1. #1
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    Default ride along in PG?

    Hello guys,

    i am a FF/paramedic from europe. in september i will make a short trip to NYC, washington dc etc and i also planned to spend the saturday september 9th (ie 8AM to 8PM) with firefighters from PG county.
    i have heard lots of (positive) things about you guys, being volunteers with many calls. a friend of mine has ridden with kentland and he told me the guys were very friendly and that he was much appreciated.
    Kentland is sure a busy station, but being a paramedic i also wanted to have the opportunity to not only ride along on engines but also on ambulances or medic units (i know i know, i have read here that many of you don't like EMS ;-) ) so i was told i should try kentland 46 which seems to be a much less known station. i couldn't find any infos on them.
    also i couldn't find anywhere any detailed stats for the whole county. being just there for a day i would, of course, prefer a very busy station.

    so i have a few questions for you :
    1. what station in PG runs the busiest ambulance except Laurel rescue?
    2. same question for busiest medic unit?
    3. i heard that the ambulances are often county-owned and staffed with career FFs. so do i have to ask for a ride along the station chief or an official from PG county?
    4. same question for the medic units.
    5. any one knows a busy station where i would have the opportunity to ride with engine, ambo and medic unit?
    6. i know that when riding with volunteers they are very friendly but what about when riding with career personnel? how do they appreciate observers, especially from overseas?
    7. an idea what kind of present i could offer the brothers? i was told you all love Absinthe but it's not such a good idea to import that by plane in the USA. so if you know something smaller...i also know you like to trade patches, unfortunately we don't have any.

    i was also told it is dangerous to be outside at night in PG that's why i also look for a station that is not only busy but also near a bus stop or metrotrain station to get safer back to my hotel in washington where my fiancée will be waiting for me.
    i am not familiar with these crime problems because in europe we still feel safe even at night.
    and concerning EMS it is still quite appreciated to ride "the bus" here but i think it depends on what kind of calls you get all the time...just playing the taxi is very frustrating.
    i have read on one of the PG VFD websites (by the way you all have nice websites there) that the call volume increases on weekends. is that true? because here it's usually the opposite. and what about the difference of night/day call volume?

    thanks guys for your answers.
    Dirk

  2. #2
    55 Years & Still Rolling
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    Several Thoughts.............

    Hyattsville, College Park, and West Lanham Hills are the Stations on the North Side of the County that are "walking distance" from a Metro Stop. If an Ambulance and Medic Unit are on your list of things to do, then try College Park.
    They also run an Engine and a Ladder Truck.

    The Absolute busiest is Silver Hill, with two Engines, and Ambulance and a Medic unit. They are a 1 K walk from a Metro stop, but I do not recommend walking in that area.

    Everyone is an individual personality, with their own likes and dislikes. Almost everyone will greet a visitor in a cordial manner.
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    Asst. Chief John R. Woods Sr. 1937 - 2006

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  3. #3
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    Default

    thank you.

    concerning silver hill station...
    do you have any stats of the different rigs they have?
    i have seen on the firehouse survey that they have 18,000 runs per year. that's a lot. that would mean that the medic and ambulance each have 6000 and the engine maybe 4000 calls?
    also there were no ride along forms on their website so maybe they don't do that. or is it a PG county wide observer program?
    do you know some one from that station who i could contact to arrange that?

  4. #4
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    Default

    I am the Volunteer Captain at Station 25 in Clinton Md. We have two Engines, a Ladder Truck, BLS and ALS Ambulances, both of which are very busy.

    I will try to answer your questions:

    1. what station in PG runs the busiest ambulance except Laurel rescue?
    Company 29, Silver Hill or any Company that runs Kentland's area

    2. same question for busiest medic unit?
    Medic 29, 25, 46 and 30...probably in that order.

    3. i heard that the ambulances are often county-owned and staffed with career FFs. so do i have to ask for a ride along the station chief or an official from PG county?
    If there is a Volunteer Chief (22,44 and 47 do not have Volunteers) than the Volunteer Chief, Officers or Career Station Officer will sign off the ride-along. Ownership of the EMS Units do not matter, although the VFD's that own EMS Units usually bill transports for income.

    4. same question for the medic units.
    The ALS Units are under supervision of EMS 1 and EMS 14. If you wish to ride an ALS unit, the Paramedics on the unit will contact the supervisor for permission. I believe the ride-along forms are the same.

    5. any one knows a busy station where i would have the opportunity to ride with engine, ambo and medic unit?
    Yeah, Station 25, right here in Clinton. The ALS unit averages 20 a day, the BLS 15-20 per day and the Engine usually is somewhere in the 10-12 range per day. The Ladder Truck usually goes once or twice too. We are in the top 5 busiest stations in the county...

    6. i know that when riding with volunteers they are very friendly but what about when riding with career personnel? how do they appreciate observers, especially from overseas
    Regardless of our pay status, we are all firemen. We appreciate any observer from anywhere as long as you come as a guest, and don't try to change the system in 12 hours. Our house has hosted people from all over the country, including Netherlands, Canada and Russia.

    7. an idea what kind of present i could offer the brothers? i was told you all love Absinthe but it's not such a good idea to import that by plane in the USA. so if you know something smaller...i also know you like to trade patches, unfortunately we don't have any.
    T-shirts, Patches, Memorabilia (I have a Danish Helmet at home) to trade is always good. Usually, we just like to share stories though, we don't expect gifts...but you will usually come away from our house with a few t-shirts.

    If you are interested in coming down here, email me at CVFD7704@yahoo.com

    If we know well in advance of your arrival, we may be able to pick you up and drop you off at your hotel, as we are not close to a Metro. But we have taxied guests around, and usually, someone is always willing to do it.
    Proud Right-Wing Extremist since 1992

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  5. #5
    55 Years & Still Rolling
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    Thumbs up Yeah, What He Said............

    TM25, Thanks for stepping in for the South Side. Dirk, I highly recommend Tillerman's offer. I didn't think of them since the Metro ends a few miles short of Clinton. I also just talked to the Chief at Silver Hill. I'll forward his email address by PM, he indicated they would be happy to have you drop in there as well.
    Never use Force! Get a Bigger Hammer.
    In memory of
    Chief Earle W. Woods, 1912 - 1997
    Asst. Chief John R. Woods Sr. 1937 - 2006

    IACOJ Budget Analyst

    I Refuse to be a Spectator. If I come to the Game, I'm Playing.

    www.gdvfd18.com

  6. #6
    firefighter7160
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    Default

    he sould ride at kentland, if there are any open seats on the truck....

  7. #7
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    thank you all for your answers.
    if i could i would do all the stations but since being there for just one day i will have to make a choice.

    25 and 29 are both exactly what i am looking for : busy and with a medic.
    Difficult to make a choice now...

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