Vintage USAF Crash Rescue Instructions For Local Responders

For your holiday weekend reading pleasure, a “crash rescue guide” for local responders, prepared by Field Training Detachment 205A at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base. Undated and found in the archives of a local fire department.

Contains information on (a.) telephone numbers for reporting crashes, (b.) types of information to provide when calling, (c.) instructions for assisting injured personnel, (d.) instructions for when injured or deceased military personnel are moved from the scene, (e.) notes on prohibition on release names of deceased personnel, (f.) instructions about security matters and allowing pictures to be taken, and (g.) instructions for safety of civilian population.

 Click to enlarge:

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Swift Water Rescue Teams Leave Raleigh For Texas

Two swift-water rescue teams left Raleigh yesterday, headed to Texas to assist with the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. They were part of a five-team deployment requested by Texas emergency officials. 

Personnel and equipment from NC USAR Task Force 8 and Task Force 9 departed from the Raleigh Fire Department training center, following a 10:00 a.m. press conference that included remarks from Governor Roy Cooper and Mayor Nancy Macfarlane. 

Mike Legeros photos

Personnel and equipment from Chapel Hill and Durham fire departments arrived at the training center after 8:00 a.m. Crews prepared the Task Force 8 vehicles, which included:

  • Two four-door utility trucks/water rescue, pulling trailers with boats and rescue equipment
  • Two pick-ups with camper shells, one pulling a logistics trailer that includes a UTV
  • Box truck/communications unit, pulling a generator, lighting, and antenna trailer.

The Fayetteville team from Task Force 9 arrived around 10:00 a.m., with a similar vehicles and equipment. 

Mike Legeros photos

News media, local officials, and Mr. Blogger also gathered at the training center that morning. They interviewed and photographed the firefighters. Google for news stories. Also search Twitter for stories, pictures, and video. 

See more Legeros photos. Or watch this short clip:

Five Teams From Across The State

The five teams consist of 92 personnel from the following agencies, each part of a larger North Carolina Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) Task Force:

  • Task Force 9 – Fayetteville FD, Fayetteville PD, Cumberland County EMS and Lumberton Rescue & EMS
  • Task Force 8 – Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill fire departments
  • Task Force 6 – Greensboro FD
  • Task Force 3 – Charlotte FD
  • Task Force 2 – Henderson County Emergency Services, Blue Ridge FD, Etowah Horse Shoe FD, Fletcher FD, Henderson County Rescue Squad, Saluda FD, Valley Hill FD

The Greensboro, Charlotte, and Henderson County teams departed from the Charlotte Fire and Police Training Academy, also on Friday morning. 

The five teams are part of the state’s swift-water rescue program, which is organized by North Carolina Emergency Management. There are 30 teams positioned across the state. They meet national standards and can be deployed locally, regionally, or across the country.

Read this NC DPS press release for more background.


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Cherry Point’s New Rescue Pumper

Lee Wilson went to the beach last week, and shot this sweet Rosenbauer rescue pumper at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point in Havelock.

Was just delivered on August 24. It’s a 2017 Rosenbauer Commander, 1500/500 with 20 gallons Class A foam and 30 gallons Class B foam. 

See more pics from Lee, in his album of trip photos. What’s the rest of their fleet comprised of, and how many stations do they have? (Three structural, one ARFF.)

Maybe readers can advise.

Update, September 12 – From reader Trav May via Facebook comment, from the base web site:

“Operations Division – The Operations division is led by two Assistant Chiefs and six Captains. This division consists of all personnel assigned to suppression and associated services. 39 operations personnel are assigned to 7 work groups working a 48 hour on/72 hour off schedule. Each of the workgroups is assigned 6 to 7 personnel manning three fire stations. Minimally two 1250 GPM pumpers and one 1750 pPM 75-ft Quint are each staffed with four personnel daily.”

2017-08-31-mcas1 2017-08-31-mcas2

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Raleigh’s Old Steamer Gets Gong, Passes Boiler Inspection

Last month, Raleigh’s old steam fire engine received some work. A new gong was installed, and the boiler passed its annual state inspection.


