Hawaii News

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Column: Key steps to performing field evaluations for PPE

Purchasing the right personal protective equipment for your firefighters is one of the more crucial and complex processes that a chief officer undertakes. However, that purchasing decision can be made more effective and efficient using an objective field evaluation. Here are the key steps to performing fit and field evaluations before you buy your gear. Field tests can vary, but they should have the same goal: selecting PPE for purchase with a high degree of confidence that firefighters will be satisfied wearing it. Two of the more common field tests include: Assigning PPE for evaluation to line firefighters to wear during their normal tours of duty for a designated period. Bringing groups of firefighters together in a non-operational environment (e.g., at a fire training facility) and having them engage in a series of firefighting tasks while wearing the PPE being evaluated.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Hawaii County Fire Department Has Council Review

VIDEO: The Hawaii County Fire Department, led by Chief Darren Rosario, went before the Hawaii County Council Finance Committee for an annual review as the council considers approving a budget for the upcoming fiscal year. In public testimony before the council, Robert Becker, the chair of the Hawaii County Fire Commission, summarized the challenges and needs of the fire department. “During the period from 2010 to 2017, the county population increased by 8.3% percent,” Becker said. “The department’s emergency call volume increased 20.6% percent. During this time, salary increases mandated by collective bargaining agreements have been included in available funding, although the related associated costs for contract-required over time has not been matched, resulting in an overall lowering of actual funds available for salary. Funding for non-salary cost has also decreased significantly over this 2010 to 2017 period.”
Big Island Video News

Kua Bay Lifeguard Bill Dead, But Hope Still Alive

VIDEO: Once again, a bill that would have brought lifeguards to the popular, and sometimes dangerous, Kua Bay in Kailua-Kona has died at the State Legislature. House Bill 2044 HD1 SD1, which would have appropriated funds “to establish four full-time equivalent (4.0 FTE) state ocean safety officers at Manini‘owali Beach at Kua Bay in the Kekaha Kai State Park and to purchase ocean safety officer equipment,” was passed through the House, and even given a positive recommendation by the Senate Committee on Water and land, before it stalled in the Senate Ways and Means Committee. “Every year we submit something, we go through the process, we go lobby, and it ends up dying,” said a frustrated Councilman Dru Kanuha during a recent council finance committee meeting. “I’m gonna jump on my soapbox,” said Fire Chief Darren Rosario at the same finance committee meeting, “and say that’s what the TAT (Transient Accommodations Tax) was intended for. It’s (Hawaii) County people providing protection at a state asset, so the state needs to step up and give us the money.”
Big Island Video News

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