Posts Tagged Snorkel

Chicago FD Still Alarm 3-23-13

This from Steve Redick:

4046 Van Buren – Saturday..I took this one in because it was advertised as a fire in a building with a red ‘X’ … this was the first example I was able to see with the new safety marking system. It’s either a red square, a square with 1 slash, or a square with an X like this one, in the order of potential danger. Interior ops have to be assesed and approved before anyone can work inside. I believe this will be a very common site on the fireground. Also got a fair shot of one of the new buggies.
Steve

Chicago Engine 44 Chicago FD trucks at fire scene

Engine 44 on a hydrant. Steve Redick photo

Chicago FD at the scene of a vacant building fire

Vacant building with new marking system for firefighter safety. Steve Redick photo

Chicago FD at the scene of a vacant building fire

Closeup of building designation. Steve Redick photo

Chicago FD at the scene of a vacant building fire

Truck 26 with a ladder to the roof. Steve Redick photo

Chicago FD at the scene of a vacant building fire

Chicago FD Engine 95

Engine 95 also had a hydrant. Steve Redick photo

Chicago FD Paramedic Field Chief 4-5-4

Chicago FD Paramedic Field Chief 4-5-4. Steve Redick photo

Chicago FD Paramedic Field Chief 4-5-4

Chicago FD Paramedic Field Chief 4-5-4. Steve Redick photo

Chicago FD at the scene of a vacant building fire

Another view of Truck 26 in Sector 1. Steve Redick photo

Chicago FD at the scene of a vacant building fire

Truck 48 setup in a vacant field. Steve Redick photo

Chicago FD Squad 2

Squad 2 was at the scene. Steve Redick photo

Chicago FD Squad 2A

Squad 2’s Snorkel. Steve Redick photoin

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MABAS 7 Swap Meet

This from Dylan Konchan:

I got pictures from the Mabas 7 swap meet today in Peotone.

Chicago FD Ward LaFrance Ranger Engine 17

Dylan Konchan photo

Peotone Fire District Snorkel

Dylan Konchan photo

MABAS Division 22 command post

Dylan Konchan photo

Peotone FIre District Sutphen engine

Dylan Konchan photo

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Vintage CFD video – Snorkels

The Chicago Civil Defense Homepage posted this video recently about Chicago Fire Commissioner Robert J. Quinn and the introduction of the Snorkel to the fire service.

 

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A Commentary: CFD apparatus history – part 2 of 3

Part 2 of a commentary by Bill Post on the Chicago Fire Department history: Part 1 can be found HERE.

