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The Texas Edition PUBLISHING SINCE 1993



FALL, 2015



29 San Antonio Fire Department units responded to the Fox Run Apartments in the 10000 block of Broadway shortly before 11:00 Tuesday morning, October 6th.

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Fall, 2015

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

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Fall, 2015



Dallas Fire-Rescue’s wildland firefighters head to Bastrop Dallas, TX. On Thursday, October 15, 2015, at 7:59 a.m., Dallas Fire-Rescue’s (DFR) Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) Team received a request,from the Texas Intrastate Fire Mutual Aid System (TIFMAS) for deployment of resources to assist in the wildland fires in Bastrop. While they didn’t receive specific assignments until they arrived

JUMP TO FILE #101615106 later on, their primary focus was structure protection for the many homes which were threatened by the fire conditions. As many as 16 members were deployed with a fire engine, two type III brush trucks and a strike

team leader vehicle. Once they arrived, all updates came by way of the Bastrop County Emergency Operations Center. For more on DFR’s WUI Team, visit their Facebook, at - JASON EVANS


Complete loss at apartment complex SHERI HEMRICK, WWW.GOTPICTURES.US

Car fire quickly doused in Hillsboro Hillsboro Fire/Rescue responded to a report of a car fire at the Meadows Apartments on November 6th. The hood of the car had to be cut away in order to reach the fire. The fire was extinguished within ten minutes.

JUMP TO FILE #110915107 The car was parked close to an apartment building, but there was no damage to the building. Heavy smoke from the car fire

caused several residents to rush home to check on the fire. No injuries by firefighters or civilians. The cause of the fire is under investigation. - SHERI HEMRICK

29 San Antonio Fire Department units responded to the Fox Run Apartments in the 10000 block of Broadway shortly before 11:00 Tuesday morning, October 6th. The building, which housed eight apartment units, is being considered a complete loss, but our firefighters did a great job of containing the fire to that single building. Firefighters also rescued two dogs, one cat and a hamster and no injuries were reported. The cause of the fire remains Undetermined at this time.


Fall, 2015

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Austin assists during flooding Lt. Richard Kruse was one of many folks from the Austin Fire Department on October 30th who were out helping those in need. He reunited a mom with her toddler after they were both rescued in the Bluff Springs area. From midnight until 2:00 p.m. today, AFD had approximately 478 incidents in the city; of those dispatched calls, there were at least 14 water rescues, three wires arcing, 44 flood assist calls, and ten flood barricade calls.

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1st Responder News (ISSN 1525-1683) - Vol. 1 No. 2 - Texas edition is published quarterly, 4 times a year for $15 per year by Belsito Communications, Inc., 1 Ardmore St., New Windsor, NY 12553. Periodicals Postage Paid at Newburgh, NY and additional mailing offices. Postmaster: Send address changes to 1st Responder News, 1 Ardmore St., New Windsor, NY 12553. No financial responsibility is assumed by this newspaper to publish a display, classified, or legal ad or for typographical errors except of reprinting that part of the ad which was omitted or in error. Omissions or erA division of: rors must be brought to the attention of the newspaper during the same month of publication.

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Emergency Medical Services have consistently evolving protocols in the quest to provide superior prehospital care for every patient. In the past few months, significant updates have included the re-introduction of tourniquets, far less reliance on backboards, and updated AHA CPR guidelines. Some of these guidelines have already been put into practice, but it is up to the individual agency to ensure that all providers are updated and utilizing new protocols in a timely fashion. Key updates regarding tourniquets: Tourniquets have always been a part of practice, but were generally reserved as the “last resort” in potentially life threatening bleeds. Under the update, attempts to control bleeding begins with a sterile dressing and direct pressure; hemostatic dressings can be applied directly to the site in severe or arterial bleeds and covered with sterile dressings before applying direct pressure. Elevation and pressure points are no longer advised if bleeding is not controlled with direct pressure. If the wound site is accessible for tourniquet use (i.e.: extremities), then a tourniquet may be used as the first-line of treatment to control bleeding. Recent studies have suggested that patients experience better outcomes in cases of severe bleeding when tourniquets have been used properly and applied quickly. When applying the tourniquet, follow manufacturer’s guidelines and always apply the tourniquet proximal to the wound site. Do not remove the tourniquet once it has been applied unless instructed to do so by medical control. Monitor the wound site for signs of profuse bleeding through the dressings. The tourniquet should be tight enough to prevent distal pulses. If bleeding is still not controlled, a second tourniquet should be applied ap-

proximately one to three inches proximal to the first. One of the contraindications of using a tourniquet except as a last resort is if the patient has a Hemodialysis catheter/AV fistula in the limb. Key changes regarding the use of backboards: Healthcare providers will assess high or low risk spinal injury patients to determine whether spinal motion restriction or traditional spinal immobilization is recommended. Studies have shown that there are negative effects of prolonged spinal immobilization on a hard backboard including increased pain, higher risk of aspiration and skin ulcerations. Spinal motion restriction can include the use of a cervical collar and securing the patient to an ambulance stretcher. The purpose is to reduce the patient’s movement and prevent further injury to the spine. All patients suspected of spinal injury need to be assessed and monitored for signs of altered mental status, complaints of pain, and numbness or tingling of extremities. The highest level of medical personnel caring for the patient will make the determination regarding the use of a cervical collar or not. Key updates in CPR guidelines: The American Heart Association has issued new 2015 guidelines for Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation for both the professional and the layman. There are slight, but important changes to all levels of CPR and for all ages. The most significant for BLS healthcare providers administering adult CPR includes minimum and maximum rate of compressions, previously 100+ per minute now becomes 100 to 120 per minute; depth of compressions was at least twoinches and is now no less than twoinches and no more than 2.4-inches; breathing and pulse should be assessed at the same time in order to minimize the time to initiate compressions and breaths; and limit interruptions in chest compressions to less than ten seconds for assessments, transport or other distractions. The compression/breath ratio remains 30:2 however if an advanced airway is in place, one rescue breath should be given every six seconds while continuous chest compressions are being delivered.


9/11 Memorial Ceremony The Frisco Fire and Police Department’s held a 9/11 Memorial Ceremony at the Frisco Central Fire Station to honor the memory of all those who lost their lives during the tragic events of fourteen years ago today.

Additional columns from Chelle Cordero can be found at

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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 York: Lawrence G. Sesso, 40 Rank: Firefighter Incident Date: August 22, 2015 Death Date: August 22, 2015 Fire Department: Sayville Fire Department Initial Summary: An hour after responding to a commercial structure fire, Firefighter Sesso participated in a fire department parade including multiple fire departments. On his way home, Sesso suffered a cardiac arrest. Firefighter Sesso was transported to the Southside Hospital but did not survive his injury. North Carolina: Chris Phillips, 41 Rank: Lieutenant Incident Date: August 26, 2015 Death Date: August 27, 2015 Fire Department: Locke Township Fire Department Initial Summary: Lieutenant Phillips passed away from an apparent heart attack several hours after responding to a fatal motor vehicle accident on Edmiston Road near Mt. Ulla, North Carolina.

