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VOLUME 11, NO. 8

Serving Fire, Rescue & EMS Heroes In NY State


JUNE 2018

Story on page 6 -Fire News photo by Peter Barber

Fire News Welcomes Everyone to the PA Fire Expo Visit us at Booth 704 North Hall – New York State Edition –

Fire News, June 2018, Page 3

In this issue... Buffalo 2-Alarmer

Crews were alerted for a fire on Northumberland Avenue. See story on page 5

House Destroyed in Hopewell

The Hopewell Fire Department was toned out for a reported house fire on State Road 488. See story on page 8

Mount Pleasant 2-Alarmer Firefighters from the Thornwood Fire Department were dispatched to Franklin Avenue in Mt. Pleasant for a house fire.

See story on page 15

4 Injured in Glenmont MVA

The Selkirk Fire Department responded to an MVA on Route 144 at Glenmont Road. See story on page 17

A Service for New York State Firefighters and EMS Heroes 146 South Country Road, Bellport, NY 11713

FRANK C. TROTTA, Publisher TIM EDWARDS, Executive Editor DENNIS WHITTAM, Editor GARY P. JOYCE, Asst. Editor MARIE TROTTA, Vice President, Production/Sales LYNN SEDLER, Art Director CLIFF CHIESA, Production Manager Advertising Sales: BARBARA CONNOLLY Graphic Artist: GREGORY JONES CONTRIBUTORS: Andrew Aguilar, Chris Aldous, Jeff Ambroz, Peter Barber, Kevin Barry, John Bashaw, Bill Bennett, Tom Bierds, Jeff Couch, Chris Creighton, David Denniston, Rick Douglas, Brian Duddy, Stan Dybus, John Falcone, Ken Flynn, Joe Fortunato, Eli Gill, Mark Gillen, Carol Greene, Tom Heffernan Sr., Greg Herman, Matt Hodge, Steve Hodgekiss, Robert Holley, Daniel Imfield, Andy Jarchin, Bill Johnson, Mark Johnson, Chris Kalisak, Charlie Keller, Jon Kemp, Gordon Kotars, David R. LaRocco, Stephen Lenz, Joshua Long, Mike Messar, Ralph Miele, Albert Mignone, John Miller, Martin E. Miller, Lloyd Mitchell, Brian Natoli, Carleton Raab, Robert Reynolds, Lauren Rivera, Stephen Schaefer, Deborah Schweikert, Tom Shand, John Shaw, Sharon Siegel, Robert Simpson, Joe Sperber, Bryan Sypniewski, Karen Todd, Kyle Townsend, Joe Turner, Michael VanDerLieth, Lori Washburn, D.B. Weimer, Stephen White.


Coldenham Battles 2-Alarmer

A two-alarm fire broke out on Route 52 in the Coldenham Fire District in a two-story apartment. See story on page 18

Obituary: FDNY's Paul R. Tokarski

A funeral was held for FDNY Firefighter Paul R. Tokarski, of Ladder Company 164.

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PLUS: Editorial . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 4 Special Features . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 14 Business Directory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 20 Classifieds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 21

Letters to the Editor, byline articles, and columns represent the opinions of the writers and photographers and are not necessarily the views of the Fire News. We reserve the right to edit all of the above. We are not responsible for errors in advertisements beyond the cost of advertising space. Copy submitted is subject to editing for space requirements. The placing of an advertisement in this publication does not constitute endorsement. Contents are copyrighted. Editorial and advertising copy cannot be reproduced without written permission from the publisher. Fire News is published monthly by Fire News Inc, with corporate offices at 146 South Country Road, Bellport, NY 11713.

