National News

Monday, March 18, 2019

New Hampshire fire chief fires back on city’s Safe Station

The city’s fire chief is firing back after an alderman announced on social media over the weekend his intent to make a motion this week to shut down the Safe Station program. On Friday, Alderman at Large Joe Kelly Levasseur posted a message on his personal Facebook page, stating that 61 percent of those accessing Safe Stations in Manchester “are from somewhere else.” “When they don’t have any money and can’t afford to buy any drugs and are going through withdrawals, they simply show up at a Safe Station where they get an Uber to bring them to a local clinic which then houses them for at least a week — maybe more,” wrote Levasseur. “Once again we keep legislating for the fringe of our society at the cost of the middle class. I will be making a motion on Tuesday to stop allowing Safe Stations in Manchester.” “I have no intention of stopping the program,” Manchester Fire Chief Dan Goonan said on Sunday. “It’s helped too many people. I saw the Facebook post. It was as inaccurate as it was sad.”
Union Leader

Stretch of I-15 dedicated to fallen California firefighter Cory Iverson

A swath of Interstate 15 that runs through Escondido was dedicated Saturday in honor of Cory Iverson, a North County Cal Fire firefighter who died battling the Thomas Fire in 2017. “Corey Iverson is a hometown hero,” said California Assemblymember Marie Waldron, who started the effort to get the freeway naming approved by the Legislature. Dozens of Cal Fire firefighters, Caltrans officials and family and friends gathered for the unveiling of the large green signs that will designate the stretch between Rancho Via Parkway and state Route 78 as the “Cal Fire Firefighter Cory Iverson Memorial Highway.” “My hope is when drivers see this sign the memory of Cory will live on,” Waldron said during the gathering at the Del Lago Transit Station in Escondido.
The San Diego Union Tribune - Metered Site

Starting in April, all smoke alarms sold in New York must be tamper proof, last 10 years

Starting April 1, it will be illegal to sell smoke detectors with removable, replaceable batteries in New York state. The law was adopted in 2016 but it gave retailers three years to comply. The law requires that battery-powered smoke detectors sold in the state must come with batteries that last at least 10 years and cannot be removed. Lawmakers said the mandate aims to reduce the number of people hurt or killed in fires. Syracuse Fire Chief Michael Monds said the law will be great for residents. “Once you put this 10-year smoke detector up, it’s going to be there for 10 years,” he said. “When you’re sleeping, it’s ready to work.” Over half of the deadly fires in the United States between 2012 and 2016 happened in homes that didn’t have smoke alarms or had detectors that weren’t working, according to the National Fire Protection Association. Many of the homes had detectors with disconnected or missing batteries.

Michigan fire department challenges other departments to provide safety kits

Lieutenant Barry Narrin has a challenge for area fire departments. Narrin’s part of the Otter Lake Fire Dept., and he and his fellow volunteers will be spending their free time installing fire safety kits in 36 homes in the Otter Lake area, completely free for both the homeowners and the department itself. Narrin said he wants to see other Lapeer County departments take up the challenge as well. Earlier this year, Narrin and Otter Lake Fire Dept. Chief Mike Harvey attend- ed a conference hosted by Michigan State Fire Marshal Kevin Sehlmeyer, who issued the challenge to all state fire departments to accept and distribute 36 fire safety kits. Each kit contains five smoke detectors and one carbon monoxide detector, and are required to be installed by an acting firefighter, said Narrin. “We said, ‘yeah, we can definitely do this,” Narrin said.
Lapeer County Press

Texas: Photo of firefighter carrying elderly woman up stairs captures hearts

Firefighter Thomas Harwell says it's always been in his blood to help people, and not just when he's on the clock. He, his wife Shayla and their 2-year-old daughter were at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo featuring Brad Paisley Saturday when they saw an elderly woman struggling to get down the stairs of the stadium with her daughter and two granddaughters. "She was having a rough time," Shayla Harwell told CNN Sunday night. "I nudged my husband and told him that they may need help." Thomas Harwell helped the woman down the stairs, but he and his wife kept an eye on the family until the show ended. They knew the woman would need to come back up the stairs in order to exit the stadium. "I helped her downstairs, and I wasn't going to leave until I helped her upstairs," Thomas Harwell said. He asked the woman if he could pick her up, and while hesitant at first, she agreed. Shayla Harwell took a picture of her husband carrying the elderly woman up the stairs and posted it to Facebook. The picture has since gone viral with over 1,000 shares and 700 comments.