Minnesota: Shane Clifton, 38 Rank: Firefighter/Paramedic Incident Date: August 31, 2015 Death Date: August 31, 2015 Fire Department: Locke Township Fire Department Initial Summary: Firefighter-paramedic Clifton was on duty and working out at the firehouse when suddenly he wasn't feeling well and then collapsed. Clifton was treated by fellow firefighters and medics at the station and then transported to Regions Hospital, where he succumbed to his injury. The nature and cause of fatal injury, thought to have been a catastrophic cardiac arrest, are still to be determined by authorities. Michigan: Dennis Rodeman, 35 Rank: Firefighter Incident Date: September 9, 2015 Death Date: September 9, 2015 Fire Department: Lansing Fire Department Initial Summary: While participating in the annual "Fill the Boot" fundraising campaign, Firefighter Dennis Rodeman was struck by a pickup truck passing through the charity event. Rodeman was transported to Sparrow Hospital where he passed away from the injuries he sustained in the collision. A preliminary investigation of the incident indicates that the driver of the truck intentionally hit Rodeman who was wearing a reflective vest and other gear. The driver has been apprehended and is in custody. Texas: Daniel Edward Hampton, 35 Rank: Firefighter/EMT Incident Date: September 18, 2015 Death Date: September 18, 2015 Fire Department: Burnet Fire Department Initial Summary: Firefighter/EMT Hampton was fatally injured when the ambulance he was driving

struck the rear of a semi-trailer truck. His firefighter/paramedic partner, Timothy Pierce, and the patient in the ambulance both received injuries and were transported to a local trauma center for treatment. Investigation into the fatal accident continues by local and state authorities. New York: Barry Miller, 50 Rank: Assistant Chief of EMS/Firefighter Incident Date: September 23, 2015 Death Date: September 23, 2015 Fire Department: Bergen Fire Department Initial Summary: While responding to an emergency call for a male with chest pain, Chief Miller died from injuries sustained when the fire department ambulance he was a passenger in collided with a slow moving backhoe loader. The driver and one other crew member on board the ambulance were not injured. The ambulance was traveling east on Bovee Road in Riga, New York, when the accident occurred. According to media reports quoting law enforcement officials, early morning sunshine and fog were contributing factors to the fatal accident which remains under investigation by local and state authorities.

South Carolina: Stuart Hardy, 31 Rank: Firefighter/EMT Incident Date: September 13, 2015 Death Date: September 24, 2015 Fire Department: Burton Fire District Initial Summary: Firefighter/EMT Hardy passed away from a nature and cause of injury still to be determined after suffering a medical emergency while working at the scene of a motor vehicle accident on September 13th, 2015. Michigan: Richard Leo Crosby, Sr., 67 Rank: Firefighter Incident Date: September 24, 2015 Death Date: September 24, 2015 Fire Department: Casnovia Township Fire Department Initial Summary: Firefighter Crosby suffered a cardiac arrest during a fire call incident that occurred on 9/24/2015. Crosby was taken off of life support and succumbed to his injury on 09/26/2015.

New Jersey: Sean M. Benson, 50 Rank: Firefighter Incident Date: September 23, 2015 Death Date: September 23, 2015 Fire Department: Paramus Fire Department Initial Summary: Firefighter and Ex-Fire Chief Benson was found unresponsive at home several hours after responding with Paramus Fire Department, Company 2, to a local restaurant for a fire alarm activation. Firefighter Benson was transported to the hospital where he was pronounced deceased.

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

Fall, 2015



Fall, 2015

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX


Dallas battles five alarm fire At 10:50 a.m. on October 28th, Dallas Fire-Rescue responded to a 911 call for a structure fire at the Greenbriar Place Condominiums, located at 5322 Fleetwood Oaks, near the Love Field area of Dallas. When firefighters first arrived at the scene, they observed heavy smoke coming from the roof of the two-story building. Though they were able to make entry in a unit near what is believed to be the area of origin, the fire had already made it into the roof.

JUMP TO FILE #102915119 The incident escalated to a five alarm response, as approximately 80-90 firefighters attacked the interior, and cut in the roof, to locate and extinguish all of the fire extension. Investigators have determined that the fire began in a wall between two second-floor units. After spending most of the operation on

the roof, the fire was isolated to the one half of the building, which sat over 16 units. All of 16 of those units will be left uninhabitable as a result of the power having to be shut off; leaving between 18 and 22 residents displaced. Though a cause has not been determined, fire investigators are looking into it as accidental in nature.There were no reported injuries as a result of this incident. - JASON EVANS

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Large workshop fire for Lockport

A call for a structure fire came in around 6:30 p.m. on October 19th, from Market St. and Business 35 with visible black smoke showing. It was a large workshop with plenty of stuff in it. Someone in the area said that there was a lot of popping going on before we arrived. FVFD was called at the same time for assistance. Large oak trees in the back yard of the neighbor’s house caught on fire, and in another area, a big pile of cut wood caught on fire and burned. We cleared the scene a little after 8:30 p.m. Thanks again for traffic control by RPD and ACSO, medical standby from Allegiance EMS, and rehab support from the Rockport Fire Corp.

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Fall, 2015



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1ST Responder Newspaper - TX



San Antonio unveils 9/11 memorial 343 New York City firefighters were killed on Sept. 11, 2001, and several dozen more have died since as a result of being exposed to dangerous toxins during the recovery efforts at Ground Zero. The San Antonio Fire Department on Friday, September 11, 2015 unveiled a one-of-a-kind 9/11 Memorial, which pays tribute to those heroes who paid the ultimate sacrifice.

JUMP TO FILE #110515110 The memorial stands 7’ x 6’5” and is now housed in the south lobby on the second floor of the San Antonio Public Safety Headquarters. This unique memorial was constructed by SAFD firefighters from Fire Station 11 B Shift and

incorporates an actual piece of steel from the World Trade Center that was gifted to us by the Fire Department of New York. This memorial will serve as a daily reminder of our FDNY brothers who were killed that day and will help ensure that we never forget. - SAN ANTONIO FD


Tractor sparks fire

On September 30th, a farm tractor sparked a fire that engulfed several acres of brush land and ignited several bales of hay. It is believed that the farm equipment struck a rock and sent out the spark that started the fire. The area was very dry and the flames spread throughout the brushy area quickly. Responding departments were Whitney, Peoria, Aquilla, Woodbury, Covington, 2604 and White Bluff.

