Line of Duty

Quick takes

Medic unit overturns in Baltimore: Michael “FirePix1075” Schwartzberg’s video. Click here for his pictures. This is his description of last night’s crash- Two Baltimore City Fire Department EMS personnel were injured Wednesday, Oct 14 when their medic unit was involved in a collision downtown. BCFD Medic 23, using Reserve Medic 64, was headed westbound on Lexington Avenue shortly before 11 p.m. when it was involved in a collision with a Volvo passenger car at the St. Paul Street intersection. The medic unit skidded more than 120 feet and turned onto its driver’s side, with the crew able to self-extricate through the passenger side door. Several trees on the sidewalk were knocked over and the glass window of a nearby store was cracked as a result of the collision. The medic unit was towed to the city’s Biddle Street facility where personnel will evaluate the apparatus, however a BCFD staff member said the Ford F450 was likely totaled.

Programming note – gets a face lift: If all goes well there will be a new look to the blog this afternoon. There will now also be advertising on Remember the best way to access us is via Stay tuned.

NIOSH reports firefighter who died on rescue dive was drunk: You may recall the story we told you in August, 2008 when Tiverton, Rhode Island Firefighter Gerald Leduc died while scuba diving in an attempt to rescue a missing boater. NIOSH reports Leduc’s alcohol level was .25 and that he also had an underlying heart condition. Two firefighters urged him not to dive that day. Leduc had responded to the call during a day off. Click here to read the story. Watch the story. Read the NIOSH report.

NIOSH report on LODD of Dale City VFD’s Cecilia Turnbough: NIOSH echoes some of what we previously have heard from Prince William County, Virginia officials after Turnbough’s death last year in the maze during her training to become a firefighter. The major issues cited revolve around providing proper medical evaluations. Read the report. Firefighter Nation also has a summary.

No driver means destroyed home: The chief of the South Bay Fire Department in Cicero, New York says they are going to make changes after it took 20 minutes to get water on a house fire on September 18. Twelve minutes were lost because the department had six volunteers at the station but no driver. has a detailed article on how the call was handled, along with a timeline. Click here.

Pittsburgh firefighters have something to Crowe about: Russell Crowe that is. WTAE-TV reports the actor, who is in Pittsburgh filming a movie, had the van he was being filmed in with Elizabeth Banks hit by a fire truck. The station is showing a picture of Engine 32 on its website-

The fire truck was pulling out of the Deutschtown Fire Station at about 2 p.m. when it clipped and knocked the front end off a van parked in the street.

Crowe and his co-star, Elizabeth Banks, both emerged from the van unscathed. No one was injured in the accident. A worker at a local bar said everyone was laughing about it, and that Crowe waved back at her when she waved at him.

Man drives blazing vehicle past fire station: In Belle Vernon, Pennsylvania a man, believed by police to be drunk, rode past the firehouse with the engine of his van on fire. The firefighters soon got him to stop and dragged him out of the smoke filled vehicle. Click here to read and watch the story.

What’s in a name?: In San Bernardino the firefighters’ union and a group of the department’s commanders are on opposite sides of a city council race. The chiefs picked a name for its group that union officials think is too similar to theirs and will confuse voters. The union is planning to take the chiefs to court to try and get a name change. Click here.

Heated budget battle underway, chief puts in his papers: We have been keeping you informed of the proposal to cut staffing on ladder trucks and possibly close companies by Milwaukee Fire Department Chief Douglas Holton. When and if it happens, Holton won’t be around to see the results. Yesterday, Chief Holton announced his retirement to take a new job. Click here.

Estimated $45 million dollar settlement in Lousiville’s OT cases: This is another one we have been following. Details of the recent settlement to the 9-year battle were announced in a series of meetings with current firefighters and retirees. They all seem to have smiles on their faces. Read more.

$100,000 in department funds gone. Arrest made: That’s the story from the Briarcliffe Fire Company in Darby Township, PA (Delaware County). Read the details.

Diversity conference in Alexandria: The George Washington Masonic Memorial is the site today and tomorrow of the 2009 Virginia Equity-Diversity Conference. According to a press release, “The Equity-Diversity conference will be represented by Fire and Emergency Medical Services personnel from across the nation”. U.S. Fire Administrator Kelvin Cochran is listed as a panelist for a town hall meeting to discuss various issues. Click here to read more.

Helmet-cam takes you into the middle of this one: Credit to Firefighter Spot for finding this video. Posted on October 10 of a house fire handled by Miami Dade. Well worth watching. Part 2 is here.

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