1. #1
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    Default 88788 121 3310 .... Wonder what thats about?

    88,788 members of the FH.COM forums.

    Of those 88,788 members, there have only been 121 posts on a thread dealing with how to reduce LODD for all firefighters.

    There have been 3310 views of the thread, but that number is skewed since every time a members views the thread it adds a number.

    The 121 posts have been made by less than 50 members (a guess, but close I think)

    So......WHERE IN THE HECK ARE THE REST OF YOU????


    No Firefighter Should Ever Die Again

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    Default

    I am not saying the thread is not worth posting to, I am sure it is. But with 125 messages, it takes a long time to read and take it in.

    I have viewed the first two pages of the thread but not the rest. In addition, I do not feel like I can contribute in a meaningful manner at this time.

    Give some of us time to catch up.

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    Unhappy Someone Has To Say It..........

    So, I guess the job is mine......... An extremely harsh question, but does everyone care?? I can't help but wonder sometimes. Also, And this is even harder to voice, but are all the LODD's really that?? A discussion that I heard one day at a regional gathering centered on whether LODD should include incidents where the deceased was not involved in Emergency Operations ?? I am under the impression that the person asking was referring to someone who dies "on duty" but not as a result of an Emergency Response, ie: someone assigned to an office job who has a cardiac emergency at the office, vs a Firefighter who dies as a result of injuries on an Emergency Scene??
    Of course, we're all Brothers and Sisters, and the loss of one is one too many. I'm not an advocate of the questions that I raised, only passing along what I heard and looking for some thoughts. Last, The 88,788 reflects the total number of people who registered to post since FH Forums started, it's not current, as many, if not most, moved on to other interests. Stay Safe, Harve
    Last edited by hwoods; 07-12-2004 at 09:51 AM.
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    So, I guess the job is mine......... An extremely harsh question, but does everyone care?? I can't help but wonder sometimes. Also, And this is even harder to voice, but are all the LODD's really that??
    All due repsect Harve, if they don't care they need to. This discussion is revolving around the 111 (I think that is right) deaths reported out through FEMA.

    IT NEEDS TO BE EVERYONE'S RESPONSIBILITY TO CARE!

    I'll give you the number being inacurate, but now stop posting here and go to thread and add your two cents.

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    I haven't had a chance to read the responses on the actual thread yet so I am not sure what has been posted so far.

    I was in Pheonix a couple weeks ago for their Health and Safety Sympossium. One of the presenters went over the work done so far by LODD summit. I have also been following it through different email lists, FH.com, etc. A lot of common sense is listed and most of us who read it think "Yea, we need to do that."

    Rich Duffy of the IAFF had an interesting take though. He called it the Kumbahya Summit. He agrees with everything listed, but his premise is most of it should already be happening.

    There is discussion about medical exminations, fitness and wellness, etc to prevent LODDs from MIs. Guess what... programs addressing this have been out there for years. The IAFC/IAFF Wellness-Fitness Inniative addressed all of this years ago. NFPA 1582 addresses it. We just have to follow it. Why don't we? Because it cost us to much (career departments) or it will cost us members (volunteer departments).

    Wear your seatbelt, slow down, stop... All common sense BUT... I saw people here justifying riding the tailboard a few weeks ago.

    The list goes on.

    People who work with me will tell you that I am dedicated to FF safety and wellness. I will follow the work of this group and use it however I can to make a positive impact in my department. I will also not hold my breath that it will have anymore of a positive effect on the global fire service community then the programs already in place. This is unfortunate.

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    Default Posting on a thread does not imply interest or compliance

    I participated in the Kumbya summit. Here is the deal: (In decending order of frequency)

    Heart Attacks:
    Over 50 - get in shape, stay near an AED (we suggested that maybe we should prohibit firefighting from anyone over 49 years old. Sorry Harve, it affects me too!)
    Under 50 - stop smoking, stop excessive drinking, get regular physicals, be physically fit. (We probably should outlaw practicing alcoholics from participating as firefighters.)