Yesterday morning, we experienced a structure fire that should have been fairly routine, but turned out to be anything but routine. At 7:47 a.m., the Central Nyack Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched to a possible structure fire. Central Nyack Fire Chief Michael Healy responded immediately from his home. Chief Healy is a veteran firefighter with 45 years as a firefighter, one of our long time fire instructors with 20 years in the chief ranks. Chief Healy arrived on the scene and reported heavy smoke and fire showing from the first floor of a two-story wood frame residential building. The fire building appeared to be a typical one-family residence in good condition, with a manicured front lawn and flower beds. The chief noticed a large number of civilians in front of the building and was told by one of them that a handicapped person was trapped. When he asked where, the resident responded, "upstairs." Six firefighters were immediately sent to search the second floor above the fire; and despite a thorough search of the sprawling second floor, no victim was located. While the search was underway, the fire was being attacked and quickly knocked down. Within a few minutes, Chief Healy received a radio transmission from his son Shawn (another son, Mike was also at the scene) saying they had found the victim on the first floor. It was apparent that the victim was deceased. There was no way that she could have been rescued due to her location in the most involved area of the fire. As the smoke cleared, it became apparent why the "upstairs" comment had been made. This former one-family home had been illegally converted to a four-family multiple dwelling and did not meet the codes for a multiple dwelling. The cellar had been converted to house two separate apartments. One of the tenants living in the

cellar had made the statement about the victim being trapped "upstairs." The firefighters also discovered separate apartments on the first and second floors. Conditions in the cellar were particularly dangerous to the residents and any firefighter attempting to enter it. To gain entrance to the larger cellar apartment, one had to bend over to go through an approximately 4'6" opening. Firefighters observed bedrooms with no windows and no second means of egress with only one exit for both apartments. In addition, there were very low ceilings; the gas fired boiler and hot water heater were illegally installed in a bedroom; tiny cellar windows were the only ones in the cellar apartments, and they had air conditioner units in them; no working smoke or CO detectors were found, and numerous other violations were noted. When the chief and the investigators looked at the overall situation, everyone agreed that it was a miracle that only one resident had died. If the fire had started a few hours earlier or in the cellar, the tragedy could have been much worse with numerous residents trapped. This fire is just one of many we have experienced in illegally converted buildings throughout our county. Thousands of residents are residing in substandard housing. In this case, experienced fire fighters were sent to search above a working fire based upon information from a well meaning resident, who should not have been living with others "downstairs" in a cellar that is not considered habitable space as per state codes. An experienced chief and quality firefighters helped this one from going very bad. In recognition of the major hazards to our firefighters and residents (in this case several children, including a one-month old infant), we have created an Illegal Housing Task Force and have been working with civilian groups to attack the problem. I will write more on this very effective method for addressing illegal buildings next month.

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

Fall, 2015


Blood & Fire Vendetta ON THE BOOK SHELF

by John Malecky


Structure fire in Downtown Dallas At 9:58 a.m. on September 21st, Dallas Fire-Rescue responded to a 911 call for a structure fire at the Avalon Projects, located at 899 North Stemmons Freeway (on the service road), just outside of Downtown Dallas. At the time of the call, a tall column of black smoke could be seen on approach. Firefighters arrived to find a small fire, located in a room being used for storage, in

JUMP TO FILE #092115135 the building's parking garage. Approximately 200 people were evacuated from the nine-story building, but no one was injured during the process. While the fire was quickly extinguished, most of the efforts were focused on evacuating the massive

amount of smoke the fire generated. Command deployed the "Super Fan" to expedite this process so building management could begin the process of accommodating its tenants. This investigation will fall under the jurisdiction of the Dallas County Fire Marshal. The cause has yet to be determined. - JASON EVANS

Blood & Fire: Vendetta By K.M. Bozarth Available from Price: Paperback $15.43 Kindle: $3.43 I read this book, which is soft cover measuring 5 ½ inches by 8 ½ inches. It has 24 chapters within 209 pages and is the first of what is to become a series of novels by this author. The author has been a firefighter since the year 2000 and has worked in volunteer and paid fire departments in Burlington County, New Jersey. This county is New Jersey’s largest in area and spans from the Atlantic Ocean to the

Delaware River, which separates the state from Pennsylvania. The book is fiction, but is based on her personal experiences. Being a female, one can imagine the obstacles she faced within her career working in what for many years was considered a “man’s job.!” In a very unbiased way, she writes about being treated differently by different individuals in her crew and in the department, particularly by an officer in command of her company. She is married and her husband has a different public safety type job. Both go through trying times from the demand of their jobs in which PTSD can become a by product. For her character, she takes you through station life, training sessions and emergency calls and helps you develop the imagery of being right there in their midst. It is a good read for both genders, whether you are an emergency service worker or not.

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Take the “pressure” off! FIREFIGHTER FITNESS Lori Ann Hodgkinson


On the heels of Halloween and Thanksgiving and the busy holiday season fast approaching, many of us are soon to abandon our regular exercise routine. Unfortunately, in many cases fitness routines are replaced with poor eating patterns laden with sugar, salt, cholesterol and fat. Less exercise and increased food consumption is a double whammy! Many of us are well schooled in the danger of consuming excessive amounts of high fat food. Although it is important to limit the amount of fat you consume, many of us are unaware of the negative effects a diet high in sugar and salt can have on our weight and our health. One such negative effect is high blood pressure (hypertension). High blood pressure has long been linked to increased risk of heart attack, stroke and more. Before you trade in your exercise program for a holiday season of poor eating, consider the long term consequences. A recent client presented as overweight, and newly diagnosed with high blood pressure (hypertension). His physician not only recommended weight loss, but also wanted to prescribe multiple medications. Since this was a recent diagnosis (which did not present at a doctor’s visit in previous months) the physician agreed to give the client an opportunity to manage his blood pressure on his own. (Please note, this decision can only be made by a physician and is dependent on the severity of the hypertension and condition of the individual.) Although it is possible to wean off medication as blood pressure is managed over time, in many cases blood pressure medication continues long term and sometimes lifelong. My client (Bob) wanted to avoid medication if possible, so he set out to manage his blood pressure naturally. The physician cleared him for mild to moderate exercise (based upon the individual), and sent him on his way with an appointment to return in three weeks for reevaluation. Upon first interview with Bob, I learned that a typical breakfast for him was a sugared cereal and a glass of chocolate milk. Lunch (since he was on the go) was typically pizza, a hot dog or sometimes a soup and sandwich. Additionally, on average there were two to three glasses of iced tea or other soft drink per day. Snacks were often chips, pretzels and an occasional candy bar. Dinner, was much better, a lean meat – starch and a vegetable. Alcohol consumption was occasional. Since, bodyweight, as well as sodium, caffeine and alcohol consumption (and of course saturated fat and cholesterol) all significantly affect blood pressure, Bob’s daily

