http://localhost:4503/content/fe/en/blogs/blognetwork/art-goodrich.html2015-12-17T03:39:03.747ZFE Blog Network - Art "ChiefReason" Goodrich Adobe Experience ManagerTrustees; Train Hard or Go Home!noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div class="MsoNormal"><b><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span></u></b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">You heard me!</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Don</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t come here expecting accommodations or special considerations.</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">You</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">re a grunt just like the rest of us. Time to pay your dues.</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">You can</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t be on top of your game if you don</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t train.</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">You can</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t extend your reach or maximize your effectiveness, unless you are willing to put your blood and sweat into it.</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">You don</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t have the first idea of what I</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">m talking about, do you?</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">You were never a firefighter, were you?</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Were </span></i><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">you</span></i><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"> 'appointed</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"> by your buddies on the city council or the county board?</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Oh; you are one of those whose ego has to be fed by </span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">new</span></i><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"> </span></i><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">challenges</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">.</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">You don</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t mind making decisions that affects other </span></i><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">peoples</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"> lives, as long as you have tort immunity, huh?</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">ll let you in on a little secret, Braveheart; I came up through a department that was run by your kind.</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Your playbook, </span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">How to</span></i><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"> Say No to Everything Except Free </span></i><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Meals</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"> has served you and your cronies well, but it has left your fire departments underfunded, under-prepared,under-manned and has left you </span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">under</span></i><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">-</span></i><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">educated</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">.</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">You have spent all of the tax money on real estate for a fire station that will never be built in your lifetime, paid attorney fees for </span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">expert</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"> advice that cost more than the entire fire department was paid for calls last year and the hotel bill at the conference where trustees are supposed to attend seminars while the wives go </span></i><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">to </span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">luncheons</span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">; except the </span></i>'<i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">seminars</span></i><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"> were hospitality rooms with an open bar.</span></i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</i></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">So; what did you learn? What knuggets (sic) of knowledge did you take back to share?</span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Let me bring you up to speed.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">First of all; if it were up to me, ALL trustees in the state of Illinois(you got to start small) would be elected.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Why?</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Because, when I ran our department as chief, I had way too many problems with our appointed trustees. None of the three knew anything about firefighters kill sets, the training required, the laws governing fire districts or of the funding needed.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">They only knew how to say </span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">NO</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"> and that cost me hundreds of dollars of my own money on top of the taxes that I paid. It wasn</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t enough that I volunteered, but I had to pay for the privilege!</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Don</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t worry, though; there were plenty of firefighters just like me.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The strangle-hold that gripped our department was finally broken in the early 1990</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">s when we petitioned to have our trustees elected and then elected three, new trustees. The survival skills that we learned as firefighters served us well, in that it taught us to mitigate even the toughest hazards, which in our case was ending the reign of the Good Ole Boys, who wouldn</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t raise the tax rate, even though we didn</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t have enough turnout gear to outfit everyone, kept the thermostat at the fire station on 50 degrees in the winter, refused to pay for training, went into debt for a new fire station that would house trucks that were all at least 20 years old-plus with no new money saved to buy a new one, paid for bad advice and threaten to kick us off if we dared to question them!</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">If I sound bitter, I</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">m not.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">m BETTER.<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Why is it that, as firefighters, you accept that you may have to risk your lives to serve the public, but are afraid to stand up to tyrannical trustees-mere mortals?</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I realized early on that our trustees did not have the same commitment,goals or attitudes of their fire department. They thought that the fire department and fire trustees were somehow separate and </span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">different</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">. </span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">What</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">s wrong</span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"> with that picture?</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">When I go to trustee seminars and conferences, the conversation will usually gravitate to </span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">issues</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">. You should see the looks on the faces of the other trustees when I tell them that I</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">m elected. Their eyes will actually cross when I tell them that I was the fire chief and started the petition to have our trustees elected rather than appointed. You see; they threatened me one too many times. It was literally them or me and I knew I wasn</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t going anywhere.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">And now?</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">m president of the board of trustees and am totally committed to being the best trustee that I can be; just like I was committed to being the best firefighter and chief that I could be. There is that same commitment to training.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">And though I don</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t always agree with the other trustees or firefighters,they at least know that I will give everything its due regard, research it if I have questions and make an informed decision.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I will continue to learn more about finding additional revenue streams,the ever-changing laws that govern fire protection districts, the newest life-saving equipment that is available, the Freedom of Information Act, the Open Meetings Act and find new ways to attract and to retain firefighters.Money will ALWAYS be spent protecting the firefighters first and that means training and equipment that they need to keep them safe when they are called upon.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">And if you are a trustee and you aren</span>'<span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">t doing the same, then you need to come into the 21<sup>st</sup></span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">century, buy a computer with Internet service, a cell phone and learn to lead by example. Lose the entitlement attitude and serve your firefighters and community with the same selfless attitude as your firefighters.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">If not, then go home!</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</div> <div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">TCSS.</span></div> <div class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span>&nbsp;</b></div> <div class="blogger-post-footer"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article</span></b>'<b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of </span></b><a><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">www.fireengineering.com</span></b></a><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.</span></b></div> tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-13288463653130428642012-04-06T00:59:00.001Z2012-04-09T13:29:49.228ZFirefighters in Dresses Hailed as Heroes?noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<br /><div class="MsoNormal"><a href="http://youtu.be/evN_Y749UFQ"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">http://youtu.be/evN_Y749UFQ</span></a></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">By now, youhave undoubtedly seen the video.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Accordingto wctrib.com, the two Sedan, MN volunteer firefightersoccasionally wear dresses to raise funds for their volunteer fire department.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">”The groupof volunteers were waiting in line in preparation for Padua’s St. Patrick’s DayParade on Saturday when a fire erupted in a truck and the firefighters went towork”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Volunteerfirefighters Ted Aubart and Ben Terhaar, one wearing green and the otherwearing red evening gowns are seen manning the hose to extinguish the vehiclefire.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Yes; thevideo has gone viral and it has made the rounds at all of the major newsoutlets. This morning on Fox News, the news anchor described the pair as “heroes”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Now; backin the day, when I was new to the ways of firefighting, it was not uncommon forus to tackle fires dressed only in our “street clothes”. It was part necessityand part stupidity. I say “part necessity” because back then, we didn’t haveenough bunker gear to outfit everyone. You were lucky to find a pair of bootsthat fit. I say “part stupidity” for obvious reasons. Like most; we learnedfrom our mistakes and lived to tell about it.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Severalfire service websites and bloggers have taken this story and ran with it. Somehave made light of it, while others have pointed out the obvious safetyconcerns of firefighters not properly attired in full turnout gear with SCBA.Is this a department that believes that it is safe to fight vehicle fires withoutproper gear? Do they believe that smoke and fire from a burning vehicle issomehow different than “other” smoke and fire? What about polyvinylchloride,hydrogen cyanide and carbon monoxide? Were they wearing heels or pumps? Didthey have matching clutch purses?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Volunteerfire departments have been battling image problems for how long? I mean; it’sone thing to dress up like Liza Minelli and sing Broadway tunes in the privacyof your own home, but to do it in public? The money would have to be right; Ican tell you that.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I’m not toofond of circus clowns, but men running around in evening gowns with a big hosein their hands is a nightmare from Hell. The one in the red dress was spot on,but the guy in the green dress clashed big time with the color of the firetruck. So, the guy in the red was completely out of touch with the blarney, butgets kudos for accessorizing with a red fire truck. The guy in the green showedhis Irish, but looked so gauche with the rest of his ensemble.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">And wherewas the chief? Was he standing just off camera in a dazzling, white Versaceevening dress?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Had theygone strapless, I would have scary images running around inside my head of themtanning nude so as not to get tan lines. However; there would have been noconcern for straps slipping off of the shoulder had they chosen to gostrapless.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Wear your air and hide your backhair!</span></i></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Now, I comeback to my original question: what was so heroic about two guys in eveninggowns squirting water on a burning truck?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I can tellyou this: you won’t see this kind of “class” at FDIC.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">The opinions and views expressed arethose of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason.They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.blogger.com/www.fireengineering.com">www.fireengineering.com</a>,Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. Allarticles by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot bereproduced in any form without expressed permission.</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"></span></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-1717992268306186073?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-17179922683061860732012-03-22T00:41:00.001Z2012-04-06T12:17:12.247ZRescuing the Ladynoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:WordDocument> <w:View>Normal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:PunctuationKerning/> <w:ValidateAgainstSchemas/> <w:SaveIfXMLInvalid>false</w:SaveIfXMLInvalid> <w:IgnoreMixedContent>false</w:IgnoreMixedContent> <w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText>false</w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText> <w:Compatibility> <w:BreakWrappedTables/> <w:SnapToGridInCell/> <w:WrapTextWithPunct/> <w:UseAsianBreakRules/> <w:DontGrowAutofit/> </w:Compatibility> <w:BrowserLevel>MicrosoftInternetExplorer4</w:BrowserLevel> </w:WordDocument></xml><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:LatentStyles DefLockedState="false" LatentStyleCount="156"> </w:LatentStyles></xml><![endif]--><!--[if !mso]><img src="http://img2.blogblog.com/img/video_object.png" style="background-color: #b2b2b2; " class="BLOGGER-object-element tr_noresize tr_placeholder" id="ieooui" data-original-id="ieooui" /><style>st1\:*{behavior:url(#ieooui) }</style><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 10]><style> /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;}</style><![endif]--><br /><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Oh, whereto begin.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">As ifthings weren’t already bad enough in Illinois,I read today where my state is the third most corrupt state in the nation. Chicago has thedistinction of being named as the number one most corrupt city in the nation.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">For many ofus who have lived in Illinois our entire lives, this doesn’t exactly come as arevelation, but it is very frustrating after spending so much time in politicswith the idea that we were going to change it.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I want tosay that our politics in this state isn’t reflective of the people who livehere, but unfortunately, it is people (real and imagined) who vote for thejamokes that get into state politics long enough to muck things up, pleadguilty, serve their sentence and then become lobbyists when they get out. Ourmost recent poster child for Illinoispolitics comes courtesy of the Illinois Department of Transportation, where amob bookie got a $70,000 a year job with the DOT and now, with the help of theunion, continues to work for the state; much to the chagrin of his DOTsupervisor.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Youprobably never thought that turning a key in a lock could be hazardous to yourhealth, but at Menard State Prison, over $10 million was awarded to prisonguards AND the warden for injuries caused from this innocuous act. Apparently,some of our Illinois Industrial Commissioners had their own workers’compensation claims and were suffering “sympathetic” pain for the guards.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">In aneffort to cut our deficit and to bolster our credit rating, the state raised mystate income tax by 67% and they also raised the corporate tax by 47%. Makesyou want to run a business and work there, doesn’t it? Caterpillar recentlytold Governor Quinn the Mighty that they will not increase their business inthis state, as long as the climate is so “anti-business”. Let’s see; we had themoney to bribe Sears and the CBT to keep their business here, but notCaterpillar? I lost my job at Cat when they moved the engine assembly to Texas. Then, at aboutthe same time, they moved the road graders from Decatur,IL to North Little Rock, Arkansas.And now; a new Cat plant is going to Athens, Georgia, butQuinn still thinks that Cat is just “blowing smoke”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">It wasclear that the Gov was hurt by Oberhelmann’s statements and he could barely mustera reply. He said, “We overhauled the workers’ compensation system in thisstate”. Quinn’s idea of “overhaul” must mean that, when you get your oilchanged, you are having your engine overhauled. The work comp “overhaul” didNOTHING to lower rates in this state.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">So, therehas been no meaningful spending cuts made yet, but Quinn and his bobble headsare still finding ways to RAISE money through the good taxpayers in this state.Now, Quinn and Chicagomayor Rahm Emanual want to charge a $65 “fee” for gun registration in thisstate and as we all know, a “fee” is not a “tax”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">It wasn’tthat long ago that Rahm the Merciless was President Obama’s Chief of Staff, butRahm couldn’t get everyone on board with doing things the “Chicago way”, so,feeling like a fish out of water, Rahm returned to the familiar waters ofChicago politics, where he has been doing a yeoman’s job of bullying his citycouncil AND our governor.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">So, thatbrings me to Obama. He got his start in politics as a community organizer.There must be a playbook or instruction manual that teaches one to organize.Now; I have to wonder if he was organizing in the most corrupt city in thenation in spite of it. After-all; he is a product of that environment. Did heescape it squeaky clean? I don’t think so. Look at his shadow cabinet of czars,his recess appointments, Obama Care, activists judges, the NLRB, his fast andfurious attorney general’s willingness to sue private citizens and businessesto stop them from exercising their liberties, suing states to keep them fromenforcing immigration laws and then it becomes very clear that President Obamais a by-product of his environment. His hypocrisy has no limits.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The Houseand the Senate haven’t been much help, either. Many of them still believe that theyare beefing up their re-election victories by pigging out on pork projects fortheir home districts, because they are too chicken to base their chances on themoral and ethical strength of their votes on various pieces of legislation. Andbesides; giving the special interests groups that support and the specialattention that they deserve isn’t “buying” votes in the strict sense is it?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Sure;everyone wants their taxes to come back home in some way, but it has caused ade facto redistribution of wealth. However; in Illinois, tax money that is taken and issupposed to come back to the school districts isn’t. Instead, Quinn the Mightyis simply telling school districts that they are going to have to take on abigger share at the local level which will most likely cause property taxesacross the state to skyrocket. I wish that I could tell my creditors to eat itin the same way that Illinoisgovernment tells their taxpayers.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">In his“State of the State” address, Quinn offered NOTHING; only get tough talk, butno plans to get tough. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The 2012elections will be the most important election in my lifetime and I don’texaggerate when I say that. I cannot think of another single election wherethere was so much at stake at the state and federal level. We have an opportunityin Illinoisto flip the entire legislature as ALL of the seats are up for re-election.There are but a very few who deserve the privilege of our vote for them.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">At thefederal level, I can’t wait to pay $5 a gallon for gas, even though we sit onenough oil to truly become energy self-sufficient and cut the cord to Middle East countries that don’t like us very much, butare more than happy to take our money and the lives of our soldiers andcitizens.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">That is notto say that I am for price controls, because I’m not, but why is it that gasprices can go up whenever a sheik farts, but a utilities company must “request”a price increase from the legislature?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I fullyunderstand a company’s duty to shareholders and yea, though I don’t know what“obscene profits” are or what it is to have “too much money”; I know that ourcountry survives because of capitalism.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I believethat, in many cases, those who have their hand out because “they can’t help it”are a myth. I have always felt that those in need will receive their help fromcharitable donations from kind-hearted givers. Government is not a charity norshould they determine for us how we should spend our money.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">It’s a factthat not everyone can afford to buy a house, a car or go to college. Those decisionsshould be made by potential purchasers. When I took out the loan for our firsthouse, interest rates were eight percent. I made my payments without the helpof the government. I borrowed money for my vehicles from the bank and nevermissed a payment. Back then, there were no incentives to buy and interest rateswere eight to nine percent. We took out student loans so that our son could goto college and we paid back every dime. We never looked for a bailout from thegovernment. What has changed, other than loan rates have dropped dramatically?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">All of uswho came from poor beginnings know that we had two choices: stay there andwallow in self-pity fueled by government cheese or to change it.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I chose tochange it. I won’t apologize for it and I refuse to stand by and allowgovernment to tell me that I have too much and must give some of it to someoneelse.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I pay mytaxes and I donate to charities. I volunteer my time in my community and willhelp where help is needed.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">THAT is MYdecision and because I am opposed to extending that charity to flimflammers andscammers of the System, I will not believe that I am a bad person.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The stateof the government and the condition of our country is our fault.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">So, I saythat it is time to rescue Lady Liberty and to take back our country from dysfunctionalgovernance.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">It is anon-partisan approach. Republicans and Democrats alike have managed throughseveral parliamentary procedures to set themselves up as the ruling class andin the process have trampled on our Constitution.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I will notconsider any candidate from any party who will not work to change it. I want agovernment who will allow me to keep what I have earned and return upon myretirement the Social Security funds that I have paid since I was sixteen yearsold.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I havesupported government at all levels. I don’t expect any more than what I havepaid for. I expect government to honor their contract with me. Period.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Rant off.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Game on.November can’t come soon enough.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-ansi-language: EN-US; mso-bidi-language: AR-SA; mso-fareast-font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; mso-fareast-language: EN-US;">The opinions andviews expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who alsowrites as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.blogger.com/www.fireengineering.com">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire EngineeringMagazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. All articles by the authorare protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form withoutexpressed permission.</span></b><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-5627435552841477581?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-56274355528414775812012-03-06T00:33:00.004Z2012-04-06T12:17:12.449ZTake a Bow, Bowring!noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_Mh9Y5vP5mo/T0wjwGraPbI/AAAAAAAAADc/F-tsxiCfsPg/s1600/Bowring.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" height="275" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_Mh9Y5vP5mo/T0wjwGraPbI/AAAAAAAAADc/F-tsxiCfsPg/s320/Bowring.jpg" width="320" /></a></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><div class="MsoNormal"><br /><br /><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Disclaimer: This article is NOT anendorsement of the product that is mentioned throughout the article. I amsuggesting that it should be given a closer look and make your own decisionsbased upon your personal experience with the Bowringâ„&cent;. I have not beencompensated in any way for my comments.</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Whenever Igo to a trade show or conference, I will hit the exhibitors’ booths and lookfor that ONE tool that might have an impact on how firefighters do their jobs.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">FDIC isjust around the corner.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">In this“super-bowl” of fire service conferences, registrants can participate in theHOT programs, classroom programs and cruise the exhibits in the Exhibition Halland at Lucas Oil Stadium.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">In short;FDIC presents a golden opportunity for firefighters to train, hang out withlike-minded people, and take a look at fire equipment; some new /somenot-so-new.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">If you’relucky, you will get to see and to talk to some of the brightest stars in thenation’s fire service in one of our country’s shining cities-Indianapolis.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">This year,much to my dismay, I will go on Friday and come home on Friday, because of aprior commitment.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">If I haveany time left, I want to hit the exhibits to look for the tool that I thinkwill be a “game-changer” for firefighters.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Last year,as I walked the exhibits and hung out with the likes of Erik Estrada, I cameupon the Paul Conway booth, where I saw the most amazing hand tool-the Bowringâ„&cent;.This multi-purpose tool immediately caught my attention and as I listened toTony Mack describe its many uses, I was completely blown away. It was also anhonor and pleasure to meet and to talk to THE Paul Conway.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Then, Tonycalled Clint Bowring over. Clint was this tool’s inventor. To hear theirexcitement as they talked about this tool was infectious. You can get the storyof the Bowringâ„&cent; from their website at <a href="http://www.bowring.com/">www.thebowring.com</a>.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">You areprobably asking yourselves, “Why would I bring up a tool that I saw at LASTyear’s FDIC”?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Because, asI watched Clint Bowring, Tony Mack, Evan Fenton and Ryan Lujan literally GIVEtheir tool away to firefighters to try, I thought that I would at some pointsee an article written by one of my blogger friends who assured this group thatthey would try it and report on it.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">But, todate, I have not seen ONE blog written on the Bowringâ„&cent;.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I want tobe clear that this tool does not replace firefighters, but it does allow ashort staff to do more by simply reaching into their pocket for this tool. Itwill definitely save trips to the truck or at the very least will eliminate theneed to carry several tools in addition to a charged hose line.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">When Ithink about it, I would have to put this tool right up there with the Halliganbar. Note that I didn’t stutter. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I watchedvideo footage of firefighters using this tool and I shook my head in amazement.A tool that could fit into pockets on turnout gear; rescuing a downfirefighter, taking out a windshield, shutting off gas, forcing entry and somuch more was mind-boggling!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Finally, Ilooked at Ryan Lujan and said, “Basically, only your imagination limits thenumber of uses for this tool”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">He said,“Exactly”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">These are Oklahoma Cityfirefighters who clearly believe in their tool. Hopefully, they will be at FDICagain this year. I would be curious to know if business has been good for them.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">If seeingis believing, then I believe that the Bowringâ„&cent; is going to find a wideaudience.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Go to <a href="http://www.bowring.com/">www.thebowring.com</a> and check out the videos andthe testimonials. It can also be found at <a href="http://www.paulconwayshields.com/">www.paulconwayshields.com</a>. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I will beon the floor at FDIC 2012 in search of the next revolutionary tool.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">See youthere.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">The opinions and views expressed arethose of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason.They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.blogger.com/www.fireengineering.com">www.fireengineering.com</a>,Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. Allarticles by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot bereproduced in any form without expressed permission.</span></b></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-1578621578215817239?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-15786215782158172392012-02-28T00:49:00.001Z2012-04-06T12:17:12.668ZThe Love of the...Stress?noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<br /><div align="center" class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;"><b><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"><br /></span></u></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"></span></div><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">You can goto the many fire service-related outlets or social media sites every day andread comments left by firefighters as to why they love being firefighters.</span><br /><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">The firstbook that I read on this subject was Dennis Smith's "Firefighters". It was aseries of interviews that described in the firefighters' own words on why theyloved what they did. It was released in 1988 in hardcover.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Morerecently (2008), Rick Lasky released his "Pride and Ownership: A Firefighter'sLove for the Job". Rick captured the essence perfectly and in a style that wasuniquely Rick's. He articulates what many firefighters feel, but struggle todescribe or to explain.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">An articlein a Sunday paper got me to wondering; if firefighters love what they do, thenwhy is the firefighting profession listed as Number 2 on the list of moststressful jobs of 2012?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">What isn'tclear in the article is the type of stress that the author is referring to.There are many types of stress and I can only assume from the tone of thearticle that they were writing about mental stress. However; there are manytypes of mental stress as well. But, I will address it in general terms.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">The 10 moststressful jobs of 2012 are:</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">10. TaxiDriver</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;9. Photojournalist</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;8. Corporate executive</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;7. Public relations executive</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;6. Event coordinator</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;5. Police officer</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;4. Military general</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;3. Airline pilot</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;2. Firefighter</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">&nbsp;1. Enlisted soldier</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Read thefull article: <a href="http://qconline.com/archives/qco/display.php?id=579194&amp;query=stressful%20jobs">http://qconline.com/archives/qco/display.php?id=579194&amp;query=stressful%20jobs</a></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Thearticle's author offers opinions for the causes of the stress and some of themmight have merit, but firefighters have a uniquely different view of the jobthat they do.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">When"firefighting" as an occupation or an avocation is mentioned, it is spoken,using very positive adjectives to describe it. For instance:</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">"I lovewhat I do".</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">"It's not ajob; it's a calling".</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">"It's thebest job in the world".</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">"I get arush when we are at a job".</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">"I'm happiestwhen I'm with my crew".</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">"We are afamily; a brotherhood".</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">"There'snothing like it".</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">When afirefighter talks about it, there is excitement in their eyes, a smile on theirface and a mouth that won't run out of things to say about a job that definesthem as a person.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">We talk andtalk about the "big ones" and of some of the extraordinary efforts made byothers that we were witness to. You might even get a mention, but you willdeflect it with a "That was nothing", but inside; you are proud that your peersnoticed your effort.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">All of thejokes, the good times, the meals shared, training together, respondingtogether, attending each others' family milestones and retirementsâ€&brvbar;</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">How couldthis possibly be stressful?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Many firefightersrecognize their mortality and know that, on any given day, that they may perishor that a fellow brother or sister could. But those thoughts remain deep insideof them and thoughts of accomplishing their mission are what occupy their mindsand even if they are thinking about their mortality, they don't talk about itmuch; if at all.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Firefightingis their dream job. They have been preparing to be a firefighter since theywere a kid. It is everything that they had hoped for times ten!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Does any ofthis sound stressful to you?</span></div><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">According to Dr. MelissaConrad Stoppler: </span><br /><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Stress may be considered as any physical, chemical, oremotional factor that causes bodily or mental unrest and that may be a factorin disease causation. Physical and chemical factors that can cause stressinclude trauma, infections, toxins, illnesses, and injuries of any sort.Emotional causes of stress and tension are numerous and varied. While manypeople associate the term ‘stress' with psychological stress, scientists andphysicians use this term to denote any force that impairs the stability andbalance of bodily functions.</span></i><br /><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">If stress disrupts body balance and function, then is allstress bad? Not necessarily. A mild degree of stress and tension can sometimesbe beneficial. For example, feeling mildly stressed when carrying out a projector assignment often compels us to do a good job, focus better, and workenergetically.</span></i><br /><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Likewise, exercising can produce a temporary stress on somebody functions, but its health benefits are indisputable. It is only whenstress is overwhelming, or poorly managed, that its negative effects appear.</span></i><br /><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">An important goal for those under stress is the management of life stresses. Elimination of stress is unrealistic,since stress is a part of normal life. It's impossible to completely eliminatestress, and it would not be advisable to do so. Instead, we can learn to managestress so that we have control over our stress and its effects</span></i> <i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">on our physical and mental health.</span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"></span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">If we take that and applyit to what I have written so far, I have described "good stress".</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Bad stress as described byDr. Stoppler could be sleep deprivation, the many obstacles getting to thescene, being short handed, critical injuries requiring swift decisions,deceased victims, a Mayday call or anything pulled from Murphy's playbook arejust some of the bad stuff that plays out everyday in this country.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Add crappy pay,the threatof loss of jobs or the loss of health benefits as you fight cancer during your"retirement" and I have to wonder if the good outweighs the bad.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I know that the "badstress" isn't enough to discourage those who are serving and those wishing toserve. 1.3 million are still answering the call and there are more wanting toget in than are getting out. And that is good.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">We seem to be willing torisk the "chemical" changes to our body that over the years, will impact ourgood health because of the love for the job. Many will say that they don't feelstress, but it's sneaky stuff. Just like we may not know if we've had one toomany barley pops, the cumulative effect of stress may be building and might tapyou on the shoulder at a most inopportune time. It is here that I hope thatgood will triumph over bad.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I would add one moredescriptive reason to the list and that is:</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">"It is worth the sacrifice"and "it" is friends, strangers, neighbors, families and the communities that weserve.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">TCSS.</span><br /><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article'sauthor, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect theopinions and views of <a href="http://www.blogger.com/www.fireengineering.com">www.fireengineering.com</a>,Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. Allarticles by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot bereproduced in any form without expressed permission.</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"></span><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-468412607397626996?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-4684126073976269962012-02-05T16:11:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:12.886ZBlogging Then and Nownoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Every now and then, I have to remind myself that I have been blogging for a long time.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">My first article went up at Firehouse.com during the early days of the MembersZone feature. Back then, you could sign up for free, but if you paid, you could get content that wasn’t available with the free membership. That first article was posted in the “Volunteer’s Corner”.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">From there, I went to the IACOJ website, where I posted several blogs in the “ChiefReason” section.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The Board there gave me a piece of their pie and we had many, many great discussions.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">So many fond memories there; too many to count. From the many strangers that I met through the website, I was privileged to make many friends and it was done from both sides of a debate.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I always felt comfortable. It felt like a home and that I belonged.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Then, I went on a new adventure.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I was asked by the founder of FirefighterNation to come and join his new venture and that took me to FireEMSBlogs.com, where I managed to post 2-3 times a week, as well as participate in their forums.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">That exposure lead to a slot on FirefighterNetcast, an up-and-coming blogtalkradio show that was gaining popularity. It was live and unscripted-right up my alley!</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">But, nothing ever remains the same and you look for new challenges or they find you.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">However it happens, you find yourself somewhere else, doing what you love to do.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I have been with Fireengineering.com for more than a year now. Bobby, Peter and Scott have been a blast to work with.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">From Firehouse.com to now, I have posted well over 400 articles. Anyone who has read my blog knows that I write about an array of subjects. Many have been about fire service issues and many more have not been.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Having the freedom to write about whatever I want is what draws me to blogging. I don’t expect everyone to get it and I certainly don’t expect everyone to agree with me. Anyone who has blogged for as long as I have has been called every name in the book and yet; that doesn’t serve to discourage me or to entertain thoughts of giving it up.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">It DOES cause you to step back now and then to re-examine your words, because the right words properly presented can be powerful and the wrong choice of words can be hurtful.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And though I have always taken great pride in choosing the right words, I haven’t always been right. As I am not one to be satisfied with hitting for percentage; I don’t want to hit a home run at someone else’s expense, either.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Firefighter safety has always been close to my heart. I have advocated for it at the local, state and national levels. I have had the grand opportunity to use what I love to do to put it into the public arena as a blog.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">During my active, fire career, my department made several, interior attacks. That was back in the days when doing a 360 simply wasn’t done by small departments. We had to rely on our training from smoke classes and building construction class to keep us safe. You see; back then, if the chief didn’t respond, it was the guy first on scene who was in charge.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">It was only after taking tactics classes taught by the likes of Rick Lasky, John Mittendorf, Tom Freeman, Bob and Ray Hoff, Eddie Enright and many others that I realized the importance of doing a proper size up.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And still; we never made a rescue from a structural fire in those years then or since.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">My rescues came as an EMT and as a rescuer at vehicle accidents and there were many.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">There are many in the volunteer service like me, who go an entire career, believing that we were prepared to fight our way into a structure, race to the victim(s) and pull them out of Harm’s way, but will never know if our heart and our training were up to the task.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I still get excited and a little emotional when I hear or read about a crew that got in, made the grab and everyone went home.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I can’t say that I know that feeling, but I can say that the willingness of anyone to make that effort is one of the pillars that built America’s fire service.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Unless you write strictly opinion pieces, where you simply write within a single dimension, you have to do a lot of research, which in my case, requires a lot of reading. All of that reading goes into my blogs.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Risk management (safety) is how I make my living, so I tend to gravitate in that direction.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The best fire service book that I have ever read on firefighter safety is Paul Grimwood’s “Euro Firefighter”.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I don’t know if that was Paul’s intent for it to be a safety manual, but it is to me.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">From the many case studies, interviews, NIOSH excerpts and strategies discussed in his book, it is written in a way that immediately impacts the reader with many key elements needed on the fireground by officers and firefighters alike. Paul is one of those authors who must be read. He absolutely knows what he is writing about. The last I knew, Paul held the highest fire service degree awarded in the UK AND he has worked out of some of the busiest stations in the UK. I am honored that he calls me “brother and friend”. I am humbled that he used some of my work in his book. If I never write again, I will always have that.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">That brings me back to the point of this blog.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">You can write something that has impact and relevance; you can state opinions designed simply to get a reaction or you can write what many others write about and in the process, get lost in the maddening crowd. It’s simple for me; I don’t want to go with the crowd.