Firefighter bites dog…

I’m sure one has some where at some time or another, I’m just not aware of it. I only used that title because Dave Statter was explaining to Rhett how a title such as this will / can draw readers. That said, I’m not even sure why I want / need to draw readers because I really don’t have a lot to say this morning.

I just got off duty and started a long break. Beyond our typical 4-day break, I also have vacation next cycle so I get a pretty good stretch off. The tour yesterday wasn’t too bad but we were up several times after midnight. That’s nothing compared to the shift Joe Schmoe pulled the other night but I have to tell ya…. the older I get, the harder it is to get up and down throughout the night (some old Jakes told me I’d get this way but I never understood or believed em). I got home this morning to find the Buckaroo waiting for his “Paw-Paw”. THAT MAKES IT ALL WORTH WHILE. I felt like a little rest (while working on this post) would be in order so he climbed into bed with me. I stole  borrowed a “tractor book” from the on coming Captain and fellow farmer Lynn Flora this morning and brought it home for the little fella. Other than Fire Rescue Magazine (and the occasional PlayBoy) Tractor House is his favorite. Here we are making this mornings post and reading one of his favorite mags….

See?? No fancy desk… no big office … This is where / how all the “magic” of this site happens LOL. The needing / wanting a little rest after a tour brings to mind a recient article over at Fire Geezer concerning all the BS going on over in London. Apparently Brian Coleman, Chairman of the London Fire Authority; wants the beds out of London’s firehouses. Here is an excerpt from the article…

The beds are being phased out as stations are modernised but the Evening Standard understands that senior fire authority figures are determined to use the shorter night shift to scrap them completely. One senior source said: “Do you know any other occupation where people are able to sleep on duty?”

Read the entire story HERE

 Ok, back to yesterday’s tour. We did have one interesting run. A single vehicle accident with no injuries. This little gal needs to get hired at a sewing factory or something because she really can “thread the needle”.

The remainder of the tour was really uneventful. Tried to stay warm and dry. A few visitors, a station tour and business as usual. Last night, I took the time to tune in to Firefighter Netcast for Chris Naum’s Taking it to the Streets. Last night’s topic was “Redefining the Fire ground” and is worth a listen. I didn’t call in because I was on duty but I did participate in the Chat room.

I agree with what Chris put forward last night but would add a few thoughts (as I did in the chat). Without a doubt, today’s fires are NOT like our Father’s (or those before us) fires. Building construction, fire loads, furnishing material etc continue to change and bring more and more hazards to our profession. That said, we can NOT fight today’s fires as we / they did 10, 15 or 20 years ago. They are two totally different animals. So, we need to change our thinking. Our strategies and tactics. We’re not talking reinventing the wheel here, just taking a new and different look at how we operate on these new and ever changing fire scenes.

That’s where Chris and I agree 100%. What I would add is that because of all the above, we now need to be more agressive than ever. SMART AND SAFELY AGRESSIVE. The tactical decision etc now MUST be made correctly and QUICKLY. We need to establish an action plan and put it into place as quickly as possible to stop these fires before they reach the point where we can do no good (or they kill firemen). The difference in today’s fires and one from 20 years ago is that today, we reach that point a lot quicker than before.

Make the right decisions (using the new tools now available) and put the plan into action as quickly as possible. Don’t give light weight construction, foam filled furniture etc the chance to grow and reach the fatal point for firefighters. It was also mentioned “what are we saving?” I know and understand “risk little to save a little, risk a lot to save a lot / life” but I would ask who puts the value on what we are saving. (This is me playing the Devil’s advocate” here). I have things (material things I know) that I place a high value on. Things handed down to me from my father. Memories of my children’s school years. Pictures of this or that. Things that could and can never be replaced. Are they worth a fireman’s life??? NO. But, I pay for fire service (through taxes.. not a pay for spray type of deal) and I expect a certain level of service in return. “To save lives and property”. Just because everyone is out of the house doesn’t mean your (our) job is done. Sometimes, the little bit of clothing etc we save is all that family has left… ALL. Think about public perception. How many videos are out here now with comintation from “john Q Public” saying the firemen are “doing nothing”? Our reply?? It’s dangerous. Material items are not worht the risk. Hummm. I wonder what they’ll think the next time we are asking for money for man power, equipment or God forbid a raise.  Train… educate yourselves, make smart, safe and quick decisions and get in there and do your job.

I could (and maybe should) go on for hours on this topic to better explain my position but I think (or hope) you get my point. I’m not talking about being “reckless” here. There’s a huge difference between aggressive and reckless but sometimes, that line is not so obvious. I’m advocating cautiously / educated aggressiveness.

Anyway, here’s a shot of my multi-puter setup for the show last night…

Notice all the “post-it” notes?? I think someone may be “fretting” just a little bit. To be honest, I’m a little shocked. Most people that have worked, with, for or around  know that I can tolerate a lot of things but “fretting” is NOT one of em. LOL. You see, the on coming Captain this morning (Lynn Flora) likes to use these “post-its” to pass along information to the opposite Captain. He leaves a note in case he forgets to pass something along by mouth. It kinda “tickles” me.. so I  errrrrr… someone made about 100 of em, detailing every little event of the day; and left (posted them) for Captain Flora this morning. LMAO! Don’t worry Capt. I’ll launch an investigation and we’ll find the little prankster!

Ok, rest time is up. The Buckaroo and I have to feed a few cows and haul a load or two of hay today. I hope you folks have an enjoyable day as well (or a safe one  for those pulling a tour). I have a few topics in mind for up coming post. Some local in nature and others not so much. For you local readers, I need to mention and say a few things about a past member, Captain Marci Stone; getting the Chief’s job out in Bedford County. We also have a retirement coming up next week. Keith “Meat” Blankinship will be leaving next cycle November 12th.

Speaking of retirement.. we will be putting on a “RETIREE’S BREAKFAST” this coming Tuesday November 9th. We will begin serving at 9am but I will start the cooking around 5am.  I NEED YOUR HELP. I need assistant cooks, dish washers, waiters, servers etc. If you’ve never been to one… you need to be there! Especially our younger members. It’s awe inspiring to sit and listen and watch our retirees tell the stories of their day. If you have ever wondered why we do something “this way or that” or why we call “this” by that name etc…. these are the men who know. They built the Department we work in. Check out Rhett’s coverage of past events here but more importantly, make plans to attend / help. Contact me in the comment section here, via e-mail or cell to sign up. Thanks in advance.

Thanks again for following. If you havent already, don’t forget to friend request me on “picture book”  (Willie Wines Jr.) so you can keep up with all the latest postings etc. Until the next one, stay safe and in house!

Captain Wines