food/beverage choices seemed the best place to start. Along with a mild exercise program, Bob agreed to make some dietary changes. A dietician can be of significant benefit, so after checking with one, here is what we managed to workout. The sugary cereal at breakfast was replaced with shredded wheat or oatmeal (read the label, zero sugar zero sodium). Bob added a ½ of a banana and ¼ cup of (raw, unsalted) almonds. The chocolate milk had to go (sugar and caffeine). Instead, he had a cup of decaf coffee with just a splash of flavored creamer (less than 1 gm saturated fat, zero sodium, zero cholesterol and 2.5 gms sugar). He also added a multi-vitamin daily. His mid morning snack was an orange. Lunch was more typically grilled chicken or turkey on light bread (sodium is only 70mg/slice as opposed to most breads which contained closer to 200mgs/slice). The bread didn’t seem to taste much different, was really just a bit thinner than most, which probably accounted for the lower calories and sodium content. Later day snacks were unsalted popcorn or ¼ a cup almonds. Dinner remained pretty much the same. He paid more attention to portion sizes and avoided prepackaged foods or canned vegetables since they are all loaded with sodium. Evening Snack was a “Healthy Choice” brand fudge bar. Please note these are merely a few examples of what worked for him. His diet contained a wide variety of foods. Your dietary choices should be tailored to your needs. Bob originally thought soup and salad was a healthy meal, but the labels show most canned soups contain over 600 mgs of sodium in just one serving. Many of the salad dressings are high in fat and contain 350-700mgs of sodium in just two tablespoons. That doesn’t leave room for much else if you are looking to stay between 1500 and 2300mgs of sodium per day. (see the DASH eating plan, a dietary plan for reducing blood pressure at The sugary soft drinks had to go. Bob now drinks plenty of water and naturally flavored seltzer. An occasional soft drink can be tolerated, but consuming two, three and sometimes four per day had him exceeding recommended sugar levels. Exercise, was four days per week for 30 minutes. Considering hypertension, workouts were mostly cardiovascular in nature. We avoided overhead lifting, used light weights and did lots of circuit training. After three weeks Bob dropped ten lbs. I know we typically recommend a weight loss of only two lbs per week, but calculations showed that Bob had dropped more than four lbs of water (as per measured on a bioelectrical impedance scale) and a little more that five lbs of fat. That had him well within recommended levels. His high sodium diet had him retaining a

great deal of water and reducing his sodium intake released a good amount of water. He returned to the doctor and his blood pressure had dropped enough for the Dr. to grant him a few more weeks of self management. (Remember, the physician, and only the physician can safely make this determination.) After three additional weeks, Bob dropped another seven lbs (for a total of 17 lbs). His blood pressure was within normal range and the physician deemed no medication necessary at this time. Bob had been consuming far too much sugar, which was keeping extra weight on him. His sodium content had him retaining far too much water. Originally, the Dr. would have prescribed a diuretic along with an antihypertension medication, but Bob’s weight loss brought him success on all counts. Presently, as this holiday season approaches, he continues to lose weight, at a somewhat slower rate. Bob will check in with the dietician for further recommendations and eventually some maintenance advice. His blood pressure and weight are within healthy ranges. He is still medication “free”. He continues to exercise, and we constructed a plan to fit his holiday schedule. As of our last workout, he reports that he is not going hungry and is not feeling deprived at all. By reading the labels, he has been able to make better choices and avoid unnecessary food traps. He has worked some of his favorite, and less healthy food choices into the mix, but has limited portions and also managed to find tasty satisfying versions. Next time you are in the food store, pick up a few of your favorite foods and read the label. Check the fats, and saturated fats. Compare the sodium and sugar levels. Not only will you be surprised how high some of them are, I bet you will also notice a significant difference in many brands of the same product. Be sure to pay close attention to serving size as often they are much smaller than we think. For more information on label reading go to: For more information on daily sugar intake go to: wsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm 455837.htm For more information regarding sodium intake go to: 393.htm For further information on reducing blood pressure through nutrition go to: for the “DASH” diet I referred to earlier. Get your holiday exercise plan in place and by January you can be enjoying a Happy Healthy New Year! More than ever, a physician’s approval is the place to start.

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

FIREFIGHTER PROFILES If your department has photos you would like to see in our “Firefighter Profiles” feature, please upload them on our website, or email them to


Lt. Charles Sherrill joined the Abilene Fire Department in September of 1989. He is certified as an EMT-Intermediate, Advanced Firefighter, Fire Instructor I, and Fire Officer I. Charles is currently assigned as the Lieutenant on Ladder 6 C shift with the rescue program.

Submitting photos and press releases is EASY! Register at to begin posting directly. Prefer emails? Email your press release and photos directly to

Fall, 2015



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1ST Responder Newspaper - TX


Fire departments assist swept away school bus

San Antonio Rescue 51 assisted Helotes and Leon Valley FD in Helotes on the morning of October 30th with a school bus that was swept away by rushing water off of Lookout Road.



Two teens have died in a horrific school bus crash in the 7200 block of South Loop East (South Interstate Highway 610 East) around 7 a.m. on Sept. 15. COURTESY PHOTO

Two Houston teens dead after school bus crash Houston, TX. Two teens died in a horrific school bus crash in the 7200 block of South Loop East (South Interstate Highway 610 East) around 7 a.m. on Sept. 15. Houston Police officials said that one female victim was pronounced dead at the scene. A second female victim was transported to Memorial Hermann Hospital where she was pronounced dead. The identities of both juvenile victims are pending verification by the Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences. Houston Police DepartmentVehicular Crimes Division Sergeant G. Lopez and Officer B. Collins reported the following in-

JUMP TO FILE #091515127 formation ; “ The female driver of a gold Buick LeSabre was traveling eastbound on the South Loop when she made an unsafe lane change and struck a Houston Independant School District bus, also traveling eastbound. The impact caused the school bus to veer to the right and strike the guardrail. The bus then went off the overpass and onto the roadway below. “ Police Officials said that one female passenger in the school bus died at the scene. A second female passenger on the bus was trans-

ported to the hospital where she died. Two bus passengers, one male and one female, were transported to area hospitals with nonlife-threatening injuries. The driver of the school bus was transported to Ben Taub General Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The driver of the Buick, who was not injured, showed no signs of impairment. She was questioned and released at the scene. No charges have been filed at this time, as the investigation is continuing. - BECKY ROBINETTE WRIGHT


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Fire Prevention poster contest

The San Antonio Fire Department received 525 posters from some very talented students. Elementary, middle and high school students from 63 different schools throughout Bexar County participated in this year’s Fire Prevention Month Poster Contest. We have now begun the daunting task of choosing the best of the best. This year’s theme is “Hear the Beep Where You Sleep,” a simple message with vital importance. Posters have been judged on artwork, neatness, originality and the manner in which they portray this life saving fire prevention/education message. Prizes were awarded to those students who place 1st through 3rd in their respective age divisions at the SAFD’s Health & Safety Fair on October 24th.

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

Fall, 2015






Fall, 2015

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

Fall, 2015



Fall, 2015

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX


Dog saved by Crockett firefighters On October 14th at 6:31 p.m., the Crockett Fire Department responded to a reported structure at 309 Trailwood. Latexo VFD also responded by automatic aid. CFD's first engine arrived in three and a half minutes to find that everyone had gotten out except for a small dog. Fire had already vented through the roof with heavy

JUMP TO FILE #102115114 smoke in house and attic. After a rapid exterior knockdown, we went inside and searched with thermal imaging. This resulted in finding the pet that had been overcome by smoke and bringing it

outside to it's owner, after being in fresh air some, it seemed to be doing OK. The fire was extinguished from the inside and smoke was ventilated out of house. The majority of contents and furnishings were saved along with the house. - CROCKETT FD



Fall, 2015

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX


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Denning, Tarlton, Denning's mom, Tarlton's husband



Grass fire in Hillsboro

On October 2, Hillsboro was called to a large grass fire behind a housing addition and near the Intermediate School. The fire spread quickly thru the mesquite filled area. Rough terrain slowed the departments down. Hillsboro was assisted by Itasca, Whitney, White Bluff, and Bynum. Hillsboro’s Police Officers are also cross trained as firefighters. Their quick response was key to getting the fire under control. The school was never in any immediate danger and therefore was not evacuated.

