Krichbaum Appointed NFFF Managing Director
The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF) named Gary Krichbaum managing director.
Krichbaum has 34 years of experience in fire, rescue and EMS. He entered the fire service in 1989. He retired as an assistant fire chief for the Prince George’s County, MD, Fire/EMS Department in 2020. Most recently, he served as the program manager for First Responder Center for Excellence, where he was responsible for the coordination and resources for a variety of firefighter support programs that are related to cancer prevention, behavioral health, cardiac health, and overall health and wellness.
Krichbaum currently serves as the Maryland Director for the Eastern Division International Association of Fire Chiefs and as the deputy incident commander for the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weekend. He has been a contributing member of multiple NFPA committees and an author for Firehouse Magazine.
For more information, go to firehero.org.
New FRCE & FDSOA Cancer-Awareness Effort
First Responder Center for Excellence (FRCE) and the Fire Department Safety Officers Association (FDSOA) are reminding firefighters and organizations to take every possible preventative step to reduce their exposure to carcinogens through FRCE and FDSOA’s joint Firefighter Cancer Prevention Pledge. The two organizations believe that firefighters who take the pledge not only will protect themselves but also send a message of commitment to their well-being, their family and the community that they serve. By uniting behind this cause, FRCE and FDSOA aim to “protect those who risk their lives to protect our communities.”
To take the pledge, go to firstrespondercenter.org/resource-hub/cancer.
NVFC, Others Urge Reauthorization of AFG and SAFER Programs
The National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) joined the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF), the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF) and 39 fire service officials in urging the reauthorization of the Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) and the Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) programs. The organizations and members stated their position to Congress on Oct. 12. If the programs are allowed to sunset on Sept. 30, 2024, the capability of the nation’s fire and emergency services to protect communities will be detrimentally affected, the group stressed. NVFC interim CEO Kevin Quinn noted that the programs are particularly important to volunteer fire departments.
For more information, go to cfsi.org/support-afg-safer-and-usfa-take-action-now.
Non-Fire Service Member Is Home Fire Sprinkler Advocate Award Winner
Kyle Kittrell, who is a civil engineer for the Missouri Department of Transportation, is the 2023 Bringing Safety Home Award recipient. He is the first winner of the award who isn’t a member of the fire service.
After having the opportunity to experience a live fire and sprinkler demonstration and seeing how effectively a sprinkler controlled the fire, Kittrell crusaded for sprinkler usage in Habitat for Humanity and Transformation Housing homes.
The Bringing Safety Home Award is presented by the National Fire Protection Association Fire Sprinkler Initiative and the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition.
Go to firesprinklerinitiative.org for info about efforts to require home fire sprinklers.
Vector Solutions Tool Connects Training and Certification
The introduction of AgencyConnect, from Vector Solutions, provides a data-sharing solution that connects local departments’ training management systems to those that are used by state certifying authorities and training academies. As such, it establishes a single repository for first responder preparedness and documentation.
Vector Solutions says no inherent connection between the systems that state standards and training/
certifying bodies utilize and the software and paper processes that are used by local personnel existed until the development of AgencyConnect.
Georgia Firefighter Standards and Training Council, Missouri Division of Fire Safety, New Mexico Firefighters Training Academy, and Utah Peace Officer Standards and Training are AgencyConnect founding partners.
For more, go to info.vectorsolutions.com/fire-agencyconnect-watch-demo.
Study: Discrepancies in Firefighter Decon Practices
Many firefighters don’t document and/or perform decontamination on scene following their exposure to fire products. This is the finding of an analysis of data from one of the largest databases in the United States that was conducted by ESO.
Based on information that was provided by at least 2,500 firefighters who were involved in an incident with exposure to smoke or combustion products between Jan. 1, 2021, and Dec. 31, 2021, ESO Senior Director of Fire Programs Bill Gardner says almost one in five exposed firefighters have no decontamination procedures documented.
Among the key findings: The odds of documenting any decon procedures were significantly lower for firefighters who respond to rural area fires compared with those who work in urban areas; and 10 percent of firefighters placed their bagged gear in the cab following exposure during a fire incident, which is a practice that was identified to be avoided by the Lavender Ribbon Report.
