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    Angry Los Angeles--Recruits Drunk at Graduation

    The attached story is from the Los Angeles Times. I never cease to be amazed at the stupidity of people. To go through all that effort to get through your training, and then to throw it away, it is so stupid.

    3 Firefighter Recruits Quit, 4 Suspended
    After four months of training, they either did not show up on time or sober for graduation ceremony as required by department policy.

    By Patrick McGreevy, Times Staff Writer

    Three Los Angeles firefighter recruits have resigned and four others have been suspended after a wild party the night before their graduation from the Fire Academy left some of them intoxicated, city officials said Monday.

    The recruits had just undergone four months of training at a cost to taxpayers of $100,000 each when they showed up for a graduation ceremony Oct. 22 and were told that they faced an investigation to determine whether they were fit for duty, said Fire Capt. Rex Vilaubi.

    Three of the recruits showed up two hours late with the smell of alcohol on their breath and were given urine tests that turned up positive for alcohol consumption beyond the legal limit, Los Angeles Fire Department officials informed the Fire Commission.

    Within the last two weeks, those three recruits resigned in lieu of disciplinary action that could have included being fired if they had been found unfit for duty. The other four recruits were given two-week suspensions after they showed up late.

    "There were seven recruits involved in a non-department-sponsored incident, which is still under investigation," Vilaubi said. When asked if alcohol intoxication was involved, he said, "We understand that was the kind of incident."

    Officials said the investigation is continuing to gather facts on what the recruits might have done before the graduation ceremony.

    Vilaubi declined to identify the firefighters, citing confidentiality requirements of personnel investigations, but he said the recruits were part of a class of about 60 firefighters in the last of three classes to graduate this year.

    Fire Commission President Jay Grodin said he backed Fire Chief William Bamattre's disciplinary decisions.

    "If someone does something like that, they shouldn't be a firefighter," Grodin said. "That's not good judgment."

    Grodin, who attended the graduation ceremony, said the recruits were reminded of department policy requiring them to show up on time and sober.

    He was frustrated about the lost investment of taxpayer money.

    "I'm disappointed by it," Grodin said. "You spend all of this money and they go through the training and pass it, and then they blow it."

    Officials with the United Firefighters of Los Angeles union did not return calls about whether they would file appeals on behalf of the disciplined recruits, but Grodin said all recruits are on probation for one year so they are subject to discipline at the will of the department.

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    Default Re: Los Angeles--Recruits Drunk at Graduation

    Originally posted by RalphSafety
    Grodin, who attended the graduation ceremony, said the recruits were reminded of department policy requiring them to show up on time and sober.
    They actually have a policy requiring this? so they have had similar problems in the past, maybe it's a culture thing that needs to be addressed?

    I do think that this is unfair though. they did it off duty. it was the night before. most were probably even hung over from all the partying, and after an LAFD training period of several weeks, which I would imagine is as hard as FDNY, Boston FD, Chicago FD, or any other major urban FD training program, they want to celebrate their last class, as well as finally unwind.

    poor judgement? maybe a little. is it worth it to throw away all that money invested by the city because of one night of off duty drinking to celebrate finishing your training? that might be a little execessive.
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

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    they did it off duty
    with the smell of alcohol on their breath and were given urine tests that turned up positive for alcohol
    they showed up "for duty" still under the influence and late. Bye Bye. And yes, I do consider their graduation as being on duty.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    Originally posted by Bones42


    they showed up "for duty" still under the influence and late. Bye Bye. And yes, I do consider their graduation as being on duty.
    Ditto.

    If they wanted to drink off duty; fine. Just don't come on duty hung over or still drunk. If they started a shift like that, that would be reckless added to being irrisponsible. Being late is bad enough.

    Three of the recruits showed up two hours late

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    TWITS

    See you later boys and girls. Personally, I'd send the guys that quit a bill for the cost of training, but that is me.

    I have no tolerance for your bad judgement that affects the image of a department, and your performance on the job. Graduation apprently was a requirement and therfore that is your appointed place of duty, ergo you should show up as if you were going to be on the truck.

