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    Arrow NYC Firefighters Condemn FDNY Leadership

    For Immediate Release: December 7, 2004

    NYC Firefighters Condemn FDNY Leadership

    More than 350 New York City Firefighters joined with Uniformed Firefighters Association President Steve Cassidy and the UFA Executive Board in midtown-Manhattan to announce a vote of No Confidence in Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta.

    The UFA represents 8,800 active New York City Firefighters and a combined total of more than 20,000 active and retired city firefighters. It is the largest firefighters union local in the world.

    Citing more than a dozen reasons and instances when the Commissioner failed to act in the best interest of the FDNY and the citizens that the department is sworn to protect, firefighters overwhelmingly approved a motion of No Confidence calling upon the Commissioner to resign. The UFA Executive Board also voted unanimously on a vote of No Confidence in Commissioner Scoppetta.

    According to UFA President Steve Cassidy, “Since at least June of this year we have been highly concerned about the lack of leadership in the FDNY and have expressed that concern. Commissioner Scoppetta has done nothing to ensure continued leadership in the Fire Department since taking its helm, but among his worst acts have been his continuing rejection of the wisdom of past FDNY chiefs and sending fire companies out undermanned just to bolster his response time data.”

    In a detailed report on FDNY staffing reductions in 1981, FDNY’s then Chief of Department John Hart wrote, “In my judgment and in the considered judgment of my staff, all of whom have more than 25 years experience in firefighting, 4 firefighters on duty with an engine company is an absolute minimum and does not represent an adequate manned company.”

    The vote taken today by the UFA’s delegates represent every engine company, every ladder company, every specialty unit and every fire house in the City of New York.

    ---> AMONG REASONS WHY 8,800 NYC FIREFIGHTERS HAVE NO CONFIDENCE IN THE FDNY COMMISSIONER


    1. The Commissioner refused to support pension reform legislation that would have enabled more than 3,000 of the most experienced firefighters & fire officers to say and help the FDNY’s transition and rebuilding post-9/11. This has resulted in the FDNY going from the most experienced fire department in the world to one with almost 1/3 of its ranks new, inexperienced and still learning the job since 9/11.

    2. Commissioner Scoppetta failed to support the UFA program of corporate sponsorship to keep firehouses open throughout the city at no cost to the FDNY and advocated for the closure of firehouses. He further has a policy of closing up to 20 fire companies per day without informing the public, which compromises public safety.

    3. The Commissioner advocated and gave away the FDNY’s lead role at HazMat situations. The FDNY is now the only fire department in the United States not to be in charge at HazMat emergencies.
    Punished firefighters who suffered injuries in the line of duty while fighting fires and while working at the World Trade Center with threat of transfer, sending a message that bravery and putting your life on the line for citizens may get you punished and transferred.

    4. Nick Scoppetta’s fire department is not driven by public safety or firefighter safety but the mirage of response times. This is deliberately misleading the public about emergency response times as the department continues to say one unit in front of a building is an adequate response. Now the department says that one unit with only 2 firefighters is an adequate response.

    5. The commissioner persecuted a chauffer involved in a fatal collision and then said firefighters no longer had to stop at red lights and stop signs, so not to hurt his response time statistics.
    In the wake of 9/11 when experts predicted the need for additional counseling in the FDNY, the Commissioner’s response was instead to pursue a zero tolerance policy driving those with problems underground.

    6. The fire commissioner completely disregarded results of the most extensive study of firefighter stress and trauma in the history of the United States -- conducted by Cornell University’s School of Industrial & Labor Relations -- which suggested how to improve these problems in the fire department.

    7. Commissioner Scoppetta has sought to prosecute firefighters instead of leading them and under his tenure the department has gone from the greatest and proudest fire department in the world to one that is leaderless post-9/11.

    8. Ruling as a reactionary, the commissioner has provided no guidance or leadership, taking action ONLY when the news media has picked up on an issue or turned it into a story, whether merited or not.

    9. Under Commissioner Scoppetta there has been an increase in substandard health and safety conditions in significant numbers of firehouses throughout the city.

    10. Despite being a prosecutor, the Commissioner has done nothing to investigate or correct the FDNY’s secretive no-bid vendor contracts process.