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From the Editor’s Desk Dennis Whittam, Editor

Social Media in the Fire Service I hope you realize that Social Media is here to stay. Seventy-six percent of our friends in government reported social media enabled them to have more meaningful interactions with their constituents. We saw the use of social media become a regular tool in the 2016 election campaign. Unlike past campaigns, social media effectively helped both candidates reach audiences across the nation at all times. Social media is not new. Blake Scott wrote an article that was published in Fire Engineering in 2013. He stated, “Social media has changed the world, and now the fire service must make a choice: adapt to the new environment or face some unpleasant consequences in the years to come.” The use of Instagram, Twitter and Facebook have become an integral part of every activity that goes on in your department. It is no secret that I am a fan of using Facebook. My department has strict rules that the membership adheres to governing the use of social media. Our social media policy was put together by one of our chiefs. The policy was thoroughly explained to the membership. I am privileged to be my department’s photographer and Public Information Officer. As soon as I get home

from a major call, I write a brief explanation of what happened and share it, along with a photo or two with our community. Community interaction and comments are overwhelmingly positive. I should add that my chiefs trust my decisions and are extremely supportive of what I do. Let’s face it, the public deserves to know what has happened in their community. The use of social media cuts down on inaccurate rumors and ultimately has rallied our community in support of their fire department. If we have a call that is serious, our community knows to go to our Facebook page to find out what happened. Occasionally we have to remind a member that comments, and photos are my job. Our members know that they can share whatever their PIO places on social media. As an active PIO at a scene, we welcome the media. The chief has enough to do at a working fire. The PIO can handle the media by giving them enough accurate information so that they can do their job. Their job has been in existence since the early 18th century. If you want a truthful story about what happened at your call, give the media the facts. Yes, there will be “fake news,” however it has been my experience that the local papers

are on your side. Give them the accurate facts so that they can write accurate stories that compliment your department. Inaccurate stories usually come about when no one talks to the media and they are forced to ask bystanders for statements that may be inaccurate, at best. For the last few years, Fire News was recognized by the Press Club of Long Island for the Best Use of Social Media. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, so that you can get an idea of how powerful social media can be. …Dennis

Fire News, June 2018, Page 5

Buffalo 2-Alarmer

Astoria All-Hands

On March 21, 2018, crews were alerted for a fire on Northumberland Avenue. Engine 31 arrived to 2-1/2 story dwelling with a well involved second floor. Truck 14 reported the attic fully involved and extending into 2-side exposure. B-43 requested the balance of a second alarm due to heavy fire conditions and B-56 (Division) pulled all crews out of primary building for defensive ops. - Fire News photo by Donald Kilianski

FDNY firefighters in the Astoria section of Queens battled and all-hands blaze in an occupied multiple dwelling on 35th Street on April 30, 2018. Heavy fire was showing out the front windows of the third floor on arrival. An aggressive interior attack by the first-due engine company quickly knocked down the main body of fire. - Fire News photo by

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Cover Story

Flames Gut Rensselaer Apartment Complex

On April 24, 2018, a massive three-alarm fire gutted a row of apart- control the fast moving fire. Two firefighters sustained minor ment complexes on First Avenue. Ladder trucks from Rensselaer, injuries fighting the blaze. - Fire News photo by Peter Barber Clinton Heights and East Greenbush were called and utilized to

Manchester Responds to Trailer Fire

On March 26, 2018, the Manchester Fire Department, along with several mutual aid departments, responded to a trailer fire on Route 96. The fire, which was at the Limestone Mobile Home Park, destroyed a trailer and damaged two additional trailer homes. - Fire News photo by John Greco

Fire News, June 2018, Page 7

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House Destroyed in Hopewell

Flames Cause Traffic Jam in Winona Lake

On April 5, 2018, the Hopewell Fire Department was toned out for a house fire on State Road 488 near Petit Road. Several people were able to escape the flames that destroyed the home. It appeared that the fire may have been accidentally set by a child who was in the bathroom of the home. Fire departments from Clifton Springs, Shortsville and Seneca Castle operated at the scene, while the Cheshire Fire Department stood by at Hopewell Station 2. - Fire News photo by John Greco

Firefighters from Winona Lake were called out for a working car on the New York State Thruway. Firefighters from Orange Lake assisted, and the call caused a major traffic jam. - Fire News photo by Vincent Dominick

Fire News, June 2018, Page 9

Car Fire Threatens Home

On the evening of March 26, 2018, the Thiells and Stony Point Fire against the structure, a two-car garage. Crews quickly extinguished Departments were dispatched to a reported structure fire on Birch the fire and overhauled the exterior siding of the garage. - Fire News photos by Kenny Flynn Lane. Upon arrival, it was discovered that it was actually a car fire

