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Exciting Recent Posts

First Three-County Dispatch Center in North Carolina (1 comment)
Fires in Historic Oakwood
Scotts Hill Fire Station Now Open in Pender County
Raleigh Fire Department Newsletter - Fall 2014
Vintage Photo of Stony Creek Rescue Squad (3 comments)
Wake County Apparatus Updates (7 comments)
New Book Coming - Nash County: 24/7 Heroes (1 comment)
Raleigh Citizen Advisory Council Honors Fire Station 8 (1 comment)
New Sign at Eastern Wake (And a Little History) (7 comments)
Scenes From Emmitsburg (1 comment)
Durham's New Engine 14
Greenville Consultant Report, New Rescue Pumper
Vintage Rigs From Faison, Vander, Charlotte (2 comments)
Fire Prevention Display at Station 9 - October 1979
Panoramic Photos of the Hall of Flame
Merging Wilmington and New Hanover County Fire Departments? (1 comment)
Five North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Honored at National Memorial Service October 12 (1 comment)
Weekend Events, Whoa!
And Another Story About Social Media | Houston, Facebook, Rant (3 comments)
Updated: Mystery Apparatus (1 comment)

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Legeros (Wake County Appar…): Raleigh’s new engine’s destination hasn’t yet bee…
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+ 0 - 0 | § First Three-County Dispatch Center in North Carolina

Here's something interesting out of Hyde County, a press release announcing the first three-county emergency communications center in our state. This press release (PDF) from September 25 notes the county's decision to join Dare and Tyrrell counties in the creation of a regional ECC. Each county currently operates their own "public safety answering point."

The new center will be located in Dare County, in Manteo adjacent to the regional airport. The county is donating the land. The project is estimated at $11 million and will be largely funded through the new NC E-911 Consolidation Program. (The NC 911 Board site tells more about such funds.) It should be completed in two-and-a-half years. Hyde County expects operational savings of about $130,000 a year, through participation.

Maybe our readers on the comms side can talk about both this and consolidation projects in general, and some of the benefits (as well as challenges).

+ 0 - 0 | § Fires in Historic Oakwood

How many fires have happened in Historic Oakwood? That was the question posed by The Society, in advance of their annual Candlelight Tour. History Boy accepted the challenged and commence some six weeks of research. Okay, six weeks including three trips including two out of state. (Took my files with me.)

The parameters? Had to have occurred within the defined historic district. Meaning, specific blocks (or addresses) on such streets as Bloodworth, East, Person, and Polk. And only working fires. No pots on stoves. No mattress fires. No vehicle fires.

Sources included Oakwood historian Matthew Brown, News & Observer and Raleigh Times articles, Raleigh Fire Department records including their public fire report web site (not to mention the log books of Engine 3 and Engine 7, which were particularly helpful), Sanborn Maps, city directories, and county real estate records.

What was found? Five tiers of fires in the historic districts:

One of which killed four people on April 29, 1982. One of the deadliest in the city's history. Another on February 18, 1958, saw the injury of firefighter Claude Johnson, who broke his leg. It was later amputated and he was unable to return to firefighting. He became a dispatcher and retired as same twenty years later. Read that blog post.

The earliest fire was 1890, the latest was 2012. The totals for recent decades are three in 2010s, five in 2000s, twelve in 1990s, nine in 1980s, and thirteen in 1970s.

Plus some smaller fires (23), some notable fires outside the district (A&P grocery, IGA grocery, etc.), and even a list of fireman who lived there. All sorts of goodies for your Friday reading pleasure.

Data review is absolutely encouraged. Help me correct errors, clarify information, and, of course, add any other fires yet confirmed or discovered.

Read the research document (PDF).  (Link fixed!)

+ 0 - 0 | § Scotts Hill Fire Station Now Open in Pender County

From a reader, Pender County Station 18 has been opened in Scotts Hill. The new facility is operated by Pender EMS & Fire. They're also constructing a new station on Highway 421, which will be Pender County Station 29. See their Facebook page for photos of both facilitie. It opened earlier this month. There's an open house on November 9, from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. 