    11. The cumulative effect of his actions and lack of leadership has resulted in the lowest morale in the history of the FDNY.
    On top of all of these, most recently the Commissioner advocated for 20% reduction in Engine Company manning (from 5 down to 4) against advice of top commanders, compromising civilian and firefighter safety. He then took this dangerous policy to a new level when he ordered that fire companies with as few as two firefighters should respond to structural fires.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    New York City Firefighter Fatalities
    1981-2000 * All Ranks

    Year Burns & Smoke Etc. Cardiac, Falls Etc.
    1981-------0----------------1
    1982-------0----------------4
    1983-------0----------------1
    1984-------1----------------1
    1985-------1----------------0
    1986-------0----------------1
    1987-------0----------------3
    1988-------0----------------0
    1989-------1----------------0
    1990-------0----------------0
    Totals:----3---------------11

    Manning Reduction

    Year Burns & Smoke Etc. Cardiac, Falls Etc.
    1991 -------2----------------0
    1992 -------1----------------0
    1993 -------0----------------1
    1994 -------5----------------0
    1995 -------3----------------1
    1996 -------2----------------0
    1997 -------0----------------0
    1998 -------5----------------1
    1999 -------1----------------0
    2000 -------0----------------1
    Totals:--19---------------4


    * Astoria-Father’s Day Fire and World Trade Center was excluded because 2001 data was not part of the survey



    FTM-PTB
    Last edited by FFFRED; 12-07-2004 at 07:04 PM.

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    The Chief Leader
    Week of December 10, 2004

    Sick-Leave Related
    FDNY Cuts Staffing In 49 Engine Cos.
    By MARK DALY

    In response to unusually high sick leave, the Fire Department Dec. 2 cut staffing at 25 percent of the city's engine companies and also ordered units to respond to building fires even when they are shorthanded.

    Uniformed Firefighters' Association President Stephen J. Cassidy blasted Fire Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta for the staffing cuts, which brought nearly all the city's engine compan?ies down from five Firefight?ers to four.

    'Compromises Safety'

    The UFA leader also condemned the new directive, which clears the way for engines and ladder trucks to respond to structural fires with just two Firefighters and an officer in an emergency.

    "It's outrageous. It compromises public safety and firefighter safety," Mr. Cassidy said. "This is going to get a firefighter killed."

    The staffing cuts, allowed under the UFA's contract, will lower overtime costs, FDNY officials said, while the new directive will ensure that fire units arrive on the scene as quickly as possible.

    Frank Gribbon, the FDNYs chief spokesman, explained that shorthanded crews won't be required to enter a burning building. Instead, a three-member unit will tell dispatchers beforehand that it is operating with reduced staffing, and will set up "in a defensive position" if it is the first to arrive at a fire.

    "They can set up a ladder or hook up to a hydrant or confirm that an actual fire exists and feed that information to dispatchers or arriving crews,” Mr. Gribbon said.

    The spokesman, added, however, that if the crew's officer believes there are lives at risk inside the building, "they can take whatever actions they deem necessary "

    The new rule exploits firefighters' can-do attitude toward their job and will lead them to take unnecessary risks, complained Mr. Cassidy.

    "There's not one New York City firefighter that's going to stand outside of a working fire," he said. "They're going to go in and do what they can, and jeopardize them?selves, and the department knows that and doesn't care."

    Mr. Cassidy said the department should continue its past practice and send a Firefighter over from a five? Firefighter unit, or close an understaffed company for a shift and bring other units in to cover the area, to ensure that responding units are fully staffed. Above all, "don't send firefighters piecemeal to a fire where they will put themselves in danger," he said.

    Most Already at 4

    Two-thirds of the city's en?gine companies already oper?ate with four Firefighters plus one officer. The latest round of cuts will bring the number of five-Firefighter companies down from 60 to just 11 citywide.

    FDNY officials said the cuts will spread the force more evenly and allow the city to avoid the cost of bringing in replacements on over?time to fill in for personnel who have been sidelined by injuries or illness. The cuts will also sharply limit the number of "fifth men" avail?able to transfer into short?handed units, making the new directive necessary, Mr. Gribbon said.

    Mr. Scoppetta ordered the cut from five Firefighters to four at 49 of the city's 197 engine companies in reaction to a rise in medical leave use in the ranks. The UFA's contract allows the FDNY to reduce the number of five ?member crews whenever medical leave use among the city's 8,500 Firefighters climbs above 7.5 percent.

    Mr. Cassidy said firefighter deaths from burns and smoke inhalation have increased since the FDNY began cutting the size of crews from five Firefighters to four in 1991.

    The deaths soared from three in the decade before the change to 19 between 1991 and 2000, according to the UFOA. During the same period, deaths from heart attacks and falls dropped from 11 in 1981-1990 to three in 1991-2000.