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">When Priceless Paul Combs posts one of his extraordinary drawings, I always study it for several minutes, wanting to see every nuance and subtlety. His gift is that every drawing tells a story in vivid detail and he leaves no questions about his intent.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">What Paul is able to accomplish with drawing pens and paper, I try to do with a combination of words. His is more visual and mine is more of a visualization.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">While watching the movie “Contagion”, I was struck by a line that Elliot Gould’s character spoke to Jude Law’s character.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Gould said, “Blogging is graffiti with punctuation”.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Really?</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I thought that blogging was a more highly-regarded medium than that. Why; some blogsites have been sold for millions.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Blogging has kept my brain hitting on all cylinders. This year, I will turn 60. Not only am I looking forward to it, but I am embracing it.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Six decades on this Earth with over three decades in the fire service.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I’ve got plenty left.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">TCSS.</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The views and opinions expressed are those of the author, Art Goodrich, who also writes under the name ChiefReason.&nbsp; They do not reflect the views and opinions of <a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. Articles written by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form.</span><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-8382688878819600443?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-83826888788196004432012-01-31T01:44:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:13.058ZWhat Are Your Plans For 2012?noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">2012 is just around the corner.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">If you haven't already made plans for the new year, then you'd better start now.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I am speaking to volunteer fire departments.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Have you made plans to recruit, then retain new members?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">There are people in your communities who are sitting on the fence. They want to get involved in their community in some way. Do you know who they are and have you reached out to them?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The days of having potential members walk through the door to proclaim that they want to join appear to be over. What is your plan to go out into your community and actively recruit new members?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">What is your plan to keep the older members interested and active?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">If you have a department where the older guys step back and watch, then you are a department that is operating no where near full strength. Remember that "complacency kills".</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Are you sure that you are an organization that others WANT to join?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Do you have leaders that command and control and follow chain of command? If so, is it so transparent as to be non-existent? An absence of leadership is not transparency of leadership.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Does your community know what you do? If they don't, then how do you expect to fund your fire department?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Do you contact the local press when you have scheduled events, such as training, fundraisers or open houses? A picture accompanied by a thousand words is priceless.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Do you take advantage of nearby training facilities? Are your training officers meeting/exceeding expectations or are they just repeating last year's training schedule?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The majority of communities in this nation rely on volunteers to deliver their fire protection. It is more important than ever to know the buildings in your community and to have pre-plans. If you don't know; small departments do not get a "pass" if they are engaged in tasks that are covered under the national standards.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">If you have SOGs, then it is time to review and to update them. If you don't have SOGs, then you need to start writing them. If you ever get questioned on your response protocols, such as in a court of law; your answer had better not be "we don't have SOGs".</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Is your equipment up to date? Do you have the equipment for the services that you provide? If not, then why not?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">There are no excuses if you haven't been reviewing your tax base or applying for grants. You have to remember that NFPA standards, NIOSH and OSHA&nbsp; standards will be cited in the aforementioned court of law. And if your equipment is not up to standards, then money that you would use to purchase or upgrade will instead go towards paying a hefty fine!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Career departments are being decimated by budget cuts. Lack of manpower is reaching the "danger zone". Volunteer departments may have to constrict as well, if the taxpayers believe that they are already paying enough.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And when I say “constrict”, I mean partnering with a nearby department and eliminating redundancy of services. For instance; if your department doesn’t have a full complement of trench rescue tools, then consider establishing an area-wide rescue team. Pool your tools and stow them in a trailer at the department that is central to your response area. At the very least, know who has what and call for their assistance when need be. Know your strengths as well as your limitations.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Communities will not be inclined to increase funding, if you do nothing more than to show up and keep exposures wet while the structure on fire collapses into the basement. Fire investigators get very testy when you leave them with nothing to investigate.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">That takes me right back to having SOGs that includes automatic mutual aid. You might have to give up your "fiefdom" and get a department nearest to the call rolling first. You have to remember that lives and property are at stake. Don't jeopardize either simply because it is in your fire district and it's "your" call.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">If you are already a good department, then plan to get better.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">From there you can achieve excellence and THAT will draw new members and it will remind the older guys of the reason that they joined in the first place.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Plan to break out in 2012.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. All articles by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form without expressed permission.</span><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-8146798835735032069?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-81467988357350320692011-12-28T22:27:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:13.245ZChristmas and the Six Year Oldnoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"></span><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">My wife and I were at the mall finishing up our Christmas shopping and taking in the sights of the holiday season.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">There were grade schoolers singing Christmas songs or I assumed that they were. I couldn't hear them over the Christmas music blaring over the mall's speakers.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">There were dancing sugar plum fairies. Check that; it was mall cops chasing another shoplifter.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Everyone was in the Christmas spirit. Some could be heard complaining about how crowded it was. Others were busy texting and bumping into shoppers; sending out Christmas messages to their entire contact list, I would guess. Older patrons, unable to keep up with the Christmas spirit, were snoozing on the plush, wooden mall benches. Mall housekeeping staff was standing at the ready to swab up any wayward drool.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">"Excuse me" was answered with "screw you". Ah; tis the season!</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I was done with my shopping and my fake knees were in need of a rest, so I told my wife that I was going to sit at center court, while she continued on. She is one who likes to look at merchandise, obsess over making a poor choice and would then purchase a gift card instead.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Besides; from my vantage point at center court, I could scope out the shoppers decked to the halls in their Christmas sweat pants with matching (?) NFL logo sweatshirt. Some would at least have the decency to accessorize with athletic shoes, while others chose hunting boots.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Yes; it's going to be a Larry the Cable Guy Christmas!</span><br /><i><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I pulled out my Mp3 player, set it on shuffle, put in my ear buds and cranked up the volume.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">My eyes grew heavy from the sights, the sounds and the smells. Ah; the smells! Wait; the old guy sitting next to me just...nevermind.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I felt a tap on my shoulder and when I looked up, there was a pudgy little guy with silver hair and a beard to match looking at me and smiling.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I pulled an ear bud from my ear and said, 'How you doing?'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">He replied, 'If you could have ONE wish for Christmas, what would it be?'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Thinking that there was a hidden camera, I answered, 'Peace on Earth.'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">He let out a very robust laugh and said, 'No; this wish is for YOU and you alone. What would you like with but one wish?'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I replied, 'OK; just between you and me, I would like to be six years old and celebrating Christmas with Mom, Dad and my sisters again.'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The pudgy little fellow replied, 'That's an excellent wish. Close your eyes and it shall be!'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I said, 'Look; if you're after my wallet, I don't keep money in it.'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">'Ho, ho, ho! No kind sir; I wish to grant you your wish!'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I closed my eyes.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">It's 6:00 am on Christmas Day. </span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I run downstairs to the Christmas tree to see several, neatly wrapped presents around the tree. I looked over at the end table and the milk and cookies left for Santa are GONE!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I quietly ran back upstairs and told Connie and Dixie that Santa had been to our house. Donna, Joyce and Judy heard the commotion and yelled for me to get back in bed.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I did, but under protest. I was such a rebel, despite my young age!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The minutes seemed like hours. I couldn't stand it, knowing that Santa had been to MY house.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I'd jump out of bed, run to the stairway and back to bed, to and fro.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Finally, at 7:00 am, we all went downstairs.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Dad came out and said, 'It sounded like cattle coming down the stairs!'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Mom came out of the bedroom and was somewhat disheveled.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">No; she was definitely disheveled!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I said, 'Since we are already up, can we open presents? PLLLLLEEEAAASSSEEE?'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Mom said, 'Well, we might as well, I suppose.'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Since Donna was the oldest, she had the honor of passing out the presents. First, Joyce; then, Judy; then, Dixie; then, Connie and finally, ME. Whew; for a minute there, I thought that I had been denied, because of an errant baseball that went through a neighbor's window during the summer. It wasn't exactly naughty, but it certainly wasn't nice!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The sisters were squealing with delight as they opened their presents. Dolls, clothing, costume jewelry and 45 rpm records abound.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Dad had put on a Christmas record by a guy named Glenn Miller to set the mood.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I opened my first present and it was a winter cap and mittens; not exactly something that I could play WITHâ€&brvbar;more like something to play IN.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">OK; let's try another.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Socks and underwear? What the â€&brvbar;</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Mom and Dad were looking at each other and smiling. Something was going on.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Dad asked me, 'What's the matter?'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I was too busy pouting to hear him.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">He said, 'Here; try this one.'</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I opened it and couldn't believe my eyes. It was a big, yellow Tonka dump truck!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">'Now, THIS was on my list', I proclaimed.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">In my next present was a Ny-Lint flatbed trailer and semi-tractor. Sweet baby Jesus!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">My last present was a Ny-Lint crane with a clam bucket that really worked! It wasn't on my list, but I didn't care anymore. I was too busy playing with my new toys to notice. Dad was proudly supervising. He knew something about driving trucks and running a crane. Sometimes, I got to sit on his lap when he ran the crane at the scrapyard, where he worked.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Mom was in the kitchen preparing the big Christmas meal; turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy and scalloped corn. There were plates of cookies, divinity and fudge. It was in the Christmas candy that she made where she would put the nuts that we would gather every Fall.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The sweet smell of Christmas treats would overpower the smell from the coal furnace on this day!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">After we ate, all of us kids would go outside and try unsuccessfully to build a snowman. Heck; we couldn't even make a SNOWBALL, but we didn't care. We got out the sleds and took turns pulling each other around the neighborhood. I guess the whole idea was to get wet and cold before we went back into the house, but I was SIX and impervious to the cold.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">By early evening, I could barely keep my eyes open and would fall asleep on the floor, right next to my new toys.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Dad would pick me up and carry me to my bed. He would tuck me in and kiss me on the forehead without saying a word.</span></i><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I felt a tap on my shoulder and when I looked up, I saw my wife with a curious look on her face.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I said, "How you doing?"</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">She said, "You were snoring."</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">"I wasn't asleep. I was...ah, nevermind. You wouldn't believe me anyway," I said rather dejectedly.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">"No; you were definitely asleep and probably having one of your weird dreams," she insisted.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">"Well, if I was dreaming, then it was sublime!" I exclaimed.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Just then, near the Hallmark store, I saw a pudgy little man with silver hair and a beard to match.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">As I got near him, I said, "You probably get this all the time, but you look like"-</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">"Lyle; my name is Lyle. Excuse me, but I have to take this call," he said contritely.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">If I had but one wish, I would wish that we could all be six years old just one more time and celebrating Christmas.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Now, when I think back, I believe that Santa used the "layaway" plan, so that families like mine could afford the gifts that we received.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And I think about how, in return, we MADE our gifts for Mom and Dad, who might not otherwise, had gotten any gifts.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I remember the joy on their faces and the love that was shared on Christmas Day and on all the days of the year.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Carry the joy and love every day of your lives.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And Merry Christmas.</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Art</span><br /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article's author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.</span><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-1397338027239920406?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-13973380272399204062011-12-21T00:19:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:13.401ZExtreme Makeover; Moline Illinois Editionnoemail@noemail.orgArt GoodrichAfter watching the Moline budget talks being covered on local TV, in the local papers and listening on local talk radio, I am convinced that fire departments will NEVER win another battle against manpower cuts, as long as they insist on using the "more people will die" strategy.<br /><br />And it's not because it isn't true, but it's because it is no longer getting the attention of the majority of their cities' residents. In today's selfish society, people don't care, as long as THEY aren't the ones dying.<br /><br />It's the ones USING the service that is driving up cost for the rest of us, some will say.<br /><br />Did you know that there are people in Tennessee who won't pay a lousy 75 bucks a year for fire protection, but will complain to the national news outlets when they don't get FREE service if their domicile catches fire?<br /><br />It's true.<br /><br />I thought that the area firefighters, supporters and particularly the firefighter union did a fantastic job of getting the information out. They didn't go overboard with the "more will die" message, but they mentioned it. What struck me was that when many mentioned the additional risk it would put on the firefighters, there was a palpable indifference by some on the city council. It was as if they were sitting there believing that taking such risks was a part of a Moline firefighter's job description and it is...to a point. Cutting manpower and pushing the risk to those who remain is NOT acceptable risk and shame on the Moline city council if this is what they believe.<br /><br />The city administrator wants the residents to believe that it is about the high cost of firefighter pensions. That's rubbish; something that they are willing to pay more for in regards to its removal.<br /><br />"Special risk" pension plans were designed for two reasons: firefighters and cops. Benefits were enhanced to balance against a lower wage and it was thought at the time that people who rush into burning buildings and people who are shot at should receive compensation for the risks that they took to provide for the public's safety. To that, I say "AMEN".<br /><br />The early retirement clauses were inserted, because of the many hazards bombarding public safety employees; both physical and mental.<br /><br />So; what happened?<br /><br />Well, from where I sit; the other unions representing non-public safety employees were lobbying the lawmakers in their states to include THEIR union members in the "special risk" plans, causing the pension payments to soar. It comes at a time when we are seeing "special risk" retirees going up and general pensioners' numbers decreasing. Again; this is my observation.<br /><br />In addition; while the firefighters in my state were dutifully contributing their 9.5 percent into the pension plan, cities were deferring and delaying their share.<br /><br />I swear; if the city "bosses"-i.e. city councils-ran businesses like they do their cities, they would have been sent packing before they even got their probationary periods served!<br /><br />The role of government, first and foremost, is to provide for the public's safety. Everything after THAT should be on the table for debate.<br /><br />As I look at my future retirement in the private sector, I wonder what is a fair retirement for public servants?<br /><br />Look at Social Security. It has been said that public servants will not get Social Security, but I know of several firefighters who have "side jobs" or "side businesses" and unless it is a strictly cash basis, I would believe that they would be paying into Social Security.<br /><br />And if they are paying into Social Security, then wouldn't seem likely that they could draw on it at some point? Or maybe, I am wrong.<br /><br />In my case, when I become eligible for Social Security, it will be approximately at 20 percent of what I now make. But, if they keep raising the eligibility age, I might get ZERO percent, as I might be dead before I ever collect a dime.<br /><br />My 401K might give me another couple hundred bucks a month, but then, there might be a rule by then, forcing a reduction in my Social Security or it will be taxed down to where I might have enough left to pay for a newspaper subscription.<br /><br />Public pensions at 85 percent; it that too much and if so, then what IS fair? 80? 70? 50? I really don't know, because I have been raised to get what I can.<br /><br />We need to keep in mind that the value of a pension in a union contract has been negotiated in a fair collective bargaining process.<br /><br />Public safety employees did not hold a gun to city government's head nor did they hold communities hostage. They continued to answer the call to every incident in good times and bad.<br /><br />And yet, in today's climate; firefighters are being blamed for budget shortfalls.<br /><br />THAT isn't fair!<br /><br />I don't know what is left to argue. When fire departments have proven their value to the quality of life in their communities; when they have been repeatedly hailed as heroes, you have to wonder why they, along with their communities are being fed this poison pill by city leaders, who find creative ways to waste millions of dollars in order to sacrifice the public's safety and again, I say what is more important than the public's safety?<br /><br />In a calling that is steeped in grand history and tradition; firefighters will have to look towards non-traditional ways to preserve their jobs and the public's safety in their communities.<br /><br />It should start NOW!<br /><br />&nbsp;The opinions and views expressed are those of the article's author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.<div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-6509611128826496995?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-65096111288264969952011-12-16T02:11:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:13.822ZAnatomy of a Firefighternoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"></span><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">They are questions that are often asked by both those wishing to be a firefighter and by those trying to understand why someone would be a firefighter: what does it take and why do you do it?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I will often reach back into my past and resurrect some of the mental tools that I used during my time as a firefighter. It is a characteristic that is so ingrained into your being that it is yours’ to be used for the rest of your life. You will react to decision-making in a much different manner to all kinds of emergencies and other critical situations.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">One of the most interesting phenomenon-or at least to me-is the actions that are taken by firefighters at that moment when they realize that someone’s life hangs in the balance and the only one who can affect that outcome is the firefighter who is there at that place and time.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">In other words: what triggers the response in the firefighter that has them risking their life for another?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I believe that it is not because of pension or pay. I don’t believe that a firefighter wants to be a hero. And it certainly isn’t because firefighters believe that it is a safe, stable profession.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I think that this desire to help others-however dangerous-comes from the most important part of the firefighter’s anatomyâ€&brvbar;the heart!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">It is a healthy heart; full of sense of duty, honor, bravery, compassion and community. Traditional values for Humankind and service to communities, as described in our fire services’ glorious history, flows through a firefighter’s veins and at any moment will give them the superhuman energy against a supernatural foe.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">It is a heart that is strong enough to engage the repeated assaults from strenuous and stressful events. And though outcomes may not lift the heart, but instead, weight it down; the heart will react with extraordinary resilience and will beat even stronger in the many men and women who wear their uniform.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">When you think of the heart of a firefighter, can you think of any other profession where generation upon generation has that desire to join the ranks of their moms, dads, grandfathers, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters and cousins? In many cases, children will go completely out of their comfort zone to NOT follow in their parents’ footsteps, but from the first, toy fire truck or peddle car and fueled by the stories of their parent; the child of a firefighter wants to be nothing else. It does not have to be thrust or forced upon them. It has become their dream. It is reinforced by the many fire toys, books, trips to the fire station and culminating in a junior firefighter program.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">For most jobs; the heart only needs to beat. The employee needs only to show up. If their heart isn’t in it, they can call off, quit or get fired. If a firefighter discovers too late that they don’t have the heart for the job/a love for the job; it can have catastrophic results for the firefighter or his crew members.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">No; the heart of a firefighter has to be there from the beginning. Everything else can be “developed”.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">What about a brain?&nbsp; </span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">From an anatomical point, a firefighter has to have a brain that is wired to make critical decisions very quickly. The right decisions must be made every time that Life is at risk; be it the life of a victim or the life of the firefighter. Some would argue that this situation presents itself every time the tones drop, but it doesn’t.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Firefighters have the expectation that they are going home at the end of their shift. The many tasks that are taught develop conditioned behavior. As an example, ventilation can be done by opening windows, cutting a hole in a roof and using the assistance of a fan. Once it is decided to use either horizontal or vertical ventilation, then it is simply completing the task as we have been repetitiously trained to do.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I use ventilation as an example of a conditioned behavior. What about <i>instinct</i>? Are their situations where firefighters act instinctively?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I<i>nstinct</i> is defined as “a largely inheritable and unalterable tendency of an organism to make a complex and specific response to environmental stimuli without involving reason”.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">So; do we attempt the rescue of trapped victims based upon our conditioned behavior reinforced by our training or is it done instinctively and done in spite of what we have been conditioned to do in that situation?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Then, when all is said and done, firefighters must process the mental trauma that is left by the visual trauma and for some, it can be very stressful.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">There have been studies done on the effects of mental stress upon firefighters (<a href="http://www.waldenu.edu/Documents/News-and-Events/Milen.pdf">http://www.waldenu.edu/Documents/News-and-Events/Milen.pdf</a>), but the simple fact is that we all deal with bad things differently. You cannot take a cookie cutter or template and expect it to resolve mental issues in all cases. Mental stress can be every bit as debilitating as injuries from physical exertion and if firefighters attempt to bury it in the deep recesses of their brain, it can present itself when it is least expected. As firefighters, we must recognize the symptoms (<a href="http://www.iaff.org/et/jobaid/eap/reactions_to_traumatic_stress.htm">http://www.iaff.org/et/jobaid/eap/reactions_to_traumatic_stress.htm</a>) and seek help. As firefighter leaders, we must be vigilant with our post-incident stress monitoring programs.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">A firefighter must have ears that can hear the important lessons to be learned in the classroom. They must hear the tones drop, even when they are asleep. They must be able to hear instructions over the noise of the many engines that may populate a scene. Ears that are covered in a Nomex hood must hear valuable communications that come over their portable radios and in spite of the loudness from the roar of a raging fire or the extrication tools at a vehicle accident scene. Their ears must be so sensitive that they can hear the faint/muffled cries for help from a victim who is barely able to speak. They must also have the ability to hear changing conditions in their current surroundings.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The boots that cover the feet of the firefighter creates the solid base from where they must stand firm. For the many who can’t comprehend the “why” in what we do, they cannot “walk a mile in our boots”. Though fire boots that cover the feet of firefighters do not come with a set of brakes, they must hold fast when opposing pressure from a water stream wants to push them back. They are boots that must feel when a floor is weakened by fire. They are boots that must be sure-footed when climbing a ladder or walking along a narrow pathway.&nbsp; They are boots that are heavily constructed but become much lighter when there is a call for help. They are boots that march in unison and stand at attention for the fallen.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Firefighter must have hands that are strong, nimble and flexible. They must be able to don their life-saving air supply, tie ropes, hook carabiners, wield heavy iron tools, direct a water stream from a hose with the accuracy of a sharpshooter, use cutters or spreaders with the precision of a surgeon’s scalpel, grab their buddy who is about to fall, search a room completely darkened by smoke to FEEL for the victims who cannot cry out for help and then carry them to safety; ALL done with their protective gloves on.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Firefighters must have eyes with clear vision. They must be able to see what they are doing and to see the effects of their actions. They have to have eyes that can read: read the books, look at the videos but to SEE what is in them, read the building, read the smoke, look for changing conditions, see through the smoke to look for victims and avoid the blinding effects of complacency. It is the eyes that see the destruction, despair, pain, sorrow and the lasting effects upon victims and firefighters alike, but they also see the hope, joy, gratitude and support. They are eyes that will guide the firefighter through their career.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I realize that I have approached the anatomy of the firefighter from a layman’s view, but to be honest; I have read many studies on the psychological search for why firefighters are wired differently. They are very clinical, overly annotated and difficult to follow. Many are opinions and theories not unlike my own.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The two links that I provided are both excellent. Please read them and then share your thoughts.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Here ends the lesson.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">TCSS.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><b><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. All articles by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form without expressed permission.</span></b></span><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-5649642457049693075?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-56496424570496930752011-12-04T21:34:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:14.072ZChiefReason for Dummiesnoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Over the years, I have had others try to tell me how to blog and what to blog.&nbsp;</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">What they fail to understand is that just like anyone who writes, you develop a style that becomes distinctive and that differentiates you from others who engage in that type of writing, because let's face it; blogging is writing.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">With that said, it has also been suggested to me on occasion that I shouldn't blog about politics at a fire service website, because it isn't about fire service issues.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Really? The fire service in our country has no ties to politics? That is absurd.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">First of all, I blog on a wide range of subjects/issues.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">When a fire service issue strikes me, I will blog about it, as I have. The funny thing is that there are several bloggers who blog at the many fire blog sites about fire service issues-many on the SAME issues. How many ways can you say the same thing and make it interesting?</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I know a few can bring different perspectives to the same issue, but in the end, they pretty much beat a dead horse, don't they?</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Now more than ever, politics is having negative impacts on many of us.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And if politics isn't impacting the fire service, then why do we have so many lobbyists lobbying for fire service legislation and why is so much money being donated to political candidates by fire service organizations, including unions?</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I know why many shy away from political discussions.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">It's because of emotion and sometimes, raw emotion.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">You see; it's hard to convince someone to change their political views and even harder to get someone to change their political party.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">When we decide that we like and support certain politicians from the various political parties, we want to believe that we have made an intelligent decision and when someone else challenges us on our choices, we believe that our intelligence is being questioned. So; we get emotional and take it as a personal attack.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">When the dust has settled, a discussion has degenerated into an argument and the argument degenerates further into a verbal brawl.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">That makes it very unpleasant for someone willing to state their political position.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I GET IT!</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">But, if we don't state our views, then we have become sheep, willing to place our fates into the hands of people bought and paid for by OUR tax dollars and I'm sorry, but that's not how I want to live.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The fact is that government and the politicians who populates it have become the problem.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Why?</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Because the fire service thought that they would always come first; that they would be taken care of by our government and the politicians.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Take a look at how many firefighters have entered the political arena just in the past ten years and it should answer your questions about why I, for one, blog about politics. Firefighters are getting more involved in the political process to protect what we still have; to preserve the programs that we have fought so hard to get and to further define that linkage between our core missions and our governments; local, state and federal.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Is that the current climate that the fire service enjoys? I don't think so and here's why:</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">WE let it happen. America let it happen.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">We were so naive to believe that our elected officials would make their decisions in our best interests. We became so jaded and detached from the process that we ALLOWED the politicians to work the system to <i>their</i> best advantage, putting us all at an extreme disadvantage.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The politicians have devised a process that is so convoluted and so complex that many of us no longer see a government that is working for the people. We see elitists who are telling us that we don't understand how government works, which is exactly how they devised it.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">If you ever took a civics class, you know how government should work; at least in theory.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">America has sat by for too long and allowed political parties to write rules that marginalize the other side. Representative government has become government by the party in power.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Any hope that we have of fixing the mounting problems in this country are lost in the rules that have stacked the deck against compromise. Too much time and energy has been spent on parties beating the other into submission and because of that, we have a government sitting idle in gridlock. We have representatives scared to do the right thing, because their re-election is at stake and in order to get their golden parachute when they leave office, they will go with the Washington establishment. They can go back to their constituents and make a litany of excuses that will convince their voters that they are working hard for them in Washington!</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I am a registered Republican and I will not apologize for it.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">However; I am prepared to vote out those who were obstructionists at a time when we needed solutions for our debt crisis and high unemployment. Even though I understand the parties' political platform, I also believe that opposing political parties can reach agreement without violating a party's base.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And to take this article full circle...</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">If you believe that blogging about politics doesn't belong at a fire service website; I have two words for you.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Baa-baa.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">TCSS.</span></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"></span><!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:WordDocument> <w:View>Normal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:PunctuationKerning/> <w:ValidateAgainstSchemas/> <w:SaveIfXMLInvalid>false</w:SaveIfXMLInvalid> <w:IgnoreMixedContent>false</w:IgnoreMixedContent> <w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText>false</w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText> <w:Compatibility> <w:BreakWrappedTables/> <w:SnapToGridInCell/> <w:WrapTextWithPunct/> <w:UseAsianBreakRules/> <w:DontGrowAutofit/> </w:Compatibility> <w:BrowserLevel>MicrosoftInternetExplorer4</w:BrowserLevel> </w:WordDocument></xml><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:LatentStyles DefLockedState="false" LatentStyleCount="156"> </w:LatentStyles></xml><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 10]><style> /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;}</style><![endif]--><span style="font-size: small;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial;">The opinions and views expressed arethose of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason.They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.blogger.com/www.fireengineering.com">www.fireengineering.com</a>,Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. Allarticles by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot bereproduced in any form without expressed permission.</span></b></span></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-453813040316059753?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-4538130403160597532011-11-26T23:39:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:14.259ZI Punted; Super Committee Fumbles!noemail@noemail.orgArt GoodrichI punted for our high school football team.<br />Punting was a very strategic part of our offense.<br />Back then; you know, in the "leather helmet" days, there were no fair catches. You either took the chance of catching the ball or letting it hit the ground and bounce until it was downed by the punting team.<br />My punts might average 35-40 yards-not very long-but they were extremely high.<br />The coach at the time taught me a soccer-style of punting that allowed me to kick very high, tight spirals.<br />The idea was that, when the punt returner saw many of my teammates surrounding him, just begging for him to catch it, he would let it bounce and since the ball would hit flat on the ground, it would bounce and then roll a long ways; pinning the opponent deep in their own territory.<br />It was really a thing of beauty.<br />Which is why you CANNOT compare what the Super Committee did today as "punting".<br />Lately, we seem to find ourselves searching for cute, little analogies for failure-utter and complete failure.<br />Failure is not punting.<br />Failure is not getting the punt off at all.<br />And the truth is that punting&nbsp; is more complex than what we are seeing out of our government.<br />So; I am tired of that analogy.<br />How much practice and hard work would you guess that it took me to punt the football accurately?<br />I worked the entire summer before my senior year to completely change my punting style-so much so that I beat out the guy who had punted the three, previous football seasons.<br />THAT is the sweet science of learning the skill, improving it and then executing it at game time.<br />If you want to compare this current crop of legislative losers who are supposed to be "leading" our country to my football team of 1969, then there is no comparison.<br />My team is in our high school's hall of fame and Obama &amp; Company are walking the halls of shame!<br />At a time when we need hall of fame efforts out of our government, we find ourselves with a group that couldn't even carry the water for this country.<br />And I apologize to all of the hard-working trainers and assistants for that remark. I have tons more respect for them than I do for our Congress at the moment.<br />It's time to clean house and put a new team on the field.<br />At least if they punt, it will actually have an impact on the outcome of the game.<br />For the record; what we are witnessing in this country is not some game or sporting event.<br />Our elected officials need to stop reaching into their bags of cliches, stop making excuses, suck it up and GOVERN.<br />You know; give us something to cheer about.<br />Sorry; they have me doing it, too.<br />But, the clock is running down and there are no more time outs.<br />Crap; I did it again.<br />You get my meaning, though.<br />TCSS.<br /><span style="font-size: small;"><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">The opinions andviews expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who alsowrites as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of </span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;"><a href="http://www.blogger.com/www.fireengineering.com"><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">www.fireengineering.com</span></b></a></span><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWellCorporation or his dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyrightlaws and cannot be re-produced in any form.</span></b></span><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-3543912571650780296?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-35439125716507802962011-11-22T00:48:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:14.415ZOhio; Community Organizing-Platinum Editionnoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I find it hard to believe that no one in the fire blogosphere picked up this post-election story and especially since Ohio Governor John Kasich’s very political existence may have hinged upon its defeat.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">But, $30 million union dollars later, “Issue 2”; otherwise known as SB 5 was repealed by the voters of Ohio and Governor Kasich was left wondering “why”.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">From my perspective, it was the classic political cage match. </span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The union brought its street fighting style and the conservatives who thought that they were going to hold collective bargaining to the days before John L. Lewis came to the fight believing that there would be “rules”. Consequently, it was no contest.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">This story in Ohio had dominated the news media from sea to shining sea since early April with so much media muscle that you had to wonder what Kasich had up his sleeve to beat back this well-organized union effort. If he had a plan, he wasn’t telling anyone.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And now, it has many circles believing that this was the litmus test for Obama’s re-election, even though on the same day that Ohio was voting to protect collective bargaining, they were voting down ObamaCare AND most of the tax increases for many of the school districts in Ohio. Huh?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Both sides claimed victories. However; I think both sides were too full of themselves to see the unintended consequences of Election Night’s results and here’s why:</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">First; the union thinks that this victory is the end all for any effort to limit their right to represent their members in the public sector, when all that it has done is given the state an opportunity to write another bill that will be more palatable for Ohio voters to chew on. And in the meantime, watch how many jobs are slashed in order to balance the state budget.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">In fact; when I saw the results of the vote, the first thing that came to my mind was, “Oh-oh; now there will be big layoffs”. A blogger in Ohio seems to agree. See the link:</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><a href="http://thirdbasepolitics.blogspot.com/2011/11/issue-2-defeated.html"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">http://thirdbasepolitics.blogspot.com/2011/11/issue-2-defeated.html</span></a><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I have to wonder if Governor Kasich thought anyone in Ohio with a computer would visit the website that answered the many questions surrounding SB 5. I went to the site and took a tour and I must say that it was very thorough, but with trust in government at an all-time low, how many were going to believe those answers. Check out the SB 5 FAQ here:</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><a href="http://www.aproundtable.org/pdfs/faqonOH_SB5.pdf%20"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">http://www.aproundtable.org/pdfs/faqonOH_SB5.pdf </span></a><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Does Ohio have a balanced budget law?