Of interest … local chef helps wildland firefighters and victims

Excerpts from the ChicagoTribune.com:

Elgin chef Ryan Waesche was recently in Northern California where he helped feed victims and crews battling the largest wildfires in that state’s history. He volunteers with Mercy Chefs, a nonprofit from Virginia that serves quality meals to those dealing with natural disasters. Last year, he was part of the group’s efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey in Texas, Hurricane Irma in Florida, and the wildfire around Santa Rosa, Calif. The Mendocino Complex Fire that began in late July has burned more than 366,000 acres and been only partially contained. Waesche returned Tuesday from a 13-day stint there, where Mercy Chefs set up in Redding, Calif., near the Carr Fire.

The group gave out an average of 1,800–2,000 meals a day working with the Salvation Army for eight days. They brought 800 of the meals to three distribution sites in the impacted area.

Waesche said he was touched by meeting a family of nine who did not lose their home but who were displaced by the blazes. The father was a handyman looking for work and he volunteered to help make repairs, assisting a man who owned several local radio stations. The station owner then hired the man to help repair antennae for his stations.


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New Rescue 36 for Park Ridge

From Facebook:

Park Ridge FD Rescue 36

Park Ridge FD Rescue 36

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New ambulance for Berwyn

As seen on the street – new Berwyn FD Ambulance 905

Berwyn FD Ambulance 905

Berwyn FD Ambulance 905

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New tower ladder for Monee

From the Pierce Flickr site:

Pierce Monee Fire Protection Dist, IL 31411

New fire truck for the Monee FPD

Pierce composite

thanks Al

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Harvard Fire Protection District news

Excperts from the northwestherald.com:

An internal investigation into Harvard Fire Protection District employee misconduct unanimously was approved Tuesday by the district’s board. The board hired the Naperville-based Ottosen, Britz, Kelly, Cooper, Gilbert and DiNolfo law firm to conduct the investigation. The firm represents more fire protection districts than any other law firm in the state.  The firm’s billing rates are $225 an hour for attorneys, $160 an hour for law clerks and $150 for paralegal services. Retainer fee agreements to cover meetings and phone calls, flat-fee arrangements to cover fixed projects and flexible financial packages will ensure high-quality service to even the most financially burdened units of local government.

“As a result of our firm’s expertise and commitment to the fire service, we believe we will be able to bring a unique perspective to your district’s legal issues,” Ottosen said in the email. “We would welcome the opportunity to serve the Harvard Fire Protection District and anticipate no conflicts of interest with any of our clients.”

thanks Dan

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Northbrook Fire Department news

Excerpts from the ChicagoTribune.com:

For the past year, the Northbrook police and fire departments have seen major changes in their managerial ranks as some officials retired and others were promoted.

The Northbrook Fire Department has promoted administrative officials 17 times since last summer, said Fire Chief Andrew Carlson. Some employees were promoted twice within that time frame. Carlson for example was promoted to deputy chief and then chief, he said. The promotions in the fire department led to six new hires, all firefighters and paramedics, and the department will hire two more firefighters and paramedics in October.

Since he was appointed in January, Carlson said the fire department has spent a lot of time reviewing previous procedures to increase efficiency. In May, the department reverted back to its previous policy of having two deputy chiefs, which also contributed to the fire department promotions this year. Moving forward, the department will spend time doing a data analysis to have the ability to predict where call volumes will come from.

In the Northbrook Police Department, the retirement of eight administrative positions led to multiple shifts within the department.

All of the promotions have been internal, which benefits the departments because the officials moving up in rank have institutional, community and procedural knowledge. Most promotions are a result of a retirements after serving the community for the majority of their career. The departments can see multiple retirements in a given year because a lot of employees are hired at the same time early on in their career and stay with the department for decades.

As police and fire officials move through the ranks, the departments need to hire new officers and firefighter/paramedics. Following state statutes, both departments partner with agencies in neighboring communities to test candidates looking for police and fire jobs.

The departments work with the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners to select which candidates to hire based on the initial test scores, interviews, and other department requirements, like a polygraph, Adkins said. Both departments are required to administer the test every two years, so if a position opens they have lists of potential candidates.

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West Chicago Fire Department news

Excerpts from Chicago.cbslocal.com:

Firefighters were training when they discovered a smoldering body laying in the grass. The drill turned into a death investigation in the 1300 block of Joliet Street in West Chicago. Investigators were on the scene almost ten hours after the body was found burning in a field. There were a number of boarded up homes on the abandoned property.

Firefighters say they were scheduled to burn the abandoned houses in a controlled burn exercise when they made the gruesome discovery. West Chicago Police say the body was of an adult male. His identity is being withheld until an autopsy is performed and the family is notified.

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Buffalo Grove Fire Department news

Excerpts from abc7chicago.com:

A pickup truck slammed into a light pole in Buffalo Grove early Thursday morning and burst into flames. Police said the driver was headed east on Half Day Road when the truck left the road and struck a light pole near Willow Parkway around 3:50 a.m. The truck caught fire and sustained heavy damage. The driver managed to climb out of the vehicle and was found by first responders police a few feet from the scene. 

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North Riverside Fire Department news

Excerpts from the rblandmark.com:

Members of a local progressive political group, along with many North Riverside residents, packed the Aug. 13 meeting of the village board to protest the hiring of an interim fire chief, with the mayor stating that a search for a permanent replacement is ongoing.

Typically routine affairs that last 20 or 30 minutes at most, the board meeting featured calls for a new chief and pleas to female elected officials to take seriously the sexual harassment allegations in a lawsuit, settled in 2009 by the village of Oak Lawn, against Interim Fire Chief Scott Boman.

Meanwhile, others, including former North Riverside Mayor Richard Scheck and his wife, Judith, defended Boman, claiming he was innocent of the allegations and the target of a smear campaign launched against him by a disgruntled female employee.

At the time Boman’s appointment was announced a month ago, Mayor Hubert Hermanek Jr. announced that Boman would be formally sworn in Aug. 13. That, however, did not happen, though he was present at the meeting. Asked following the meeting when or if Boman would be sworn in, the mayor said he was “interim until he’s not interim” and that he was still interviewing candidates.

Regarding the search process, Hermanek said he was tapping the resources of the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association and accepting resumes from individuals who have expressed interest in the job.

Members of Indivisible West Suburban Action League organized a protest of the swearing-in, and its members — predominantly women from Riverside and North Riverside — jammed the council chamber in North Riverside Village Commons and loudly applauded the handful of women who stepped up to ask that Hermanek find another candidate for fire chief.

thanks Dan

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New engine for Tinley Park (more)

This from Kevin Griffin:

Here’s a shot of the new Tinley Park Engine 47 2018 Pierce enforcer

Tinley Park FD Engine 47

Tinley Park FD Engine 47. Kevin Griffin photo

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