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The Bath Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched at 3:20 p.m. on Saturday November 21, 2015 to the home of Scott and Jennifer Orlowske at 4 Mountview Road East in the Village of Bath for a possible structure fire.

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Crews from the Watervliet Arsenal were among 11 departments on the scene of a structure fire in Menands

Fire rips through Menands home Menands, NY. A fire on Saturday, November 14th caused extensive damage to a Menands home. The blaze broke out shortly after 11 p.m. at 354 Broadway. When the first crews arrived, they started to attack the fire, which was in the home's attic area, but a hydrant failed. That forced crews to back out of the building and switch supply lines to another hydrant. The fire quickly spread, prompting a second alarm. In all, firefighters from ten departments in the town

JUMP TO FILE #111615123 of Colonie as well as the Watervliet Arsenal battled the fire for over 90 minutes before declaring it under control. They remained on the scene until around 3 a.m. Earlier in the night on Saturday, crews responded to a reported basement fire at that same address, which was quickly extinguished. A few hours after

leaving the scene Sunday morning, crews were called back when someone working on the home thought they saw smoke and feared a re-kindle. An investigation, however, determined that there was no fire. The home suffered extensive damage. No injuries were reported, but six residents were displaced. The cause remains under investigation. - MIKE CAREY


MVA involving Mini and tractor

At approximately 4:30 p.m. on November 18th, an MVA involving a 2011 Mini Cooper and farm tractor was dispatched to the Oxford Fire Department. Oxford arrived on scene and found only minor personal injuries with a patient being treated at the scene. They were assisted by NY State Police and Norwich Fire for traffic control. The Mini Cooper was totaled and towed from the scene. The tractor came away with only minor damage.

All hands destroys second floor in Yonkers On Wednesday, November 11, 2015, Yonkers Fire Companies were toned out to 484 Kimball Avenue at Sherwood Avenue for a report of smoke from a window. Ladder 73 and Engine 313 quickly arrived on scene first due and transmitted a 10-29 (working fire) for a heavy smoke condition from a window on the top floor of a two story private dwelling. Battalion 2 arrived on scene and transmitted a 10-30 (all hands). At this point, the fire was

JUMP TO FILE #111915101 blowing out a window on the Exposure 1 side. Multiple lines were stretched and put into the operation and the fire was eventually knocked down. The incident was placed under control with an approximate one hour duration. - JOHN HOPPER

Incident photos can also be found on our website at JOHN HOPPER

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In memory of those who gave all 1st Responder Newspaper honors and remembers emergency responders lost in the line of duty

New Jersey: Thomas J. Kolarick, 59 Rank: Deputy Chief Incident Date: September 17, 2015 Death Date: November 11, 2015 Fire Department: Keasbey Protection Fire Company #1 Initial Summary: Deputy Chief Kolarick returned to the firehouse after a fire alarm response. Inside of the firehouse, Kolarick suffered a medical emergency and collapsed. He was subsequently transported to a local hospital where he remained hospitalized until the time of his passing. Michigan: Vince Smith, 49 Rank: Sergeant Incident Date: November 19, 2015 Death Date: November 19, 2015 Fire Department: City of Detroit Fire Department Initial Summary: Sergeant Smith passed away in his sleep at the fire station from a nature and cause of fatal injury still to be deter-

mined. According to media reports, Smith complained of not feeling well just before retiring for a rest period. Sergeant Smith was assigned to Detroit Fire Department’s Ladder 13 but was working an extra shift at the station housing Engine 48 at the time of his passing.

Michigan: Walter Szelag, 65 Rank: Captain Incident Date: November 20 2015 Death Date: November 20, 2015 Fire Department: City of Detroit Fire Department Initial Summary: Captain Szelag became ill from an apparent heart attack while on-duty with the City of Detroit Fire Department’s Fire Boat 1. According to initial reports, crew members radioed for an ambulance to be sent to the fire boat station where Szelag was working to prepare the fire boat for the winter season. Captain Szelag was transported to Detroit Receiving Hospital but succumbed to his injury.

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Fully engulfed barn just prior to the arrival of the first engine.


Six departments in Bath battle night time truck barn fire At 9:49 p.m. on Sunday, November 8th, the Bath Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched to a reported fully involved barn fire at 6868 Lake Salubria Drive in the town of Bath. Reports were coming in of several explosions. Assistant Chief Mike Fiordo confirmed it as a working fire. Chief Joe Washburn immediately called for a second alarm while he was still enroute. This summoned departments from the Bath VA, Savona, Kanona, Hammondsport and Pultney and the Bath Volunteer Ambulance Corps. Additionally, another tanker was

JUMP TO FILE #110915130 requested from Avoca and for an engine from Campbell to the Savona station. The barn was owned by Dale Morse, who has a small trucking business. The barn housed a tri-axle dump truck, a flow boy tractor trailer and many tools. His son Matthew Morse was leaving for work when a woman came running up the driveway yelling fire. As he looked down the driveway, he saw his father's truck garage burning and called 911.

The fire was declared under control by Chief Washburn at 10:31 p.m. The Steuben County Fire Investigation Team was called for the investigation, however a determination has not yet been made as to the cause. Units remained on scene overnight and the investigation team returned in daylight. There were no injuries during the fire, however, the American Red Cross was called to assist tenants living in a mobile home next to the barn, which received minor damage and had utilities disconnected. - JOHN CONRAD

IN SERVICE If you have photos you would like to see in our In Service feature, please upload them on our website or email them to


Penn Yan firefighters receive training on bailout rope systems On September 26th and 27th, firefighters with the Penn Yan Fire Department attended firefighter escape systems training at an acquired structure. The training included a classroom session, skill stations and then bailout jumps from a second floor window. Instructors from All Hands Fire Equipment & Training, based in New Jersey, provided the training on the Petzl EXO personal escape system. Several Penn Yan firefighters were also trained as instructors through the "Trainthe-Trainer" program.

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Structure fire battled by Dunkirk Dunkirk, NY. At about 1:45 p.m. on November 10th, the City of Dunkirk Fire Department was dispatched to South Roberts Road and Talcott Street for a structure fire. As of 5:15 p.m., firefighters were still on the scene. The cause of the fire Is under investigation.

