Fire Photographer Spotlight: Ron Jeffers

Fire photographers have been documenting firefighters in all corners of the country. Among those operating in North Jersey is Ron Jeffers, who has been contributing covers and photos to Fire Engineering for almost 40 years.

Check out some of Ron’s cover shots below, and then the links to his more recent work, which mostly chronicles firefighting operations in Bergen and Hudson County in New Jersey.

Ron Jeffers's very first cover on Fire Engineering and a national publication: July, 1977

My very first cover on Fire Engineering and a national publication: July, 1977,” Ron said. “Flames blow out side of a plumbing supply company, and, later, the guys in the bucket of the Secaucus (NJ) snorkel had to duck! Also a job in Union City, and the Union City snorkel was O.S. for work.”

October, 1980 cover of Fire Engineering: Two Newark ladder pipes

October, 1980. “Two Newark (NJ) ladder pipes on heavy fire from vacant commercial building,” said Ron, then added. “Plus, I like Seagrave tillers!”

September 1986. Ron reminisces: “In this pic, the Kearny (NJ) snorkel is being moved as the top floor of bat factory becomes fully involved.”

March 1987 cover to Fire Engineering

March, 1987. “Newark Truck 7 (Seagrave tiller) operating on old commercial building in East Orange. Heavy fire,” Ron said. “One East Orange (NJ) firefighter was killed.”

September 1988 cover of Fire Engineering: The Hackensack Ford fire

The September 1988 cover is from the tragic Hackensack Ford Fire, in which five firefighters were killed when a bowstring truss roof collapsed. Ron also captured the city’s most recent remembrance of these line-of-duty deaths HERE.

June 1989 cover of Fire Engineering

The June 1989 cover is one of Ron’s favorites. “This shows two members retreating down Union City (NJ) 3 Truck’s aerial as flames blew out upper floor windows,” said Ron. “It’s my city and you can see ‘Union City’ on side of the rig. This happened on a day with water pressure problems and a tanker from Jersey City was used.”


Jersey City Deputy Chief Denis Oneal and other firefighters at the scene of a fire.

The August 1990 cover has Jersey City (NJ) Deputy Chief Denis Oneal, who is now the Superintendent of the U.S. National Fire Academy. 

“I was honored by being mentioned in a Thanksgiving editorial one year by Tom Brennan,” Ron said. “He gave thanks to all who helped him with Fire Engineering including photographers like me…He was a good guy.”



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