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Three Times Is No Charm

On February 26, 2018, Buffalo firefighters were alerted for a house fire from a vacant 1-1/2 story house. Crews went into a defensive fire in the vicinity of Watson and William Streets, the third house attack, and an extra engine was also requested. - Fire News photos by Donald Kilianski fire on the street since October. Engine Company 3 arrived to heavy

Fire News, June 2018, Page 11

Dozens Displaced by Yonkers 2-Alarm

Two firefighters were injured in a two-alarm fire in the Nodine Hill section of Yonkers on March 31, 2018. The fire began in the firstfloor rear on Chestnut Street. The first-due engine company arrived to fire showing from rear windows which was quickly extending to the floors above. Command transmitted a second alarm shortly

after arrival and encountered extension to one attached exposure. About 50 firefighters knocked the fire down in about 30 minutes and it was placed under control in just over two hours. Two cats were killed and a dozen residents were displaced. - Fire News photos by Mike Messar

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5-Story 3-Alarmer in Flushing

FDNY companies battled a three-alarm blaze in an occupied multiple dwelling on 41st Avenue in the Flushing section of Queens on April 16, 2018. The fire may have started on the third or fourth floor of the seven-story building but spread through the pipe recess-

es as far as the top floor. Firefighters were seen utilizing fire escape stretches to reach the upper floors. No injuries were reported. - Fire News photos by and Lloyd Mitchell

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Flames Spread in Niskayuna

In April, Niskayuna Fire District 2 firefighters were called to a report of a chimney fire and flames in the rear of a home on Rosendale Road. A second alarm was sounded, bringing extra firefighters and apparatus from Niskayuna Fire District 1 and Stanford Heights. Flames quickly spread into the attic and operations went defensive. - Fire News photos by Peter Barber

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Man Burned in Kingston Blaze

On March 6, 2018, a three-alarm structure fire occurred in the City the fire in the attic. The patient was airlifted to Westchester Medical of Kingston. Firefighters successfully removed a semi-conscious vic- Center with burns. Firefighters had the fire under control in - Fire News photos by Jack Bechtold tim from a stairway who appeared to have been attempting to fight approximately 15 minutes.

Fire News, June 2018, Page 15

Mount Pleasant 2-Alarmer

On April 8, 2018, firefighters from the Thornwood Fire Department were dispatched to Franklin Avenue in Mt. Pleasant for a house fire. Crews arrived to heavy fire out the front door of the home, pulled lines and went to work. They were faced with heavy fire on the first floor running up the D side into the second floor and attic. One civilian had to jump from roof of the porch to get to safety, and a dog

was also rescued. The fire took almost 90 minutes to get under control. Thornwood Chief Frank Kolodzinski said it appeared the fire started on the delta side of the structure when someone threw a cigarette into the trash on the outside of the building sparking a fire which grew in size catching the vinyl siding, then the home. - Fire News photos by

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Car Crashes into Schenectady School

2 Dead After Glenville Head-on

On March 21, 2018, Schenectady firefighters responded to an alarm activation just after midnight at Martin Luther King Elementary School on Stanley Street to find that a car had driven through a plate glass window of the school and come to rest in the middle of a classroom used as an art studio. The driver fled but was found walking in the neighborhood not far from the crash and taken into custody. - Fire News photo by Peter Barber

On April 2, 2018, two drivers were pronounced dead at the scene after a head-on collision on State Route 5 and Wolf Hollow Road. The impact was so violent it ripped the engine from one of the vehicles. A LifeNet helicopter was brought to the scene but turned back after learning the fate of the victims. - Fire News photo by Peter Barber

Fire News, June 2018, Page 17

4 Injured in Glenmont MVA

On April 17, 2018, the Selkirk Fire Department responded to an MVA on Route 144 (River Road) at Glenmont Road. Upon arrival they found two vehicles with four injured. One vehicle had a mother, infant and child. The other vehicle had a male occupant severely trapped. He suffered from very serious injuries to both legs. Albany County Paramedics sent them to Albany Medical Center by Bethlehem Ambulance Service. - Fire News photo by Tom Heffernan

