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  1. #21
    55 Years & Still Rolling hwoods's Avatar
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    Talking Don't Forget.........

    Quote Originally Posted by elswappo
    Something else to keep in mind is that the east coast has been around longer. About 100 years longer! That's why theres old construction and highly populated areas.
    AND, Most importantly, it doesn't shake as much.......
    Never use Force! Get a Bigger Hammer.
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  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yaaooo
    Thanks for all the replies. Learning alot here

    ChicagoFF...I've never experienced any other fire department other than the ones in California. Yes as a probie there is a lot of shoe shining, uniform pressing, etc. From my experience my department models itself after LAFD..much like surrounding agencies probably model themselves after Chicago. LAFD is a very militaristic department and with that you get a lot of the military boot camp influences. Everything is lock step and God forbid you don't shine the sides of the soles on your boots. Its just the way out here. Knowing your equipment so well that if someone asks you what kind of paint the engine is painted in (50 Seikins Red, 10 Seikins White), how many lug nuts are on the rear dualies (10 outer, 8 inner), or how much carbon fiber your Scott SCBA is wrapped in (2.6 miles of carbon fibre).. you gotta know it.
    Is this stuff just because you're a probie or does everyone shine their boots for a parade?

    Probies in my house better know how to hook up to the standpipe, What is the prefered methods to gain access to the roof, how to conduct a search and always remain orientated to where they are in the building, how to remove a downed fireman...etc. How does knowing the above facts you listed actually make you a better fireman? (WTF is a "Seikin" anyway?) Unless you are the Dept mechanic the paint and lug nuts really don't matter do they? I guess our guys could memorize the number of dents, dings and scrapes.

    Everyone is going to be a little different and that is fine...but come on this has to be a joke of some kind...I know a lot of East Coast guys make light of the "Left" coast stuff but I figured most of it was made up. I hope the next thing you are going to tell us isn't that every morning after committe work you guys engage in aromatherapy sessions!

    Seriously what ever floats your boat...but Honestly what has happened to the fire departments in this country?

    FTM-PTB
    Last edited by FFFRED; 10-31-2005 at 08:29 AM.

  3. #23
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    East coast = Tradition.

    Leather Forever !!!!

  4. #24
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    Default Chain Saws

    First of all, I'm not from the East Coast nor am I from the West Coast...I'm from somewhere in the middle. Here are a few observations, and please let me know if I'm way off base....Most of my generalizations are based on LAFD and FDNY, but I know there are some differences. Both operations fascinate me and I have a great deal of respect for the brothers from all over the US.

    West Coast FD's like LAFD use Chain Saws for Aggressive Roof Ventilation, and from what I see, they practice it often and are very proficient in this art.

    East Coast FD's like FDNY are more likely to use a K-12 for Roof Ventilation.

    I haven't seen many pictures of West Coast FD's using a halligan to force a door...I've seen a lot of pictures of them using K-12's with the blade in the outboard position, though. East Coasters love their Halligans.

    West Coasters carry pickhead axes on their belts....I think East Coasters are more likely to use a flat head axe.

    East Coast FD's punch through ceilings and roof materials with roof hooks and pike poles, West Coasters use the Trash Hook.

    West Coast FD's use PPV...in the East, I think it's a dirty word.

    Yellow Gear with zippers on the legs, West Coast...Black Gear, East Coast.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but in FDNY, an officer doesn't go to the roof to supervise ventilation...in LA, there is always an officer present.

    Not wishing to start this whole debate up because I know it's elsewhere so I'll say it subliminally (East Coast is more likely to use smooth bore tips on knobs) and I don't want to start a fight or anything.

    LAFD uses Task Forces with 2 Engines, 1 TDA and 10 personnel as one of their primary response modes...they do divide duties by position. FDNY uses units as separate resources, but has VERY WELL PUT TOGETHER DUTIES by position, including where in the building you should be located if a mayday occurs.

    Again, just some observations...I know there are anomalies on either coast. Great discussion, though!

  5. #25
    Permanently Removed CALFFBOU's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ltmdepas3280
    I'll take a 5 story 1 million sq foot factory job over a 1 million acres of grass anyday and wish the brothers on the west coast could feel that rush.
    I have been on some working high rise fires. Rare, but fun. The major wildland fires can be fun too.


  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by phyrngn

    Yellow Gear with zippers on the legs, West Coast...Black Gear, East Coast.
    Not all of us have zippers on our legs. Some West Coast FDs (Bay Area) wear black turnouts too.

  7. #27
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    I stand corrected BOU Like I said, I'm not from there, and I don't intend to make sweeping generalizations for either side...just a few observations.

    If I'm not mistaken, I've seen a few LA County guys wearing leather lids, too

    That's why these forums are fun...we can discuss the differences and similarities...it wouldn't be interesting at all if we did things the same now, would it

    I do have to say...chasing a fire up a hill or mountain is not my idea of fun...I have a lot of respect for you guys that leave for one of those and don't get home for weeks @ a time.