    Have a nice day. Sad thing is I'll bet that these guys will be able to ensure that they have completed the certification process for being a firefighter and get a job elsewhere too.
    "Too many people spend money they haven't earned, to buy things they don't want, to impress people they don't like." Will Rogers

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    Default

    Bingo Bones.
    IACOJ Canine Officer
    20/50

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    Default Ugh...

    This is pretty ermbarrassing coming from my state. Plus
    Firehouse magazine has given the LA areas front page billing
    in their last 3 covers. (Thanks by the way!) Now we/they go
    and pull this. I am very sorry brothers.

    I have to say this was so lame. But, the upside is that
    those are 3-7 employees that the LAFD simply dont need.
    Weeded them out early. YES, I think the former employees
    (dont call them Firefighters) should pay back the training
    cost to the city.

    Me- I dont drink much just to avoid these problems. Why
    give people good ammo to use on you. Drinking should be
    done in moderation and enjoyed, not make an *** out of
    you, your family or agency.

    This is just sick and we (the entiure fire service) sure
    didnt need this. Looks like we are still flushing down our
    new image after 9/11.
    Last edited by CALFFBOU; 11-11-2004 at 02:12 PM.

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    Default Re: Re: Los Angeles--Recruits Drunk at Graduation

    Originally posted by DrParasite

    They actually have a policy requiring this? so they have had similar problems in the past, maybe it's a culture thing that needs to be addressed?

    and after an LAFD training period of several weeks, which I would imagine is as hard as FDNY, Boston FD, Chicago FD, or any other major urban FD training program, they want to celebrate their last class, as well as finally unwind.

    poor judgement? maybe a little. is it worth it to throw away all that money invested by the city because of one night of off duty drinking to celebrate finishing your training? that might be a little execessive.
    Yes, they have a policy against consuming alcohol on-duty
    which includes academy functions. Not a policy just for the
    academy.

    Yes, the LAFD tower is one of the most difficult in the country,
    possibly in the world. The LAFD is a very para-military,
    established and progressive fire agency.

    Yes, poor judgement. No, not excessive at all. If they can do
    this at a graduation, whats next? (Give them an inch, they
    take a mile)

    -Bou
    Last edited by CALFFBOU; 11-11-2004 at 02:38 PM.

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    Showed up with alcohol on the breathe at Graduation? Buh-bye.
    No questions even asked around here.
    Dumb and dumberer.
    "Don't just do something, stand there!!!"

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    Hey Bou,

    It wasn't you or any one from your department. It was, a member of the fire service. It affects all of us, from the right coast to the left coast, north to south and from all over the world. As Firefighters, it is a Brother and Sisterhood. We all suffer from what some lame dim wit does off duty.




    Last edited by CaptOldTimer; 11-12-2004 at 10:24 AM.
    Stay Safe and Well Out There....

    Always remembering 9-11-2001 and 343+ Brothers

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    Default Yo...

    Capt Old Timer- I hear ya bro. This is so embarassing.
    Atleast the clowns are now out.

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    How can you be so stupid???????? It's a good thing they got it now, instead of it happening on the line and possibly injuring/killing somebody........

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    I do think that this is unfair though. they did it off duty. it was the night before.
    They showed up two hours late for the graduation ceremony. Essentially, they showed up two hours late for their first day of work, if you think about it. What employer do you think would tolerate that?

    Unfair? I don't think so. A shame? Yes. I agree that they were all probably entitled to blow off some steam following a tough academy like that. But they exercised some extremely poor judgement.

    What's a shame about it is, this lapse of reason probably doesn't mean they'd have made bad firefighters. Most of them probably would have gone on to have long, excellent careers with the LAFD. Even if they're lucky enough to get on with another department, they'll have to live with the knowledge of the opportunity that they threw away.
    Chief Dwayne LeBlanc
    Paincourtville Volunteer Fire Department
    Paincourtville, LA

    "I have a dream. It's not a big dream, it's just a little dream. My dream and I hope you don't find this too crazy is that I would like the people of this community to feel that if, God forbid, there were a fire, calling the fire department would actually be a wise thing to do. You can't have people, if their houses are burning down, saying, 'Whatever you do, don't call the fire department!' That would be bad."
    C.D. Bales, "Roxanne"

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    Default Re: Re: Los Angeles--Recruits Drunk at Graduation

    Originally posted by DrParasite
    I do think that this is unfair though. they did it off duty. it was the night before.
    So, your boss allows you to show up for work late with a blood-alcohol level above the legal limit? Because that's what happened here. They are being punished for partying. They aren't being punished for drinking. They are being punished for being irresponsible and allowing the drinking & partying to affect their job performance.