Schenectady MVA

On April 19, 2018, Schenectady firefighters used hydraulic extrication tools to free the driver of a car after it lost control on Albany Street, hit a parked car and ripped off the front porch of a home. A parked vehicle was hit so hard it was thrown onto a neighboring yard and came to rest on its side. Two other passengers were also injured and transported to Albany Medical Center for treatment. - Fire News photo by Peter Barber

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Coldenham Battles 2-Alarmer

On April 8, 2018, a two-alarm fire broke out on Route 52 in the moved up to the scene as the second FAST, since the first FAST was Coldenham Fire District in a two-story apartment, which was re-assigned to fire duty. The crew of Engine 580 was then put to attached to the main house. The fire extended to the house. Engine work to assist with overhaul. - Fire News photos by Chief Gary Hearn 580 was relocated to stand-by in Coldenham’s quarters and shortly

Fire News, June 2018, Page 19

MOTLEY CREWS OF THE MONTH ‘310 Day’ in RVC On March 12, 2018, members of FDNY Engine Company 310 and Ladder 174 got together for their annual “310 Day.” Former and current members of “Snyder Island” got together at MacArthur Park in Rockville Centre to share stories. - Fire News photo by Thomas J. Lambui

FDNY Rescue 2 Breakfast On April 10, 2018, current and former members of FDNY Rescue 2 gathered for breakfast at the Nautilus Diner in Massapequa. - Fire News photo by Thomas J. Lambui

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Invisible Fence Provides Pet Masks The West Albany and Midway Fire Departments received a donation of pet oxygen masks from the Invisible Fence Company. Invisible Fence is dedicated to pet safety and wishes to aid any fire department with a donation of three different sizes of pet oxygen masks as part of Project Breathe. Standard human masks do not fit pets so these specialty masks are designed to fit any small pet from dogs and cats to guinea pigs. Since the inception of Project Breathe over 7500 mask kits have been donated to fire departments, and over 158 pets have been saved by these masks. If any fire department would like to receive a donation of masks, contact Kim Bellizzi of Invisible Fence at 518-882-7139. - Fire News photos by Lori Washburn

Fire News, June 2018, Page 21



Paul R. Tokarski On March 15, 2018, a funeral was held for FDNY Firefighter Paul R. Tokarski, of Ladder Company 164. Tokarski, 52, passed away on March 10, 2018 after an illness attributed to his exposure at Ground Zero after 9/11. He is survived by his daughter Cole Tokarski, 18. Tokarski was interred at Mt. Pleasant Cemetery in Center Moriches. - Fire News photos by Thomas J. Lambui

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St. Baldrick’s Day in Westmere The Westmere Fire Department once again held its St. Baldrick’s fundraising event, which brings together fire departments from across upstate New York to assist in raising much needed funds for childhood cancer research. The event, coordinated by Firefighter Josh Lare, whose son is in remission from childhood cancer, raises thousands of dollars each year. Fire departments participate in a parade transporting children with cancer to the event and, at the event, the community, professionals and firefighters raise money to enable them to by have their heads shaved. Donations go to the Children’s Hospital at Albany Medical Center. (Bottom, right): Firefighters Joe Moscetello, Sr., of the Latham Fire Department; Brandon Husfelt, of the West Albany Fire Department; and Joe Moscetello, Jr., participate in the St. Baldrick’s Day event by having their heads shaved in honor of children with cancer who lose their hair during chemo treatments. - Fire News photos by Lori Washburn

Bronx 3-Alarm Just past midnight on April 27, 2018, FDNY firefighters were dispatched for a house fire on White Plains Road in the Bronx. Units arrived to fire in a multiple dwelling. An extra engine and truck were requested for heavy fire conditions on the second floor extending to the third. Firefighters made an aggressive interior push but the fire, moving fast, had hit the third floor and went into the cockloft. Second and third alarms were declared for additional resources. The fire was placed under control in under an hour. - Fire News photo by

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Fire news nys 6 18  

A publication serving New York State's Fire, Rescue & EMS Heroes.

Fire news nys 6 18  

A publication serving New York State's Fire, Rescue & EMS Heroes.