Posted by Nick Hrkman | Fire and Rescue, Training
Wednesday, April 16th, 2014 9:04 am

Rolf H. Jensen Memorial grant application for 2015 now available

The Rolf H. Jensen Memorial Public Education Grant is presented annually to a local fire department to support a fire and life safety education community-wide program or campaign.

Application deadline is Friday, February 6, 2015Download the application (PDF, 613 KB).

The Rolf H. Jensen Memorial Public Education Grant provides a $5,000 grant to one local fire department to support a community-wide fire and life safety education program or campaign. Funded by the RJA Group, the grant is open to any fire department (career or volunteer) located in the United States or Canada.


Posted by Francesca Solano | Fire and Rescue, General, Safety, Training
Tuesday, April 15th, 2014 11:04 am

Anti-Ventilation Tactics on the Fireground

By Ed Hartin

For FireRescue

I learned a great deal about firefighting and the fire service from my father, who joined the fire department in 1938 and retired as fire chief in 1975, the year after I started as a career firefighter. However, one of the most relevant lessons for firefighting in the modern built environment I learned from my mother. During the fall and winter months in New England, she would frequently tell me, “Close the door! Were you born in a barn?” She didn’t know it at the time, but this would be useful advice for today’s firefighters.

The 5th edition of Fire Ventilation Practices, published in 1970, stated: “Proper ventilation cannot be accomplished haphazardly, and one cannot rely solely upon knowledge gained from practical experience in actual fire situations, since no two fires are alike. Ventilation, therefore, must be recognized as a technical subject and one much approach the study of ventilation theory and practices from this basic point of view. A fire officer equipped with an understanding of what has taken place in a building and what effect certain optional actions will produce, is much better prepared to assume the responsibility of ventilating a structure.”1

While true in the 1970s, this holds true today. Firefighters must understand the modern fire environment and the effect of firefighting tactics on fire dynamics.

The Modern Fire Environment
Even before current research conducted by the UL’s Firefighter Safety Research Institute  and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), firefighters recognized that the fire environment was changing.

Read more.

Posted by Nick Hrkman | Fire and Rescue, PPE
Monday, April 14th, 2014 9:04 am

For any of you who complain about NFPA

By Michael “Mick Mayers
For Firehouse Zen

We were talking last night on the Weekly Firefighter Hangout about “words that we live by” in the fire service and I was a little surprised not to hear anyone bring up the usual complaints on NFPA and other consensus standards, which seem to get thrown into a big steaming pile together when someone wants to badmouth the fire service.  As a participant in the standards process, I get a little frustrated when people complain about standards. Why, you may ask? Well, because while standards may seem to be prohibiting aspects of our jobs, the fact is, standards are necessary to help us define things, to establish our expectations in regard to a certain item, title, or discipline.


Posted by Nick Hrkman | Fire and Rescue, General, PPE
Wednesday, April 9th, 2014 8:04 am

New report provides an update of current practice and policies for PPE care & maintenance

By Lauren Backstrom
For NFPA Today

Fire fighting personal protective equipment (PPE) is an essential part of the gear used by fire fighters. Like all equipment, fire fighting PPE requires appropriate care and maintenance. The goal of this project was to provide a data collection summary of current practice and policies for fire service PPE care and maintenance, with resulting deliverables that help guide standards revisions as well as to support future research on this topic.

Collection of the data resulted in a recently published report, ”Data Collection Summary for PPE Care and Maintenance” authored by Paul Kashmanian and Casey C. Grant, P.E. of the Fire Protection Research Foundation.

The Fire Protection Research Foundation expresses gratitude to members of the project’s technical panel for their guidance throughout the project and to all others who contributed to this research effort. Special thanks are expressed to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) for providing the project funding through the NFPA Annual Code Fund.

LION’s Karen Lehtonen served on the project’s technical panel. For more PPE Care and Maintenance information, please visit LION Fire Academy for free online training.

Posted by Nick Hrkman | Fire and Rescue, Safety
Monday, April 7th, 2014 9:04 am

Firefighter saves fellow firefighter when roof caves in

From News 3
By  Denise Rosch

NORTH LAS VEGAS (KSNV & MyNews3) — Two North Las Vegas firefighters are back on the job one day after falling through the roof of a burning home.

The City of North Las Vegas Fire Department responded to 3005 St. George Street Thursday afternoon for a reported house fire. The call came in at 2:58 p.m.

Mike Harris and Joe’l Adams are both veterans with the North Las Vegas Fire Department and have worked together about six years.

They were ventilating the fire at the four-plex near Civic Center and Cheyenne when the roof gave way. The men characterized what happened as “a bad day.”

That bad day that ended with a very good outcome, and both men are fine.