Mike, I too felt that it was ridiculous for the Chicago Fire Department to be running with a ‘Snorkel Squad 3’ for over 2 years without a Snorkel assigned to it. Only for the last few months before going out of service did they correctly re-designate Snorkel Squads 2 and 3 as Rescues 2 and 3. There was a reason for that however. The simple answer would be to say that it was recommended by a consultant study known as the Maatman Report. This was only partially true as ultimately the city didn’t want to spend the money that was necessary to keep fire companies in service and to provide adequate staffing.
The City of Chicago had hired a consultant who was the head of the Illinois Institute of Technology’s Fire Science program by the name of Gerald Maatman. He also headed the National Loss Control Service Corporation. The City of Chicago had first hired him in 1963 to do a comprehensive study of the Chicago Fire Department, which included the fire stations, their locations, and the distribution of Chicago’s fire companies. The study was done in part to help Chicago raise the AIA fire insurance rating to a Class 2, which it achieved the following year. For your information, the AIA now is known as ISO and was originally known as the National Board of Fire Underwriters. The 1963/64 Maatman study was really quite good. It recommended that many new fire stations be built and that fire companies from the center city be relocated to the outlying areas of the city that had poor fire station coverage.
While there were some companies that he did recommend be taken of service, there were also some companies that he recommended to be moved into the new fire stations. He didn’t recommend any manpower reductions on the companies, plus there were even a few select fire companies that he had recommended to have a 6th man added. The report recommended that 16 engines be taken out of service from a total of 120 engines that were still in service, and that three new truck companies be added to the 60 that were in service. No Snorkels, Snorkel Squads, or squad companies were recommended to be taken out of service. Five years later (in 1968) another Maatman Report was commissioned by the city, however this time the recommendations were quite a bit different from the first (1963) report.
First let me tell you what had changed. In 1967, the Chicago Fire Department had given firefighters an additional day off (in other words they agreed to further reduce their working hours). However, the city refused to hire more men or increase the number of firefighter positions to reflect the reduction in hours. By 1967, two of the squad companies had been out of service for a few years. Squad 12 was taken out of service in 1964 to create Truck 62. Squad 7 was taken out of service in 1965 to create Snorkel Squad 3. In December of 1966 and February of 1967, Squads 1 and 2 had become Salvage Squads 1 and 2. That really wasn’t a big change as both stayed at their same locations and even had the same apparatus. They were given more salvage covers and would respond citywide on 2-11s to do salvage work. In April of 1967, Squad 3 was involved in a serious accident and the apparatus was declared a total loss. Squad Company 3 was disbanded on April 17th. Squads 6 and 13 were taken out of service on June 16th, just three months after Squad 3 was disbanded. Squads 8 and 10 were downgraded (on the same day) to one-man companies who would only respond on Still and Box Alarms with their driver. Slightly over a month later, Squad 10 was taken out of service and Squad 5 became a one-man company.
By the end of the summer, only Salvage Squads 1 and 2, and Squads 4, 9, and 11 were fully-manned squads. In early 1968, all of the squads (with the exception of Salvage Squads 1 and 2, and Squads 4 and 9) were out of service. I’m not including Snorkel Squads 1, 2, and 3 that were still in service in 1968 even though SS3 was running without a Snorkel for over a year by then. Because of the reduced hours, the manpower situation was so bad that by 1968 one wouldn’t know from day to day if an engine or truck would be running with five men or only four. The unpredictable manpower situation was another reason why the city rehired Gerald Maatman to do another study.
This new study recommended that about 3/5ths of the engine and truck companies run with only four men assigned to them. It further recommended the creation of six Flying Manpower Squads with a crew of six firefighters each to respond to still alarms supplementing the four-man companies. The remaining engines and trucks, which were located downtown, near the lakefront, and in the busy areas of the city, were to run with five-man companies. These wouldn’t normally have a Flying Manpower Squad respond with them.
There was more to the 1968 Maatman Report.  It recommended that all three Snorkel Squads be taken out of service and that only Salvage Squad 1 remain in service as the “downtown” squad company. He stated in his report that the special equipment that was carried on the Snorkel Squads could be carried on the new Flying Manpower Squads and the remaining Salvage Squad. He also had recommended that some of the equipment could be assigned to engines and trucks. He was right about that, as the fire department started equipping most of the engine companies with new multi-versals that previously were only carried on the Snorkel Squads.
The CFD also started assigning all trucks a K-12 rotary power. These saws previously were only carried on the Snorkel Squads. In the same report from 1968, the consultant recommended that one regular Snorkel Company (Snorkel 6) be taken out of service. Another recommendation was to move Snorkel 3 from Engine 84’s old house to Engine 60, which wasn’t a problem after Snorkel Squad 2 was taken out of service. Snorkel 2 was supposed to remain in service at Engine 28’s house, except they were to be given Snorkel Squad 1’s new Mack MB 55-foot Snorkel that had been delivered in 1967. Snorkel 4 was to be moved from Engine 25 (near the Loop) to Engine 67 (on the far west side) and Snorkel 7 was to be moved from Engine 55’s house to Engine Company 110. Snorkel 5 would remain at Engine 43’s house on the northwest side. The idea was to have the five remaining Snorkels located either in or near the high fire frequency areas. In those days (the late 1960s) the high fire frequency area on the south side really didn’t go much further south then 79th or 83rd Street, about as far east as Jeffrey (2000 East), and about as far west as Ashland (1600 west).
The consultant also recommended that ladder pipes be put on every truck company. There weren’t more then 25 ladder pipes in the field at the time. Having a ladder pipe on a truck allowed them to put an elevated stream into operation without having to wait for a Snorkel to arrive.

