A publication of the North Carolina Department of Insurance Office of State Fire Marshal Fall 2010 Capital City Hosts Annual Conference GET ENGAGED Approximately 2,500 fire and rescue service personnel converged on Raleigh this August to “Get Engaged” – the theme of this year’s Annual Conference presented by the North Carolina State Firemen’s Association and North Carolina Association of Fire Chiefs. “We want you to get involved. If you’re not active and participating and taking advantage of all that’s available to you, you’re missing out,” said Paul Miller, executive director of NCSFA. “Learn what you can, take it home, keep your communities safe, and keep each other safe,” added Raleigh Fire Chief John McGrath. North Carolina firefighters have traveled to statewide gatherings for more than 140 years to share ideas and build skills. Today the Annual Conference has grown to a four-day event with speakers and training sessions, as well as a memorial service, fire truck parade, golf tournament and other activities. For the second year, the conference was held at the Raleigh Convention Center. The convention center’s 150,000 square foot exhibition hall housed the South Atlantic Fire Rescue Expo, which showcased fire-rescue vendors and equipment and drew attendees from a number of neighboring states. The expo presents an opportunity for fire and rescue personnel to one-stopshop for the latest in fire apparatus and emergency equipment. During his speech at the conference’s opening ceremony, Insurance Commissioner and State Fire Marshal Wayne Goodwin remarked that in these times of budget shortfalls, the Office of State Fire Marshal is fortunate to still be able to provide fire and rescue grants to help departments purchase equipment. “It’s a blessing,” Commissioner Goodwin said. “We have been able to work together as a team to preserve the fire grant funds so that we can help our departments, and each and every one of you, have the tools you need, the supplies you need and the equipment you need to be safe in what you do and efficient in what you do.” EMERGENCY! It might seem strange to some that the keynote speaker at this year’s conference is not a firefighter. But he did play one on TV. “I can’t stand up here and say firefighting is in my blood,” Randolph Mantooth told a standing-room-only crowd. “But I can tell you this, it sure got under my skin.” Mantooth is better known by the character name Johnny Gage – the Los Angeles firefighter and paramedic he played from 1972-1979 on the hit NBC show “Emergency!” The series, and subsequent made-for-TV movies, showed Gage and his partner Roy DeSoto (played by Kevin Tighe) rescuing people, providing emergency medical services and coordinating with emergency room doctors and nurses to save lives. continued on page 6... (Top) Leanne Greco, Regional Director of the Muscular Dystrophy Association, presents Chief James “Jimbo” Peele III of the Williamston Fire Department with the MDA Champion of Hope Award. (Center) Commissioner Goodwin and actor Randolph Mantooth from the 1970s hit TV series “Emergency!” (Bottom) The South Atlantic Fire Rescue Expo drew vendors, agencies and fire and rescue personnel for a one-stop-shop of the latest fire and rescue emergency equipment. What’s Hot Inside N.C. Building Code................................................................ 3...............Lincolnton Fire Department Bicycle Response Team Guilford County’s New Station............................................ 4-5.............................. Burlington Fire Department Wins Award Live Fire Training................................................................ 6-7.................................Reidsville Rescue Celebrates 50 Years Training Innovations..........................................................10-11.............................. Western Piedmont CC Training Center The Fire & Rescue Journal From the Commissioner’s Desk Prevention Efforts Span the State by Insurance Commissioner and State Fire Marshal Wayne Goodwin W hen many people think of the fire and rescue service, what comes to mind is the response aspect of the work – reacting to emergencies, putting out fires or saving lives that are in danger. However, I know responding to situations is only part of the job you do. The effort you put into fire and injury prevention and education is also important. Unlike members of a money-making corporation, you’re not trying to drum up more business; your educational outreach has prevented untold numbers of accidents and tragedies. That is something for which I am incredibly grateful. There is a long-standing tradition of public outreach during Fire Prevention Week. This year, nearly 400 agencies and individuals ordered free educational activity sheets through the Office of State Fire Marshal website to use in classrooms or at events. OSFM was also fortunate to be able to include in each package a free DVD of a fire prevention video presented by the North Carolina Jaycee Burn Center and produced by the Chapel Hill Fire Department and Chapel Hill Museum. These entities invested the time, money and creativity to make this video a valuable teaching tool, and they were happy to allow us to share it with you to use. I traveled to Shelby on Oct. 6 to help promote Fire Prevention Week and Family Fire Drill Day at the Cleveland County Fair. There, Safe Kids Cleveland County volunteers and the Cleveland HealthCare Foundation challenged kids to “Be a Fire Buster” at their safe house exhibit. That day members of the Shelby Fire Department were on hand to help teach the children how to spot the fire hazards in five different room set-ups and practice escaping the house. You could see the kindergarteners’ faces light up when the firefighters worked with them to identify fire dangers. Also, this September, during Campus Fire Safety Month, I was pleased to be invited along as firefighters from the City of Raleigh and student volunteers from Shaw University and North Carolina State University teamed up to canvass neighborhoods to promote fire safety. Together, these fire professionals and young adults went door-to-door and installed alarms provided by OSFM in the homes that needed them. It was a valuable and informative service in one of Raleigh’s busiest fire districts, but more importantly, we hope the college students involved become fire safe citizens for life. These are just a few examples of outreach initiatives I have witnessed recently that involved the cooperation of fire and rescue personnel, community members and schools — I know there are many more going on across the state. The need for fire safety and injury prevention outreach is not limited to one week or one month, one age group or demographic. It is when we can all work together, sharing resources and ideas, that we can make the most difference. Your effort does not go unnoticed, and I thank you for your continued service. Students from Shaw and North Carolina State Universities joined City of Raleigh firefighters to provide smoke alarms to homes that needed them. Wayne Goodwin, Insurance Commissioner & State Fire Marshal Mark Edwards, Assistant Commissioner Tim Bradley, Assistant State Fire Marshal Executive Editor Kristin Milam, Director of Public Information Managing