    Fatal Transportation Accidents:
    Sit down and wear your seat belt (immediate reduction of 12 - 15 LODDs per year)
    Don't drive when drunk/stoned/high
    [not from the summit - but NO Code 3 responses by any firefighter under 21 years old - just how many more adrenaline/testosterone amped 17 years olds need to die or kill before we say this is a dumb practice?]

    Use your issued safety equipment:
    PPE
    SCBA
    Thermal Imagers
    Radios
    [If you have read the last couple of years of NIOSH reports - there are LODD fires where the thermal imager was left on the rig, used by someone with inadequate training or not operating. Radio systems are equally weak.]

    Use an incident management/firefighter accountability system.

    With the exception of the thermal imager, the same recommendations could be made in 1994.

    If you are attending the Expo, Gordon Routley is making a presentation about the NFFF LODD summit.

    Beyond the summit - the proposed Phoenix "Blue Card" system for structural firefighting may be an approach to assure firefighters AND fire officers demonstrate competent fireground behavior.

    Mike
    Last edited by MikeWard; 07-12-2004 at 01:13 PM.

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    Default

    Dave:
    I think that I can come up with a more logical and controversial reason:
    Because it doesn't have bells and boobs!
    As I said in the thread; most are more interested in reading about firefighters getting busted at a porn ball or are more interested in how many flashes a Dashlaser bluelight will emit than how to stop firefighters from dying.
    Look at the condolence threads. Everytime will lose another, we come out of the woodwork for the 5 minutes that it takes to post a condolence and then, it's back to business as usual.
    The only way that firefighter deaths will be reduced by this bunch of apathetic arse holes is to LEGISLATE it! But then; they will break the rules because they believe that they are above the law or that no one in their right mind will bust a fire department. Want to bet?
    No, Dave; talking about something that is important and righteous isn't as fun or glamorous as female firefighter calendars or lightbars or "Weird-But True".
    If it matters, then it should be in the textbooks and training classes...Oh, wait; it is!
    Nevermind.
    CR
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    Default

    I hear your point Dave, but as has been pointed out previously, its maybe not a matter of who cares or who does not care as it is "change".

    Change of the way to think, change to the way of doing and change to attitudes on all of the above.

    Those who answered are likely the ones who in some fashion are trying to effect useful change either at home or elsewhere. There will also be some who know change is needed, but do not know how to encourage it to happen. And there will be some who are trying, but they are not getting the needed support from the Senior officers or elected officials etc.

    To accept change is an attitude and a choice. Some are willing to accept change, some are not. Humans are finniky that way sometimes.
    If you don't do it RIGHT today, when will you have time to do it over? (Hall of Fame basketball player/coach John Wooden)

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    MW-

    "I participated in the Kumbya summit. Here is the deal: (In decending order of frequency"

    Hey Mike,

    Glad someone knew how to correctly spell Kumbya. Please don't misunderstand me I think anytime we talk about ways to reduce LODDs it is productive. I just found Rich Duffy's take on it interesting. Simply, follow the rules and plans that are already in place.

    MW-

    Heart Attacks:
    Over 50 - get in shape, stay near an AED (we suggested that maybe we should prohibit firefighting from anyone over 49 years old. Sorry Harve, it affects me too!)
    Under 50 - stop smoking, stop excessive drinking, get regular physicals, be physically fit.


    Fortunately I turn 50 thirty days prior to my thirty year anniversary so I won't be doing this past 50. It is amazing to look at the states for FFs over 50.

    Regular physicals- Part of the IAFC/IAFF Wellness-Fitness inniative. This has been out there for years. Fitness and ability testing has also been out there for years also. Why do we fight this? Loss of membership or expense.

    The emergency response issues are cultural and I believe the changes there can only be made two ways.

    Zero Tolerance policies by Chiefs- Run a red light and you don't drive. Period. Won't wear your seat belt so you can get your SCBA on enroute, take the SCBAs out of the cab.

