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Mattoon Fire Department news (more)

Excerpts from the

The City pf Mattoon will likely appeal a state panel’s ruling that the Mattoon Fire Department’s ambulance service should be reinstated. The three ambulances have been in storage since the city shuttered its emergency medical service on July 25, 2018, but officials have said that new equipment would be needed before the service could resume.

An Illinois Labor Relations Board State Panel ruled on Aug. 18 that the service should be restored because the city violated firefighters’ collective bargaining agreement by the way it was eliminated.

The city administrator said the ruling hinges on differing interpretations of the Illinois Substitutes Act’s scope and that the city maintains that it did not substitute unqualified contractors for firefighter-paramedics, but instead exercised its right to eliminate the municipal ambulance service and rely instead on the certified paramedics in existing private service in Mattoon.
The case stems from the city council adopting a resolution on July 18, 2017 to eliminate the ambulance service as a cost cutting measure. City officials reported then that this service was too costly and was duplicating the work of private providers. Mattoon Firefighters Association Local 691, which subsequently filed grievances, has maintained that the service provided essential community care and city revenue.

Following rulings in favor of the city and the union on various points, the ambulance dispute reached a new stage with the state panel’s recent ruling.

“The city implemented the change in the firefighters’ working conditions under the parties’ current agreement without bargaining to impasse or submitting the matter to interest arbitration,” the panel wrote. “Because the parties’ collective bargaining agreement requires the parties to provide ambulance services, the cessation of city-operated ambulance services and the resultant transfer of firefighters’ work responding to emergency medical calls changed the existing conditions of employment.”

Firefighters union President Bart Owen said the appeals process can take up to a year. He noted that the union’s civil contempt filing from last year in Coles County Circuit Court is still pending. This filing calls for the city to be held in contempt for not bringing contracted staffing levels back up to 30 firefighters as called for by a Dec. 9, 2019 court ruling.

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Peoria Fire Department news (more)

Excerpts from

An attempt to reverse the planned budget-related cuts of two Peoria Fire Department engines fell short Tuesday night, after the city council unanimously agreed to issue $4 million in working cash bonds to keep the Peoria Civic Center afloat.

A District 2 council member proposed increasing the city’s borrowing to $15 million as a way to save fire department engines 4 and 20, and 22 associated positions. That $15 million figure represented an additional $1 million beyond the $10 million proposed earlier this month and the $4 million for the Civic Center. The proposal contingent on the firefighters’ union agreeing to a $500,000 settlement of a pending unfair labor practices appeal.

After firefighters’ union president Ryan Brady said he would need seven days to hear from his members on the willingness to agree to a settlement, the legality of that contingency raised some question, with one suggesting it might be a quid pro quo. The council eventually consulted with the city attorney in a 30-minute executive session prior to the vote. But those who opposed the plan said the issue already had been decided.

Money to repay the $4 million, 10-year bond for the civic center will come from hotel, restaurant, and amusement tax dollars. The civic center does not have the authority to issue its own bonds.

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New home for Prospect Heights pumper/squad (more)

Former Prospect Heights FPD Squad 9 is now Jay VFD Squad 9 in the Town of Jay, Vermont

Former Prospect Heights FPD Squad 9

Richard Deuso photo

thanks Drew

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3-Alarm fatal fire in Glendale Heights, 8-24-20 (more)

Excerpts from the

Hearing the sound of an explosion and windows shattering, and seeing thick, black smoke billowing out of a condominium building, Glendale Heights police officers Bradley Lautner, Grzegorz Kapusciak, and Robin Lambert they ran into the Waters Edge condo complex concerned with getting the occupants out safely.

A father and 4-year-old son suffered gunshot wounds to their heads and were found dead inside the condo after the Aug. 24 fire, which authorities say is suspicious and under investigation. But the three officers prevented further tragedy by saving the life of a 6-year-old boy and successfully evacuating the burning building.

Kapusciak was the first to arrive at the scene for a well-being check on a woman crying outside her residence. He had been talking her for about five minutes when the other officers pulled up and they heard the explosion. The woman said her children were inside.

It was hard to see anything through the smoke, but as officer Lautner walked a few feet in the door of the second-floor unit, a child suddenly appeared at his side. He picked up the boy and handed him to officer Kapusciak, who carried him out of the building. Unable to re-enter the unit, the officers yelled out multiple times to see if anyone else was inside but got no response. The fire was becoming more intense, the heat was becoming unbearable, and they struggled to breathe. They helped other residents escape the three-story building, working their way down from the top floor.

Firefighters responded about 10 a.m. and extinguished the blaze in 20 to 30 minutes, though crews remained on the scene for hours to put out hot spots. Three firefighters were taken to the hospital with symptoms of heat exhaustion, and one suffered a shoulder injury.

The DuPage County coroner said gunshots are the provisional causes of death for the father and son whose bodies were recovered after the fire. Preliminary autopsy results determined they would not have been saved by further heroic efforts.

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New Engine for Prospect Heights (more)

Updated production photos of the new engine for Prospect Heights

stainless steel fire engine being built

Alexis Fire photo

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Box Alarm fire in Sycamore, 9-17-20 (more)

This from Art Zern:

A PD officer took this shot upon arrival of our E-1 with the first 2 ½” stretched but not charged yet at the commercial fire at 126 E. State Street.


fire scene at night

Sycamore PD photo

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New engine for the Evanston FD (more)

From the Evanston Fire Department Facebook page:

The EFD will host a Push-In Ceremony for new Engine 22 on Friday September 25th at 7:15AM at Station 2 located at Madison and Custer. The new engine will be blessed by our Chaplain, wet down, dried off, and pushed in by our members, a tradition dating back to the horse drawn era. Please join us as we celebrate placing new Engine 22 in service.


new Pierce fire engine in Evanston

Evanston Fire Department photo

new Pierce fire engine in Evanston

Evanston Fire Department photo

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New home for Cicero FD tower ladder

This from Dennis McGuire, Jr:

Found on Facebook 

X-Cicero, Illinois 
former Cicero IL FD tower ladder

Patrick Shoop photo

2006 E-ONE Cyclone 95' tower ladder

Larry Shapiro photo

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Libertyville Fire Department news (more)

From the Libertyville FD Facebook page:

LT461 ready to serve the community for another 20 years….

refurbished Pierce tower ladder

Libertyville FD photo

refurbished Pierce tower ladder

Libertyville FD photo


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New tower ladder for Flossmoor (more)

This from Bill Schreiber:

Training at the Flossmoor Fire Department on their Rosenbauer Commander 75Ft. Cobra mid-mount platform
Flossmoor FD Truck 19

Bill Schreiber photo

Rosenbauer Commander 75-ft Cobra mid-mount platform aerial

Bill Schreiber photo

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