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Buffalo battles blaze in vacant Buffalo, NY. Firefighters of the 3rd Battalion 1st Platoon were called out to battle a structure fire in a large vacant two and a half story frame structure at 595 Fillmore Ave. on Buffalo's East Side early Monday morning, November 9, 2015. Firefighters used a couple of one and three quarter inch and a two and a half inch hand line along with a tower ladder, ladder tower and a ladder pipe to bring the fire

JUMP TO FILE #110915100 under control. The fire also caused $10,000 in damage to 591 Fillmore Ave. The Red Cross was called to assist three adults and two children from this address. Engine Co. 35 was called as an engine to supply an aerial.

The cause of the fire is under investigation and no injuries were reported. Division Chief Peter Kertzie was in command. Damage to 595 Fillmore Ave. was listed at $102,000. The foot print of the fire building was 20'x100'. It was a former rooming house with a store on the first floor. - DAVID KAZMIERCZAK

Thanksgiving morning house fire in Bristol

Bristol, NY. On Thanksgiving morning, firefighters from Bristol and Cheshire responded to a house fire at 6665 Vincent Hill Road. Fire units arrived on location and reported smoke from the eaves of a Cape Cod style home. The fire was brought quickly under control. Finger Lakes Ambulance and the New York State Police also responded to the scene. The cause of the was under investigation by Ontario County Emergency Management.

Kitchen fire quickly knocked down On November 8, 2015, the Fuller Road Fire Department along with Shaker Road, West Albany and the Colonie Village Fire Company responded to a reported structure fire at 6 North Elmhurst Drive. The caller reported a kitchen fire that was starting to spread. Car 23 and 22 arrived on scene reporting heavy smoke and heat coming from the front door. Car 22 called for the Signal 30 and ordered the first arriving unit to pull a hose line to the rear of the structure to attack the main body of fire. Firefighter's hit the well involved kitchen fire knocking it down.

JUMP TO FILE #110815106 Crews placed multiple ventilation fans throughout the structure to vent the building. The fire was contained to the kitchen area and did not spread to the adjacent apartment. Firefighters were on scene for about one hour due to the heavy overhaul required in the kitchen. Fire investigators were brought in to investigate the cause of the fire. The home sustained moderate damage and no one was injured. - JEFFREY BELSCHWINDER

Additional photos from this incident can be found at Fuller Firefighter Wait In Staging


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More than five departments respond to brush fire German, NY. A brush fire consumed approximately 20 acres of state forest in German on Thursday. The blaze was called in from Cross Road and was reported to have flames around 15 feet high. The site was the Red Brook State Forest and is made of primarily pine trees, which were being cleared out to prevent overgrowth in the area the previous year.

JUMP TO FILE #111815118 German Fire was assisted by the Chenango County Emergency Services Bureau of Fire, NY State Forest rangers and 17 departments from multiple counties in the area. Albany also provided a helicopter to assist in the monitoring of fire-

fighting operations. The fire was believed to be caused by dry timber in the area and the high heat. Three firefighters were treated at the scene for minor injuries, two for heat related injuries and one for asthma complications.

Flooding in Dunkirk keeps crews busy On November 12, the City of Dunkirk closed roads due to flooding from Lake Erie. The fire department was kept very busy with multiple flooding-related calls.




Solar panel believed to be cause of Colonie fire

Colonie, NY. A fire on Friday, November 27th caused damage to a garage in the town of Colonie. The blaze broke out around 10:25 a.m. in the garage at 65 Johnson Road. When the first crews arrived, they were met with heavy smoke and flames coming from the rear of the structure. Crews from several departments were able to quickly extinguish the fire, keeping it from spreading to the attached house. No injuries were reported. Authorities say they believe it resulted from a solar panel on the rear side of the garage roof. It came just a few months after solar panels were blamed for a fire at a dental office less than two miles away.

MVA in Rush’s fire district

An MVA in Rush at 1738 Middle Road at 5:50 a.m. on November 12th brought firefighters out early in the morning. The operator said she swerved to miss a deer, hit a tree, then flipped upside down, getting wedged between three trees. Rush Fire Department had to stabilize the vehicle and cut down two small trees to gain access to the driver’s door and extricate the driver. This took 11 minutes. Rush Pumper 583, Rescue 588 and Henrietta Ambulance ALS responded. This Honda was equipped with front and side air bags and belts. The operator had very minor injuries because of this fact. Monroe County Sheriffs investigated the incident.

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January, 2016



MVA avoiding Fox

At approximately 6:30 a.m. on Thanksgiving, the driver of a Kia Soul traveling Northbound on State Highway 12 swerved to avoid a fox in the road and lost control of the vehicle. The Kia then drove into a ditch and launched the small SUV airborne. The vehicle came to a rest on the driver’ side in the ditch. North Norwich responded and received EMS support from the City of Norwich Fire Department. A medical chopper was requested to standby, but canceled by medical providers on scene. Both occupants were transported for non lifethreatening injuries to a local hospital.


Overturned tractor trailer blocks ramp to interstate

An overturned tractor trailer blocked the Exit 10 ramp to Interstate 84 on the morning of Monday, December 7th. Soon before 6:30 a.m., the Middle Hope Fire Department was dispatched for an overturned tractor trailer on the Exit 10 onramp to 84 at Route 9W. The driver of the vehicle was evaluated for injuries and a large tow truck was needed to upright the truck and trailer. New York State Police also assisted with traffic flow and at the scene.


January, 2016

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Grill starts house fire in Buffalo Buffalo, NY. On Saturday afternoon, November 14th, Buffalo firefighters responded to the report of a structure fire at 187 Wyoming Ave. Responding units found a fire in the rear of the home, apparently sparked by a charcoal grill. The blaze was quickly extinguished. There were no injuries.


Car into house in New Hempstead A car was reported into a house at S. Gate and Radford in New Hempstead on November 6th with minor injuries to the driver. Hatzolah Ambulance transported the driver for medical attention. Hillcrest Fire Department was also on scene. It appears the car failed to stop at a stop sign, struck a school bus (unoccupied by kids), traveled across a yard, hit two cars parked in the driveway and then struck the garage of a house.

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Fast and aggressive work of the attack teams quickly knocked down the blaze.



Assistant Chief Bonesteel of the West Crescent Fire Department

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Despite the heavy volume of fire on arrival, it was declared under control 52 minutes from the time of dispatch.