    Waited for Driver

    Mr. Gribbon said the new directive for shorthanded crews was partially inspired by a 2000 incident in which a three-member Queens fire crew remained out of service while a fire raged in its re?sponse area, causing one death.

    According to news ac?counts of the incident, the crew was awaiting the arriv?al of a new driver, or chauf?feur, to replace a driver who had gone out sick during his shift. Another on-duty Firefighter had been trained by the firehouse as an engine chauffeur, but the crew requested a department-certified operator to bring it up to its standard staffing.

    The UFA and the Uniformed Fire Officers Association have long objected to the practice of "certifying" new chauffeurs based on trial runs from the firehouse. The unions say that Firefighters need comprehensive training from the department's driv?ing school to be properly qualified as chauffeurs.

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    Good luck in the fight, brothers.......

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    While I have no knowledge of the commisioner, I would like to give several facts about this situation:

    1) many career fire departments operate with 4 man engine and 4 man truck companies. These are ISO level 1 departments, in major metropolitan areas that operate like this on a daily basis. while 5 is better than 4, 6 is even better than 5. using this logic FDNY should have been saying that 5 guys on the engine wasn't enough, and that they should have 6.
    The new rule exploits firefighters' can-do attitude toward their job and will lead them to take unnecessary risks, complained Mr. Cassidy.

    "There's not one New York City firefighter that's going to stand outside of a working fire," he said. "They're going to go in and do what they can, and jeopardize them?selves, and the department knows that and doesn't care."
    2) then the NYC firefighter is wrong. If they believe it is unsafe, then they shouldn't be going inside, and should follow the department protocol. if they don't, then it's a shame on them.

    I also know that no firefighter would just stand outside when a building is on fire, but when it comes to firefighter life safety vs saving a non-living building, then my firefighter's lives come first.

    3) we are seeing way too many LOD injuries on the fire scene from smoke inhalation. we have SCBAs. we should be using them if we are put into a smokey enviorment.

    The FDNY is now the only fire department in the United States not to be in charge at HazMat emergencies.
    4) This is not true. There are many departments that turn HazMat Incidents over to HazMat Teams, and then the FD supports their actions. so FDNY isn't the only department not in charge of them. and IIRC, it was the mayors decision, not the commish who said this

    that all being said, I wish the FDNY guys good luck with thier problems with their commisioner, and hope everyone stays safe and goes home at the end of the day
    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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    If they believe it is unsafe, then they shouldn't be going inside, and should follow the department protocol. if they don't, then it's a shame on them.
    This is a joke right? Firefighters should not go inside of a building that is unsafe....Could you point me to the safe burning building please?

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    I understand what DrParasite is saying here. Yes, firefighting is an inherently dangerous activity that puts us into numerous unsafe situations. But, we are trained to distinguish between "extremely unsafe" situations and "moderately unsafe" situations.

    As for company staffing, I think that a 4 man engine company can work as good or better than a 5- or 6-man engine. I really don't see a need for an extra man or two as the guys in back are going to be the only ones going in to do attack and search & rescue. Hell, I've been on a 2- and 3- man engine company before, and we did what had to be done with no problems. Truck staffing is a matter of preference, I guess. My department dosn't run a truck, but a neighboring one does. They usually have one or two guys on it. Trucks here don't really do much more than provide a ladder for high-rises, ventilation is taken care of by an engine crew, as is search and rescue.

    Anyways...good luck up there. I hope all this is resolved soon.

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    You can NOT compare the majority of areas covered by FDNY units. I would love to see one of your companies make a stretch up six floors of tenament to a top floor fire and then advance the line down the hall to the fire and through the apartment with 2FF and an officer, good luck.
    Good luck operating at this same type of fire with a 3 man truck company. Your looking for nothing but LODDs and civilian fatalities.

    By the city taking firefighters away they are in turn taking the aggressiveness away from the Dept. OH wait I guess they should stand outsside the burning building that is tenable for interior attack. Yeah RIGHT!!! That would **** most guys off to no end. It would **** me off!

    This whole article makes me sick. Putting firefighters in the postion of watching things burn because the city refuses to alocate the resources. I'm sorry I just don't understand how Dr. Parasite and Engine76 can say that IMHO

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    Wow, I strongly disagree with the posts from DrParasite and Engine76.