To request the research: eso.com/data-and-research.
Pritchett Received Glatfelter Distinguished Service Award
The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF) recognized Vickie Pritchett as the newest recipient of its Arthur J. Glatfelter Distinguished Service Award. Pritchett serves as the vice president/executive officer of the National Fire Sprinkler Association. She is a long-time advocate for safety throughout the fire service, in general, and for NFFF, in particular. Pritchett is a key component of NFFF’s national leadership efforts and strategic grassroots programming.
The Arthur J. Glatfelter Distinguished Service Award recognizes exceptional service to the NFFF by people who continue in support of Glatfelter’s legacy as a champion of the fire service. Glatfelter created the Volunteer Fireman’s Insurance Services (VFIS) to meet the insurance needs of volunteer firefighters and served for many years on NFFF’s board of directors.
For further details, see tinyurl.com/vickiepritchett.
9 U.S. firefighters died in the line of duty. Two died from injuries that were sustained during fireground operations, one died in a single-vehicle accident while en route to the scene of a fire, one died in a single-vehicle motor vehicle accident while en route to the firehouse for a call, one died in a multivehicle accident while en route to the scene of a fire, one died after suffering a medical emergency on scene of a traffic incident, one died after suffering a medical emergency at a training exercise, one died after suffering an on-duty medical emergency and one died from a health-related incident. This issue of Firehouse is dedicated to these firefighters.
FIREFIGHTER TROY THOMPSON, 46, of the Seven Springs, NC, Volunteer Fire Department, died on Oct. 4. Thompson was at the scene of a motor vehicle accident when he suffered a medical emergency. He immediately was transported to UNC Health Wayne, where he died a short time later.
BATTALION CHIEF EARL DYER JR., 65, of the Richmond, VA, Fire Department, died on Oct. 5. Dyer suffered a medical emergency while he worked his shift. He was transported to the hospital, where he was pronounced deceased a short time later.
FIREFIGHTER CANDIDATE ALEXANDER GRIFFIN, 32, died on Oct. 10. Griffin was training at FDNY’S Fire Academy at Randall’s Island for his required ability qualification certification to be offered a spot in the new academy class when he experienced an undetermined medical episode. He received intermediate medical care and was transported to Metropolitan Hospital, where he died.
CHIEF TIMOTHY “TJ” JOHNSON, 56, of the Pleasant Volunteer Fire Department in Warren, PA, died on Oct. 17. On Oct. 16, Johnson responded to an EMS call at a residence. After returning to the station, he said that he felt ill. He went home. Shortly after, 9-1-1 was called. Johnson was transported to the hospital, where he passed away the next day from an apparent heart attack.
FIREFIGHTER/EMT RODNEY PITTS III, 31, and LT. DILLON RINALDO, of the Baltimore City Fire Department, died from injuries that they sustained when they and three other firefighters were inside of one of multiple rowhomes that were on fire on Oct. 19. The five firefighters became overwhelmed by smoke and fire. All of them were rushed to the hospital. Pitts died on Oct. 19. Rinaldo died on Oct. 24. Rinaldo’s age couldn’t be confirmed as of press time. The cause of the fire was determined to be arson.
FIREFIGHTER CAMERON CRAIG, 20, of the Abingdon, VA, Fire Department, died on Oct. 19. Craig died while responding to a fire alarm call when the apparatus in which he was riding ran off of the road, struck a utility pole and overturned down an embankment. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
FIREFIGHTER COLIN REEDY, 25, of the West Whiteland Fire Company in Exton, PA, died on Oct. 20. Reedy was responding to the firehouse in a heavy downpour in his personal vehicle with another firefighter when the vehicle left the roadway and struck a tree. Reedy was pronounced dead at the scene. The other firefighter was transported to the hospital and was in critical but stable condition as of press time.
FIREFIGHTER ANTHONY “TONY” HOFFMAN, 43, of the Ionia, IA, Volunteer Fire Department, died on Oct. 22. Hoffman was operating the department’s UTV. He and another department apparatus responded to a field fire. The two department vehicles tried to pass a tractor when Hoffman’s vehicle was struck and rolled over. He was ejected from the vehicle. Hoffman was airlifted to Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, where he died of his injuries.