Family of six left homeless after fire destroys their home The Bath Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched at 3:20 p.m. on Saturday November 21, 2015 to the home of Scott and Jennifer Orlowske at 4 Mountview Road East in the Village of Bath for a possible structure fire. 1st Assistant Chief Robin Havens was on seen within three minutes and reported a working structure fire and requested a second alarm, which called for the Bath VA fire, Hammondsport, Kanona, Savona and Pultney Fire Departments as well as Bath Volunteer Ambulance. Also requested were the Steuben County Fire Investigation

JUMP TO FILE #112215105 Team and Bath Gas and Electric utilities to disconnect the power to the home. Smoke was coming from the building with heavy fire seen inside the window, which broke out shortly after arrival and gave oxygen to the fire. The home and contents were completely destroyed. The Orlowske children were home with their grandmother at the time the fire broke out and she got everyone out of the home safely and took them to a neigh-

bor’s home across the street. The American Red Cross was called to assist the family of two adults and four children. The fire was declared under control at 4:12 p.m., but units remained on scene to completely extinguish any smoldering fires and to help with the investigation. Bath units were back in service at 6:24 p.m. The fire is not suspicious in nature; however, it is still under investigation by the Steuben County Fire Investigation Team. - JOHN CONRAD

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Three alarm fire in Albany leaves 25 homeless Albany, NY. A three alarm fire Wednesday, December 3rd destroyed three buildings and left 25 Albany residents homeless. The fire broke out around 1 p.m. on the rear porch of 229 Park Avenue JUMP TO FILE# 120315107 and quickly spread to neighboring buildings at 231 and 229 Park. “It was a devastating fire,” said Deputy Albany Chief EJ Seney. “It's common in these types of older buildings to have them built together with cocklofts tied into each other, and the fire just runs across it.” Seney said the first crews were met with heavy fire and they started a primary search for residents, but had to pull out for fear the building would collapse. He added the fire was moving faster than they could keep up, prompting them to use copious amounts of water. “Water was an issue,” he said. “We didn't have enough water to concentrate on everything, so we had to look at keeping it out of the surrounding buildings first, then going back to hit where it flares up.” Everyone who lived in the buildings escaped and no injuries were reported. A total of 25 residents were left homeless and were assisted by the Red Cross. One couple had just gotten married a week earlier. Another couple move in around Halloween after spending three years being homeless. “Any time is a terrible time for a fire,' said Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, “but especially as we're approaching the holidays. “ Sheehan said a fund has been established to help the victims and the community is already offering support. A cause remains under investigation. - MIKE CAREY

Maybrook Fire Department's Charlie Wozniak


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No injuries in school bus rollover At 7:34on November 13th, the Warwick Fire Department was dispatched to a school bus rollover on Warwick Turnpike, with a cross of Black Rock Rd. Upon arrival, all occupants were out of the vehicle. There were two students and the driver on the bus and tno reported injuries. Warwick Fire was assisted by Warwick EMS and Warwick Police. New York State Police were called to the scene for a DOT investigation, which is a standard protocol. The scene was turned over to Warwick Police and NYSP.


Tractor trailer rollover on Interstate 84 The Mechanicstown Fire Department responded to a tractor trailer rollover on Interstate 84 Exit 4w off ramp on November 17th. Car 4 arrived to find the driver out of the truck and laying on the ground. The driver was attended to and transported to Orange Regional Medical Center by TOWVAC 194. Rescue 119's crew took care of the fluid leaks and units went back in service.


Frying french fries results in fire in Remsen Village of Remsen, NY. Thanks to being only across the street, the Remsen Fire Department was able to make quick work of a kitchen fire before the loss of a home. A resident at the UMP TO FILE# seven family apart- J112215111 ment home in the small quiet village outside Adirondack Park was making french fries in his kitchen on November 21 when the oil flashed and caused the fire to flare and ignite the kitchen. Assistant Fire Chief Mike Piekielniak of Remsen said that the fire was quickly contained by the first arriving members due to the fire only being across the street from the station. Firefighters however did suffer a set back on the first attack when the intake valve on the engine blew apart and cut off water to the men inside on the one and three quarter inch line. Quick reactions ensured there were no injuries and the fire was quickly extinguished. Damage was contained to water damage to a few apartments and smoke to the attic and a few upstairs apartments. The Red Cross responded to help those displaced by the fire. Remsen was provided mutual aid from Prospect, Barnaveld, Unified Trenton, Boonville, Stittville, and Forestport Fire Departments. National Grid also responded for electrical concerns. - ZACHARY MARICLE


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ALL IN THE FAMILY If you have photos you would like to see in our All in the Family feature please upload them on our website or email them to


Potsdam Fire runs commercial structure fire at Community Bank What started out to be a usual Saturday morning at the Potsdam fire station ended up being a very busy day for firefighters. Fire Chief Justin Perry, firefighter Randy Webster and paid fire drivers Bob Crowe and Bob Pierce were having a firehouse breakfast. At 7:37 a.m. on November 14th, Potsdam Police notified Potsdam Fire that an employee had arrived at Community Bank on Market Street and was reporting the fire alarm was going off. Potsdam Fire responded immediately with Engine 49 and Tower 5. As Engine 49 was arriving at the front of the building, Chief Perry began his 360 walk around the building and reported smoke showing. Engine 49 grabbed the hydrant in front of 75 Market Street and laid out and set up at the side of the building. Tower 5 entered the parking lot and went to the rear of the building to access the roof. Smoke was visibly pushing out the vents along the side of the building. Chief Perry established command and requested mutual aid from West Potsdam, West Stockholm, and Norwood Fire Departments to the scene with manpower and Parishville to standby at Potsdam’s station. Also a request for National Grid and St Lawrence Gas was

JUMP TO FILE #111515101 placed to secure the utilities. The building housed a bank and multiple businesses and smoke was pushing from vents on the sides of the building with no visible fire. Firefighters started forcing multiple doors and searching for the seat of the fire. Both of Potsdam Fire’s thermal imaging cameras were put to use. Engine 49 deployed several one and three quarter inch lines to the entry points. The fire was located in a utility room and was quickly knocked down. Once the fire was knocked down, an extensive overhaul operation began. The room of origin had extensive heat and smoke damage with smoke damage throughout the rest of the building. Once overhaul was complete, Chief Perry cleared Engine 49 to return to service and Rescue 14 with manpower remained on scene to assist the St Lawrence County Fire Investigation team. During the structure fire, Parishville Fire responded to an alarm at the Hop, 3 Market Street. The alarm was set off by workers doing construction. Shortly after returning to serv-