  8. #28
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    I have a theory about this whole East Coast v. West Coast thing. I don't think it exists. For instance, there are plenty of FDs in CA where you'll see leather helmets in service, and there are plenty of FDs on the east coast that wear salad bowls on their heads. Some big cities on the west wear black turnouts, and some places "back east" wear yellow.

    On the west coast:
    Oakland, CA FD: est 1869
    Sacramento, CA FD: est 1850
    San Francisco, CA FD: est 1851

    on the east coast:
    Clifton, NJ: 1918
    Baltimore City: 1858
    Philadelphia: 1840

    I've heard that West Coast FDs pay more; coule it be because west coast FFs are more likely to be recieving EMT-P pay incentives? Also, I believe the 3 platoon system is more common on the West Coast than on the East- maybe the westies are paid more because they work more (does anyone have any info on this?).

  9. #29
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    What Ive always wondered is how did the west coast fire service develope the way it has. Not so much tactics, but the other stuf like gear, polishing lugnuts, know what kind of polish is on your boots and so on. We are the same way down here.

    This is a question that I’m not sure has a really good answer to it. My dad retired 4 years ago from a suburban department, 4 stations and about 100 total members.
    As a kid, I still have memories of watching him leave for work in his class ‘A’ dress uniform. Why? It was required to be worn when you reported for duty, and, when you were relieved from duty the following morning. Once roll call was completed, on-duty personnel changed into their ‘khaki’s’, or work-day uniform, unless of course it was Monday-Friday, then promptly at 0900 hrs their dungaree’s were the uniform, until 1800 hrs sharp or it was meal time.
    I’ve spoken with him plenty, in regard to his years on-the-job, he has a career full of stories, such as washing rigs at 2am following a night run, simply because it was raining out. Waxing a rig weekly, polishing apparatus floors, and the like. They, for a number of years operated in an almost entirely military fashion. No good reason, it was just the way it was.
    Conversely, my grandfather, who retired from the department I work for has told stories that are eerily similar, to an extent. Formal roll call was a daily occurrence, as was a strict uniform, until 0900 hrs, in which case almost any clothing was acceptable until change of shift the following morning.
    Tradition plays a big part in a lot of these attitudes, or policies. I’m sure many of the east coast departments were much more ‘strict’ back in the day, maybe the west coast just needs to catch up now.
    Maybe it’s just a shift in societal attitude, in general, rather than just our jobs. The prevailing attitude today is to not worry about spit and polish so much anymore, as it is about doing your job. We still have traditions aplenty though; spring house cleaning dates back to the ‘horse drawn days’, as does flushing the apparatus floor on Saturday’s.
    Last edited by jasper45; 10-31-2005 at 12:17 PM.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by phyrngn

    If I'm not mistaken, I've seen a few LA County guys wearing leather lids, too
    The LA County guys were allowed to buy their own leathers to honor 9/11.
    It is not a standard issue PPE.

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by KingHippo
    I've heard that West Coast FDs pay more; coule it be because west coast FFs are more likely to be recieving EMT-P pay incentives? Also, I believe the 3 platoon system is more common on the West Coast than on the East- maybe the westies are paid more because they work more (does anyone have any info on this?).
    True on the pay. Ofcourse it is all based on ther cost of living. Not every West Coast FF is a medic, but atleast an EMT.

    Yes, the 3 platoon shift is pretty much the standard here. Mainly the 56 hour week. I dont know about the "work more, paid more" comment.

    Hope that answers some questions.
    Last edited by CALFFBOU; 10-31-2005 at 01:40 PM.

  12. #32
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    i have only been on 2.5 years on a small paid department but when i started you had to coem to work in your class b with badge and name tag and leave with it along with any public detail and we had to wash the truck after every run no matter the time. i washed it 5 times one shift after we had a large commercial building fire and we had to go and check it and hit hot spots every couple hours. my captain is a former marine and is constantly on me for not shining my boots so i bought a back up pair and keep them under my bed for when we have a detail.

  13. #33
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    This is a question that I’m not sure has a really good answer to it. My dad retired 4 years ago from a suburban department, 4 stations and about 100 total members.
    As a kid, I still have memories of watching him leave for work in his class ‘A’ dress uniform. Why? It was required to be worn when you reported for duty, and, when you were relieved from duty the following morning. Once roll call was completed, on-duty personnel changed into their ‘khaki’s’, or work-day uniform, unless of course it was Monday-Friday, then promptly at 0900 hrs their dungaree’s were the uniform, until 1800 hrs sharp or it was meal time.
    I’ve spoken with him plenty, in regard to his years on-the-job, he has a career full of stories, such as washing rigs at 2am following a night run, simply because it was raining out. Waxing a rig weekly, polishing apparatus floors, and the like. They, for a number of years operated in an almost entirely military fashion. No good reason, it was just the way it was.
    Conversely, my grandfather, who retired from the department I work for has told stories that are eerily similar, to an extent. Formal roll call was a daily occurrence, as was a strict uniform, until 0900 hrs, in which case almost any clothing was acceptable until change of shift the following morning.
    Tradition plays a big part in a lot of these attitudes, or policies. I’m sure many of the east coast departments were much more ‘strict’ back in the day, maybe the west coast just needs to catch up now.
    Maybe it’s just a shift in societal attitude, in general, rather than just our jobs. The prevailing attitude today is to not worry about spit and polish so much anymore, as it is about doing your job. We still have traditions aplenty though; spring house cleaning dates back to the ‘horse drawn days’, as does flushing the apparatus floor on Saturday’s.
    More or less this is what I gathered from the old timers I know and a few that I had the pleasure of working with...along with my own experiences.

