Archive for February, 2018

Mundelein Fire Department news

Excerpts from the

Despite opposition from residents and current and former firefighters, Mundelein officials are reorganizing the fire department’s command staff and reducing the number of lieutenants overseeing each shift. The change was proposed because administrators believe the department is top heavy. The reorganization will save the village about $149,000 annually in salary and overtime cost reductions.

The village board voted 4-1 late Monday to make the changes. Robin Meier was the only trustee who opposed the move. Trustee Dawn Abernathy was absent. Meier said she opposed the move because officials have received a lot of what she called conflicting information from people on both sides of the issue. She also said she would have liked more information on the proposal.

The department now has six shift lieutenants, two per shift. Under the village’s plan, one of those lieutenants will be promoted to a vacant battalion chief post, and another will be put in charge of training, public education, and other administrative tasks.

That will leave four shift lieutenants, one of whom is expected to retire soon and won’t be replaced. At that point, the department will have three shift lieutenants — and that’s the village administration’s goal. The changes return the department to a command structure it had in 2008.

“After the restructuring, it will be two supervisors per shift to manage six firefighters,” Lobaito said. “We are confident that our fire department supervisors are fully capable of managing three firefighters.”

Village leaders also plan to hire three additional firefighters over time to bolster the staff.

The board’s vote followed hours of public and closed-door discussion about the proposal. Several audience members voiced opposition before the votes, including former Chief Tim Sashko, former Deputy Fire Marshal Mark Gaunky. Firefighter Brett Clark, the president of the firefighters’ union, called the change needless and dangerous. The union has filed an unfair labor practice complaint with the state labor department.

Sashko, who oversaw the department from 2007 to 2015 and now is president of the Lake County Board of Health, said he wouldn’t have allowed the change if he was still chief.

Mayor Steve Lentz said the notion that the change will decrease public safety is absolutely wrong.

Mundelein Public Safety Director Eric Guenther, who oversees fire department operations, supported the moves. But he also said he understands how they can cause an emotional response.

“I am confident that these adjustments will not negatively impact the service provided to the citizens of Mundelein and will further stabilize the department as it continues to grow and move forward,” Guenther said.

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New engine for River Grove (more)

This from Keith Grzadziel:

These were pics I took last year when FSI brought this Typhoon demo over by us, which ended up being sold to River Grove

E-ONE Typhoon fire engine with Cyclone grill

Keith Grzadziel photo

E-ONE fire engine with low hose bed

Keith Grzadziel photo

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Working fire in Wheeling, 2-27-18

Wheeling firefighters were called to 30 Schoenbeck Road Tuesday morning (2/27/18) for a reported house fire. The first arriving engine reported light smoke showing and went to investigate. They found a portion of the rear wood deck burning near the house. The fire was extinguished quickly without damage to the home.

Rosenbauer Commander fire engine on scene

Larry Shapiro photo

Wheeling FD fire engine with hose attached

Larry Shapiro photo

Rosenbauer Commander Cobra tower ladder on scene

Larry Shapiro photo

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New engine for Elmhurst (more)

From the Pierce Flickr site:

Elmhurst Fire Department, IL 31390

Elmhurst FD Engine 1

Pierce composite

thanks Al

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Lisle-Woodridge Fire District news

Excerpts from the

Edward Hospital has awarded its 2017 EMS (Emergency Medical Services) Run of the Year to the Lisle-Woodridge Fire District – Medic 52 and Ladder 53.

Fire district personnel were recognized for care they provided to a patient who was initially treated for an allergic reaction to medication, but who paramedics noticed was exhibiting symptoms of a heart attack. After being taken to Edward Hospital, it was discovered one of the patient’s coronary arteries was 100 percent blocked. Following treatment that included the placement of a stent to keep the artery open, the patient left the hospital a few days later.

Those honored at a breakfast and ceremony at Edward Hospital on Feb. 20. included Lt. Jim Kensel, Firefighter/Medics Aaron Conrad, Eric Fitzpatrick and Michael Rohlicek, and Emergency Medical Technician Dave Fazio.