Melrose Fire Department’s Loya Family


ice Engine 49 was out the door again to 43 ½ Market St. That call was the result of a glass container containing melted candle wax breaking on a burner on a gas stove. As firefighters were clearing 43 ½ Market Street a call came in for SUNY Potsdam, Knowles Hall. Engine 49 responded to the scene and the call was determined to be a faulty detector. At 1:41 p.m., Engine 49 was on the road again to SUNY Potsdam for another alarm activation followed by a run to Clarkson University Woodstock Village for what turned out to be burned food on the stove. All Potsdam equipment including the crew at Community bank returned to service at 2:27 p.m. Potsdam Rescue and Potsdam Police also assisted at the Market Street fire. Potsdam Rescue provided a standby crew as well as provide cassistance to Potsdam Police with traffic control. A section of Market St. had to be closed due to fire apparatus and LDH hose. With the Maple Street bridge closed, it made dealing with traffic difficult. Both agencies did a great job in keeping the street closed and diverting traffic. - ROBERT PIERCE

Additional photos from this incident can be found at


Melrose Fire Department’s Assistant Chief Dominic Pasinella Jr. And His Daughter


January, 2016

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Fire in a Cornwall multiple dwelling Fire and smoke severely damaged a Cornwall multiple dwelling during a second alarm blaze on November 20th. Cornwall firefighters were dispatched at about 3:40 p.m. to 12 Union Street. Cornwall Car 1 arrived on scene to a working fire on the first floor and requested the resound and Vails Gate as the FAST to the scene. Cornwall on Hudson arrived with one engine.

JUMP TO FILE #112315111 Two lines were stretched, one operated on the first floor and the other on the second floor. At approximately 4 p.m., command reported the fire knocked down, but continued to advance the attack. On scene EMS included Cornwall with New Windsor EMS as

rehab. Also assisting were Cornwall Police, Central Hudson, Orange Car 36-102 and Orange Car 36-112. No injuries were reported by residents or first responders at the scene. The cause of the fire is under investigation. - HEATHER PILLSWORTH


Colonie Village Fire Company Chief Jack Moser


Camper fire in Endwell Endwell Volunteer Fire Department responded to a 32 foot fully engulfed camper fire at 10:15 p.m. on the 16th of November. No injuries were caused by the fire.

Fuller Road House Captain Shawn Praisner


1ST Responder Newspaper - NY

Orange County launches GPS-based dispatching of ambulances in the Town of Wallkill

Goshen, NY. Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus announced that the county has introduced a GPS-based dispatching system JUMP TO FILE# for advanced life 111915111 support ambulance calls in the Town of Wallkill. The Automatic Vehicle Locator (AVL) system utilizes Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) technology to track the real-time movements of any equipped vehicle, helping dispatchers more accurately deploy emergency resources. The first call to dispatch via the AVL pilot program was for a tractor trailer accident on the westbound Route 84 exit ramp in the Town of Wallkill at approximately 1:20 p.m. on Tuesday. The update of the county’s computer-aided dispatch system at the Emergency Services Center in Goshen enabled a flawless transfer to the GPS-based service. “When you call an ambulance, you want it to arrive as fast as possible. Seconds count,” Neuhaus said. “If this model proves successful, and I think it will, it can be replicated in other local municipalities. I am pleased that Orange County’s Emergency Services Center was instrumental in launching this potential life-saving innovation. We appreciate that the Town of Wallkill has collaborated with us on this important initiative.” Orange County historically has dispatched ambulances based on protocols developed by individual municipalities. Town of Wallkill officials had approached the county about amending the protocol to include GPS tracking last year. “The goal is to move the county forward when it comes to advanced life support ambulance calls,” Town of Wallkill Supervisor Dan Depew said. “We are excited to utilize this cutting-edge technology. This innovative system isn’t being used anywhere else in the Hudson Valley and it will save lives. I want to thank the County Legislature, County Executive, the Town of Wallkill Volunteer Ambulance Corps. and the County’s Emergency Services department for working together and making this happen.” - JUSTIN RODRIGUEZ

January, 2016



January, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - NY

Third alarm blaze destroys South End neighborhood in Albany

Heavy fire showing on 4th Street and South Pearl Street City of Albany

Dozens of calls poured in for an alarm fire at 381 S. Pearl St. in the City of Albany’s South End about three blocks from South Station, where Mayor Kathy Sheehan wanted to close Ladder 1 just one year ago. Arriving units immediately called the Signal 30 with heavy smoke showing from all three stories of the building. Crews had a large rowhouse style building approximately half a city block long with one quarter of the building heavily involved in the rear. The large column of smoke and glow could be seen for miles away. Firefighters immediately made entry ito make sure everyone was out. Shortly after learning that everyone was out, the battalion chief immediately ordered an evac-

JUMP TO FILE #111015100 uation and went into a defensive operation calling for the second alarm. All four of Albany's truck companies went into full truck operations hitting the heavily involved rowhouses with multiple master streams along with multiple engines using their deck guns. Firefighters set up multiple portable deck guns, giving the building a heavy barrage of water. Command requested the third alarm after everything was set up. The rear side of the structure collapsed inward toward the street. Firefighters continued to darken down the heavy fire, trying to pre-


vent it from spreading to more row houses. Firefighters were moved back as command created a collapse zone as a large portion of the building started to fall into the city streets. Multiple mutual aid engines and truck companies from surrounding cities were brought in to assist with calls within the city of Albany. Around 10:30 p.m., the fire was brought under control. Firefighters had a long exhausting night ahead of them hitting hotspots and picking up a large amount of hose. Fire investigators were on scene and were waiting to enter the building to try to determine the cause of the fire. No injuries were reported. - JEFFREY BELSCHWINDER

Fire Chief Abriel watches as all four truck companies go into master stream operations


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Boght Fire Chief's Kenneth Urquhart and Jake Oreshan.