    Company Officer Leadership- Company officers who won't let the vehicle move until everyone is buckled up. Company officers who won't tolerate reckless driving. I preach "Be slow and right instead of fast and wrong" and get out the door quick so we don't have to make it up on the road.

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    (We probably should outlaw practicing alcoholics from participating as firefighters.)
    As if we weren't short handed enough already. We tried it and it didn't work.

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    Thumbs up This Discussion needs to continue.........

    This is something that we need to continue to work on. Of course, as expected, I don't agree that an arbitrary age limit is appropriate, A fitness limit, yes, but not age alone. And there are a lot of other things to look at. How many died despite doing everything right? Some LODDs were, in my eyes, murder. A Brother was doing it by the book, but died anyway, because someone else, totally beyond any Fire Service control, did something stupid. I would have liked to have been able to offer something when a big meeting of the minds looked at this problem, but I learned about it after the fact. I have a few ideas that could save a few lives as well as anyone else. 1. Traffic Control. I SHUT DOWN TRAFFIC when we operate in the street. I get a lot of static, but I have thick skin. 2.Training. TRAIN WHERE YOU FIGHT FIRE. In a real building, built to be something other than a Fire Training Structure. We use "Acquired structures, follow NFPA 1403, and learn our job in the real world. There's a lot more, but I'll quit for now, Dave, I really do care, but it seems a lot more complex than something you and I can Fix. We do owe it to those coming behind us to try, and I will.
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    Default

    I have not taken the time to read the thread, but it does not mean that I do not care about reducing fatalaties and injuries.Some of us are banging our heads against the wall, out there teaching and preaching safety and trying to make some changes.It will take time for changes to take effect, but we are out there teaching, trying to help make the changes.

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    Perhaps some people will not join in a conversation like that because of the history of people being pounded into the ground if they ever have a dissenting opinion.

    Now having said that here is my opinion.

    A culture change in the entire fire service while noble is not my concern. My concern is that change at my local level. If I can get my FD to embrace the things we need to do to further our safety, our citizens safety and our efficiency then I am successful in effecting change. In order for change to occur it has 2 paths, internal changes brought on by both top down and bottom up efforts, external changes brought on by legislation or the fear of litigation.

    My small Fd has made major strides in the past few years to enhance our firefighter safety. Some of these may seem like nothing to others but are significant to us.

    1) Total upgrade in PPE for every firefighter.
    2) New SCBA's complete with SEMS personal accountability system.
    3) Mandated training level that all FF's must achieve within their first year on the FD.
    4) Mandated driver training through the Vo-tech system in order to operate our apparatus.
    5) Every interior team with a portable radio, with more radios on order to further increase this capability.
    6) Training on the IMS, that is compatible with our neighbors.
    7) Changing the mindset of firefighters to embrace the "Risk alot to save alot, risk little to save a little, risk nothing to save nothing" philosophy.
    8) Total sobriety or stay home.
    9) Annual driver's license back ground checks to ensure legal ability to drive and the insurance company will tell us at times that certain people cannot drive due to their records.
    10) All FF's seated and belted before the apparatus moves.
    11) The concept that when we are training or at our meetings that everyone is valuable and everyone has a voice to express concerns or desire to try new ideas or equipment.
    12) Continual training on a monthly basis and an department philosophy that as long as the budget allows any FF can go to any FF training class available.

    A lot of these may seem like small steps to some but in rural small town America these have been huge.

    I sit here now waiting to be trashed by someone who's superiority is just waiting to tell me I am wrong.

    FyredUp

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    Thumbs up FyredUp.......................