The event capped off the year-long Run of the Quarter program in which area paramedics are honored for exceptional ambulance runs. In the Run of the Quarter program, the Edward EMS Team reviews ambulance runs by pre-hospital providers and selects one to be recognized every three months based on the following criteria:

–Excellent communication from the field that resulted in the timely delivery of pertinent clinical information to the Edward Emergency Department staff
–Clear and thorough documentation
–Superior clinical assessment skills that resulted in accurate recognition of a clinical situation
–Behavior exceeding the call of duty in the field
–Superior partnership and teamwork with Edward Hospital

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As seen around … Lynwood

This from Chi-Town Fire Photos:

Lynwood Engine 132 – 2007 Sutphen Shield 1500/1000 X-Plainfield Brownsburg, IN

2007 Sutphen Monarch fire engine

Lynwood Engine 132 – 2007 Sutphen Shield 1500/1000 X-Brownsburg, IN
. Chi-Town Fire Photos

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Mundelein Fire Department news

Excerpts from the

The Mundelein village board went ahead with the sale of one of the department’s ladder trucks despite criticism from residents and even a former fire chief.

People packed Monday night’s village board meeting to oppose the ladder truck sale as well as plans to restructure the fire department’s command staff. Critics included former Fire Chief Tim Sashko, who lives in Mundelein and spoke at length about the potential hazards of the two proposals.

Sashko was especially upset about the plan to sell the ladder truck to a department in Kentucky for $360,000. Although it’s rarely used, Sashko said the truck is an important piece of equipment that contains much more potentially lifesaving gear than just a tall ladder.

Dumping the truck means Mundelein firefighters will have to rely on neighboring departments in Wauconda or Libertyville to send their ladder trucks to an emergency in Mundelein, Sashko said, and the extra travel time could cost lives.

As for the proposed plan to reduce the number of lieutenants in the department to four from six, Sashko said the department is understaffed and stressed the need for a strong command staff.

Brett Clark, a Mundelein firefighter who’s the president of the International Association of Fire Fighters Local 4786, called the proposed staffing change dangerous and ill-advised.

Village officials have said eliminating lieutenant positions will save the village money when it comes to salary and overtime costs.

Clark called the potential savings a joke.

“We do not feel safe,” said Clark, whose union has filed an unfair labor practice complaint over the issue.

In response, Mayor Steve Lentz blasted Clark’s position as a union leader. “When a union president starts talking about safety, take your hand, put it on your wallet and hold tight. Because that’s what they’re after,” Lentz said. Lentz later apologized for the comment.

The village board hadn’t yet voted on the command staff restructuring late Monday night.

thanks Scott

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New engine for the East Joliet Fire Protection District (more)

Updated production photos of the new engine for the East Joliet FPD being built by Ferrara

fire engine being built for the East Joliet FPD

Ferrara Fire Apparatus photo

fire engine being built for the East Joliet FPD

Ferrara Fire Apparatus photo

fire engine being built for the East Joliet FPD

Ferrara Fire Apparatus photo

fire engine being built for the East Joliet FPD

Ferrara Fire Apparatus photo

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Elgin Fire Department news (more)

Excerpts from the

An engine ran out of water before a second engine crew was able to re-establish a water supply to fight a fatal fire in Elgin this year. Elgin Fire Chief David Schmidt said that, according to radio communications, firefighters at the scene were without water for 77 seconds while trying to extinguish the blaze in a mobile home in which a 63-year-old man died.

 “There are multiple variables happening on each and every call that affect the outcome of an incident,” Schmidt said.

Department guidelines recommend the first engine use the water it carries, and when the second engine arrives, it connects a line from a hydrant to the first engine, creating a continuous flow of water, Schmidt said.

