Illinois News

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Madison: Solar Systems Challenge Firefighters

Solar panels are everywhere, from tiny squares powering roadside signs to rooftops shining with panels harvesting sunlight for electricity — but they are presenting new challenges for firefighters. One of the first things a firefighter does in a structure fire is cut the power for safety. But how do you do that when the power isn’t coming from the utility grid? How do firefighters ventilate a roof when it’s covered in solar panels without electrocuting themselves? Is it safe for a firefighter in full gear to step on a solar panel? (The answer is no, according to Fire Rescue Magazine.) These questions pose a problem for modern firefighters and are some of the reasons the Madison Fire Department applied for grants to install solar photovoltaic panels at their station. Madison has received two grants totaling nearly $270,000 to install 236 solar panels, which are expected to produce more than 105,000 kWh of energy per year. That’s the emissions equivalent of nine homes.
Belleville News-Democrat

Springfield Police, Firefighters Look Into Potential Layoffs

Mayor Jim Langfelder has asked city department heads, including the police and fire departments, to look into potential cuts in case the city can't solve its financial issues. City leaders estimate these cuts would result in about 10 police officers and 18 firefighters being laid off. Mayor Jim Langfelder says that would be a worst-case scenario that he and aldermen are working to avoid at all costs. Springfield firefighters’ union president Gary Self says public safety officers are very concerned after the city asked them to look into potential cuts.
WICS-TV Springfield ABC Channel 20

Four Hospitalized Due To Carbon Monoxide In Naperville

Paramedics responded to a family complaining they felt ill and discovered an increased level of carbon monoxide late Saturday at a home in west suburban Naperville. About 9 p.m., a person called 911 to report multiple family members feeling sick at the home in the 1000 block of Bradford Drive, according to a statement from the Naperville Fire Department. They were advised to wait outside the building as firefighters and paramedics were dispatched. Six minutes later, firefighters detected an increase in carbon monoxide levels, authorities said. The incident was elevated to an ambulance box alarm, bringing four additional ambulances and two commanders to the home.
CBS Chicago

Chicago: Firefighter Among 3 Injured in Fernwood House Blaze

A firefighter was among three people injured in a blaze late Sunday in a Fernwood neighborhood home on the Far South Side. Firefighters responded about 11 p.m. to the single-family home near West 101st and South LaSalle streets, according to Chicago Fire Department Cmdr. Walter Schroeder. The firefighter was taken in good condition to Mercy Hospital, Schroeder said. Two other adults were also injured in the blaze and taken to Roseland Community Hospital, one in fair-to-serious condition and the other listed in good condition.
NBC Chicago

Fire In Westmont Leaves 20 Apartments Uninhabitable

About 20 apartments were left uninhabitable Monday night, after a fire broke out in Westmont. The fire started around 9 p.m. at an apartment building near 60th Street and Cass Avenue. A resident called 911, saying an apartment was filling with smoke. By the time the first firefighters arrived, the four people living in that apartment had fled to their balcony to escape the heavy smoke and flames. Firefighters used ladders to rescue them. The fire was contained to a single upper-level unit. Everyone living in the 20-unit building was evacuated, but due to the quick actions of the firefighters, no one was injured.
CBS Chicago

Friday, February 17, 2017

Johnston City fire chief honored for three decades of service

Johnston City officials honored Fire Chief Tom Burton for his 30 years of service to the city. Chief Burton began working with the department in 1980, at the age of 16. He gained a full-time position in 1987. Chief Burton says he enjoys his job and has no intention of slowing down. "It's been great. When they gave me the plaque, I told them I'd like to serve another 30 if possible, because I still really enjoy what I'm doing. I love helping out the people of Johnston City," said Burton.

Proposed partnerships aims to keep local talent at Rockford’s Fire & Police Departments

From walking the halls of RPS 205, to protecting the streets of Rockford. Alignment Rockford wants to collaborate with the city's fire and police department's to create a talent pipeline. "Ultimately we want our students from Rockford Public Schools to get great jobs in our police force and fire department," says Alignment Rockford Executive Director Bridget French. "A local workforce, a diverse workforce, we need more minorities, more women in these fields." She says they'll do it through creating a task force focused on implementing curriculum as early as elementary school all the way through college.
WREX-TV NBC 13 Rockford

Alton Fire Department rolls out first ambulance service

The Alton Fire Department has rolled out it’s first ambulance service. For the last 32 years, Chief Bernie Sebold says firefighters have been trained as paramedics, but they didn’t have an ambulance. The chief says since 1985 firefighters who were EMS trained responded to medical emergencies in fire truck, so the new ambulance vehicles allows them to be have all the medical equipment including stretchers, narcotics, and medical machines inside the ambulance. “When the 911 call is received and our ambulance is available - it is the ambulance that is first dispatched,” said chief Sebold. “In the event that a subsequent ambulance call comes in and out ambulance is already on a call, then the other private company ambulances are dispatched, depending on which side of the city it’s on.”

Attic fire displaces family in Spring Valley

An attic fire displaced a family from their home in Spring Valley. Around 11 a.m. Spring Valley fire department responded to a fire call at 114 E. Cleveland Street, where smoke was coming from the house. Spring Valley fire chief Todd Bogatitus said flames were showing upon arrival. An attic fire displaced a family from their home in Spring Valley. Around 11 a.m. Spring Valley fire department responded to a fire call at 114 E. Cleveland Street, where smoke was coming from the house. Spring Valley fire chief Todd Bogatitus said flames were showing upon arrival.
News Tribune (North Central Illinois)

South Elgin fire officials prepare for bridge work

The South Elgin and Countryside Fire Protection District has arranged for other districts to help handle fires and ambulance calls over the next six months while two bridges are removed and replaced. Fire Chief Bill Sohn said after a recent fire board meeting that about 700 homes in the district are west of the McDonald Road bridge over Otter Creek, which will be closed March 2 through mid-September. Because it will take South Elgin firefighters and paramedics longer to reach those homes, plans are in the works for Elgin, Fox Valley and Pingree Grove fire districts to help out, he said. Elgin Fire Chief David Schmidt ran numbers for him to determine which departments would reach those homes first, Sohn said. In some cases, South Elgin still would probably reach the residences first, according to the data.
Chicago Tribune - Metered Site

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