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Quick Takes

Helmet-cam and other cameras from Western Maryland house fire:  This video is from the Potomac Fire Company in Westernport. It is of a house fire just before 9:00 last Wednesday morning. There is a detailed account along with pictures at the fire company’s website.

Helmet-cams like the one above are under the microscope: Paul Peluso at Firehouse.com looks at what I have long thought is an interesting issue being dealt with by fire departments all over the world. The debate focuses on helmet-cams, but the problems are similar for any picture taking by on-duty personnel. Paul talks with a public safety director who has a law degree. Click here for Paul’s story.

Finally, some details from Bourne. The firefighters' union provides details of what they say were major concerns about Lt. Kelli Weeks' behavior and the failure by Bourne, Massachusetts officials to properly investigate the matter. This picture of Weeks is from a charity calendar. No details yet on the rape charges against Weeks' husband, Deputy Chief Paul Weeks. Click the image for the latest.

Finally, some details from Bourne. The firefighters' union provides details of what they say were major concerns about Lt. Kelli Weeks' behavior and the failure by Bourne, Massachusetts officials to properly investigate the matter. This picture of Weeks is from a charity calendar. No details yet on the rape charges against Weeks' husband, Deputy Chief Paul Weeks. Click the image for the latest.

The Firehouse.com story mentions the helmet-cam rescue video taken at an apartment fire  by Kentland VFD. After Kentland contacted me and 9NEWS NOW ran the story (so did other TV stations), it brought an immediate ban on helmet-cams in Prince George’s County, Maryland (but not a ban on other picture & video taking). That fire occurred on August 8, 2006 and it also brought a sharp rebuke of Kentland and the news media by then PGFD Chief Lawrence Sedgwick Jr. It read in part, “The release of this video and the media coverage demonstrated a lack of compassion and sensitivity for the family of the deceased. These actions are extremely unethical and unprofessional.” 

For our previous coverage of the helmet-cam issue click here, here,  here, here and here.

A look back to a tragic and chaotic 14-hours: This execution of DC area sniper John Allen Muhammad is scheduled for tonight in Virginia. The region and the nation became aware of this series of killings because of what happened in Montgomery County, Maryland on October 2 and 3, 2003. Five people were shot and killed in separate incidents. 9NEWS NOW executive producer Samara Martin Ewing put together the 911 calls and her 2003 interviews with firefighters and medics. That and more about the snipers can be found here.

Punishment for deputy chief and captain in cheating case: Remember the story we told you about from Papillion, Nebraska where cheating was uncovered in the test for fire department applicants. It is costing Papillion about $25,000 to administer a brand new test. It is also costing two firefighters their rank.  While it was previously reported this was an inside job, there is now new information that a deputy chief and a captain have both been busted back to Firefighter I. Read and watch the details.

Tragic situation in Fairfax County, VA: Retired Captain Richard Scott and his wife were found dead in their home in what is believed by police to be a murder-suicide. Neighbors and firefighters say Scott, who retired in 1996, suffered from Alzheimer’s. Click here for the story.

Firefighter trapped & burned during 3-alarm NH building fire: According to Firefighter Close Calls one firefighter was burned and others injured during a fire last night at Mow Town Power Equipment in Hooksett, New Hampshire. The building houses lawn mowers and other garden equipment. Here’s some of the details-

The Firefighter was treated in Manchester and is now being transported to Boston with 2nd and 3rd degree burn related injuries after a garage door came down and trapped him during the fire. The Firefighter was reported to be fully geared up in his PPE and other Firefighters were able to get him out by cutting open the door.

 WMUR-TV reports 3 firefighters were hurt and has video and still pictures from the fire.

First due at Area 51 (sort of … after Nellis AFB FD): Well they might be if people in unincorporated  Rachel, Nevada could solve the dilemma that has cropped up with the June, 2008 donation of a 1986 Pierce pumper. They would like to put it in a county building as the start of a Rachel VFD. But Lincoln County won’t let them use it as long as the fire engine is still in private hands. Quite a problem for the closest habitation to the mysterious Area 51. Read more.

Another fire truck donation story: This one’s a 1918 Mack and is heading for the Sioux City Public Museum. Click here for the story.

Can do attitude: Actually it should be the “can” dos and don’ts. That’s the topic of Ray McCormack’s latest at thehousewatch.com.

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