The 1905 American LaFrance Metropolitan steam engine was moved to Station 29, and “A” platoon personnel (shown below) assisted Steamer Committee members with its annual state-mandated boiler inspection.

On July 29, a fire was lit, the steam was raised, and the 100+ year-old pumping engine flowed water behind the fire station. Here’s a short video of the test. That’s Captain Mike Ezzell at the controls and ably assisted by Lt. Pat Murphy. They’ve led the restoration and operation of the steamer since the project started in 2011. (See history below.)

Continue reading ‘Raleigh’s Old Steamer Gets Gong, Passes Boiler Inspection’ »

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The Yarborough Hotel Fire – July 3, 1928

From Research Central, here’s a new retrospective. Raleigh’s renowned Yarborough Hotel on Fayetteville Street. Was the social and political center of the city for decades. Burned on July 3, 1928. Brought hundreds to the scene, as well as engines from Durham and Smithfield. 

Posted on the Raleigh Fire Museum web site, the account is pulled primarily from newspaper stories. They’re transcribed in their entirety. Plus other bits and pieces and photos. Oh my.

Read the history


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Rural Fire Protection Origins – Guilford County

How did rural fire protection begin in North Carolina?

That’s been a nagging question for a few years now. We posted this historical perspective from 1977, with excerpts from a state government document. 

But how about some details? What were the developments among individual counties? We’ve asked inputs on our Facebook fire page, in this posting. That’s where a discussion is unfolding. 

And, we’ve got some data to share on Guilford County, and its early rural fire protection history…

Guilford County

Guilford was one of the first counties to address “the problem of rural fire protection.” They started discussions in 1939, pressed their General Assembly reps to introduce legislation, and by the middle of the next decade, had three “community fire departments” operating: Bessemer, Guilford College, and Oak Grove.

Here’s a detailed history by way of the Greensboro Daily News and the Greensboro Record, from 1939 to 1948. Let’s start at the end, with a great recap in a GR story from September 16, 1948. From there, we’ll go back to the beginning.

What happened after 1948, both in Guilford and statewide? To be continued!

Click to enlarge:

Full text:

Guilford College Fire Department Result of Legislative Enabling Act Continue reading ‘Rural Fire Protection Origins – Guilford County’ »

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Raleigh Fire Department Fleet Updates – Summer 2017

Lee Wilson photos

Engines and Ladders and Tillers, Oh My

Raleigh’s new Pierce tiller was placed in service this week, and following a pair of new Pierce pumpers last month. Here’s the scorecard of which rigs went where, and which stations are getting the bumped ones. 

See more of Lee Wilson’s photos on his Flickr Site. Click on Albums for pics of the new Pierce tiller and Pierce engines. Or click the search icon  and use keywords, to search for pictures for older trucks.

See my apparatus register, for earlier histories of each rig. (Site update pending.)


New Ladder 4 (at Station 1)
2017 Pierce Arrow XT tiller – In service 8/17/17.

Old Ladder 4
2010 Pierce Arrow XT tiller – OOS as L4 on 8/17/17. Pending to L8, after maintenance and some repairs.

Ladder 8 (at Station 26)
2006 Pierce Arrow XT platform (011035) – Will go to reserve.

Ladder 129 (reserve)
1999 American LaFrance Eagle platform (011001) – Will move from reserve to training.

Training Ladder
1995 Simon-Duplex/LTI platform (011004) – Will be sold.


New Engine 10
2017 Pierce Enforcer – In service 7/13/17.

Old Engine 10
1998 Pierce Saber (001001)  – Pending to E28.

Engine 28
2004 American LaFrance Eagle (001047) – Pending to training.

New Engine 17
2017 Pierce Enforcer – In service 7/10/17.

Old Engine 17
1998 Pierce Saber (001013) – Pending to E6.

Engine 6
2004 American LaFrance Eagle (001045) – Pending to training.