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SAFD recognizes a hero In the presence of her peers and several San Antonio Fire Department representatives, SFC LaJvonna Tarlton was presented with Fire Chief Charles Hoods’ Challenge Coin and a certificate of appreciation for the life saving measures she took in performing CPR on SAFD Arson Investigator Don Denning. On August 15, 2015, while exercising at a local sports complex, Denning suffered a heart attack. Tarlton rushed to his side and, realizing that he was pulseless and ap-

Reflections Chaplain's Corner Didymus McHugh

This time of year, we are so busy running around. We are decorating the station and the fire apparatus for the holidays and getting ready to take Santa around for the children. Then, there is the gathering of your fire company members and a party at the station also. Oh, we forgot to mention the family. We need to pick up the presents for the children and the rest of the family members and the relatives that we may see once a year. Then comes the thought of the actual day. Do you dress up? Whose house will you celebrate at? Is it your parents’ house or your spouse’s relatives? Or, do you go to Aunt Jenny’s house or a friend’s house? Have you thought about the less fortunate? Have you bought them anything? What about the homeless? Do you really know who they are? How many veterans are homeless? Have you decided to work and feed some people? Or bring joy to those who have nobody? Just look at your members or retired members or those in the firemen’s home or local nursing home. Have you taken time to be still and just be with God? Maybe it is

JUMP TO FILE #092315107 neic, began resuscitation efforts. She continued for nearly 12 minutes awaiting the arrival of an ambulance. It is not often that our first responders find themselves on the other side of life saving efforts. In this case, the SAFD is very grateful that the Army Medic was in the right place at the right time. - DEBORAH FOSTER

time to thank God for all the blessings in your life. We forget God said that He will take care of our needs, not wants, but needs. Have you thanked Him? Yes, I understand that we go through hard times, but did we learn something from that, become stronger or more compassionate? Have you reflected and truly looked in the face of people who need help? Do you really know if it is God in disguise? Let us remember what the holidays are really about. Miracles. For Christians, it is about the miracle of our Savior being born, as a man. For the Jews, it is the miracle of the Hanukkah, which was a miraculous military victory, but a tiny cruse of oil proved more miraculous and enduring in the memory of the Jewish people. Let us reflect on the miracles that we have seen in the past year. Who lived after a bad car accident or survived a fire, or a fall, that by all means should have been dead? We do not always notice the hand of God at work around us. I challenge you to do as Psalm 46:10 states and “be still and know that I am God”. He is always here for you, not just when things seem to fall apart.Kiss your loved ones. Let them know how much they mean to you and keep coming home to them after your calls. Express now to people how much they mean to you. You will also light up their day. Merry Christmas! Happy Hanukkah! Stay safe.

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

Fall, 2015



Fall, 2015

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX


Four alarm wildland fire On October 20, 2015, Lone Oak Fire Department responded to a four alarm wildland fire off of 276 in Quinlan. It was known as the East Ridge fire. The fire was fought for a little over five hours. A total of 95 acres burned. Ten houses were threatened and all were saved. Some departments responding were Tawakoni South, East Tawakoni, West Tawakoni, Cash, Quinlan, Lone Oak, Point, Able Springs, Union Valley, Greenville, the Red Cross, AMR, Hunt Co Pct grader and the Texas Forestry Service.


Fatal motor vehicle collision

On November 1, 2015, a fatal motor vehicle collision on Highway 59 and Park Rd. closed Highway 59 for most of the day just north of the Sulphur River after the crash involving a tanker truck Sunday night. Liberty Eylau, C-5, Redwater, Wake Village and Cass County Fire Departments responded the scene. An Atlanta, Texas man was killed Sunday night in wreck just north of the Sulphur River on U.S. Highway 59. According to Texas DPS fatal crash report, 52-year-old Andrew Clemenson was traveling north in a tanker truck on US-59 when 41-year-old Billy Ray Howard of Texarkana, Ark. pulled out in front of him from Park Road. According to the report, Clemenson was pronounced dead on scene at 10:36 p.m. his body was taken to the medical examiner in Dallas. Howard was transported to Wadley.

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Fall, 2015

Wildfire thwarted by county preparations Bastrop, TX. Bastrop is no stranger to the dangers and devastation that wildfire can bring to a community. One weekend proved how reducing overgrown vegetation and implementing other mitigating efforts can decrease JUMP TO FILE# the severity of wild- 091715119 fires—potentially saving a community from a destructive fire path. On Saturday, Sept. 12, along State Highway 71 in Bastrop County, a roadside start ignited a brush fire along a fuelloaded drainage area just to the west of the already fire-affected Tahitian Village subdivision. The wildfire was burning in heavy pine, yaupon and cedar trees, exhibiting what fire experts call very active fire behavior. Flames ran through understory fuels and torched in the pine and cedar canopy of the trees. As the wildfire traveled west, rapidly consuming brush and needle drape, the fire encountered a mulched area of land, put in by the county as a buffer zone and line of defense against such wildfires. Without the heavy fuels to burn, the wildfire dropped down out of the canopy of the trees and burned along the ground as a surface fire.

Here it lost intensity and was able to be contained by fire crews. Textbook of what the buffer zone is designed to do. “I am very pleased that we are able to be proactive in wildfire mitigation. It is my hope that never again will we have to face the tragedy of a repeat of the 2011 wildfire here in Bastrop County,” Bastrop County Emergency Management Coordinator Mike Fisher said. The mulched area is part of a fuels treatment grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, administered by the Texas Department of Emergency Management and implemented by Bastrop County just one month ago. This is only the second such grant FEMA has awarded in Texas. “This story exemplifies a battle-tested theory that proves the process works,” Texas A&M Forest Service Task Force Coordinator Rich Gray said. This process began with the county subscribing to the FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grant Program which helps communities implement hazard mitigation measures following a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration. In this case, the Bastrop County Complex Fire in 2011, which burned 34,000 acres, destroyed nearly 1,700 homes and

businesses and claimed two lives. Bastrop County follows a Texas A&M Forest Service-supported, countywide, Community Wildfire Protection Plan and uses information garnered from the Texas Wildfire Risk Assessment Portal as guidance to focus hazard mitigation efforts. The county has also partnered with TFS on mulching projects over the past five years for endangered species habitat management and complementary fuels reduction. “This is capacity building at its finest,” said Tom Boggus, state forester and director of Texas A&M Forest Service. “We try to provide research, tools, resources and opportunities for local Texas governments to use and expand upon to protect their own communities. And Bastrop County takes care of its own.” Using funds from the HMGP grant, Bastrop County identified areas along key ignition corridors. The two main areas of concern happen along the west side of the Bastrop County Complex burn scar where wildland meets homes and population and there is still concern for large wildland fires. This strategy helps the county pinpoint locations to prescribe fuels treatments. Bastrop County contracts with a pool of private companies for detailed fuel map-


A mulched area of land, where the wildfire dropped from the canopy and burned along the ground.

ping, fire behavior modeling and fuel reduction. Tahitian Village, having been identified as a high risk area for wildfire, recently conducted fuel reduction projects — potentially saving the subdivision from another damaging wildfire. “Had the area not had the fuels treatment, the pre-fuel conditions coupled with the day’s fire weather

gave the wildfire the potential to reach more than 100 acres and get into the west side of the subdivision,” Gray said. “Instead, due in large by the county’s proactive mitigation, we were able to contain the fire to about 5 acres — none of which reached people or homes.”


