Fire call last night [NA]

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Jim K, Jan 17, 2023.

  1. Jim K

    Jim K En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Sitting at the kitchen table after dinner last night, and my phone dings twice in quick succession, which generally means a fire call. Opened it up, and it was actually a fire (as opposed to the usual medical)...and the address was my parent's house :eek: Weirdly, it was toned out as "red dodge pickup on fire next to corn crib". I don't know anyone with a red dodge truck, nor is there a corn crib on the property.

    Went to the firehouse to grab my gear, and arrive at the scene to find....a red dodge pickup fully involved in the yard, near the grain bins. Apparently the guy was driving down the road when the electrical system went dark, and realized the truck was on fire. So he did what any rational person would do: jumped out of the moving vehicle :rolleyes: which then coasted into my parent's front yard. Thankfully it didn't go any further than it did, as another 40' would have put it either into a grain bin containing $150K worth of seed beans, or a row of 60' tall pine trees. The first engine on scene had it knocked down pretty fast, so no damage aside from the giant black spot in the front yard. Of course I forgot my phone when running out of the house so I didn't even get any pictures.
     
  2. Racerx

    Racerx Pattern Altitude

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    My grandpa when he was a volunteer got a call about my great grandmother's house. Nobody was home. My mom called it in as they lived next door. Can't confirm, but its suspected by those still living to be an inside job as the woman was a hoarder and the house didn't have running water.

    Glad only the lawn was burned
     
  3. SkyChaser

    SkyChaser Cleared for Takeoff

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    Glad everyone and everything is alright!
     
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  4. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner Touchdown! Greaser!

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    When my dad was a volunteer fireman, they got a call to a single car accident & brush fire. Car was unrecognizable (burned Corvette), but one of the guys realized what it was and whose it was, and informed the victim’s dad, who was working the brush fire.
     
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  5. Jim K

    Jim K En-Route PoA Supporter

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    That's a nightmare.

    About 10 years ago, I was in a tractor in the field, and we got toned for a "tractor vs car". Didn't think too much of it until 15m or so later, and the fire chief calls and tells me it was my dad. He had taken his old JD 4020 up to pick up an implement, and a woman plowed into him at 70mph. Split the rear axle clean off the tractor and threw him about 70' onto the pavement.

    So chief came and picked me up from the field, and we went to get mom. We met a county deputy on the way and not knowing who I was, he commented "oh, he didn't make it did he?".

    By the grace of God, an ambulance saw the accident happen, scooped Dad up off the pavement, and got him to the hospital. Pretty much everything was broken, but after a year in a wheelchair, he managed to walk again; pretty tough for a 70 year old guy.

    I'm glad I wasn't able to go to that call. It was bad enough seeing him in the hospital after he was cleaned up a bit. I can't imagine it being one of my kids. To be honest, I would quit as it's getting harder and harder to get up in the middle of the night and go to these things, but there's only about a half dozen of us these days, and all the surrounding towns have the same problem. At some point the county will probably have to organize a paid rural department.
     
  6. SkyChaser

    SkyChaser Cleared for Takeoff

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    Wow. That sounds horrible, @Jim K . I am very glad that he survived that.
     
  7. geezer

    geezer Line Up and Wait

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    Deep appreciation for all volunteer firemen, especially rural ones. They have a much tougher life, partly because they do recognize many of their "customers".

    I have a picture of the Erlanger Volunteer Fire Department. Grandpa is one of two members Emeritus, Dad is an authorized driver, and his brother is also an authorized driver. I take great pride in our families contribution to the safety of their community.

    All my adult life has been in paid fire service cities.
     
  8. Jim K

    Jim K En-Route PoA Supporter

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    My grandfather was the first chief of the department I currently serve on. Here's a cool photo I received recently of him demonstrating the first truck they bought when they organized in 1955 (I've never seen a picture of him not in bib overalls):

    Fam Pix-106.jpg

    Dad was on for about 15 years. They built the interstate through here in the seventies, and after a couple of pretty nasty wrecks, he decided he'd had enough.
     