The Scotts Hill community was protected by their own fire department from 1977 to 1992. Read that story in a prior posting. They even published this cookbook in 1975. And here's a posting from last year, about the development of Pender Fire & EMS.
 

+ 2 - 1 | § Raleigh Fire Department Newsletter - Fall 2014

The Fall 2014 edition of the Raleigh Fire Department Newsletter has been posted to www.raleighfirenews.org. This issue's contents includes features on company training at the Council Building and confined space rescue training for the Special Operations Command. Plus updates from Services and Training, coverage of the recruit graduation, a photo gallery, and more. The newsletter is produced quarterly by Editor Mike Legeros. It's a quarterly publication for personnel, retirees, and citizens. And in its eighth year of publication, no less! Read the new issue (PDF), which is posted to the web site www.raleighfirenews.org
 

+ 0 - 0 | § Vintage Photo of Stony Creek Rescue Squad

Here's a great old photo passed along from a reader, that was shared on the Rocky Mount... Way Back When Facebook group, and originated from the department's Facebook group. Stoney Creek Rescue Squad of Nash County. Let's place the photo as late 1960s, what do you think? Notice the spelling of Stony as Stoney. The department is currently named Stony Creek Fire and Rescue. (Same thing happened in Wake County. Stony Hill was originally named "Stoney Hill.")

As their web site notes, the fire department was organized in 1956 and the rescue squad was created in 1959. (They were incorporated in 1979, say state records.) They ceased their fire department operations in 1994, and ceased most of their ambulance and rescue squad services in 2006. Today, they maintain a pair of ambulances staffed on a volunteer basis. Now readers, what are the makes and models of those beautiful vehicles? Click to enlarge:
 

+ 0 - 0 | § Wake County Apparatus Updates

What's happening with new apparatus deliveries and purchases in the Capitol County? Here's the skinny on what's coming (or already been delivered). Readers are welcome to edit or expand our list:

+ 1 - 0 | § New Book Coming - Nash County: 24/7 Heroes

Book announcement. Veteran fire photographer Bob Bartosz and retiring Rocky Mount firefighter Todd Joyner are publishing a book about Nash County firefighters are more. Titled Nash County: 24/7 Heroes, the book will be a hardcover with 256 pages and hundreds of photos by Bartosz. The book will be published in May or the first week in June. The authors are taking advance orders. The price is $32.95, delivered to Nash County fire stations. Add $6.95 for mail orders. Here's the flyer (PDF). Order your copy today!
 

+ 0 - 0 | § Raleigh Citizen Advisory Council Honors Fire Station 8

Raleigh Fire Department Station 8 was honored tonight as a recipient of the 2014 Raleigh Citizens Advisory Council Neighborhood Recognition Awards. Engine 8 and Car 20 on “A” platoon attended the event, which was held in a ballroom at the Five Points Center for Active Adults on Noble Road. The awards ceremony was preceded by a dinner at 6:00 p.m.

The event’s emcee was Raleigh CAC Chairman Benson Kirkman. The award was presented by West CAC Co-Chairman Jim Paumier. The four firefighters accepted the award and Captain James Roof make some remarks, talking the station’s involvement with the community.

Fifteen awards were presented tonight to individuals and organizations as nominated by each of the city’s fifteen CACs. Since 1977, the Raleigh Citizens Advisory Council (RCAC) has been recognizing significant efforts by property owners, community groups and individuals to enhance the health, safety, and appearance of their neighborhoods.

Pictured are Engine 8 members Capt. James Roof, Lt. Edward Tindal, and Senior Firefighters Tim Godwin and James Jones, along with Division Chief Barry Spain and his Aide First Class Firefighter Ian Griffin. Click to enlarge:
 


+ 0 - 0 | § New Sign at Eastern Wake (And a Little History)

Eastern Wake Fire & Rescue celebrated their 60th anniversary on Saturday with an all-day open house. Visitors to Station 1 on Clifton Road enjoyed a number of planned activities, including rescue and extrication demos, fire extinguisher training, and a Carolina Air Care visit. There was a dunking booth and a bounce house for the kids and all sorts of goodies. They also saw this new sign at the station, a picture of which was posted to their Facebook page. Gets me thinking about EMS co-location. Quite a few at fire stations in Wake County, come to think of it.
 