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Fall, 2015

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1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

Fall, 2015



Fall, 2015

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX



KIMTEK Targets Improved Fire, EMS, and Police Rescues with New Facility

KIMTEK Corporation, Vermontbased makers of MEDLITE® and FIRELITE® transport skid units, celebrated the opening of its second production facility in September. Attended by company employees, vendors, community members, and special guests representing the fire and rescue manufacturing industry, the event marked an expanded focus on fire, EMS, and police rescue markets by the company founded in 1984 by Kimball Johnson, holder of numerous U.S. patents and founder of the Westmore, Vermont Fire Department, for which he also served as fire chief. KIMTEK moved into the new facility, located in Orleans, Vermont, in May with plans to expand research, design, and production of its lines of off-road patient evacuation and fire suppression units within the domestic and international medical, fire, and rescue communities. According to Mr. Johnson, the addition of the new facility triples the space now available for company operations. The original Westmore facility will continue to house office and warehouse space as well as provide additional room to expand the company's new product design and engineering pursuits. KIMTEK office headquarters have been relocated to the Orleans facility. Darley CEO notes KIMTEK's growth and sound corporate culture Special guest and speaker Paul C. Darley, president and CEO of W.S. Darley & Co., of Illinois, manufacturers of Darley water pumps and fire apparatus, delivered remarks at the ceremony. Mr. Darley applauded the tenyear relationship between the two companies, and specifically noted that KIMTEK Corporation has grown significantly in a market that has not grown much in the last ten years.

"We're very pleased to be a small part of your success and growth,"

Mr. Darley told the assembly. "I'm a big believer that culture is what sets aside a company from all the others. You need a culture with a leader such as Kimball who gets it... who understands people, understands his customers, understands his employees, and who understands where the market is going. And with the innovative, high quality products produced here, he has actually created new markets."

Mr. Darley also recognized the family-based core values that their companies share, obvious to him, he said, while meeting company employees during his visit. He emphasized the two companies' similarities as family-owned businesses.

Mr. Johnson said the strong relationship with the Darley team has helped KIMTEK become the company it is today. He also spoke of his appreciation of company employees, some of whom are actually relatives but all of whom he thinks of as family. He recognized his workforce as consisting of committed public servants, and said, "We're celebrating the ribbon-cutting of our new facility, but in reality we are celebrating our employees and our families, for without them, none of us would be standing here today." Roots of leadership in R&D Mr. Johnson purchased the Orleans facility to expand production of the company's full line of MEDLITE® and FIRELITE® transport skid units, products he designed when, as fire chief, he saw firsthand the need for affordable, flexible transport in remote rescue locations. In fact, KIMTEK Corporation was founded as a research and development company dedicated to advances in life safety technology in the fire sciences. Today KIMTEK is the largest producer and marketer of ATV, UTV, and compact pickup truck-specific skid units for public safety agencies in the

United States. Custom designed for off-road emergency service vehicles, KIMTEK's slide-in medical, fire, and rescue skid units are now in service in all fifty states, the Department of the Interior, the National Park Service, and the U.S. Forest Service. Its ever expanding global presence is cemented with units in service for U.S. Embassies, the Department of Defense, and all branches of the U.S. Military. A certified GSA (General Services Agency) contractor, KIMTEK transport skid units are also widely used in first response for large industrial plants, mining operations, and for seashore, sports stadium, racetrack, and other recreational venues. According to Mr. Johnson, among the advantages of the new and bigger facility is a streamlined, spacious production area, improving workstation assembly and packaging efficiency. With help from a dedicated in-house machine and tool center, KIMTEK's production area stays ahead of updates in equipment technology and quickly meets its markets' growing demand for custom, specialized products. Known for exceptional quality construction and top-of-the-line

components such as pumps from Darley and Pacer, Hannay reels, and Scotty foam systems, KIMTEK's transport units are made in America. Mr. Johnson says the company's leadership in the marketplace is due to big vision and small details. "We insist on installing all aluminum tubing and diamond plate on the chassis, and we never cut corners," he said.

Protecting the protectors The needs of first responders are as varied as the terrain within their jurisdictions. Mr. Johnson sees opportunities for custom skid units nearly everywhere he goes. Some of the new products KIMTEK has in prototype are for beach rescues and specialized police team response. Mr. Johnson's plans may also include providing more accessories options to customers, simplifying their procurement of routine items such as strainers, suction hose, and nozzles. "Assuring customers of the superior quality and reliable delivery they expect from KIMTEK is paramount in all our plans for the future," he said.

A company keenly familiar with adapting to the fast-changing specifications of ATV and UTV markets, KIMTEK consistently meets needs specific to first re-

sponders with top quality, easy-touse components and attention to ergonomic details, such as installation of sturdy, stainless steel grab bars and non-slip texturing on component grips. Always aiming to support first responders as well as their mission, KIMTEK works with industry specialists to deliver options that professionals report are needed in the field. One recently launched series of new skid units features an ultra high pressure FoamPro® Turbo Stream® foam concentration injector system, specifically requested by fire professionals for UTVs and pickup trucks. After 31 years in business and expansion into a large, new manufacturing facility, KIMTEK is poised for even greater growth. "Our new space means we can indeed better explore new products serving new markets," Mr. Johnson said. "New units custom designed for military and law enforcement applications are in the works right now." The company expects to conduct field tests on these and other prototypes in development in 2016. More information about KIMTEK may be found at

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

Fall, 2015

Residential sprinklers versus firefighter safety STAYING SAFE

Chief Henry Campbell

On August 13th, the New York City Council passed legislation that requires the installation of automatic fire sprinklers in pet stores that house animals for 24 hours. The deadline for compliance is December 2016. The councilman sponsoring the bill, Councilman Corey Johnson was quoted as saying the sprinklers will save the lives of animals and firefighters who attempt to rescue them. Contrary to Mr. Johnson’s concerns for firefighters, on August 19, the New York State Codes Council, after extensive lobbying by the construction and realtors association, failed to adopt requiring the installation of residential sprinklers in all new one and two family homes. The Code will still require residential sprinklers in wood frame construction that exceeds two floors above grade. Needless to say, this was a disappointing defeat for the New York fire service, which had waged its own lobbying campaign in support of the requirement. Executive Director Jerry DeLuca of the New York State Association of Fire Chiefs (NYSAFC) commented, “I am deeply disappointed that in voting to remove residential sprinklers from the statewide building code, members of the Code Council have chosen to put profit ahead of safety.” On October 13, the Minnesota Court of Appeals overturned the residential sprinkler requirement that required the installation of residential fire sprinklers in all newly constructed homes in excess of 4500 square feet. The Builders Association of the Twin Cities had initiated the appeal of the requirement by the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry claiming the 4500 square foot size was an arbitrary figure and unsupported. The Minnesota Court issued the following statement: “We are mindful today that we are declaring a rule adopted by an administrative agency of the state invalid. We do not do so lightly, but rather thoughtfully and unanimously. Nevertheless, we are bound to apply the law.” The executive director of the Builders Association of the Twin

