Excerpts from Chicago.cbslocal.com:

A video about the shortage at the federal fire department at Naval Station Great Lakes, and how that shortage is affecting surrounding communities.

On Tuesday, CBS 2’s Tara Molina took concerns to our elected officials. She learned that members of Congress are also asking the Navy why the shortage, and the issues it is creating, are not being addressed. Firefighters say the federal government is not listening to them, and to the Navy Region Mid-Atlantic’s request for a schedule change.

The Great Lakes Fire Department is 12 people short, with more headed out the door – and they’re exhausted according to Brian Pagliaroni – a Great Lakes firefighter/paramedic, and president of the IAFF Local F-37. Often times, firefighters at Great Lakes are working five days in a row, 120 hours straight to make up for the number of people who’ve left and are gearing up to leave. And when they can’t make a minimum, the Great Lakes Fire Department is pulling first responders firefighter/paramedics from communities such as North Chicago, Libertyville, and Waukegan.

Most federal firehouses have recently adopted an alternative work schedule that allows firefighters more rest between shifts, but the Navy Region Mid-Atlantic, which Great Lakes Fire belongs to, is one of few federal firefighting regions that have not changed their schedule.

Twelve members of Congress sent the Navy a letter asking why there has been no fix at any of the stations.

In the letter to Rear Admiral Charles W. Rock, commander of the Navy Region Mid-Atlantic, the members of Congress asked the following questions:

    • “How many firefighters at non-(Alternative Work Schedule) Mid-Atlantic stations have transferred or requested to be transferred to Fire Departments employing an AWS?”
    • “How much did the federal government pay in overtime pay to firefighters based at NRMA stations in 2018?”
    • “Has your department conducted a study on an AWS of 48 hours on, 72 hours off? If so, please submit as part of your response.”
    • “Has your department conducted a study on an AWS of 48 hours on, 49 hours off? If so, please submit as part of your response.”
    • “If an AWS has proven successful at a region, has your department taken steps to analyze if that AWS could be applied to the NRMA region?”


thanks Max

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