Editor Chris Best, Supervisor, Research and Program Development Associate Editor Kerry Hall, Assistant Director of Public Information Editorial Assistant Karen Holder Graphic Designer Trisha Tripp 2 The Fire & Rescue Journal is a quarterly publication of the N.C. Department of Insurance Office of State Fire Marshal 1202 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699 Questions, comments or story ideas should be directed to Chris Best at 919-661-5880 x332 or [email protected] To sign up for the mailing list or to submit an address change, contact Trisha Tripp at 919-733-5238 or [email protected] 2,300 copies of the Journal, which is funded through a grant from the North Carolina Association of Insurance Agents, were printed at a cost of $2,074. Fall 2010 North Carolina Building Code: Adoption Process and Inception A Look Back North Carolina was one of the first states to adopt a statewide building code. The state’s first building regulations were passed in 1903. In 1933, the Legislature created the Building Code Council and gave the Council, in association with the Commissioner of Insurance, the authority to prepare and adopt a state building code. In 1935, the first North Carolina State Building Code was adopted; it was later ratified by the General Assembly in 1941. Other editions of the State Building Code include the 1953 edition, which was later ratified, reorganized and printed as the 1958 edition. The 1967 edition was based on the Standard Building Code and also utilized the egress chapter from the National Fire Protection Association’s Life Safety Code and several chapters of the National Building Code written by the American Insurance Association. Later editions, from 1978, 1991 and 1996, were based on the latest editions of the Standard Building Code with amendments prepared by the Building Code Council with the assistance of specially-appointed advisory and ad-hoc committees made up of code enforcement officials, contractors, designers and others affected by the regulations. The latest editions of the Building Code, from 2002, 2006 and 2009, were again prepared by ad-hoc committees based on the previous editions of the International Codes. Need for Changes There have been several incidents throughout history that have prompted the necessity of standardized building regulations, and some of these have resulted in almost immediate changes to building codes. In 1903, a fire at the Iroquois Theater in Chicago killed 603 of the approximately 2,500 people in the building at the time. Non-fire retardant materials (that were thought to be fire retardant), blocked exits, inward opening exits, incomplete fire escapes and several other issues were contributing factors in the deaths. In 1911, a high-rise garment factory fire in New York killed 146 and injured 70. Factors in that fire included improper number of exit stairways (two instead of the required three), wooden floors, narrow exits and locked exit doors. These two fires were major factors in the creation of NFPA’s Life Safety Code. Some issues that were addressed as a result of these fires were the requirement for sprinklers, fire proofing, outward opening doors in public buildings and increased exits in high-rise buildings. Other major fires that contributed to changes in building codes occurred in 1942 at the Cocoanut Grove in Boston, 1958 at Our Lady of the Angels School in Chicago, 1980 at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas, and 2000at the Station Nightclub in Rhode Island. These incidents also resulted in several changes to building codes across the board, including sprinkler requirements, fire alarm requirements, restrictions on the indoor use of pyrotechnics, exiting requirements and occupancy requirements. Dan Austin is an engineer with OSFM’s Research & Program Development. Lincolnton Fire Department Forms Bicycle Response Team Across the state, fire departments are proactively pursuing innovative methods of improving service delivery to their communities. An example of this can be found in Lincolnton, where the Lincolnton Fire Department has formed a Bicycle Response Team. The main objective of this team is to provide quick response during public events, as well as response to locations that would be difficult to access with a fire apparatus or an ambulance. When the bike team is deployed to an event or other situation, a minimum of two firefighter/ emergency medical technicians can quickly relay imperative information to other responding units and provide basic life support. The bicycles are outfitted with rear-mounted racks and equipment bags to carry an AED, oxygen, glucometer, bandages and other assorted medical equipment. In addition to providing emergency response, the department plans to use the bike team as a public education and injury prevention resource by having members offer safe bicycle riding tips and training to both children and adults. Most recently, Lincolnton’s bike team provided emergency response at the Lincoln County Apple Festival. This annual, one-day event brings over 50,000 people to an area of four city blocks. The bike team responded to 21 calls for service during this 8-hour event. Currently, the Lincolnton Bicycle Response Team has seven members. In September, each member completed a 32hour bicycle training class to obtain certification through the International Police Mountain Bike Association (IPMBA). The course was taught by Mike Hudspeth, a long time IPMBA instructor and member of the Guilford County EMS Bicycle Emergency Response Team (BERT). The course covered subjects ranging from riding in various traffic conditions to manipulating obstacles such as curbs and stairs. Other agencies with teams participating in the course were Catawba County EMS and Lincoln County EMS. (Above) Bike team members Heidi Heavner and Jeffery Hurt at the Lincoln County Apple Festival. (Below) Bike team members receive instruction during the IPMBA course. 3 The Fire & Rescue Journal Guilford County Fire Department Celebrates Long-Awaited New Station L ocated to the southeast of Greensboro, the 54-yearold Alamance Community Fire Department celebrated the completion of its new headquarters station with an open house on Oct. 10. The new station was long overdue; the old firehouse across the street bore evidence of numerous additions and renovations, reflecting decades of effort to keep up with larger apparatus, increasing administrative staffing and the addition of shift personnel. Perhaps the most telling sign that the former schoolhouse-turnedfirehouse had reached its breaking point was the addition of a mobile construction office next to the station to allow for needed office space. A three year process of designing and building a new state-of the-art facility began to allow Alamance to serve its community for the next half century. Discussions revolved around where the new station should be located. Many felt it should be moved away from Greensboro to facilitate the city’s growth, while the majority agreed that the community fire department could meet the needs of its citizens by remaining in the same general area of the old station. Three tracts of land were purchased directly across the street from the old firehouse, and clearing began in earnest. Two