Imagine Frogger with a fire truck

Video from inside a Boston firetruck navigating downtown traffic and frogs pedestrians.

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emergency services here don't get Blues and Twos training

...and they should.

In the UK, for example - if you want to drive a vehicle with emergency lights and siren, you get on-road training first and have to pass an exam. There are also simple B&2's exercises where a driver, crew, and observer will simply go out and do a run to practice, not under emergency circumstances. There are a lot of clips on youtube of the trainings and practices.

The most surprising? Very limited use of the siren...because when you lay on the siren behind a group of people at a red light, they start to panic, and do stupid shit like drive into/through the intersection, possibly causing a crash..or inadvertently blocking the intersection because they've blocked cross-traffic.

Dotrat needs to calm his ragey little self: most of those people seen aren't selfishly running in FRONT of the truck to 'beat' it - many of them were already crossing, and when they saw the truck was headed their way (see, that funny thing about intersections is that there are lots of them, and you don't psychically know which way a fire truck is going to go)...were running to GET OUT OF THE WAY for the crew.

And yes, we all know about Kevin Kelly...firefighters can't shut up about him.

He died because the firefighter driving his truck was not qualified to drive it and inappropriately repeatedly applied the airbrakes, depleting the air reservoir.

He died because the truck he was in was maintained not by mechanics, but by untrained, non-certified, inexperienced and unqualified firefighters whose union forced the city to hire/transfer them into those positions.

And how did the union respond? By dancing on his grave for political leverage.

You seem to have some

You seem to have some animosity towards the men who drive this truck. First yes,I can personally say many people who drive in this city don't give a rats behind about big red trucks with flashing lights and loud noises coming from them if they can beat one stop light. Yes some pedestrian were simply trying to get out of the crosswalk faster but, others will literally cross where they please at thier own rate.

And yes we will not "shut up" about Kevin Kelley. The brakes were shot. The truck was 15 years old. The firefighters working in the maintenance shop replaced the mechanics that were layed off back in the 80's. Any work like brakes or transmitions was sent out to contractors. Five years ago, much of the apparatus were older than the firefighters driving them. The city has finally begun to replace them since the Death of Lieutenant Kelley. Don't worry, we still won't "shut up about him".

The real problem is not the firefighters or mechanics in the shop, but the bean counters in the office. 3 senior mechanics have quit the job in the past 3 years since the wrench turners have moved in. Why? because they get interfered with by civilian mangers.

you can't read, or see

You seem to have some animosity towards the men who drive this truck.

Never said that anywhere in my comment. Learn how to read. Or perhaps you're an entitled narcissist who views any commentary as an attack? You want to see animosity? Here you go.

Yes some pedestrian were simply trying to get out of the crosswalk faster but, others will literally cross where they please at thier own rate.

Every pedestrian I see in the road is RUNNING.

The firefighters working in the maintenance shop replaced the mechanics that were layed off back in the 80's. Any work like brakes or transmitions was sent out to contractors. Five years ago, much of the apparatus were older than the firefighters driving them.

Nice try. http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/art...

First paragraph: "A detailed police report from a recent investigation of a fatal Boston firetruck crash concludes that a Fire Department contractor installed the wrong parts on the ladder truck’s brakes several months before the crash and that firefighters who were not licensed mechanics repeatedly adjusted the brakes in violation of national safety guidelines."

The wrong parts were installed, but because your fellow union buddies were checking out the trucks, they didn't notice the wrong parts and adjusted the brakes improperly. The report is unequivocal:

The report states that Boston firefighters working in the department’s vehicle maintenance division were changing a tire on the truck on May 16, 2008, when they decided to adjust the brakes. Noticing the brakes were not working as forcefully as they should, they manually tweaked automatic slack adjusters on both rear wheels until the brakes stopped the wheels from turning, according to the report.

The slack adjusters are designed to automatically adjust brake pressure as brake pads wear down and should only be manually adjusted by qualified technicians when the part is initially installed or when it is the only way to get the vehicle to a repair shop, according to the guidelines from the NTSB. Those guidelines were also distributed in 2006 by the International Association of Fire Chiefs, which warned that manual adjustment outside those circumstances could have “deadly consequences.’’
The police report, citing Fire Department logs of maintenance work, pointed out that Boston firefighters and outside contractors performed the improper adjustments on the truck 10 times “despite clear and concise warnings to the contrary.’’

But hey, keep blaming others. What should we expect from a union which used mailings showing giant fireballs over the city, and when a firefighter responding to a fire died because HE WAS DOING COCAINE...tried to use drug testing as a bargaining chip for MORE MONEY. If you assholes weren't doing coke in your firehouses we wouldn't NEED drug testing in the first place to assure OUR safety.