 
Eastern Wake Fire & Rescue was started six decades ago as the Knightdale Volunteer Fire Department. The town was incorporated in 1927, with growth started in the early 20th century after a railroad and depot were built. The town suffered a major fire on February 7, 1940. They had neither a fire department nor a water system. Several businesses and homes were destroyed.

A municipal water system was installed a decade later, and a community fire department was soon organized. The first meeting was held on October 27, 1953. The fire department was chartered on October 27, 1954. The first Fire Chief was Randolph Griffith, and there were twenty-six charter members.

The first fire truck was town-owned pick-up truck that carried hose and other equipment. The next year, a 1942 pumper was purchased from Navy surplus. The fire station was built in 1956. That two-bay block building still stands at 401 Hester Street. It has been expanded a number of times. The department's second station was opened on Clifton Road in 1995. The department reorganized in 2003 and changed their name to Eastern Wake Fire & Rescue.

Learn more about their history in these timelines, which were researched by Mr. Blogger a decade ago. Congratulations to my friends at Eastern Wake, and the many who have served their community in the years and decades before.

+ 1 - 1 | § Scenes From Emmitsburg

Reporting from the road and the National Emergency Training Center (NETC) in Emmitsburg, MD. That's where the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial weekend is underway. Mr. Blogger is a member of the media team, and specifically a photographer for the media. Coverage of the event is continuous on the NFFF Facebook and Twitter channels. You'll also see some sundry updates from me, via Twitter.

Here are a couple quick shots from Friday. Upper left is a Howard County Fire-Rescue command unit that's been graciously provided to the media team. That's my "office" for the weekend. Upper-right is a 2013 Oshkosh Striker from BWI airport. one of three rigs on display on the memorial grounds. It's parked beside the dining hall. Bottom is a mobile-phone panorama from the stage at the memorial. 

You can watch tonight's candlelight service and tomorrow morning's memorial service live at http://www.firehero.org/. Here's this year's roll of honor, which includes five firefighters from North Carolina who died in the line of duty last year. (See prior posting on that subject.) Watch the Twitter widget in the upper-right hand corner of the blog home page for more pictures through the weekend. Click to enlarge:
 

+ 0 - 0 | § Durham's New Engine 14

We tweeted this one yesterday, but let's post the thing as a blog post. (For those of you that don't follow me on Twitter, or watch those tweets on the upper-right of the blog home page.) The Durham Fire Department recently received a 2014 Sutphen Shield 1500/500 pumper. Was placed in service on September 25. Lee Wilson took a trip to the Bull City and photographed the rig this week. See more photos.
 

+ 0 - 0 | § Greenville Consultant Report, New Rescue Pumper

Couple updates from Pitt County. The city of Greenville recently received the results of a consultants evaluation of the fire and EMS department. They presented to City Council on Monday, and the hour-long presentation can be viewed on the web.
 


 

On Tuesday, WNCT published this story about the report. On Wednesday, The Daily Reflector published this story (requires a subscription to view), which summaries the report's recommendations as "consider reducing EMS staff per ambulance from 3 to 2, analyze use of overtime, add more staff in peak hours, add administrative positions, create a comprehensive plan and gain accreditations."

Does anyone have a digital copy of the report that they can provide? We'll post and host here, for others to read.

New Rescue Pumper

Next is Greenville's new engine, which is a 2014 Pierce PUC rescue pumper that's pictured outside historic Lambeau Field in Green Bay, WI. The apparatus is due soon and will serve as Engine 3. The picture was posted to the fire department's Facebook page. According to their web page, Engine 3 currently operates a 2001 E-One quint. 
 

+ 0 - 0 | § Vintage Rigs From Faison, Vander, Charlotte

Found for sale on eBay, color slides of the following rigs and with diminishing levels of exposure, top to bottom: Faison's 1973 Ford C/Howe pumper, Vander's 1981 Spartan/E-One pumper, and Charlotte Engine 3 as a 1988 Pierce Lance pumper.
 