large farmhouses on the land were burned by the fire department for training. Grading and subsequent construction began in winter of 2009. The department moved into the station in late June 2010. This fall, Fire Chief Kevin Bowers led his 50-member department in welcoming the community into their new station (Above) The new Alamance Community Fire Station 54 was occupied in June of 2010; the old station seen in the background now serves as a meeting place for the local Boy Scout troop as well as a community center. The bays of the old station are now being used for training purposes. (Below) Congressman Howard Coble and Chief Kevin Bowers pause for a picture while visiting during the open house. on a beautiful, warm Sunday afternoon. More than 500 people, including former firefighters and board members, attended the gathering. Dignitaries in attendance included Congressman Howard Coble and Guilford County Commissioner Billy Yow. Assistant State Fire Marshal Tim Bradley represented the Office of State Fire Marshal and had many favorable remarks regarding the new building and its members. The partially-sprinklered station contains much needed additional office space, six bunk rooms, exercise, training and conference rooms, as well as several training features built into the station itself. These include a Nance floor prop for basement rescue training, a second floor window access for training inside during inclement weather, and numerous hard points throughout the eight apparatus bays for various rope work exercises. Due to the economic situation at the time construction was bid, the Alamance Community Fire Department was able to save over $1 million in the overall cost of completing the new station. OSFM Welcomes New Employee April Rush, Receptionist — April brings over 10 years of administrative and office management experience to OSFM. She and her husband Jerald have three children, and together they enjoy their church and neighborhood activities, and visiting the beach and the mountains. April is happiest whenever her family can visit her parents and 93-year-old grandmother near Williamsburg, VA. Welcome, April! April Rush 4 Fall 2010 Looking Forward Coming Soon: New Requirements for Rating by Assistant State Fire Marshal Tim Bradley I n order to effectively prepare for the future, as well as try to avoid mistakes of the past, the fire and rescue community needs well informed leaders and accurate data. This was the general consensus of members of the Gateway group at this year’s meeting. Gateway, as you may know, is a coalition of individuals from the major fire and rescue associations across the state that meets twice annually to discuss legislative needs, trends, current issues affecting fire and rescue departments in North Carolina, and more importantly, how we can work together to best protect the citizens of our state. Numerous issues have surfaced over the 10 years Gateway has been meeting, including, but not limited to: responder health and safety; responder benefits such as pension and retirement; workers’ compensation costs and health benefits; prevention initiatives such as residential sprinklers and smoke detectors; legislative issues and how best to lobby our General Assembly; and how the different associations can work together. The success of the Gateway group, established by the North Carolina State Firemen’s Association, has resulted in the completion of some key initiatives over the years. Two key initiatives brought forth this year involved: (1) how to get more accurate and complete incident reporting data; and (2) how to ensure chiefs across the state have up-to-date information on the requirements and regulations for managing a fire and rescue department. Both of these discussions have resulted in changes to the rules for a rated fire department. For more than 40 years, fire chiefs have been required by law to investigate and report fires to which their departments were dispatched (G.S. 58-79-1). Over a decade ago, this law was enhanced by the addition of another law that requires the fire report to be completed on a form approved by the state (G.S. 58-79-45). But because there was no mechanism in place for monitoring compliance, this requirement has gone largely unenforced, and only 70 percent of North Carolina fire departments report their fires. Even though the United States Fire Administration requires incident reporting for eligibility for their grants, many fire departments still do not report. This creates a disproportionate balance of data. At the request of Gateway, and after receiving letters requesting the change from several associations, OSFM has now implemented a requirement that ties incident reporting to ratings inspections. Effective Sept. 1, when a fire department is inspected for rating, they must be reporting to OSFM on the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS), which is required by the USFA for grants and is the only reporting form approved by the state. This will not affect the three-fourths of all fire departments that already report, but it will result in all departments complying with the law and increase the accuracy of the data used to determine North Carolina’s fire problem. In addition, over the years, several firefighters or their families have failed to receive benefits they should have been qualified to receive, and departments have lost funding they were due because of a failure by the chief officer of the department to correctly report information. With the myriad of information it now takes to manage a fire department, either career or volunteer, members of Gateway felt individuals assuming the level of chief should be required to take a short training course approved by the Fire and Rescue Commission to make them aware of benefits, requirements and opportunities available to them and their members. As a result, a second new requirement for rating, effective Oct. 1, requires that the chief officer must take, initially and within five years of each inspection, a short course titled “Chief 101.” The course will be delivered locally over a few nights in one week or a weekend. Topics such as rosters, personnel and employment laws, state and federal reporting requirements, firefighter and fire department benefits, and first responder safety initiatives will be discussed. During recent pilot offerings of the course, most students agreed they should have taken it long ago. These two requirements should provide for better data and betterinformed leaders. They will possibly prevent a firefighter’s widow from being denied huge benefits because rosters were not submitted or requirements were not met by a chief officer. Knowing the actual number, type and cause of fires in North Carolina will also help us legislatively and with injury prevention programs. Look for information coming out in the near future regarding these two new rating requirements. A small amount of effort by each department’s leadership will result in better security for our firefighters, families and citizens of North Carolina. You can visit and review Gateway’s reports at http://www.ncsfa.com/ ncsfa_gateway.htm. Burlington Fire Department Wins Near-Miss Award The Burlington Fire Department has been honored with the 2010 National