    YOU ARE NOT WRONG Meaningful change results from efforts like yours, keep it up.
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    Some of us are banging our heads against the wall,
    I stopped banging my head because all it did was give me a headache. Anyone who has read my posts knnows that I have been very vocal about what I see as needing to be changed in my particular department. My posts have stired up resentment from those on these boards and led to some 'interesting' exchanges.
    After years of trying to get some things changed-No Drinking, More relevant training, minimun standards applied to all, etc.- I finally decided that I was just wasteing my time and sending my already high blood pressure even higher. I quit the Board since the only member on the Board with any power is the Chief who can veto any board decision without reason. I stopped trying to find extra training outside of our department that we may attend (it costs too much. It's free but it's too far to drive. bla bla bla.). Things have not gotten better. We have continued to loose members.
    Training? It's a joke on the rare occasions it happens.
    I get phone calls from firefighters who don't know what to do. I answer my cellphone when I'm out of town and have a firefighter who has been on the department for more than 2 years asking, "What truck do I take to a Carbon Monoxide alarm call? The Rescue/Service or the pumper? Then what do I do when I get there? Can you respond? I don't think anyone else is coming." Or how about a State certified Medical First Responder who was sent to a BS class taught by an instructor who just told war stories and never even gave a test or practicals for the class? Now that First Responder is calling my cellphone to see if I heard the page to a medical call in our district. He's enroute with the Rescue truck but doesn't know how to take BP, Pulse, resp or any other vitals. He's hoping that I'll be there to be the EMT on scene and cover his butt since he's thinking that he's the only one rolling to that call. Problem is that I'm 500 miles away in Texas at a frigging Ham Radio convention and I have to tell him I wish him luck and hang up.
    So when training is finally scheduled do we have a class on how to handle CO2 calls or practice basic medical skills? Do we have a class on properly filling out EMS and Fire Run Reports so the Chief can stop bitching about how the reports are never done correctly? No. We have 'portable pond' training so we can set up our 'pool', spray some water, have water wars and swim some in the hot July sun. Did I mention that our FD has never used the pond outside of training and we have SOG against drafting because of a past incident of pumps being damaged by debris sucked in during drafting or pond use. Even when responding to a tug boat fire along the Mississippi River we still shuttled water and nursed tankers instead of setting up the pond or suctioning directly from the river.
    Gripeing about it doesn't change a thing. It's sad that we loose over 100 FFs a year but I'm just trying to keep myself alive in a department which is one step away from a major lawsuit. So if I don't contribute to the other thread it's because I have nothing useful to add to the 10 pages of posts already there.
    Steve aka cellblock

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    Default Reducing LODD requires local leadership

    I agree that talking about these issues contribute to awareness and, sometimes, to action.

    The tough nut is that effecting change requires LOCAL leadership in order to set standard and change the culture. There are no flames, bells or boobs. In fact, you may get a lot of grief from your peers.

    One of the few noticable trends from Gordon Routley's analysis of LODD is that, as a group, the firefighters 50 or older have a much higher heart attack LODD than any other group. I agree with Harve and RE33FFX, there are existing fitness standards that appropriately address this issue.

    For a contrast, check out this "300 club" thread on another website: http://www.thewatchdesk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=6272

    Harve makes a great point about so many of the LODD deaths not coming from firefighting activities or duties. Let me share another nugget. Over half of the LODD heart attacks had at least one previous cardiac event - yet the employer or the VFD allowed the person to continue to function as a firefighter.

    Two gee-whizzes: Career administrative company officer fails annual physical and is recommended to see a cardiologist. The medical report is found in his desk after he drops dead while operating as a sector officer at a greater alarm fire . . . weeks after he hides the results of his physical from his chief.

    70+ year old fire-police member dies while directing traffic at a fire scene. The AED that zapped him back to life at an earlier fire was unsuccessful during the second cardiac arrest.
    Last edited by MikeWard; 07-12-2004 at 04:42 PM.

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    Default

    Guys, not that this isn't great discussion, but why not move these thoughts to the other thread. I suck at multi tasking...

    Everything said here applies at the other thread.......

    Dave

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    WHERE IN THE HECK ARE THE REST OF YOU????