    It would be ridiculous for me to sit back and pass judgement on how FDNY staffs their apparatus, and on what they need to get the job done. I think that the men and women of FDNY know what they need--and it's completely wrong that they are not getting the support they need from their leadership and city in this matter. Funny how several years ago, supporting the FDNY was popular and noble. What happened?

    Oh, right. It's weird how things can fade from memory so fast...

    I think what is amazing and admirable is that day in, day out, they give it their all and get the job done regardless. I can't even begin to imagine what it would be like running shorthanded in New York City. How can that be anything but a recipe for endangering lives--of both civilians and firefighters?
    Last edited by Resq14; 12-07-2004 at 11:41 PM.
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    Question

    Which one of your ISO level 1 Metropolitan area Fire Depts protects an area that even begins to resemble this with all 3 or 4 man Engines and Trucks?

    PS---This Picture only really encompasses part of the 1st Division from 34th Street South.

    FTM-PTB
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    Originally posted by E229Lt


    This is a joke right? Firefighters should not go inside of a building that is unsafe....Could you point me to the safe burning building please?
    Lt, he's your boss, not mine. and everyone here has said that no building is worth the life of a firefighter.

    OH wait I guess they should stand outsside the burning building that is tenable for interior attack. Yeah RIGHT!!! That would **** most guys off to no end. It would **** me off!
    as it should. and it would **** me off too. but it's how the administration of your department has chosen to operate. don't get ****ed at me because of how your bosses want you to operate.

    I've said it before, and I'll say it again. We (the fire service) are really good at using what little we have to get the job done. if the engine pulls up with only 3 guys (driver, officer, and FF), they will still try to make an interior attack, and put the fire out.

    they cut staffing, we still go inside and put the fire out. the cut our budget, we still put the fire out. your riding around in an open cab pumper from the 70s, which is more a death trap than an actual fire engine, but you use it, and when there is a fire, at the end of the day, it goes out. It's what we do, we make the best of a bad situation, and we find some way to get the job done.


    if we want this to stop, we need to stop doing what we are so good at. if you pull up, and you don't have enough guys to make a safe interior attack, then stay outside until adequate resources arrive. tell your citizens "it's department policy that if we don't have enough people to make a safe entry, then we have to stay defensive, unless we know there is a report of a potential loss of life inside." and after you lose a couple of buildings that you should have been able to save, the public will be out for blood. the guys on the front lines are following the orders from up above. the administration placed you in that position. it goes against everything we firefighters are. and it sucks, bigtime. but unless we do something, the trend is going to continue.

    but I'm probably wrong, and in a couple of years, all the paid departments are going to have 6 guys on their engines and trucks, and you won't be able to find an empty seat

    oh, and fred, Syracuse NY (one of the few big cities in upstate NY) operates with 4 on the engine and 4 on the truck, and I think (but I'm not sure) that either LA City or LA County also operates either 4 and 4 or 4 and 5. now, I'll agree that they don't come close to midtown manhattan, but how many of those highrises will you find on staten island? or queens? I think manhattan engines should have 5 guys, but NYC isn't just midtown manhattan.
    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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    Originally posted by DrParasite
    "it's department policy that if we don't have enough people to make a safe entry, then we have to stay defensive, unless we know there is a report of a potential loss of life inside." and after you lose a couple of buildings that you should have been able to save, the public will be out for blood.
    ?????????????????????????????

    Screw the buildings.

    What happens when a LIFE is lost because of the staffing problems?
    ...when FF's are injured or killed trying to rescue people?
    ...when people die because FF's didn't have enough personnel available to fill the roles at a scene?

    Your "teach them a lesson" logic seems rather dangerous to me when the outcome might be measured in bodies.

    (Then again, I don't drive an ambulance in NY so I'm probably not qualified to have an opinion on the matter)
    Last edited by Resq14; 12-08-2004 at 01:02 AM.
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    oh, and fred, Syracuse NY (one of the few big cities in upstate NY) operates with 4 on the engine and 4 on the truck, and I think (but I'm not sure) that either LA City or LA County also operates either 4 and 4 or 4 and 5. now, I'll agree that they don't come close to midtown manhattan, but how many of those highrises will you find on staten island? or queens? I think manhattan engines should have 5 guys, but NYC isn't just midtown manhattan].
    I didn't think by posting these press releases on this web site I would get a response from Mayor Bloombergs fan club! But I guess I shouldn't have been surprised.