Firefighter Near-Miss Award. The award, sponsored by the International Association of Fire Chiefs’ Safety, Health and Survival Section, the International Society of Fire Service Instructors, and the Fire Department Safety Officers Association, is given each year to the department that demonstrates the most effective use of the National Fire Fighter Near-Miss Reporting System for improving its overall safety culture. The Near-Miss Reporting System collects and analyzes information about near-miss events so that it can be used to improve operations and training. A near-miss event is an unintentional unsafe scenario that could have led to injuries, death or damage. The Burlington Fire Department implemented use of the system in 2008, and it has become part of the department’s overall safety methodology with the North Carolina Department of Labor Public Sector STAR Program. Burlington uses the reporting system to create an awareness of the hazards firefighters encounter and a method to involve everyone in the learning process. The department’s participation in the system includes online reporting of the lessons learned, using analysis of the system’s annual report to develop subcommittees (Left to Right) Deputy Chief Todd Bradley, Burlington Mayor Ronnie Wall, Chief Jay Smith to address future hazards, and training personnel by using reviews of specific near-misses as teaching tools. The safety culture that has been established will be maintained through effective leadership and encouraging participation by all of its members for years to come. 5 The Fire & Rescue Journal Live Fire Training: To Burn or Not to Burn O ne of the biggest questions fire departments are faced with today is: Do we really want to assume the liability of burning a house for training? In years past, little concern existed regarding this issue because fixed burn facilities were few and far between. Often this meant fire departments jumped at the chance to burn just about every house they could. Today many fire departments are somewhat reluctant to take advantage of the great training opportunity to burn acquired structures because of the potential liability and fear of participant injury. Over the past several years, there have been many instances of students and instructors being seriously injured and even killed during live burn training evolutions. The most ...continued from page 1 Mantooth said one of the reasons “Emergency!” was popular was its novelty; most people had never even heard the term paramedic before. But just as important to its success was its attention to detail and accuracy. He said the actors trained with firefighters and took a paramedics class. A handful of actual members of the Los Angeles County Fire Department played themselves on the show. Writers worked closely with consultants and technical advisors from the fire and rescue community when crafting the script. In fact, the character John Gage was named as a homage to Jim Page – a real-life LACoFD battalion chief and important advocate of early emergency medical services who 6 recent and high profile case involved the death of a Baltimore Fire Department recruit who died after a live burn scenario in a row house. Instances such as her death, combined with other cases where we have lost fellow firefighters, have led many departments to only burn in fixed facilities and avoid acquired structures altogether. This limits live burn instructors to only offer training within the constraints of a burn building. While a useful tool, burn buildings cannot completely duplicate or replace the live fire training objectives obtained in an acquired structure. Injuries should never be an accepted part of training. If an instructor teaches with the expectation that someone will get hurt, that particular instructor should seriously review served as one of the primary advisors on the show. “They taught us life lessons that we carry with us to this very day,” Mantooth said. The show is credited with bringing the concept of fire servicebased paramedics into America’s living rooms when such programs were in their infancies, and even with influencing communities to start their own programs. It also showed the public how CPR and first aid can be used in the field. Mantooth said that he frequently – nearly every day – is thanked by people who say they got into the fire and rescue service because they were inspired by what they saw on “Emergency!” To them, he says, “I’m not your hero; you’re my hero.” Even so, Mantooth admits that their teaching methods. Every instructor, regardless of the course being taught, is charged with maintaining good safety practices and ensuring that all students are accounted for during class and practical evolutions. This is an essential requirement during live burn events. NFPA 1403 mandates a student to instructor ratio of no more than 5-to-1. This provides an optimum span of control where students can easily be accounted for and supervised while operating in live fire conditions. While this doesn’t entirely eliminate the chance of an injury, it does help to provide a safer environment where students can be more closely monitored. Failure to follow this part of the live burn standard can potentially result in the instructor, Authority Having Jurisdiction and fire chief to be liable in the event of a firefighter casualty. In June 2006 the NFPA produced the report U.S. Firefighter Deaths Related to Training. This account studied 100 trainingrelated firefighter deaths that occurred over a 10 year period: • Apparatus and Equipment Drills: 36% • Physiological: 30% • Live Fire Training: 14% • Underwater/dive: 8% • Traveling to or from: 6% • Class/Seminar: 5% • Swat Medic: 1% In looking at the breakdown of percentages, we can see that 14 percent (or 14 deaths) were attributed to live fire training. However, this includes all deaths that occurred while the participants were involved in a live fire training scenario, regardless of the circumstances involved. A further analysis of the report reveals: • Two died while caught in a flashover (same event) when he first started doing the show, he didn’t realize the impact that it would have. He was a young man in his 20s, and while he enjoyed being a star on a popular television program, he sometimes complained about the long hours or early calls to the set. But as time passed, and the show continued to raise public awareness about the life-saving work of firefighters, paramedics, emergency room doctors and nurses, Mantooth says he and his co-stars began to appreciate the honor of being the “face” of the fire and rescue service. “We had the privilege of working with and being associated with such a special kind of human being, a unique breed that selflessly puts their life and their reputation on the line every day for the sole purpose of the safety and well-being of their fellow man,” Mantooth said. After his talk, Mantooth met with conference attendees and signed autographs to raise money for the County of Los Angeles Fire Museum Building Fund. LOOKING AHEAD Mark your calendar for the next Annual Conference. It is scheduled for Aug. 10-13, 2011. NCSFA Executive Director Paul Miller said he was pleased with this year’s attendance, but hopes to see the conference grow. “We