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">From what I understand, they don’t have a balanced budget requirement per se, but if you look at their state constitution, it would indicate that the legislators cannot spend more money than they take in during a fiscal year. According to the state website, there are provisions that speak to the balanced budget issue. I quote the following from the state guidebook:</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><i><b><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Balanced Budget Requirements</span></b><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Although no one statute or section of the Ohio</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Constitution explicitly states that Ohio must keep its</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">budget in balance, there are several provisions that,</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">when construed together, make such a requirement</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">clear. The directives in Revised Code sections</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">126.05 and 126.07 along with Article II, Section</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">22, Article VIII, Sections 1 through 3, and Article</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">XII, Section 4 of the Ohio Constitution ensure that</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Ohio keeps its budget balanced by:</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">â€&cent; limiting the state’s ability to incur debt;</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">â€&cent; requiring the General Assembly to provide</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">for raising revenue sufficient to defray state</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">expenses each year;</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">â€&cent; permitting money in the state treasury to be</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">spent only pursuant to an appropriation made</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">by law;</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">â€&cent; limiting the duration of appropriations to two</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">years;</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">â€&cent; requiring the Governor to curtail spending in</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">the event of insufficient revenue.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">If appropriations bills that set forth a balanced</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">budget cannot be enacted and approved by the</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Governor in time to become effective on or shortly</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">after July 1 of the new fiscal biennium, an “interim”</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">appropriations bill is necessary to provide for</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">continued funding on an emergency basis. Usually,</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“interim” appropriations bills provide funding for a</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">month, but on occasion they have been enacted for</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">shorter or longer periods.</span></i><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The entire guidebook can be viewed here:</span><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span></span><br /><span style="font-size: small;"><a href="http://www.lsc.state.oh.us/guidebook/chapter8.pdf"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">http://www.lsc.state.oh.us/guidebook/chapter8.pdf</span></a><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I have also included Ohio state employee pension definitions here:</span><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span></span><br /><span style="font-size: small;"><a href="http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/145.01"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/145.01</span></a><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Now; because I am a full service blogger, I have crunched some numbers for you. I have used the state of South Carolina as a comparison to Ohio, because, quite frankly, South Carolina is a right-to-work state and unions often cite right-to-work states as “problematic”. I am in no way endorsing one over the other; at least, not this time!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">It was widely reported that the unions poured $30 million into their efforts to beat back SB 5. Given that there are 358,276 state union employees in Ohio, that figures out to $83,735 per employee that was spent to preserve their collective bargaining rights. That’s breath-taking!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">State employees in Ohio who are considered full time employees earn $40,603 on the average and part-time employees average $9861 per year and that is NET pay; not gross pay. South Carolina full time employees, on the average, earn $34,203 per year and part-time employees earn $9925 per year. In both states, it was noted that over 54 percent of the public employees were in education.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">With regards to pensions and benefits, Ohio state employees contributes 10 percent pre-tax per pay period to their pension and the state kicks in 14 percent for the state employees. They also get 10 paid holidays and can choose from five medical plans for medical care. Cost is $26.74 - $30.50 per month for individuals and $78.91 - $89.25 per month for families. The state pays the remainder of the premium in all cases. Dental coverage is free to the employee and dependents. The state pays the full cost of the dental coverage. Vision care is also free. Life insurance is equal to a year’s salary. That is; if the employee earns $40,000 a year, then their life insurance policy is worth $40,000.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">In South Carolina, state employees contribute 6.5 percent into their retirement fund and the state kicks in 9.24 percent. They have the choice of putting it into a 401K plan or the South Carolina Deferred plan. They get 12 paid holidays and can choose from 3 medical plans for medical care. Each plan costs the state $260 per individual. Employees pay $93.46 per month for the standard plan or $185.56 verses $251 per month to either of two HMO plans. However; premiums are due to go up. Dental coverage is free and the state pays $11.71 per employee per month in premiums. Vision care is $7.76 per month for employees choosing to take it. Life insurance is $3000 if the employee is under age 70 and $1500 for those over age 70. Employees also qualify for annual and sick leave that they can accrue up to 180 days, if they have been employed for at least one year.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And speaking of “sick” leave; I offer you this: sick time “cash outs”. A small piece taken from the article states:<i> In Ohio, 2,164 state retirees eligible to cash out sick time at a 55 percent rate received an average of $5,646 in the 2011 fiscal year. More than 4,300 departing Florida employees who retired or otherwise left state service last fiscal year averaged about $3,000 in sick-time payments. At least five received 10 times that. </i></span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span></span><br /><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Read the entire article here:</span><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"> </span><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span></span><br /><span style="font-size: small;"><a href="http://www.qconline.com/archives/qco/display.php?id=569521"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">http://www.qconline.com/archives/qco/display.php?id=569521</span></a><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">On an annual basis, state legislators in Ohio earn approximately $19,600 in gross retirement benefits-about the same as a teacher or police officer. In South Carolina, state legislator earn $10,400 in gross retirement benefits annually.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">So that you can see the data that I have quoted for yourselves, I have included the links:</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Ohio state employees’ salaries listed:</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><a href="http://sunshinereview.org/index.php/Ohio_state_government_salary"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">http://sunshinereview.org/index.php/Ohio_state_government_salary</span></a><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">South Carolina state employees’ salaries listed:</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><a href="http://sunshinereview.org/index.php/South_Carolina_state_government_salary"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">http://sunshinereview.org/index.php/South_Carolina_state_government_salary</span></a><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Also, at the same time that population has grown less than 2 percent in Ohio, it has risen in South Carolina by 15 percent in the past ten years. I’m just sayin’â€&brvbar;</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">AND to be fair; since Illinois leads the nation in unfunded pension obligations of at least $85 billion, we are seeing more news outlets pressing our state government to do something. However; in most of the country where the entitlement programs are the “third rail”, hot button issues; here in Illinois, it’s messing with the unions or Mike Madigan that could be your political hemlock.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">See opinion piece here:</span><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">&nbsp;</span></span><br /><span style="font-size: small;"><a href="http://www.qconline.com/archives/qco/display.php?id=569546"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">http://www.qconline.com/archives/qco/display.php?id=569546</span></a><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">So; was the defeat of SB 5 in Ohio the result of a very unpopular Governor John Kasich as Brent Larkin of Cleveland.com would suggest in his article?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Or is this just another example of how powerful the Obama community organizing efforts can be, because, let’s face it; the Obama Administration was backing the union’s efforts to defeat SB 5?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And with that said, then why was Obama willing to lose on healthcare in Ohio?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">With this victory, will we see the many fire departments like Chillicothe, Columbus and Cleveland that have already been cut restored or will we see more departments being downsized as the various governments struggle with a constituency who wants the services with no increase in taxes?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">As an example; voters were upset that public employees get healthcare for little or nothing, but yet; THEY VOTED DOWN OBAMACARE!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Voters can definitely be fickle!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Stay tuned. Ohio was only the beginning and not the end.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><i><b><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.</span></b></i></span><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-970365244106596495?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-9703652441065964952011-11-13T16:32:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:14.571ZPrivate Sacrificenoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-nE8wrNCgzWQ/TrkXdi6dzII/AAAAAAAAADU/OvAvDnJdRIg/s1600/GarbageCan.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-nE8wrNCgzWQ/TrkXdi6dzII/AAAAAAAAADU/OvAvDnJdRIg/s320/GarbageCan.jpg" width="199" border="0" height="320" /></a></div><span style="font-size:small;"> <b><span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">In honor of and with deep appreciation, this goes out to our veterans.</span></b> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"><br /><br />The envelope measured four inches wide by six inches long. It has held up rather well. It almost has a waxy feel to it. I am sure that it was white at one time, but is now a dark beige color.</span> <br /><br /><span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">In the top, left corner scribbled in pencil is: “after 5 days return to Pvt. W. H. Goodrich, Fort Leavenworth Kans.”</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">At the top, middle of the envelope is a postmark that says: “Fort Leavenworth Kans., 9 am, Aug 31, 1942.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"><br /><br />In the top, right corner of the envelope are the postage cancellation lines and the word “free”.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The envelope is addressed: “Mrs. Walter H. Goodrich, Truro, Iowa”.</span> <br /><br /><span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Inside the envelope is one page of what appears to be paper torn from a pad of school note paper. It measures five and one-half inches wide by nine inches long. Written in pencil is the following:</span> <br /><br /><i><span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Fort Leavenworth Kans., Sunday</span> <br /><span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Dearest Lela</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"><br /><br />Just a few lines to let you know I got down here OK.<br /><br />Got in last nite about 9:30 and got up at 4:30 this morning. Sure was a change for me.<br /><br />Well how do you feel by now. I hope you are fine. I sure hated to go to bed last nite all by myself.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I was talking to Carl P. today he said the folks was up at Winterset last nite did you go along if you did, did you have a good time?<br /><br />Well sweetheart I guess I’ll ring off for now And please take care of yourself and don’t worry about nothing tell all the folks I said Hello.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Don’t write till you hear from me again because I probably won’t be here long enough to get any mail.<br /><br />Over</span><br /><br /><span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Well honey I guess I’ll close this time. And until I see you I’ll be thinking of you all the time.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I’ll write later.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"><br /><br />Oceans &amp; Oceans of love,</span><br /><span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Your Husband Gotch</span></i> <br /><br /><span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">My dad passed away in 1992, having served in both theaters of World War II. Yes; his nickname was “Gotch”.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Dad enlisted in the Army and was inducted on August 15, 1942. He was assigned to Battery E, 71st Coast Artillery (AA) as a private first class initially, but ended his service with the 1474th Engineer Maintenance Company as a Tech 3. He first served overseas in Germany and then went on to the Philippines. He was discharged on January 18, 1946. He was awarded a service stripe, Overseas Service Bar, American Campaign Medal, European-African-Middle Eastern Theater Ribbon with Bronze Battle Star, Asiatic-Pacific Theater Ribbon, Good Conduct Medal and the World War II Victory Medal.</span> <br /><br /><span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Like many other soldiers, he said good-bye to his pregnant wife, his parents, his brothers and sisters and left to serve his country. I have his GI-issued Bible, a small, olive drab version that zips up. It is my most cherished possession of Dad’s. Inside is a uniform patch (Tech Staff Sergeant) and a picture of him on an anti-aircraft gun in Washington, DC; his gig before he left for Europe (Germany) in 1944.<br /><br />By then, Mom and Dad had fathered a son, Roger Allen in 1941, but who died just six weeks later; my sister Donna, who was born in 1942 and just 2 months after Dad joined the Army. Mom gave birth to another son, Walter, Jr. on December 11, 1943, while Dad was stationed in Washington DC. Junior was born with a defective heart and would die in February, 1944. Dad could not get home, because he had shipped out for Germany. I have the exchange of telegrams and it is heart wrenching to read of Dad’s futility and frustration of not being there for his family. I also think about the irony of the many parents who were being notified that their sons had died in the war, but Dad received word that his son had died while he was going off to war; his private sacrifice, if you will.<br /><br />And there has always been the emptiness in me of never knowing my two, older brothers.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">My mother passed away in 1999. While we were clearing out her apartment, I found a small suitcase to the back of her closet and inside the suitcase were letters and cards that they exchanged while they were apart. Also in that suitcase were never-before-seen pictures of my two, deceased brothers.<br /><br /></span><span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">This letter that I share with you is to show you what gave our soldiers their strength. Letters were the only mode of communication for the three years that Dad served in the war. He got one leave before he left for Germany, so he got to see my sister, Donna and father Walter, Jr. He would not see Donna again until he was discharged. He only saw pictures of Walter, Jr. I should note that both Roger and Walter, Jr. are buried at Babyland in the Osceola, Iowa cemetery.</span> <br /><br /><span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">No phone; no Internet; just letters written in pencil on tablet paper.</span> <br /><br /><span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">When we discuss the importance of writing; ultimately, the discussion will turn to those who don’t feel that writing skills are important.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">But, I can tell you that writing letters that clearly communicated feelings exchanged between husband and wife; mothers and fathers to her sons and daughters; and boyfriends to their girlfriends gave those serving in the war the will to accomplish their mission.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"><br /><br />And THAT is powerful!</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Dad had beautiful penmanship and his passion and love that he conveyed in his letters were with crystal clarity.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I hope that Dad’s letter to Mom has given you all warm hearts and good thoughts on this day.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"><br /><br />I miss you both, but Dad; I am so very proud of you and thankful to those who have served our great country.</span> <span style="font-family:Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"><br /><br />Art</span></span><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-6603370764298649037?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-61607329042505388772011-11-08T11:52:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:14.774ZLit Fires; Light Sentencesnoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"></span><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Want to kill off an evening or two in front of your computer?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Google “firefighter arson”.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Then, kick back and prepare to get angry!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">From the lame and pathetic excuses offered up by the accused to the light sentences handed down to the guilty; it’s enough to get this old boy’s blood boiling.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Over the years, I have written a few blogs about this fire service issue and one thing remains trueâ€&brvbar;</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">It is still a big problem for the nation’s fire service.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Why?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I think that part of the problem is that sentences for those firefighters convicted of arson are not strong enough to act as a deterrent for the next idiots&nbsp; who masquerade as firefighters while setting fires.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Look at the most recent band of firefighter arsonists:<a href="http://www.cbs3springfield.com/story/15593975/former-firefighters-sentenced-to-3-years-behind-bars"> http://www.cbs3springfield.com/story/15593975/former-firefighters-sentenced-to-3-years-behind-bars</a>.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Two-the “ringleaders”-were sentenced to THREE years in prison for a “string” of arsons. “String” means that prosecutors weren’t exactly sure how many fires were set.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Two others were sentenced to three years PROBATION. A fifth firefighter will be sentenced next month (November). I am guessing that he will also receive probation.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And I sit here shaking my head!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Is it because these public safety predators are connected to the privileged class of their communities? Is their daddy or other relatives on the fire department or are past members? Or maybe they have a relative on the city council or fire board? It’s worth researching and discussing.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Is it because they are often “young adults”? Often times, the court system goes lenient because they don’t want to see this “one mistake” blight their record for the rest of their lives? You have seen it in the court testimony: This is a mistake made by otherwise ‘good kids’! Yeah; right. It’s as if they are comparing arson to tee-peeing someone’s house.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">But, it seems that someone has to die in the fire or in close approximate time to the fire to see any significant sentences handed down.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Does anyone remember the case of Caleb Lacey? </span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">He set a fire just down from where he lived so that he could be the first there and makes heroic rescues. He confessed to his crime, but claimed he was innocent. He received 25 years to life. Here’s the link:&nbsp; <a href="http://articles.nydailynews.com/2010-04-09/news/27061282_1_volunteer-firefighter-arson-case-young-sons">http://articles.nydailynews.com/2010-04-09/news/27061282_1_volunteer-firefighter-arson-case-young-sons</a>.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">What if someone had not died in the fire that he was convicted of setting? For the record; FOUR died in this fire.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Had there only been property damage and no fatalities, would his have been another case with an anemic sentence of less than 5 years in prison or worse; probation?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Based upon many of the cases that I have reviewed, I would have to say “yes”.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The problem might also lay with the legal definition of “arson”.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The legal definition from USlegal.com is: Intentional wrongful setting of fires and possession of explosives is governed by state criminal laws, which vary by state. Federal laws also govern possession of explosives, such as on an airplane. Arson is committed when a person intentionally damages a building by starting or maintaining a fire or causing an explosion. The arsonist's knowledge or suspicion that a person may occupy the building when it is on fire will heighten the seriousness of the charge. Arson may be committed by an act of recklessness which results in a fire.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">In some states, if the building is not inhabited or is determined to be uninhabitable, then a charge of arson may not apply. That is left to the authority having jurisdiction (AHJ). I would guess that some type of criminal mischief charge may be filed. Again; it could depend on WHO is being charged.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Here in Illinois, if a public safety employee is injured as the result of a deliberately set fire (arson), aggravating circumstances exist for additional sentencing guidelines.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">So, it is clear that it may be unclear when you have a fire that has been set that it may or may not be arson and even if it was determined to be arson, mitigating issues might result in light sentences upon conviction.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">With that said, I have to ask about the betrayal of the public’s trust when a firefighter sets a fire. Shouldn’t there be an automatic prison term for this betrayal, regardless of whether it is defined as “arson”? </span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">In my opinion, betraying the public trust should bring a minimum prison sentence of at least five years. No; I’m not saying that we are better than the public. I am saying that we are different from the public that we have sworn to serve.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">But, from what I have seen, few judges have addressed the betrayal of public trust when they sentence firefighters for setting fires.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">In my mind, betraying public trust in the commission of this type of crime is very disturbing and very serious, because every firefighter everywhere is forced to fight this stigma that is put on public display the minute a firefighter is arrested for setting fires. Innocent until proven guilty is dead on arrival as soon as the headline appears.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">It has been the subject of investigative news shows such as Dateline. Documentaries have been done on the more prolific firefighter arsonists.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Way back in the 1980s, a firefighter setting fires was a subplot in a little movie titled “Backdraft”. Axe, played by Scott Glenn, was setting fires, because the mayor was making cutbacks. Bull, played by Kirk Russell, found out about it and you know the rest. Have a tissue ready at the end if you watch it. Yeah; I still choke up when I watch it.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Firefighter arson has been referred to as the fire service’s “dirty little secret” for too many years, but the secret is out. It is front page news and lead stories for the entire world to see.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Even today, many firefighters STILL struggle to engage in the discussion of it.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And I know that there are fire departments who still believe that they can handle this “problem” internally.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Simply put; they kick out their problem and kick it down the road to another unsuspecting fire department, where the mutt can resume his fire-setting ways. In the process, I think it opens the door to charges of complicity or conspiracy on the part of the fire department.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">To make my position on firefighter arson crystal clear; a firefighter charged and convicted of arson should receive a sentence of no less than 10 years for the crime of arson, 5 years for betraying the public’s trust and NO probation, unless it comes after the prison sentence has been served.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And while we are at it, make firefighter arson a federal offense. That will throw off any hometown feel for the favorite “home boys”.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">A bit irrational, you say? </span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Not a chance.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">I have been looking at this fire service scourge for over 20 years. We need to put down the books by Dr. Spock and pick up B.F. Skinner.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">As I was writing this, the NVFC released a new report on firefighter arson. It is in a downloadable PDF and can be found here <a href="http://www.nvfc.org/media/news/nvfc-releases-report-on-firefighter-arson/">http://www.nvfc.org/media/news/nvfc-releases-report-on-firefighter-arson/</a>, but let me warn you; if you read the report, then you might be admitting that the fire service does indeed have a firefighter arson problem (over 100 cases a YEAR, folks and that’s just the ones we know of).</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Let me hear your thoughts.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">TCSS.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><b><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. All articles by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form without expressed permission.</span></b><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-4583734717572478937?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-45837347175724789372011-11-01T12:39:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:14.961ZChiefReason’s 2011 Halloween Spookticklenoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"></span><b><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Author’s Note: The kid in me comes out twice a year; Christmas and Halloween. I hope that I have managed to entertain you with this tale. Please enjoy the loose ends and see how many obscure references you can find as you read on.</span></b><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">It’s the morning of Halloween in Mockingbird Heights.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Mockingbird Heights is a sleepy little hollow that is nestled in between Haddonfield and Savoy. It has been said often that you can get there from anywhere.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">With a population of 7,000 inhabitants, Mockingbird Heights has big city appeal, but with a small town’s charm.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Mayor Arnie Cunningham devotes a lot of time to his mayoral duties, but it is an elected part-time position. His “real job” is as a supervisor for a railroad maintenance crew.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">It is a community that is made up of working moms and dads who have a couple of kids looking forward to going off to college upon graduation from Bates High School.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">There are very few houses for sale, properties are well kept and serious crime is non-existent.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The motels in town see a steady business year-round, because Lake Crystal is nearby, where you can boat, fish, hunt, hike and ski.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Lee Brackett leads a police department of six full-time and four part-time officers.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Rick Grimes is the chief of the combination fire department, where firefighters also serve as EMTs for medical first response. The county hospital provides the ambulance service and has strategically placed paramedic ambulances throughout the county.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">For the kids in town, there are playgrounds at two, city parks, baseball fields, a soccer facility, bike path and a skate park.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">So, it is a city that is doing what it can to keep its residents and to attract new ones.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Chief Grimes was enjoying his Saturday, working the leaves in his yard towards his garden patch, when he got a call on his cell phone.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“Rick; it’s Lou. We have a situation here at the station”, said Lou.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“What you got?” asked Rick.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“It’s Gomez. He didn’t wake up”, said Lou.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“I’m not following you, Lou”, said Rick.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“Adam was unresponsive. He must have died in his sleep”, said Lou.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“He was in great shape. He just had his physical. He was good to go”, said Rick.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“I can’t explain it, but you need to come down”, said Lou.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“I’m on my way”, said Rick, as he put his phone away.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Chief Grimes was driving to the station and was trying to make sense of the situation. His firefighters were all in good shape; benefitting from the weight/exercise room at the fire station. Even the older guys were doing cardio, but Gomez was a stud. He was benching 350 and he could ride the stationary bike for an hour and barely break sweat! He was only 25 years old and just one year ago; he and Billy Nolan were recognized for their efforts to save a homeless person from a burning, abandoned farmhouse.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">IT MADE NO SENSE!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Chief Grimes got to the station and the paramedics and coroner were already there. They recorded the death of Adam Gomez at 7:40 am.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“Any thoughts, Bob?” asked Rick.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Robert “English Bob” England had been coroner for many years and had pretty good instincts, but this death even baffled him.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“Hmm; an otherwise healthy, young male who appears to have died in his sleep? Doesn’t happen every day, for sure”, said Bob.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“I’m going to take him to the medical examiner and once the ME has done the autopsy, we’ll take him to the Goodbury and Graves Funeral Home”, said Bob.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Lou asked, “What about the Halloween Parade? Do we still want to lead things with the engine?”</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“Yeah; we need to go about our business until we get some answers from the ME”, said Rick.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Jason was your typical teenager. He was a senior at Bates High School. He had a part-time job after school at Brooks and Boyle Hardware Store, but he had worked the past two summers as a counselor at Camp Crystal Lake. He had saved enough money to buy a good, used car. His dad was a certified auto mechanic, so there was no question that Jason was getting a “cherry”.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Like most Saturdays, Jason would drive over to Haddonfield, do a little shopping and eat a burger. Today, he would take Munster Road as always and pick up his costume for the Halloween party at Chucky’s.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">He was listening to some Rob Zombie when his cell phone rang.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">As he reached over into the seat to get his phone, he ever-so-briefly took his eyes off of the road and when he looked up, he swerved, leaving the road and striking a tree head on. Everything went black, as a hideous laugh could be heard coming from his phone.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The tones dropped at the fire station for a 10-50 PI on Munster Road.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Billy Nolan got into his gear, had his helmet in his left hand and jumped to the step on the officer’s side of the engine, as he had done countless times.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">But this time, his right foot slipped, he lost his grip on the grab handle, struck his forehead violently on the step and then, he fell back and struck the back of his head on the concrete floor. Billy would not regain consciousness.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Jason was extricated and transported to Thorndike Memorial Hospital in critical condition.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Chief Grimes is having a major meltdown!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">In less than 24 hours, he has lost two of his best firefighters and answers were elusive.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">He was at the hospital with many of his firefighters, holding vigil over Billy, but the conversations in the hall flew between Billy Nolan, then Adam Gomez. </span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“How/why; how/why” was on everyone’s tongues; all questions and no answers.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Police chief Brackett was there with the county investigator, Jack Cassidy, taking statements and trying to link something/anything to this strange chain of events.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Then, Jason was brought in and immediately taken into surgery. Jason was being combative and yelling; symptomatic of a head injury.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Lewis “Lou” King thought that he heard Jason say, “I set THAT fire!”</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Lou went to Chief Grimes and asked him, “Did you hear that?”</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“Hear what?” asked Rick.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“What that kid said as the medics wheeled him by”, said Lou.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“Naw; too much stuff going on”, said Rick.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“I think he said, ‘I set that fire’, said Lou.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Lou and Rick looked at each other, but said not a word. Their trance was broken by Wolfie, the station dog, who was standing near an exit door and barking like crazy, but no one was there or at least one that could be SEEN.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“Rick? Rick! Do you think he was talking about that fire last Halloween at the old Otteson farm?” asked Lou.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">“Well, it IS the only fire in the last couple of yearsâ€&brvbar;” as Rick’s voice trails off. “I’m going to the station and pull the reports.”</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><i><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">On October 31, 2010 at 8:15 pm, a fire was reported in the vacant house at the old Otteson farm.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">As crews arrived, the house was well involved and screams with the force and fury of a train whistle could be heard coming from inside of the upstairs of the house.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">With no time to lose, Adam Gomez and Billy Nolan, without benefit of a charged hose line and in full turnout, including SCBAs, entered the back door, crawled through the laundry room, kitchen, living room and to the stairway that led to the upstairs.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">As they reached the top of the stairs, they could see a person laying in the fetal position on a bedroom floor.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Just as they were starting to crawl down the hallway, they heard the engine’s air horn sounding the evacuation signal. Nolan had to forcibly pull Gomez back. As he did, a badly burned head looked up and straight at them, opened its mouth and took one last breath.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">As Gomez and Nolan got to the stair’s landing, they broke the window, rolled out onto a porch roof and then jumped/fell to the ground; their turnout gear and face pieces completely destroyed by the heat.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">The fire was determined to be accidental in nature, caused by a transient named Edward Gein. Several liquor bottles were found in the burned out rubble, it was cold and it is believed that Gein passed out after starting a fire to keep warm.</span></i><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">At least; it made sense at the time.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Gomez and Nolan were both awarded medals of valor by the governor for their efforts to save the victim.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">And now?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Gomez was dead, Nolan was comatose, barely clinging to life and a kid who may not survive his injuries may be admitting to setting a fire that killed a homeless person.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Was the present series of events just bad luck, coincidence or maybe, just maybe; revenge from the angry spirit of Edward Gein?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Did Adam Gomez receive a “visit” while he slept? Did something so horrific scare him into a medical emergency?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Why did Jason swerve suddenly, as if there was something in the road that he was about to hit with his car? Who called him and why were they laughing into the phone?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Did Billy Nolan “slip” while getting into the engine or was he tripped?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Why was Wolfie barking at the hospital’s exit door? Was it the wind or was it something that goes bump in the night?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Will others die in a mysterious and unexplainable manner?</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">It would seem that only Edward Gein would know the answers.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Say “hi”. That just might be him in the picture that was taken at the Otteson farmhouse. Really!</span></span><br /><br /><div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;"><a href="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Tny6rRqoJV8/Tq32Ke2pxtI/AAAAAAAAADM/zUghES-4j4Y/s1600/Ottesonpic.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" src="http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Tny6rRqoJV8/Tq32Ke2pxtI/AAAAAAAAADM/zUghES-4j4Y/s1600/Ottesonpic.jpg" /></a></div><div style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;"></span><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Happy Halloween!</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">TCSS.</span><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><br style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;" /><b><span style="font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif;">Disclaimer: It’s all fiction and a product of my imagination. Any similarities to persons, places or ghosts are purely coincidental. This is not a teachable moment; it is escapism and entertainment. Or a reasonable facsimile thereof. Oh and it’s copyrighted under The Adventures of Jake and Vinnie&Acirc;&copy; umbrella.</span></b></span><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-52298914813351559?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-522989148133515592011-10-31T01:15:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:15.117ZCity Fires; Chief “Retires”noemail@noemail.orgArt GoodrichThe Moline, Illinois city council, on the advice of the city administrator, plans to cut 12 firefighter/paramedic positions and privatize EMS in the city. Immediately after the decision was made, Chief Ron Miller announced his resignation/retirement. See associated links:<br /><br /><a href="http://www.wqad.com/news/wqad-moline-fire-chief-resigns-101811,0,346191.story">http://www.wqad.com/news/wqad-moline-fire-chief-resigns-101811,0,346191.story</a><br /><br /><a href="http://www.fireengineering.com//articles/2011/10/il-fire-chief-resigns-after-ems-privatization.html">http://www.fireengineering.com//articles/2011/10/il-fire-chief-resigns-after-ems-privatization.html</a><br /><br /><a href="http://www.firefighterclosecalls.com/news/fullstory/newsid/147661">http://www.firefighterclosecalls.com/news/fullstory/newsid/147661</a><br /><br />So that you might afford me some relative credibility, let me say that Moline is one of the "Quad” cities, I am but mere minutes away and over the years, I have come to know many firefighters from the Quad City area. They are a hearty and committed bunch. They are not a very vocal bunch unless pressed and very few run afoul with the law. They take their profession very seriously and many have started and retired from their departments.<br /><br />First of all, I am of the opinion that the Moline city administrator presented information that grossly understated the impact that the decision would have on Moline residents.<br /><br />Did I say grossly understated?<br /><br />Now that I think about it, he never mentioned the negative impact to services; he only mentioned the positive impact to the city budget.<br /><br />I honestly don’t think that many residents of Moline ever had a clue as to how much bang for their buck a firefighter in their city was giving them.<br /><br />Let’s see; there would be water rescue, hazmat, technical rescue, juvey firesetter intervention programs, fire prevention, fire suppression, paramedic level emergency medical response and oh yeah; add mentors to their junior firefighters.<br /><br />Their city administrator expressed his unhappiness with many firefighters who live outside the city limits, but it seems that past city negotiators haven’t included residency requirements in their collective bargaining agreement, so why all of the fuss now?<br /><br />And besides; many firefighters are involved in their home communities AND the city they work. Plus, they reach out to surrounding communities.<br /><br />When I was active, Moline FD’s Operation Prom Night program received wide recognition for their firefighters, who, in the beginning, reached into their own pockets to buy equipment. Did I mention that Bill Grambling and crew did it on their own time? Stop by sometime and I’ll show you a video of our Operation Prom Night production that would not have been possible without them.<br /><br />You know darn well that Mr. City Boss is already thinking about closing a station. You cut 12 jobs and all of a sudden, you don’t need all of those stations, right? That’s why they call them “bean-counters”. Their common sense and their logical thinking don’t amount to a hill of beans!<br /><br />You should travel to Moline and visit the “downtown” and riverfront. Between whiffs of dead carp, you can smell the money. Actually, if you know what a construction project costs in Illinois, you can see it for yourself. Plus; they just increased garbage collection fees by a couple of bucks a month. Gotta keep the curbside services going, but public safety? Please refer to “dead carp” comment.<br /><br />I have to wonder how many of the private ambulance employees will be at the river’s edge throwing sandbags the next time the Big Muddy floods? Firefighters are there along with the other volunteers throwing bags, helping to treat those hurt while doing so and all the while, demonstrating their commitment to their city.<br /><br />Chief Miller was hailed for standing up for his principles by stepping down. It was obvious to me that he wasn’t fond of his “bosses” for their lack of public safety priorities.<br /><br />Though he made a strong statement by resigning, I have to wonder if it wouldn’t have been bolder on his part to stay and fight for a better future for the Moline Fire Department. <br /><br />I’ll admit that when you reach my age, your passion for your work is still there, but your energy level and enthusiasm isn’t as high as it once was. And you can’t drink enough 5 hour Energy to get it back.<br /><br />I know Chief Miller and his fire department still cares as much today as they did 30 years ago about providing the best services to their city. Unfortunately, the city “leaders” believe that they can cut into that service without affecting said services.<br /><br />Chief Miller will be proven right, although he will be retired.<br /><br />And a congenial relationship between fire department and their city will become contentious.<br /><br />But hey; at least Moline won’t be littered with yard waste. The city picks it up for “free”.<br /><br />How’s that for value added?<br /><br />TCSS.<br /><br />The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.<div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-1378429478287509674?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-13784294782875096742011-10-25T01:08:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:15.257ZMay I Demonstrate?noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<span style="font-size: small;">I have stood by and watched this “Occupy Something/Anything” movement move from a crawl to almost motionless and all the while, telling myself to keep quiet.<br /><br />But I cannot any longerâ€&brvbar;<br /><br />Those of us who grew up in the 60s/70s have an appreciation for the protests and demonstrations that rolled through the better part of two decades. It was in those days that I spent my time as a radical. I did not consider myself a liberal, though in the strict definition, I was.<br /><br />Countless books and songs were written and several documentary movies were made to memorialize a fertile history of movements that not only changed our country, but much of the Western World.