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    Question What's in a name?

    Looking for some suggestions....We are in the process of spec'ing a new rescue truck...for the time being, anyway, we are calling it a rescue truck, and that's what I need assistance with....

    This unit will serve multiple functions, and I'm trying to come up with an appropriate unit designation. It will be a 2-door, non-walk in rescue, most likely on a medium-duty chassis (think GMC TopKick)....Probably look a lot like this.....






    ....only yellow .

    Its most common usage will be as a medical response unit, providing BLS support in a First Responder service, non-transport of course. Probably the majority of its runs (maybe 200 a year) will be of this type.

    Then, it will also respond to MVA's as a rescue unit. Our primary hydraulic tools are carried on a rescue style engine, but this unit will also roll on all MVA's for medical support and some supplemental rescue equipment.

    It will also be responding to structure fires as a service unit. It will carry a full complement of ISO service equipment (pike poles, tarps, fans, stuff like that) for fireground support. Also, it will include a breathing air cascade system for air service on the fireground, as well as a small refrigerator for drinks to serve in a rehab function (I know, it sounds like a lot of stuff, but it should all work out....but we did spec ourselves right out of a light-duty unit )

    Overall, between medical runs, MVA's, and structure fires, this unit will be rolling on a heckuva lot of calls, and performing several functions.

    So my question: What do you call a unit like this? A rescue? A Service unit? A Squad? I guess we can call it whatever we want, but what would it most commonly be called in your area?

    Does ISO require that you designate it a Service unit to get credit on rating?

    What is the definition of a Squad, anyway? I seem to recall that the "Squads" in FDNY are actually engines, but with a slightly different job role. Are Squads normally pumping apparatus, or can they be a non-pumping piece? (I don't know, I kind of like the sound of "Squad).

    Hope to get this unit out for bid in a couple of months, so I guess we'd better decide what to call it...
    Last edited by dmleblanc; 02-12-2005 at 09:27 PM.
    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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    Well, if Rescue ## is out of the question you can always call it Utility such and such.
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    "Rescue" is not out of the question...Just pondering some other options, since it's obviously going to be more than "just" a Rescue truck. "Utility" is good too, hadn't thought of that one...
    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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    We were having the same problem a couple of years ago when we were drawing up the specs for our new truck. Ours is smaller than the apparatus in the picture that you have posted but it sounds like they serve about the same purpose. We just decided to call it what it was and add our number to it... Fire-Rescue Unit 111. Since that's a bit of a mouthful to say when responding it is just dispatched as "Unit 111." No one else around has an apparatus named as such so it works out fine for us, and it looks pretty good written down the side of the truck too.
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    Arrow Special Services

    I would name it whatever makes the most sense in your area. If neighboring departments label ambulances as "rescues" or "squads," then I'd avoid those. Otherwise, either term if fine. Personally, I like calling it "Special Services" or something of the like. You could refer to it as Service XX on the radio.

    As for your fleet, is it all yellow? If so, I'd love to see photos of the rigs. I once had a yellow-only apparatus web site online and I'm looking at relaunching it. I'd love to feature your department.

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    I agree that you should be looking at similar apparatus in your area, if there are any. You will find that a rescue meand one thing to you, but totally different to someone else.
    The comments made by me are my opinions only. They DO NOT reflect the opinions of my employer(s). If you have an issue with something I may say, take it up with me, either by posting in the forums, emailing me through my profile, or PMing me through my profile.
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    I'd call it a rescue, if that meets your area's standards. It's equipped much like our Rescue 2 or a sort of "Rescue 1-lite".

    However, if rescue is something different in your area, go with "Support" or "Special Services".
    "Captain 1 to control, retone this as a structure and notify the fire chief...."

    Safety is no accident.

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    "Rescue" is the term that's most often used in this area. Although we don't use it as a radio designator. In our parish (county) we use a two-letter prefix for all fire units, regardless of function (Paincourtville units are PF-XX, Napoleonville is NF-XX, and so on...)Since we all use the same dispatch, on the same frequency, there needs to be a way to distinguish between departments on the radio (that's a whole other issue that I've argued with the other chiefs, with no success )

    Long story short, the name will not be used over the radio (i.e., over the radio it will be "PF-7" as opposed to "Rescue 7". Just trying to figure out what it should say on the side. And who knows, maybe one day I'll convince them to change radio designators

    "Special Services" ain't bad....has a ring to it.

    Cozmosis...yes, all our trucks are black over yellow. I have a few pics but nothing scanned yet, but I'm working on it....Here's one I do have, though....