encourage people to come back next year and bring someone with them,” Miller said. Information about the 2011 Annual Conference will be posted on www.ncsfa.com as details become finalized. Fall 2010 • Two died of smoke inhalation –– Rookie serving as a victim –– Assistant Chief lighting fires for burn down –– Six died from cardiac events –– Only one was an interior participant (a shipboard simulator) • Three died while operating as observers • One died while in command • One died while operating in an ARFF training simulator • Two died as a result of aneurysms –– one pump operator –– one preparing to enter the building to conduct a search • Two died after being struck by apparatus at the scene of training • One ran over by apparatus due to being in the wrong gear • One struck in the roadway while assigned to traffic control It is valuable to note that only four of these deaths directly resulted from actively participating in live fire training in an acquired structure. It is also just as important to realize that all four of these tragic losses resulted from potential errors by the instructor-in-charge and/or the AHJ. The remaining 10 deaths occurred as the result of circumstances other than the fire or the structure itself. The loss of firefighters to aneurysms and sudden cardiac events are not exclusive to live fire training, although no less tragic. With the exception of the ARFF simulator fatality and the firefighter that died after participating in a drill inside a shipboard simulator (burn building), those that experienced fatal cardiac events were not participating in interior fire operations. By removing the 10 fatalities not associated with fighting fire or functioning inside an acquired structure from the list, the actual number of firefighters who died as a result of live fire training inside an acquired structure was four, or four percent. The recalculated table would appear as: • Apparatus and Equipment: 38% • Physiological: 38% • • • • nderwater/dive: 8% U Traveling to or from: 6% Class/Seminar: 5% Live Fire Training in Acquired Structures: 4% • Swat Medic: 1% By looking at the table with the recalculated values, the argument could be made according to the data provided by the NFPA that it could be nearly three times as dangerous to combine driving to and attending a class or seminar as it is to burn an acquired structure for live fire training! With that being said, how can we as instructors help to change the growing sentiment against live fire in acquired structures? There are a few simple things: First, follow NFPA 1403. It is the standard that details what is required to safely conduct a burn and reduce liability. Second, new live burn instructors need to apprentice with experienced qualified instructors who are proactive in their live fire practices. It is one thing to help with a burn, it is another thing altogether to be the instructor-incharge. Remember, the instructor-in-charge is responsible for everything that occurs during the burn, as well as adherence to the NFPA 1403 standard. Make all efforts to burn with the same group of instructors regularly. The whole operation will run more smoothly if all the instructors are used to burning with one another. Finally, be proactive in protecting the privilege of burning acquired structures that we currently enjoy. Follow the rules and abide by the policies. Be upfront with participants and let them understand what you require from them in order to conduct a safe and controlled operation where everyone will learn, and everyone will go home. Brandon Hopkins is a captain with the Zebulon Fire Department in Wake County and a North Carolina Qualified Live Fire Instructor. Reidsville Rescue Squad Celebrates 50 Years of Service Current and past members of Reidsville Rescue Squad in attendance for the celebration. Saturday, Aug. 21, was a day of celebration for the City of Reidsville and Rockingham County. The Reidsville Rescue Squad was formed and chartered 50 years ago to the date. During a celebration at the squad’s headquarters, members honored Chief Joel Madren, and Steve Sloan from the Office of State Fire Marshal presented a certificate of appreciation on behalf of Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin to thank the squad for 50 years of dedicated service to the citizens of Reidsville, Rockingham County and North Carolina. Other presentations were made by Reidsville Mayor James Festerman, North Carolina Representative Nelson Cole, Rockingham County Emergency Services Director Steve Hale, and Gordon Joyner with the North Carolina Association of Rescue and EMS. Joyner shared a copy of the roster displaying the original charter members. Jim Hardy was recognized as the only charter member still on the active roster. This was a joyous time of celebration for a welldeserved accomplishment. 7 The Fire & Rescue Journal Training Innovations: Urban Search and Rescue Spotlight on Cape Fear Community College, New Hanover County (Above) The USAR training prop’s Conex box contains four compartments that represent four different responder situations. (Below) The second compartment simulates a collapsed second floor scenario. I t is always encouraging to see innovation within North Carolina’s fire and rescue community. Our state boasts some of the most highly-trained, motivated and professional emergency responders in the nation. The reason for such superior performance can be directly related to the progressive thinking and ingenuity of individuals such as firefighter Warren Smith of New Hanover County Fire and Rescue. Smith has been a firefighter with New Hanover County Fire and Rescue for five years. Over a year ago, he joined North Carolina Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) Task Force Team 11. During time spent training with the team, he noticed a need for realistic training and exercise to prepare members for the multi-hazard nature of USAR Team response. Training for USAR operations isn’t a simple undertaking. Scenarios that require a USAR Team activation may require locating, extricating and medical stabilization of victims trapped in confined spaces. Events such as structural collapse, transportation accidents, collapsed trenches and natural disasters are just a few types of emergencies that USAR Teams may respond to. Once Smith recognized the need for USAR specific training, he took immediate actions to begin meeting that need. Having owned and operated his own construction business since 1993, Smith used his business and technical skills to design, fund and build a multi- faceted, realistic USAR training prop. With support from area fire chiefs, Cape Fear Community College and fellow fire/rescue instructors, Smith was able to obtain materials and construct the prop in less than one day. As shown in Photograph A, the main component of the prop is a Conex box. This was obtained from a neighboring fire station where it was no longer in use. Inside, Smith built four separate compartments. Each compartment contains different types of construction components designed to simulate a variety of structural collapse scenarios. The compartments are independent of one another so that four different training scenarios can be performed simultaneously. The first compartment is one level. It