<br /><br />I don’t profess to be an expert of this period, but having lived through it, I believe that I have some first-hand knowledge or at least a pointed perspective of many key events.<br /><br />I want to say that we owe this nation’s awakening to protest marches to our British brethren when, in the late 60s, they started the protest years with the “Ban the Bomb” marches.<br /><br />In fact, I have it on good authority that the Peace symbol that adorned our clothing, flags, bumper stickers and album covers in the 60s/70s originated in Great Britain.<br /><br /><i>Does anyone remember the green Peace emblem that symbolized the “Ecology Now” movement?</i><br /><br />The Peace symbol became the emblem for our counter culture. It separated us along generational lines and symbolized our anti-war (Vietnam), anti-establishment (parents/adults), anti-military industrial complex (government), anti-government (Washington), anti-discrimination, anti-authority (police); in addition to shepherding in the Feminist (Burn the Bra) Movement.<br /><br /><i>Please excuse me while I reflectâ€&brvbar;</i><br /><br />Ah; those were the days.<br /><br />I mean; we had very structured and very defined causes that allowed the faces of the “revolution” to move freely between them. From Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, Tom Hayden, David Dellinger, Rennie Davis, Bobby Seale, Angela Davis and poet Allen Ginsberg to name a few; they travelled the country, addressing and leading the masses on the doctrine that identified and united a diverse population of young minds that saw their country in a different light.<br /><br />As we watched the freedom of choice replaced by the military draft; our politics in the hands of the powerful few; gunboat diplomacy; ratcheted rhetoric from the nuclear powers; our freedom of speech silenced with nightsticks, tear gas and guns; demonstrations across the country grew in numbers, intensity and frequency.<br /><br />There was nothing abstract about it-it was REAL! It was not a contrivance of the news media-it bled; it cried and in some cases, died.<br /><br />It was ground-breaking and bone breaking. It was done without cable-vision or political action committees.<br /><br />When I think about the social issues during that period of my youth, I think back to the many misconceptions that came from the “other side”; you knowâ€&brvbar;the Establishment. In their eyes, us “hippies” were socialists, communists and anti-American.<br /><br />What I know is that, among my college mates, there was a lot of discussion about the “Amerika” that we wanted to grow up in and how we could change it.<br /><br />And we knew that we didn’t want it done through force, but rather through education.<br /><br />But then our peaceful path of resistance was destroyed by the Weatherman Underground Organization (WUO).<br /><br />Like many at the time, I believed that it was a “government conspiracy” to discredit and to destroy the movement. Then, the WUO published their “declaration of war”. In my mind, that was the day that the Movement died; but, not my interest in politics and that brings us to the current circumstances.<br /><br />Organizers-if there are any-of the “Occupy Wall Street” movement might have benefited more from an “Occupy Sesame Street” action.<br /><br />Then, the movement would have a face; someone that we could identify the issues with. Granted; it would be Big Bird, Bert or Ernie, but at least they could articulate the “cause” in terms that we could understand, because with each, new interview of a participant wherever there is an “occupation”; some disjointed diatribe tumbles off of someone’s tongue that only adds to the confusion.<br /><br />I mean; the general idea is that protesters oppose Wall Street wealth, but yet; they talk about wanting to re-distribute the wealth!<br /><br /><i>Huh?</i><br /><br />You know; in retrospect, maybe the “face” of this movement should be the bearded Peggy from the cell phone commercials.<i> I could TOTALLY get behind Peggy.</i><br /><br />Do I get from the news coverage that these jobless protesters simply want to receive government checks, live in their parents’ basements and dream of a day when their Link card will be replaced with a government pension to compensate them for the six weeks that they sold magazine subscriptions “back in the day”? <i>Ah; only in America!</i><br />You know; I have a job, own my home free and clear and dabble in the stock market.<br /><br />Does that make me an “enemy” of these movements?<br /><br />Tell you what; I will rent a porta-potty and put it in the park across from my house.<br /><br />Please; have your “movement” THERE!<br /><br />TCSS.<br /><br /><b>The views and opinions expressed are those of the author, Art Goodrich, who also writes under the name ChiefReason.&nbsp; They do not reflect the views and opinions of <a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. Articles written by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form.</b></span><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-6201989693205162136?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-62019896932051621362011-10-20T22:41:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:15.398ZKansas City Was a Ghost Townnoemail@noemail.orgArt GoodrichI arrived in Kansas City on a late Tuesday afternoon and would not leave until Friday morning.<br />While in Kansas City on company business, I would rise early in the morning and would return to my hotel room in the late evening and would grab a cigar, go outside and call my wife. I would return to my room, turn on the TV for the day’s news, grab a bottled water from the fridge and I would sit down and read the Kansas City Star and the USA Today.<br />Then, I would check my emails, put my phone on charge, press my clothes for the next day and when that was done, I would watch TV from my bed until I fell asleep. <br />This was pretty much my routine for this trip, but something crazy was going on Thursday night in my room that I have been unable to logically resolve in my mind.<br />As I said; I was following my nightly routine on Thursday night, except that I packed my two bags, laid out my clothes for the drive home on Friday and put everything else in one location, so that I wouldn’t leave anything behind.<br />Thursday night, I wanted to catch Part 2 of the George Harrison HBO special, so I watched news until it was time for the special.<br />Now; here is where it gets crazy.<br />I want my readers to know this:<br />1)&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;I am not making this up.<br />2)&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;I did not dream it.<br />3)&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;I had not been drinking.<br />4)&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;I am not suffering from senility or dementiaâ€&brvbar; to my knowledge.<br />As I lay on the bed, enjoying the George Harrison special, my refrigerator door opened!<br />I laid there for a bit looking at the fridge and thinking, “Hmmm; that’s strange”.<br />So, I got out of bed, shut the refrigerator door a couple of times to see if there was a problem with the door’s latch and decided that there wasn’t.<br />I got back on the bed and about five minutes later, the refrigerator door opened again!<br />I determined again that the door was not faulty, but when I closed the door this time, I put one of my bags against it just in case. <br />Problem solved!<br />I went back to watching my program, but not for long.<br />The TV picture started acting up. What had been an excellent high definition broadcast was now grainy and the audio was breaking up. I watched for a little while longer, hoping that it would straighten out, but it didn’t.<br />I had no choice but to change the channel and hope that I could catch Part 2 of the George Harrison special on another night.<br />As I lay there watching Patrick Swayze in Roadhouse (probably his best film ever), I heard something above the headboard of my bed.<br />I fought the notion that I heard something, but then, I heard it again.<br />It was the sound of someone scratching on the wall above my bed. I heard it at least three more times. I heard it with the lights off, the lights on and with the TV turned all of the way down.<br />So, I got under my covers and went back to watching Patrick Swayze and Sam Elliot beating up the bad guys.<br />Then, the covers moved at the end of my bed!<br />That is to say that it felt like something tugged on the covers at the end of my bed. Swear to God; I am not making this up!<br />I did not dream it, because, in order to dream, you have to be asleep and I was wide awake, trying to rationalize the refrigerator door, the scratching on the wall and now THIS!<br />I got up, got a drink of water and crawled back into bed, where I started to surrender to my fatigue.<br />I was almost asleep when I heard what sounded like radio static. I looked around the room, then got up and walked around the room, trying to find the source of this noise.<br />Unsuccessful at finding the cause, I got back into bed.<br />I heard it again and leaned over towards the clock radio that was on my bed stand. Ah Hah! It sounded like the source for the noise, so I hit the “off” button and it stopped.<br />Finally; I could get some sleep!<br />I closed my eyes.<br />The radio static was back!<br />I reached down and unplugged the clock radio, causing the static to cease. I attempted to fall asleep, but slumber was not coming very easily.<br />I started my drive home on Friday after about two hours sleep.<br />I was so troubled by this chain of events that I thought about calling my wife and telling her about it, but I was afraid that she wouldn’t take me seriously. After all; I am soon to be 59 years old and am considered by one or two people to be a reasonable person.<br />Anyway, I called her and described the paranormal activity. She almost sounded like she believed me. We discussed it and agreed that it was weird.<br />Upon reflection, this is what I know: <br />1) None of Thursday night’s activities occurred on Tuesday or Wednesday night.<br />2) When I attempted to open the refrigerator door on Friday morning to get my pop and water out, I nearly dislocated my shoulder trying to open the door.<br />3) The noise above my headboard was NOT coming from an adjoining room. My room was at the end of the hall and on a corner. I didn’t HAVE a neighbor on that side.<br />4) I checked the HBO channel on Friday morning and it was working fine.<br />5) I will not stay in Room 337 again, because if you add the numbers together, you get 13!<br />I’m not superstitious.<br />I’m just sayin’â€&brvbar;<br />TCSS.<br />The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of www.fireengineering.com, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.<div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-7111106280468004079?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-71111062804680040792011-10-11T01:58:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:15.601ZOur Incivility Abilitynoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<span style="font-size: x-small;">Whenever I take a business trip, it also gives me the opportunity to cover a wealth of issues in my mind.<br />As I drove to Kansas City, Missouri, I was thinking about an article that I had read in the Sunday paper.<br />In the article, the author attempted to identify where we lost civility and an unwillingness to compromise in our political system.<br />He cited the usual suspects-social media, websites, blogs, talk radio-and offered nothing new.<br />I can easily understand the premise of the article, but I think that a lack of civility goes well beyond politics.<br />Anyone who has been in the fire service since the dot com explosion can remember some of the websites’ discussion forums that quickly erupted into bashing and name-calling. At one particular fire website; many of us refer to those years as the "Flame Wars". It was all made easy because participants could do it anonymously and without fear of revealing their real identities.<br />Fortunately, we don’t have that problem at <br />When you think about how we used to settle our differences, in today’s culture; there is a lot more mental anguish than physical pain. Years ago, if our disagreements didn’t escalate into a fistfight, you could at least talk it out eyeball-to-eyeball; my preferred method for ending a dispute. You see; even back then, I could reason with the bullies.<br />I don’t know exactly when, after Man evolved from grunts to spoken words, when it was that we realized how powerful words could be and how much they could hurt, but if our country’s divorce rate is any indication, our society has become very prolific at it.<br />It is no longer the dreaded "dear john" letter, but rather a very public break up on Facebook.<br />My thoughts took me back to a time when kids had no choice but to follow family rules, respect the word of their parents or suffer dire consequences. Tough love; you know? <br />This trip took me through a part of Iowa where my parents and their families grew up. As a kid, we made many trips to Osceola, Iowa to visit with relatives.<br />It had me thinking about the four hour ride in our station wagon and what we did to occupy our time. That led me to explore the interaction that took place in the car and how little things had to amuse us. I believe that the time spent on those long trips strengthened our family unit. If one of us did something that did NOT amuse, it would have the offender sitting in the front seat between Mom and Dad. Ugh!<br />With eight of us in the car, we had to be civil to each other and respect each other’s "space". I am sure that many other families were very similar, so it is my opinion that civility began with the family unit.<br />That respect for authority in the home extended to the older adults, the schools and the law.<br />Helping the elderly to cross the street was cool; getting sent to the principal’s office was avoided at all costs and violating the law would have your parents comparing you to John Dillinger; public enemy number one during the Great Depression (some may have to Google to get the reference).<br />My generation also remembers the uniquely elevated status that was afforded to coaches. There was no such thing as a coach being too tough on a kid and parents intervening on behalf of their kid were non-existent. There was a code that said that the coach was always right and you NEVER questioned a coach’s decision in regards to you. Like it or not, you had to respect it. It was not an option!<br />Sound familiar?<br />It should!<br />I came up in the fire service at a time when we did what our instructors told us to do. We learned very quickly that questioning the instructor was not the same as asking questions. The smart ones knew it. Questioning the "whys" had its consequences. We didn’t have time to break into focus groups to discuss our feelings. You were told how to do it, shown how to do it and then, you DID it!<br /><i>Subtle<br />Time to get back on point!<br />Politics is just another segment in our society where civility and compromise generally implodes.<br />It hasn’t cornered the market on incivility. It permeates throughout every fiber of our society; from day-care to Medicare, you will have your "could care less" about civility.<br />One of those defining moments where I thought that civility had completely left our country was watching the film footage of our returning Vietnam War veterans. I remember seeing them cursed at, spat on and denied their rightful place in our society. Post war care was scarce.<br />Yeah; there was plenty of incivility shown to our Vietnam vets. I mean; it was bad enough that they fought in a country where they weren’t sure who the enemy was, but then they returned home and were treated like THEY were the enemy.<br />So, I think that this current round of incivility in this country had early roots and has grown over the years. I don’t wish to cite earlier examples, because I wasn’t old enough to appreciate (?) their significance. Those older than me might say that the pre-Civil Rights years found a bounty of incivility in America.<br />Why, just today, as I was sitting at Ma and Pa’s Kettle in Cameron, Missouri, I was thinking about all of the uproar over the comments made by Hank Williams, Jr. on ESPN yesterday and I jotted some notes.<br />Though his comments are the latest example of incivility, his remarks were also taken out of context, in my opinion.<br />First, he compared President Obama and Speaker of the House Boehner playing golf to a meeting between Hitler and Netanyahu. He also referred to the party in power as "the enemy".<br />To be clear, he did NOT call the President "Hitler". He was using an outrageously, hypothetical analogy to describe the magnitude of the differences between President Obama and Republicans. It was very uncivil of Hank Jr. to mention ANYONE in the same breath as the world’s most prolific genocidal maniac.<br />What I find offensive is that the Media is speculating that Hank Jr. was "under the influence".<br />Nope; I think Jr. was under the misguided notion that his words were relevant to the political landscape; that his "celebrity" somehow commands attention.<br />Ironically, it DID get the attention of the ESPN bosses, who pulled Hank’s famously popular promo for <i>Monday Night Football</i>. I guess we live in a country where saying something that’s absurd can get you fired. I think ABC/ESPN were cowards for ending Hank’s gig; believing that they were doing "damage control". What I am hearing on talk radio is that there are more people upset with Hank’s firing than are upset with what he said, but still, my advice to Hank Williams, Jr. would be to shut up and sing!<br />But, alas; this is the world we live in today.<br />Henry David Thoreau wrote "Civil Disobedience" oh, so many years ago. I don’t think that he realized when he wrote it how timeless its pronouncements would be. It was on the required reading list for one of my early political science classes. I remember that he said, </i>peer pressure mixed with a large dose of respect for the senior instructors and your team guaranteed that you wouldn’t even think about bugging out. And you learned to laugh even though you were the butt of the joke.</span><a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/"><u><span style="color: blue; font-size: x-small;"><span style="color: blue; font-size: x-small;">www.fireengineering.com</span></span></u></a><span style="font-size: x-small;">, where everyone must use their real names. It creates an environment that puts a discussion or a stated opinion-however poignant-on a more civil and respectful level.</span><i><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: small;">Must the citizen ever for a moment, or in the least degree, resign his conscience to the legislator? Why has every man a conscience, then?</span></span><span style="font-size: x-small;">I believe that civility and respect are so closely aligned that you really can’t have one without the other, because; if you are respectful, you are being civil and if you are civil, you are being respectful.<br />Here’s hoping that the fire service can raise the quality of the debate and be the shining beacon for civility in all that they do.<br />TCSS<br /><strong>The views and opinions expressed are those of the author, Art Goodrich, who also writes under the name ChiefReason. They do not reflect the views and opinions of </strong></span><a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/"><u><span style="color: blue; font-size: x-small;"><span style="color: blue; font-size: x-small;"><strong>www.fireengineering.com</strong></span></span></u></a><span style="font-size: x-small;"><strong>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. Articles written by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form.</strong></span></i><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-4443007576439434984?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-44430075764394349842011-10-05T01:41:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:15.757ZRemembering Bradley Golden – Now Ten Years Gonenoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:WordDocument> <w:View>Normal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:PunctuationKerning/> <w:ValidateAgainstSchemas/> <w:SaveIfXMLInvalid>false</w:SaveIfXMLInvalid> <w:IgnoreMixedContent>false</w:IgnoreMixedContent> <w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText>false</w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText> <w:Compatibility> <w:BreakWrappedTables/> <w:SnapToGridInCell/> <w:WrapTextWithPunct/> <w:UseAsianBreakRules/> <w:DontGrowAutofit/> </w:Compatibility> <w:BrowserLevel>MicrosoftInternetExplorer4</w:BrowserLevel> </w:WordDocument></xml><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:LatentStyles DefLockedState="false" LatentStyleCount="156"> </w:LatentStyles></xml><![endif]--><!--[if !mso]><img src="http://img2.blogblog.com/img/video_object.png" style="background-color: #b2b2b2; " class="BLOGGER-object-element tr_noresize tr_placeholder" id="ieooui" data-original-id="ieooui" /><style>st1\:*{behavior:url(#ieooui) }</style><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 10]><style> /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;}</style><![endif]--><div class="MsoTitle"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><br /></span></div><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; text-decoration: none; text-underline: none;"></span><i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; text-decoration: none; text-underline: none;">I wrote this story in 2003 and first released it onSeptember 25<sup>th</sup> of that year; two years after the tragic death ofthen 19 year-old Firefighter Bradley Golden, who died in a live burn trainingexercise in Lairdsville, New York. I have posted it every year sincethen to honor and to remember Brad.</span></i><div align="left" class="MsoTitle" style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div align="left" class="MsoTitle" style="text-align: left;"><i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; text-decoration: none; text-underline: none;">It is a story that sparked numerous discussions among thenation’s firefighters. </span></i></div><div align="left" class="MsoTitle" style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div align="left" class="MsoTitle" style="text-align: left;"><i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; text-decoration: none; text-underline: none;">From NFPA 1403 to the age and experience of some of theofficers involved, it compelled us to examine the needless and preventabledeath of a young firefighter who placed his trust in his fellow firefighterswith deadly results</span></i></div><div align="left" class="MsoTitle" style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div align="left" class="MsoTitle" style="text-align: left;"><i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; text-decoration: none; text-underline: none;">I believe that it brought NFPA 1403 into the nationallimelight. No longer could departments ignore the requirements of the standard.In New York,“Bradley’s Law” was passed, making it a criminal offense to use live victims ina live burn training exercise.</span></i></div><div align="left" class="MsoTitle" style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div align="left" class="MsoTitle" style="text-align: left;"><i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; text-decoration: none; text-underline: none;">At the time, though much of the attention of the nationwas on 9/11 and its aftermath, Brad’s story came to serve as a reminder that wecan never take lightly the important task of keeping each other safe; be it ata training exercise or at an incident.</span></i></div><div align="left" class="MsoTitle" style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div align="left" class="MsoTitle" style="text-align: left;"><i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; text-decoration: none; text-underline: none;">Please join me in remembering Bradley Golden, who left usway too soon ten years ago.</span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; text-decoration: none; text-underline: none;"></span></div><div align="left" class="MsoTitle" style="text-align: left;"><br /></div><div align="left" class="MsoTitle" style="text-align: left;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">JUST ENOUGH TIME TO DIE</span></u></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">TheTragic Death of Bradley Golden</span></b></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: left;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">&nbsp;</span></b><b><i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; text-decoration: none; text-underline: none;">&nbsp;</span></i></b></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: left;"><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; text-decoration: none;">First Published9/25/03</span></i></b></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Introduction</span></b></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">OnSeptember 25, 2001, Brad Golden had been on the Lairdsville Fire Department for<i>three weeks</i>; <b>just enough time to die!</b></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Brad wasthe victim of a training exercise that went terribly wrong. It was to be ajoint, live-burn training exercise with Lowell, Westmoreland and Lairdsvillefire departments. It was to be an evening exercise; one that he could have veryeasily chosen not to attend. He had committed to being there and he was a youngman who kept his word and his commitments. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">As it wereon this day, Brad could have gone out with friends. But, according to hisstepfather, Bob Roberts, Brad was “all pumped up about the practice”. Nothingwas going to come between Brad and his dream of being a firefighter; a dreamthat he had held since his days in Clark Mills, where he would watch thefirefighters there. The sirens, the flash of the big rigs going by and thelooks on the faces of the firefighters as they went by were too powerful toresist. Brad was hooked at an early age.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Brad got tolive his dream for three, short weeks. His turnout gear had been given to himduring the previous week to the training exercise. Although he had not trainedto be inside of a structure under fire conditions, he was to play a “victim”for the live-burn and there is the tragic irony. By <i>playing</i> the victims,Brad Golden and Ben Morris <b>became real victims!</b> Ben Morris, afirefighter of less than one year and Adam Croman, RIT consultant and second floorsafety officer, were seriously injured as well.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Ben Morrisonly remembers “waking up” and laying on the ground outside of the structure.Adam Croman escaped from the fiery upstairs by dropping out of a second storywindow and to the ground. Gary Spaven, a second assistant chief and rear sectorguide for the RIT exercise escaped out a window, after calling for a ladder andAlan Baird III, the lead training instructor for the exercise and firstassistant chief for the Lairdsville Fire Department, went out the back of thestructure when conditions inside became untenable.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Brad Goldenwas the last one taken from the structure. Reports say that he was notbreathing and attempts to revive him at the scene and while enroute to thehospital were unsuccessful.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Thecoroner’s official cause of death was <i>asphyxia due to smoke inhalation.</i>Many physiological changes take place in the body when poisonous compounds areintroduced into the body. It is important to understand that, becauseâ€&brvbar;. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">BradleyGolden was dead at age 19.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">NIOSH Report</span></u></b><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"></span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">As a practice, NIOSH does not include names in the publishedsummary of their findings. I am listing the names and their roles in thisincident at the beginning for clarity.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Victim</span></i></b><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> – Bradley Golden</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Firefighter #1</span></i></b><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> – Benjamin Morris</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Firefighter #2/Safety &amp; Ignition Officer</span></i></b><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> – Adam Croman</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Chief</span></i></b><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> – Westmoreland Chief James Kimball</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">1<sup>st</sup> Assistant Chief/Instructor</span></i></b><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> – Alan Baird III</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">2<sup>nd</sup> Assistant Chief/Safety Officer</span></i></b><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> – Gary Spaven</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Trapped firefighters</span></i></b><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> – Victim Bradley Golden andFirefighter #1 Benjamin Morris</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The final <i>Death in the Line of Duty</i> report waspublished on October 31, 2002. In its summary, NIOSH stated that:</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">On September 25, 2001, a 19 year-old male volunteerfirefighter (the victim) died and two male volunteer firefighters (Firefighter#1 and Firefighter #2) were injured during a multi-agency, live-burn trainingsession. The victim and Firefighter #1 were playing the role of firefighterswho had become trapped on the second-level of the structure. The trainingbecame reality when the fire was started and progressed up the stairwell,accelerated by a foam mattress that was ignited on the first floor. Firefighter#1 and the victim were recovered from the second-level front bedroom where theyhad been placed for the training. Firefighter #2 jumped from a second-levelwindow in the rear bedroom. The victim was unresponsive when removed from thestructure. Advanced life-saving procedures were initiated on the victim enroute to the local hospital where he was pronounced dead. Firefighter #1 andFirefighter #2 suffered severe burns and were airlifted to an area burn unit.</span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Introduction.</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> On September 25, 2001, a firefighter (the victim) died andtwo firefighters (Firefighter #1 and Firefighter #2) were injured whileparticipating in a multi-agency, live-burn training session. The victim andFirefighter #1 were playing the role of firefighters who had become trapped ina structure on the second level.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">On September 27, 2001, the United States Fire Administrationnotified the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) ofthis incident. On December 4-5, 2001, two safety and occupational healthspecialists and the section chief from the NIOSH Firefighter FatalityInvestigation and Prevention Program investigated this incident. Interviewswere conducted with the Chief, the Assistant Chiefs, and firefighters of thedepartments from the district involved in the training session. The departmentthat was operating the training was disbanded. Copies of their standardoperating procedures were not available for review. The training records of thevictim and injured firefighters were reviewed.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The fire district involved in this multi-agency trainingsession operated from four volunteer stations and was comprised of 102 activemembers. The district serves a population of approximately 25,000 in ageographic area of about 25 square miles. The victim had been a volunteerfirefighter for just a few weeks and had not received any formalized trainingbefore the incident. Firefighter #1 was reported to have received BasicFirefighting Essentials, Maze Training, and Live Tower Training, but nodocumentation was provided during the investigation. Firefighter #2 wasdocumented to have completed Firefighting Essentials, Pump Operator, Commandingthe Initial Response, Apparatus Operator, and Hazardous Materials FirstResponder Operations. The site was a two-story, side-by-side duplex. Vacant andin disrepair, the duplex was scheduled for demolition in the near future by theowner.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Investigation.</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> At approximately 1845 hours, Firefighter #1, Firefighter#2, the victim, the 1<sup>st</sup> Assistant Chief, and the 2<sup>nd</sup>Assistant Chief were on the scene discussing the plan for a rescue drill duringlive-burn training. The 1<sup>st</sup> Assistant Chief was the instructor. The2<sup>nd</sup> Assistant Chief was a Safety Officer for the west unit of theduplex. Firefighter #2 was a Safety Officer for the east unit and the IgnitionOfficer. The following apparatus were on the scene before the start of thetraining: Engine #451 equipped with a 1,000-gallon water tank, Engine #3equipped with a 1,000-gallon water tank, Heavy Rescue #449, Rescue #1, Truck#459 and a 10,000-gallon water tanker (building owner’s).</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The training scenario was designed to include twofirefighters who had become trapped while conducting a search for an infant ina bedroom located on the second floor of a duplex apartment. <b><i>Note: Thefirefighters that were used to simulate victims during this training sessionwill be referred to as the “trapped firefighters” throughout this report.</i></b>Engine #451 was to hook up to the owner’s water tanker on site and have two1-3/4 hand lines stretched to the structure, one hand line to the rear entranceand one hand line to the front entrance of the east unit. Engine #3 and HeavyRescue #449 were then dispatched to stage approximately &Acirc;&frac34; of a mile away topractice their response to the scene. The scenario included blocking the doorto the stairs of the unit (east unit) leading to the “trapped firefighters” tosimulate that the stairs had collapsed. The responding units would have todeploy a rapid intervention team (RIT), which would then be forced to accessthe second floor via the stairs on the other side of the duplex. Once on thesecond floor, the RIT would breach the wall leading to the other apartment toconduct a search for the “trapped firefighters” and the infant. <b><i>Note: Thewall on the second floor separating the two units had been breached duringearlier training sessions.</i></b> The “trapped firefighters” (Firefighter #1and the victim) were placed in the front bedroom with some debris scatteredabout the floor and a Ping-Pong table placed upon them to simulate a realentrapment. <b><i>Note: This was reportedly the first time the victim had worna self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) in a fire condition. Firefighter #1had approximately 1 year with the department and minimal experience with anSCBA in fire conditions.</i></b> A burn barrel was to be used to produce smokeand simulate fire from the back bedroom of the east duplex.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The 2<sup>nd</sup> Assistant Chief was positioned with a20-pound fire extinguisher on the second floor of the west unit to guide theRIT up the stairs and through the breach in the wall. He was to ensure the RITdid not go through an opening in the back wall of the west unit. Firefighter #2was on the second floor of the east unit where he was to place the “trappedfirefighters” in the front bedroom, light the burn barrel in the back bedroom,and guide the RIT if necessary (Refer to official report for Diagram #1). TheChief arrived on the scene and did a walkthrough of the upstairs to ensuresafety and to make sure no accelerants were used in the burn barrel. He thenproceeded to the front of the duplex and took over outside command as requestedby the 1<sup>st</sup> Assistant Chief, who had interior command from the firstfloor of the burn unit (Refer to official report for Diagram #2).</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Firefighter #2 struck a flare and lit the burn barrel on thesecond floor and radioed to the Chief at approximately 1855 hours that it waslit. He then positioned himself in the hallway to guide the RIT if necessary.The barrel was not producing smoke, so Firefighter #2 went to the back bedroomto assist in the process. During this time, the 1<sup>st</sup> Assistant Chiefstruck another flare on the first floor and lit the foam mattress of a sleepersofa that was extended adjacent to the open side of the stairs.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Firefighter #2 heard the second flare being struck and wentto investigate. In a matter of seconds, the flames began to roll across theceiling, up the stairs, and out the front windows of the burn unit, producingwhat was described as a thick, “steamy” smoke. The 2<sup>nd</sup> AssistantChief was cut off from the east unit by the fire extending up the stairwell. Heexited via a ladder through an opening in the back wall of the west unit. The 1<sup>st</sup>Assistant Chief went out the back of the structure to locate a hand line.Unable to locate a hand line in the back of the structure, he searched for ahand line at the front of the structure. <b><i>Note: No hand lines had beenstretched from Engine #451 before the start of the training evolution.</i></b>Flames were now extending out of the first-floor bay window into the frontbedroom. He then pulled 200 feet of 1-3/4 inch preconnect off Engine #451 andadvanced the line to the rear of the structure.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Firefighter #2 went to retrieve the “trapped firefighters”from the front bedroom where flames were already coming through the windowsfrom downstairs. Firefighter #2 grabbed the two “trapped firefighters” and ledthem to the stairwell, which was fully engulfed. Firefighter #2 lost his firegloves in the process, exposing the leather gloves he had worn underneath. Theleather gloves immediately burned and adhered to his skin. He and the “trappedfirefighters” became separated. Firefighter #2 made it to the back bedroomwhere the burn barrel was located. Conditions in the back bedroom wereextremely smoky with little heat. Firefighter #2 frantically searched for thewindow that had been boarded shut to aid in the smoke conditions. He was ableto pry the window open with his hands, and he jumped from the second floor justas the 1<sup>st</sup> Assistant Chief arrived with the hand line.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The two staged engines proceeded to the scene under normaldriving conditions as planned for the training operations.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Once on the scene, they were immediately informed that thiswas no longer a drill, that two firefighters were down on the second floor, andthat one firefighter had jumped from the second-story window. Due to thecircumstances, both engines deployed a RIT team. The first RIT made forcibleentry through the front door of the east unit and proceeded up the stairs tothe front bedroom. They immediately found Firefighter #1 and dragged him downthe stairs by his turnout gear to the lawn in front of the duplex. The secondRIT proceeded to the front bedroom and found the victim. They dragged thevictim to the front of the duplex for immediate assistance. <b><i>Note: Boththe victim and Firefighter #1 were found wearing their face pieces. Burninjuries to the faces of both firefighters indicated that their masks had beenremoved during the fire’s progression.</i></b> The victim was unresponsive whenremoved from the structure. Advanced life-saving procedures were initiated onthe victim en route to the local hospital where he was pronounced dead. Firefighter#1 and Firefighter #2 suffered severe burns and were airlifted to an area burnunit.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Cause of Death. </span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The cause of death was listed as asphyxia due to smokeinhalation.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Recommendations and Discussion.</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> The following recommendations anddiscussions of them are:</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .75in; mso-list: l2 level1 lfo7; tab-stops: list .75in; text-indent: -.25in;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-fareast-font-family: Arial;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">1)<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span></b><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Fire departments should ensure that no one plays the role ofvictim inside the structure during live-burn training.</span></i></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> The National Fire ProtectionAssociation Standard 1403, 2-4.13, notes that individuals shall not play therole of a victim inside the building. Rescue operations should be conducted byusing mannequins instead of firefighters, just as the mock baby was used tosimulate the infant.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .75in; mso-list: l2 level1 lfo7; tab-stops: list .75in; text-indent: -.25in;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-fareast-font-family: Arial;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">2)<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span></b><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Fire departments should ensure that a certified instructoris in charge of the live-burn training and that a separate safety officer isappointed and has the authority to intervene and control any aspect of theoperation.</span></i></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> Firedepartments should comply with the National Fire Protection AssociationStandard 1403, which notes that all instructors shall be deemed qualified todeliver fire-fighter training by the authority having jurisdiction. Theinstructor-in-charge should be a certified instructor who oversees all aspectsof the training session.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .75in; tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Their responsibilities includeplanning and coordinating all training activities, monitoring activities,structure inspections, briefing and assigning instructors and supportpersonnel, and ensuring adherence to the directives. The authority havingjurisdiction in this area does not have any requirements or procedures in placefor determining if an instructor is qualified to provide firefighter trainingas outlined in NFPA 1041, <i>Standard for Fire Service Instructor ProfessionalQualifications.</i> NFPA Standard 1403 further states that safety officersshall be appointed for all training sessions and have no other duties tointerfere with their safety responsibilities for all persons on the scene. Thesafety officer should eliminate unsafe conditions, prevent unsafe acts,coordinate lighting of fires with instructor-in-charge, ensure personalprotective equipment compliance, ensure all participants are accounted forbefore and after each evolution. The safety officers during this incident alsohad the responsibility of the ignition officer in the presence of and under thedirect supervision of the safety officer.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .75in; mso-list: l2 level1 lfo7; tab-stops: list .75in; text-indent: -.25in;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-fareast-font-family: Arial;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">3)<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span></b><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Fire departments should ensure that only one training fireis ignited at a time by a designated ignition officer and that a charged hoseline is present while igniting the fire.</span></i></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> One person, who is not participating in thetraining, should be assigned the duty of ignition officer and light the fire asinstructed by the instructor-in-charge. The safety officer should be in thepresence of, and have direct supervision over, the ignition officer when thefire is lit. A charged hose line should be present when igniting the fire.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .75in; mso-list: l2 level1 lfo7; tab-stops: list .75in; text-indent: -.25in;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-fareast-font-family: Arial;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">4)<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span></b><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Fire departments should ensure that Standard OperatingProcedures (SOPs) are developed and followed.</span></i></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> Standard operating procedures(SOPs) should be developed addressing emergency-scene operations such asTraining Fires, RIT Operations, SCBA, Water Supply, and Hose line Operations.These SOPs will then form the foundation as to how the training will beconducted. The SOP should be in written form and included in the overallrisk-management plan for the fire department. If these procedures are changed,appropriate training should be provided to all affected members.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .75in; mso-list: l2 level1 lfo7; tab-stops: list .75in; text-indent: -.25in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-fareast-font-family: Arial;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">5)<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span></b><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Fire departments should ensure that all firefightersparticipating in live-burn training have achieved a minimum level of basictraining.</span></i></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> Toensure safety during live-burn training, all firefighters should have a minimumlevel of basic training. As stated in NFPA 1403, 2-1.2, the firefighter studentshall have received training to meet the performance objectives for Firefighter1 of the following sections of NFPA 1001, <i>Standard for FirefighterProfessional Qualifications:</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; tab-stops: .5in; text-indent: .25in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Section 3-3 Safety</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; tab-stops: .5in; text-indent: .25in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Section 3-5 Fire Behavior</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; tab-stops: .5in; text-indent: .25in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Section 3-6 Portable Extinguishers</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; tab-stops: .5in; text-indent: .25in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Section 3-7 Personal ProtectiveEquipment</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; tab-stops: .5in; text-indent: .25in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Section 3-11 Ladders</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; tab-stops: .5in; text-indent: .25in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Section 3-12 Fire Hose, Appliancesand Streams</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; tab-stops: .5in; text-indent: .25in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Section 3-16 Overhaul</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; tab-stops: .5in; text-indent: .25in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Section 3-19 Water Supply</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .75in; mso-list: l2 level1 lfo7; tab-stops: list .75in; text-indent: -.25in;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-fareast-font-family: Arial;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">6)<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span></b><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Fire departments should ensure that before conductinglive-burn training, a pre-burn briefing session is conducted and an evacuationplan and signal are established for all participants.</span></i></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> All participants should attend apre-burn briefing before conducting the live-burn training session to discussall facets of the training. The instructor in charge of the training shouldpresent the briefing session using the pre-burn plan to detail all aspects ofthe operation. The characteristics of the training area and structure should beaddressed to include such items as crew assignments and the designation andlayout of ingress/egress routes in the event of emergency. An evacuation planshould be established and an audible evacuation signal be demonstrated to allparticipants in an interior live-burn training evolution. It is imperative thatall participants are familiar with the layout of the structure. Allparticipants should conduct a walk-through of the structure before any trainingevolutions are initiated.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .75in; mso-list: l2 level1 lfo7; tab-stops: list .75in; text-indent: -.25in;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-fareast-font-family: Arial;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">7)<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span></b><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Fire departments should ensure that fires used for live-burntraining are not located in any designated exit paths.