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Cicero Box Alarm 7-31-12

 

Cicero Fire Department Dollar Store fire 7-31-12

Steve Redick photo

The Cicero Fire Department requested a Box Alarm in the overnight hours of Tuesday, July 31st. Steve Redick took in the fire and submitted images with the following information:

1800 S Cicero Ave..early am..Dollar Store
This fire was held in check by sprinklers…high humidity kept the smoke conditions very low and as a result good photos were very difficult to get. I’m told a wall was breached in the large vacant commercial that made up sector 4 attached..I believe it was for inspection purposes..
The division 10 MVU was requested but as fate would have it it was oos..
Cicero Fire Department Dollar Store fire 7-31-12

Steve Redick photo

Cicero Fire Department Dollar Store fire 7-31-12

Steve Redick photo

Cicero Fire Department Dollar Store fire 7-31-12

Steve Redick photo

Cicero Fire Department Dollar Store fire 7-31-12

Steve Redick photo

Cicero Fire Department Dollar Store fire 7-31-12

Steve Redick photo

Cicero Fire Department Dollar Store fire 7-31-12

Steve Redick photo

Cicero Fire Department Dollar Store fire 7-31-12

Steve Redick photo

Cicero Fire Department Dollar Store fire 7-31-12

Steve Redick photo

Steve has a short video:

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Thoughts on CFD apparatus needs – a commentary

Thoughts from Bill Post about recent comments made regarding CFD spare apparatus for Tower Ladder 10 and Squad 1:

One of the great things about Tower Ladder 10’s location, is that they are not more than a mile and a half away from Fleet Management (the shops), so they could easily have work done on their rig whenever they wish. The oldest front line tower ladders though are three, 1996 HME/LTIs that are at Tower Ladders 21, 37, and 39, all of which are 16 years old. The CFD had been trying to replace most of their rigs within 10 to 15 years of frontline service. That said, Tower Ladder 21’s rig looks pretty good and it’s been getting it’s share of extra alarms lately. Tower ladders are listed on the city of Chicago’s official 2012 buying plan issued by the department of Procurement Services. This means that they intend to have bids requested to build them.

My concern is about the spare Snorkel that was running as Squad 1. That’s the only spare 55′ Snorkel left. I understand that it’s twin was gotten rid of over the last few years. Most readers of this site probably know by now that the CFD has been wanting to replace the three Snorkel Squads for the last few years, and that it has even been listed on Chicago’s official buying plan.

The catch, is that American LaFrance (ALF) holds the manufacturing rights to the Snorkel brand that they acquired from the old Snorkel corporation that went out of business (over 10 years ago), and ALF refuses to build any new Snorkels. The alternative is to rehab and remount an old Snorkel on a new chassis and body which several fire departments that still use Snorkels have done already. When there are fewer Snorkels out there, it becomes more difficult to even find Snorkels to rebuild and remount. 

I have heard that there may be other manufacturers that would be willing to design their own aerial similar to a "Snorkel", however it would be very expensive.  So, it would be much simpler if American LaFrance would just sell the rights to the Snorkel if not just build them again. Even though you see less of them in use, there are still a few major and several smaller fire departments that use Snorkels. The Memphis (TN) fire department had been running with two single-piece Snorkel Squads (which had been been using remounted Snorkels on newer chassis) and the Philadelphia (PA) fire department had been using two remounted full-size Snorkels. Since both Memphis and Chicago make extensive use of the smaller Snorkel Squads, it would be a good idea if they would start a class-action suit against American LaFrance to either manufacture the Snorkel or to at least let another company (who is willing to build the Snorkel) have the specs and rights to build them. The irony about this is that the Chicago Fire Department and our old repair shops is where the idea for the original Snorkel began, and our old repair shops even outfitted the original Snorkel for fire service applications. American LaFrance now owns the original Snorkel (which served as Snorkel 1 and Snorkel Squad 3) as part of their historic collection, even though they never actually built or outfitted the rig. The boom and platform were actually built by the Pitman Corporation. It really seems as if they are holding the fire service (in general) and Chicago Fire Department (in particular) hostage.

