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  1. #1
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    Thumbs down Who has the most Screwed up Department

    During my journeys across the word I have visited with many different
    Fire Departments. Each one seems to believe that theirs is the most
    screwed up of all. Please tell me what your department does that is
    should signify it for the title of the "Most Screwed Up Fire Department in the World".

    Pat Dunn
    let me know if im not clear

    pat


  2. #2
    Forum Member FireCapt1951retired's Avatar
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    I'd have to put my department right near, if not at the top. You ask why? Political correctness run amok. They have chosen nothing but inept administrators for the last 25 years and it isn't going to change. They will continue to expect us to do it all with little or nothing, and the unfortunate thing is, we will.

    The major problems we face now are.

    1. Inadequate staffing levels
    2. Radios that don't work (we've learned to use hand signals and runners)
    3. Poor maintenance on apparatus by the repair shop
    4. No replacement line
    5. Lack of foam for firefighting operations( some companies are still using eductors that are almost 50 years old).
    6. Lack of up to date equipment from SCBA's to axes.
    7. Some Ladder Trucks where the stick still is inoperable.
    8. Only 2 or 3 replacement apparatus and they're falling apart.
    9. Poor training academy standards and operation
    10. Lack of replacement parts for apparatus
    11. Lack of qualified mechanics
    12. Firehouses that are falling down around us.
    13. A computer system that is totally outdated and somewhat useless.
    14. Allowing another city to tap resources we can't afford to send.
    15. A politically correct hiring and training process that needs to be changed.

    How's that for screwed up.
    Last edited by FireLt1951; 07-25-2002 at 05:34 PM.

  3. #3
    Forum Member firenresq77's Avatar
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    Well, I'm not here to give any details of anything........ but

    We all have our problems. Many people vent them on here (which I have been guilty of in the past)

    I guess you can say I've turned over a new leaf. Not too long ago, there was someone who posted some negative comments about his department or chief and he had some disciplinary action taken because of it. (I vaguely remember this and don't know the specifics of it, so please correct me if I'm wrong).

    The main reason I won't post that kind of stuff, and I hope that others won't either, is because it is nobody's business. Yes we all have problems that need fixing, but we all should help try to be a solution for the problem instead of adding to it. A problem cannot be fixed by just saying "here is why we are messed up". We have to take a step back and try to figure out how we can fix it.

    I know we cannot fix all problems and there are many that are out of our hands. All we can do is try to educate those that CAN fix the problem and explain to them why we believe the problem exists, but we also have to offer up a solution to the problem. No, it may not be the solution they want to hear or on =e that will definitely work, but from my experience, this is what we need to do.

    I have addressed many concerns to my chief. He has an open door policy and I take advantage of it. He knows that I am not afraid to "speak my mind" and come to him with problems (after following the proper chain of command). Yes, he will sit there and listen to me explain the problems or situations, but he is more apt to help take care of the situations if I try to offer up possible solutions.

    Sorry to get off topic on this, but I just wanted to explain to everyone why I feel the way I do. We need to address these problems with possible solutions instead of venting them for the whole world to see......

  4. #4
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    Well thanks for posting a reply, but i would still like to know.
    kinda a underlying factor for asking is to help me rule out what
    cities should as well as should not be a perspective city to apply to
    I know every one has problems but some simply are not visiable untill it is to late.
    let me know if im not clear

    pat

  5. #5
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    It is foolish to post your problems here, even more foolish to ask for people to air their dirty laundry. What is even more horrific is that someone would share their problems and then label the department they belong to! If you are using this as a means to decide which cities to submit your application then you need to find a job outside the Fire Department. Every department is screwed up in some way. Every department has their problems. You are not going to find a perfect department. Just apply and learn to live with problems that they present you with.
    How about you telling us about your love life.... same thing

    *Mark

  6. #6
    Forum Member firenresq77's Avatar
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    Mark440 - That was kind of the point I was trying to get across also.

    Thanks for the support!

  7. #7
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    Firenresq77, I've got your 6 Bro!