</span></i></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> During a training exercise, everyeffort must be made to ensure the exit paths are free from obstructions. Toprovide a protected area of travel, fires should not be located in any exitpaths. These areas should be closely monitored to ensure that fire does notspread during the training exercise. The sofa bed was located at the bottom ofthe stairs leading to the front exit. The front exit was blocked to simulatethat the stairs had collapsed for the responding RIT. Once the sofa bed waslit, the fire immediately traveled into the exit path using the stairway as a <i>chimney</i>.To enhance the smoke conditions for the evolution, the windows on both floorswere boarded over or partially covered to minimize ventilation. When the fireentered the exit path, the training exercise became a working structure fire.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .75in; mso-list: l2 level1 lfo7; tab-stops: list .75in; text-indent: -.25in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-fareast-font-family: Arial;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">8)<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span></b><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Fire departments should ensure that the fuels used in thelive-burn training have known burning characteristics and the structure isinspected for possible environmental hazards.</span></i></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> Fuels for training fires shouldhave known burning characteristics, and the quantities used should be the minimumnecessary that are controllable and able to create the desired fire conditions.The structure should be inspected to identify and remove materials that couldcontribute to rapidly spreading fires and create an environmental or healthhazard. The structure must also be inspected to provide for physical safety ofthe participants in the training. NFPA 1403, 2-2.10, identifies the followingitems that should be addressed:</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 1.0in; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; tab-stops: list 1.0in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-bidi-font-weight: bold; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Floors,railings, and stairs shall be made safe.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 1.0in; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; tab-stops: list 1.0in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-bidi-font-weight: bold; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Specialattention shall be given to potential chimney hazards.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 1.0in; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; tab-stops: list 1.0in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-bidi-font-weight: bold; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Allwalls and ceilings shall be intact or patched.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 1.0in; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; tab-stops: list 1.0in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-bidi-font-weight: bold; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Debriscreating or contributing to unsafe conditions shall be removed.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 1.0in; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; tab-stops: list 1.0in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-bidi-font-weight: bold; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Low-densitycombustible fiberboard and unconventional interior finishes shall be removed.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 1.0in; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; tab-stops: list 1.0in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-bidi-font-weight: bold; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Extraordinaryweight above the training area shall be removed, or the area below it shall berendered inaccessible.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 1.0in; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; tab-stops: list 1.0in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-bidi-font-weight: bold; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Anadequate ventilation opening(s) shall be made in the roof.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 1.0in; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; tab-stops: list 1.0in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-bidi-font-weight: bold; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Utilitiesshall be disconnected.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 1.0in; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; tab-stops: list 1.0in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-bidi-font-weight: bold; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Considerationshall be given to potential hazards of toxic weeds, insect hives, and vermin.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 1.0in; mso-list: l1 level1 lfo1; tab-stops: list 1.0in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Allforms of asbestos shall be removed by an approved asbestos removal contractor.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Additionally,</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .75in; mso-list: l2 level1 lfo7; tab-stops: list .75in; text-indent: -.25in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-style: italic; mso-fareast-font-family: Arial;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">9)<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span></b><b><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">States should develop a permitting procedure for live-burntraining to be conducted at acquired structures. States should ensure that allrequirements of NFPA 1403 have been met before issuing the permit.</span></i></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Discussion: NFPA 1403, <i>Standard on Live Fire TrainingEvolutions,</i> is the guideline for conducting live-burn training evolutionsat approved training centers, and in this case, acquired structures. Approvedtraining centers have burn buildings that are specifically designed forrepeated live-burn training evolutions. The structures that are acquired forlive-burn training are usually in disrepair and were never designed for live-burntraining. Any building that is acquired for live-burn training must go throughan inspection process to identify and eliminate any hazards, or potentialhazards that may be present to the participants, the public, and theenvironment. An application for permit procedure that is overseen by the statethrough local officials or a State representative would help ensure safety. Iftraining facilities with approved burn buildings are available, then live-burntraining exercises should not be conducted in acquired structures.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Investigator Information. </span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">This incident was investigated by Jay Tarley and TomMezzanotte, Safety and Occupational Health Specialists, and Robert Koedam,Section Chief, Trauma Investigations Section, Surveillance and FieldInvestigations Branch, Division of Safety Research, NIOSH.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="text-decoration: none;"><br /></span></span></u></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Discussion/Questions About the NIOSH Report</span></u></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="text-decoration: none;"><br /></span></span></u></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Nodepartmental SOPS were “available” at the time of the investigation, but yet,the report recommended “developing and implementing” SOPs. Is that to mean thatWestmoreland Fire District didn’t have any SOPS or that they had them, but theyweren’t “available”?</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">BradleyGolden had no documented training of any kind, but participated in a structuralfire training exercise and donned an SCBA.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">BenjaminMorris had Basic Essentials, Maze Training, Live-Tower Training, but nodocumentation to support the claim.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">AdamCroman had Essentials, Pump Operator, Command-Initial Response, ApparatusOperator and HAZMAT-First Responder. On September 25, 2001, he served as “RITconsultant”, second floor safety officer and ignition officer.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Reportsays that all were discussing the rescue drill. <b>See trial testimony.</b></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Reportstated that Westmoreland Fire Chief James Kimball took over outside command atthe request of Baird. <b>See trial testimony.</b></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Reportstates that, while Adam Croman went to the second floor burn barrel, Bairdstruck a flare on the mattress of sleeper sofa. <b>See trial testimony.</b></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Reportstates that the three (Croman, Morris and Golden) were together at the top ofthe stairs. How did they become separated? Why wouldn’t two inexperiencedfirefighters follow their safety officer, Adam Croman to the burn barrel room?As it were, both Morris and Golden were found in the bedroom where they hadbeen placed originally. Croman had a radio, but there are no records of radiocommunication.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Reportstates that engines from Westmoreland and Lowell were staged &Acirc;&frac34; of a mile awayand proceeded as per the training exercise. How could they get to the scenewithout knowing that the training exercise was now a working, structural firewith people trapped? Where was the radio communication? As soon as Gary Spavenexited the burning structure and informed Chief Kimball that there were stillthree firefighters inside, why didn’t Kimball radio a “mayday” to theresponding units to hasten their response? Did Kimball radio for ambulancesonce it was apparent that there were injuries?</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Reportstates that both victims had burns on their faces consistent with having theirmasks off during fire’s progression, but both were found with their masks inplace.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Reportstates that a doll was used to simulate a baby, but used live victims for the“trapped firefighters”.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Therewas little discussion in the report about the condition of the SCBAs, otherthan they were found to be in working condition, but yet, Brad Golden’s SCBAwas found to contain 1700 pounds of air still in it, but Ben Morris’s wasempty. What position was Golden’s tank valve in?</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l0 level1 lfo2; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Whywere there no timelines? It would seem that minutes would be critical and yet,there was no re-creation of events to a timeline.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Though it would not be contained in the NIOSH Report, a bigquestion in my mind is: who recovered Brad Golden from the upstairs bedroom?Waylan Wilczek stated at trial that he rescued Ben Morris, but no one mentionsthe recovery of Brad Golden.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Lack of experience on the participants’ parts was discussed,but I don’t think a discussion would be complete without discussing along withinexperience, the relative young age of the key individuals.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Bradley Golden</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> was a 2001 graduate of Clinton High Schooland had been a member of the Lairdsville Fire Department for just three weeksprior to the fatal incident. I found no record of participation in anexplorer/cadet program in Brad’s past; just a desire to join a fire department.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">At the time of the fatal incident, Brad Golden was 19 yearsold. When you factor that in with: (1) member of the fire department for threeweeks; (2) no formal training of any kind; (3) no medical documentation forfitness to wear full turnout with an SCBA; (4) no previous experience in fireconditions; (5) no previous experience in use, maintenance or trouble-shootingan SCBA; and (6) no instructions on what to do in the case of an emergency, theoutcome was entirely predictable and preventable.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Benjamin Morris</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> was also 19 years old and had been a member of theLairdsville Fire Department for about one year. At the time of theinvestigation, the fire department alluded to some training that Ben had taken,but no documentation existed, according to NIOSH investigators.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Gary Spaven</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> was Second Assistant Chief of the Lairdsville FireDepartment. He was 19 years old at the time of the incident. I was unable tofind any information on his training, but I have many concerns about a “19year-old” holding the rank of assistant chief on ANY fire department. At thatage, his social skills aren’t developed. I can’t believe that his reasoningabilities would be all that sharp. At 19, there would be little, if any, “beenthere/done that” conversation. His job experience appears to belackingâ€&brvbar;considerably. Coupled with a very thin resume’ and I wonder aloud if heshould have held this rank.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Adam Croman</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> was the “old man” of the three upstairs at the time of theincident. He was 21 years old! That would give him 3 years experience if hejoined at 18 and would give him more experience than Brad Golden, Ben Morrisand Gary Spaven <b><i>combined</i></b>!</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">At the time of the investigation, his training records wereavailable for review. Unfortunately, according to those records, he was notqualified to be serving in the capacities assigned to him on September 25,2001. He had no documented training in rapid intervention, safety or asignition officer for live-burn training. Especially disturbing is the lack ofcommon sense that goes beyond the lack of training and experience. As theperson responsible for the safety of the other two, he failed miserably. Throwin the fact that he was also “senior” to Brad and Ben and you can understandwhy I am so opposed to young, inexperienced firefighters holding ranks orpositions that could greatly impact another’s safety.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I am convinced that a more highly trained, more experiencedand more mature firefighter would have gotten everyone out alive. Hell, the guyI just described wouldn’t have gotten them IN that situation to begin with!</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">If Adam Croman threw down the mattress as he says he did,then why? <b><i>His</i></b> fire was already lit. The second fire was not safeand especially near a stairway. A <i>QUALIFIED</i> safety officer would haveknown that.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">If Adam Croman heard the flare struck downstairs, as heclaims he did, then why didn’t he grab Brad and Ben and take them out of thehouse right then and there?</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">If Adam Croman was 21 years old, RIT consultant, safety andignition officer, then why didn’t he get Brad and Ben out of that house?Because he was just as scared as Brad and Ben were. He admits that they allpanicked, but I would bet big money that HE was the source of their panic.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The guy that is supposed to be in charge of you is screamingand is out of his mind. Mr. Big Shot was overwhelmed with a series of eventsthat he wasn’t prepared and qualified to deal with. He abandoned, left,deserted and totally disregarded his two fellow brothers to save his own sorryass. He can still hear the <i>screams</i>? GOOD! Because Brad can’t hear themanymore. And Ben Morris is quite the gentleman, considering that he was left todie along with Brad.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Adam Croman told his father and a courtroom about his heroicefforts to shepherd Brad and Ben to the stairway. Ben’s courtroom testimonydisagrees with Adam’s version and we will never know Brad’s version. But I’mnot buying Croman’s version. The rest of you can decide for yourselves.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Alan Baird III</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> was 30 years old at the time and First Assistant Chief ofthe Lairdsville Fire Department. He was a 12-year “veteran”, but his trainingrecords revealed basic training courses and certainly did not give rise to thenotion that he had a strong academic background in firefighter trainingevolutions. It appears that he also joined at age 18.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Does anyone else see a pattern? I get the idea thatLairdsville wants the young, restless type. One who is willing to take chancesinstead of training. One who believes that getting hurt is a badge of honor.One who is “living the dream”, but is unwilling to put in the time. I rememberChristine Golden describing a picnic that she went to and was struck by howyoung the firefighters were and also lamented about their safety.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Lairdsville had been lucky for some time. Theirinexperience, lack of training, ignorance and arrogance finally caught up withthem on September 25, 2001. Tragically, it was Brad Golden who paid theultimate price.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="text-decoration: none;"><br /></span></span></u></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Key Players in the Lairdsville Incident</span></u></b><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"></span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Bradley Golden, Lairdsville Firefighter</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Benjamin Morris, Lairdsville Firefighter</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Adam Croman, Lairdsville Firefighter</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Alan Baird III, Lairdsville First Assistant Chief</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Gary Spaven, Lairdsville Second Assistant Chief</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Lance Croman, Lairdsville Fire Chief</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Shane Smith, Lairdsville Firefighter</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">James Kimball, Westmoreland Fire Chief</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Waylan Wilczek, Westmoreland Firefighter</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Robert Walsh, Westmoreland Fire District Safety and HealthOfficer</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Kathryn Wenham, Lowell Firefighter/EMT, sister to JamesKimball</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">George Dorn, LowellFire Chief</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Dave Ruppert, state Department of Labor Public EmployeeSafety and Health (PESH) Bureau</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Michael A. Arcuri, District Attorney</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Michael Coluzza, First Assistant District Attorney</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Robert Moran, Defense Attorney for Alan Baird III</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Michael L. Dwyer, Presiding Judge at trial</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Carol Roberts, Mother of Bradley Golden</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Bob Roberts, Step-father of Bradley Golden</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Michael L. Golden, Sr., Father of Bradley Golden</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Michael Golden, Jr., Brother of Bradley Golden</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Greg Golden, Cousin of Bradley Golden</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Christine Golden, Sister-in-law to Bradley Golden and wifeof Michael Golden, Jr.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Dana Spaven, Sister of Gary Spaven</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Oneida County Sheriff’s Department</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">New York</span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> State</span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> Office of Fire Prevention andControl</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Friends Remember Bradley</span></u></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Schoolmates and classmates were present at Clinton High Schoolwhen a flag was raised in Brad’s memory at the football field. His wake wasfilled with students and teachers alike.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Kristina Bramley remembers when her and Brad were toddlersand Brad’s mother would baby-sit her. She talked about the memorial service andhow basically, the whole school turned out. <i>I couldn’t think of anythingelse for at least a month</i>, she said.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Jewell, Kristina Bramley and Jamey Jenny talked about theirfriend. They recall how he enjoyed just <i>hanging out</i> and driving hisSaturn car, which he named the <i>Red Rocket</i>. They described how he alwayshad to have his hair perfect. <i>He had it gelled so that it was always hard, </i>Jewellrecalls with a laugh. <i>One night a friend messed it up and he got mad. Butthen he laughed and said ‘you’re the only one who can mess with the hair.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Brad’s appearance was important to him. In his younger days,he would wear a hat and wore thick glasses until he got contact lenses. When hegot older, he discovered that Gio cologne would become his favorite cologne.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">More than most guys, he really cared what he looked like,</span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> according to Kristina Bramley. </span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">He especially liked cruising around town in his Saturn,according to Jamey Jenny, who considered himself more of a brother to Brad thana close friend.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">We’d go to the Carousel Mall, anywhere. He didn’t like sittingat home, being bored. He wanted to be active, </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">said his best friend<i>.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Bradley went to Georgiaafter his graduation to be with his sister, but missed his friends and returnedto Clinton. Itwas then that he decided to join the fire department.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">On September 25<sup>th</sup>, Brad was invited to join hisfriends for a night out, but Brad had a fire department training exercise thathe didn’t want to miss. </span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">It would be the last time that Jamey would get to talk tohim.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">September 25, 2001-In Their Own Words</span></u></b><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"></span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">-Purpose of the training-</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .25in; tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l3 level1 lfo3; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">StateLabor Department report stated that <i>the plan that night was for a fire to beset under controlled conditions and as part of the exercise, two individualswere to be pulled from an upstairs bedroom, giving firefighters rescue experienceand smoky conditions</i>.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l3 level1 lfo3; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">AlanBaird III stated, <i>Lairdsville would show up like we had a house fire and doa search like we had a mock victim in the house. Then Lairdsville would havefirefighters trapped inside, and Westmoreland and Lowell would come in toextinguish the fire on the first floor and do a search for one or twofirefighters inside who were simulating being trapped inside by a collapsedroof.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l3 level1 lfo3; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">WaylanWilczek testified at trial that <i>the exercise was to be a rescue of livevictims.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l3 level1 lfo3; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">KathrynWenham stated that they were told that the purpose of the exercise was to <i>rescuetwo victims.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l3 level1 lfo3; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">LanceCroman stated that plans called for a <i>rapid intervention team exercise.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l3 level1 lfo3; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">JamesKimball said that <i>it was suppose to be a smoke drill.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l3 level1 lfo3; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">BenjaminMorris said that it was supposed to be a <i>routine interior fire attackexercise.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">-Who was in charge of the training-</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 40.3pt; mso-list: l4 level1 lfo4; tab-stops: list 40.3pt; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">AlanBaird III identified Westmoreland Fire Chief James Kimball as <i>incidentcommander that night. He’s overall in charge of the whole scene.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 40.3pt; mso-list: l4 level1 lfo4; tab-stops: list 40.3pt; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Astate report concluded both Baird and Gary Spaven were in charge of theexercise.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 40.3pt; mso-list: l4 level1 lfo4; tab-stops: list 40.3pt; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">RobertMoran, Baird’s Defense Attorney, stated that James Kimball was in charge.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 40.3pt; mso-list: l4 level1 lfo4; tab-stops: list 40.3pt; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">JamesKimball stated at trial that <i>Al Baird was calling the shots when I got tothe scene and he told me everything was set up.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 40.3pt; mso-list: l4 level1 lfo4; tab-stops: list 40.3pt; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">JamesKimball gave a statement to an Oneida County Sheriff’s Deputy after theincident that Lance Croman was the officer in charge at the scene.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 40.3pt; mso-list: l4 level1 lfo4; tab-stops: list 40.3pt; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">LanceCroman testified at trial that Baird was in charge at the scene.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 40.3pt; mso-list: l4 level1 lfo4; tab-stops: list 40.3pt; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">BenjaminMorris stated at trial that <i>As far as I knew, it was Lairdsville’s practice.The highest-ranking officer was in charge,</i> referring to Baird.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: 40.3pt; mso-list: l4 level1 lfo4; tab-stops: list 40.3pt; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">GeorgeDorn, LowellFire Chief testified at trial that in a training exercise, the highest-rankingofficial of the department conducting the drill would be in charge.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">-How many fires were set and where-</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l5 level1 lfo5; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">AlanBaird III stated that there was only supposed to be a fire set in a queen sizesofa bed couch on the first floor.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l5 level1 lfo5; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">GarySpaven stated that two fires were planned for that night.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l5 level1 lfo5; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">RobertMoran stated at trial that he believed that Adam Croman set two fires upstairsand then threw a mattress down to Baird on the first floor for a third fire.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l5 level1 lfo5; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">KathrynWenham stated <i>we were told that there would be a burn barrel with live firein it.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l5 level1 lfo5; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">LanceCroman testified at trial that <i>I assumed it would only be the burn barrel.It was only suppose to be smoke.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l5 level1 lfo5; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">AdamCroman stated at trial that he was told a burn barrel was to be used in the <i>smokeonly exercise.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l5 level1 lfo5; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">JamesKimball stated at trial <i>All I knew is it was supposed to be a smoke drill atthat time and supposedly a burn barrel.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l5 level1 lfo5; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Lairdsvillefirefighter Shane Smith testified at trial that he heard Baird tell anotherfirefighter that he planned to ignite a fire in the sofa to make the heat more <i>intense.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l5 level1 lfo5; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">BenjaminMorris testified at trial that <i>Lance told us it was going to be a smokeexercise in a smoke barrel.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">-Who set the fires-</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l6 level1 lfo6; tab-stops: list .5in; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">BenjaminMorris stated that <i>Adam lit the barrel.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l6 level1 lfo6; tab-stops: list .5in; text-align: justify; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">GarySpaven stated that <i>Croman lit the first fire in the barrel upstairs.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l6 level1 lfo6; tab-stops: list .5in; text-align: justify; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">GarySpaven stated that after Croman lit the barrel, <i>about 30 seconds later,Baird lit the couch.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l6 level1 lfo6; tab-stops: list .5in; text-align: justify; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Statereport states that <i>Spaven lit the fatal fire</i> based on statements givento them by Robert Walsh. Walsh denies it.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l6 level1 lfo6; tab-stops: list .5in; text-align: justify; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">RobertMoran stated at trial that <i>Croman, I believe, set both fires.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l6 level1 lfo6; tab-stops: list .5in; text-align: justify; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">AlanBaird III said that he ignited the couch and mattress pad with a road flare.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l6 level1 lfo6; tab-stops: list .5in; text-align: justify; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">DanaSpaven said that Baird used a flare to light the living room sofa.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">-What happened upstairs as the firegrew-</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Gary Spaven</span></u></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">As the house filled with smoke,Spaven found himself trapped upstairs. He called for a ladder. He went to theside of the building and told Kimball there were still three others inside.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="text-decoration: none;"><br /></span></span></u></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Adam Croman</span></u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Croman stated at trial he tookMorris and Golden to a second-floor window, but flames and thick black smokefrom the first floor fire <i>were licking up at us. We got to the hall area andsort of just nudged each other to try to get downstairs.</i> As the threefirefighters tried to crawl backward down a burning staircase to escape theinferno surrounding them, Croman realized he couldn’t make it down that wayalive. Moments later, Croman testified he lost contact with Morris and Golden.Croman states <i>You go from human to survival mode. You can’t explain it. Wewere all just panicking. We didn’t know what to do. It got intense. I justbolted out. We were yelling at each other. To this day, I can still hearscreaming. It was mind-boggling.</i> Croman found the burn barrel room andcrawled until he felt cardboard over a window. <i>I made a decision. I had toget out. My hands were tingling. I put my hands out, my arms and I justdropped.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="text-decoration: none;"><br /></span></span></u></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Benjamin Morris</span></u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Ben Morris stated at trial thatafter donning full protective gear and being positioned on the floor next toGolden by Adam Croman in the upstairs bedroom, he and Golden waited. Cromanreturned in about five minutes. Morris stated <i>He came back to the room,stood in the doorway and said ‘come on guys, we got to go, let’s go’. You couldsee the place filling with smoke,</i> said Morris. As the firefighters tried toescape, they quickly lost contact with each other. <i>I never made it to myfeet. The room filled with smoke. I was confused. I didn’t know what was goingon.</i> Morris said he panicked and became disoriented. Extreme heat preventedhim from making it to the blazing stairway. He felt along the walls for one ofthe boarded up windows in the bedroom. Then he heard the bell on his air tankstart to ring. The tank was running out of breathing air.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Morris lost consciousness. He nextremembers <i>waking up in grass in the front yard</i> after being taken out ofthe house.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="text-decoration: none;"><br /></span></span></u></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">James Ryan, state fire investigator</span></u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Firefighters trapped upstairs in theold farmhouse would have had a difficult time escaping down the staircase. Therisk would be extreme. The temperatures in this area would be greater than the(capacity) of the protective equipment. The heat would be unbearable. As thefire rapidly burned out of control, a flashover, stoked by heated gasesoccurred in the stairwell area, creating temperatures of about 1500 degrees insome ceiling areas and between 250 and 300 degrees on the floor.</span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="text-decoration: none;"><br /></span></span></u></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">-Rescue and Recovery-</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Once the participating units fromWestmoreland and Lowell arrived at the scene, they realized that the drill wasno longer a drill, but a working, structure fire. Waylan Wilczek was first intothe house with a hose and quickly made his way up the back stairway to rooms onthe second floor, where visibility was zero. An air pack alarm alerted Wilczekthat a firefighter was nearby. His flashlight beam found a reflective strip onturnout gear. Wilczek was able to remove an unconscious and badly burned BenMorris from the house. Golden went undiscovered. According to Wilczek, <i>Nobodysaid how many victims were down.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">As Croman and Morris were beingtreated for injuries, Brad Golden was brought outside. Kathryn Wenham, a LowellFire Department firefighter/EMT stated that Bradley’s face was gray and blackwith soot and that he had no pulse. CPR and efforts to intubate him had littleeffect.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Golden was rushed to St. ElizabethMedical Center. He was pronounced dead at approximately 8:00 p.m.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Carol Roberts, mother of Bradley,didn’t find out until several hours later that there had been an accident andthat her son had been injured. It was at St. Elizabeth Medical Center where shewas told that Bradley had died. She remembers that he had burns all over hisface.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">As word spread that Bradley had beentaken to the hospital, friends planned to go there to joke with him. Oncethere, they were taken to a waiting room where others, including Brad’s family,were waiting. A doctor came out and told them, <b><i>Brad didn’t make it.</i></b></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Dr. Michael Sikirica describes themechanism of death: <i>Golden died of asphyxia after inhaling heated gases thatdamaged his windpipe. The mechanism would be respiratory failure and theinability to breathe. It would be painful. Burns on Golden’s face showed hepulled the protective mask off his face as he was overcome by heat and smokeupstairs.</i></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">-In the aftermath-</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">As a result of the tragic events ofSeptember 25, 2001, Lairdsville First Assistant Chief Alan Baird III wasindicted in February 2002 for second-degree manslaughter in the death ofBradley Golden and second-degree assault for the injuries to Benjamin Morrisand Adam Croman. Maximum sentence for the manslaughter charge is five tofifteen years in state prison. A plea offer by the district attorney’s officein March 2002 was made to Baird for a lesser charge of criminally negligenthomicide, six months in jail, speaking to fire departments about “mistakesmade” and five years probation. It was rejected by Baird.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">At trial on May 13, 2002, thedistrict attorney was granted an amended charge to include the option ofcriminally negligent homicide, a charge that carries a maximum sentence of fouryears in prison, but would also allow for probation.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">On May 22, 2002, Alan Baird III wasfound guilty of criminally negligent homicide.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">On July 8, 2002, Baird was sentencedto 75 days in jail and five years probation with the stipulation that Bairdhave no involvement with any fire departments. Baird was granted a 120-day stayof his sentence with a written appeal, due by November 18, 2002.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">On November 18, 2002, a request formore time was filed for Baird.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">An appeal was granted and will beheard by the New York Appellate Court on September 17, 2003. Baird remains freeon bail.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">On December 23, 2002, a lawsuit wasfiled by Carol D. Roberts and Michael L. Golden, parents of deceasedLairdsville firefighter Bradley Golden. Also filing suit were Benjamin Morrisand Adam Croman, who were seriously injured during the September 25, 2001incident.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Defendants in the lawsuit are: Oneida County,Westmoreland Fire District, which includes Westmoreland, Lowell and Lairdsvillefire departments, Alan Baird III, the chiefs of all three fire departments atthe time of the incident, the fire commissioners at the time of the incidentand the property owner where the incident occurred.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">After the trial had concluded, thefamilies of Bradley Golden vowed to fight for legislation to prevent this typeof incident from ever happening again. Due to their efforts, “Bradley’s Law”was signed into law on July 17, 2003 by New York Governor George Pataki. Thebill bars the use of “live” victims in fire training exercises. Violations area felony crime.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">A Message from Christine Golden</span></u></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Hello, everyone! Well, today was anexciting day in Utica, NY. Governor Pataki signed ‘Bradley’s Law’into law at approximately 3:30 pm this afternoon (July 17, 2003). There wereover 10 family members there, including Brad’s niece, 3-month old Olivia. Itwas a very proud moment for our family.</span></i></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The new law that makes it a felonyto use live people to play victims in training fires goes into effectimmediately.</span></i></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The Golden family could never hadachieved this without your help.</span></i></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">In the family speech said during theceremony, we thanked the ‘firefighters from around the nation’ for theirsupport of the new law.</span></i></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Our family sends its sincerestgratitude to all of you, for the support, prayers and kind words these past twoyears.</span></i></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">This law finally allows us someclosure, so we know that Brad’s death was not in vain. We also know that ifLittle Olivia says she wants to be a firewoman when she grows up, we know shewill be safe in her training and we will be proud that she picked such a fineprofession.</span></i></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Take care you guys and gals!</span></i></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">And Bless you! Stay safe!</span></i></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Sincerely,</span></i></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Christine Golden</span></i></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Key Provisions of<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span><i>Bradley’s Law</i>:</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l7 level1 lfo8; tab-stops: list .5in; text-align: justify; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Makesit illegal for people to pose as victims during live-burn firefighting trainingexercises.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="margin-left: .5in; mso-list: l7 level1 lfo8; tab-stops: list .5in; text-align: justify; text-indent: -.25in;"><span style="font-family: Symbol; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-family: Symbol; mso-fareast-font-family: Symbol;"><span style="mso-list: Ignore;">&Acirc;&middot;<span style="font: 7.0pt &quot;Times New Roman&quot;;">&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</span></span></span><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Violatorsface a civil penalty of up to $1,000.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><b><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="text-decoration: none;"><br /></span></span></u></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><b><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Quotes and Notes</span></u></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><b><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="text-decoration: none;"><br /></span></span></u></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I have included quotes and notestaken from interviews, court room testimony, firefighter websites and newsstories to give readers an opportunity to better understand the emotions andunderpinning issues for those who were close to the tragedy and those who weredirectly involved in the tragic incident. Though I have read the information onthe Lairdsville incident many times, I am still struck by what was said by someof the key figures in this case. It tugs at my emotions and in some cases,angers me. </span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The interior structural firefighterswho were in the live control burn were not trained in the basic essentials asrequired, had not received medical physicals, were never given training forrespirators and never fit-tested for SCBA. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Taken from the <u>state Department of Labor’s PESHBureau Report</u></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="text-decoration: none;"><br /></span></span></u></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">As a concept, the entire exercisewas greatly flawed and put human life at risk.</span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> First Assistant District AttorneyMichael Coluzza</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I thought about it, but the windowswere awful small. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">AlanBaird III, when asked about the use of ladders for emergency escapes.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I did not anticipate that wall tocatch fire that soon. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Alan Baird III to investigators.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">He told me he pushed them toward thestairs and he jumped out the window with a full pack on. For some reason wedon’t know, the other two didn’t make it out. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Lairdsville Fire Chief Lance Cromanof the conversation that he had with his son, Adam Croman moments after theincident.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I never made it to my feet. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Benjamin Morris of when Adam Cromancame back to the room to tell him and Brad that they had to get out of thehouse.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Pretty much for the realism. Ourtown doesn’t have training dummies to use. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Alan Baird III when asked why live victims were usedfor the training exercise.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">To my knowledge, I’m not aware ofany training that is required to be a training officer. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Alan Baird III when asked if AdamCroman or Gary Spaven had any training as safety officers.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Had they implemented the appropriateguidelines and followed the appropriate guidelines for live fire trainingexercises, this could have been prevented. You shouldn’t have to risk your lifeto train. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">DavidRuppert, state Department of Labor PESH Bureau investigator.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">It’s very feasible for a smallvolunteer department to promote someone who is not experienced. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Douglas Whittaker, state certifiedfire instructor.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I don’t want to answer that becauseI’m unsure. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">AlanBaird III when asked about the foam burning with intense heat, due to it beinga petroleum-based product.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I would have to believe these peoplearen’t that well prepared and are not ready to undertake that kind of anexercise. It’s pure folly and it’s lucky the other guy didn’t die. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Dan Sehl, Lairdsville resident whenasked about the fatal incident.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The fire department is a volunteercommunity service. It’s like the Lions Club or other volunteer organizations.We try and do the best we can. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Don Jennings, Lairdsville firefighter since 1977.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I don’t think one person should besingled out and take the rap for this. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Jeff Jenkins, Lairdsville firefighter and Baird supporter.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">He’s a volunteer and you can’treally hold him to a professional standard. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Robert Moran, Baird’s defense attorney.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I think the strength of the defenseare the facts of this case. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Robert Moran, Baird’s defense attorney.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The sooner this whole thing getsdone, the better off the whole fire district will be for it. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Robert Walsh, Westmoreland FireDistrict Safety and Health Officer.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">He said he was responsible for thecatastrophe on Route 5. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Waylan Wilczek, Westmoreland firefighter of Baird at the de-briefing.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">He was happyâ€&brvbar;excited. It was thefirst time he ever saw any fire gear. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Carol Roberts, Bradley’s mother on Bradley getting his gear.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Baird’s a volunteer. People don’tvolunteer anymore. He’s given and given and given. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Robert Moran, Baird’s defenseattorney on Baird being charged in the death of Bradley Golden.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">My job is to make sure that bothsides get a fair trial and I’m going to do my level best to make that happen.Stay quiet, watch what’s going on and we won’t have any problems. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Judge Michael L. Dwyer to thecourtroom on opening day of the trial.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I’m going to move on. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Alan Baird III outside of thecourtroom moments after being found guilty of criminally negligent homicide.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I wish it had been a differentcharge, but at least he got something for taking my baby away from me.