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  1. #1
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    Question SOPs on Vehicle Operations & Concealed Weapons

    I have dropped this into a couple of different forums so if you read it more that once sorry. My department is a paid-on-call department that handles both fire and EMS calls. We have approx 40 members and operate in a rural/suburban interface area with a population of approx. 7000 spread over 21 square miles. We respond to approx. 400-500 calls a year, which are dispatched by a neighboring PD via pager call (radio & alpha). We respond either to the station or to the scene depending on our location. We are permitted lights and sirens in our POVs (in accordance with Ohio state laws). I am looking for SOPs regarding vehicular operation (both Apparatus and POV). I am also looking for SOPs regarding carrying and handling of concealed weapons, both by personnel and those which might be legally carried by a patient (Ohio does issue CCW permits to residents). Any assistance or examples of relevant SOPs would be greatly appreciated. Feel free to email me at: mpd643@hotmail.com.

    Thanks in advance,
    C. Johnson


  2. #2
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    State of KS does not have a CCW law in affect so obviously we do not carry them...also I do not know the legalities of carrying one while responding to a call.

    Now, we had an MVA last year where I was the senior firefighter on-scene...and we were gettin somebody in the truck to support the head and cover the patient while we did extrication. The firefighter climbing in through the rear of the vehicle all of a sudden stopped and yelled to me that we had a shotgun in the rear seat...I had him pull back and we notified the SO that was on scene. who then removed the firearm...we could have, we're all familier with firearms...but hell, their there just standin around let them get the darn gun...also if it for some reason goes off my guys will be ok.

  3. #3
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    I "THINK" the laws in Kentucky are that firearms are not allowed around fire stations except when carried by LEOs.At any rate,find out in your state/Commonwealth for sure.
    At my volunteer department,we'd have guys respond during hunting season and leave their guns in their vehicles(locked up and out of sight,even in a rural area)and the most anyone would say was"Hey,you got that .308 you been wanting yet?Let's see it."
    I know a couple with Kentucky CCDWs and they have locked their carry pieces in their gear grid while we were out.Granted someone could come in and try to find out what was so valuable to be locked up but the neighbors to the station know most of the folks on the department at least on sight and know they can go up and ask what someone is doing wandering around the bays when no one else is there.
    It's a lot different when on a call,you find the back seat has enough firearms and ammunition to stop the Iraqi insurgents on their own but that's why we have the SO and PD respond as well.
    Despite numerous unintentional discharges and inability to open a break-action shotgun,they're the ones supposed to be familiar with firearms while we handle the fire part.
    Last edited by doughesson; 03-08-2006 at 12:44 PM.

  4. #4
    Forum Member fireguy919's Avatar
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    You may have to write your own policy or sog for that. There is no law that says members canít carry on a scene. We have a few members that are police officers and allow them to carry inside station. They have look boxes at their gear lockers. How ever if your not pd then the sign on the building covers it. We did post the not aloud to carry signs at the front doors and rest of the members must follow that rule.

    But then again its not the guy with the permit to carry that we have to worry about. It's the guy that can't get the permit to carry.
    Training does not make perfect. Training makes permanent!

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  5. #5
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    This is a topic that has been hashed here time and time again and there are many views on it.

    We operate pretty simple. There are no weapons in our ambulances period unless carried by a police officer escorting a patient to a hospital. A patient with a weapon isn't going in my ambulance Permit to Carry or Not. It's there right to bear arms but It's my right to deny their transport with a weapon.

    Fire Department keeps a pretty simple rule.....No Guns in the station, apparatus, or the scene period. We have several members that are LEOs, and Correctional Employees including the Chief, and his Deputy. We simply view it as a safety thing and it's agreed upon by all. Infact when the subject came to a vote it passed 45-0. When you are acting as a firefighter or responding in such a capacity there is no need to have a fire-arm. Those of our members that are LEOs that actually carry off duty....I think one does because of the nature of his job will lock his weapon up if he responds or simply not go knowing full spectrum of the awsome responsibility he carries at his side.

  6. #6
    R.I.P K.Apuzzio 4/11/06 Fargo2722's Avatar
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    we also have several members that are LEO's and because many of them respond following a shift or hang at the firehouse following/preceeding a shift we purchased small gun lockers that are now mounted in the bays near the gear lockers. While no SOG has been specifically written these members each have their own locker with their own key and they will check their weapons in and out. They do not carry while riding fire apparatus.

  7. #7
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    At our Dept., with the exception of LEO's and the Investigations Division. No guns are allowed on the FD property, in your vehicle, or on your person.
    There of course is an understanding, if you had your weapon with you (concealed carry allowed with permit) and was out and about when a run comes out, the weapon stays locked in your vehicle until the run is over then you take the weapon off the property as soon as you can.