    *Mark

  8. #8
    Forum Member FireCapt1951retired's Avatar
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    Some departments need their dirty laundry aired. If it brings about one minor change it's worth it. I know that a couple of members here have met some of the administrators at conferences and have brought up the subject and put the administrators in a tough spot, then they returned and made minor changes. I have never had a problem airing the deficientcies within this department, which are well known from FH printing the articles on Detroit a few years ago. Many articles are written in FH and other trade journals that air the problems related to training, staffing, accountability, safety, communications, tactics, equipment and many others within Fire Departments, I see this as being no different, except for the fact that I am writing it and not a journalist or editorial writer. The unfortunate thing is, most problems are not brought to light in any context until a tragedy has occured.

    It's somewhat easier to discuss problems and solutions among themselves in smaller, progressive departments but in some larger non-progressive or should I say stagnent departments it is not as easy to do and sometimes almost impossible. If it had not been for the airing of this departments dirty laundry a few years ago we would definately be worse off than at present. The outcry from some parts of the fire service and the citizens after the article was of more help than trying to sit down and discuss the possible solutions with people who did not care to here it (picture the 3 monkeys here). Until their feet were held to the fire (so to speak) absolutely nothing was accomplished.

    I'm not in fear of losing my position for airing our problems, they already tried to put that fear in me, I'm still here and their gone but usually replaced by the same type of administrators. I don't find it foolish to use a forum where so many problems are discussed effectively with individuals who present excellent ideas and possible solutions. Do I expect to find all the answers here? Absolutely not! The administrators here should be ashamed of themselves for allowing a department with such excellent firefighters to have to struggle everyday just to provide the service we are intended for. I'm proud to command the firefighters here and be commanded by the officers above me because they are a dedicated bunch that will continue to do their jobs regardless of the adversity brought forth by the administration.

    I know that some of our administrators and citizens read these forums and yes my intent is to try and make them aware of the reality of the situation which they usually refuse to see and maybe, just maybe put a little heat on the administrators from the fire service community and the citizens. If you consider that wrong, so be it, you have a right to your opinion. By making our problems public, some changes have occured and yes, they are few. Hopefully more improvements will follow. Beats banging my head aginst a wall just trying to get the administrators to listen and bring progression and safety to this department instead of ignoring it while collecting huge salaries.

    To those who read the Detroit News articles and e-mailed the administration, I thank you, for you have helped to bring about the minor changes we have seen and for those who have questioned the deaprtment administrators at conferences and expo's, I also thank you, you have made a dent (although minor) and for that I am pleased. Sometimes you have to keep hitting politicians over the head with anything possible to get their brains to function in a positive manner.

    On another note, I hope our new appointees decide to stand up to the politicians (especially the CITY COUNCIL) and lay these problems before them, along with solutions for the correction of those problems. To be fair, I will give the new administrators the benefit of the doubt right now and we'll see. They will have the full backing and aid of the firefighters if they choose to do so. All the firefighters ask is that they give 100% to helping this department move forward and not holding us back.
    Last edited by FireLt1951; 07-27-2002 at 02:46 PM.

  9. #9
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    Lt1951, I e-mailed the Detriot press when they published said articles. With your case I do have to agree with you. But where my stance comes from is the smaller departments.
    The DFD is large enough that you will not be punished, as you have said so. But a smaller department, mine for example, would root me out and I would be out of a job. I'm not saying that I am complaining here about my Fire Department, I think it is great. It has its problems just like everything else. I faced the same problems, except 3 man engines, when I worked for the Police Department. I will still say that you should not air your dirty laundry (unless you are in a large force) in public.

    *Mark

  10. #10
    Junior Member ChiefOne2004's Avatar
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    Default Most Screwed Up Department

    If you want to hear about some real problems, check out the Fire Politics site and read the messages in the MAFF or not to MAFF...

    LT1951, I know that MAFF would not be one of your favorite unions to talk about, but even the MPFFU sugessted MAFF, because they are a paid per call volly dept. Many members have been told by the Chief and Asstant Chief (Father-Chief, Asst-Son) that they will never need fulltime (other than the cheif and thier fire inspector-which is a whole nother bee's nest) until the population hits 50000 in 2030.

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