West Crescent Firefighter Rich Shakerly


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January, 2016

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Attic fire for New Paltz

The New Paltz Fire Department was dispatched late on November 27th to smoke in a structure. Mutual aid was called for Highland Hose's FAST team and an engine from Modena. Heavy smoke was caused by a roofing nail that had pierced an electric cable in the attic. Minimal damage was caused to the structure, but all residents were relocated until an electrician could assess the electrical integrity.



January, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - NY

Front Row (left to right) Chief Travis Witbeck, Firefighter Elijah Thomas, Lt Daniel Haight, Firefighter Samuel Haight, Deputy Chief Jeff D'Ambrosio, Red Cross Volunteer Anne Parsons; Back Row (left to right) Assistant Chief Aaron Santillo, Firefighter Kelly Schwartz, Firefighter Jason Seaburg PROVIDED

Ravena Fire Department and Red Cross team up On October 4, 2015, the Village of Ravena Fire Department teamed up with the American Red Cross for the Home Fire Preparedness Campaign. In an aggressive step to improve fire preparedness and help prevent home fire injuries in the Village of Ravena, volunteers consisting of Ravena's bravest and the American Red Cross went door to door to village residents offering free smoke detectors.

JUMP TO FILE #111015105 Residents who opted to receive these detectors also had the option of having them installed, free of charge by the volunteers. Residents also received information regarding home fire preparedness and safety whether or not they needed the detectors. Through the proactive efforts

of the Ravena Fire Department and Red Cross, numerous homes and residents are now better prepared and safer in the event of a fire. Because of this success, both agencies are committing themselves to the continuation of the campaign to ensure that each resident in need of home smoke detectors have access to them year round. - TRAVIS WITBECK


DPW truck ignites in Sullivan County

Town of Bethel, Sullivan County, NY. A spark may have caused the acetylene tanks on a DPW truck to ignite. Firefighters from Kauneonga Lake and White Lake Fire Departments were dispatched to a truck fire at 2:45 p.m. on October 8th. The truck was assigned to a bridge re-construction site on Route 55 in Kauneonga Lake in the Town of Bethel, only 1/4 of a mile from the fire. Firefighters were quickly able to darken down the intense flames. No injuries were reported and the actual cause of the fire is under investigation.


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Oil tanker rollover in the City of Albany

On November 24th, the City of Albany Fire Department responded to 143 Melrose Ave for a tanker rollover by the New York State campus. The tanker had 1700 gallons of heating fuel on board. No oil was spilled and DEC Hazmat and Spill teams were called to the scene. The Albany Fire Department deployed one handline for caution during the incident. While the oil was pumped from the truck, firefighters stood guard in case of a larger incident. Firefighters were on scene until the late hours in the afternoon, when the oil tanker was removed.

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The staff of 1st Responder Newspaper would like to extend to our valued readers and advertisers our warmest wishes for a safe & happy holiday season.


January, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - NY


Port Jervis

Vehicle after all extrication was completed



Gowanda mutual aid heavy extrication At 8:00 a.m. on November 23, Gowanda Fire was toned out for extrication equipment to the scene of a single vehicle accident with heavy entrapment on Bentley Road for the South Dayton Fire Department. Gowanda Chief 2 and Rescue 7 responded. A full size for pickup left the road and collided with several trees with a single male patient heavily trapped between the fire wall and seat area. A large amount of ripped up sheet metal was removed and a full roof removal was done.

JUMP TO FILE #112315118 After carefully removing torn metal from around the victims left leg and cutting the seat back loose, a come-along and chain were used to pull the fire wall and steering column outward and down from the patient. The "extra cab" door and rocker panel were also removed to allow a backboard to be slid under the patient, who was gently removed to an ambulance to take him

to a waiting Mercy Flight Helicopter. The driver suffered very serious leg and other injuries. Equipment used were two cutters, two spreaders, sawzall, chains and other tools. Nearly an hour was needed to do the job. South Dayton FD, Gowanda Fire and Gowanda Ambulance were on scene, and Dayton Fire Co was used to set up the landing zone and traffic control. NY State Police were also on location. - TIM TWICHELL



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Engine 2 was displayed at the City of Newburgh Fire Department’s recent Open House





1ST Responder Newspaper - NY

January, 2016

Lostology CHAPLAINS CORNER Pastor Fernando Villicana


Monday morning fire displaces New Windsor family A Monday morning fire displaced one adult and two children on River Road in New Windsor. On December 7th at approximately 9 a.m., the New Windsor Fire Department was dispatched to 1214 River Road for a structure fire. Command reported the working fire. Mutual aid with two engines and a FAST team from West Point were soon enroute. Companies were quick to stretch lines and attempt to douse the flames. An apartment on the second

JUMP TO FILE #121015102 floor was fully involved and firefighters had multiple hand lines in operation. Central Hudson was also requested to terminate utilities to the building. Soon thereafter at 9:45 a.m., the fire was knocked down and overhaul operations were commencing. Mutual aid units began picking up at 9:54 a.m. Mutual aid included Vails Gate

with an engine, West Point for their FAST team, Good-Will to standby at New Windsor, Cronomer Valley engine to standby in Newburgh and Middle Hope to standby in Newburgh. Due to the time of day, Cronomer Valley and Middle Hope required resounding of their tones. The Town of New Windsor fire investigator arrived at the scene to determine the cause and origin of the fire. - HEATHER PILLSWORTH

Urban Search and Rescue is now a recognized term globaly. In the past few decades, lostology has been refined and has been instrumental in locating and rescuing people in need. You won’t find the word lostology in the dictionary, because I invented it. Perhaps if I use it enough, we’ll force them put it in the dictionary. Jesus said: For the Son of God has come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Luke 19:10. Jesus Christ is the greatest lostologist who ever lived. He stands as the greatest Search and Rescue force in the world. I believe the church (Christian believers) is part of His USAR Team. To seek and to save that which is lost. The church many times refers to non-believers as unchurched and unreached, but these are not Bible terms. Jesus refers to unbelievers as being “lost.” Now, I know this may be offensive to some people, but being called “lost” establishes a connection to those people. Because you


can’t say something is lost without a value being placed on it. Ever lose your keys and the search for those keys becomes a top priority? If you are said to be “lost” it means you’re important to someone. A search has value the moment it begins. Each and every time our Firefighters drive out of quarters to respond to an emergency such as a physical rescue, TC heavy rescue, trench rescue etc, value is placed on whoever is hurting, trapped and in need of help. That person is important and becomes a top priority! Firefighters are highly trained and well equipped to respond to such incidents. No one gets lost on purpose. I don’t believe anyone wakes up in the morning and says “I want to be lost today.” We were all born lost due the fall of Adam and in need of a Savior. In the book of Luke, Jesus told three back to back stories of lostness and demonstrates his commitment to Search and Rescue. And when He finds you, He doesn’t lecture you or say “serves you right.” In the Bible story of the Prodigal Son, the father is happy to see his son found again. Jesus is more concerned about leading you home than he is how or why you got lost. Lostology - Search and Rescue is about a God who is seeking you out because you’re lost or trapped in life. That search places high value on you as a human being. Jesus seeks and saves that which is lost.


January, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - NY


In my November column, I wrote about a fatal structure fire that Central Nyack Fire Chief Mike Healy responded to. Chief Healy arrived on the scene within a few minutes after dispatch and found a working fire in what appeared to be a wellmaintained building, typical of any one-family suburban dwelling. In actuality, the former onefamily house had been converted illegally for a three-family occupancy. Chief Healy sent firefighters into the burning building because there were reports of a female resident trapped inside. Search and rescue evolutions, particularly before the fire was brought under control, can be very dangerous and confusing. In this case, even more so because the building had been converted without building permits; and there were numerous violations that one would not find in a normal floor plan for a legal onefamily house. I am not sure if it is due to the economy in our area of New York State with the high cost of living or a lack of strong enforcement of the building and fire codes, but in any case, we are experiencing a proliferation of illegally converted buildings in many areas of our county. In many cases, no fines are ever levied or very small ones, which do not act as a deterrent. Regardless of the reasons, illegal landlords appear to be making so much money that they feel comfortable continuing to invest in the conversion of large numbers of buildings, with little threat from local government. They create revenue flows,

consisting of mostly cash with no leases and frequently rented to undocumented tenants, who do not complain to the authorities. In recognition of the weakness of the legal system to effectively prohibit the spread of these illegal conversions, we have encouraged the formation of civic groups. We as citizens have substantial power in civil court and otherwise to affect positive changes. These groups have been ferreting out illegal structures by sometimes going street by street looking for illegal buildings and reporting them to the proper government enforcement agencies. These groups then follow the cases in meetings at local Zoning Board of Appeals, Planning Boards, as well as court hearings. For controversial cases, they can fill a Hearing Room to full capacity, supplying speakers on the topic. They can also follow the court cases, taking notes on the proceedings and objecting or going to the media when a dismissal is considered or a small fine for a major violation is levied. These groups are highly effective, particularly when working with the local fire departments. They are making life very uncomfortable for the bad guys, who put our firefighters and residents in tremendous danger. It is also very satisfying to see successful prosecutions and large fines imposed upon unscrupulous slum landlords who jeopardize the safety of others for their own greedy financial benefit. If you would like more information on how to get a group started in your coverage area, feel free to give me a call at 845-3648933 or e-mail me at

Ravena fire crews at the ready at a working fire in Ravena


Ravena makes quick stop of job On November 9, 2015 at approximately 7:00 p.m. as Village of Ravena firefighters began their weekly training drill at the Ravena fire house, fire department personnel discovered a large fire in an alley across the street involving two structures. Deputy Chief Jeff D'Ambrosio (Car 26-02) assumed incident command as crews began to gear up to handle the job. Also on scene was Assistant Chief Aaron Santillo (Car 26-03), who assisted Deputy Chief D'Ambrosio in going door to door notifying all residents of the fire and assisting with their safe evacuation. Responding directly across the street from their firehouse, Engine Company 26-20 and Rescue Company 26-40 made quick work of the fire. A natural gas line feeding one of the buildings was determined to have a leak which further fed the fire. Once the bulk of the job was

JUMP TO FILE #111015103 brought under control, the utilities were shut off to the structures. Additionally, firefighters were able tackle additional flames that had penetrated the wall from the exterior of the balloon framed structure further prohibiting the fire spread. Assistant Chief of the Ravena Fire Police, John Lennon IV (Car 26-92), assisted in the coordination of other RFD fire police officers to redirect vehicle and foot traffic away from the scene. Without the attentiveness of crews in collaboration with a rapid, organized response of those crews, this fire would have quickly developed into a multi-alarm fire with major fire damage. The department's quick intervention kept the job to a single alarm assignment.

During the incident, residents of the buildings that were evacuated took temporary shelter at the Ravena fire house. All residents were able to find longer term shelter with family while repairs are made to their building. There were no injuries during the incident. The fire remains under investigation by the Ravena Fire Department and the Coeymans Police Department's Fire Investigation Team. Also assisting were the Ravena Rescue Squad, Albany County Paramedics, Coeymans Police Department, Village of Ravena Department of Public Works, National Grid, and Central Hudson Gas & Electric. The Coeymans Fire District stood by for the Ravena Fire Department while crews dealt with the fire. - TRAVIS WITBECK

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Mechanicville fire chief Jim Corrigan presents firefighter Christinea Wheeler with her shield, which was once used by her grandfather, Charlie Wheeler Sr.


West Glenville Chief James Spencer congratulates firefighter Cody Summer upon graduating firefighter1

1ST Responder Newspaper - NY


January, 2016

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Washingtonville responds to overturn Winona Lake Engine Company’s Ed Babcock


Washingtonville, Orange County, NY. On Friday, December 4th at approximately 9:50 a.m., the Washingtonville Fire Department was dispatched to a motor vehicle accident with overturn at 114 Toleman Road. Firefighters arrived to find an MVA with a Chevy Suburban on it's side in the roadway. No injuries were reported. Also responding were New Windsor Emergency Medical Services and New Windsor Police.