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Riverdale Fire Department apparatus updates

Dennis McGuire, Jr. tells us the following:

Riverdale has traded in their Pierce engines for twin E-Ones which went thru Fire Service.  One of the Pierce engines (831) was sold to Joplin, Missouri. The other engine (830) was supposedly sold to a department downstate.
Also the 1971 Snorkel from Oak Forest is no longer on the roster and is in the process of being sold to a business in Crestwood that has plans to rebuild it into a memorial truck.
Riverdale Fire Department Engine 831 went to Joplin MO

The engine as it looked in Riverdale.

Riverdale Fire Department Pierce engine Joplin, Missouri Fire Departemnt

The 1995 Pierce Saber repainted for Joplin, MO (X-Riverdale, IL). Fire Service, Inc. photo

 

The Toyne squad is supposed to be at Fire Service for a complete rebuild.

Riverdale Fire Department HME Toyne Squad 851

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Chicago Still Alarm 57th and Normal

Chicago Still Alarm fire 57th and Normal

The 2-1/2 story frame at 57th and Normal after the fire had been knocked down. Steve Redick photo

Steve Redick took in a fire on Thursday morning and had the following to say about it:

One of the benefits of working the goofy hours I do is being on the street at off-peak times. On the way in last night I was able to make a quick stop at this working still…2-1/2 story frame, vacant, and well involved upon CFD arrival. An exposure problem with exposure two and they were setting up the Snorkel. I arrived in pretty good time but they had already given it a good whack. Squad 5 was positioned in the vacant lot, but from I could tell was not used as a master stream. They had just gotten off the roof, but it was nice to see truck 51’s new Crimson at work. I noticed Truck 18 was running with a lettered spare..but it was a Pierce in really good shape..kind’a surprising. I only had a coupl’a minutes so I had to shoot and run….
Chicago Still Alarm fire 57th and Normal

Squad 5's Snorkel sits in a vacant lot adjacent to the fire building. Steve Redick photo

Chicago Still Alarm fire 57th and Normal Chicago Truck 51 Crimson aerial

Chicago Truck 51 had the front of the building with their new Spartan/Crimson 103' aerial. Steve Redick photo

Chicago Still Alarm fire 57th and Normal Chicago Engine 84

Engine 84 was on a hydrant next door to the fire building. Steve Redick photo

Chicago Still Alarm fire 57th and Normal

Firefighters work on the second floor of the vacant dwelling hitting hot spots and performing overhaul. Steve Redick photo

Chicago Still Alarm fire 57th and Normal Chicago Truck 51 Crimson aerial

Truck 51 from the rear shows the jack spread and reflective striping. Steve Redick photo

Chicago Still Alarm fire 57th and Normal Chicago Engine 50

Engine 50 was the second engine on the scene. Steve Redick photo

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Peotone Fire Protection District update

Another report from Bill Friedrich:

The Peotone FPD has placed two new pieces of apparatus in service. SS10, which came to them from the Normal FD has now been lettered for The Peotone FPD.

 

Peotone FPD Seagrave Snorkel

Snorkel Squad 10 - 1980 Seagrave with RPI conversion and 1,250-GPM pump with 300 gallons of water and a 50' Snorkel (formerly of Normal, IL). Bill Friedrich photo

In addition, Brush 14 was placed in service in 2011. The skid-unit for this rig came off their old brush truck.

Peotone FPD Brush unit

Peontone Brush 14 is a 2011 Ford F-550 pickup with a 125-GPM pump, 250 gallons of water and 20 gallons of foam. The unit was put together by the department. Bill Friedrich photo

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Orland apparatus photos

Scott Peterson visited the Orland Fire Protection District recently for some training and submitted photos of several rigs.

Orland Fire Protection District Engine 2 Spartan Darley

Orland Engine 2 is one of three 2008 Darley engines built with a Spartan Gladiator cab and chassis. Scott Peterson photo

Orland Fire Protection District Engine 8 Pierce Saber

Orland Engine 8 is a 1999 Pierce Saber out of Station 3 as a spare. This was formerly Engine 3. Scott Peterson photo

… and another area 55′ Snorkel!!!!!

Orland Fire Protection District Snorkel 6604 Spartan Darley

This 1988 55' Snorkel built by Darley on a Spartan Gladiator chassis is out of service. Scott Peterson photo

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