Cities also issued a statement: “Safety is the highest priority of Minnesota builders, and we are proud that new homes in Minnesota are among the safest in the nation. The sprinkler mandate would not have changed that safety record, but it would have made homes more expensive for Minnesota families. The Court’s decision to invalidate the sprinkler rule confirms what the public, legislature, and code experts have overwhelmingly stated all along, the sprinkler mandate is arbitrary and not supported.” A few key issues in the debate over residential fire sprinklers is the additional cost for purchasing a new home requiring sprinkler installation when most homes require smoke detectors which do an excellent job in alerting the residents to exit the home in a timely and safe manner. Also, that the older homes will not be required to have sprinkler systems thereby presenting a greater loss of life hazard than the newer constructed homes. I don’t think so! The modern constructed homes burn faster and hotter due to contents and materials and the collapse dangers are increased by the use of truss construction in floors and roofs, posing an increased life hazard to firefighting personnel. The answer to this issue is for firefighters to operate from exterior positions, avoiding any possibility of being trapped in a collapse. Over the past few years, the concern for firefighter safety has increased due to the economic climate of the nation. The reductions in staffing in many municipal departments and the decrease in volunteer firefighters could be offset to some degree by the installation of fire sprinklers in the home. It would seem that with the reduced number of firefighters, there would be a far greater justification for residential sprinklers. If all the newly constructed homes that have been built over the past 25 years had been required to have residential sprinklers installed, maybe we could face the present economic crisis and firefighter cutbacks feeling a little more secure about the safety of firefighters and the people residing in those homes. New York City Councilman Corey Johnson was concerned with not only saving lives of animals, but firefighters also. Till next time stay safe and God Bless!

For additional columns by Chief Campbell, visit our website at

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Texas A&M Forest Service employee, Bryan native receives national communications award College Station, TX. Texas A&M Forest Service Communications Manager Linda Moon received the National Association of State Foresters’ Austin Short Current Achievement Award for Communications at the NASF conference this week in Lake Tahoe, California. In order to be considered, an individual must have beneficially contributed to NASF and state forestry in general. From her commitment to communicating the importance of Texas’ natural resources to her willingness to serve on national committees, Moon has made an impact in forestry in Texas, the South and across the country. Throughout her nine-year career at TFS, Moon has strived for excellence not only in communications but in positioning the state agency as a leader in forestry and emergency response in the nation. “For her entire career with TFS, Linda has seemingly gone from one natural disaster to another — whether hurricanes, ice storms or wildland fires — and has tackled every one of those with her unique style and professionalism,” said TFS Director Tom Boggus. “On top of all that, were some very key state legislative sessions where telling the TFS story and message were absolutely crucial. Linda came through with flying colors each time.” In 2011, during Texas’ historic

JUMP TO FILE #091715121 and destructive wildfire season, Moon acted as the agency administrator overseeing public information efforts and 282 public information officers. She developed information processes, social media guidelines, conducted media relations for incident management and led wildfire prevention efforts by acquiring highprofile personalities — including Nolan Ryan and four Big Twelve Conference football coaches — to deliver prevention messages. “The devastating fire season of 2011 thrust Texas into the national spotlight, and Linda carried the TFS brand with grace, and seemingly with ease, to leverage the disaster into a truly teachable moment for the entire country,” said Wendy Burnett, chair of Southern Group of State Foresters’ Communications Committee. Serving as head of communications and marketing for TFS, Moon also took on additional roles in several forestry-related associations. Most notably was her role as communications committee chair for the South’s leading group of forestry experts. Here she headed the rebranding efforts for the Southern Group of State Foresters, leading the association into a new era of forestry with a

fresh look. Moon also was instrumental in the successful launch of both the Texas and Southern Wildfire Risk Assessment Portals. Each internetaccessible tool is a suite of applications used across 13 southern states to help homeowners and communities determine wildfire risk and take measures to protect themselves. “Linda’s commitment to her work continually provides leadership and inspiration for her counterparts in other states. She has on numerous occasions offered her work as a template for other states to follow. By providing her marketing plan for TxWRAP to our committee, we effortlessly introduced SouthWRAP to our respective southern states,” Burnett said. “For all of her hard work, guidance and support she is truly worthy of this award.” Beyond Texas and the Southern region of the U.S., Moon has made an impact nationally. As the communications and marketing chair for the All Hazards Incident Management Team Association for two years, she conducted market analysis which led to its rebranding and current marketing efforts. She was also asked to speak at the National Agricultural Alumni Development Association conference where she discussed the importance of forestry, state forestry agencies and conser-

TFS Communications Manager Linda Moon with TFS Director Tom Boggus after receiving the Austin Short Current Achievement Award for Communications. JESSICA JACKSON

vation and protection of natural resources for a group of over 200 attendees from over 70 colleges across the nation. “I believe that anyone can make a difference from anywhere. You don’t have to be in a national organization or in a national position to impact on a national level, affect change or further forestry messages,” Moon said. Moon graduated from Texas A&M University in 1999 with a bachelor’s degree in speech communications and minor in journalism. She also led the development of the TFS centennial exhibit at the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum in College Station, where tens of thousands of visitors have the opportunity to experience the world of forestry and importance of conservation and protection through Nov. 8. She is an active member of Texas

Forestry Association and has been for the last five years. The NASF Current Achievement Awards are presented annually to one or more deserving state foresters, members of a state forester's staff or individuals or organizations who partner in the protection and sustainable management of America’s forests. “Linda strongly believes in the mission of state forestry agencies and looks for opportunities to spread our message at all levels — local, state, regional and national,” Boggus said. “She epitomizes everything the Austin Short Communication Award stands for and richly deserves this recognition and appreciation from the National Association of State Foresters. Congratulations, Linda Moon!” - JESSICA JACKSON


1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

Fall, 2015



Deputy Chief of Operations in Lubbock

Lubbock Fire Rescue congratulates Shaun Fogerson on his appointment to Deputy Chief of Operations. Shaun joined the fire department in September of 1992, just completing his 23rd year of service. Shaun has most recently served the department as a Battalion Chief. Before Shaun joined Lubbock Fire Rescue, he served in the United States Marine Corps Reserves. During his service, he served tours of duty in Desert Shield and Desert Storm.