+ 1 - 0 | § Fire Prevention Display at Station 9 - October 1979

For your Tuesday enjoyment, here's a scan of a photocopy (sorry for the lame quality) of a Raleigh Town Today photo of a fire prevention display at Station 9. Click to enlarge:



 
The caption reads: "Fire Station No. 9, located in North Hills at the corner of Six Forks and Rowan, was named first place winner in a department-wide contest for the best display in observance of Fire Prevention Week. Chief Rufus E. Keith presented a plaque to the station's three captains--Ed Thornton, W. K. Beasley, and R. S. Debnam--on Tuesday, October 9, the date in 1871 on which the famed Chicago Fire occurred. Other winners in the fire department's contest were fire stations No. 3 second, No. 1 third, and No. 8, No. 12, and No. 2 as honorable mention. Left to right above with the prize-winning display are Firefighters Jasper Mial, Charles Mann, Geroge A. Hodge, and Dale Casey."

+ 0 - 0 | § Panoramic Photos of the Hall of Flame

Visited the Hall of Flame fire museum in Phoenix last week. Was my first visit to town, and my first visit to Arizona. Took about 1,340 photos at the fire museum. Tried to get a couple shots of each rig. Those'll take a couple weeks to get posted. (Maybe I can get a list of what I shot, so makes and models can be added.) Meanwhile, enjoy this quartet of mobile phone panoramas. That, or get your butt online and buy some plane tickets. 'Tis an easy four-hour-and-half flight. Perfect for a good nap and some long reading. Click to enlarge:
 









+ 0 - 0 | § Merging Wilmington and New Hanover County Fire Departments?

That's the recommendation from a consultant, as reported by the FireNews.net story, from this Star-News story by Julian March. The 119-page study was released today. The project was started last year, when the County Manager asked the City Manager to consider a consolidation study. In November, City Council approved funding of same, and cost was shared with the county.

Mind you, we're just talking about WFD and NHCFR. There are four other fire departments in New Hanover County: Carolina Beach, Kure Beach, Wrightsville Beach, and the airport. Also, as the Star-News story notes, mergers of the city and county have been rejected by voters in 1973, 1987, and 1995. Talks started again in 2001, but didn't go anywhere. Only at a department-specific level has success been reached, beginning with transportation departments in 2004 and public utility departments in 2008.

What's going to happen with the report? Public input will be sought at a pair of meetings on October 29. The consultant will make a presentation to the county and city on November 17 and 18, respectively. Actions are expected at the county level, to further the initiative. (The study suggests establishing committees as a first step.)
 

Read the Report

What does the report say? Quite a bit, and too much to summarize upon first skim.

Here's the direct link (PDF), thanks to FireNews.net. Read and digest and report back with your reactions.
 

Postscripts

+ 0 - 0 | § Five North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Honored at National Memorial Service October 12

On Sunday, October 12, the 33rd Annual National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Service will honor five firefighters from North Carolina who died in the line of duty last year. They are among the 98 firefighters who died in 2013, as well as nine firefighters who died in previous years, who will be remembered at the official national service held at the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, MD.

Their names will be added to the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial, which is located on the Academy grounds. The annual national tribute is sponsored by the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF) and the Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Fire Administration.

More than 5,000 people, including members of Congress, Administration officials and other dignitaries, members of the fire service, and families and friends of the fallen firefighters are expected to attend. Members of the fire service, honor guard units and pipe and drum units from across the U.S. will participate in this national tribute.

Visit www.firehero.org for a complete list of the fallen firefighters being honored, along with Memorial Weekend related videos, photos, media and broadcast information.

Yours Truly will be participating again as a volunteer photographer, as part of the Social Media team. See my photos from the 2013 Memorial Weekend, which was my first visit.

+ 0 - 0 | § Weekend Events, Whoa!

Fire Prevention Week starts on Sunday and thus a flood of fire department events are scheduled for this weekend. Here's a sampling of what's happening. Call or check the web for event times and more details.

Saturday, October 4

Wake County:

Other counties:

Sunday, October 5

+ 0 - 1 | § And Another Story About Social Media | Houston, Facebook, Rant

Arson investigator accused of posting obscene references to Islam on personal Facebook page.