Training Engines
1989 Pierce Arrow (001018) – To be sold
1990 Pierce Lance (001019) – To be sold


  • The other two 2004 American LaFrance Eagle pumpers are at Station 24 and Station 25. 
  • The third Pierce tiller is at Station 29, a 2015 Pierce Arrow XT as Ladder 9.
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Raleigh Fire Department Facility Project Updates

Let’s start a new, recurring feature. Raleigh Fire Department facility updates. The city is upgrading and expanding numerous fire facilities, and it’s long overdue. Fire stations are being replaced with much larger and more modern facilities, either on the same site (Station 6) or near their current stations (Station 12, 14, 22). Others are being renovated with “down to the walls” projects. There’s also the first “infill” station on the books, Station 30 off Wake Forest Road on Ronald Drive. Here are the assorted statuses. Will update again in three/four/five/six months.

Click to enlarge:


Facility Project Type Project Location Project Notes
Sta 1 Replace Convention Center area Programming complete. Site selection still underway, in area of Convention Center. Funding for multi-year project started in FY18. Combination Station 1 and relocated Headquarters.
Sta 2 Renovate 263 Pecan Road Construction underway. Completion expected in fall. Included renovation of adjoining former shop building. See photos. Read blog.
Sta 3 Replace Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. & Rock Quarry Rd. area Land acquisition underway, on state property near corrections center. Construction funds to be requested in FY19. 
Sta 6 Rebuild 2601 Fairview Road Demolition completed. Site preparation starting. 14 month construction time. See photos. Read blog.
Sta 11 Renovate 2925 Glenridge Road Project re-started, after reduction in scope. Primary focus is expansion of apparatus bay, to accommodate 100-foot ladder truck. Plus complete renovation. Design work starts in August.
Sta 12 Relocate 807 Bus Way Construction underway. Completion expected in late winter. See photos. Read blog.
Sta 14 Relocate Harden Road & Nancy Ann Drive Existing structures to be abated/demolished in August. Building plan permitting in September. Bid estimate in October. Read blog.
Sta 15 Renovate 1815 Spring Forest Road Sprinkler system recently added. Complete renovation starts in 2018, with FY18 funding.[1] See photos.
Sta 22 Relocate 10050 Durant Road New project, on fast-track. Replacement site chosen, city property. Design work starting this month. Construction starting in fall 2018. Read blog.
Sta 23 Relocate Pinecrest Road & Westgate Road area Land acquisition funding to be requested in FY19. Will house E23, L9, at Battalion Chief.[2]
Sta 30 New 1514 Ronald Drive Land acquired. Construction funds to be requested in FY19. This will be an “infill” station.
Services Renovate 4120 New Bern Avenue Mechanical system enhancements to garage bays and supply store started this month.

[1] Station 15  is the third in a series of planned renovations, which completely renovate the structures. First was Station 5 (see photos, read blog), which completed in the fall of 2016. Though programmed as two per year, it’s playing out as one per fiscal year, due to cost. (Excludes Station 11, which will also be a full renovation, plus bay expansion.)

[2] Station 23 is a new-ish project. It’s part of the RFD five-year strategic plan, published in 2015:


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Greensboro Fire Department’s First Rescue Truck, 1944

In October 1944, the Greensboro Fire Department placed their first rescue truck in service. By my estimate, this was one of the state’s first fire department rescue squads or ambulance services. Readers, please help verify.

They operated a Ford panel van (?), a former Army ambulance purchased from Fort Bragg six months earlier. It was bought and equipped using “civilian defense salvage funds,” noted the Greensboro Record on October 12, 1944. That month, civilian defense officials formerly presented the truck and equipment to the city.

The “dusty, battered vehicle of war” was “reconditioned and remodeled and fitted with an extensive selection of equipment designed to meet any emergency.” It cost about $1,400 to equip. Converting the truck into a “modern rescue car” was largely performed by members of the fire department. They also repainted the rig.



It was housed at Central Fire Station and was dispatched to any emergency, though not as an ambulance.[1] It was operated solely by city firefighters and intended for use in Greensboro and immediate vicinity.

In the summer of 1945, noted the Greensboro Record on October 18, 1945, their responses included four drowning cases, rescuing a worker from a “high radio tower,” “cut a man from a crush truck cab,” and “cut loose debris of other wrecks.” Squad members have also “loosed children from locked bathrooms, rescued cats from precarious perches, and provided numerous other services.”

