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  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Default Vehicles versus Firefighters

    I have been reading the last few days about the tragic deaths of brothers because of being struck by vehicles. I don't know of any hard solution that would work for everyone but it seems that we have to do at least two things:

    1. Take firefighter safety to mean safety at all times.
    2. Prosecute those who have struck firefighters unless it was unavoidable.

    My heart and prayers to the bravest in Miss. and on Long Island who sacrificed so that others may live.

    God Bless America


  2. #2
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    Default

    Whether you are a fire fighter, police officer or construction worker, one of the most dangerous places you can be is on the roadway. However, the Long Island incident points out that even if you take precautions to mark and divert traffic from the area, all it takes is one drunk and the rules of the game are changed. I am assuming that there will be aggressive prosecution of the woman who struck the brother in Roslyn. For my money, there is little difference in driving drunk and firing a gun into the air. They are equally as reckless.

  3. #3
    Forum Member twilson's Avatar
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    Box,
    I agree. Four years ago a friend of mine was a LODD due to being hit by a car. She hit 2 FF and a police office killing the officer and one of the FFs. The other FF was severely injured. The suspect who struck them was issued two minor traffic citations and a $200 fine. I know accidents happen but you should be held accountable for flying though an accident scene and killing a fellow brother and a police officer. Enough said..Stay safe!
    TW

  4. #4
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    George and TWilson:

    I agree with both of you. I asked a Chief on the phone 10 minutes ago what he was telling his firefighters about safety from vehicles. He replied "Watch out for your safety"

  5. #5
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    Windsor, CT
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    Default vehicle accidents

    I am constantly on my crew to be fully aware on the roadway and most especially on the interstates. When I see someone either getting tunnel vision or daydreaming I react very strongly ( even to the point of leading them off the road or placing them in the rig ). Many times I get laughed at when it comes to my safety postion but I don't care. I would rather deal with the ribbing back at the station then a visit to the hospital or worst. My biggest fear is the new members who need to be watched at all times. I have gone so far as buddying up the new members with an experienced crew member and given the order that they are not to become separated.

    I also don't have any problem with closing down large sections of the roadway to our protection. This has caused me to get into discussions with the police ( both local and state ). I know that we each have a job to do and they are not always for the same objective. I was told one day on the highway that for every minute the traffic is held up 50 cars are being backed up. My answer to him was the patients, car owners or my crew are more important to me that any inconvenience to the traveling public. If a police officer orders me to open more road, I pull out the Connecticut state statute that gives me the authority to run the scene once the Fire Department is dispatched. I have heard of cases where the fire officers have been arrested for not following orders from the police. This is why I keep a copy of the statute on me for that very reason.
    "Fire Prevention is our Intention"

  6. #6
    Senior Member FireFighterMO's Avatar
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    Box,
    You must have been on the phone with my Chief.

    About a month ago I put in a request to my F.D. to include Highway Safety Training in our schedule. They said they would look into it, but our schedule was pretty full. Pretty full!?! I say pretty foolish. After our standard 'maid' duties, I spend the rest of the time looking busy until 1700. Pretty full huh?
    Yesterday I watched a 30 min. film on 'Rescue Operations'. (The last time I actually did any hands on training in 'Rescue Operations' was about two years ago.) Then sat around tying knots, and sadly having to show two 15-20 yr. guys a knot or two.
    I hate to say it, but my F.D. does just enough training to write 'Fire Department' on the side of the truck.

  7. #7
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    Default

    I hate to say it, but my F.D. does just enough training to write 'Fire Department' on the side of the truck.
    OUCH. At least your honest about it. I can recall many training sessions in which the only thing that did not occur was training. Good luck Brother!

  8. #8
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    Norfolk, Virginia
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    Default

    I agree with the original post on this topic, its time that firefighters and fire departments look at firefighter safety to mean "all of the time."

    Just two weeks ago, two of our firefighters were struck by a vehicle on the Interstate in the early morning hours while working a car fire. Fortunately, and by the grace of God, neither was killed. One sustained relatively minor injuries, the other more serious injuries and will be out of work for four to six months.

    I implore fire departments to come up with ways to make these situations less dangerous for our firefighters. I also plead with firefighters to, once SOP's are established, FOLLOW THEM. This is all about behavior modification, folks...."saving our own" from needlessly dying or being severely injured...and not just when there's "smoke showing." All of the new equipment, training and SOP's in the world won't change things until the individual firefighters and officers finally take safety seriously on every single incident (including driving to and returning from the incident.)

    **All opinions contained herein are mine and mine alone, and do not represent the opinions of any other individual or organization with which I am affiliated**

  9. #9
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    Black Hawk VFD, South Dakota
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    Default

    I use this question in every class on safety and scene management.

    You are working and incident on a roadway that has not been closed to travel. You should regard every driver approaching the scene as;

    A. Impared (DUI)
    B. Inattentive
    C. Sleepy
    D. Mentally impared
    E. Confused by all the lights
    F. Mad about being delayed
    G. All the above

    As, with most multiple choce questions, G is the best answer.
    You can probably add some more choices to the list.

    We have had many close calls and keep reminding each other to watch your back.

    We had a lady drive throug an accident scene ignoring firefighters and law enforcement until she realized the road was blocked. She slid into a highway patrol cruiser. No real damage to either vehicle. The trooper walked up to the drivers side of her vehicle to be greeted by "Get that damn car out of my way. I'm late and you can't stop me from going through here." Needless to say she was a lot later when the writing was done.

  10. #10
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    Default

    After 2 close calls in the past month we have set up some training and I was asked to draft up an SOG on scene safety for MVAs. If anyone has one they would be willing to share I would appreciate it.
    _________DILLIGAF

  11. #11
    Senior Member kfd232's Avatar
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    Pampa, Texas
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    Default

    While I agree about the safety issues discussed already, I would like to comment on the LODD that occurred in Long Island.

    Why were these firefighters having a drill on a large roadway?? From the firehouse.com website story it seems that they were laying 5 inch and that it must have been dark because flares were utilized. Our roads and highways are dangerous enough during an emergency, I guess I don't see the reason for a drill to be conducted where something like this could occurr. I don't know the area, and maybe that is the only place they had for laying out hose, but from my experience a vacant parking lot works extremely well for any hose drills. Safety is our number one concern, and the less time we spend operating in any capacity on a roadway, the better.


    I am not trying to justify someone driving impaired, but this sounds like it could have been prevented by using a different location for training.



    just my rambling brain.



    Scott Reasor
    Be safe brothers

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