Illinois OSHA inspectors have warned Chicago’s Mayor Brandon Johnson to improve firefighter safety after finding major breakdowns in communication at scenes where Firefighters have died, including a fire that left a rookie dead.
The Illinois Division of Occupational Safety and Health sent a strongly worded letter* to Johnson that the CFD must make it “standard operating procedure” for firefighters to stay in touch with each other at all times.
“CFD must extinguish the practice of members operating alone inside structure fires,” agency Chief Erik Kambarian wrote last week. “IL OSHA will leverage all available enforcement tools to ensure members enter together, stay together, and exit together.”
Once again this is an opportunity for all of us to look at our own policies, training and regular operations with a “could that happen here?” focus.
HERE IS MORE:
*From The Letter:
The letter ends with several recommendations for improved training and manpower. They include:
=Provide training for command team members.
=Develop and implement command simulation training and assessments.
=Dedicate additional staff and resources for training, specifically in areas of command, team continuity, radio communications, dynamic risk assessment and mayday procedures.
=Require all teams entering a basement to have the needed equipment (hoseline, TIC etc).
=Refine radio system software and hardware to ensure proper function and reliability.
=Work with firefighters, company officers and command officers on an effective Emergency Alert Button (EAB) activation process, develop training for the process, drill on the process and periodically test the process.
=CALIFORNIA RECRUIT FIREFIGHTER LODD REPORT:
A Santa Cruz County firefighter recruit died last year during a training exercise. Despite resuscitative efforts by Firefighters at the Ben Lomond Training Center, Recruit Firefighter Daniel Lamothe, 38, died at a local hospital. He was in his 7th week of a 19-week academy engaged in firefighter safety and survival training when he collapsed.
The Recruit told the instructors he was “freaking” because he was having difficulty finding the way out. The instructors reassured him he was ok and told him to relax and breathe as they helped him find the opening to the bottom level and exit. With the assistance of the instructors, the Recruit was in a sitting position with his legs in the opening to the first level, he lowered his SCBA in front of him and proceeded through the opening towards the maze exit. However, as he transitioned through the opening, he became unresponsive and slumped to the ground on the first level,” investigators wrote.
HERE IS THE REPORT:
=NEW YORK FIREFIGHTER COLLAPSES
We regret to pass on that Firefighter Robert “Rory” Boire, 64, of the Cumberland Head VFD in Plattsburgh, NY died in the Line of Duty earlier last month.
On Wednesday, Dec. 27, 2023, Firefighter Boire responded to the scene of a car crash when he suffered a heart attack. He was immediately transported to the hospital where he remained for two days. On Wednesday, Jan. 3, 2024, he passed away from complications experienced as a result of the heart attack.
=TWO SOUTH KOREAN FIREFIGHTERS KILLED IN THE LINE OF DUTY
Two firefighters were found dead Thursday after responding to a fire at a meat processing factory. Firefighters recovered the bodies of 27-year-old Kim Su-kwang and 35-year-old Park Su-hoon, who were stranded during the rescue and extinguishing operations. They were found 20 feet from each other on the third floor, 3 hours apart due to debris and related challenges.
The two firefighters were part of a four-member search when they became separated. Both “special forces” Firefighters were previously part of the team that conducted a 68-day search for missing people when the northern region in North Gyeongsang was severely affected by torrential rain in July 2023, resulting in 47 deaths.
=AUSTRALIA FIREFIGHTER DIES IN THE LINE OF DUTY
A Victoria Country Fire Authority volunteer Firefighter has died while fighting a fire in Victoria’s west. The Firefighter, 66, collapsed while operating at the suspicious fire at a property in Portland on Tuesday morning. His brigade colleagues, Fire Rescue Victoria firefighters and paramedics performed CPR but he could not be revived. The shed fire was one of four suspicious fires in the town on Tuesday and investigators believe they are linked.
Our condolences to all those affected, Rest In Peace.
=CHICAGO FIREFIGHTER SHOT OFF DUTY
Firefighter/EMT Anshawn Slater, Chicago Truck 12, was shot outside his home last week while his car was being stolen. After being shot five times, he is likely to recover, but a long road is still ahead. He has a large family that he supports with multiple jobs — this will certainly set him back and any help is greatly valued:
Take Care. Be Careful. Pass It On.
The Secret List 2/2/2024-1322 Hours