In October 1945, they received an Emerson resuscitator, inhaler, and aspirator, donated by the Greensboro Junior Chamber of Commerce. They were also equipped with an iron lung, donated by the Veterans of Foreign Wars when the squad was organized. The iron lung was “light enough to be taken to the scene.”

Staffing included Capt. R. C. Fortune, who was in charge of the squad. Equipment carried on the truck in 1945 included: rubber raft, extension ladders, life preserver, grapple hooks, ammonia gas mask, fire extinguisher, hydraulic jacks, first aid equipment, stretcher, all-service gas masks, H. and H. inhaler, floodlight generator and lights, heavy duty cord, portable electric hammer, electric saw, acetylene cutting outfit, L. and R. safety carrier, pics, shovels, spades, wrecking bars, “five bathing trunks,” and “dozens of smaller items.”

2017-08-15-gfd-g1  2017-08-15-gfd-g2

The fire department’s operation of the squad was apparently short-lived. The Greensboro Record on August 6, 1947, reported that the title of the truck was transferred to the Greensboro Life Saving and First Aid Crew. What happened? Google finds no immediate references to the group. They were likely a volunteer rescue squad and, perhaps, ambulance service. Were they an off-shoot of the fire department rescue squad? Did they share or transfer members? Good questions.


Six years later in Raleigh, a volunteer rescue organization was created and sponsored and hosted by the fire department. The Raleigh Fire Department Emergency Rescue Squad was housed at Station 1, and city firefighters operated the two-piece unit. As the story goes, the volunteer members assisted at some incidents, such as drownings. Within a number of years, the squad was exclusively fire department-operated.

[1] Though not dispatched as an ambulance, it probably served as a back-up to the local ambulance services, which were probably provided by the local funeral homes.

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Raleigh Plans Relocation of Fire Station 22

As noted in this agenda item for tomorrow’s City Council meeting, the city is planning to relocate Fire Station 22 on Durant Road. The site is needed for projects related to the proposed Southeast Corridor high-speed rail initiative.

The state is planning an expansion of the crossing on Durant Road, just east of the fire station. The added grade separation will occupy the entirely of the fire station property.

This project’s been on the city’s radar since as early as 2010. This year, they were notified that the state sought to accelerate the schedule of the rail project. That is, now fast-tracked.

Google Maps

This spring, Engineering Services and the Fire Department began programming for a replacement facility. They’re planning a 14,000 square-foot fire station with two stories and three bays. It will equipped to house an engine and ladder company, haz-mat apparatus, and space for a future Battalion Chief, which may be added later.

The size and scope of the facility is consistent with the scope of other planned and pending fire department facilities, such as the new Station 12 and Station 14 buildings. (Those two have been designed to also house a Division Chief.)

City officials have selected a replacement site at 10050 Durant Road, which is part of a larger city-owned parcel that includes Abbotts Creek Park. They’re proposing using a 1.3 acre parcel on the southeast corner of the property. Click enlarge:

Project timeline:

  • August 15, 2017 – Presentation to City Council
  • September 5 – Approval requested from City Council
  • September 2017 – Design work starts
  • Fall 2018 – Construction starts
  • Early 2020 – Operational

Project cost are:

Land, Design and Site Work $967,700
Construction 5,087,500
Furniture, Fixtures and Equipment 300,000
Cost Escalation 1,675,600
Contingency and Other 969,200
TOTAL $9,000,000


City Council Agenda Item – August 15, 2017

History of Station 22

Fire Station 22 is located at 9350 Durant Road. The 1.95 acre parcel was donated by Mallinckrodt Corporation. The construction permitted was issued on December 3, 1997.

Station 22 was opened on July 31, 1988. Engine 22 was activated with a 1985 Pirsch Pumper. The 5,222 square-foot, one-story fire station was designed by Cherry Huffman Architects and erected by SAL Construction. The $850,000 facility was dedicated on August 5, 1998.

Truck 22 was activated on August 14, 2001, with a 1988 Pierce articulating platform. It was renamed Ladder 22 on August 21, 2006, and renamed Ladder 5 on July 7, 2009. Ladder 5 also staffs a haz-mat decontamination unit, a fifth-wheel trailer and prime mover that’s parked under a shelter at Station 22. 

Source: Legeros history.

Lee Wilson photo


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