    1) many career fire departments operate with 4 man engine and 4 man truck companies. These are ISO level 1 departments, in major metropolitan areas that operate like this on a daily basis. while 5 is better than 4, 6 is even better than 5. using this logic FDNY should have been saying that 5 guys on the engine wasn't enough, and that they should have 6.
    First let me state (no offense to the brothers in those other cities) that NONE of those ISO Class whatever "major metropoltian cities Fire Depts" works in NYC. I've been to many major cities outside of the NYC area and most feel like the suburbs when comparing density.

    NONE of them have the density of 6, 7 or even the odd-ball 8 or 9 story walk-up Multiple dwellings that DON'T have standpipes. And comprise entire city blocks and neighborhoods. You won’t find that in Syracuse, LA City or County.

    Also just because a certain Engine in Queens has predominantly Warehouses and Rowframes doesn't mean it won't be relocated to Midtown Manhattan or Harlem as often happens. All companies have to be able to operate in any building in any neighborhood in the city. Just because I might have more high-rises than an area of lets say Bushwick doesn't mean the few that they have there won't catch fire either. That is why NFPA 1710 notes that in high density areas should have 5 or 6 men on a company.

    Just because those other cities choose to operate with that level doesn't concern me. That is their choice to operate with deficient staffing.

    I would imagine if you lived on the 5th floor of an OLT in Williamsburg or the 6th Floor of NLT in the Tremont section of the Bronx you probably wouldn't be so quick to note how many 4-Man ISO Engines they have in the LAFD!

    Second that wasn't the "logic" the Union is using. That was the "logic" that ignorant people use including those in city hall. Unlike most places in the country we have a system of positions and duties for all members to successfully extinguish a fire. In the Engine they are Nozzle, Back-Up, Door man, Control Man, & Chauffeur. The "Door man" is the one the mayor and commissioner are trying to get rid of.

    Perhaps unbeknownst to many of you is that there are reams of documents, studies and statements from chiefs over the years that support our need for 5 men on an Engine for properly stretching a handline.

    Engine 76 I don't know where you work but we have actual studies conducted at the FDNY Fire Academy that show a 5 man Engine to be far superior to 4 man Engines in getting lines into service.

    E76 I'd also really love to see how your 3 or 4 man engine can be as efficient and effective at stretching 8-11 lengths of hose down the street, up a stairway or fire escape AND then operate and advance that line, as my Engine Co. does.

    Roughly the studies (conducted by Chief Vincent Dunn no less) found that a 5 man Engine took about 5 minutes to stretch a hoseline to the 5th Floor of a MD. They also found that a 4-man company could do the same in about 10 minutes! A 100% difference in efficiency! They also looked at 3 men and 6 men and found the largest increase in efficiency came at 5 men. We aren't just arguing for more guys, just because. We are arguing for the right amount of guys so a single Engine can get a line into operation. As it is now we often have to team up TWO Engines just to get ONE line into operation. Just because they didn't put one man on the Engine. That is really an inefficient use of resources.

    The 5th Man or Door man is the guy who humps the hose around corners and up stairways. This is critical to ensure a quick and efficient stretch. This allows the nozzle team of the Nozzle and Back-up a smooth and unimpeded advance into and on the fire area. This is what enables us to save buildings by getting ahead of the fire. This is why we don't burn down buildings daily. We save most. Hell most of the buildings in my area were built between 1860 and 1930. I would wager all have had a number of fires in them over the 100+ years. And most are standing because of the brothers, not good luck and 4 man (or 3 or 2 man) Engines.

    Now also many citizens are unaware that when during the course of a tour that the members go to a fire and are injured, we don't hire more guys for OT to fill their spots. They must wait until the change of tours to bring the manning back up. They use the 5th men to fill in for those members who are injured during the course of the tour.

    Now with only 11 guys on Engines City wide to yank that means that if other companies are short...that means the OVM from the Truck will be sent to even out the staffing in another company.

    Now for a futher explanation of what the Outside Vent Man does...well roughly he places himself opposite the fire and does two critical things.

    1. He vents opposite the fire usually from a fire escape or Bucket of a Tower Ladder. This is so guys like me in the Engine aren't burned as we make a push into the fire apartment.

    2. He conducts VES behind the fire to areas where victims usually are trapped by the fire. Many of the FDNYs successful rescues are performed by this critical and often senior Truck member. Read the Medal Day (Truckie appreciation day) book. Look to see what members were working and how they executed their rescues.

    This means that the 1st Due Truck won't have an OVM, the 2nd Due Roof man becomes the 1st Due OVM and the 1st Due Roof no longer has anyone to back them up...it has a domino effect on operations.

