1. #1
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    224

    Default Tough Situation in Fairfax, Virginia

    http://www.wusa9.com/video/player.aspx?aid=45318&bw=

    I wonder if the primary search team was specifically told to search the bathroom.

  2. #2
    Forum Member
    FireCapt1951retired's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2000
    Location
    Between here and there
    Posts
    790

    Default

    I'm not going to judge what they did or didn't do, I wasn't there. I know I was taught from the beginning of my career that if you had a SFD and were going to do a primary search to make sure you check 2 areas, especially at night. Those 2 areas were the bedrooms and the bathroom. Over my career I did find numerous (5 or 6 times) people in the bathroom laying in the bathtub with the water running and filling the tub.

  3. #3
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    NE OHIO
    Posts
    46

    Default

    what a bad situation,i just hope people arn't to quick to judge our bros. i know if i were in their shoes i would feel like *****.best of luck to all the fairfax FF and this women's family!!

  4. #4
    OSD122

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    125

    Default

    The outcome of this one should be interesting. I know that Fairfax County Fire has issues in the fire suppresion end of things, and I'm sure this incident wont have a happy ending for some folks.

  5. #5
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    30

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by OSD122 View Post
    I know that Fairfax County Fire has issues in the fire suppresion end of things, ...
    I'm curious. To what issues are you referring?

  6. #6
    Hook & Can

    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    376

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FireLt1951 View Post
    I'm not going to judge what they did or didn't do, I wasn't there. I know I was taught from the beginning of my career that if you had a SFD and were going to do a primary search to make sure you check 2 areas, especially at night. Those 2 areas were the bedrooms and the bathroom. Over my career I did find numerous (5 or 6 times) people in the bathroom laying in the bathtub with the water running and filling the tub.
    Similar thing was drilled into my head...check the bathrooms and closets, especially if there are children living in the residence.

  7. #7
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    11

    Default

    Coming from a Chief’s point of view I commend their Chief on his honesty during the interview. It is obvious there was time lost somewhere. Before entry or more likely after entry. Communication is key. In such a small area the door should have been found, but no one is perfect. The public will have to realize this. The department members involved will have to be honest, which if one makes a mistake is hard to do. But they can all learn from this if it is evaluated correctly. My heartfelt wishes to the family.

  8. #8
    OSD122

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    125

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BScott View Post
    I'm curious. To what issues are you referring?
    Well for one, they have a lot of people wearing white helmets and bosing suppression units who came from the EMS side of the house and very little firefighting experiance when they get promoted. FYI, medics are given extra points on suppression promotional exams.

    As for this fire, it's been reported that the officer on the first arriving engine (E-419) sprained his ankle when he stepped out of the rig and kept his engine company from going in after the fire so that the rescue company (R-419) could get upstairs and to the victim.

  9. #9
    MembersZone Subscriber
    fireslayer1237's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Wa
    Posts
    204

    Default

    Is it just me or is their chief not doing a very good job backing his firefighters. I think that even if you are not happy with an outcome from a fire you dont go in front of the public and express it.

    my heart goes out to these brothers as they cope with this.
    FOOLS
    RFB-KTF-DTRT

  10. #10
    Forum Member
    MemphisE34a's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Memphis, TN - USA
    Posts
    2,523

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by fireslayer1237 View Post
    Is it just me or is their chief not doing a very good job backing his firefighters. I think that even if you are not happy with an outcome from a fire you dont go in front of the public and express it.

    my heart goes out to these brothers as they cope with this.
    Yeah, I'm sure its easy for the Chief to say what should have been done while he's sipping coffee the next morning reading the report.
    Last edited by MemphisE34a; 06-02-2007 at 10:18 PM.
    RK
    cell #901-494-9437

    Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

  11. #11
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    119

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by fireslayer1237 View Post
    Is it just me or is their chief not doing a very good job backing his firefighters. I think that even if you are not happy with an outcome from a fire you dont go in front of the public and express it.

    my heart goes out to these brothers as they cope with this.
    I was thinking the same thing and I agree with you 100%. Their chief sounds kinda like mine. Well, I don't know this guy, so maybe my chief is worse. He'd sell his men out in a heart beat to keep himself looking good.

    So OSD 122, does Fairfax County FD have morale problems like my FD?

  12. #12
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Posts
    32

    Default

    First- I do not work for Fairfax County. I work for the City of Fairfax. I just want to make a quick comment regarding the speculation around the Fire Chief.

    Second- He is the Interim Fire Chief, normally the Assistant Chief of Operations. A new Fire Chief has been selected and will be starting this month I believe.

    Third- I don't want to speak for members of the County Fire Department but I do not think I am going far out on a limb in saying that Chief Rohr is respected by the troops and a stand up guy. If you think about what he said, he was just being honest. Based on the facts at hand he felt that they should have found the victim.

    Adrian Munday
    City of Fairfax Fire Department

  13. #13
    Forum Member
    MemphisE34a's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Memphis, TN - USA
    Posts
    2,523

    Default

    Just curious. I am assuming that the Chief and everyone backing him up thinks that because the lady was later found in the bathroom that she was presumably there the entire time??

