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The Finest Supporting the Bravest!

The purpose of the Fire Mechanics Section is to promote standardization of fire apparatus and equipment preventative maintenance, improve safety standards and practices, promote workshops, conferences, and seminars related to the purposes of this Section, and to promote cost savings through standardization of building and equipment purchasing and maintenance.

RECENT FIRE MECHANIC NEWS

Posted: May 20, 2019

Indianapolis Blue Crew Needs Help After Fire Apparatus Breakdown

The Blue Crew is hoping to find someone who can rebuild the engine or replace it with a used one.  

“It’s actually harder than you would think to find a place to work on a 31-year-old diesel engine,” Perry Fiscus with the Blue Crew said in an email.

Fiscus said fixing the truck will likely cost thousands of dollars—maybe even more than the group originally paid for the truck.

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Posted: May 20, 2019

Historic Camden (SC) Fire Apparatus Witnessed Deadly Fire that Changed Country

 
On May 17th, 1923, the engine known as The Seagrave responded to the deadliest fire in South Carolina history. The Cleveland School fire.

A total of 77 people died in the fire that night, including 41 children, entire families and even the Kershaw County coroner. Every family in Camden was affected by the Cleveland School fire. Reports say the time the Seagrave arrived at the scene, it was too late. All that was left was rubble and ash.

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Posted: May 20, 2019

Out of My Mind: Workload vs. Quality Service

By Richard Marinucci

Recently, in Southeast Michigan, I have noticed many departments improving their Insurance Services Office (ISO) ratings. I think this is good news, but I wonder about the potential interpretations from the policymakers. I am not critical of any of the departments, but I think all of the ones I have seen are not what I would call well-staffed. I would think the reason for improvement would be in areas other than increases in staffing. What will be the fallout when policymakers, i.e. city managers, mayors, fire boards, and the like find out their ratings have decreased without improving staffing? I would guess that this can be used as an argument when increases are requested. Thinking like a politician, I would brag about the improvement and then limit increases in resources. If this is happening elsewhere, please let me know. I do commend those departments that have done what is necessary to work within the system.

Throughout this country you can see a big difference between the haves and the have nots with respect to a commitment to training. There are some departments that have great facilities and many resources to use to improve performance. They also are willing and able to send members outside their organization to learn and share. On the other end are departments that don’t have much with regard to facilities or funding. Some do their best with what they have while others may have taken the easy way out and don’t get very creative. In between are some departments who have some resources but for some reason skimp on training. I am not sure why this is. It would seem that in order to improve (or at least stay the same), you would have to invest. If you have funding and support and elect not to use it, what message does it send to the membership and community?

I recently had a chance to attend the Truman Fire Forum organized by the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. I send my most sincere thanks to Ron Siarnicki and company for inviting me to participate. It was a great event. Besides the actual forum, I had a chance to see a lot of old friends. There remains many in the fire service who continue their passion for improvement and work very hard not only in their own organizations but also raise their hands to help whenever asked. On the flip side, I did not see too many from the next generation. This is a challenge for many organizations in the fire service—getting folks to take up the work when the current generation can no longer do so. This may be a combination of a lack of interest by some and a failure of support from leadership. In one of my previous organizations, there were some great individuals with talent and interest in the service. From my understanding, their participation outside their own organization has been greatly curtailed. Having been there, I know it is not a financial issue. Obviously, it is a decision made by leadership. I think it is too bad as these future leaders are not getting the opportunities and therefore are not in a position to participate. I am guessing there are other departments doing the same thing, which limits the pool needed to pass the baton.

When does a department workload become too much to provide quality service? I ask this question because I heard a presentation by my friend Garry Briese asking this question. The premise is that the fire service has a hard time saying no when asked to take on new assignments. Departments get to the point where they cannot commit the time to prepare and maintain competence. It is related to add-ons such as EMS, hazmat, technical rescue, etc. that require more time. There is a point where it becomes extremely difficult, if not impossible, to train, study, and educate to the level needed to maintain core competence. This certainly is good food for thought. Are ther

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Posted: May 20, 2019

Integration of EMS and Hospital System Is Key to Ambulance Service Success

In March 2017, Memphis, Tennessee, based Baptist Memorial Health Care signed a master services agreement with Priority Ambulance for it to become the ambulance transport provider for the healthcare system. A few weeks later, Priority Ambulance had sent 10 ambulances and more than 60 employees to Baptist’s vice medical facilities in the greater Memphis area. A year into the relationship has yielded 31 vehicles and more than 300 ambulance employees providing medical transport to more than 30,000 patients per year. It also provides six communities with 9-1-1 service in Mississippi and West Tennessee.

The plan began in 2016, when the two organizations worked to define improvements for moving patients needing a higher level of care located at smaller regional locations across three states with the ultimate goal to delivery patient delivery at the right place at the right time, keeping patients as close to home as possible. A final goal was to improve patient flow efficiency through transportation. The two organizations achieved this by integrating Priority Ambulances dispatch center with Baptist’s bed management system/transfer center at the Patient Placement Center, which is staffed with experienced registered nurses that track the status and manage all 2,700 beds in the Baptist system. 

For more information on this integration, visit http://www.emsstrong.org/delivering-innovation-to-baptist/.

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Upcoming Events

Fire Mechanics Section Board

Chair

Posted: Oct 21, 2015

Chair

Elliot Courage
North Whatcom Fire & Rescue
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Vice Chair

Posted: Oct 21, 2015

Vice Chair

Mike Smith 
Pierce County Fire District #5
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Secretary

Posted: Oct 21, 2015

Secretary

Justin Claibourn
Central Pierce Fire & Rescue 
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Director #1

Posted: Oct 21, 2015

Director #1

Loren Angiono 
City of Lynnwood
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Director #2

Posted: Oct 21, 2015

Director #2

Paul Spencer 
Fire Fleet Maintenance LLC
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Director #3

Posted: Oct 21, 2015

Director #3

Larry Elliott
Olympia Fire Department
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Director #4

Posted: Oct 21, 2015

Director #4

Doug Jones
City of Redmond
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Director #6

Posted: Oct 21, 2015

Director #6

Brett Annear
Kitsap County Fire District 18
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Director #5

Posted: Oct 21, 2015

Director #5

Jay Jacks
Camano Island Fire & Rescue
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Legislative Representative

Posted: Oct 21, 2015

Legislative Representative

TBD
TBD
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Immediate Past Chair

Posted: Oct 20, 2015

Immediate Past Chair

Brian Fortner
Graham Fire & Rescue

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