Texas A&M Forest Service awards $15.7 million in grant funds


First Priority Emergency Vehicles acquires key assets of Odyssey Specialty Vehicles

Manchester, NJ. First Priority Emergency Vehicles, a recognized leader in emergency and specialty vehicle solutions, announces the acquisition of key assets of Odyssey Specialty Vehicles, a 35-year-old innovator of emergency medical, fire, rescue and law enforcement vehicles. The production of Odyssey products will be located at First Priority's state-of-the art manufacturing facility in Flanders, New Jersey. Robert J. Freeman, President of First Priority Emergency Vehicles and CEO of First Priority Global noted "Odyssey brings a strong heritage of innovation to the First Priority family of products. This is a perfect match for First Priority's proven track record of manufacturing expertise and superlative customer service. Across the nation, Odyssey and First Priority products are used daily by American heroes in their life saving and property preserving missions. We are grateful for their sacrifices and proud to partner with them by providing the tools necessary to insure the public safety of our nation and its families".

Kenneth Rudnicky, First Priority's Flanders Production Manager stated, "Odyssey Specialty Vehicles is consistently recognized by first responders across the US and worldwide for technical innovation and functional design. First Priority Emergency Vehicles has the operational capabilities and manufacturing leadership to expand the Odyssey Specialty Vehicles brand dramatically while maintaining Odyssey's longstanding commitment to quality. " For additional information, visit First Priority at and Odyssey Specialty Vehicles at For immediate assistance, contact First Priority at (800) 526-5106. About First Priority Global

First Priority Global, LLC is an international leader in emergency and specialty vehicle manufacturing and distribution, including fire fighting, emergency medical, rescue, command and law enforcement applications. In addition, First Priority offers the nation's largest variety of environmentally-friendly school buses. With offices in New Jersey, North Carolina, California and Beijing, First Priority serves America coastto-coast, as well as more than 30 countries worldwide. First Priority is a proud recipient of the prestigious President's E-Award for its contribution to the American economy through exporting of premium-grade American made products worldwide.

College Station, TX. Intense wildfire seasons and life-altering emergencies call for better equipment and more training for our firefighters on the frontline. With over 85 percent of Texas fire departments being operated by volunteers, funding for essential equipment and training can be hard to come by. The Texas Legislature allocates funding to Texas A&M Forest Service for pass-through grants to Texas volunteer fire departments in an effort to help them better protect lives and property. This year, the agency received $24.3 million to distribute to volunteer fire departments through the Rural Volunteer Fire Department Assistance Program. On Oct. 7, the program awarded $15.7 million in its first of three meetings for the 2016 fiscal year. “No other state understands or supports their first responders like Texas. By increasing the Rural VFD Assistance Program grant fund, the Texas Legislature drove home that point and we are extremely grateful,” Texas A&M Forest Service Director Tom Boggus said. The program allows TFS to build the capacity of communities by providing funds to volunteer fire departments to purchase life-saving equipment, including firefighting vehicles, fire and rescue equipment, protective clothing, dry-hydrants, firefighting training and training aids. “We were honored to present the awards at our first meeting, knowing that they will make a tremendous difference in the protection of life and property,” Jason Keiningham, capacity building department head. “These grants provide firefighters with much needed equipment to more effectively respond to a variety of emergencies.”

JUMP TO FILE #103015106 Established by the 77th Legislature in 2001, the program has provided funds for 1,630 engines, 4,166 grants for fire and rescue equipment, 4,024 grants for protective gear and 17,997 training request for 64,268 firefighters, awarding more than $213 million total since its inception. While we are extremely proud of this accomplishment, there is a big job left to do with $155 million in unmet needs. All chartered, nonprofit VFDs operated by its members are eligible, and any part-paid, part-volunteer fire department with 20 or fewer paid members is eligible to receive grants through the Rural VFD Assistance Program. “Time after time I’ve been told by proud and thankful fire chiefs across the state that this was the first brand new fire truck the department has ever had and what a difference it made in their ability to protect Texans,” Boggus said. “We are proud to take part in the Rural VFD Program and will continue to support our first responders.” With the increase in state funding, more departments have the opportunity to get life-saving equipment and training, better protecting communities threatened by wildfire. Additionally, TFS will offer a pilot program which will fully cover the cost of adding a slip-on unit to trucks acquired through the Department of Defense Firefighter Property Program — a federallysourced program operated by TFS that provides excess military equipment to fire departments and emergency service providers. - JESSICA JACKSON


Fall, 2015

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

FACES OF TEXAS’ EMERGENCY SERVICES To see your action shots in the newspaper upload them on our website or email them to


Members of the LFR Honor Guard and LFR Pipes and Drums at the annual IAFF Fallen Firefighters Memorial Ceremony in Colorado Springs Colorado.

Hillsboro battled a large grass fire on October 2nd behind a housing addition and near a school

Recently Frisco firefighter/paramedic Andrew Valentini, was part of a four member team (including two fire department members from Plano) who participated in the International Tactical Combat Casualty Care Competition held in Longrano, Spain FRISCO FD


Congratulations to the 35 cadets from Class 117, who will graduate from the Austin Fire Department's Cadet Academy this morning and begin their "rookie" season! We're so proud of all of you. Welcome to the AFD family!



Members from SAFD Technical Rescue 11s and 51s particpate in the Texas Rescue Competition 2015


Frisco Fire Department held a 9/11 Memorial Ceremony to honor those lost.

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX


Fall, 2015

Smoke fills downtown Hillsboro Smoke filled the downtown Hillsboro area on October 23, 2015. Employees from a nearby building were working late that evening, and reported smoke coming from the building behind them. Hillsboro Fire/Rescue responded, and Itasca and Whitney were called to assist. The assisting departments were stood down after Hillsboro made

JUMP TO FILE #110915108 entry into the building and discovered the fire could be easily extinguished. Hillsboro was on scene for about an hour. - SHERI HEMRICK

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Station 26 takes on water Houston Fire Department Station 26 family located on the City's Southeast side had to deal with the water first hand as seen here in these pictures. Nonetheless, the guys

made the best of it and are busy readying the station for continued use while continuing to make calls to serve the Citizens of Houston. - HOUSTON FD

Submitting photos and

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For Sale 2014 Kymco 500 side by side 4×4 UTV. It has 26 miles on it. Asking price $6,500.00 OBO For more info call 845-238-4228 Email:

20’ Rescue 1® Walk-Around Demo Available for Immediate Delivery. Spartan Metro Star MFD-2015 chassis, Cummins ISL 450 HP diesel engine, seating for crew of six. 20’ all extruded aluminum body, upper storage compartments. Curb side roof access lift-up stairway, absorbent compartment with electric re-loader and dispenser, 9000 lbs. portable winch with three receiver positions. Participating co-op purchasing programs: GSA, H-GAC, and New Jersey State Contract. Contact Mike Marquis (800) 752-8786, (732) 223-1411 in New Jersey, or

For Sale First Priority Renaissance Wheeled Coach CitiMedic Type III on a 2014 Chevrolet G 3500 Diesel Chassis $101,995. LonPlate Fllor, FPEV RCT Electrical System Whelen M Series LED Emergency Lighting, Eberhard Handles Exterior Compartment Bedliner Paint, Interior LED Lighting And Much More!!! For additional information or photos, email or call 732-657-1104.

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Fall, 2015

1ST Responder Newspaper - TX

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1st Responder Texas Fall Edition  

1st Responder Texas Fall Edition