  8. #8
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    Darn, You guys are strict.
    When I was with the VFD, and then when hired to work paid, many of us carried concealed on calls.
    Sometimes it wasn't always concealed. An assistant chief who was off duty from his job at a local prison showed up to a medical call with a pistol in a holster on his side once. Other FFs who were paid leo or volunteer Reserve Deputies arrived on scenes and worked calls with gun belts on. I worked shifts with people who had pistols and we'd bring our cleaning kits and spend down time cleaning them in the station. The Chief kept a .38 special and cuffs in his Chief's truck and held a local commission enableling him to arrest if necessary. I almost always had my pistol with me. If I pulled up to a burner I'd take it off and put it in a glove/map box under the drivers seat of the first out pumper before bunkering up.
    Shotgun In The Back Seat?!? Get real. Grab it, hand it to the nearest FF or cop and get back to work.

    Cellblock
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  9. #9
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    I "THINK" the laws in Kentucky are that firearms are not allowed around fire stations except when carried by LEOs.
    Actually, our esteemed Kentucky Legislators have passed a couple of amendments to the CCDW bill, one of which specifically prohibits a government from enacting a policy to prevent CCDW permit holding employees from posessing their firearm in government owned vehicles. Seems that after the CCDW bill took effect, the state's vehicle policy prevented the very legislators who sponsored the bill to have their weapons in the state owned fleet cars.
    The other amendment was one that removed fire stations from the occupancies that, at the owners discretion, may prohibit CCDW permit holders from carrying.....

  10. #10
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    If you are not allowed to have firearms in the firehouse, then how do you have your block shoots?

  11. #11
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    We have simple rules......
    No firearms in the Firehouse.
    No carrying firearms on calls. (what, you gonna shoot the fire?)
    No firearms in the Department Vehicles.
    (ALL subject to extreme situation like Terrorist attack or Martial Law)

    Only exception is our FIRE POLICE which is a member who is also a Sworn Police Officer.

    Firearms in POV not our decision. 100% Legal by State Law.

    Firearms "found" on scene to be removed/secured only by Law Enforcement.
    Moving is a judgement call {when not a crime scene, such as in a persons home on a EMS call} and gets done only by trained/familiar personnel. (usually me since I'm the resident "gun nut")

    The only personnel who I know regularly carry concealed have CCW permits, are LEO's, and respond alone to some of the rougher areas of town on EMR calls.
    In this case we fall back on the "judged by 12 rather than carried by 6" frame of mind. There are exceptions to every rule.

    Some of us are looking into being Taser Certified with our Police Department this year in case we have to help out the P.D. in searching for a subject in the woods as we often do we could use the police department's non-lethal weapons.
    (yes it happens frequently here that we do officer assistance)

    We most definitely do not venture into the snake infested woods around here unarmed, but there needs to be a less than lethal alternative for humans.

    Note: Edited for clarification of message.
    Last edited by MarionMedic; 05-01-2006 at 03:58 PM.

  12. #12
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    Firearms "found" on scene to be moved/removed/secured only by Law Enforcement.
    A "gun nut"? Firearms are ALWAYS a law enforcement concern. Always.
    In this case we fall back on the "judged by 12 rather than carried by 6" rule.
    if the use of deadly fore is justified, then no jury would be necessary. There is no "rule" to this effect.
    Some of us are looking into being Taser Certified with our Police Department this year in case we have to help out the P.D. on a call we could use the officers non-lethal weapon.
    Now there's a great idea.

    What if the officer wanted to get SCBA certified and use your gear and apparatus. You would be on here screaming (probably rightly so). What if the officer wanted to use your fire fighting gear for law enforcement purposes? Again, another fit. Screw the Taser, just use his weapon!

    You, dude, have a seriously warped view of the world.

  13. #13
    Forum Member Weruj1's Avatar
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    we have one on CCW that is a policy and I can email you vehicle ops .....may take me a couple of days so hang on.........
    IACOJ both divisions and PROUD OF IT !
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  14. #14
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    A paid US LEO that does not have his firearm with him 24/7 should be out of a job. That one would think about leaving his weapon elsewhere is hard to believe. It's 24/7 job and an unarmed cop is a victim.

    There's a news story a few years ago about a Texas cop (unarmed) in church when a mass shooting/murder spree occured during services. The cop was reduced to throwing himself over his son as a shield. If he had been carrying he could have engaged the shooter and quite possible prevented several deaths. The selfrecrimination over your poor judgement and personal failure would have to be endless.