When they arrived, fire crews found a single story, multi-family dwelling with smoke visible around the roof. Once crews gained entry into the house they reported heavy smoke and flames in the attic. (more…)

Posted by Nick Hrkman | Fire and Rescue, Training
Friday, April 4th, 2014 9:04 am

Fire Academy Friday: Certified NFPA 1500 training

LION Fire Academy offers free video training for NFPA 1500 certified by Butler Tech that can count toward your Continuing Education credits. Choose from one of the training chapters watch and learn. After each chapter, you will be prompted to take an online test. After you submit your answers, you will be informed if you passed the test. If you didn’t pass, you may take it again. For successful completion of all 12 tests, you will receive a CEU certificate worth three hours of training by email in about a week.

For fire departments that require all members to take the training, please tell us.  We can manage your roster for you or send certificates to your training officer.

Posted by Nick Hrkman | Fire and Rescue, Health
Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014 9:04 am

Boston firefighters offer advice on coping with tragedy

By Bob McGovern
For The Boston Herald

When the horrible news out of Boston struck — “two men down in the line of duty” — firefighters across the state felt the pain.

Five who also lost fellow firefighters in the line of duty gave advice yesterday to those who hold the memories of Lt. Edward J. Walsh and firefighter Michael R. Kennedy close. Here are their stories as told to the Herald’s Bob McGovern:

Fire Chief Michael Hanson

The Lancaster fire chief remembers burying one of his own in 2003, firefighter Martin McNamara, who was killed after a series of explosions in a building.

“The biggest thing they can do is just stay in contact with each other, stay focused and just lean on each other. It’s what we did here in Lancaster. We talked about the good times we had with Marty and the kind of guy he was.

“We all take the job knowing the risk, and we all know that something could happen to any of us. We all just want our brothers and sisters to keep moving ahead if something does happen.

“We’re a very close group, and it’s hard to explain to people. You can travel all the way to California, stop by a fire station, and they’ll treat you like family. It’s like you’ve known each other forever. There’s a strong bond there, and we all carry it with us.” (more…)

Posted by Francesca Solano | Events, Fire and Rescue, General
Tuesday, April 1st, 2014 11:04 am

Tips on how to get more from a fire service tradeshow

By Robert Avsec

For Fire Chief

I first came across the term, “conference commando,” several years ago in a piece by Scott Kirsner in Fast Company magazine entitled “The Conference Commando Field Manual.” Kisner described a conference commando as:

“… people who treat a few days at an industry or professional gathering as a surgical strike that generates value for their company, that helps their career, and that shapes their perspective on the future. These conference commandos live by the guiding principles of an economy built on networks — that whom you know is as important as what you know, and that you have to update what you know by continually encountering new ideas.”

You’re a leader and manager within you’re organization, right? You probably have a “snail mail” in-box at work that’s teetering on collapse, an e-mail in-box that hasn’t been clear since the day it was set up, and more daily “brush fires” than … I get the picture.

So when you have the opportunity to attend a tradeshow to see what’s the “latest and greatest” in apparatus, equipment, and services for the fire and EMS world you want a proper ROMTI (Return on My Time Invested).

And let’s not forget that your organization has got a dog in this fight as well. The cost for registration, airfare, lodging, and meals represents an investment by the organization of at least a couple thousand dollars per person. So your bosses are going to be looking for a good ROTIY (Return on Their Investment in You).

You should have a plan prior to attending one of the major fire and EMS conferences so that you maximize your time. Here are a few of my time-tested techniques for being in the field as a conference commando.

Read more.

Photo credit: FDIC

Posted by Nick Hrkman | Fire and Rescue
Monday, March 31st, 2014 9:03 am

LION hosts two special screenings of BURN: One year on the front lines of the battle to save Detroit

Are you in the Dayton, Ohio region? LION invites all area firefighters and friends to come to THE NEON to see the documentary BURN…’One year on the front lines of the battle to save Detroit. BURN is an award-winning, action-packed film that takes you closer than you’ve ever been, capturing a year in the lives of Detroit firefighters who are charged with the thankless task of saving a city that many have written off as dead.

There will be two screenings: Tuesday April 1st and Wednesday April 2nd. Each screening starts at 7:30 p.m. LION asks that attendees pay a $5 donation at the door. All proceeds go toward the Firefighter Cancer Support Network.

BURN – Official Theatrical Trailer (2013) from BURN on Vimeo.

Here’s some critical response for the film: “Emotional. Memorable. Miraculous.” – THE WASHINGTON POST, “Full of some of the most haunting fire footage around … introducing us to some of the toughest guys in the world.” – NEW YORK MAGAZINE

Posted by Nick Hrkman | Fire and Rescue, Training
Friday, March 28th, 2014 9:03 am

Fire Academy Friday: Free, online training accredited by Butler Tech

LION Fire Academy provides fire department members with online training on PPE and Continuing Education Units for successful completion.  Fire instructors can incorporate PPE education into their classes and have their students earn credits.  If you are a fire student or contemplating a career in firefighting, you’ll find helpful quizzes, videos and links on PPE and other firefighting topics.

NFPA 1851 and NFPA 1500 training modules are valid for any brand of PPE.

If you have suggestions on new training topics, or just have a question, please tell us.