Posts Tagged Fire Chief Jim Bodony

Medal of Valor awarded to Glen Ellyn firefighter

The Daily Herald has an article about a Glen Ellyn firefighter being honored for bravery:

Chris Guare, a Glen Ellyn volunteer firefighter, received a Medal of Valor from The 100 Club of DuPage County for his attempt to save a man’s life during a May 10 apartment fire in Glen Ellyn.

Guare and other members of the Glen Ellyn Volunteer Fire Department responded to an early morning Duane Street fire that was confined to a single apartment of a three-story building. Once the door to the apartment was forced open by firefighters, oxygen flooded the apartment and the [room]¬†became [fully-involved.] Guare, who had been using a thermal imaging device to scan the apartment, saw the occupant identified as Abdullah Rantissi, lying on the floor and rushed in to save him. Members of Guare’s crew used hoses to battle the fire in order to give [him]¬†time to reach the occupant and drag him out of the building, Guare said.

“Chris crawled in on his belly, got the victim and was able to remove the victim from the apartment and out to the paramedics,” Chief Jim Bodony said. “Single-handedly, he was the one who went in. It was pretty difficult and he put his life on the line for this guy.”

In addition to pulling the resident out of his apartment, the married father of three drove the victim to the burn unit at Loyola University Medical Center while paramedics treated his injuries. The victim later succumbed to the injuries sustained in the fire, Guare said.

Although Guare was the one to rush into the burning apartment, he said he could not have done so if he did not have the support and assistance of the other firefighters on his truck. Guare said he was honored to receive the award, but added he would not be considered for it without the assistance of the other firefighters on his engine.

While Guare was singled out for the Medal of Valor, Lt. Craig Eldridge, the public information officer for the volunteer fire department, said the other three firefighters who fought the apartment fire, Assistant Chief Jeff Buccola, Lt. Leigh Mikolajczyk and Firefighter Matt Andris. Along with Guare, will each receive a departmental honor for their efforts during a Glen Ellyn Village Council meeting later this month.

thanks Dan

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Village raises fees to assist Glen Ellyn VFD

The Daily Herald has an article outlining an increase in ambulance fees in Glen Ellyn.

Glen Ellyn is preparing to raise ambulance fees for nonresidents and to charge for some emergency calls it previously handled for free.

Trustees this week unanimously approved three changes to the fee structure to take effect June 15, 2014, with an eye toward offsetting rising costs.

“The fees play an important role in allowing the village to deliver exceptional (emergency medical service),” Assistant Village Manager Al Stonitsch said. “While they don’t produce a profit, they do help defray some of the costs.”

Officials, for example, said the village spent $1,055,372 in fiscal 2012-13 to provide ambulance service but collected only $744,544 in fees.

Under the first change approved this week, nonresident fees for two types of advanced life-support services will increase by $103 and $219, respectively, from the previous rates of $1,097 and $1,181. Resident fees and fees for basic life-support will remain at their current rates.

A second change is the adoption of two new fee categories for calls where patients are treated but not transported, and for citizen assist calls. The village does not currently charge for such calls, but noted they account for roughly 25 percent of ambulance responses each year.

In researching 18 comparable communities and fire districts, officials found many already are charging for such “treat/no transport” calls. Naperville, near the lower end, charges $50 for residents and $100 for nonresidents. The cost in Hinsdale is $450 and $650, respectively.

Village officials recommended the board adopt fees of $100 and $150 for “treat/no transport” calls and $50 and $100, respectively, for citizen assists.

In adding the fees for citizen assists, officials hope to discourage calls that don’t require an ambulance, Fire Chief Jim Bodony said.

Bodony said those calls frequently involve elderly residents who may have fallen out of bed at home or at a senior care facility.

“We get the call because they’ve fallen and just need the fire department to get them back in bed,” he said.

Village officials said adding a fee would prevent senior care facilities from using EMS as a backup when they don’t have adequate staff.

“I don’t know about the other trustees, but I would favor a higher nonresident rate for the senior facilities that are basically using the paramedics as their backup because they don’t want to pay for the nighttime help,” Trustee Tim Elliott said.

To soften the impact of the citizen assist fee, particularly among low-frequency users, village officials had proposed a “three strike” rule in which patients who receive citizen assist service would not be billed until the fourth occurrence.

The board eventually tabled that proposal.

Trustees also approved a third change to adopt an annual fee escalation clause that will increase by 2 percent or the Consumer Price Index, whichever is lower. That change will begin in June 2016.

thanks Dan

A previous post on funding for the Glen Ellyn VFD.


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