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    ok, I must have missed that part about them showing up 2 hours late. So fire them and get on with life
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

    FF/EMT/DBP

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    Default Better to find out now

    While it's a shame the dept. lost the money on the training,
    it's better they find out this now before the same thing
    happens when public safety would have been directly affected.

    If they screwed up, they should have fessed up before reporting.
    While there would mostly likely be disciplinary action, they
    might not have terminated their careers.

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    Yes, I have made mistakes, your sarcasm is noted.

    However, they resigned correct? They would have faced punishment regardless, but instead of accepting responsibility for their childish and irresponsible actions, they chose to run from them.

    This creates a different scenario than what you stated, does it not?
    "Too many people spend money they haven't earned, to buy things they don't want, to impress people they don't like." Will Rogers

    The borrower is slave to the lender. Proverbs 22:7 - Debt free since 10/5/2009.

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    www.daveramsey.com www.clarkhoward.com www.heritage.org

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    Default What Idiots

    As hard as it is to be hired by a major city department and these nit-wits just throw it all out the window.....

    I'll agree a party before graduation is acceptable if not warranted in most cases....kick back have a few beers and dream out loud with your fellow recruits about the endless possibilities that a job like this has. - Than go home make sure your uniform is pressed, Go to bed, Toss and Turn with Butterflies, check the Clock every 15 minutes and finally show up for your first actual duty assignment with your head screwed on straight.

    But to show up two hours late for your graduation still under the influance or getting caught at the graduation still E.T.O.H. {Extremley Trashed or Hammered} is a violation of our duty as firefighters. - These guys fiqured they had the easy life and who will know ???? - Well they knew and I'm glad they did.....See ya Probies

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    That kind of stupid things deserves a firing! Especially being a new recruit, the time when you kiss butt and stay at your sharpest. These knotheads showed up like that for their graduation drunk and smeeling like a brew house, they deserved to get canned!
    Jason S. - SFFD
    Local 798

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    To bad so sad, I guess they should have waited till after they graduated to celebrate and then done it on a night they did not have to get up for work the next day. Your fired! of course they quit this way it will not look so bad on the application for the next job.
    Bye Bye
    GFIRE

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    LA City or County?
    EMT/FF

    FOOPS

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    Exclamation More info...

    It was LA CITY.

    Here is a more information from one of the recruits that was
    involved.

    http://www.firecareers.com/viewmessa...=11&Topic=4879
    Last edited by CALFFBOU; 01-08-2005 at 03:10 PM.

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    now in my opinion , i think that if i was a city tax payer i would be ****ed at the department for aking them to quit losing hundreds of thousands of dollars because some recruits were tardy for a graduation ceromony is assinine to say the least !! and for all those people about to just lynch them put yourself in there place , yeah i wouldnt have been late ar gotten to drunk the night before but they are human and how many of us have never celebrated something that makes you proud exspecialy after a 17 week academy !!


    (this post was not intended to offend anyone its just my opinion)

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    Four months of training!!!! why not giving these guys a break and let them ALL go out together and celebrate not the night before but two nights previous graduation date!!!. FOR SURE they were VERY irresponsible! I'm not sure if they should be "canned" like they said before UNLESS they were driving or on duty for emergency calls. One thing is for sure they have disrespected what a firefighter stands for by showing up on an intoxicated manner to a priceless ceremony and YES is good that they were punished. Futhermore lets understand what 4 months of non-stop training are, the academy they came from should also understand their state of mind and give their recruits time to go out and all the way out a couple of nights before their last academy duty.

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    and just think, if they had the party AFTER graduation, this story would never have happened.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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