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March 31, 2014

Rescue Medical Care

I  was the second EMS Officer to arrive (after EMS Lieutenant Fred Desarno) at the incident at approximately 2040 hours. Lieutenant Desarno, acting as the initial Medical Branch Director, instructed me to proceed to the south excavation entrance where on-scene workers were clamoring for assistance. I […]
March 1, 2014

Tricks of the Trade: Gate-Opening Tool by Captain Carlos Vazquez

Building owners and superintendents have increased steps to prevent access, crime and vandalism to their property by installing steel gated doors. Normally, these doors lead to the rear and sides of multiple dwellings. With a much stronger presence of Fire Code enforcement, these gates usually are […]
March 1, 2014

Gasoline-Powered Tools and Ethanol-Blended Gasoline: What You Need to Know

FDNY carries a variety of gasoline-powered equipment that is required to be operational at a moment’s notice. Condition of both tools and fuel–especially ethanol-blended fuel–is extremely important. The operational readiness and serviceability of FDNY’s equipment are the subject of this article. The Clean Air Act Amendment […]
March 1, 2014

Risk Based Inspection System (RBIS)

Building inspection is a critical core competency of FDNY field units. Inspections are carried out for two primary reasons: safety of the public and safety of Firefighters. Safety of the public is enhanced when field units identity hazards that endanger occupants of a building. Such hazards […]
March 1, 2014

Secondary Egress from Multiple Dwellings

FDNY members encounter many kinds of non-fireproof (NFP) residential buildings during fire and emergency responses or during Building Inspection Safety Program (BISP) periods. When it comes to secondary egress, Firefighters are concerned with whether the building is a multiple dwelling (MD) or a private dwelling (PD). […]
March 1, 2014

Go Big, Go Early, Go Fast and Be Smart: Fifth Alarm at Manhattan Box 1626

When Craig Fugate became Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in May 2009, he pushed his organization to change their disaster response to “go big, go early, go fast and be smart.” Not surprising that with a firefighting background, this motto was adopted from […]
March 1, 2014

Man in the Mud: Rescue Medical Care

Editors Note: This is part of a 4-Part Series entitled Man in the Mud. See feature article. I was the second EMS Officer to arrive (after EMS Lieutenant Fred Desarno) at the incident at approximately 2040 hours. Lieutenant Desarno, acting as the initial Medical Branch Director, […]
March 1, 2014

Man in the Mud: Comfort and Support

Editors Note: This is part of a 4-Part Series entitled Man in the Mud. See feature article. By prior arrangement, on the evening of March 19, 2013, I was at Fire Department Headquarters. The initial call for a construction worker trapped in the Second Avenue subway […]
March 1, 2014

Man in the Mud: Victim Removal

Editors Note: This is part of a 4-Part Series entitled Man in the Mud. See feature article. On arrival, Chief Hayde observed a construction worker trapped up to his chest in a clay and water slurry solution. Ladder 43 personnel had secured him with a lifesaving […]
March 1, 2014

Man in the Mud: FDNY Rescues Sandhog from Bull’s Liver at Second Avenue Subway Excavation Site

Whosoever saves a single life saves an entire universe.–taken from the Talmudic Tractate Sanhedrin 4:5, as referenced/verified by Rabbi Joseph Potasnik, FDNY Chaplain. Initial response On Tuesday, March 19, 2013, at 2033 hours, units were assigned to respond to Manhattan Box 1233 (a medical emergency; male […]
December 1, 2015

Fire Prevention Matters: Green Energy Part II — Electrochemical Technology

Battery technology initially can be attributed to the Italian inventor Alessandro Volta (1745-1827). In the 1800s, he designed an assembly consisting of plates of two different metals, such as zinc and copper, positioned in stacks separated by paper soaked in brine or vinegar. Volta’s battery was […]
December 1, 2015

What the Probie or Junior Firefighter Should Know: Adapter Use at Standpipe Outlets

Use of the NST female to FDNY male adapter Problem: The pressure gauge or 21⁄2-inch hose does not thread onto the standpipe outlet. Reason: The FDNY uses its own thread specification for its hose couplings. Many other fire departments have their own thread specifications. National Standard […]
December 1, 2015

Safety First: Safety at Motor Vehicle Accidents

Size-up starts at the receipt of the alarm, but for this exercise, size-up starts when you examine the accompanying photo below. It is a frozen moment in time and you are the Safety Officer assigned. Your goal is to ensure the safety of all members operating […]
December 1, 2015

Learn from History: The Third Avenue Collapse

On April 4, 1956, a tragic front wall collapse occurred at Bronx Box 44-2904, located at 4085 Third Avenue, between East 174th and 175th Streets. Three members of Engine 48, two members of Ladder 44 and one Chief’s Aide–who was assigned to Assistant Chief Antonio Petronelli–were […]
December 1, 2015

Rescue 1 Operations at Box 77-436

Rescue 1 members arrived at 121 2nd Avenue and observed that a collapse had occurred and heavy smoke and fire were pushing from a five-story old law tenement (OLT). Rescue 1 reported in to Battalion Chief Edward Tierney, Battalion 6, and was put to work. A […]
December 1, 2015

Responsbilities of the All Hands Chief at Box 77-436

Battalion 2, Battalion Chief John Dunne, was assigned as the All Hands Chief upon transmission of signal 10-75 for Box 436. As members responded, Battalion Chief Edward Tierney, Battalion 6, the first Battalion Chief on-scene, transmitted signal 10-60 for a major building collapse. Chief Dunne arrived […]
December 1, 2015

Manhattan Deadly Gas Explosion = A Complex Operation

Deadly gas explosions are a disconcerting reality for New York City Firefighters. Manhattan residents have suffered two high-profile gas explosions, including the Harlem gas explosion on March 12, 2014, which killed eight people and injured 70. Tragedy struck again on March 26, 2015, when the second […]
December 1, 2015

Five Ladder Operations that the Engine Must be Able to Perform to Save Lives

It’s a rivalry as old as the FDNY itself–engine vs. truck. Every engine member knows that there was never a fire in the FDNY’s history that was extinguished with a Halligan or hook.   Conversely, every truck member knows that without them, the engine wouldn’t have the […]