    How do you know that at the time of the initial search the bathroom wasn't clear??

    People that are still alive during the primary may still be capable of mobility. Perhaps the search team and the victim circled each other during the initial search and the victim later collapsed and died in the bathroom after it had been scanned. Maybe a stretch, but possible.
    RK
    cell #901-494-9437

    Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

  14. #14
    MembersZone Subscriber
    fireslayer1237's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Wa
    Posts
    204

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by RE33FFX View Post
    First- I do not work for Fairfax County. I work for the City of Fairfax. I just want to make a quick comment regarding the speculation around the Fire Chief.

    Second- He is the Interim Fire Chief, normally the Assistant Chief of Operations. A new Fire Chief has been selected and will be starting this month I believe.

    Third- I don't want to speak for members of the County Fire Department but I do not think I am going far out on a limb in saying that Chief Rohr is respected by the troops and a stand up guy. If you think about what he said, he was just being honest. Based on the facts at hand he felt that they should have found the victim.

    Adrian Munday
    City of Fairfax Fire Department

    I can understand what he said but I do not believe it is something that should be brought out to the public in that way.
    FOOLS
    RFB-KTF-DTRT

  15. #15
    OSD122

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    125

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by TurdFergeson View Post
    So OSD 122, does Fairfax County FD have morale problems like my FD?
    I can't speak for everyone, but I know a few guys and gals on the job in the county and they're morale isn't all that bad. Fairfax County has some good people who train hard and go just as hard at a fire, but I think the problems are with a number white helmets and administators.

  16. #16
    EuroFirefighter.com
    PaulGRIMWOOD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 1999
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    831

    Default

    I have been involved in several incidents such as this tragic scenario during my career. I really feel for the firefighters involved, for the victim and the family.

    Firstly the Chief is being open and honest but sometimes it is better not to comment at all, pending investigation.

    Secondly, he mentioned lot of 'clutter' in the search area. Where there is heavy smoke and clutter it is easy to miss a closed door! I have searched personally and missed closed doors (no victims but there could have been) and kicked myself afterwards! Hey I am not making excuses here because it shouldn't happen .... but it does. It raises a training need because in clutter situations with thick smoke it is easy to miss fine points, like a door handle.

    Maybe there should have been a VES approach .... maybe staffing would not suit this approach on this occasion.

    LEARN from this situation because it could happen to your firefighters tomorrow! Practice searching in next to zero visibility where everything is one color .... walls, ceiling, windows .... all black! There maybe other circumstances involved here but this type of event has occurred many many times before. Sometimes there were no victims involved .... sometimes the media never latched onto the story. No excuses but I can understand how this may occur.

    There maybe a nation-wide training need for searching under such conditions. We should ALL look at our own approach here. In training fires I see firefighters missing doors over and again.

  17. #17
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Northeast Coast
    Posts
    3,860

    Default

    RE33FFX maybe you could shed some light as to the staffing of the first due units? Also, did I miss a piece on the number of units in the building and more importantly on the third floor? It very well may be that the brothers there were starting way behind the curve. If the engine stretched and held the stairs allowing the Rescue to make the search, how many really went to the third floor? Is there a possibility that the TIC contributed to the "missing" of a victim? We still haven't heard if the crews searched the bathroom initailly and missed her or completely missed the room. Reliance on the TIC can be dangerous. It wouldn't be hard to look through the TIC into a small bathroom and see nothing if the victim was in the tub and especially if it was a glass enclosure.

    I'll admit I thought the Acting Chief probably shouldn't have made the comments publicly, but they certainly may have not been trying to place blame, but introspective. Who knows sometimes its best to put it out there before someone else does.

  18. #18
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Posts
    32

    Default

    "RE33FFX maybe you could shed some light as to the staffing of the first due units?"

    Fairfax County Staffing is-

    Engine Companies- 4
    Truck Companies- 3
    Rescue Companies- 4

    All structural box alarms get 4 Engines, 2 Trucks, 1 Rescue and assorted BCs, EMS officers and Transport EMS units on the first alarm. In a lot of areas all of those resources arrive on scene fairly quickly and almost on top of each other. In other areas it is much more scattered. Not real familiar with 19's first due so I can't say how quickly units got on scene.

    One item I left out from before. The media had the information about the firefighters missing the victim and her being on the phone as they were arriving. Chief Rohr's interview was several days after the fire when the media was "seeking answers."

    Again I don't want to speak for any Fairfax County Firefighters and/or their department, I just wanted to respond to some of the comments regarding the current Interim Chief.

  19. #19
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    63

    Default

    Although a bit off the subject of strategy and tactics, when we talk to the media would it not be a little more professional to not have our hands in our pockets. I think that just looks bad in general and people take alot away from body language.