</span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> Carol Roberts, Bradley Golden’smother when asked for her reaction to the verdict.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Ben (Morris) and Brad (Golden) werestanding there. They had their gear on already, so I sent them down. I toldthem it couldn’t get much easier. All they had to do was go upstairs with alltheir gear, lay down on the floor and have some guys drag them out of thehouse. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">LairdsvilleChief Lance Croman on a request for two live victims.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">I stood up, banged on the walls acouple times, then fell backwards. That’s it. I next remember waking up ingrass in the front yard. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Benjamin Morris, Lairdsville firefighter who was with Bradley Golden inthe final minutes.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Brad didn’t make it. </span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Jamey Jenny, Brad’s friend quotingthe treating physician at the hospital.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">-Reactions from the nation’s fireservice community-</span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Reactions to the events ofLairdsville ranged from <i>confused</i> to <i>outrage</i> and every emotion inbetween. It remains as a hot topic on many websites devoted to firefighting. Astragic as it was, I believe that it will be included in future textbooks onfirefighting as an example of <b><i>what not to do</i></b> for a trainingexercise. The state Department of Labor in New York felt so strongly about the mistakesthat were made that it cited the Westmoreland Fire District with ELEVENviolations.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">And</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"> had NFPA 1403 been recognized aslaw in New York,there would have been even more citations and fines.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">The most perplexing question posedmost often was “why wasn’t anyone else charged in the death of Bradley Golden?”There were grants of immunity given to some, but with the overwhelming weightof the evidence at trial, why was it necessary to “strike deals” with some ofthe key figures in the case? Though they escaped criminal prosecution, theywere the targets of the civil suit in the end. Justice? Some think so. Stillothers are left feeling that the system failed. </span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">-<i>GOD BLESS YOU AND MAY YOU RESTIN PEACE BRADLEY GOLDEN-</i></span></b></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in; text-align: justify;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp;</span><b><u>Resources</u></b></span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Bill Farrell and Ken Little, <u>Utica</u><u> Observer Dispatch</u>; <i>Lairdsville:What Went Wrong,</i> 4/14/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Ken Little, <u>Utica Observer Dispatch</u>; <i>Firefighter’sTrial Starts Today</i>, 5/13/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Ken Little, <u>Utica</u><u>Observer Dispatch</u>; <i>Night of the Fatal Fire Detailed</i>, 5/15/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Ken Little, <u>Utica</u><u>Observer Dispatch</u>; <i>Witnesses Say They Didn’t Expect Fire</i>, 5/16/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Ken Little, <u>Utica</u><u>Observer Dispatch</u>; <i>Baird Trial; No Accelerants Used in Fire</i>,5/17/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Ken Little, <u>Utica</u><u>Observer Dispatch</u>; <i>Firefighters Expected ‘Smoke Exercise’</i>, 5/18/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Ken Little, <u>Utica</u><u>Observer Dispatch</u>; <i>Baird Takes Some Responsibility for Fire</i>,5/21/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Ken Little, <u>Utica</u><u>Observer Dispatch</u>; <i>Jury Finds Baird Guilty</i>, 5/23/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Bill Farrell<u>, UticaObserver Dispatch</u>; <i>Firefighters Watched Case Closely</i>, 5/23/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Bill Farrell, <u>Utica</u><u>Observer Dispatch</u>; <i>Emotions Run Strong</i>, 5/23/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">NIOSH, <u>Death in the Line of Duty</u>; A Summary of aNIOSH Firefighter Fatality Investigation; Fatality Assessment and ControlEvaluation Investigative Report #F2001-38; <i>Volunteer Firefighter Dies andTwo Others Are Injured During Live Burn Training-New York</i>, 10/31/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Kelly Hassett, <u>Utica Observer Dispatch</u>; <i>Baird’sAppeal Deadline Today</i>, 11/18/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Kelly Hassett<u>, UticaObserver Dispatch</u>; <i>Baird Requests Extension of Stay</i>, 11/19/02.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="text-decoration: none;"><br /></span></span></u></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Rome Sentinel</span></u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">; <i>Lawsuit Filed in Lairdsville Fireman’s Death</i>,3/25/03</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Jay Gallagher and Matthew Rodriguez, Firehouse.com; <i>New York</i><i> Bill Bars</i><i>‘Live’ Training Victims</i>, 6/20/03. (Courtesy of uticaOD.com)</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Jess Mandel MD, Joseph Schellenberg MD and Charles A. HalesMD, UpToDateOnline.com; <i>Smoke Inhalation</i>, 8/5/03</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">McGraw-Hill, Health Professions Division, <u>Trauma</u>,Fourth Edition; <i>Inhalation Injury</i>.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">WebMD Health, <u>Miller-Keane Medical Dictionary</u>; <i>Asphyxia</i>,2000.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;"><span style="text-decoration: none;"><br /></span></span></u></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">Merck Manual of Medical Information</span></u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt;">, Home Edition, 1997.</span></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><div class="MsoHeader" style="tab-stops: .5in;"><br /></div><a href="" name="_GoBack"></a><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-ansi-language: EN-US; mso-bidi-language: AR-SA; mso-fareast-font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; mso-fareast-language: EN-US;">Theopinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich,who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views offireengineering.com, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or hisdog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot bere-produced in any form.</span></b><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-995368522572175243?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-9953685225721752432011-09-23T01:15:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:16.006ZPaul Krugman: Biggest Loser is a Nobel Winner?noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:WordDocument> <w:View>Normal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:PunctuationKerning/> <w:ValidateAgainstSchemas/> <w:SaveIfXMLInvalid>false</w:SaveIfXMLInvalid> <w:IgnoreMixedContent>false</w:IgnoreMixedContent> <w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText>false</w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText> <w:Compatibility> <w:BreakWrappedTables/> <w:SnapToGridInCell/> <w:WrapTextWithPunct/> <w:UseAsianBreakRules/> <w:DontGrowAutofit/> </w:Compatibility> <w:BrowserLevel>MicrosoftInternetExplorer4</w:BrowserLevel> </w:WordDocument></xml><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:LatentStyles DefLockedState="false" LatentStyleCount="156"> </w:LatentStyles></xml><![endif]--><!--[if !mso]><img src="http://img2.blogblog.com/img/video_object.png" style="background-color: #b2b2b2; " class="BLOGGER-object-element tr_noresize tr_placeholder" id="ieooui" data-original-id="ieooui" /><style>st1\:*{behavior:url(#ieooui) }</style><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 10]><style> /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;}</style><![endif]--><div class="MsoNormal"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;"></span></u></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">I have always believed that I was not capable of hating my fellow Man.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">That’s not to say that, for my personal reasons, I have people that Ihold no fondness towards; not many, but some.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">But, I hate Paul Krugman.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Oh, don’t worry; I said that I didn’t have the capacity to hate myfellow MAN.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Paul Krugman is a repulsive, repugnant, reprehensible, reptilianreprobate!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">In addition, a man has scruples, morals, ethics and yes; a conscience.Krugman doesn’t.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">He is pissing away his “gift” in an arena where his political opinionsare far removed from his noted area of expertise, which is economics.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">You see, we cannot dismiss ANYTHING Krugman says, because he has hisbully pulpit aka The New York Times. Once a very prominent and relevant sourcefor current events, consumer confidence in the paper has eroded amidaccusations of plagiarism, poor vetting of “sources” and for stories that arethe product of the imagination of its writer.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">And then, there’s Krugman.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Since when has wild assertions with no linkage to even a scintilla oflogic qualify as “opinion”?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Krugman’s blog post, “The Years of Shame” wasn’t an “op-ed” article. Itwas a hate piece, pure and simple.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">To claim that 9/11 was an excuse to invade Iraq is narrow-minded; nay,small-minded.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">You use an excuse when you are late for work.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">You use an excuse when you forget to take the trash out.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">You DON’T use an excuse to send 100,000 U.S. troops into a foreign countryand into Harm’s way.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">THAT is to trivialize the value of human life.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Krugman is clearly confusing humanitarianism with imperialism.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">For some, there is no justification for military action. Krugman must bein this camp. Also, he no doubt believes that Israelis always the aggressor when they retaliate for the bombings perpetrated bythose who want Israelwiped from this Earth.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Oh; there are some who have profited in the days since 9/11, but Krugmanfailed to accurately identify them.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">There are a few; albeit very few, who agree with Krugman’s wackyassertions.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">He applies the broad brush to many Americans who couldn’t disagree morewith his statement, “â€&brvbar;and in its heart, the nation knows it”. Even though hewould not allow comments on his blog and took the extra step to disable hisemail, Krugman is finding out that sometimes, it is not a good idea to thinkout loud and put it to paper.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">As long as The New York Times continues to showcase his absurdities,they will continue to put a drain on our ecology and assault our common senseand our common decency.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Yeah; maybe “hate” is a little too strong.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Upon reflection, I don’t hate Paul Krugman.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">I despise him for his ginsu approach to writing.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">I pity him for his cowardice.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">I find it ironic that he believes his credibility as a writer comes fromhis Nobel Prize; a single event that leaves me to wonder about the nominationand selection process of such a “prestigious” award.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Doesn’t that award come with some money?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Hmmm.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">The opinions andviews expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who alsowrites as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views offireengineering.com, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or hisdog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot bere-produced in any form.</span></b></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-7059395848282752567?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-70593958482827525672011-09-16T22:43:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:16.334ZNever Forgetting is to Always Remembernoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:WordDocument> <w:View>Normal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:PunctuationKerning/> <w:ValidateAgainstSchemas/> <w:SaveIfXMLInvalid>false</w:SaveIfXMLInvalid> <w:IgnoreMixedContent>false</w:IgnoreMixedContent> <w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText>false</w:AlwaysShowPlaceholderText> <w:Compatibility> <w:BreakWrappedTables/> <w:SnapToGridInCell/> <w:WrapTextWithPunct/> <w:UseAsianBreakRules/> <w:DontGrowAutofit/> </w:Compatibility> <w:BrowserLevel>MicrosoftInternetExplorer4</w:BrowserLevel> </w:WordDocument></xml><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:LatentStyles DefLockedState="false" LatentStyleCount="156"> </w:LatentStyles></xml><![endif]--><!--[if !mso]><img src="http://img2.blogblog.com/img/video_object.png" style="background-color: #b2b2b2; " class="BLOGGER-object-element tr_noresize tr_placeholder" id="ieooui" data-original-id="ieooui" /><style>st1\:*{behavior:url(#ieooui) }</style><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 10]><style> /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;}</style><![endif]--><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">I have started and stopped this blog a couple of times now.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">The first time, there was too much anger. The second blog contained toomuch sarcasm.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Why?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Well; there are several reasons.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">First of all, I struggle with calling an event that was filled with somuch pain, suffering, sorrow and sadness an “anniversary”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">But, many are referring to the tenth year since the 9/11 attacks as “thetenth anniversary of 9/11”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Could we call it something else; something like “memorial” or“observance” or maybe “remembrance”?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">I don’t know, but to me, we <i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">celebrate</i>anniversaries and 9/11 doesn’t exactly put me into a celebratory mood. Iobserve 9/11 in my own way, but I don’t “celebrate” it. I will describe thatlater in this blog.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">From what I am seeing and reading, 9/11 has been grossly politicized inevery sense.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">From persistent accusations that our own government was somehowcomplicit to denying cancer benefits to those men and women who worked on ThePile in the days that followed the horrendous tragedy, even though medicalevidence proves linkage; our focus as a nation on those directly affected hasbeen lost.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Add to that our attorney general’s misguided notion of justice forterrorists to building a mosque near the Hallowed Grounds of the WTC and itonly perpetuates more suffering and sadness, instead of allowing affectedfamilies and friends to bring some sense of closure to such a senseless,violent act.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">I realize that some will never bring closure to 9/11 and I understandand respect that. There are no set processes for how to deal with tragedy. Weall grieve differently. It is at a very personal and private level, so we can’ttell anyone how to deal with it, because it might be that, in their minds, manyquestions remain unanswered and always will.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">And if it wasn’t already emotional and confusing enough, NYC MayorBloomberg announces first that clergy will not be included in the 9/11 ceremonynor will first responders. Their rightful place at the “official” ceremony hasbeen denied by the shameful act of a mayor who has no shame. It is politics atits ugliest and lowest form. I had hoped that Bloomberg would acquiesce, but atthis writing, he has not. His cowardly actions defy description.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Yet another reason for my angst as 9/11 approaches are the many “cottageindustries” that have grown out of 9/11.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">A recent study described that much of the money raised after 9/11 in thename of 9/11 never made it to a “recognized” charity.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">And we are supposed to be surprised by that revelation?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Though many of the charities could account for every dime taken in andspent, others could not. I know that the money that I helped to raise went frommy hand to the hand of an FDNY firefighter, so I have no doubts whatsoever thatit got into the right hands. But others weren’t so fortunate.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Anyone knows that where money is involved, corruption may find its wayinto the process and ten years later, it is still prevalent. It sickens me thatpredators would prey upon the emotional struggles of people who find itdifficult NOT to contribute money to what appears to be a charitable cause, butthey do.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Blame the tax codes, where anyone with the right tax form can claim“not-for-profit” status and rake in untold fortunesâ€&brvbar;until they are caught!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">And in closing, I question the call by some to make 9/11 a national“holiday”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">Perhaps what they meant to say is that 9/11 should be a national day ofremembrance, much like Veterans’ Day. I’d be all for that.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">But, I have the same problem with “holiday” as I have with“anniversary”. It simply leaves a bad taste in my mouth.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">If you think about it, we already have Memorial Day. The President coulddecree that this would be the day to honor those lost on 9/11. It would be veryappropriate to do so. However; 9/11 could still be a day that our firstresponders could honor those who lost their lives on that day as well. I justdon’t think that it should be treated like a vacation day for the millions whowould take it.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">In this tenth year since 9/11, much has gotten in the way of what shouldbe a solemn observance for those lost and for those who are still sufferingfrom the events of ten years ago.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">There will be several ceremonies throughout the nation that you canattend, but if you can’t attend one, then remember 9/11 in your own way,because there is no right way or wrong way.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">I will remember 9/11 by riding my motorcycle to Springfield, ILto the Illinois Firefighter Memorial. Next to that memorial is a beautiful,black granite memorial to 9/11. There will be no large gathering; just me andmy thoughts. It will be a time for personal reflection.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">I will not have to sit in front of the TV and watch the hours and hoursof replays of that day.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">It’s not because I can’t; it is because I don’t need to. The images ofthat day are forever seared into my soul and as long as I am alive, I willnever forget 9/11.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">TCSS.<a href="" name="_GoBack"></a></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10.0pt; line-height: 115%;">The opinions andviews expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who alsowrites as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.blogger.com/www.fireengineering.com">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire EngineeringMagazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. All articles by the authorare protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form withoutexpressed permission.</span></b></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-7579515724233382655?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-75795157242333826552011-09-06T23:20:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:16.505ZWhile America Slept, Lady Liberty Weptnoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div class="MsoNormal"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span></u></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">While many hard-working Americans were busy trying to eek out a living and saving towards their retirement, our elected officials were busy stealing our America’s dream. Hope for a better tomorrow was fading as each new bill was passed in the dead of night and contrary to the majority of public opinion.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">You realize that the mess that this country is in is our own damned fault; right?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Of course, I would expect many to disagree because we work, we pay our taxes, we support our public servants and the military and we believe in the Rule of Law.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Hey; that’s great!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">But, do you follow the news of what our elected representatives do on any given day?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Do you stay close to proposed legislation that could increase the burden to those already over-burdened?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">If you do, do you communicate your opinions to your representative?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Do you take the time to vote?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I know that a significant portion of our country isn’t engaged and haven’t been for some time.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Did Strom Thurmond and Jesse Helms serve so many years in Congress because they were THAT good or because they were so insulated from their constituents and so well connected to their political party’s hierarchy that it was next to impossible to vote them out? I think that is a fair question.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">At what point did elected officials in our federal government become public EMPLOYEES and not public servants?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I don’t think that the framers of the Constitution ever intended for our elected representatives to become “career politicians”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">How is it that our country’s President can serve no more than two (2) four (4) year terms and yet, a Congressperson can serve 40, 50 or 60 years?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Clearly; while American “slept”, a body of government that was elected by the people for the people morphed into <i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">buy the people for themselves.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Equal representation was no longer equal, but directly proportionate to the size of a campaign contribution.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Special interest groups were popping up like zits on a teenage and suddenly, we had politicians with special needsâ€&brvbar;power and greed.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Now; we are a government by proxy.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Proxy</span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"> is defined as: <i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">the authority or power to act for another or a document giving such powers.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">When you strictly interpret that definition, representative government is a proxy process in and of itself.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Americans were either foolish or na&Atilde;&macr;ve to believe that they were electing who would; you knowâ€&brvbar;REPRESENT them! When you give something as powerful as your vote to someone else, you have the expectation that they are voting for YOU and in YOUR best interests and not theirs’.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">But, what we have gotten is a process that is so convoluted and complex that it discourages a “commoner” from wanting to run, but if they do and by the grace of God and a lot of luck they should win, then the next several months of their term is spent “learning the ropes”. Apparently, it isn’t even close to what we learned in Civics class. I have to assume that getting a bill introduced, debated and passed is every bit as complicated as the current U.S. Tax Code.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Consequently, unless you have been in Congress since the turn of the century (Strom and Jesse); you simply sit there in the Chamber, let the three top dogs of your political party make THEIR decisions, collect your paycheck and points towards retirement and start your campaign for re-election. If you look at recent history, this would apply aptly to our current state of affairs with Reid, Pelosi, Durbin, Boehner, McConnell and a couple of their oldest and dearest friends from “back home” calling the shots.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The days of serving the people have become self-serving.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Recently, a poll has shown that Congress is out of touch with the rest of the country. Could that be because they don’t feel the same economic pressures that America’s households feel while trying to stay within their budgets and avoiding borrowing money? Are their 30 year-old kids still living with THEM? Doubtful.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Our representatives have spent so much time packing their golden parachutes that America can no longer afford the “plane” to jump from.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">While America remains grounded, along with our fleet of space shuttles, our elected representatives are flying high with enough perks to insulate them from an increasingly, maddening crowd!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">In fact, they spend so much time defending their immoral and unethical ways that they no longer listen to the enablers; the people of the United States.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">But, when a collective group made up of both political parties, independents and the awakened Silent Majority rises up to say, “ENOUGH”; THEY are branded as “anti-government” and “un-American”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">How ironic.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Politicians who are blinded by their own greed; politicians living lavishly off of OUR taxes; politicians completely oblivious to the magnitude of the damage that they have inflicted upon this country that we love so dearly believe that THEY are the patriots!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Why?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Because America was reinforcing their poor performance by re-electing them.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">We didn’t want to take the time to look at voting records, biographies of new candidates or to run for an office at the local, state or federal level.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">No; it was easier to just let someone else handle that “political stuff” (<i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">thank you; just give me the bullet points</i>)!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">What we didn’t figure on was; while giving someone else the proxy to act on our behalf in matters of government, we were abdicating powers guaranteed to us by the Constitution.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">As our Congress sits there in Washington with an 87% DISAPPROVAL rating, the only thing on their minds is how they can survive the next election; even though the very survival of this country is at stake.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Look at it in this rather primitive perspective: government is the cigarette; lobbyists are the smoke; America is the ashtray and Congress is the cancer.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">And in my opinion, it is time to kick the habit and get healthy again!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of </span></b><a href="http://www.blogger.com/blogger.g?blogID=5993456438748855454"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">www.fireengineering.com</span></b></a><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.</span></b></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-7782927263970986690?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-77829272639709866902011-09-06T23:12:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:16.677ZSudden Separationnoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div align="center" class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"><br /></span></u></b></div><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Anyone in the fire service understands that their mortality is under assault every time the tones drop.</span> <br /><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">You can be gone in a flash in a flashover, a collapse, a vehicle accident, a fall or in a less violent but every bit as insidious manner such as a heart attack.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">It can be sudden and without warning and it leaves many to ask the question, “Why”?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">My brother-in-law George was walking down the hallway of his house that morning, grabbed his chest and without saying a word, collapsed and died.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Sudden.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">The Reverend George Neel and my sister, Judy spent their lives together after meeting at the 4Cs Caf&Atilde;&copy; in Galva, Illinois, where Judy worked as a waitress and George would eat his meals there when he was in town.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">A marriage that wasn’t supposed to be and then literally lasted a lifetime filled with each others’ constant companionship ended with George’s sudden, fatal heart attack.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Separation.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">When Judy and George met, Judy had been out of high school for a couple of years, had no desire to go to college, was living at home with the rest of us, while working at the caf&Atilde;&copy;, until she figured out what lay ahead for her.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">George was a truck driver for Andersen Windows at the time and was a single father raising three young boys; Jerry, Steven and Rod.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">My dad was always an excellent judge of a person’s character and he had no problems with the relationship, but Mom was the polar opposite. She was absolutely opposed to Judy dating a trucker, because Mom had heard and believed all of the stories about truckers and their “runnin’ around”. From “having girlfriends in every town to their godless hard livin’ and lying”; Mom wasn’t going to have one of her girls dating one-let alone to marry one!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Mom and Judy’s fights were epic, but Judy was in love and would fight for it until she and George were married.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">For awhile, they lived in a little town just west of us in a little apartment along the highway that went through Altona. It was the five of them making their lives together.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">George continued to drive trucks for many years. In fact; I got to go with him a few times.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">He was a big man; 6’3” tall and roughly 280 lbs. at the time. He had huge hands that would completely swallow the hand of others that he shook out of friendship. He was a gentle giant, whose voice though loud, was never menacing. He had a kind face, a Kentucky drawl and a big heart.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">And he had stories; thousands of them. He had travelled millions of miles and had a story for every trip that he took in his truck.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Judy and George had one child together. Arthur Allen would join his three brothers. They named him after me and another brother-in-law at the time.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Back then, I didn’t give it much thought, but in later years, I realized the significance of the honor that they had bestowed upon me by naming a child after me.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">George wanted off of the road. He was looking for a more “normal” life, where he could be home more. He decided to become a minister.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">George got his divinity degree and soon found himself in front of his church members in a small Southern church. His calling would find him and Judy moving a couple of times, as his assignments changed.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">The naked eye would not have seen George as a minister. In fact; you might not have known it even after talking to him for awhile. George did not push the religious aspects that filled his life. He didn’t punctuate his statements with religious pronouncements. When making a point, he didn’t rely on stories that were from the Bible. His “collar” was blue, through and through.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">No; George liked to talk about family, fishing, politics-you know; normal stuff. If he felt like my soul needed saving, either he was quietly working on it behind the scenes or he knew that eventually I would find the way.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">That’s why I loved and admired George so much.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">He combined his own life experiences with a subtle teaching style that found him more like you and less like a man of God. His religion was the calming effect that you felt from occasional emotional circumstances.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">When Dad was hospitalized in May of 1992, George and Judy came up to be with us. When it became clear that Dad was going to die, it was George who prepared Dad for his journey into eternity.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Then, one by one, we all said our good-byes to Dad. I’ll never forget it and I still get emotional when I think of our final moments together. Dad’s death was NOT sudden. He died on June 5, 1992.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">George presided over Dad’s funeral.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Now; George and Dad had grown very close over the years. They had much in common and especially fishing. It was with George on a fishing trip down south that would be Dad’s last time fishing.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">George found himself in front of our large family at the service for Dad and his poise, grace and passion was amazing. I could not have done it without breaking down into an uncontrollable flood of tears.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">With George doing Dad’s service, it felt right, because though Dad was not a deeply religious man, he at least had a relationship with a man of the cloth; his son-in-law.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">When Mom passed away on April 22, 1999, George was again called upon to do the services and again, it felt as though it was “kept in the family”, so to speak, and with George speaking so fondly of memories of Mom and remember; this was a lady that wasn’t too fond of him in the beginning.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">But, that’s the thing. George, without even trying or at least without showing it, had come into Mom’s favor, because even she could see how happy George and Judy were together.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I will miss him deeply for his intelligence, compassion, world views, his blue collar work ethic, and his pride when he spoke of all of his boys-Jerry, Steven, Rod and Art.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">That he was able to find comfort, even in the midst of the tragedies in his own life and all the while, console others with similar circumstances is a testament to the giant heart housed within this man.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">But, what I will miss the most will be OUR talks, our exchange of emails and the joy and pride that I could see in my sister Judy.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Yes; I am going to miss my big brother.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Heaven got a good one.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.blogger.com/www.fireengineering.com">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. All articles by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form without expressed permission.</span></b></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-812056084299364958?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-8120560842993649582011-08-17T01:17:00.000Z2012-04-06T12:17:17.067ZDebt Ceiling Debate is in the Debt Gutter!noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div align="center" class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"><br /></span></u></b></div><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I don’t know about the rest of you, but I have had it with all of the political gamesmanship being played with our hard earned money.</span> <br /><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">While our “elected” officials enjoy CEO-style perks, the rest of us have to live within our budgets and all the while watch as our tax dollars are squandered by those elected to spend it wisely.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">My income is taxed; my house that is paid for is taxed and everything that I purchased is taxed with all of that money used to pay for government-local, state and federal.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I don’t have a car and driver furnished for me to shuttle me to and from meetings. I don’t have a gym provided to me free of charge. I don’t have a paid staff to help me with my job duties. I don’t have free medical benefits and I sure as hell don’t have a pension, compliments of the U.S. taxpayerâ€&brvbar;but if I did, it might just insulate me from the reality that everyday citizens are struggling to make ends meet. It might cloud my judgment when spending someone else’s money.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">When I go to the polls in November of 2012, I am going to vote for ADULTS; people who have properly gauged the state of our nation’s financial condition and who can sit down as adults, have adult conversations and make mature decisions that more accurately reflect sound money management.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I am tired of the fear tactics being used by BOTH parties. I am fed up with Harry Reid, who is nothing more than a five-year-old boy in the body of a 71 year-old man. I cannot look at or listen to Tim Geitner without thinking about anything lower than whale scum. He more than any other single individual brought this country to the brink of economic collapse in 2008. And Nancy Pelosi; Nancy, you don’t have the big gavel OR the big hammer anymore. Go away!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I am not a big fan of Michele Bachman, but she has more grit than Rooster Cogburn and more class than a 1937 Mercedes Benz 540 K. She is principled, intelligent and leaves no question on where she stands on the issue. This is not to say that I would vote for her, but I would seriously consider it. Oh; and she engages in debate like the grown up that she is. Plus; she is sticking to her promises made to her constituents, including not raising the debt limit and pushing for a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I thought that we had a thorough-bred in John Boehner when he became the Speaker of the Houseâ€&brvbar;</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Then; he cried.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">John! We cry at funerals and our kids’ weddings and maybe the birth of our grandchildren.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">We DON’T cry after we have been elected to the third most powerful position in our federal government. Every time you go in front of the cameras, I wonder if I am going to see a tear form in the corner of your eye. Many of us grew up in tough times just like you. We did our fair share of crying THEN. It made us tougher NOW. Man up and go kick Harry Reid’s ass.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">And what about Obama?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">He is still organizing. He isn’t leading; he’s lecturing with that condescending tone. He acts as if he’s still on the campaign trail. If I played as much golf as he does, I wouldn’t be able to hold down a full time job. He likes to brag about how he can afford to pay more in taxes. Well, Barry; then stop taking advantage of all of those deductions and loopholes and write that check to the Treasury. I happen to think that I pay enough.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">And where has Scott Brown been? You know; the guy from Massachusetts who was going to save the country? Did his pick up truck break down or what?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Paul Ryan has been noticeably invisible. After he failed to get his plan passed, did he take his balls and go home?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">God, I miss Joe Liebermann. I thought that I would NEVER say that, but at least you knew what you were getting with Joe. He was almost a liberal Republican, if there is such a thing.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">ABC, CNN, NBC, MSNBC, CBS, FOXâ€&brvbar;</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Chuck Schumer, Chuck Todd, Mitch McConnell, John McCain, Barney Frank, Chris Mathews, Dick Durbin, Stuart Varney, Jay Carney, Glenn Beck, Jesse Jackson, Ann Coulter, Ben Bernanke, Keith Olbermann, Janeane Garofalo, Michelle Malkin, Al Sharpton, Rush Limbaugh have all been to the “hyperbolic chamber” and for the past several months have managed to keep the country’s knees knocking with their non-stop, doom and gloom diatribes.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">What about our Bills? No; not those kind. I am talking about Bill O’Reilly, Bill Maher and Bill Cristol.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Bill O’Reilly enjoys mixing it up with an administration that is STILL blaming Bush. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Bill Maher; I took you more seriously when you were a mildly entertaining comedian. Now that you are a mouthpiece for the Far Left liberals, we no longer find the same things funny.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Bill Cristol makes very good points, but it’s hard to understand him. He talks as if he only has about 20 percent of his lung capacity. And his presentation of his position on an issue doesn’t come off as scary of the others.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Stop with the commentary and REPORT the NEWS! I don’t want your opinion. I have one of my own. I want to listen to newsâ€&brvbar;NOT your take on the news. Support whomever you want on YOUR time and stop wasting MY time. Try to remember why you got into journalism in the first place.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I am fed up with all of the name-calling and all of the hyperbolic comparisons to terrorists and hostages and other diabolical synonyms.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I am going to start the Pea Party and say, “Piss on them all”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">It’s time to get rid of all of the career politicians, re-tool the Constitution to keep power in the hands of the PEOPLE and secure a better future for the elderly and our kids.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">To most of those named in this article? Well, let’s just say that I am going step away from them for awhile. We need some time away from each other. I have to re-evaluate their impact upon my “reasonableness”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">For a democracy that is 235 years old, it seems like it has a lot of growing up to do or at least the people elected to discharge their duties in accordance with the Constitution do.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Oh and this just inâ€&brvbar;</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">We have a “debt deal”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Oh joy!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.blogger.com/www.fireengineering.com">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. All articles by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form without expressed permissio</span></b><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-3564486956535543219?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-35644869565355432192011-08-01T01:03:00.000Z2012-03-22T12:47:31.785ZChief Reason with a Sit Rep!noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div align="center" class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"><br /></span></u></b></div><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Perhaps many of you may have noticed that it has been a month since my last blog or maybe you haven’t.</span> <br /><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I also missed my first Fire Engineering Talk Radio show in July. I hope to do the August show, but for right now, it is beyond my control.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">You see; my life has seen some changes.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Changing jobs is never easy. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Those comforts that we surround ourselves with over the course of many years with a company are gone as soon as you turn in your company possessions, pack up your personal belongings and turn the lights off in your office for the last time.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Also gone are the relationships that you have spent time building and strengthening. You have memories that are of no consequence as you move to your new company, because it will take skill to establish your credibility as a new employee who is responsible for leading the company’s safety program.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">It is interesting to note that I was told by an old colleague many years ago to limit yourself to what you can fit into one box when you leave a company (I filled less than one box). I think his advice goes beyond what’s apparent to a much deeper level, which are our emotional attachments.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I can tell a lot about a person when I look around their office or cubicle. They have created a “home away from home”. What they have really done is to place “walls” between them and their effectiveness as a “titan of industry”. They have found their comfort level, but have lost their edge, which is to say that they find themselves thinking and talking about <i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">personal</i> issues instead of <i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">personnel</i> issues. As a result, their performance suffers along with the company’s performance.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Now; don’t take that the wrong way. I want to learn about the people that I work with-you know; what makes them “tick”-but without the expectation that we will somehow become best friends. That is one of those mysterious nuances that might develop in spite of a work relationship.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">And THAT might be what really separates firefighting from private sector jobs.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">In firefighting, it’s important to know co-workers on a more personal level. That is an inherent ingredient to becoming a member of the brotherhood. It establishes that sacred trust and knowledge that your brothers and sisters will risk their life to save yours’. I get that!