That's the title from this Houston Chronicle story by Allan Turner, but there are others including this pair from Curt Varone and Dave Statter:

The Statter911 posting is longer, and contains excerpts and links from multiple sources. He's also participating in discussions of the story on the Statter911 Facebook page. (Here's one such thread there with some strong reader opinions on the issue. Plus some of Dave's trademark humor.)

But let's go back to the headlines. These headlines interest me, because they (and others) are so distinctly different:

Depending upon the headline that you read, and the specific words therein, you might have a different reaction. Let me simplify that. Your personal reaction might vary to these headlines. Just as reactions to this story are going to vary.

Social media. Facebook. These are very personal things, when used for personal reasons. Duh, right? But I submit that such "individualized perspectives" are one of the reasons that public servants find themselves "in trouble."

Did you read one or more of these headlines and shrug? Or dismiss their validity to "political correctness?" Or pump a fist in the air, because of your feelings toward the subject matter?

You get the idea.

With social media technologies, it gets complicated when you try to square "free speech" with concepts such as "my personal page" or "that's when I'm off-duty." And as this story yet again exemplifies, there can be career consequences.

Readers, your thoughts?

--

Postscript, added after I've re-read this thing a couple times. Needs a closer or a concluding statement. Maybe a piece of advice. Yada, yada, yada, and then it ends. That's it, Legeros? Can't you give us something to work with, to help us going forward?

Okay, how about this...

And by looking at ourselves, and our personal reactions, the need for policies and procedures is firmly reinforced. We're all different people, both in person and online. We have different perceptions of what's good versus what's bad with social media. Some folks have a great inner compass. Others need a framework to help their thinking. Build a policy, if you don't have one. Educate about your policy, if you haven't lately.

That work?

+ 0 - 1 | § Updated: Mystery Apparatus

October 1
Here are the rigs revealed, as photographed at the Pima Air and Space Museum in Tucson, AZ. Top left is a Army Class 530 crash truck, originally spec'ed as 500/400/40, but modified with a larger water tank and turret. Top right is an Air Force Biederman O-11 crash truck, but with it's original double Rockwood foam turrets apparently upgraded to a single one. Bottom is an Oshkosh M-12 crash truck that originally served the Tucson airport. Thanks to Mark Redman and Ted Heinbuch via the Fire Trucks at War Facebook group for the detailed information. Click to enlarge:
 

 
September 30br> Reporting from the road, somewhere in the continental United States. Answers at a later date.
 

+ 0 - 0 | § Flood-Prone Milner Inn Acquired by City of Raleigh

As yesterday's press release noted, the City of Raleigh is acquiring the Milner Inn at 1817 Capital Boulevard, which is one of the most flood-prone properties on Capital Boulevard (my words). It and three other sites were damaged by flooding on August 12. Recall the water rescues performed (see photos) as residents and patrons were evacuated from the Inn and the adjacent Foxy Lady.

The city and the owners have agreed to a purchase price of $830,00. The closing is tentatively planned for mid to late October. The acquisition is being funded through a FEMA grant program both (a.) in response to historical flooding events and (b.) to eliminate future claims submitted to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

Prior to this deal, the city had used FEMA grants and budgeted Stormwater Utility fund monies to fund the purchase seven structures that had experienced multiple flood-related losses over the years. Here's a blog post about the demolition of the nearby AMF bowling alley in April 2013, and the related Capital Boulevard corridors study.

The city plans to demolish the hotel and the neighboring night club. Their goal is to build a park in the area between the north and southbound lanes of Capital Boulevard, and through the incremental acquisition of the commercial properties therein. Such a park would improve the appearance of the city's northern gateway, as well as improve flood control both there and downstream.

The News & Observer has a good article on the story by Colin Campbell. Below are pictures of the Inn's flooding both in August and in June 2007, when remnants of a tropical storm brought flooding to a number of areas around Raleigh.

Readers, what are your memories of flooding (and responses to same) at the Inn or neighboring properties, over the years and decades?
 


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Copyright 2012 by Michael J. Legeros