  20. #20
    MembersZone Subscriber
    MalahatTwo7's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Loco madidus effercio in rutilus effercio.
    Posts
    12,837

    Default

    I am a FX County EMT (volunteer) and while I am not able to comment on what happened at the fire in question - I wasn't there, I will back up a comment made by RE33FFX regarding Chief Rohr.

    Yes he is an interim Chief of Department, and from what I've heard about him through varying sources, is as RE33FFX states, a pretty good, stand up kind of guy. A lot of the folks in my stn like and respect him. And I've heard good things from other sources too.

    As for what happened with R419 and E419, that will just have to wait until the investigation is over, I guess. Was a sad day for everyone concerned in any case.
    If you don't do it RIGHT today, when will you have time to do it over? (Hall of Fame basketball player/coach John Wooden)

    "I may be slow, but my work is poor." Chief Dave Balding, MVFD

    "Its not Rocket Science. Just use a LITTLE imagination." (Me)

    Get it up. Get it on. Get it done!

    impossible solved cotidie. miracles postulo viginti - quattuor hora animadverto

    IACOJ member: Cheers, Play safe y'all.

  21. #21
    MembersZone Subscriber
    dday05's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    1,331

    Default

    First off my thoughts go ut to the victim of this incident and to all of our fellow firefighters involved as well.

    I don't think the acting chief is out of line with his statements. The chief seems to be concerned why the crew didn't find the victim. He says " we should've found her" and he wants to find out why they didn't. I feel by his actions he wants to try and figure out why the outcome came out this way and I would say that maybe he cares about this incident and try to fix what might have been the problem (if there was one). You know none of us were there and we really don't know to much of what really happened this night but Iwill say I would think the firefighters would've been tring there hardest to find and rescue the victim just like any of us would. We also know how the media likes to put a spin on things. Anymore I tell them no comment at this time and that equals less headaches for us.

  22. #22
    Forum Member
    RspctFrmCalgary's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Now in Victoria, BC. I'm from beautiful Jasper Alberta in the heart of the Can. Rockies - will always be an Albertan at heart!
    Posts
    6,329

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by medic563 View Post
    Although a bit off the subject of strategy and tactics, when we talk to the media would it not be a little more professional to not have our hands in our pockets. I think that just looks bad in general and people take alot away from body language.
    I agree, having your hands in your pockets while addressing the media doesn't portray a professional appearance, almost seems disrespectful.

    Your comment got me intrigued enough to google body language ... here are a interesting few bits & bites I found.

    Positive Attitudes. Positive attitudes indicated by body language may signal a sincere effort to achieve win/win results. Key indicators of positive attitudes are listed below.

    # Confidence is often exhibited by:

    * Hands in pockets with thumbs out;

    Negative Attitudes. Negative attitudes indicated by body language may signal a deceitful nature or a win/lose approach to negotiation. Common indicators of negative attitudes are listed below.

    # Insecurity is often exhibited by:

    * Hands completely in pocket;
    September 11th - Never Forget

    I respect firefighters and emergency workers worldwide. Thank you for what you do.

    Sheri
    IACOJ CRUSTY CONVENTION CHAIR
    Honorary Flatlander

    RAY WAS HERE FIRST

  23. #23

    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    3

    Default Fairfax

    I would like to know what issues fairfax has in suppression,, thats news to me but would love to hear what is being said

  24. #24
    MembersZone Subscriber
    CHIEF500's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Location
    Bristol, Pa.
    Posts
    27

    Default

    I feel bad for the family, the hard working members of the department and for the acting chief. He was asked questions about a tragic situation and he responded honestly. As the acting chief that’s his job. You don’t push that off to a PIO or ignore it. You need to deal with it and I think he did a very good job with the interview. It seems they are headed for litigation over the incident and no one involved will be discussing it for quite a while. Do any of you really think that women shouldn’t have been found before to a secondary search?
    Fire reported @ 01:00
    Subject talking with dispatcher @ 01:02
    FD Arrival @ 01:06
    Subject still talking with dispatcher laying on floor @ 01:08
    They lose contact and dispatch calls back at 01:11
    Companies report fire knocked down @ 01:35
    They are starting secondary search.

    That’s 29 minutes that they are on location, with a fire on the first floor, it seems like minimal extension. The exterior of the dwelling doesn’t seem severely smoked stained showing signs of very heavy smoke conditions.
    Should be an interesting read at some point.
    ex Chief 500

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. SOP's for Volunteer FD
    By rumlfire in forum Volunteer Forum
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: 08-01-2006, 10:35 PM
  2. One tough woman: WV, be proud!
    By EastKyFF in forum The Off Duty Forums
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: 04-09-2003, 08:52 PM
  3. Round 9 - Virginia
    By N2DFire in forum Federal FIRE ACT Grants & Funding
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 11-25-2002, 12:51 PM
  4. Virginia Situation
    By NJFFSA16 in forum Wildland Firefighting
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 07-11-2002, 11:25 PM
  5. Thermal Imaging SOG's
    By wtfd92 in forum Firefighters Forum
    Replies: 23
    Last Post: 06-27-2001, 08:41 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts

Log in

Click here to log in or register