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">In the private sector and in regards to safety, we establish policies and procedures so that employees WON’T have to take those types of risks. That’s why it’s called “risk management”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">It is for that reason, in my opinion, that the two cultures clash. Firefighters want latitude to determine what they risk and when they risk it. Private companies aren’t willing to extend that latitude to employees for one, basic reason and that is that each employee may not make the best decision. So, policies are written to compel employees to make the best decision and when they don’t and when weighed against past practice; the behavior is corrected by whatever means is spelled out in company policy.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Typically, what I have found when I join a company is a recordkeeping nightmare. From first aid logs to OSHA logs, it leaves much to the imagination and much to be desired!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">That is not the case at my new job.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">What has taken me away from my “outside” interests to a total focus on my job interests is the total lack of adherence to basic, personal safety. It has already translated into work injuries.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">In other words; employees are ignoring safety policies, because they are not being enforced. That is a recipe for disaster and especially because they operate equipment that could kill them in a blink of an eye. Continuing to operate equipment that is unsafe to operate goes unnoticed by the same people who will not wear basic PPE. They have been left to believe that getting product out the door is worth the risks that are taken and when it isn’t addressed; the risky behavior is reinforced.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">It is THERE that I am spending all of my time.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">As we have found with firefighting, it takes solid leaders and a strong team effort to be successful. Knowing your enemy and training for the fight will get everyone home.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">THAT is what I am working towards.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Until then, you won’t be hearing much from me.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.blogger.com/www.fireengineering.com">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. All articles by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form without expressed permission.</span></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"></span></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-426093679283249488?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-4260936792832494882011-07-24T23:43:00.000Z2012-03-06T13:59:35.254ZOne Blog Under God!noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">On Sunday, June 19<sup>th</sup>, NBC decided to show a patriotic montage during the showing of the U.S. Open golf tournament (</span><a href="http://youtu.be/xZIDvLJhSOE"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"><span style="color: blue;">Patriotic video</span></span></a><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">). As a result, they committed a monumental error in their omissions.</span> <br /><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The <i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">Pledge of Allegiance</i> that I have been reciting since grade school has included the words “one nation under God, indivisible”. That any of the words from this very short, but very powerful recitation be omitted is very noticeable and I would struggle to believe that their omissions were a “mistake”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I don’t care what religion you are.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I don’t care what political party that you support.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I only care that you would attempt to infringe upon any of my freedoms.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">But, in case you haven’t noticed, the various TV networks through their news shows and their newscasters are making every effort to BECOME the news story with their clear bias of what they are reporting. I wish it wasn’t so, but it is.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I am of the opinion that NBC was attempting to appease a very small number of viewers who object to references to God and must have mistakenly believed that removing the “offensive” words would cause no problems. They now understand that “little things” mean a lot to the American public.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">If NBC saw a problem with the verbiage that was going to drive the </span><a href="http://youtu.be/xZIDvLJhSOE"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"><span style="color: blue;">Patriotic video</span></span></a><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">, then why didn’t they set the montage to an instrumental musical number that would contain no offensive phrasing?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I believe in God and I believe that the Bible is the word of God. It is how I was raised. I attended a Methodist church and I married a Lutheran. I support faith-based charities, but I do not attend church on a regular basis. My only closeness to God is by happenstance; in that one of my brothers-in-law is a reverend. I believe that the Reverend Neel can summon up a little something special for me if the occasion should require it. At least; I think it gives me an edge. Well; even if it doesn’t get me closer to God, at least I am closer to my Southern brethren and my dear sister.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I have had events occur in my life that have left me believing that there was an intervention of the highest order, but these same events have also left me questioning why a compassionate God would allow the events to even occur! I don’t view God as someone who is Santa Claus-like or like David Copperfield for that matter, but I can’t believe that some of my misfortune was a part of God’s plan for me. I truly do not have the understanding of the theology nor do I have a divinity degree that will unlock these questions in my mind.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">For those with a different belief system from mine; I respect your right to believe in something or someone else; if at all. I don’t wish you any ill will, unless you practice a religion that calls for my death. Then, I have a problem with it.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I struggle with sentiment that is critical either way on religious/non-religious beliefs, because we are a nation that was founded by those persecuted and in many cases, murdered for their religious beliefs.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">We are a nation that has always been identified as the land of opportunity, a melting pot of many cultures and a tolerant people. The freedom to choose has always been a hallmark and an accepting/inclusive attitude among the different races, genders and religions has defined us as a nation.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"><span style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp;</span>I hope that we are not seeing an erosion to our society’s moral base because the majority has become apathetic and a hodge-podge of common causes from fringe groups has become more vocal.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I believe that when we engage in events that have us declaring our citizenship, stewardship and ownership of all of those things that creates our patriotic feelings, NO ONE has the right to attempt to stifle those feelings. If someone who doesn’t feel the same way is at the same event, then they are there to raise issues counter to mine. Again; I won’t bother you and your position, as long as you don’t bother mine. I won’t put you in a headlock and force you to sing “God Bless America”, but I WILL reject Jeremiah Wright’s assessment of America.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Dissension is not new to me. I dissented and rebelled numerous times while growing up. I engaged in protests, strikes and civil disobedience and I won’t deny anyone else’s right, as long as it doesn’t violate the rights of others.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">As I have said in the past; I have been witness to some of the most historically significant events of the past 50 years. If you want to talk about dissension; a couple of very stark examples come to mind and I was witness to them via TV. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Ironically, both occurred in 1968.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">First there were the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City. It is referred to as the “Black Power salute”. After winning the 200 meter run, U.S. runners Tommie Smith and third place finisher, John Carlos each donned a single black glove and then raised their gloved, clenched fists into the air as the National Anthem was played during their medal ceremony. At the time, I thought it epitomized a defining moment of defiance in our country. Smith and Carlos were sent home as punishment. But, their symbolic gesture was etched into the minds of those who witnessed it. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The other example is the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago, IL. I will never forget the chant “the whole world is watching” as Chicago police were ordered into Grant Park to break up the demonstration of thousands of anti-war protesters using the setting of the Convention as their backdrop. As Chicago police showed no mercy as they swung their nightsticks and kicked protesters who fell to the ground, protesters yelled “the whole world’s watching” as television cameras caught the brutal beatings live and brought them into our living room TVs. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Also of note in 1968 was the running of Alabama governor George Wallace, an avowed segregationist, for President and the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. Dissension played a role in their lives as well. Both met with violence as a response to their dissent. Wallace was shot in 1972 and left paralyzed from the waist down. King, Jr. was subjected to all kinds of violence as a civil rights activist before being shot and killed by James Earl Ray.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">In this country, I believe that the information-all of the information-should be presented and decisions of interpretation, validity and use of that information left in the hands of the person (s). Omissions can dramatically change every aspect or intent of the information. What we are given should not be decided by some self-righteous/self-important “editor” or “program director”. Censorship comes with unintended consequences.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">It is that interpretation, validation and use of the information that establishes the basis for our belief systems, moral compass and judicious decision-making that frames how we spend our time on this Earth. We should not be cajoled or bullied; beaten or killed because we don’t share the same views.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">If we are asked at a public assembly to bow our heads and pray; if you don’t wish to do so, then don’t, but don’t deny me my freedom to do so.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">If you don’t want to observe the religious holidays, that’s OK with me, but don’t tell me that I have to take MY decorations down.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">If you don’t hold the same political views as me, I can respect your right to disagree, as long as it is done respectfully, but don’t call me names and berate my intelligence, because we do not agree on a political course of action.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I happen to believe that we are and always will be <i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">one nation under God.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">You don’t have to agree with me.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">But, be tolerant and respectful…please.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 10pt;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of </span></b><a href="http://www.blogger.com/www.fireengineering.com"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"><span style="color: blue;">www.fireengineering.com</span></span></b></a><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.</span></b></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-9101388560301983085?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-91013885603019830852011-06-22T15:59:00.000Z2012-02-28T13:41:53.933ZThoughts of a Garden Varietynoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">These past, few months have been “unusual” for me. For the first time in many years, I had to prepare myself to seek employment. It was my goal to have a new job before the lay-off became effective.</span> <br /><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">My work as a risk manager for my current employer will end on June 24<sup>th</sup>. My work for my new employer will start on June 28<sup>th</sup>.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">What is interesting to note is that I thought that I bombed at the interview and who knows; maybe the strength of my resume off-set my weak interview. I will never know, but suffice it to say that I was able to secure employment without a gap in my work history. At least, I saved our state and my soon-to-be former employer unemployment benefits.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">When I received word that an offer for a new job was being extended, my wife and I were at a local casino. We were there to play the slots. After I spoke with a representative for my potential, new employer, I put some money into a penny slot and hit a $200 jackpot. Not a bad return on a five dollar investment.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">My good fortune continued onto the golf course the next night when our team defeated the other first place team in our golf league. Then, on Saturday; my wife and I played in a couples’ tourney and I won the longest drive. SHE won at cards afterwards. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">It would appear that I am in a cycle of momentum that I hope continues for some time.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">I find it strange and very perplexing that we can overcome our own self-doubts when it comes to dispensing advice to others. Think about all of the twists and turns in our own lives that have tugged at our self-confidence and self-control. Is there strength of character that is called upon to settle our doubts? If not, then how can we in good conscience offer advice to others who are faced with similar circumstances? How is it done without giving rise to hypocrisy?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">I have a very small support network where it comes to my personal life. Granted; I have a large circle of professional colleagues that I can prevail upon to move my careers in the right direction, but where it comes to personal decisions, I have to trust my wife and my gut. I stopped being the sole arbiter over my life on the day that I was married. “Me” became “we” and the simple became a little more complex.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">I can point to the previous paragraph as one of the reasons that my wife and I will celebrate 35 years of marriage this year. It hasn’t been a “story book” marriage. We had to put some hard work into being a good couple, good parents and good citizens. As with everything in my life, dating back to when I was a young boy, it didn’t come easy for me. It was no longer just MY self-destructive ways; it would have a collateral effect on my mate, if it were to continue. So, that had to change. I had to realize that the effects of any of my decisions went beyond just me.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">To complicate matters, my lazy side has struggled with that whole “hard work is its own reward” thing and then, I think about the GARDENS!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">That’s right; gardens. Vegetable gardens. HUGE plots that required the attention of everyone in our family, which was TEN of us. We were all going to benefit from the garden, so we were expected to help with the garden.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Dad; I hate beets. Do I have to help weed the beets even though I won’t eat them?</span></i><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;"></span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Dad: <i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">YES!</i></span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">In previous blogs, I revealed that I grew up just north of the poverty line. Dad and I shot game to put food on the table and fished for the same reason. Now; it wouldn’t have been much of a meal without something to complement the wild game. In our house, it was vegetables that were grown in our garden and canned by my mom.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Note: for those of you who are unfamiliar with the term “canning”, I would suggest that you Google it. “Canning” vegetables or fruits for that matter takes a lot of skill and is very labor intensive. Mom made the BEST applesauce that I have ever eaten. Bar none! She also made grape juice, jellies and jams. Wow!<i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"></i></span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">To describe our garden as a local tourist attraction would not do it justice. It was a true testament to the human spirit and my dad’s obsession with having the biggest and the best looking garden in town. There would be no weeds in HIS garden. He would not stand for foxtails and other broadleaf weeds of robbing his hard work of the water and nutrients and deny his veggies to reach their full potential; not when it was feeding TEN mouths.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">So; we would spend evenings after Dad got home from working in the scrapyard and weekends in the early morning hours pulling weeds and carrying buckets of water to water our corn, potatoes, green beans, carrots, radishes, onions, peppers, eggplant, squash, beets, turnips, peas, tomatoes, cucumbers, okra, lettuce and lima beans. The water was available from a well to a hand pump that was next to our garden. No hoses hooked to sprinklers. It was buckets and water can sprinklers for us.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Throughout the summer, vegetables would come into season and they would be heartily consumed fresh out of the garden. I must confess that, back then, I wasn’t exactly thrilled with vegetables, with but one, clear exception…potatoes. I loved them. I could eat them raw with a <span style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp;</span>sprinkle of salt. And now? Hah; I would pay extra for that freshness if I could find it in the grocery store. Come to think of it; we DO pay extra, because now they call it “organically” grown.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Then, Mom would spend a week or more canning everything up. She would use pint and quart jars that she had saved (usually mayonnaise jars with Ball lids, rings and gaskets) and would can corn, beets, green beans, peas, tomatoes (juice, stewed and whole pealed) to a soup combining potatoes, corn, green beans, lima beans, peas, tomatoes, carrots and onions.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">I remember that our vegetables were also used as currency in some instances. Dad would need something and instead of paying money, he would be told to bring vegetables as payment. He would also take fish to friends who would return the kindness in some other way. I didn’t understand the concept when I was young, but it is very clear now.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">It seems like when I reach a crossroad, I get nostalgic. I don’t think I’m right in the head, because I remember how much I detested going to that garden, working in a blistering sun and giving up sandlot baseball just to eat vegetables that I wasn’t very fond of but now realizing that I would give anything to go back there again. In my own way, the little vegetable garden that I have in my backyard serves as a reminder. And yes; I will not have weeds in my garden either. I AM my dad when I’m in that garden.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">And just like my dad, when a door closes, you cannot be afraid to walk through another that opens. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">All of those times growing up when I found my butt on the end of Dad’s boot or Mom’s paddle- both figuratively and literally; all of the lectures, time-outs with no TV and moments spent in the solitude of my room have caused me to appreciate the effectiveness of my parents parenting skills, whether is was by design or by trial and error; it worked!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">In my lifetime, my father had THREE jobs plus his part-time cop gig. If conditions had been right, he would have stayed at the scrap yard until he retired. That “scrap yard” is still in business today. He gave up job number two because it was second shift and with 8 kids in school, Dad was missing out big time, so he went to his third and last job from where he retired. I bought the gold watch and had it inscribed so that Dad would think that the company gave it to him upon his retirement. He was so thrilled and so proud of that watch. He wore bib over-alls a lot and prominently displayed the watch in a front pocket. He would not pass up an opportunity to tell someone that he got the watch from his company. He never knew any different and now, I have the watch.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">The moral of this story is that, whenever you find yourself going down a different path, take your mind to familiar territory to erase the fear and the doubt. When you remember those events that called upon your courage; even at a very young age, the task or the event doesn’t seem as daunting. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Growing up, I couldn’t wait to “grow up”. I couldn’t leave my childhood behind me fast enough. I thought I wanted to forget a lot of things that happened to me when I was a kid.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Now; I struggle to remember, but I WANT to remember, because what I thought were the worst of times now occupies my thoughts with the realization that they were, in fact, some of the BEST days of my life.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">I will take those thoughts to my new job. And even though my childhood and my parents are gone; both will serve to help me to succeed.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">The views and opinions expressed are those of the author, <personname w:st="on">Art Goodrich</personname>, who also writes under the name ChiefReason.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>They do not reflect the views and opinions of </span></b><a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;"><span style="color: blue;">www.fireengineering.com</span></span></b></a><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. Articles written by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form.</span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;"></span></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-7856392843853989011?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-78563928438539890112011-06-16T19:37:00.000Z2012-02-06T13:58:04.940ZYou Have the Right to Remain Salient!noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div align="center" class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><u><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"><br /></span></u></b></div><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Yes; I like titles that are a play on words.</span> <br /><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Salient</span></i></b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"> &ndash; (say-lee-ent) adj. Projecting or jutting beyond a line or surface; protruding. Strikingly conspicuous; prominent. Noticeable. Springing; jumping.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">As we are seeing, many Americans who have held silent over the years are now speaking out about the condition of the human condition (and especially THEIR condition); how exclusive our &ldquo;representative&rdquo; form of government has become; how they can feel a positive future slipping through the loopholes in legislation passed in the dead of night, when few were watching; how the &ldquo;needy&rdquo; have become the &ldquo;greedy&rdquo; with their selfish sense of entitlement; how &ldquo;community organizing&rdquo; is nothing more than code for organized demonstrations that are designed to deceive the majority into thinking that they are the minority; and how they are seeing their voice getting smaller, as the private sector shrinks and government grows bigger by the day. It has allowed for the unions to add another layer of bureaucracy onto the already-bloated bureaucratic behemoth of government.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Of course; I am stating my opinion, which is salient.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Have you ever noticed how some will disguise their opinions as statements of facts?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Or, how some will state fact and then offer up their unsolicited opinions? The news media has been doing a lot of that lately.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">No; it isn&rsquo;t just the &ldquo;mainstream&rdquo; media doing it.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">TV, radio and print media have all been practicing various spin mastering for the candidates of THEIR choice. Bias has been around for some time in that once unbiased arena known as our world of news.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">It&rsquo;s funny, but I could never figure out where Walter Cronkite, Chet Huntley, David Brinkley, John Chancellor, Peter Jennings or Dan Rather were positioned politically, because they approached their jobs as newsmen; as if they were asking questions for the rest of the nation, regardless of political affiliation.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">But, look at the state of the media today. Truly; it&rsquo;s not like the old days. Investors with political agendas pour money into a news company and exert tremendous influence on the political direction of the news outlet. I&rsquo;ll stop there for fear of sounding like Glenn Beck.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">But let me ask you this: if people with special interests are spending millions of dollars in political campaign contributions in the various political parties, then how can they NOT be buying influence on legislation that affects them? If that is not the case, then why can&rsquo;t they put containers out like UNICEF and get their money that way; that is, if what the money is going for is a worthy cause?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I have to point out the irony in National Public Radio (NPR), though.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Their name would lead one to believe that they exist for the public-the ENTIRE public, but it doesn&rsquo;t. Yet, they receive public (taxpayer) funding. I suppose if you are an intellectual elitist or have liberal tendencies, then you probably have the channel programmed into your radios and I would suspect that you also enjoy your share of public television too. It&rsquo;s OK; public radio/public TV; it&rsquo;s all the same. It&rsquo;s funny but it was public television where I first met Monty Python&rsquo;s Flying Circus, Benny Hill, Black Adder, Fawlty Towers and Red Green. Exquisite comedy is its only redeeming quality, I guess. Wait; I can&rsquo;t forget Austin City Limits. It reminds me of the old days of Midnight Special hosted by Wolfman Jack or Don Kirshner&rsquo;s Rock Concert. I must pause?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">How can groups of people, who are participating in freedom of assembly, exercising their rights to free speech-both that are rights provided to Americans under the Constitution-use these very tactics to trample the same rights of those with opposing views?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">When did it become fashionable to shout down differences of opinions?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Don&rsquo;t bring a bullhorn to a PA address.</span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">When live, streaming video shows these organizations using tactics designed to intimidate or coerce their political opponents, then why is it so surprising that some reporters would refer to them as a &ldquo;mob&rdquo;? Why is there a criminal charge of &ldquo;mob action&rdquo; that can be filed under the law under certain circumstances, but disrupting the workplace of elected officials and littering state property is OK? </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">These are just some of the questions that populate my mind.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Next subject:</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I have read many articles lamenting about the fire services&rsquo; loss of status; post 9/11.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Correct me if I&rsquo;m wrong, but the heroes of 9/11 were at Shanksville, the Pentagon and the World Trade Center on that day. From every day Joes to the police, port authority, fire/EMS and hospitals; heroism was on display for the rest of the world to see on September 11, 2001.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Suddenly and without warning, ALL fire, police and EMS were seen and treated as heroes.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">9/11 wasn&rsquo;t some PR campaign. It wasn&rsquo;t a &ldquo;light bulb&rdquo; that went off in someone&rsquo;s head.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">It was the darkest day in the history of our fire service and of our country.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">While families and friends of those who died on 9/11 were grieving, many others were recognizing and realizing the complexities and risks of those in public safety. A profession that was already held in high regard was taken to even greater heights.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">In my opinion, it is denigrating and disrespectful to even consider an &ldquo;upside&rdquo; to this tragedy, because there should be no mistake that this act of war was perpetrated on a country with a rich heritage of helping the rest of the world for nothing more than humanitarianism. No upside; no takeaways; simply people helping people.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">But, one &ldquo;upside&rdquo; discussed in several articles on the subject was the new-found elevated stature of public safety employees.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I guess what I am trying to say is that I have seen 9/11 used as a &ldquo;marketing&rdquo; tool and I think that&rsquo;s wrong. It is my opinion and there are those who will disagree with me. That&rsquo;s cool.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I believe that our &ldquo;fall from grace&rdquo; is due to over exposure; too many pictures and video clips of public servants &ldquo;just doin&rsquo; their jobs&rdquo; as they would say. The public face is one of compassion, commitment, strength, honor and courage. It is a reminder of why communities could sleep easy at night. THEY are fearless because their public servants are fearless in protecting them. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">And at the time, the cost for that protection didn&rsquo;t seem to matter. No one seemed to care. Very few participated in their participatory form of government, so unless the very few were very vocal or worked for the newspaper and felt that public payroll issues were &ldquo;newsworthy&rdquo;, then it was regarded as budget expenditures?no big deal! </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">That seems innocuous enough, but then, the economic bubble burst.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Cities and states began &ldquo;skipping&rdquo; their payments to the pensions, mistakenly believing that their financial house would improve and the money would be paid into the pension fund at some point. And the money that WAS getting into the pension funds and then into investment funds were taking a beating along with the rest of us who had retirement funds.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">With less money coming into the cities, states and yes, the unions; no one was doing anything to rein in spending. Their &ldquo;economic engines&rdquo; weren&rsquo;t very &ldquo;fuel efficient&rdquo;!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">So; with regards to what I have seen with fire departments: taxpayers believe that they are paying taxes that are too high. They won&rsquo;t say that they are being assessed a fair cost for services; they only know that it costs too much in their opinions. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">All of a sudden, benefits and pensions are &ldquo;Cadillac&rdquo; plans. Illinois firefighters contribute 9.5% of their paycheck into their pension. What I don&rsquo;t know is what is contributed by their &ldquo;employer&rdquo;. But in the end, the firefighter is to get somewhere around 85% at retirement. It will vary because there are five public employee pensions that are governed by five different pension boards and that could be lending to the problem. That is; Illinois wasn&rsquo;t paying its agreed-upon contributions; yet nothing was popping up as a cause for concern. It&rsquo;s also an example of how close state government-i.e. representatives-have gotten to public and private sector unions. Who was the union listening to while payments were being skipped? The people that they supported for election/re-election; that&rsquo;s who.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">If you listen to Illinois Republicans on the most recent legislative session; they are the only ones trying to reduce spending. They want legislators to &ldquo;be honest with their constituents&rdquo; and to tell them that the money isn&rsquo;t there to spend. So; has the process lacked honesty, if they are now calling for honesty? </span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">It&rsquo;s interesting to note that, when THEY had the majority AND a Republican governor, THEY weren&rsquo;t that interested in spending cuts. Oh wait; they would want to pull out the &ldquo;we had a surplus back then&rdquo; argument. Really? My taxes didn&rsquo;t go down.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">NOW; everyone in government and their lobbyists on a leash claims that they have seen this coming for YEARS. So; I guess that they are complicit after-all.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Anyone with a stake in this can shoulder some of the blame. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">From governments not honoring their commitments to an apathetic/disengaged electorate to unions feeding their own bureaucracy; the once rosy picture is now a harsh reality.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">No one should be shouted down for raising questions or for voicing opinions.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Solutions may very well be found during very heated exchanges.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Hopefully, if the debate remains respectful, consensus will build and communities will flourish once again.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Regardless; you have the right to remain salient!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin-bottom: 6.0pt;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="line-height: 115%; margin-bottom: 10.0pt;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The views and opinions expressed are those of the author, Art Goodrich, who also writes under the name ChiefReason.&nbsp; They do not reflect the views and opinions of </span></b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; line-height: 115%;"><a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">www.fireengineering.com</span></b></a></span><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. Articles written by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form.</span></b></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-1599465429100511503?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-15994654291005115032011-06-02T22:47:00.000Z2012-02-02T15:27:12.020ZMany Died For Your Three Day Weekendnoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: left;"><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-r7LMOTtrdUs/Td-l-78xqpI/AAAAAAAAADE/8_3k0IhnhHs/s1600/img510.jpg" imageanchor="1" style="margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;"><img border="0" height="320" src="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-r7LMOTtrdUs/Td-l-78xqpI/AAAAAAAAADE/8_3k0IhnhHs/s320/img510.jpg" width="214" /></a></div><div align="center" class="MsoNormal" style="text-align: center;"><b><u><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"><br /></span></u></b></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;"><b>Blogger Note: My dad, Staff Sgt. Walter (Gotch) Goodrich is standing in the middle of the back row.</b> </span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">I must admit that I have been a selfish pig when it comes to Memorial Day weekend. I have been so consumed by HOW I was going to spend it that I forgot the REASON. Did you?</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">When I was a young boy, I was in the Cub Scouts. Every year on the Saturday that preceded Memorial Day, we were tasked with placing the small flags on the graves of the military veterans at our community’s cemetery. We didn’t want to miss anyone. It was breath-taking to see, once it was done.</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">The reason that we placed a flag on every veteran’s grave is because we didn’t know who had or hadn’t died while serving our country.</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">After all: Memorial Day is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation’s service. Formerly, it had been called Decoration Day, because the graves of soldiers who had died in service to our country were decorated to honor them.</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">According to </span><a href="http://www.usmemorialday.org/"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">www.usmemorialday.org</span></a><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">, Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on May 5, 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic. It was first observed on May 30, 1868. Flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">So, in the beginning, Memorial Day was to honor those who fought and died in the Civil War. Sometime after World War I, the observance was changed to honor Americans who died fighting in any war.</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">Memorial Day is now recognized in almost every state-though I don’t know which state (s) doesn’t (I’m guessing Georgia)-on the last Monday in May (National Holiday Act of 1971; P.L. 90-363) and established the “three-day weekend” for federal employees. As you can see, the “official” date of Memorial Day is May 30, but the observance day is the last Monday in May. So, in 2012, it will fall on May 28; in 2013, it will be on May 27 and so forth.</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">&nbsp;There are many who would like to see us go back to observing Memorial Day on May 30<sup>th</sup> because the meaning of the day has been lost on planning for the long weekend. Think about it; are we thinking about the sacrifices of our soldiers over the years as the cars whip around the track at the Indy 500 or the Coca Cola 600? Are we so worried about the menu for our cook-out that we forget our fallen soldiers on the one day that we are supposed to remember?</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">And, I can understand why we eventually extended the observance to include ALL American soldiers&nbsp; in service to our country, but when did we decide to include not only soldiers-living or dead-but everyone in service to our country AND public safety?</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">Forgive me, but I am old school and somewhat a traditionalist. It seems like we aspire to be an all-inclusive society and having suffered from the trauma of not being picked when sides were chosen on the playground, I can understand to a point.</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">I am not going to tell anyone how they should feel or how they should observe Memorial Day. See; I can’t even refer to it as a “holiday”, because I don’t believe that having a moment of silence or flying flags at half-staff on a day of remembrance is a “holiday”.</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">If you want to participate in a traditional observance of Memorial Day, then you will want to recognize the red poppy as a symbol of that day, observe a moment of silence at 3:00 pm and fly the American flag at half-staff from dusk to noon. You can fill the rest of the day with however you see fit.</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">We can choose from an array of other “holidays” to lengthen our weekend. And honestly; there are other days in a calendar year to recognize ALL military personnel who serve. I won’t argue that we shouldn’t honor them, but the focus should be on the American soldiers who died fighting to defend freedom. Let’s get back to honoring those who gave the ultimate sacrifice in service to their country.</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">My father was a veteran of both the European and Pacific theaters of World War II. My mother was the dutiful World War II bride and mother to three small children at the time. Both survived the war, but are no longer here. I will visit their grave and most likely, I will read from Dad’s military-issued Bible; maybe something from the Book of John or Psalms.</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">And I will think of Johnny Kellett, who rode with us to school while growing up, but who died in Vietnam. He looked just like a young Sal Mineo. I can still see Johnny’s face. Johnny had a habit of slamming the car door very hard when he got out and whenever one of us kids would slam the car door too hard, Dad would say “Why don’t you slam the door there, Johnny?” Yeah; you don’t forget things like that.</span></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">One of my favorite poems is one by Kelly Strong that is entitled “Freedom Is Not Free”. It reads: </span></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><br /></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>I watched the flag pass by one day.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>It fluttered in the breeze.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>A young Marine saluted it,</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>And then he stood at ease.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>I looked at him in uniform</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>So young, so tall, so proud,</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>He’d stand out in any crowd.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>I thought how many men like him</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>Had fallen through the years.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>How many died on foreign soil?</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>How many mothers’ tears?</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>How many pilots’ planes shot down?</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>How many died at sea?</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>How many foxholes were soldiers’ graves?</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>No, freedom isn’t free.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><br /></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>I heard the sound of TAPS one night, </i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>When everything was still</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>I listened to the bugler play</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>And felt a sudden chill.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>I wondered just how many times</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>That TAPS had meant “Amen,”</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>When a flag had draped a coffin</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>Of a brother or a friend.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>I thought of all the children, </i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>Of the mothers and the wives,</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>Of fathers, sons and husbands</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>With interrupted lives.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>I thought about a graveyard</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>At the bottom of the sea</i></span></div><div class="MsoNoSpacing"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>Of unmarked graves in Arlington.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;"><i>No, freedom isn’t free</i>.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;">Reverend Aaron Kilbourn said, “The dead soldier’s silence sings our national anthem”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;">And never more loudly than on this Memorial Day.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-size: small;">TCSS.</span></div><span style="font-size: small;"><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of </span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; line-height: 115%;"><a href="http://www.blogger.com/post-edit.g?blogID=5993456438748855454&amp;postID=8175416959815498750"><b>www.fireengineering.com</b></a><b>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.</b></span></span><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-8175416959815498750?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-81754169598154987502011-05-27T13:29:00.000Z2011-11-09T21:32:12.071ZJob Interviews-Articulating Introspectionnoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">I used to sit on the sidelines and watch discussions that centered on the interview portion of the hiring process for firefighters and wonder what was so problematic.</span> <br /><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">After-all; at my last three jobs, I was hired based upon the strength of my resume. There was no grueling grilling; just a few questions for clarification.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">But now, I can say that I am not fond of job interviews and it is for one, simple reason: I don’t do well at them.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">As my title indicates; during this phase of the hiring process, you are asked by the “interviewer” to reach inside and to share experiences that might translate to a synergy between you and the person who will ultimately decide if you are hired.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">And it is here that the process differs from that of a firefighter. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">A firefighter has a better than average chance at interview, because they are being interviewed by someone who is familiar with the job requirements. You can’t BS your way through an interview.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">But in my experiences in the private sector, you might get a Human Resources assistant, manager, vice-president, a combination of the three, a plant manager or the guy who cleans the toilets. I have been interviewed by one and also by as many as five at one time. You just never know what to expect. The problem is that they all lack the intimate knowledge to understand good risk management. They just know that they are having too many accidents and insurance premiums are too high and the owner wants to see it improved. So; they all go off of a “cheat sheet” of questions that Fred Pryor or Zig Ziglar handed out to them at the last seminar.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">I have been employed as a risk manager by the same company for the past ten years. I have benefitted greatly from this relationship, because we provide third party support to a manufacturing client. It is no exaggeration when I say that I have touched every aspect of a risk management environment. It has literally put me at the top of my game.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Unfortunately, our client is moving their assembly operation to a southern state and I have elected NOT to move, so I am conducting a job search in an area where I have lived my entire 58 years.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">As my first step towards my job search, I spent $2300 to complete a certification program in my chosen field that I felt would add strength to my resume. I felt that having this certification would at least get me in the door of companies requiring as a minimum, a college degree. It is interesting to note that most companies who want a college degree don’t necessarily want the degree to be in safety and health. I guess that employers equate a college degree with one’s intelligence level.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Then, I updated my cover letter and resume with the help of a job coach from the local college.