    That's our newest, a 2000 American LaFrance on a Freightliner chassis. Didn't get the black roof on that one, though Will rectify that on the rescue. When I get the others scanned I'll be sure to post them.
    Last edited by dmleblanc; 02-12-2005 at 11:04 PM.
    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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    Thumbs up Hey Dwayne.....................

    From one Black over Yellow Truck owner to another, I prefer "Squad". However, my second choice is "Special Operations XXZZ", In your case, Special Operations PF11 or whatever number fits.

    ALSO, Nice Pumper you have there. What part of Louisiana are you in, those Mountains in the background are impressive.
    Last edited by hwoods; 02-12-2005 at 11:24 PM.
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    Good catch, Hwoods....No, you won't find anything like that in Louisiana. That pic was taken at the American LaFrance factory in Casper, Wyoming just before we picked it up

    It's a decent truck, but nothing special....program truck, cookie-cutter design. Nothing custom except the color . Was sort of an emergency purchase 4 years ago when our '58 Darley gave up the ghost (our last remaining red truck, as it happens). Pretty plain, but good compartment space and turns on a dime. We were supposed to have been purchasing a new rescue truck that year till the old PF-3 died and we needed something quick. But it's been a good truck, also hauls all our extrication equipment in addition to being our second-out for structure fires.
    Last edited by dmleblanc; 02-13-2005 at 12:15 AM.
    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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    Our department purchased a smaller but simular unit last year. It was called Service 1. This was done on advice that PIAL would consider this unit as part of the fire suppression equipment & it gets you credit by carrying certain equipment. It carries the same equipment & functions as your new unit will. We do have a generator on it & that seemd to be a plus. We do have an old box ambulance as Equipment 1 & did get some credit for equipment on it too. Our FD is in St. Tammany parish. Hope this helps.

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    We would have that problem in our area too. We are on a modified MABAS system.

    it goes as such
    every department has a number...assigned alphabetically
    11= A(don't want to name names)
    12= B
    13= C

    Officers go
    xx00 = chief
    xx01 = asst chief
    xx 02 = capt
    and so on till all officers are titled

    then every apparatus goes
    xx11 + xx12 = medics
    xx13 + xx14 + xx15 = engines
    xx16 = special unit (ie rescue, personel car, ect)
    xx17 = brush unit
    xx18 = tanker
    xx19 = aerial device

    you start over again with the 20's
    21 + 22 = medics
    and on and on

    so for example if I want department "A" to send me an engine I would call 1113...or whatever engine I need.

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    VolunteerFFEMT....That's exactly what I was thinking, that it would be considered "primarily" a service unit for PIAL purposes. So you purchase a "service" unit for PIAL points, but really it's a rescue truck most of the time. As long as it carries all the necessary equipment I don't suppose it matters, but when rating rolls around make sure it's the SERVICE truck....

    Elchup....That's similar to the system I wanted to implement, but I met resistance from the other chiefs. I'd prefer that the whole parish agreed to do it together, to avoid confusion, especially for our common dispatch center.
    Last edited by dmleblanc; 02-13-2005 at 12:39 AM.
    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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    That sums it up Chief Leblanc PIAL does not give credit for "rescues", medicals, MVA's,tankers,brush units or trucks. They only give credit for fire supression equipment & fire training. I know we deal with it all, but limiting the loss of property is their thing Just make sure you have the right equipment on it.

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    Originally posted by SpartanGuy
    I'd call it a rescue, if that meets your area's standards. It's equipped much like our Rescue 2 or a sort of "Rescue 1-lite".

    However, if rescue is something different in your area, go with "Support" or "Special Services".

    How about Diet Rescue?
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    It all depends on what your area allows you to classify it as. Around these parts of NY, that would be known as a Rescue. it would be classified as R- (unit identifier), are rescue is R-916 .

    If your just looking for an "in house" name for the rig, the stars are the limit!! Even though in our county a truck is called a "ladder", most of the guys down at Station #1 call their ladder "truck 917", just as we run a rescue pumper , so technically we are classified as an Engine, but some guys call the rig "squad 920"

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    Talking Hey Dwayne (Again)............................

    If it helps, here's our numbering system. It's largely based on the station number, as each station has a number, regardless of whether they are part of a larger department or not.

    Station 18:
    Engine 181 Like yours, a plain jane pumper

    Rescue Engine 183 Larger Engine with lots of extra compartment space and which is equipped to function as a Squad or as an Engine.