is designed to hold a variety of items that could be encountered during a residential structural collapse. In its latest use, Smith simulated a structural collapse with a single victim trapped by common household items, such as a washing machine or dishwasher, and various structural members. The second compartment, shown in Photograph B, is designed and built to simulate a two-floor (lean to) collapse scenario. The top floor features a bed frame and mattress with a victim in need of rescue. In this scenario, responders make entry and are required to shore collapsed materials as they progress. This scenario also contains hazards to be identified such as simulated electrical wiring and natural gas piping. The presence of such simulated hazards enables students to enhance their situational awareness skills as they note each hazard they encounter and take appropriate response actions. The third compartment is similar to the second in that it contains two levels; it is intended to create various collapse scenarios. The fourth compartment is constructed to simulate collapse due to explosion with multiple victims. According to Smith, each scenario may take up to three hours from time of deployment to victim extrication. Scenarios are designed to employ the use of almost every piece of equipment in the USAR Team’s cache. Safety was also a major consideration during construction of this prop. As shown in Photograph B, each compartment contains openings that provide instructors access to students during evolutions. Like all aspects of emergency services, safe and realistic training is fundamental to the success of real life incidents requiring USAR response. With progressive, motivated individuals like firefighter Warren Smith, such vital training is now available to N.C. USAR Task Force Team 11 and surrounding agencies. Innovations in training such as this are what continue to propel North Carolina’s fire and rescue services forward in superior service delivery and professionalism. If you have any questions or would like further information about this training prop, feel free to contact: FF/AO Warren Smith Station 52 C Shift NHCFR-NCTF 11 5901 Murrayville Rd Wilmington, NC 28411 910-264-1808 cell 910-798-7575 work If you or someone you know has made steps towards training innovations that you would like to see featured in the Fire & Rescue Journal, please contact Heidi Heavner, training specialist with OSFM’s Research and Program Development, at [email protected] in the months leading up to the fire, and wooden buildings were dry from the drought conditions. The O’Leary’s fire was not the first in the city. When firemen were alerted to the fire at the O’Leary’s, they were slow to respond because they were exhausted from battling a large fire the day before. By the time they arrived, the blaze was already out of control. It’s believed the fire could have started with carelessly discarded smoking materials or a lantern, combined with the drought conditions. Most life safety educators, inspectors, code officials, and other fire and rescue personnel believe that lessons come from tragedies and that the Great Chicago Fire was a “teachable moment” that evolved into one of the biggest fire prevention movements of history. People felt that if this could happen in a city such as Chicago, building codes and fire prevention efforts would have to be strengthened. Another important lesson should have come from that same time span: Small communities are not Small Communities Are Not Immune Fire Prevention Week always falls during the week of Oct. 9. Ask most fourth grade school kids, as well as any fire educator, and they’ll tell you Fire Prevention Week is held that week every year because of the Great Chicago Fire in 1871. The Great Chicago Fire was a conflagration that burned from Sunday, Oct. 8, to early Tuesday, Oct. 10, 1871, killing 250 people, destroying about four square miles of the city, and causing millions of dollars in damages. There is also an irresistibly charming legend about a cow and a lantern among the stories that 8 circulate concerning the cause of this huge tragedy. But according to reports in the Chicago Tribune, “The fabled kicking over of a kerosene lamp by Mrs. O’Leary’s cow has been widely discounted as the cause of the fire. Instead, the cause is seen to have been the city’s eagerness to grow faster than any place in history.” As the city grew, construction was done quickly and cheaply, with most buildings and sidewalks made of wood. Brick structures were also trimmed with wood and had wooden roofs. There was little rain Continued on page 11... Fall 2010 Inspection Tips Methods of Survey Q: A: What Method of Survey Is Best For My District? Over the years, we have all heard that the method of operation directly affects the credit received for the fire department survey. Each department is given the responsibility of deciding what method is best for the district it serves. The first question that must be answered to determine the best method of operation is, how does the department function on the fire ground? You must determine if hydrants are accessed and utilized or if drop tanks are used to obtain a water supply. The second question to be answered is, how is the water supply maintained? The department can continue the use of pressurized hydrants, locate water points and utilize a tanker relay, or use a combination of the two. The final question to be determined by the department is, are all pressurized hydrants, water points and dry hydrants within 1,000 feet of a structure utilized? This can be achieved when the water department allows the fire department to connect to the pressurized hydrants and property owners give the department permission to use water points and dry hydrants. It is also important to remember to have the soil and water conservation service or certified engineer in your area certify the water supply in total gallons available for each water point. Once the department can determine the water supply’s capabilities and its functionality, then a method can be selected. The four methods of operation are: Method 1 (may result in a split rating): Using only pressurized fire hydrants for supplying water, with no tanker relay utilized Method 2 (may result in a split rating): Using pressurized fire hydrants and/or suction points for supplying water, with no tanker relay utilized Method 3 (for a single rating): Using pressurized fire hydrants and a tanker relay from pressure hydrants and/or suction points to provide water Method 4 (for a single rating): Using a tanker relay only from pressure hydrants and/or suction points to provide water Why do Method 1 and Method 2 potentially result in split ratings? This is due to the district not having enough pressurized hydrants and/ or suction points to equal at least 85 percent coverage without utilizing a tanker relay. This gives all property owners within 1,000 feet of the hydrant or water point a grade below a Class 9. If a department wants to change its method of operation, it is important to notify OSFM inspection staff before it is due for its next inspection. After the inspection is scheduled, it is very difficult to change the method due to potential scheduling conflicts. Departments that