    In the urban cities much of the routine was done away with in the 1960-70s during the arson rages that tore apart entire communities. It was hard for anyone to really give-a-f*ck after the 20th run/3rd job of the night tour and it was only 0200. Guys had gone through 4-6 pairs of clothes and all were left smoky & wet.

    There are many interesting stories of the attitudes the men and their houses took on after working under conditions such as these.

    Much of the west coast with its reduced density and higher standard of living and the relative newness of everything has kept much of the same from happening to them. They certainly aren't doing as many phone alarms for fires and they certainly aren't putting their turnouts on for the 6th time to night and making ones way to the roof of a 6 floor tenement or the 14th floor of a project with the elevators OOS. As one can see there is a usual difference between a company in the worst part of Oakland than in some sunny beach community down south. So even on the same coast there is a difference. It isn't so much geography it is those who see whats really important in life and those who don't know how lucky they have it.

    As I experinced with the suburban department I worked for...when times were busy and the company was busy...the chiefs left you alone and all the silly sh*t they always worried about didn't matter anymore. However when times got slow and these chiefs had to justify thier jobs....things could get ugly. Nothing makes me cringe more than a micro-manager chief with time on his hands.

    Basicly there aren't as many differences as most think...at least I hope so...I have been surprised on this forum before though.

    FTM-PTB

  14. #34
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    QUOTE: "West Coast FD's like LAFD use Chain Saws for Aggressive Roof Ventilation, and from what I see, they practice it often and are very proficient in this art.

    East Coast FD's like FDNY are more likely to use a K-12 for Roof Ventilation."


    Being an East-Coaster (right between NYC and Philadelphia - ~55 miles from each) I have to say the saw that is used is dependant on the building construction (I don't see how this would be any different no matter where you are). I'll use a chain saw for a wooden roof (or axe on occassion depending on the shingle material...i.e. slate) and a circular saw (K-12 style) on a metal roof.

    p.s.- we're issued leathers (although some request tupperware) and I love them. Once they've been in a few hot situations they fit like a glove.

    www.palmerfire.org
    Last edited by Ladder27; 10-31-2005 at 02:20 PM.

  15. #35
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    I think it is safe to say there is no standard regarding chain saws or K12 on the East and West Coast.

  16. #36
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    NonsurfingCAFF: I see you don't deny drinking Zima or the girly shorts, though

    I dunno, I'd rather take a warehouse with a million shredded tires inside(which we had happen about six years ago), than a wildfire. Any brush fire that requires me to do more walking than the distance it takes me to walk to the rear of our brush truck to sit on the rear tailgate while we pump and roll is too big of a fire.
    "Captain 1 to control, retone this as a structure and notify the fire chief...."

    Safety is no accident.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SpartanGuy
    Any brush fire that requires me to do more walking than the distance it takes me to walk to the rear of our brush truck to sit on the rear tailgate while we pump and roll is too big of a fire.
    Wait...let me get this right, you SIT on the outside of a moving apparatus? Didn't know that was still practiced..Do you have more than 10ft of booster line for the brush truck?
    FF/NREMT-B

    FTM-PTB!!

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  18. #38
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    Yes. I sit on the back of a moving apparatus. Yes, we have 150' of booster line.

    It's better, in my eyes, to spray water from the back of a slowly moving pick-up truck then to charge up a hill on a forty-five degree angle in full structural gear to put out a spot fire. But that's just my logic.

    Notice, I said its ME sitting on the back, not some junior, not some other firefighter. I'm more willing to take risks with myself than I am with others, but I think any officer thinks that way...


    If you think that's bad, Oakland doesn't even wear turnout pants! Yell at them!
    "Captain 1 to control, retone this as a structure and notify the fire chief...."

    Safety is no accident.

  19. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpartanGuy
    If you think that's bad, Oakland doesn't even wear turnout pants! Yell at them!
    For what its worth, I was just on major fire (7 alarms) with Oakland and I remember all of them wearing full black turnouts. (pants and all)

    Additionally, they were super cool guys to work with! I didnt even know them and we were chatting it up. Instant bros! Thats what I love about the fire service!

  20. #40
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    Why are you wearing structure gear to a grass/brush fire?

    Birken

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