At approximately 1040 hours on June 27, 2013, the crew from Engine 10 arrived to the side parking area of a grocery store in their first due area. The Firefighter remained at the apparatus while the Captain and Engineer went inside. All Firefighters had a portable radio on and in their possession. The Firefighter exited the apparatus and stood by the wall in the shade awaiting the other crewmembers to return. While standing, a person came up to the Firefighter and attempted to have a conversation. The Firefighter initially assumed the person may be in need of medical attention because of their demeanor, and attempted to request an ambulance and that her crew to return to the apparatus for a medical event. As the Firefighter was keying the microphone, the person told the Firefighter to Stop talking...just give me the drugs. At this point, the person brandished a knife and continued walking toward the Firefighter. The Firefighter then attempted to press the Emergency Button on the radio and ran toward the front of the store. That first radio transmission from the Firefighter was covered by a dispatch. The second transmission was received by the Communications Center. The Firefighter requested law enforcement for a person with a knife. While inside the store, the Captain and the Engineer heard the second transmission and proceeded outside. The Captain clarified the law enforcement response and the crew immediately returned to the Engine. By the time law enforcement personnel arrived, the suspect had left the scene. No injuries were sustained, and there was no theft of any property.
Review procedures for use of Emergency Buttons on portable radios.
Hold radio traffic for œnormal communications during œunusual traffic conditions.
Maintain situational awareness at all times.