanks, weapons, hummers, assault craft, the Marine Corps Detachment....all the off post working fires we get with the volunteers (maybe they're the ones who arent real but we wont get into that...) are real.....but the absolute most best real thing of all: THE PAYCHECK!!!!! KIND OF HARD TO FAKE THAT!!!
    "Loyalty above all else, except honor."

  4. #4
    Junior Member
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    Jul 2001
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    Fairbanks, Alaska
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    Default

    So Lads,

    I have to admit, I'm a little dissappointed that I didn't get the right people riled up at me. Oh,....I forgot, only real fire dept.'s pay attention to web site's like this.
    Thanks for responding though. Its good to know you're not alone in your ethics.

    I've found that to be progressive in the Federal system you have to get used to being labeled. I'm not concerned about what others think though, I'm out to do my job and I ride for the brand. After all, why would you want to do anything else?


  5. #5
    Junior Member
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    May 1999
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    Watervliet Arsenal FD
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    Default

    I am glad to hear i am not the only one. we have a few here that are definately not interested in getting any new training, but i always give my best. we are surrounded by paid departments with a tight mutual aid plan, but other than the one right outside our gates, we don't move up anywhere until a 3rd alarm at least, the one outside the gate we go on a 1st alarm to the scene of all their fires. what is the deal with these people that don't feel as though we are real departments? speaking of not being real departments.......i guess sunny point, north carolina isn't a real department and that wasn't a real ship board fire they had. stay safe out there brother's.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    Jul 1999
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    From North Pole, AK to Hell, OK
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    Default

    Ben, don't talk about Sperry like that! What's up man! You aren't hard to find, hmmmm, truckie stuff or trying to buck the federal sticks in the mud! I think the internal "we're not a real dept" comes from call volume and the feeling that training time outweighs so disproportionately actual call time. My perception of the external "they're not a real dept" comes from pay difference and comparative ease with which a fed job comes opposed to city ones. And maybe I'm wrong. But thoughts like these don't make the job, when it does come, any easier to do or make training any less important. And as far as being labeled, people who get labeled in the manner that you do, (I know cuz I heard it being a ladderjunkie disciple ) always rise to the top and become the el hefe bombero and the people who label them have to answer to them...Just my $.02.
    Zach Logan
    FF/EMT wannabe. Soontobe? I'll wait til I get my badge!
    ...if you put the handline in the right spot, you won't have to jump out the window...
    -Andy "Nozzles", SQ18, 9-11-01

  7. #7
    Junior Member
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    May 1999
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    Watervliet Arsenal FD
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    2

    Default

    i have to agree with mr. freeze. we have a VERY slow call volume and no training center although we get some good training with mutual aid dept's. using old buildings being torn down. i also kind of agree with it being "easier" to get hired in the federal system. i got hired for my qualifications and experience that i had already accumulated. not from taking some test that has nothing to do with fire fighting and the person taking it has never even picked up a fire hose none the less any other experience. just my thoughts and opinions and as always they do not reflect the opinions of my fire dept. or union. stay safe out there.

  8. #8
    Junior Member
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    Jul 2001
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    Washington DC
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    Default

    Im not sure why everyone thinks of the Federal Fire Department as a fake!! I know in some Rural places you may not run alot of calls. However running 1600 calls a year isnt slow to me for a place with 2 Engines 1 Truck and a Haz-Mat unit. The money is not bad either.. Making 55k a year doesnt seem fake to me. IM! laughing all the way to the bank.

    Yes we have bad apples but the younger guys put them in there place real quick.

    We have a very agressive department and train all the time with surrounding companys.

    See ya on the Big one!!!!!!!!!!! [img]null[/img]
    The toes you step on today may be connected to the butt you have to kiss tomorrow.............

  9. #9
    Forum Member
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    Apr 2001
    Location
    California
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    Default

    Hey "Puppy"

    Earning 55K a year in the D.C. area as a Federal Firefighter must mean you are at least a GS-07 step 7, not exactly a new guy comparing salaries of a city dept vs the feds, at least according to the 2001 locality pay charts....

