Archive for April 21st, 2023

Aurora Fire Department news

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In 2022, the Aurora Fire Department saw the highest number of calls for service in its history with 21,881 calls, nearly a 14% increase over the past five years.

By 2025, the department is looking to add a new fire station, an engine company, two new medic units, and 52 staff members. Officials were already planning a new station on the northeast side but a planned move of the casino to that part of the city solidified that need.

The department’s new 10th station is planned for a site directly behind the Chicago Premium Outlets mall at Bilter Road and Nan Street. Ground is expected to be broken this summer for the project, with the station opening next year. 

Station 4 will be relocated to the east of the Aurora Police Department on Indian Trail and will become the fire department’s administrative headquarters. The current station at 800 Michels Ave. is at the end of its life and can no longer fit most engines.

Station 9 will move from 2339 Diehl Road to a new location on Eola Road at a location to be determined between Liberty Street and North Aurora Road.

The department is aiming to break ground at the new sites for Station 4 and Station 9 in 2024.

They expects to see an additional 1,000 calls per year once the 169-home Del Webb 55-year-old and older community now being developed is complete on the city’s far southeast side, and plan to add an additional ambulance in 2025 at Station 12 to meet the expected increased in demand in that part of Aurora.

While hiring has remained a challenge because of a nationwide shortage of firefighters, the department plans to hire 26 people in its spring academy that ends in June and run an additional fall academy, bringing 10 to 15 additional hires. This will help move the department to its goal of 265 personnel by 2025.

thanks Rob

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New truck for Westmont FPD (more)

From RB:

Almost finished, 38908 100′ mid-mount tower; #WestmontFD; #FireTruck; #Pierce; #Ascendant;

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Evanston Fire Department news

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Evanston Fire Department ambulances will be equipped with LUCAS – Chest Compression Systems thanks to a $56,000 donation from the Evanston First Responders Foundation. The local nonprofit designated funding for three LUCAS devices, one for each of the department’s ambulances, in honor of Oliver Brown Leopold, a graduate of the EFD’s fire explorer program.

LUCAS, which stands for Lund University Cardiopulmonary Assist System, is a portable chest compression system that allows firefighters to keep up chest compressions without interruptions, significantly increasing the patient’s chance of survival.

Brown Leopold was the youngest member of the foundation’s board of directors when he died December 2021 at the age of 19 from what his family described as an apparent suicide.

Speaking at a memorial service, Evanston Fire Department Captain Megan Kamarchevakul remembered Brown Leopold as a natural leader who radiated positive energy from the time he started with the fire explorers when he was 13. He recalled the time Brown Leopold purchased the department’s reserve ladder truck.

“He had everything lined up, he had insurance, storage, upkeep, the only problem was he couldn’t drive it,” Kamarchevakul said. After the teen got his permit, the captain helped him learn to drive it.

Brown Leopold graduated early from Evanston Township High School in order to become an emergency medical technician during the first waves of the coronavirus pandemic, working in an emergency room and on an ambulance — later taking a gap year so that he could become a paramedic.

Since its founding in 2013, the Evanston First Responders Foundation has distributed grants to allow the department to buy gear for the fire explorers program, acquire a police dog, funding community CPR programs and mannequins, and bought bike helmets to distribute during the Bike the Ridge event in which cyclists are allowed to legally ride on Ridge Avenue for a few hours every year.

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Fire Service news

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Experts from General Motors and the Illinois Fire Service Institute lead training at the MABAS Readiness Center in Wheeling where firefighters learn in the classroom before they face a fire involving an electric vehicle. 

There are different responses and characteristics of lithium-ion battery fires than there are to internal combustion engine, or gas-powered vehicles. “The orange cabling or the orange components. Those indicate, as an industry standard, high-voltage components that we don’t want customers or anyone to pull on or cut,” said a staff engineer for GM.

“A lot of people were very afraid of putting water on an electrified vehicle because it’s water and electricity, and they’re under the misconception that the two don’t mix, when in all actuality, the most important thing we need to be using on these fires is water” according to an instructor with the Illinois Fire Service Institute.

GM has been on the road all over the country since June of 2022 doing these trainings as EVs get more and more popular. In fact, many market analysts predict by the end of this decade, at least 40 percent of cars on the road will be electric. 

The training is free to all emergency personnel. So far, GM and the Illinois Fire Service Institute have traveled to more than 20 cities for these training sessions. 

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