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Understanding the velocity and reach of social media, I registered with Monster.com and I was already a member of LinkedIn.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">To date, I have answered six ads for a safety-related position and have interviewed for two of them.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Here is where you should buckle up, because this is where my rant will begin.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">I mentioned earlier that I am 58 years old. I have been a practicing member of the ASSE since 1997. I have taken numerous continuing education courses to stay current in the ever-changing world of risk management.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">When you couple my real world experience with my formal safety education, I am confident that I can enhance any company’s safety performance.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">But, apparently, I struggle to clearly articulate that during my interviews.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">In my first interview, we talked for one hour about general topics. I scored well enough to schedule a second interview with them, but for the second interview, they wanted me to take a profile test and to prepare a 10-minute PowerPoint presentation on developing and implementing a strategic plan to improve their safety program. I would present this plan to the company president, vice-president and human resources manager.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">So that you understand my dilemma; they wanted a 10-minute fix for their failing safety program.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Well, I spent a week packing as much power and detail that I could into a 10-minute presentation. I re-wrote it three times, tweaked it, rehearsed it, timed it, tweaked it some more, until I thought I had the perfect 10-minute strategic plan. I even printed off copies of the slide presentation, in case there was an equipment failure.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">I gave them copies of the slides at the beginning of my interview. I presented, answered all of their questions, spoke privately with the company president and walked out of there believing that I had nailed it.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">On Monday of the following week, I received an email-a frickin’ EMAIL-telling me that they “went in a different direction”. <i style="mso-bidi-font-style: normal;">Yeah; they hired someone a lot cheaper than me to implement MY strategic plan!</i> I won’t make that mistake again!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">I have been taught to “dress” for the interview. I believe that, unless the prospective employer states it, you should wear dress slacks and a tie. Shoes should be polished. In my mind; first impressions are still important.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">My next interview was a bomb from the beginning. How do I know? First; I was dressed in my very best dress slacks, white shirt with a killer Jerry Garcia tie and I was met by a guy in a uniform shirt and blue jeans. It may have been casual dress day, but he also seemed very impatient, didn’t allow me to finish the application (“that’s OK; just sign it” he said) and he wanted to know in 500 words or less how I would save the world.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Did I mention that I hate interviews? Did I mention that my contempt for them starts to come out in my replies to some of the questions?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Here’s my problem: most companies deal with safety at a philosophical or abstract level; that is, until the number of accidents and injuries start to add up. They will want to put blame on the “safety coordinator” or blame the fact that they don’t have a safety coordinator. In their mind, they thought that safety was everyone’s responsibility and therefore; everyone would be safe.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">In addition, many companies believe that requiring employees to remove finger rings and to wear safety glasses in their facilities is all they need, but they won’t say anything to the “higher ups” if they don’t follow these two, simple rules. And if the wife/girlfriend of an employee wants to walk into the plant unescorted wearing a tank top, shorts and flip flops; what’s the big deal, right?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Where was I?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Oh yeah; my hatred for interviews.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">I think that part of the reason is that there are all of those questions and I start hearing this voice in my head. I will hear it tell me what I would REALLY like to say and then the other voice telling me what I SHOULD say. Ah; the classic struggle of good vs. evil.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">I don’t like answering hypothetical questions, although I don’t mind asking them!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">The reason that I don’t like them is because I use an “adaptive” approach to providing a safety solution.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">If you are serious about getting to a root cause (s) of your problem (s), then there is certain information that you must share with me, so that I can take my past experience, weigh it against accepted safety norms and then, adapt it to your current situation.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">No; it seems that many companies want to treat risk issues like it’s a plumbing problem, but instead of hiring a plumber, they hire someone who will be the only person working to resolve safety issues. This type of mentality puts you years away from establishing a “culture” of safety.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">Companies fail to recognize the many pieces to the puzzle and though they can’t tell you how they got into the mess, they will micro-manage and resist your efforts to get them out of the mess.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">In other words; they aren’t serious about creating a safety culture. They just want their insurance company and OSHA off of their backs.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">The fire service taught me many skills that I use every day of my life. It strengthened my courage and self-confidence; maybe to my detriment. The fire service also taught me to look closely at origins and causes. It not only taught me about the human condition, but human behavior. That is to say; if you can train people to run into a burning building, you can certainly teach people on how to run out of that same building.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">So, I guess I’ll know when I interview with a company that is serious about their risk control programs…</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">They’ll hire ME!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">The views and opinions expressed are those of the author, <personname w:st="on">Art Goodrich</personname>, who also writes under the name ChiefReason.<span style="mso-spacerun: yes;">&nbsp; </span>They do not reflect the views and opinions of </span></b><a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;"><span style="color: blue;">www.fireengineering.com</span></span></b></a><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;">, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. Articles written by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form.</span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;, &quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt;"></span></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-6825264643993613707?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-68252646439936137072011-05-17T19:24:00.000Z2011-11-09T21:32:12.212ZNegative Pressurenoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Yeah; it is used to suck the smoke and heat from structures, but it’s also used to suck any promise that many future leaders will offer new perstpective to the old hard-line ways of a traditional fire service.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I read on fire discussion boards about concern that the “old guard” isn’t passing it down to the new guard. Along with that come complaints that the new guard isn’t interested in old stuff. They want new stuff; that is, unless it deals with the same old approach to firefighting.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">There is a subculture in the fire service who believes that, since firefighting isn’t an exact science, then it isn’t right to exact a strategy that calculates risk instead of just taking them. I think that there is this fear that, if we contemplate it for too long, we will be overcome by fear and a decision-risky or not-will not be made.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">The fact that some departments operate differently from others is simply the opinions of those who are willing to express them. Typically, they say that it’s wrong, because it clashes with THEIR ethos.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Think about this; why would you care about what someone whom you have never met and never worked with has to say about your department’s tactics? You can be anything that you want to be in cyberspace. Validation DOES NOT come from some internet chat group; it comes from the men and women in your area that train together and respond together for any number of emergencies. They don’t have a book deal or are on the lecture circuit. They are people who are absent of ego and they don’t succeed at someone else’s expense. They don’t have an agenda, other than a training agenda.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I found out some time ago that the <i>internet fire service</i> has its bullies; much like our schools and local taverns. Before you know it; you are catching it from all sides by others in service to their communities. A mob mentality takes over. With so many telling you that you are full of crap, you tend to believe it.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Hey; that picture of a DEAD bin Laden that I saw on the internet was REAL; right?</span></i><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;"></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">You become so pre-occupied by the pronouncements of these pyro-wizards that you lose your personal perspective and along with it your identity.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Negative pressure from your “peers” can cause us to make bad decisions.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I will only take advice or training from people that I know and trust of which there are several.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">You have to ask yourself: do you want to be impressed or do you want to be taught? Many good instructors will make it clear from the beginning that their heart and mind is in the right place. They will limit their words so as not to confuse. They will be positive. They won’t suck the air out of the room to fill their puffed out chests or egos.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Their websites/blogs will be insightful, informative and intrinsically invaluable.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">They have taken what they have learned and put their thumb-print on it. The skill set is what it is, but they are looking for more effective teaching methods. They don’t want to mess with the message; just the delivery.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">There are too many out there willing to shake and bake their leather lid to accelerate their ascent.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">They believe that their crusty lid is in direct proportion to the respect that is enjoyed by a crusty jake.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">They want to climb down from their little soapbox and climb up to the big podium, even though their experience doesn’t pass the smell test.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Thermal insult?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Hell; they think that an all out thermal assault is the true test of a firefighters’ mettle.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">They wear their “I survived the back draft simulator” T-shirt with pride.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">So, are these “legends in their own minds” making the fire service better?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Or are they forcing us to pay them attention while diverting our attention away from more pressing matters?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">What could be more important than ferreting out the wannabees and pretenders from the hallowed halls of our legion of mercurial mentors?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">There is no question about it; I question their motives, their skills and their commitment to our fire service. Their certificate says that they are qualified to instruct, but it doesn’t say that they are CAPABLE.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Don’t let their negative pressure cause you to make poor decisions.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">YOU have to make decisions based upon the intel that you gain at the scene. Many of us love to read about and discuss incidents that have occurred and offer critical insights of the successes or failures. Your closeness to the incident allows you a different vantage point than of those who weren’t there. However; each CAN offer perspective to a discussion. The “you weren’t there so you can’t say anything” argument doesn’t flush with me.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Because the lightweight-constructed structure was under heavy fire-load upon arrival, you couldn’t do a primary search, but did do a defensive search. In the eyes of the internet elites, you didn’t risk enough, so now, they must question your heart; even though they have done the same and have yet to perform a rescue, except in their dreams.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">They have built their reputation from bravado; not bravery. They will punctuate their statements with “I, me and mine” to let you know that they are the most important person in the room.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">But, it all gets them noticed. It does widen their audience. It creates more opportunities for them to spread a message that is short on substance, but long on lip service. They borrow and steal from others’ hard work to pass it off as their own and without it; they wouldn’t make a pimple on the butt of a good instructor.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Hey; they can TALK a good game.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">Before you buy into and adopt their mantra, ethos or philosophy, know what you’re getting. It truly is “buyer beware”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">I’m positive that it’s negatively affecting us.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">TCSS.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">The views and opinions expressed are those of the author, Art Goodrich, who also writes under the name ChiefReason.&nbsp; They do not reflect the views and opinions of </span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; font-size: 12pt;"><a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/"><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">www.fireengineering.com</span></b></a></span><b><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt;">, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. Articles written by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form.</span></b><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-1856390855656750204?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-18563908556567502042011-05-11T19:32:00.000Z2011-11-09T21:32:12.305ZConflict Resolution – LEO vs. FDnoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Well, everything was just dandy until our long time village police chief retired.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Not only did our fire department get along with Jim, but many of us had developed a real friendship with him.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The irony of this dust up between our fire chief and the new police chief is that we have terrific relationships with our county sheriff’s department and our state police.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Here is the situation that was described to me:</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Our fire department was dispatched to a vehicle accident on the interstate.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Rescue 1 and Engine 2 was on their way to the scene on the 2-lane highway that leads to the interstate when our village police chief in his squad car passes both fire trucks in a no passing zone near a blind intersection and a motorist had to pull off of the road to avoid what could have been a head-on collision with our village cop.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">All of the firefighters who witnessed this near miss agreed that it could have been very bad.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Our fire chief attempted to speak with the police chief about the matter, but got nowhere, as the police chief felt he did nothing wrong.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">So, I called the mayor to give him the professional courtesy of informing him that the fire chief and I would attend the next village board meeting to get this matter resolved. The mayor was naturally concerned, because he knows that I can be difficult to deal with at times. And yes; this will be one of those times.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">First of all, I am very aware that the law is on the side of the police officer. An LEO can literally ignore the entire Illinois Motor Vehicle Code, if they are responding to an emergency. I researched it and consulted with a good friend who was a cop for 38 years. Though he agrees that our village cop was stupid, the law permits him to pass in a no passing zone at a blind intersection, unless it causes an accident. Then, the officer could be cited for improper lane usage, failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident or reckless driving.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Did you catch that? A police officer can take all of these risks by violating the rules of the road UNLESS it causes a problem. How screwed up is that? </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">And if, God forbid, a fatality occurs; imagine the magnitude of the lawsuit that is sure to come.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I want this risky behavior stopped NOW; BEFORE it becomes a more serious problem. I don’t think that I am being difficult or unreasonable. The damage would be far-reaching if this type of driving ends in an accident with another village resident.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">If I am writing the risk portion of the insurance policy for our village, knowing that people on the village payroll drives like what has been described, then I would want a blank check. In essence, you could not afford the insurance premium or carry enough in your umbrella coverage to cover this type of behavior.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">So, ultimately; taxpayers pay!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Simply put: a rescuer cannot rescue if THEY need rescued!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I want to rescue this now before an innocent life is taken by someone who is brain dead to common sense.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I would be interested to hear your thoughts.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">TCSS.</span></div><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The views and opinions expressed are those of the author, Art Goodrich, who also writes under the name ChiefReason.&nbsp; They do not reflect the views and opinions of </span></b><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 11pt; line-height: 115%;"><a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/"><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">www.fireengineering.com</span></b></a></span><b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal;"><span style="font-family: Arial; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. Articles written by the author are protected by federal copyright and cannot be reproduced in any form.</span></b><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-1322830097295833780?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-13228300972958337802011-05-09T23:35:00.000Z2011-11-09T21:32:12.461ZIf We Can Find bin Laden, Then Why Can’t We…noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Like most other red, white and blue-blooded Americans, I savored the news that Osama bin Laden had been found and shot dead by a U.S. SEALs Team.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Blogger Sidebar: Has anyone else noticed that the mainstream media has been spelling “Osama” with a “U” instead of an “O”? I think you know why.</span></b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I have no doubt that bin Laden is dead. I have no reason to question the validity of our President’s claim. Therefore; I need no other “verification”, but I would view the “official” photos of a dead bin Laden, if given the opportunity.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Let Cindy Sheehan and the other nut jobs perpetuate the conspiracy theories. The rest of us should briefly rejoice and then get back to keeping our guard up and supporting our government and our troops, as we continue our war on terrorism.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">But, I have to wonder; if we can find bin Laden, then why can’t we find common ground at the center of a myriad of issues?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">When you think of all of the information that was processed; all of the planning required and all of the practice needed to drop our men on the “head of a pin” at precisely the right moment, in order to confront and kill bin Laden, then fixing our federal government doesn’t seem like such an arduous task.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I am sure that the members of our SEALs Team came from different social, ethnic, religious or even political backgrounds, but all of that was compartmentalized, so that they could focus on the plan/the mission.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Imagine what would happen if our military-though, at the mercy of bureaucrats for funding-behaved like our federal government behaves: nothing would get done, each would be blaming the other and we would be the laughingstock to the rest of the world.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">But, fear not; our nation’s fire service isn’t far behind with their inability to find common ground on important issues as well.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">We can find bin Laden, but our fire service can’t find agreement on what the top issues are.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">First and foremost; I believe some of the separation is due in part to the number of trade magazines, editors, writers, bloggers and the many different agendas that are being saturated by very personal opinions.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Yes; that includes me. I don’t pretend to be an <i>Everyman</i>. My opinions are mine and I don’t necessarily look for agreement; I look for “diversity in opinion”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The trades and their websites all run the same top stories (competition is brutal for who gets the story up FIRST), videos and pictures, but the similarities stop there. From website layout to cash layout; they become very different, in terms of content.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I believe that the nation’s fire service organizations are driven by the opinions of the people who populate the various committees, in much the same way that Congress operates.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">In other words; our special interests group (national fire service) is being influenced by special interests groups that drive us further away from common ground and a general consensus.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The priorities identified at the national level often miss the smaller targets of local fire departments. I will use residential sprinklers as an example.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I think that it’s a great idea and a worthy project to push for a nation-wide initiative, but why would a small department struggling to keep fuel in their 30 year-old fire engine that is housed in their dilapidated, mold-infested, asbestos-lined fire station even SEE sprinklers as a blip on their radar screens?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Everyone Goes Home®?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Well, some in the fire service believes that some won’t. Some believe that firefighting, by its very nature, requires us to accept that firefighters will die in the performance of the job, so the program is a lie and a failure. I don’t believe that, but unfortunately others do. They embrace the notion that there is acceptable risk and acceptable deaths, because “that is what we do”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">We can find bin Laden, but we can’t find agreement on when to do a primary search and when it is too dangerous to do so. We can’t agree on what abandoned/vacant, tenable/untenable or even what “risk a lot to save a lot; risk little to save little” means anymore. The measure of success or failure is not that someone has been seriously injured or killed, but rather, how much risk was your department willing to take; regardless of outcome? And anything less is considered an exercise in “yard breathing”. The problem as I see it is that many of us who have worked some tough scenes won’t accept or understand someone else reacting differently to a similar set of circumstances. We are expecting the new breed to be JUST LIKE US and we are disappointed when they aren’t. They don’t have the heart or at least the same heart as we do. We want THEM to look in the mirror and see US.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">We can find bin Laden, but some firefighters can’t find enough common sense to drive to an incident scene in a careful, safe manner. Whether it’s in a personal vehicle (POV) or apparatus, we still have some who believe that getting there as fast as they can without due regard is acceptable. And we can’t agree on the “honors” paid to that firefighter, who dies while recklessly putting the public at risk, because there is this twisted notion that the driving public should ALWAYS yield to the big, red fire truck! Remember that last year, a firefighter returning from a fire school was drag racing with another car and caused a wreck in which an innocent motorist and the driver that was drag racing were killed. The firefighter was given LODD status. Shameful. Yeah; some of us don’t agree on that either.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">We can find bin Laden, but we can’t find agreement on reducing LODDs and especially deaths from heart attacks. We want to believe that they are caused from the thermal pounding that we take at a fire.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Yes; that would account for maybe 2% of the LODD heart attacks, but that doesn’t explain the other 98% that have an undetected, congenital heart problem, because we can’t agree that pre-employment or yearly physicals thereafter should be required (again; see “fueling 30 year-old fire engine); or high blood pressure that goes untreated; or obesity to borderline morbid to morbid obesity, because of poor diet choices and eating habits, coupled with a sedentary life-style. We can’t agree on healthy diets, because of the many different diet plans that are pushed by big, corporate money.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">We can find bin Laden, but we can’t find unity of career and volunteer.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">That leads to disagreements on what constitutes professionalism and builds, then nurtures, mutual respect. We argue about “purity of heart” and other “why we do what we do” issues. We can’t even find common ground on common issues, such as 360 size up or ventilation or nozzle types.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">We can find bin Laden, but we can’t find objective and open-minded thought on the state of our local economies and our pension systems. In the minds of the public sector employees, their wage and benefits package has been a matter of public record, but in the minds of their taxpayers, the details have been buried in the language of their union contract and out of the public eye.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">It’s one thing to read that a city employee will make a salary of X and the rest of the employee benefits package, including pension, is described in ambiguous terms. <i>Employee will receive medical, dental and vision coverage and city will contribute to employee pension </i>does not tell you what that costs.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">So; we can find bin Laden, but we can’t find two people who agree on what is fair for public employees during an economic downturn or local fiscal crisis. The divide between career and volunteer firefighters gets wider, because cities start talking about replacing career with volunteer or paid on call personnel. In cities with career departments, the unions representing the career firefighters will unleash a torrent of public relations tools to bolster the needs for a career department.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Ironically, there is no talk of replacing street and sanitation workers or police with volunteers; only the fire department. Appeals from the career guys will go out to their volunteer “brothers”, who were, moments earlier, “scabs” to resist being used in this manner-a scare tactic pitting “brother against brother”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Yep; we can find bin Laden, but finding unity among the factions in our fire service will remain elusive for now.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">But, if we want to continue to draw comparisons between the military and the fire service, then we need to adopt philosophy, in addition to the strengthening programs.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">That way; firefighters with very diverse backgrounds will come together and work with the same plans to accomplish each mission.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">That’s how I see it, anyway.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">TCSS.</span></div><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of </span></b><a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/"><span style="font-family: &quot;Calibri&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 11pt; line-height: 115%;"><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">www.fireengineering.com</span></b></span></a><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or my dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.</span></b><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-1239874270828602688?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-12398742708286026882011-05-04T20:07:00.000Z2011-11-09T21:32:12.570ZAirport 2011noemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Blogger Note: Airport the movie appeared in theaters in 1970 and starred Burt Lancaster, Dean Martin and Jean Seberg. The sequel, Airport 1975 is probably more memorable of the two movies. The sequel starred Charlton Heston, Karen Black and George Kennedy.</span></b><br /><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Ask anybody. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Stuff happens to me.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Whether it’s to the store or to another state; every trip is always an epic adventure for me.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I never have a travel itinerary; I have places where I have to be and it’s a given that I will get lost getting there.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">This story starts off at the ticket counter at General Wayne Downing Peoria International Airport. Destination; New Braunfels, Texas, where my home base for one week would be the Hilton Garden Inn.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I checked my suitcase-25 bucks please. I had my carry on; my computer back pack.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I got to TSA Central, took my computer out of the case, took everything out of my pockets, took off my belt, shoes, wristwatch and wouldn’t you know it; I still tripped the scanner.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I told the security crew that I had titanium knee joints, as they prepared to scan me with the hand wand.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I said, “You’re going to wind up patting me down&nbsp; anyway, so why don’t we just skip the wand?”</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Somehow, I think what they heard was <i>I have a bomb.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><i><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">No, no; I am not trying to tell you how to do your job. I was merely suggesting a ‘time-saver’. You just do what you need to do!</span></i><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;"></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">At that point, I think they called downstairs to have my suitcase searched. I’ll explain later.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">So, after they ran the hand wand over every inch of me; and yes, my knees triggered the alarm, so they put me in the pat down area, where George the Hand Model met me with a smile. Did I mention that “Deliverance” has been showing on AMC?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Well, I must have gotten the only agent in the entire airport who had been to my home town and eaten at the old truck stop. He must have thought that he had broken the ice and invited me to a “private” pat down room.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I said, “I don’t know you well enough and besides; I am not that modest because I played team sports and took team showers. Carry on!”</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Personally, I thought that he got a little too personal when he went “high on the inside of my thighs” as he described it. I would describe it as “Pat Meets Mr. Happy”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Anyway, I collected my thoughts and my stuff and proceeded to Gate 3.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">We had no sooner been shoe-horned into our small jet and severe weather kept us on the tarmac for 40 additional minutes. That wasn’t bad by itself, but my “traveling companion” was a first time flyer; so much so that he didn’t know his ticket had his seat number on it! He got booted out of three other seats before he landed next to me and sure enough; he was 8B to my 8C. Oh joy!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I had my ear buds in listening to music and I was reading a book. Check that; I was TRYING to listen to music and to read my book, but Mr. Nervous First Time Flyer wanted to talk. As proof, my left ear was injured from removing my ear bud multiple times to answer questions like, “Where you going?” Answer: “Same place as you; Minneapolis”. He freaked out and said, “I thought this plane was going to Dallas/Fort Worth?” Answer: “It is” and I put my ear bud back in!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">“You got a bike?” Answer: “Yes and I also have a motorcycle”. Apparently, there are people who wear Harley Davidson apparel who don’t actually have one!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">This was a two hour flight and he got up and went to the rest room THREE times. After the third time, he came back to his seat and said, “The rest room is a busy place today”, to which I replied, “I noticed that”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">At Dallas/Fort Worth, I had a 90 minute layover for a flight to San Antonio.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">As we were boarding, a nasty storm blew in. A funnel cloud had been sighted and torrential rain was falling. Lightning was striking near us. But, that wasn’t the worst part.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The worst part was that, as we boarded the plane, we were met by a putrid odor. Someone in the first class section of the plane had passed a foul gas that had passengers holding their noses. I had to consume an entire box of Tic Tacs to get the taste out of my mouth. WOW!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I was seated next to a female who had obviously flown before. She kept to her side, didn’t fight me for the armrest and kept to herself. Funny; but I would have willingly talked to her if only…</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Then, it happened!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">A couple with a very young baby sat down directly in front of me. Now; for the record, I love babies; babies that coo and make gurgly sounds.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">But this baby was clearly upset with its flying experience, was crying and flailing like a ninja warrior and then something even worse happened. We had a lightning strike. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">For those of you who don’t know, a pilot cannot take off until 20 minutes have passed since the last lightning strike. In fact; the pilot came over the PA and explained it to us. I checked my watch.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">At 19 frickin’ minutes, you guessed it; another lightning strike.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">By now, if you have followed my blogs, you may get a sense for why I’m so cynical.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I’m not that crazy about flying to begin with, Texas has been drier that a popcorn fart (a term used by my dad, may he rest in peace) and on the day that I am sitting on the tarmac at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport, we get a severe thunderstorm. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Is it me?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Anyway, we get in the air by some miracle and the baby in front of me is still not happy.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">So, I turned up my music. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Then, Mom got a “privacy blanket” and I could hear the baby sucking over Rev Theory-Justice. At least baby was no longer crying and flailing and Dad was enjoying his “in-flight movie”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">When we landed at San Antonio, we were told to claim our luggage at C-2. Like a herd of cattle, we all went to C-2, where we waited…and waited.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Then, C-3 started spitting out luggage and I saw my suitcase from my vantage point. I didn’t want a stampede, so I broke off from the herd ever so discreetly, but a panic ensued. You could almost hear those sick bastard baggage handlers laughing at our expense.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">My boss, to add an element of danger to this adventure, arranged for a rental car. I was to get this car, get out of the airport and to my motel, some 20 miles from San Antonio&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Now; if I had continued south, I would have been in Mexico before I realized my mistake.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The good news is that I found a very cool Harley Davidson dealer-Alamo City Harley Davidson. They have a big spur outside of their store, which is HUGE.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">After I did my shopping, I reversed directions and got to my hotel by pure accident.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I got to my room and discovered that my suitcase had been searched.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">How do I know?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Because the idiot in me packed a metal cigar case full of cigars. I put it on the very bottom and under my underwear. When I opened the suitcase, the cigars were on top of my shirts.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">And they weren’t gentle. They tore the inside flap, broke my nametag and broke my razor, which I managed to cut my thumb on as I pulled the pieces out of my suitcase.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Texas factoid; daytime speed limit is 70 but you can only go 65 at night on the same road.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I also had FRIED PICKLES for the first time. Yum!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I still have to get home.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">God willing…</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.blogger.com/www.fireengineering.com">www.fireengineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or my dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.</span></b></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-6483820962567702575?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-64838209625677025752011-04-27T03:02:00.000Z2011-11-09T21:32:12.695ZFire Engineering Talk Radio Debuts ChiefReasonnoemail@noemail.orgArt Goodrich<div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">My first show with Fire Engineering Talk Radio is, as they say, <i>in the can.</i></span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">If you didn’t have the chance to tune in live on April21, you can go to <a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/index/blogs/fireengineeringtalkradio.html">Fire Engineering Talk Radio</a> and you can listen to the archived version. You can also see the schedule of some excellent upcoming shows.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I am also hearing that shows might be offered as Mp3 downloads in the future.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">As host, I don’t know how well or how badly a show went until I can go back and listen to it for myself. When I say that, what I mean is; did the delivery make it to the audience?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">It’s easy to fix equipment issues, but let’s face it; if there are several seconds of “dead air”, you cannot have a “do-over”, because it’s live! Where it can be fixed is if you prepare it as a download. Then, you can go back with editing and “scrub” it to remove the mistakes. But, a few blemishes add character.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">So, I have to work on eliminating “dead air”.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Then, I have to cut down on my use of “um” and “and uh”! They are said to fill the gaps in my thoughts and it annoys the heck of me when I hear it. The Little Guy In My Head is supposed to be my wingman and he dropped the ball.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The last, technical issue that I have to improve upon is mastering the controls. If I hadn’t had Scott Nelson doing yeoman’s work in that regard, the show would have been very painful for you and me.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I’m going to let you in on a little secret.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Scripted shows with scheduled guests are always going to be high quality for the listeners. Questions and answers will fly back and forth between hosts and guests like a ping pong ball at the Table Tennis World Championships!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I love having guests on that you can basically turn the mike over to and then, I can kick it with the rest of the audience and learn right along with them.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">But…</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I get the biggest buzz out of callers who call in with questions or comments.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Why?</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Because you have no idea where the show will go at that point.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The show that I did on Thursday evening had an international flavor. My first call came from England!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Rob Aiers of <a href="http://www.carbonmonoxidekills.com/">www.carbonmonoxidekills.com</a> called in to talk about carbon monoxide poisoning and how it is reported. We became fast friends. He was very engaging, knowledgeable and passionate about his cause. I was thrilled that he called in, but not in a creepy way.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Bobby Halton called in. Bobby is quite simple a walking/talking SET of encyclopedias. If you don’t learn something from him, then you weren’t paying attention. He is very humble and one of the most unpretentious individuals that I know. Keep your eye on him. I predict great things for him.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">DaGonz called me. An old friend, he is. Otherwise known as Ron Ayotte; I own him plenty. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">For those of you who don’t know the story, Ron is the founding father of the <a href="http://www.iacoj.com/">International Association of Crusty Old Jakes</a>. Ron’s dream of a fire site where you could learn from respectful discussion became a reality under his guidance. It was there that I wrote my first of several blogs; only back then, we called them “op-ed” pieces. I honed my debating skills with some of the best minds in the fire service.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">A word of caution, though; never, ever take him on in a game of music trivia; especially in classic rock. Oh and if you want to get on his good side, just tell him that you love Ford Mustangs. And if you have ever heard the fire station referred to as “the puzzle palace”; that is classis Gonzo.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Sippy from Manchester called in to talk about his fire department’s current predicament. He described what can only be called a nightmare, if it comes to pass. In short; his city council is “considering” a plan that was submitted by a former firefighter that will eliminate ALL district chiefs and replace them with captains. Yeah; you reacted just like I did when I heard it. The plan is currently in committee, so stay tuned.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Stephan Charlton called in from Canada to ask about blogging.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">It’s weird, but I have never really broken blogging down to a “process”. There are plenty of people out there who believe that they are “experts” who can tell you how to write a successful blog and in my opinion, it’s a bunch of crap. I don’t want my blog to be like a thousand others. I want it to mean something to me and hopefully, to the reader. I don’t want you to read anything like it anywhere else. </span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Blogging is very personal and anyone willing to bear their soul in their writing for others to read is both unselfish and courageous. READERS decide if you are successful. I don’t do it to sell ad space and I don’t wear a big “B” on my chest. Consider that it’s your personal journal of your personal journeys and thoughts of your next journey that may or may not make a difference to the person who reads it.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">When I blog, I have but one goal and that is to grab one person who thinks about what I write after they’re read it; good or bad. I am not looking for agreement or affirmation from the reader. I want what I write to be like that catchy, little tune that you can’t get out of your head!</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Just like the best player doesn’t always make the best coach; I might not be the best person to give tips on blogging, but I am willing to help anyone who wishes to give blogging a shot.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">I had a blast on my “debut” for <a href="http://www.fireengineering.com/index/blogs/fireengineeringtalkradio.html">Fire Engineering Talk Radio</a>. If you would like to be a guest, email me at <a href="mailto:art.chiefreason.goodrich99@gmail.com">art.chiefreason.goodrich99@gmail.com</a>.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">If you would like to chat with me or just listen, then watch the schedule. We can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">Until next time…</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">TCSS</span></div><div class="MsoNormal"><b><span style="font-family: &quot;Arial&quot;,&quot;sans-serif&quot;; font-size: 10pt; line-height: 115%;">The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of <a href="http://www.blogger.com/post-edit.g?blogID=5993456438748855454&amp;postID=799079502486064188">FireEngineering.com</a>, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or my dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.</span></b></div><div class="MsoNormal"><br /></div><div class="blogger-post-footer"><img width='1' height='1' src='https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/5993456438748855454-799079502486064188?l=art-goodrich.blogspot.com' alt='' /></div>tag:blogger.com,1999:blog-5993456438748855454.post-7990795024860641882011-04-24T03:03:00.000Z2011-11-09T21:32:12.820Z 500

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