According to Elgin Fire Department documents, a neighbor called in the fire just before 6:42 p.m. Jan. 21. Records state it took 77 seconds from dispatch for Engine 5 to bring a crew of three to the burning home along the 400 block of Sadler Avenue. The dispatcher also sent an ambulance from Station 5, a truck and battalion chief from Station 1, and engines from Stations 4 and 2. The second engine arrived 7 minutes, 29 seconds after the dispatch.

Both Schmidt and Joe Galli, president of Elgin Association of Firefighters Union IAFF Local 439, said it is unusual for an engine to run out of water before a second source has been established. Galli told Elgin city officials this month that recent shift staffing cuts contributed to a delay in response to the incident.

Ken Willette of the National Fire Protection Agency said it sounds like the department followed accepted protocols in attacking the fire. He also said mobile homes are some of the worst fires to attack because of their construction materials.

After that first engine arrived, its three firefighters attached a hose to the engine and began putting water on the blaze. The two-man crew from Ambulance 5, the second unit on the scene, attached a second hose to the engine.

The reports note that when firefighters from Station 1 arrived, they assumed they were going to be responding in Engine 1, but CAD/Communications dispatched Truck 1. Truck 1’s firefighters were assigned to enter and search the home with Ambulance 5 firefighters as Engine 5 firefighters worked to extinguish the fire underneath the home and around the entrances.

“Because this was early in the new deployment, it appears there was a little uncertainty on the apparatus recommendation,” Schmidt said. “Our philosophy for the deployment change was to get two engines and one truck on the scene as quickly as possible.”

Firefighters ran out of water, though the fire continued to burn under the home and through the floor, vents and a wall, the report states, and that delayed crews from entering the building.

When Engine 4 arrived, some of its crew worked to connect a hose to a hydrant at Olive Street and Sadler. Engine 4 crew members also assisted in putting out the fire underneath the mobile home after the water was connected.

“There is no way of telling if the resident would have survived had we been given the opportunity to get inside sooner. Running out of water stalled the rescue effort,” Galli said.

Schmidt said Station 6 on West Chicago Street normally would have sent the second engine, but that crew was responding to a medical call. That put Engine 4 from the firehouse near Elgin Community College next in line to respond.

The fire was declared under control 13 minutes, 10 seconds after the 911 call.

Galli said the $700,000 cut to the department’s budget affected how events played out that night. Schmidt disagreed and said Galli was politicizing the death.

“Safety remains a top priority of the city, not only for the community but for our firefighter personnel as well. The city is and remains safe, and to suggest otherwise is misleading,” Schmidt said.

While the National Fire Protection Agency recommends four-man crews on a fire engine, having three on an engine and two in an ambulance is acceptable, based on the organization’s “1710” standard. Elgin also arrived well within the agency’s standards, he said.

“The first arriving engine and ambulance is making the determination to go with an aggressive attack with two hose lines. … They were addressing it as taught at the national fire academy,” Willette said. “The first thing is life, the second thing is incident stabilization, and the third is property conservation.”

The first engine on the scene could have chosen to immediately attach to the hydrant, but Willette noted that making that choice when another engine is en route is hard to make.

“The fact of the matter is we responded quicker to the incident on Sadler Avenue than the industry guidelines provide for an effective response force,” Schmidt said.

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New fire station in Aurora (more)

This from Dave Weaver:

2/23/18 AURORA – Aurora FD Station 7 Grand Opening Open House 824 Kenilworth Pl. – Video by Dave Weaver


Excerpts From the City of Aurora:

The Aurora Fire Department hosted a two-day Grand Opening Celebration for its newest fire station.
A Ribbon Cutting Ceremony was held on Friday, February 23 at 10:30 a.m. for Fire Station 7, located at 824 Kenilworth Place. 
Replacing the former station that was built in 1957, the new Fire Station 7 is a state-of-the-art 1 0,325 sq. ft. facility. The Aurora Fire Department has put into service its seventh Advance Life Support paramedic unit at the new location – a first for the area.
The 3-bay station has such auxiliary spaces as a watch room, conference room, storage rooms, workshop and fitness area. The living areas include officers’ quarters, bunk rooms, kitchen area, dining area and day room area.

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