Friday, March 15, 2019

Repairs to Ohio Fire Fighters Memorial completed in time for St. Patrick’s Day ceremony

A crane hoisted two heroic figures back into place on the Cleveland Fire Fighters Memorial Tuesday morning, completing restoration of the colorful fiberglass sculpture honoring Cleveland firefighters killed in the line of duty. The memorial, which was installed in 2007 on Erieside Avenue, outside FirstEnergy Stadium and the Great Lakers Science Center, will be rededicated at 12:30 p.m. Sunday to start the annual St. Patrick’s Day memorial hosted by the Cleveland Firefighters Shamrock Club. The $50,000 restoration project repaired cracks in the sculpture designed by the late artist Luis Jimenez. The campaign was launched in mid-2017 with a $10,000 donation from businessman and philanthropist Sam Miller, the longtime co-chairman of Forest City Enterprises Inc. The base of the memorial includes the names of 77 firefighters killed or fatally injured in the line of duty since 1869.

Indiana department hires first full-time female firefighter in its 132-year history

VIDEO: The Batesville Fire and EMS Department, established in 1887, hired its first full-time female firefighter — the first in the department’s history. Several women have worked as part-time EMTs or volunteer firefighters, according to a news release, but Lisa Jennings will be first to serve as a full-time firefighter/paramedic. She was sworn in by Batesville Mayor Mike Bettice Monday. “I am really excited to have the opportunity to utilize the education I obtained in fire school in addition to my paramedic background,” Jennings said. Jennings graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 2017 and earned the State of Indiana Firefighter certification in 2018. She was previously an EMT/paramedic in Ripley County and is a member of the UC Health Air Care and Mobile Care Special Events Team in Cincinnati. Jennings is a Bright resident and mother of four children.
WCPO Cincinnati

No SAFER grant for Wisconsin fire department

The Village Board on Tuesday denied a request from the Caledonia Fire Department to apply for a grant that potentially could have helped fund the addition of six firefighters to its staff. Instead of authorizing the department’s application for a federal Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response — or SAFER — grant, the village trustees agreed to create an ad hoc committee to look into various options for financing and staffing at the department. The committee would plan to make recommendations for the 2020 village budgeting process. The department has 39 firefighters, and department leaders would like to eventually add 18 more. The department never has the 15 firefighters on duty to respond to a structure fire, per National Fire Protection Association standards, and must rely on neighboring departments for help in those instances. Fire Chief Richard Roeder and Battalion Chief Jeff Henningfeld requested approval to apply for the grant during a March 4 meeting, but were asked to come back on Tuesday with more information on the cost of the new hires to the village.
Journal Times

Maryland county gets first ever female fire chief and police chief

VIDEO: Together, they are making history in Howard County: Lisa Myers, the county’s first female police chief, and Christine Uhlhorn, the first female fire chief. ABC7 recently spoke to the two women about what it took to break the glass ceiling. "It's an amazing opportunity," Myers said. "I think we both realize it's much larger than who we are." Both Myers and Uhlhorn spent nearly 30 years working their way up the ranks in Howard County. "I started the academy in Howard County in 1989," said Uhlhorn, who is a third-generation firefighter. "My father was a firefighter. My grandfather. We have over 250 years in the fire service combined." So for Uhlhorn, being a firefighter was the only career she ever considered. And she says her family members always encouraged her to follow that dream. "At that point there were no women in the fire service, nationally," she said. "But they never said that's not something you can do. They said work hard and believe in yourself, and you can be anything that you want."

‘Purely politics’: South Carolina town council reverses decision to hire first paid fire chief

VIDEO: Clover isn’t bringing on a new paid chief after all. A lengthy Clover Town Council executive session Monday night led to a reversal of course on hiring a new chief. “At last night’s meeting, the town council voted to change the policy directive with regard to the hiring of paid personnel at the Clover Fire Department,” said Allison Harvey, town administrator. “Specifically, the vote was to amend the funding allocation such that there would only be funds to hire two paid firefighters, not a firefighter and a chief.” Mayor Greg Holmes said he was disappointed with the decision. By a 4-3 vote, Council decided instead to hire two paid firefighters rather than a chief and a firefighter. Many in the Clover community, including firefighters, were upset when Charlie Love wasn’t picked as the first paid chief after more than a decade as the volunteer chief. Volunteers talked about quitting, and county leaders discussed how to keep the area covered.
The Herald

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