currently have a 9S/9E rating will receive priority in scheduling. A request by these departments to have an inspection for lowering the grade below 9 must also be made. To request a method change with OSFM inspection staff, contact: A.C. Daniels 1202 Mail Service Center Raleigh, NC 27699-1202 [email protected] You can also make a request on the OSFM website at http://www. ncdoi.com/OSFM/RI/ri_home.asp. Under the Forms menu on the left, select Submit Survey Request. Bryant Waters is a ratings inspector with the Training and Inspections Division. The OSFM Fire and Rescue Journal Transitions to Online Format With the success of OSFM’s website, facebook page and other online ventures, we have decided to test out a new electronic version of the Fire and Rescue Journal. The electronic version will be housed on OSFM’s existing website and will provide readers with more current and up-to-date information about the happenings at OSFM and the fire and rescue industry. You’ll still see the great feature stories highlighting Live Fire Trainings, Historical Fires and others, but we’ll also be able to share much more! Transitioning to an electronic format also helps OSFM remain both economically and environmentally responsible. We will have one last traditional print edition of the Fire and Rescue Journal due out later this winter. There we will preview the new site and provide you all the information needed to access the online version. 9 The Fire & Rescue Journal Leaders or Entertainers Psychiatrist Leo Randall analyzed the relationship between former President Richard Nixon and some of his closest confidants in the Watergate scandal. Here’s a conversation he recorded between Sen. Howard Baker and one of Nixon’s aides, Herbert Porter: Baker: “Did you ever have qualms about what you were doing?” Porter: “No!” Baker: “Why?” Porter: “Group pressure. I was afraid of not being considered a team player.” Porter chose popularity over integrity and lost. These folks have great resumes and great stories, but the real quality of their contributions are in the eyes of those they work with on a daily basis. We often define leaders with very simple words like “good” and “bad.” Let’s look at some of the qualities that make a good leader. Leading well is learned from following well. One of the qualities of a good leader is the act of submission. Submission is not a word we normally associate with a leader, but a good leader knows about submission because they’ve walked in the shoes of those who they are leading. Leaders who have Submission is not a word we normally associate with a leader, but a good leader knows about submission because they’ve walked in the shoes of those who they are leading. Rigid adherence to a code of behavior – that’s integrity. We have all identified integrity as one of the many characteristics of a good leader. We have many fine examples of leadership among men and women in the fire service, but let’s be careful that we don’t get leadership confused with entertainment. There are more than 750 “Halls of Fame” in our country, and there are more than 450 lists of “Who’s Who.” Many of these individuals are seen as leaders, but with a few exceptions, most of them are actually entertainers who hold our attention for a short period of time relative to an entire lifetime. not been in a position where they had to submit to authority tend to be proud of themselves rather than the organization; they are unrealistic in their expectations of others, primarily because their shortcomings are revealed when things get difficult; and their autocratic nature is revealed when things don’t go according to “their” plan. Building relationships and connecting with others becomes possible because you’ve walked in their shoes. British essayist John Foster writes, “A man without decision of character can never be said to belong to himself. He belongs to whatever can make a captive of him.” Self-discipline is required in order to make good, sound decisions. It is tempting to get caught up in all the new-age thinking and jump at every chance to do something new, but the ability to wait and evaluate to determine benefit is more important than reacting to the latest fad or innovation. Probably the most difficult thing for most people to do, especially in our culture today, is to wait. While patience is truly a virtue, most of us are in-the-moment types who want what we want, when we want it. We talk a lot about the impatience of the “new generation,” but where did they get their examples from? In reality we are all plagued with the “I can’t wait” syndrome. Patient leaders are always looking forward, thinking of the future, and true leaders want to keep things moving in a positive way. While moving forward, we must be careful not to forget those that we are responsible for. Finishing ahead of them or finishing as an individual should not be a primary goal. Our primary goal should be to take as many others with us as we can to develop leaders. We do this by intentionally slowing our pace. Recognize who your people are, what their skill levels are, and, maybe most importantly, know what their personal desires and goals are. Communicate “with them,” rather than “to them,” and involve them in the development of the vision that keeps things moving forward. Solomon said, “Finishing is better than starting. Patience is better than pride.” Accountability is another quality of a good leader. Accountability in leadership is often misunderstood because most believe that accountability is a willingness to explain your actions. A good leader recognizes that real accountability actually starts well before any action is taken. They realize that they are accountable for their actions throughout the decision-making process, and the earlier in the process they recognize that, the better and more successful their decisions will be for the entire team. Ronald Regan said, “No leader is bigger than the country.” In that same context, none of us are bigger than the fire service. We are here for only a short time. Entertainers practically buy their way into our lives for short periods of time, and when their “moment of fame” is over we move on to another person who is popular at the moment. Leaders are people who have a lasting impact on our lives. Leadership is a choice. Choose integrity over popularity and leadership over entertainment; it’ll stay fresher longer in the memories of those you are privileged to work with. Kenneth Mullen is the executive director of the North Carolina Fire Chief ’s Association. OSFM Employees Earn Recognition Assistant State Fire Marshal Tim Bradley Earns International Recognition Safe Kids North Carolina Director Kelly Ransdell Wins Governor’s Award Tim Bradley, Senior Deputy Commissioner and Assistant State Fire Marshal, was recently named a Fellow by the Institution of Fire Engineers in Glouchestershire, UK. The IFE has more than 12,000 members worldwide, but fewer than 200 have achieved the grade of Fellow. Bradley is recognized for his more than 36 years of work in the fire service and with the International Fire Service Accreditation Congress and the National Fire Protection Association Professional Qualification Committee for Fire Instructors. One of his many accomplishments was co-authoring a paper on Accreditation of Fire Service Training and Education Internationally. Kelly Ransdell, Deputy Director of the Prevention, Programs and Grants Division and Director of Safe Kids N.C., is the recipient of the 2010 Governor’s Award for Excellence, Public Service Category. Ransdell was nominated by her colleagues at OSFM for her work in developing Operation Medicine Drop, a statewide initiative to prevent unintentional poisonings, prescription drug abuse and groundwater contamination by providing the public with safe ways to dispose of medications. In its first year, through 186 OMD events statewide, 1.4 million dosages of expired and unused over-the-counter and prescription medications were collected and destroyed to help protect the public. 