    4) This is not true. There are many departments that turn HazMat Incidents over to HazMat Teams, and then the FD supports their actions. so FDNY isn't the only department not in charge of them. and IIRC, it was the mayors decision, not the commish who said this
    This was a statement made into a better sound bite for the media. In Truth we are talking about the largest major cities in this country. We aren't talking about "many depts", we aren't talking about Billy bobs volly Hose Co. No.3 in Upper Strawbottom, Nowhere. We are talking about a survey the UFA took after the Citywide Incident command protocol debacle. NYC is the ONLY Major City FD who isn't in charge of Haz-Mat incidents despite being more qualified than those placed in charge now. (No offense to the brothers in Blue)

    In the end we will make due as always but we are dangerously teetering on the edge of getting brothers and civilians killed! That isn't a exaggeration or a misstatement of the facts. That is a truth that will probably only be corrected by the unnecessary loss of lives on both sides.

    FTM-PTB
    Last edited by FFFRED; 12-08-2004 at 01:46 AM.

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    Originally posted by FFFRED
    In the end we will make due as always but we are dangerously teetering on the edge of getting brothers and civilians killed! That isn't a exaggeration or a misstatement of the facts. That is a truth that will probably only be corrected by the unnecessary loss of lives on both sides.

    FTM-PTB
    and sadly, I don't forsee anything changing until you end up going over that edge....I know, it sucks

    and I'm not the mayor's fan club, I'm just trying to look at this from a non-FDNY firefighter's point of view (which is what I am). This won't change unless you get the public's support behind you. maybe you should be putting more of that information (about the 5th man and such) in the press release so the PUBLIC knows how crucial a role he plays on a fire scene?
    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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    Originally posted by DrParasite
    I'm just trying to look at this from a non-FDNY firefighter's point of view (which is what I am).
    Ditto.

    And I still think your logic is messed up... yet another example of ignoring facts and details when you're challenged.
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    Post NY Times

    December 8, 2004
    Firefighters Lash Out at Commissioner, Angering Bloomberg
    By MICHAEL WILSON

    Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg criticized a union's vote of no confidence in the fire commissioner yesterday, saying the firefighters should "look in the mirror" and stop drinking on the job, using drugs and "turning a firehouse into a brothel."

    The mayor's comments followed a Uniformed Firefighters Association vote of no confidence yesterday in Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta. The union primarily cited policies that it said were intended to decrease firefighters' response time, but also criticized the commissioner's zero-tolerance policy toward illegal drug use, saying in a statement that it was driving "underground" the emotional problems of many firefighters after Sept. 11.

    This year, 45 firefighters have been arrested on charges of driving while intoxicated, the Fire Department said. Those arrests came after a highly publicized, alcohol-fueled brawl at a Staten Island firehouse last Dec. 31 that nearly killed a firefighter who was struck in the head with a chair. Commissioner Scoppetta has promised to crack down on firefighters abusing alcohol or drugs after their first offense, noting that in the past enforcement was lax.

    The mayor's comments at a news conference focused on cases in which firefighters misbehaved, including an instance in August in which a woman said she had sexual encounters with several firefighters in a bunkroom of Engine Company 75 and Ladder Company 33 in University Heights in the Bronx.

    "I think the Fire Department union should probably step back and look in the mirror," Mr. Bloomberg said. "The truth of the matter is Scoppetta is doing exactly what he should do."

    "We will not tolerate turning a firehouse into a brothel," he added. "We're not going to tolerate firefighters drinking when they're on the job. We absolutely will not let anybody who's on drugs drive a fire engine."

    The union president, Steve Cassidy, took offense at those remarks. "The mayor's comments tarnish the sacrifices of all firefighters, active and retired," he said in a statement. "They are untrue and do not reflect the high esteem the public holds for New York's Bravest. Shame on him."

    The union attacked a recent departmental advisory that it says considers the arrival of two firefighters in one truck a response to a fire. "Commissioner Scoppetta has done nothing to ensure continued leadership in the Fire Department since taking its helm, but among his worst acts have been his continuing rejection of the wisdom of past F.D.N.Y. chiefs and sending fire companies out undermanned just to bolster his response time data," Mr. Cassidy said.

    Commissioner Scoppetta said the union was spinning the language of the advisory. "We just say in the unlikely circumstance that you're in the firehouse, you're waiting for two more firefighters to make up a full complement, you get a call, you take the call," he said. "You go to the fire, and you will be assigned some task. You do not go into the fire."