  10. #10
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    Mar 2001
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    Norfolk, VA USA
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    Default

    I must say that I have heard this before. I am a rookie in the Norfolk Naval Base Fire Dept. and most of the cities around here are pretty busy. Anywhere it seems I go there is always gonna be someone who thinks that becasue I work on a "base" that I am less of a FF/PM or part of a lesser department. The TRUTH: My department does not have as many working fires as the cities. We probably run more flase alarms than any other department in the area. But, we are one of the more progressive departments in this part of VA. We have full Haz-Mat, Technical Rescue, and Water Rescue Teams, all ALS capable engines, aicraft and shipboard trainers, and proactive mutual aid agreements with the surrounding cities. As far as the department within, we do have our "anti-change" personalities. I think we have such a large responsibility to the people we protect on our base that we can't help but be proactive. I am also glad to say that we have a young crop of officers moving up the chain that are not afraid of change. Hopefully as times goes on, we will continue to move towards being even more proactive within the dept.

  11. #11
    MembersZone Subscriber UTFFEMT's Avatar
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    Nov 1999
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    Park City, Utah
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    Default

    I was a Federal Firefighter/Captain for many years. I am now one of those City Slugs. Agreee with you that I really think that the Federal Fire Service gets a bad rap for the most part. Your jobs and training at least from my past DOD experience can go up against most any City Dept out there.

    I actually really miss my Federal days, but life goes on. It is true that the only real difference is that most of the paid City slugs do run many more calls that the Feds, but that is really the only difference. EX-I ran 900-1200 calls for the DOD in Southern Cal. I now run 8500 calls a year in Utah.

    And as you are aware, I bet you are more busy than most of the volley departments and way superior in training than most of the vollies out there.

    Kinda on the same lines, I was a US Forest service Firefighter for aalmost ten years before I transfered to a municipal Dept. My mother was sooo proud of me because she said I was with a real Fire Dept now. ( meaning big red engine).

    That is too bad-I was actually more a firefighter when I was a full-time Brush bunny than a City slug. go figure.

    I think one other thing that infestates the Federal Fire service, is because you are not running calls all day, too many of you fight each other instead of fighting fire, its too bad to, I really think the DOD Firefighters derserve much more credit than you get for your efforts.

    Anyways, just me 2 cents. Sorry to chime in like this.
    Front line since 1983 and still going strong

  12. #12
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    Wright-Patt AFB Ohio
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    Default

    Chief Taylor

    I agree with your statement about fighting with each other. From a Union standpoint, we can not bargain over pay or benefits yet at Wright-Patt, we are still negotiating a contract that expired in 1996! Why is it that we can not agree on simple quality of life issues that cost nothing! We have finally sent the contract to impasse so hopefully we will be signing before 2002. The point is that the Federal Government is military minded and wants total and complete control of every minute of the day without oversite or question. We can be pro-active and progressive without being adversaries. That is the old way, always on opposite sides. We would like to work as a team toward common goals to improve the fire department. Hopefully we will see this after the first of the year when our current chief retires. This is my hope for a pro-active federal department.
    Roy Colbrunn (Tank)
    IAFF Local F-88 Sec/Treas

  13. #13
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    NAS JRB Willow Grove F&ES
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    Default

    This has kind of developed into two threads here. The original question was about being pro-active. But being that and a "real-dept" go kindof hand in hand. For those who say the feds are not real I would say look at your mission statement.(Both us feds and the "real" companies) Somewhere in there should be a line about saving lives and property. We save lives and property by doing the prevention job very well. Starting with the design of facilities, pre-cons, acceptance tests up through monthly building inspections, extinguisher checks, sprinkler flows, etc, etc. It cost so much less in lives and pain to be pro-active and prevent the fire. But then we don't get to ride on the shiny trucks with the reds lights flashing and sirens wailing. Thats part of being an adult and being responsible. I am sure most of us went through that phase in our youth and got most of it served by being in a volunteer company or working forestry (no trucks just red stuff) or mutual aid calls to the "real" fire departments who liked having a paid 24 hour department to call on when their manpower was low or call volume high. But we do the day in day out work of Saving lives and property through prevention, training and constantly looking out for the safety and well being of our base and its people.
    As for pro-active. I don't know many fed bases that are not doing all the right things in expanding our protective level to our clients. Look at the name change now, most of us are no longer Fire Department but Fire & Emergency Services Depts. (If your not check DOD 6055 to see why you are) We do the firefighting (Structural, ARFF, Shipboard & Forestry), Haz-Mat, rescue of all types, EMS, WMD, Urban Search & Rescue, Education, Community Safety programs and anything else our commanders think we can do. We as Feds are real, we are pro-active and we are the first group called on by our bases to provide assistance whenever they have an emergency of any type.

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