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January, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - NY

Vehicle News

The City of Beacon recently placed a 2015 Pierce 105 In Poughkeepsie, the New Hamburg Fire District has The Maple Springs Fire Company recently put this Road HD steel quint ladder in service placed into service a 2015 Seagrave 2000-gpm/750-gwt Rescue Ultramedic into service, purchased from North pumper sold by Hudson Valley Fire Equipment. Eastern Rescue Vehicles, Inc. GARY VANVOORHIS



Your department can submit photos for our Vehicle News feature. Please send a well-lit photo with a short description to The Troy Ambulance Service recently put this Wheeled Gowanda Vol. Fire Dept. just placed this 2016 Ford FCoach Sprinter into service that was purchased from 350 Crew Cab in service. Ken Jones of North Eastern Rescue Vehicles, Inc. NORTH EASTERN RESCUE VEHICLES, INC.


1ST Responder Newspaper - NY

January, 2016



Two brothers injuried in Buffalo blaze JOHN HOPPER

Roof fire in Yonkers

On the evening of December 6, 2015, Yonkers Fire Companies were toned out to 466 Castle Street for a report of a 10-29 (structure fire). Squad 11 arrived on scene first due and confirmed the 10-29 for a fire on the roof of a large three story private house. Battalion 2 arrived on scene and transmitted a 10-30 (all hands). The fire started in the chimney and extended into the building. The fire was quickly knocked down and the incident was placed under control with an approximate one hour duration.

Buffalo, NY. Firefighters of the 3rd Battalion 4th Platoon were called out to battle a structure fire at 18 Littlefield Ave. on the city's East Side late Saturday evening, December 5, 2015. Littlefield is the last street in the city before the Cheektowaga border. Companies encountered heavy fire conditions in the two and a half story frame dwelling. Multiple one and three quarter inch hand lines and 50 feet of ladders were used to bring the fire under control. Two brothers were injured and transported to E.C.M.C. Hospital while containing the fire. Damage was extensive. Extra companies were called to the scene. Due to atmospheric

JUMP TO FILE #071513129 conditions, the smoke spread through the East Side neighborhood. A resident called for smoke in the area of Briscoe Ave. a few blocks away. Two engines and a ladder along with a chief responded to the report. It was smoke from Littlefield and was listed as a good intent. Division Chief Patrick Brittzalaro was in command. -DAVID KAZMIERCZAK


Holiday parade brings out record residents

The Washingtonville Fire Department was among the hosts of the 2015 Washingtonville Holiday Parade once again. Dozens of departments decorated their apparatus for the parade, which was viewed by more residents than ever this year.

Car fire in parking lot of Target

Members of the New Hamburg Fire Department were dispatched to a car fire in the parking lot of the Galleria Mall on the afternoon of December 10th. Upon arrival of the first due engine, they found a car fully involved. The driver was able to escape and was treated by Mobile Life Support Services.


January, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - NY

Laugh your way to the bank with a stand-up comedy fund-raiser

Inspector Farr hitting the streets


Endicott Local #1280 collects for MDA On Black Friday, November 27, 2015, Endicott Local #1280 firefighters hit the streets for their annual "Fill the Boot" campaign in support of the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Firefighters spent a few hours of the beautiful Fall day at the corner of North St and McKinley Ave. in the village, where they collected over $4400 for the MDA. The IAFF and the MDA have been partnered together for over 60 years. During that time, IAFF members have collected nearly $275 million to help the MDA.

JUMP TO FILE #112815107 Endicott Professional firefighters have participated in MDA Lock-ups, Fill the Boots and Muscle Walks since 2005, and in that time thousands of dollars have been collected to fuel MDA's mission to save and improve the lives of people affected by muscular dystrophy, ALS and other diseases that severely limit strength and mobility, helping them live longer and grow stronger. - DAVID ABELL

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Who needs to laugh more than the Fire Companies ---the first responders who deal with dangerous circumstances each and every day? There’s an innovative concept for fund-raising developed by Joey Novick, who is a stand-up comedian and the Fire Commissioner in his hometown: Stand-up comedy shows. Fire companies can get much-needed laughs and profit financially as well. Novick's company, ComedyWorks, provides all-star headline comedians from HBO, Comedy Central, Showtime, Last Comic Standing, and the Tonight Show. Novick’s been producing comedy shows since 1977, and has experience producing shows with such comedians as Jerry Seinfeld, Rosie O’Donnell, Larry The Cable Guy, and Tim Allen. "The comedians were very funny, and very professional," wrote Mark Bruhmuller, Fire Chief of the Churchtown Fire Company of New York. “Joey Novick did an excellent job. Everybody loves to laugh, and it's a great deal of fun." ComedyWorks produces more than 300 shows a year, almost 150 of those for emergency service organizations. The money these shows can

VENDOR TIDBITS Notes from the emergency service business community

raise varies, depending on things like the number of tickets sold, how they're priced, the amount spent on promotion and whether food and drink are available. "Mostly companies produce shows in their own facilities, which may hold 300–400 people," says Novick. "We'll put together a show for them that will bring in comedians from major comedy clubs, with a headliner from HBO, Comedy Central, or the Tonight Show. The feature performer will be someone who's headlined the comedy circuit: Catch a Rising Star, the Improv, the Comedy Store. The host of the show will be a comedian who's very high-energy, like a gameshow host, to get the audience warmed up. A triple headliner show!” The Somerset Fire Company of New Jersey produces two fundraisers a year through ComedyWorks. "We've done about ten shows so far, and it's been great," says Mike Rein-

beck, who coordinates the shows for the 65-member volunteer department. "A friend of mine who had used Joey told me, 'This guy books really good acts.' So, we did the first show, everything was great, and we've been doing shows with Joey ever since." "I find their people to be very funny," agrees Adam Hubney, chief of the Atlantic Highlands Volunteer Fire Department in New Jersey, which books comedians through ComedyWorks for its annual dinner. "We have a professional comedy club in our county, and the quality is just as good." Comedy Works provides a 30-page ‘How-To’ guide that assists organizations through the comedy show production and warns of mistakes to avoid. "We make sure they follow everything in the guide," says Novick. "If a company has never done this before, it gives you everything from you need to know. We make sure that things get done right. Clients who follow the guide always do very well and tend to make money.” For information on Comedy Works, call 1 (888) 782-4589, go to or e-mail

1ST Responder Newspaper - NY

January, 2016


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January, 2016

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Firefighters take an aerial approach to fighting an Albany structure fire


Crews making quick work of the working fire on Main Street in Ravena

Firefighters on the scene of a structure fire in Albany




Heavy Fire Showing On 4th Street and South Pearl Street City of Albany

1ST Responder Newspaper - NY

January, 2016


Video reviews by John Malecky


Vehicle into tree in Five Mile Point Just before noon on Sunday, November 15th, Broome County Communications dispatched the Five Mile Point Fire Department to Fox Hollow Road for a motor vehicle accident with injuries. It was reported as a vehicle into a tree with a single occupant injured. Five Mile Point Fire Department responded with Squad 59, Engine 59-2, and Chief 59B. Once on scene, it was confirmed that there was one occupant, self-extricated, with minor injuries. Once the patient had been assisted into the ambulance, the vehicle was stabilized and powered down. Fire units were assisted on scene by New York State Police and Superior Ambulance. All units returned to service by 1:00 p.m.