  9. Gary Ward

    Gary Ward Cleared for Takeoff PoA Supporter

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    Cool picture of your Dad, looked like our local volunteer fire station when I was growing up.

    Glad it was not more serious and no one was hurt. Who jumps out of their truck while it is rolling? They should take his lic away...lol

    60' tall pines reminded me of the time I almost burnt down a big ole row of 60' pine trees in my backyard. When I was much younger and dumber I started on fire a huge pile of wood on a hot windy day. The fire got so big and very fast it started the grass on fire. The wind was blowing right toward those pines and I was dancing around trying to put the grass out with my feet. No way I could do it, just then I thought about a welding tarp my friend had just given me for welding in garage at home. Ran down to the garage and got it and smothered out the ground fire with the tarp. Damn it was a close call, learned something that day. Now I burn much smaller piles on calm wet days.
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2023
  10. geezer

    geezer Line Up and Wait

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    JimK said:
    My grandfather was the first chief of the department I currently serve on. Here's a cool photo I received recently of him demonstrating the first truck they bought when they organized in 1955 (I've never seen a picture of him not in bib overalls)


    My Dad's fire company was organized in 1930, the truck had spoke wheels, and was a converted chemical truck donated by the American Legion. 11 years later a purpose built pumper was added, and the company was split into two, with crews assigned to each truck. He continued with them until March 26, 1944, when we moved to Louisville Ky, which had paid firemen.

    My Dad was one of the volunteers who built the fire house, and did all the wiring, including the siren, which could be turned on from 3 locations.

    Uniform for the posed pictures was slacks, white shirt, and tie! No pumper demonstrations!
    The members include the local bank founder, (donor of the second fire truck), the owner of the hardware store, and his 2 brothers. The fire house was on a corner of the hardware store owners front yard.
     
  11. NealRomeoGolf

    NealRomeoGolf En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Glad you didn't get the call they had on Sunday here. Fatality of a mom; her 10 year old sent to ICU. We know the family. Very sad deal due to a druggie leading a high speed chase. :(
     
  12. luvflyin

    luvflyin Touchdown! Greaser!

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    there's a joke about volunteer fire departments. Went something like this. Big Fire in a field. Cops are there, fire departments with their trucks. Last to arrive was the local volunteer dudes. In a pretty old truck. They drive right by all the others right in to the field and stop in the middle. They scramble and start putting the fire out. The farmer was so impressed he gave them like a thousand bucks or something. When asked what they would do with the money, the volunteer chief said 'buy new brakes.'
     
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  13. Racerx

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    Your family had some high quality cameras back then. Every photo I've got looks like it was taken with a potato.
     
  14. flyingron

    flyingron Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

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    When I was a firefighter and paramedic I got used to sleeping with the scanner going. It never bothered me and them announcing one of our first due assignments was like someone calling your name. One morning there was a medical call for a building in my apartment complex. I quick through on a uniform shirt and ran over there and beat the ambulance in by a few minutes. Alas, the guy was clearly DOA (one of these times when he passed away in his sleep and his wife wakes up in the morning and realizes he's not responding and calls 911).

    The other is sort of classic. It was a hot summer evening and we get a call to the Sears at the local mall in our district. Automatic alarm. One of the few structure callouts that only gets a single engine rather than a full first alarm. We get there and its the usual false alarm. But boy there's thunderstorms on the horizon, giant bolts of lightning everywhere. We figure we were going to get a real fire call out of a lightning strike somewhere.

    We get back to the fire house and as was traditional at our place, after cleaning up we're sitting in chairs on the front porch of the building. One of our members comes down and says he smells smoke upstairs. We go poke around and find nothing. We had an old 1950-s era Mac pumper reserve engine that we were using while one of our regular ones was undergoing maintenance and that thing does generate a lot of exhaust smoke when it was run in the bay directly under where he noticed it, so we figured it was that.

    So anyhow, we all go back on the porch and start in the "What would we really do if the station was on fire?" We preplanned the whole thing.

    A half an hour later the same guy comes downstairs and says the entire second floor is full of smoke now. We all take about ten steps away from the porch so we can look back at the building. Yep, it's on fire.