    While I have been keeping up with the thread, I have remained the quiet observer because I am not a firefighter. Studying for my degree in Fire Science only gives me the textbook knowledge it does not equate me with all of you who have many years of "crust". So the student will observe and keep her thoughts to herself. I can only address the critical issues that I see being discussed and that I find in my research in my papers. So please keep discussing. Now, back to the other thread.

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    hfd66truck....

    Feel free to copy and paste my posts over there.

    While it is wonderful to sit around and discuss marvelous theoretical ways to be safe it is quite another topic to get them to occur.

    Example in point. My FD's brush truck was dangerous to operate. We have made the case for at least 5 years to get it replaced. Each year there is no money for the new brush truck. I made the case for it being dangerous apparently too well this year because they ordered it removed from service. I thought cool now they will give us some money to replace it. Not a chance in hell, they said I could rearrange my budget anyway I needed to to purchase the brush truck. So other things get pushed back in order to have a brush truck. Yet in that same 5 years period the village purchased a brand new Ford F-550 dump truck with a plow to the tune of $58,000, they purchased a new riding lawn mower for $5000, they purchased a used service body pick up truck for the DPW for $9600, they purchased a new squad car for $23,000. You know what the FD got? We got a serious attempt by 2 board members to cut our budget because we received a $81,000 FIRE Act Grant. Why? Because in order to have matching funds to pay our share we held onto a good chunk of our budget until the end of the grant period. The Village has received numerous grants for roads, buildings and even landscaping yet there is no effort by those same board members to cut their budget.

    We do what we can within our limitations and I am damn proud of my firefighters. They train, do maintenance, fund raise (in fact we raised the matching funds for our FIRE Act Grant application for this year), do public education and public service, and even find the time to respond to emergency calls. Our changes come from within and many of the ideas come from the company officers and the firefighters. I realized along time ago they are my major resource and I make sure they know that all the time. I may be the fire chief but they are the fire department.

    Money and apathy are the two biggest external problems of the fire service. Bad work habits and apathy are the two biggest internal problems of the fire service. I work to try and improve this from both sides of the equation.

    FyredUp

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    Default You want answers?

    You cant handle the truth.

    Ok, short and sweet. We will continue to have
    LODDS for the following reasons-

    -The mindset- Firefighters dont like change.
    They/we will continue to use the phrases like
    "But I've always done it that way."
    "If it aint broke, dont fix it1" and the
    dreaded- "But its tradition!"

    Until you remove those mindsets, we will
    continue to see LODDS.

    Please dont blow me up, that is just the down
    and dirty.

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    Bou,

    Blow you up, nah. Boil in oil, maybe.

    I will agree that if you do something thats unsafe, in the name of tradition, thats a bad attitude. Just as doing something to change, just for the sake of change that is also unsafe, is also a bad attitude.

    Tradition doesn't make this just unsafe...

    Change doesn't make this job unsafe.....

    We make this job unsafe from our attitudes and behavior.

    Dave

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    Originally posted by hfd66truck


    We make this job unsafe from our attitudes and behavior.

    Dave

    And that is the crux of the matter.
    If you don't do it RIGHT today, when will you have time to do it over? (Hall of Fame basketball player/coach John Wooden)

    "I may be slow, but my work is poor." Chief Dave Balding, MVFD

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    Get it up. Get it on. Get it done!

    impossible solved cotidie. miracles postulo viginti - quattuor hora animadverto

    IACOJ member: Cheers, Play safe y'all.

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    Talking

    CellBlock. I feel sorry for you, you seem to have some real morons in charge of your Dept:

    . Did I mention that our FD has never used the pond outside of training and we have SOG against drafting because of a past incident of pumps being damaged by debris sucked in during drafting or pond use. Even when responding to a tug boat fire along the Mississippi River we still shuttled water and nursed tankers instead of setting up the pond or suctioning directly from the river.

    Has nobody in your dept heard of suction and/or Basket strainers.

    I feel for you brother.

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