The Big Burn by American Experience Films PBS Available from: FSP Books & Videos 188 Central Street, Suite #4 Hudson, MA 01749-1330 1-800522-8528 E-Mail:support@fire-pol i c e - e m s . c - o m Price $24.99 (DVD) This DVD is 60 minutes in length mostly in black and white. It is a program inspired by a book of the same name and is a story about the horrendous wildfire, which consumed an area of the Rockies in the Summer of 1910. The fire covered an area the size of the state of Connecticut, including million acres of land made up of towns as well as forestry. It is also a brief history of the U.S. Forest Service, its founder Gifford Pinchot, and his successor. It is the story of arrogance and pride that nature could be managed. Pinchot’s aim was to preserve national forests. He had his opponents in the name of the timber and mining industries as well as the railroads. The first two, at least, thought

that forests were theirs to make use of, in selling their products, and did not take kindly to those who got in their way. The railroads posed a threat by their trains kicking out sparks, which tended to start fires. They took no responsibility in helping to suppress them as they felt fires were only a hazard of their passing through forestry land. The story progresses telling about Pinchot’s political activism and his befriending influential people such as New York Governor Theodore Roosevelt, who later became president and how they worked together. The succeeding president was another story. It also tells us about the forest rangers stationed in the west and how they were protected from harm by seven companies of elite black soldiers of the 25th Infantry and how their performance when later fighting the Big Burn influenced the minds of many to look upon the black man in a different, favorable way. Coverage of the firefighting during the Big Burn is intense and an influential leader, who was instrumental in managing this battle is shown. His invention of the Pulaski tool came about after this fire and is still a weapon in fighting forestry fires today. I would recommend this DVD as a lesson in history and a bit of education for those who do not normally fight forest fires to see how the other guys do it!

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January, 2016

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January, 2016


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Endicott FD Local 1280 members Bidwell, Frederick, Farr, Tinklepaugh, Higgins, Botsford, Fletcher, Abell and Eaton.

Defreestville Lt Sheehan

The Round Lake Fire Department marches in the Stillwater anniversary parade




Members of Suffern's Hook & Ladder Company transformed their Seagrave tiller into a Hess fire truck for the Wallington, N.J., Holiday Parade, in November.


Fuller Road Fire Department Safety Officer Mike Romano


January, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - NY


Pekin Fire Company makes Niagara County history Peking Fire Company, that was chartered in 1933, held its 2015 installation dinner at the main hall on Upper Mountain Road in the Hamlet of Pekin. Niagara County dispatcher and Paramedic Robin Zastrow was again the Master of Ceromony. Chiefs from Cambaria, Lewiston, Ransomville, Sanborn, Shawnee, Tri-Community, and the Niagara JUMP TO FILE # Falls Air base 120615104 were present. Honored guest Niagara County Sheriff James Voutour and Undersheriff Michael Filicetti, Supervisors from Cambria and Lewiston and many more guests were also present. The night started with cocktails and drinks followed by food catered by Mr. and Mrs. catering. The tables were packed with guests and members sharing conversation and good food. Pekin's newly elected Fire Chief, Niagara Counties very first female chief Tammy Snelgrove, was called forward to be sworn in. Clarence Center Past Fire Chief Tim Norris, was the installing officer for this historic moment. The fire chiefs past and present were also called to the front of the room and with her parents at her side and surrounded by her peers, Tammy Snelgrove was sworn in. Tammy joined the fire

company in 2005 and has worked hard to improve her skills and knowledge. She credited Outgoing Chief Kevin Beutel as her mentor and the reason she had made it to this point in her life. Niagara County Sheriff James Voutour and Undersheriff Mike Filicetti presented Tammy with a plaque and these words. "It's about time your hard work and dedication has been recognized". The Sheriff made reference to his hard working female law enforcement officers, who are now high ranking supervisors in his department. Tammy received awards from the Cambria Supervisor, Niagara County Emergency Manager Jon Shultz and New York State goverment. Pekin recginized Carl Meyers for his 65 years of service to the Pekin Fire company. Chief Kevin Beutel, who was absent because of illness, was also honored by the fire company with a plaque given to his sons in his honor. Various groups were sworn in to office and other awards were presented. Master of ceremony Robin Zastrow left everyone with a few thoughts of wisdom to think about as the night of awards and honoring was turned over to the night of dancing and enjoying good music and friends.


Overnight fire in City of Newburgh makes building uninhabitable City of Newburgh, NY. At approximately 1 a.m. on Thursday, December 10th, City of Newburgh firefighters were dispatched to 116 Williams Street for a structure fire. Firefighters arrived to find heavy fire in the rear of the structure with possible extension to 114 and 118 Williams Street. Firefighters were faced with flames, which had already spread through the buildings. A truck was sent to the roof and the box was struck for multiple mutual aid units

JUMP TO FILE #121015101 to the scene and standing by. Multiple lines were placed in service, but third alarm companies and manpower was needed to continue the firefight. Mutual aid companies from Vails Gate (FAST), Orange Lake, West Point, and Orange County 36-13 (Piper) were requested to the scene. A truck from Cornwall on Hudson

and an engine from New Windsor were requested to the Public Safety Building on standby. The Red Cross was requested to the scene to assist residents, who were left homeless. According to published reports, two firefighters sustained minor injuries at the scene. No other injuries were reported. The cause of the blaze is under investigation by local officials. - HEATHER PILLSWORTH




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1ST Responder Newspaper - NY

January, 2016



January, 2016

1ST Responder Newspaper - NY



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• One (1) 2.5” Direct Tank Fill

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1st Responder News New York January  

1st Responder News New York January