    Tower 18 105' Tower Ladder

    Squad 18 Heavy Rescue (If this looks like we run two Heavy Rescues, we do. Or, we will as soon as we get the equipment upgrade finished on 183)

    BX 18 4X4 Pickup Brush Truck

    Ambulance 188 BLS

    Medic 18 ALS

    They're at www.gdvfd18.com
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    We got trucks like that over in Dublin the only difference is that there walkin trucks...

    We have them down as "Emergency Tenders" And over the Radio's we call them "E.T's", Its not a mouth full and it gets straight to the point that if the truck is called its needed...hence the name Emergency Tender

    On our E.T's we got...
    Full EMS supplies
    18 Extra SCBA cylinders, 4 complete sets
    Full RTA cutting equipment, 2 sets
    Full Hazmats, Including Avgar Decontamination Shower
    Deployable Scafolding
    Thermal Imagining Equipment
    2 Petrol, 2 Diesel Generators
    Spot Lights, Graplng Hooks, Search Lights
    Full Swift Water Rescue Equipment

    So as u can see thats why we call them Emergency Tenders...
    Its just another option for yea...your new "E.T"
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    Do other departments in your area have the same type rig? If so, what do they call it?

    Here, we have county designations for everything. Your rig would be called a "Squad".
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    It all depends on what your area allows you to classify it as.
    We have no restrictions whatsoever on what it may be called. We can call it the Yellow Submarine for all they care....Well, I really shouldn't even say "for all they care", because we really don't even have a "they". There's no one who oversees our operation, really, we operate as best we can in compliance with NFPA, but there's no entity that requires us to.

    Indirectly, the Property Insurance Association of Louisiana (PIAL) has some influence over how we designate units, mainly in that a Service unit is worth some points on your rating...but it's not required...it's just a smart thing to do if you want the points. So it's in your best interest, rating-wise, to call it a Service unit, even if it runs rescue 90% of the time.

    At this point I'm leaning toward calling it a Service/Rescue. Thanks for the input, everyone, it's been very enlightening. I'll keep you posted as we get it out for bid and try to post some pics when it's finished.
    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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    We have no restrictions whatsoever on what it may be called.
    Our system is the result of going to a single, countywide dispatch/radio/automatic mutual aid system. Unit types and numbers (including station #'s) were assingned when the CAD for our county was designed, to eliminate the confusion of each department calling things by different names/numbers
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    I agree with those who recommend you look at how the terms are used in your local area. In my area, your vehicle would be classified as a heavy rescue unit. Radio designation would be "Rescue XXX" Using the term "squad" around here would be confusing since all of the squads in our area do patient transport. We use the term "service unit" when we need our trucks refueled during a long-term operation. Ask for a service truck around here and you would get a tank truck loaded with diesel. Go with something your neighboring departments will understand.

    JMHO

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    Well, we do have a parishwide dispatch system, but it's staffed the the Sheriff's Office and they don't know diddly about firefighting. They do an OK job, but they don't know the difference between an engine and a tricyle. So each department kind of does it's own thing. The system does make a little sense, because the PF, NF, LF, BL, or PB designation in front of each unit number lets the dispatcher at least know what department she's talking to. It just doesn't identify what type of unit it is.

    The upside of having no real oversight is that we're free to organize and name our stuff like we want. The downside is that we're free to organize and name our stuff like we want . Although autonomy is nice sometimes, I think it would be a good deal if the Office of Emergency Preparedness, who oversees the Dispatch center and is ultimately responsible for the emergency plan of the parish, would step in and make everyone work from the same playbook. But I guess they've got bigger fish to fry. As long as we continue to take care of our business and we get out the door when the pager goes off, well, don't make it a problem till it's a problem is their stance....
    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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    Well, we do have a parishwide dispatch system, but it's staffed the the Sheriff's Office and they don't know diddly about firefighting. They do an OK job, but they don't know the difference between an engine and a tricyle.
    LMAO

    With the automatic aid, we had to streamline everything. For example, my department used vehicle numbers (the order they were purchased), so we had Engine 7 (at station 1) and Engine 5 (at station 2). One of the deparments close to us had 800 #s for everything. A couple of the larger departments had the same numbers (Engine 1, Ladder 4 etc).

    This would create mayhem when you had units from 3 or 4 departments on the same scene. The IC would call Engine 1 and 3 people would answer

    Same thing with unit types. We had to make it all the same so if our IC has a Squad comming from the other side of the county, he knows what to expect, as to be called a Squad, it has to carry certain equipment. Same thing with trucks, they have to be at least 75'. So a 55' squirt is called an engine, while a 110' platform is called a truck
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    With the automatic aid, we had to streamline everything.
    Automatic aid....yet another concept I can't get the other chiefs to agree to....
    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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