10 Fall 2010 Western Piedmont Community College Opens Emergency Services Training Center As fire and rescue professionals, we all know the value of quality training. While creative instructors and training officers can orchestrate innovative methods to deliver high quality training in any environment, the presence of an emergency services training facility makes such endeavors a bit less arduous. Emergency personnel who work in areas accessible to training centers can attest to the value these facilities provide by offering realistic fire and rescue training opportunities. After many years of anticipation, emergency service personnel in Burke County will finally be exposed to such opportunities with the opening of Western Piedmont Community College’s Emergency Services Training Center. Seven years after the initial plans were formulated, the official dedication and opening of this project was held on Sept. 14. The center is located in Morganton- Burke’s county seat. Training props include a Swede Flashover simulator, a residential burn building, an Enforcer Forcible Entry simulator, a flammable liquids pit, a vehicle fire and fuel spill simulator, as well as an emergency vehicle driving pad. One component that makes this training center unique in North Carolina is its multifaceted Liquefied Petroleum (LP) gas training opportunities. Examples of LP-specific training props include a residential gas grill, a propane fueled forklift, twin 1,000 pound LP cylinders, a Bobtail delivery truck, an off-loading railcar platform, and a bulk LP storage facility with vaporizer. The ESTC also includes over 300 acres of adjoining land that can be used for SAR and ATV rescue training. Burke County borrowed $2.5 million to build the first phase of the ESTC. Expansion will continue over the next several years to include a commercial burn building, a seven-story drill tower with a confined space simulator and high angle training components, a multi-use building with classrooms, an apparatus bay and a gym. Mike Willis, the emergency services director of Western Piedmont Community College. has been the catalyst for development of this facility. From planning layouts and approving designs, to personally putting the final coat of paint on the training props, Willis has taken extraordinary measures to bring the dream of this training center to a reality. “I want to help build a training environment that will allow instructors access to the tools necessary to reach all levels of learning with all levels of students,” Willis said. “It is my hope that by blending old school training with new school training, the ESTC will house concepts and practices that will educate, enhance skills and provide the safest environment for training that pertains to our past, present and future generations of fire and rescue personnel.” Hickory Fire Department Captain Todd Frizsell was also instrumental in the process. An adjunct instructor with Western Piedmont, Frizsell has spent countless hours of personal time assisting Willis with the construction of the ESTC. Burke County is fortunate to have such dedicated and passionate fire and rescue members leading them into the future. (Top) WPCC President Jim Burnett, Dean of Continuing Education Lee Kiser, Director of Emergency Programs Mike Willis, and the WPCC Board of Trustees cut the ribbon at the new training center. (Left) WPCC Instructors demonstrate one of the many LP Gas training props at the new ESTC. ...Continued from page 8 immune from disaster! Between the evening of Oct. 8 and Oct. 14, 1871, the worst recorded forest fire in North American history raged through northeastern Wisconsin and upper Michigan, destroying millions of dollars worth of property and timberland, and taking between 1,200 and 2,400 lives. The Great Peshtigo Fire of 1871 occurred at practically the same time as the Great Chicago Fire, killed nearly four times as many people, and had some of the same attributes affecting its severity. There were prolonged and widespread drought conditions and high temperatures. The small community of Peshtigo dealt in logging and lumber, and a saw mill created huge amounts of sawdust. Since wood was plentiful, not only were buildings made of wood, but sidewalks were as well, with streets and building floors coated with sawdust to keep down the dust. The toppings (laps) of felled trees were left by the roadside and created dry kindling for fire. Urban renewal did not exist. The similarities between the two disasters concerning fire are hard to discount, and both communities saw rapid growth without concern for construction characteristics as a huge contributor to catastrophe. Human nature seems to promote an “it can’t happen here” attitude in smaller communities, and prevention advocates can be viewed as costly pessimists. The Great Chicago Fire had a significant impact on construction for cities, yet rural America was slow to follow. If the Peshtigo Fire had gotten the same publicity in 1871, perhaps rural fire safety efforts would have come more quickly. We still have people who believe sprinklers are great for big buildings but a waste on smaller homes. There’s a Fire Museum in Chicago, and there is also one in Peshtigo — located at the city’s oldest surviving church building. Both are stark reminders of the devastation that fire can create in both large and small communities. Tim Bradley serves as Senior Deputy Commissioner and Assistant State Fire Marshal with OSFM. 11 The Fire & Rescue Journal A Rapid Intervention Team Training Pilot was conducted at Cape Fear Community College from Aug. 16–20. Six instructors from New Hanover County, Wilson Fire Department and Moorehead City Fire Department were qualified, and 21 students were certified. (Right) Instructors oversee window bailout practical. (Below) Students work on victim removal scenarios. Just a few weeks later, another RIT Pilot was held in Wilson from Aug. 30–Sept. 3. Seventeen students from seven fire departments received RIT Certification, and six instructors received RIT Qualification. www.ncdoi.com/osfm 1202 Mail Service Center Raleigh, NC 27699-1202 (919) 661-5880 (Top Left) Captain Michael Strange of Rocky Mount Fire Department demonstrates a ladder bailout. (Far Left) Captain T.J. Underwood of Goldsboro Fire Department performs a rope slide. (Near Left) Edward Harris and Anthony Ladd of Rocky Mount Fire Department initiate RIT packaging on a simulated downed firefighter.
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