Posts Tagged Hanover Park Fire Chief Craig Haigh

Hanover Park Fire Department news

Excerpts from the

More than half of firefighters’ line-of-duty deaths are caused not by external dangers such as flames or building collapses, but from cardiovascular reactions to the physical stress of the job, experts say.

Hanover Park Fire Chief Craig Haigh believes his department can help bring down those numbers as the main test subjects of a 21-month national research project.

It’s aim is to improve know-how and equipment to better handle internal pressures on the heart, lungs, brain, and core body temperature during emergency calls that now result in 50 percent to 60 percent of firefighters’ line-of-duty deaths, according to statistics compiled by the U.S. Fire Administration.

Since January, and continuing through September 2018, all 52 active Hanover Park firefighter-paramedics have agreed to wear a monitor that measures their physiological responses during each 24-hour shift.

Most people don’t understand what firefighters are really enduring when they’re at a fire or similar emergency, said the study’s lead investigator, Professor Denise Smith of Skidmore College in New York. She’s sampled enough firefighting gear to recognize there’s no comparison between traditional athletic endeavors and the total physical exhaustion firefighters face. The gear firefighters wear typically weighs 30 to 50 pounds, while the equipment they may carry at any given time can add 25 more pounds.

Haigh said several factors contributed to his department’s having a unique role in the research … the Hanover Park Fire Department has just the right characteristics for the project. The department is large enough to provide a sufficient number and variety of calls for the study, yet small enough to secure 100 percent compliance among employees.

That reflects the excellent labor relations Hanover Park enjoys with its firefighter-paramedics. Many unions would balk at the intensive monitoring and sharing of personal medical information the research requires.

SMARTER stands for Science, Medicine, Research, Technology for Emergency Responders. The project, funded by a $1.5 million grant from the Department of Homeland Security, continues the research Smith has been engaged in for 21 years.

Among the breakthroughs it’s already discovered is recognition that firefighters need rehab while on a call. That means making sure firefighters emerging from a burning structure take time to rest, rehydrate, lower their body temperature, and take nourishment.

The study also shows firefighters are getting much too hot wearing heavy structure-fire gear for conditions that probably warrant a different type of protection.

A long-running goal of equipment manufacturers has been to make firefighting gear lighter, more breathable and less restrictive, while providing all the protection required. Smith hopes her research helps achieve that goal.

The SMARTER Project also aims to improve the portability of devices used to measure the presence and concentration of toxic particulates in the air, so firefighters know better when to use their breathing gear even in the absence of visible smoke.

Agencies and organizations supporting the SMARTER Project include the University of Illinois Fire Service Institute, the University of California at Los Angeles, the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine, the Fire Protection Research Foundation, National Fallen Firefighters Foundation, Globe Manufacturing Co., Zephyr Medtronic, and the International Association of Firefighters.

thanks Dan

Tags: ,

Ontarioville Volunteer FD gets historic plaque

Ontarioville Volunteer Fire Department

In the 1920s, a service station housed the fire trucks of Hanover Park and became the village’s first fire department.

Excerpts from

In the 1920s, a service station at 2064 W. Lake Street housed the fire trucks of Hanover Park and became the village’s first fire department. That location, where Suburban Tire Auto Repair Center is now located, was designated with a heritage marker for its historic significance.

Hanover Park Fire Chief Craig A. Haigh and more than 50 people attended, as local officials unveiled a commemorative plaque at the site.

Called the Ontarioville Volunteer Fire Department, the unit was established April 3, 1928 with a $282 collection from the community.

Hanover Park Fire Lieutenant Jim Hite said he was about six years old when he would visit the location with his late father, Glen Hite, a volunteer firefighter.

“Back then they would talk about an eight minute response time from here to Sherman Hospital,” Hite said. “Now we can’t even make it across town in that time,” he joked, as four lanes of traffic during the rush hour event on West Lake Street passed by.

Along with less congested traffic back then, Hite recalled a 1962 Harvester fire truck at the station that he actually saw there again in 1982, when he joined the department. “It wasn’t a response vehicle, but it was used in parades and things,” he said.

These days, the Village of Hanover Park has a full time fire protection department and still uses volunteers to staff the rehabilitation unit.

thanks Dan

Tags: , , , ,

Hanover Park Volunteer FD to have historic plaque

Excerpts from the

Hanover Township will dedicate a heritage marker Oct. 20 to honor the first volunteer fire department organized in Hanover Park. The marker will include a plaque that describes the location’s significance and a brief history of department.

The original volunteer department was at 2064 West Lake St., currently home to Suburban Tire Auto Repair Center.

The dedication begins at 6 p.m., and Hanover Township Supervisor Brian McGuire, Hanover Park Village President Rod Craig and Hanover Park Fire Chief Craig Haigh will be in attendance.

Tags: , ,

Hanover Park wants to absorb fire district within village borders

The Daily Herald has an article about Hanover Park officials wanting to consolidate municipal areas covered by fire districts.

Hanover Park officials are in the early stages of negotiations with the neighboring Bloomingdale Fire Protection District to transfer a largely industrial area — and the tax revenue it generates — into the village’s fire jurisdiction. Both sides are determining the potential boundaries and the impact on their bottom lines.

“You just can’t come in and take a bunch of tax dollars from another taxing body because they’ve made decisions based on that revenue,” Hanover Park Fire Chief Craig Haigh said.

The exact amount of revenue at stake was not known Monday, but if both sides agree, officials could phase out the tax dollars, so Bloomingdale isn’t hit with a loss all at once. Haigh expects no effect on manpower or apparatus for either agency.

Bloomingdale Fire Chief Jeff Janus said the overriding goal is to ensure that residents are protected.

… Haigh said Hanover Park only is interested in a voluntary exchange and has no plans to launch legal proceedings, in which the village would have to prove in court that its fire department could serve the properties better than Bloomingdale.

In 2000, the village formed its own fire department and assumed operations of the defunct Hanover Park Fire Protection District. Since then, officials have reached deals to disconnect land from other fire protection districts that also fall within the municipal boundaries.

The coveted areas surround two intersections: Gary Avenue and Lake Street, and County Farm and Schick roads. The land has long been incorporated into the village of Hanover Park. The move would boost efficiencies, Haigh said. Hanover Park police and Bloomingdale cover the areas in question — using different radio frequencies.

While the volume of emergency calls to the department routinely breaks records — the number is expected to hit nearly 4,000 this year, the chief said — fire losses in dollars have dropped significantly. Haigh attributes the decline to the reorganization.

Folding the areas into Hanover Park’s department also would eliminate a “dual inspection process,” Haigh said. In 2011, Hanover Park fire took over building inspections previously run out of the village’s community development department. The department’s inspectors check businesses for village code compliance and review permit requests for new reconstruction, among other jobs. But business in the areas involved in the negotiations are visited by both Hanover Park and Bloomingdale inspectors, who evaluate them against fire and life safety standards.

Officials hope to reach a decision by the fall, before the district and the village set their property tax levies.

Tags: , , , , , ,