  15. #15
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    Our department has the following rules.

    Our Search and Rescue / EMS personel can carry openly if they have completed a firearms course, or concealed if they have a state permit (which includes the course). Out of state permits (like the Non resident Ohio Permit) is not valid for CCW if "on duty". Our SAR folks go out into the brush, and snakes, mountain lions, cyotes, and other critters are a real issue. While Arizona is an "open carry" state (anybody who can legaly own a gun may carry one in a visable holster) our department requires a gun safety and handling course if you want to carry one.

  16. #16
    Forum Member nyckftbl's Avatar
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    A paid US LEO that does not have his firearm with him 24/7 should be out of a job. That one would think about leaving his weapon elsewhere is hard to believe. It's 24/7 job and an unarmed cop is a victim.

    There's a news story a few years ago about a Texas cop (unarmed) in church when a mass shooting/murder spree occured during services. The cop was reduced to throwing himself over his son as a shield. If he had been carrying he could have engaged the shooter and quite possible prevented several deaths. The selfrecrimination over your poor judgement and personal failure would have to be endless.
    Didnt a FF recently go through a sh*tstorm of trouble for operating out of his jurisdiction at the Rhode Island nightclub fire? Cops dont carry their guns to be heroes in case something happens somewhere else. I know cops who have carried after an arrest of certain people, and feared retaliation. In fact, if Im not mistaken, off duty cops from outside NYC are not allowed to carry in NYC.
    Proud East Coast Traditionalist.

  17. #17
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    We did post the not aloud to carry signs at the front doors and rest of the members must follow that rule.

    But then again its not the guy with the permit to carry that we have to worry about. It's the guy that can't get the permit to carry.


    You mean the guy without the permit who can assume there's no one else with a gun inside that building that lacks armed security, but has a "no guns allowed" sign?

    I do not support carrying concealed weapons on calls or when actually "on duty" at all; but I can't see a reason to advertise it to the world (or even ban it from the station for personnel who may be transient). Have a call, secure the weapon in your POV.

    If law enforcement is on the scene, they will be asked to secure any weapons found -- including removing the weapon from the patient's possession. If we have a member who is an off-duty LEO, he gets the job if no on-duty LEO is around. I only remember one incident we legitimately had to secure a weapon w/o law enforcement being there to perform the task, and with improving staffing levels, it's rarer and rarer to be short on Troopers in my area.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by nyckftbl
    Didnt a FF recently go through a sh*tstorm of trouble for operating out of his jurisdiction at the Rhode Island nightclub fire? Cops dont carry their guns to be heroes in case something happens somewhere else. I know cops who have carried after an arrest of certain people, and feared retaliation. In fact, if Im not mistaken, off duty cops from outside NYC are not allowed to carry in NYC.
    You're wrong. NYPD officers, like all municipalities, has statewide jurisdiction. DHS regulations have made interstate carrying weapons across state lines by sworn LEO acceptable.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by nyckftbl
    Didnt a FF recently go through a sh*tstorm of trouble for operating out of his jurisdiction at the Rhode Island nightclub fire? Cops dont carry their guns to be heroes in case something happens somewhere else. I know cops who have carried after an arrest of certain people, and feared retaliation. In fact, if Im not mistaken, off duty cops from outside NYC are not allowed to carry in NYC.
    George, I don't think he was saying that NYPD couldn't carry outside of NYC. I believe he meant cops from OUTSIDE NYC couldn't come down there and carry off duty??? Do you know of any such policy? As a L.E.O, you would know better than I.
    Tom

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  20. #20
    Forum Member nyckftbl's Avatar
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    You're wrong. NYPD officers, like all municipalities, has statewide jurisdiction. DHS regulations have made interstate carrying weapons across state lines by sworn LEO acceptable.
    Nice tact, George. I was referring to non NYPD cops carrying within NYC, but I apologize if that is incorrect also. I must have heard bad information. Regardless, I completely disagree with the statement that a cop that does not carry 24/7 should be out of a job. I was merely using my apparent misinformation as an example.

    Edited again: Was just personally told by a Bergen County cop ( Im sure you'll tell me Im wrong again in such a short precise way) that the national law that President Bush signed in 2004 made it possible for any LEO to carry nationwide. However, before that, and Im sure, since, NYC has had their own laws and feelings about this subject. Also, Bergen Cops cannot carry within NYC (Or so a Bergen Cop JUST told me) because of insurance issues. If Im wrong, I would appreciate a courteous response, and maybe an explanation of the law. Thank you.
    Last edited by nyckftbl; 04-09-2006 at 08:30 PM.
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