    Fortuantely, our plan worked like clockwork. One of the lieutenants walks up to the door leading up to the attic space and opens it to see a wall of flame. "Hokely Mokely" he says (I remember that clearly) and slams the door shut. By them me and another guy have masked up and stretched the attack like up to the second floor and proceed to attack the fire.
     
  15. flyingron

    flyingron Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

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    The only other weird one is that one day Margy and I are at the beach and I fall asleep on the blanket. I get this weird dream sense that someone is talking about CPR. I wake up and sit up and find the guy twenty feet in front of me is in the middle of a cardiac arrest and people are indeed doing CPR on him.
     
  16. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser!

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    What a cool picture.

    The department I currently serve on still owns a similar engine to the one pictured. It was the first new piece they bought at the time, everything before that was refurbished civil defense surplus.

    [​IMG]

    As a piece of trivia, the FF standing closest to the engine in your picture is holding a 'Hardie Fog Fire Gun' type high pressure nozzle hooked to a pre-piped booster reel.

    [​IMG]

    I dont recall what pressure they were supposed to be pumped at, but it was pretty high (600psi ?). The concept was that the higher pressure and atomiziation of the water would absorb more heat through steam conversion. This concept was later abandoned until it re-appeared a few years ago with the 'ultra high pressure pumps' in the wildland firefighting world. You are basically fighting fire with a pressure-washer. The fire service has a way of cycling through ideas that come and go until they come back again as the 'latest and greatest'.

    As for its appearance in the picture. The nozzle is sort of one 'era' before that engine as the 'John Bean Company' piston pumps required to create the pressure had fallen out of use by that time. The nozzles were still somewhat popular in the 50s and may have been field modified to work with standard pressures. According to our old-timers, they had moved the 'Hardie Gun' nozzles from an older surplus piece to the 1958 unit pictured above.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2023 at 9:33 AM
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  17. Racerx

    Racerx Pattern Altitude

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    They just restored our "first motorized fire engine" a couple years ago. They have a good chronology of the department history. In 1958 they responded to 40 fires and 15 emergency calls per year.

    FZMG3u3WQAAut0x.jpeg
     
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  18. Craig

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    Little department I was one, had managed to score a P-15 crash truck from the USAF. It would give us 6700 gallons of water and the ability to drive over pasture fires we were often called out on. Unfortunately, while the truck was at Carswell being readied for us, some State Department goober overrode the transfer and had it and a second one shipped to Iraq to give to some little burg there. Reports were that both were stripped frames and bodies within a month of being handed over.
     
  19. midwestpa24

    midwestpa24 En-Route

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    As cool as a P-15 would have been, they probably did you a favor. That truck would probably have been too big to park in your station, would have been difficult to drive on the road, and probably would have been too heavy to do much off roading. Having operated both ARFF and structural myself, other than pump and roll capability, ARFF trucks make terrible grass rigs. Too big, too heavy, and honestly flow too much water. Most ARFF trucks flow 500 to 1,500 gpm out of the turret, for a grass fire 50 to 100 gpm is better.

    As to the original post, probably the worst case we have dealt with was the crash of our local Airmed helo. Small community, and even smaller EMS community. Everyone involved knew each other, and it was quite a traumatic scene to begin with, not to mention the personal relationships with all of the victims.
     
  20. Craig

    Craig Cleared for Takeoff

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    It would have worked for us. We were a very small department and it would have allowed us to use it as a 1 man truck. A typical grass fire for us was several hundred acres and our nearest mutual aide was 15-20 minutes away. Also, our water system was fairly low capacity. It would take us about 18 minutes to load 3000 gallons from one of two hydrants in our area onto the tanker. The second hydrant would take about 26 minutes for the same load. The ranches in our area had already agreed that if we used that truck, all we needed to do was drive over fences for access and they'd take care of repairing them. With the roof guns, we could attack some fires that we could only access with our little modified R-2 and it's 250 gallons of water.

    Neither here nor there these days as the area is covered by an ESD that has bigger problems than we did.