    The union, which has 8,800 members, also criticized last week's reduction in staffing on 49 of the city's 197 engine companies, from five firefighters and an officer to four. The commissioner responded that the union's contract calls for reducing the staffing when the number of firefighters on medical leave rises above 7.5 percent, which it has.


    Mike McIntire contributed reporting for this article.

  16. #16
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    Originally posted by FFFRED


    ....In Truth we are talking about the largest major cities in this country. We aren't talking about "many depts", we aren't talking about Billy bobs volly Hose Co. No.3 in Upper Strawbottom, Nowhere....

    Now that is funny....!!!!

    FFRED...I agree with you 200%....What I don't understand is why "outsiders" of the FDNY try and make light of Mr. Maguee's and Millionare Mike's decisions...???? Just because someone VISTITS NYC does not mean they have ONE ounce of experiance working with in its walls. As a member of the FDNY/EMS myself...I can relate...the city has been butchering EMS for some time now.
    Last edited by VinnieB; 12-08-2004 at 12:18 PM.
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    I'm just trying to look at this from a non-FDNY firefighter's point of view
    And that maybe the reason you should do a little research before you comment.
    Have you fought the type of row house fires FDNY does, regularly?
    Have you fought a major high rise fire, that FDNY deals with regularly?
    Do you have, not just a few blocks of high density, single story manufacturing or wharehouse buildings, but square miles?
    Do you have the absentee landlord tenements that FDNY deals with, regularly?
    Have you done dedicated truck work in any of the above?
    Have you done any engine work in any of the above?
    If not, how can you comment intelligently on any of what FDNY does?
    I can guarentee, Dr. Parasite, your "few years" of being a career guy doesn't make you an expert or even able to speak on the tactical and strategic needs of FDNY.
    My posts reflect my views and opinions, not the organization I work for or my IAFF local. Some of which they may not agree. I.A.C.O.J. member
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    I read a long time ago that 5% - 8% of all the structure fires in the US occur in the five boroughs of NYC. Given the type of structures involved, a work load like that would kill half of my colleagues in OC.


    Including me.
    Politics is like driving. To go forward select "D", to go backward select "R."

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    Originally posted by SPFDRum


    And that maybe the reason you should do a little research before you comment.
    Have you fought the type of row house fires FDNY does, regularly?
    Have you fought a major high rise fire, that FDNY deals with regularly?
    Do you have, not just a few blocks of high density, single story manufacturing or wharehouse buildings, but square miles?
    Do you have the absentee landlord tenements that FDNY deals with, regularly?
    Have you done dedicated truck work in any of the above?
    Have you done any engine work in any of the above?
    If not, how can you comment intelligently on any of what FDNY does?
    I can guarentee, Dr. Parasite, your "few years" of being a career guy doesn't make you an expert or even able to speak on the tactical and strategic needs of FDNY.
    If outside points of view are not wanted, why post this topic on a BB that goes to Firefighters across the globe?
    Be for Peace, but don't be for the Enemy!
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    Learn from the mistakes of others; you won't live long enough to make them all yourself.

    Quote Originally Posted by nyckftbl View Post
    LOL....dont you people have anything else to do besides b*tch about our b*tching?

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    Originally posted by DennisTheMenace
    If outside points of view are not wanted, why post this topic on a BB that goes to Firefighters across the globe?
    The politicians will look at NYC has done with the FDNY and say "if one of the largest fire departments in the country can cut staffing, then why can't we"....

    The problem is... staffing levels in many departments are already cut to the bone...

    That's why!
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
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    Originally posted by CaptainGonzo


    The politicians will look at NYC has done with the FDNY and say "if one of the largest fire departments in the country can cut staffing, then why can't we"....

    The problem is... staffing levels in many departments are already cut to the bone...

    That's why!
    Exactly!!!

    In CA we have an idiot retired police chief running around telling cities how to restructure their departments to save money.

    Among his recommendations are doing away with the 24 hour manning. 2 man patrols, and using a military style employment where an employee is given a four year committment with a $40K severance at the end. Major incidents would be augmented with local auxiliaries. There would be no career in the fire service. Of course he is naive enough to believe that the same could never happen to law enforcement. I emailed him to tell him he is pushing for a city to depend upon a FD that would be the equivalent of mall cops. He didn't respond.

    Like all others, our union guys are in a constant struggle over staffing. Right now they are pushing a ballot initiative to reallocate a sales tax revenue that was designed to augment police and fire budgets but hasn't. In the ten years the county has been collecting, not one penny has gone to fire even though fire images were the primary campaign reason it passed. The issue was passed during the firestorms in 1993.

    Since law enforcement has received all of the revenues, the local sheriff and deputies associations have been quite explicit in their remarks about firefighters and firefighting in general. And it isn't pretty.

    Good luck to the Brothers in the FDNY.
    Politics is like driving. To go forward select "D", to go backward select "R."

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    Originally posted by CaptainGonzo


    The politicians will look at NYC has done with the FDNY and say "if one of the largest fire departments in the country can cut staffing, then why can't we"....

    The problem is... staffing levels in many departments are already cut to the bone...

    That's why!
    So Firefighters should only back the union and not have indepnedent and critical thoughts on actions and proclamations?

    I am fine with argueing the points made, show why the person is wrong or right, but don't say they are not intitled to make an observance.

    As long as people have to pay taxes for services to be provided, their will be a struggle for those tax dollars and a need to justify those dollars spent.

    I see enough people call in sick when they are not to see why the city might be forced to do things that we don't agree with or feel completely safe with to compensate. When you want to call in sick due to a heavy night of partying, remember it is not just the payroll office that you are sticking it to, you are sticking it to the tax payers, the citizens you protect and your fellow fire fighters you are supposed to be on the team with.
    Be for Peace, but don't be for the Enemy!
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    Learn from the mistakes of others; you won't live long enough to make them all yourself.

    Quote Originally Posted by nyckftbl View Post
    LOL....dont you people have anything else to do besides b*tch about our b*tching?

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    Hopefully they put the info on this this BB for support! What kind of brother would condone lower manpower? Not a standup stance to take unless you aspire to be a beancounter or politician yourself.

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    Originally posted by SPFDRum


    And that maybe the reason you should do a little research before you comment.
    Have you fought the type of row house fires FDNY does, regularly?
    Have you fought a major high rise fire, that FDNY deals with regularly?
    Do you have, not just a few blocks of high density, single story manufacturing or wharehouse buildings, but square miles?
    Do you have the absentee landlord tenements that FDNY deals with, regularly?
    Have you done dedicated truck work in any of the above?
    Have you done any engine work in any of the above?
    If not, how can you comment intelligently on any of what FDNY does?
    I can guarentee, Dr. Parasite, your "few years" of being a career guy doesn't make you an expert or even able to speak on the tactical and strategic needs of FDNY.


    AMEN!!!!!! Cutting man power??????? Typical way for politicians and admin to get raises. If you dont work in NY, then how can you know what your talking about? I cannot understand the thinking behind this, "judge someone that you dont know but by your ignorance."
    Joe FF/Paramedic

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    Same S**t...different City

    I got to say, all the best to you Guy's in FDNY. As a regualr there I understand your problems and would you believe it they are pulling the same crap in the next Biggest FD...London.

    The latest trick here is to re-assign Pumpers (Engines) from 2 Pump Stations to quieter suburban one Pump Stations...then in a year or so they will come along and say "hey this Station has less then 2000 runs yet it has 2 Pumps, we'll get rid of that"... so first off they are re-distributing the Pumps only to remove them later (A good way to trick the public you note)

    One of the biggest shocks are the plans to reduce the Station at Bethnal Green to one Pump. they are a busy East London Ghetto Fire Station, running about 4500 with 800-1000 fires....THEY are GOING TO MAKE THIS A SINGLE PUMP STATION!!!! (Two of our brothers were lost at a fire on that Stations area this summer )

    Once this plan works....(as already Stated, this is a 'can do' job anywhere in the World, they guys at Bethnal Green will still deliver!!!) Then the politicians can say;

    "Hey, this busy Ghetto Firehouse is doing OK with one Pump, so lots more can do without their second Pump"... and just Like FDNY London is always the place that gets held up as an example....

    "If London can do it, then the rest can do it...." All of a sudden Crews in Manchester, Glasgow, Belfast, Leeds, Liverpool....will do without their second Pumps.



    Good luck in your fight FDNY....within a few years London will be cut so far back that I won't be able to say I'm part of the 'World's Third biggest'.... we will be covering 620 densly build sq miles with 10,000,000 people with only half of the 7000 Ff's on 112 Stations that we have today..... Fight your fight, get the public on side and win....to few people gave a F**k in the UK, now we are in danger of seeing a National Fire Service that has been copied, emulated and held in high esteem the world over reduced to a third world 'Water squirting' outfit!!!!
    Last edited by SteveDude; 12-08-2004 at 11:53 AM.
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