Funny how our lives are so very precious when it comes to your wages, but not so precious when it's a nice day out, or there's a big Sox game and huge numbers of you call in sick...or when you're doing coke lines in the firehouse on duty?

So, I too am a firefighter,

So, I too am a firefighter, and to be honest, I haven't heard anything about this guy being killed ? Was he hit by a fire apparatus or something ? Either way, I don't know a ton about air brakes / etc. but even I know that the air is used to RELEASE the brakes. Not apply them. So if he had depleted all the air from the tank, it would lock the brakes up. This happened to us on one of our engines awhile back. We were using it during a parade, and the air horn got stuck on, so all the air in the tank ran out which locked up the brakes. We had to wait for The mechanic to come fix the air horn on the side of the road then start the truck and let the air build back up before we could even move it. Lol.

I thought they did a great job too

Those streets are hard to navigate in a regular car, forget about a truck.

I'm surprised they got through the intersection of Atlantic Ave and Summer Street as well as they did. Chauncy, Essex, Temple -- those are small roads with a lot of parked cars and foot traffic.

Sirens in the UK

I've been in London for the past two weeks and will be here until the end of the olympics. Perhaps they moderate their sirens in other parts of the country but in the city they never turn them off and they are LOUD. As a pedestrian walking on the sidewalk it's painfully loud -- worse then Boston.

I won't comment on the rest of your post but I will agree it seems like the people crossing the street in the video where never close enough to slow down the truck.

Use of Siren

Got my backside chewed off a couple of weeks ago because I didn't have the siren on absolutely every second from the time the tires hit the street till the time we rolled up in front of the house (medical call). No one out there to hear the siren except the bugs in the cornfield, us in the truck, and apparently someone with nothing more to do than complain about the lack of noise, but by golly, we've got to have it on! Missouri's Statute isn't clear on the subject, so it's interpreted a dozen different ways.

Not sure about Blues & Twos but MA cops get EVOC training

Never heard of Blues & Twos but successful completion of the 100 hour Emergency Vehicle Operator Course (EVOC) is mandatory in all MA Police Academies for full-time officers and troopers. It's not an easy course and many are forced to repeat it before they can graduate. I'm not sure what the fire department training consists of.

As for those police, fire and medics who "lay on the siren," what would you have them do instead? Get out of the emergency vehicle and rap on the window of the driver in front of them?

Worst Article Ever.

Everyone hates fire, police, and EMS until they actually need them. Hey Monday morning quarterback, why don't you get behind of these things are try driving it? Oh wait, that's right, because you need to be skilled enough to be a firefighter, police, officer, or EMT, and then pass a driving test.

YOU CALL YOURSELF A COLUMNIST

YOU CALL YOURSELF A COLUMNIST FOR AN ONLINE NEWSPAPER THAT HAS ZERO CREDENTIALS, AND THEREFORE, IS PROBABLY IN THE TOP RUNNING WITH THE ONION. You are a joke, lack disrespect, and should never have the opportunity to write again until you can articulate an article that has credible sources that are properly cited. I'm one of those "ambulance douchebags" who has saved many lives while you sit behind a computer and bash everyone else. You article and paper should be taken down due to its uneducated and insulting remarks. I can't wait for the day when you need one of those 911 douchebags, but they're taking too long to get there because some ass wrote an article about how they shouldn't use their sirens. It's for their own and the public's safety. Oh and EVOC, you probably haven't heard of it, but it's an Emergency Vehicle Operations Training course, instructs us to never turn off our lights or sirens on a response. I mean, you can argue with the NTSB, but with your lack of credibility, they'd probably just laugh in your face. Enjoy your dead end job, writing for an awful online newspaper, while everyone else is making their 6-figure salaries. Hope people find where you live and blast the airhorn and sirens on every response.

*Lack Respect

Late night at work, but you wouldn't know what that means. Quick to criticize my ONE error. Why don't you address everything else I wrote too? Oh wait, you don't have any argument against any of it.

Working-class Theatre

Fact: More than eight seconds of exposure to sound decibel levels in excess of 120db will permanently damage hearing (EMS, PD and Fire are well in excess of the 120db range, particularly Boston EMS with their disorienting double-siren boat horn ass-hat combination that they so furiously bleat all over the city). Since 66% of what the fire toolbags respond to are "medical emergencies," (where they are racing to beat the douchebags in the ambulances), and since they cannot transport the sick or injured to a hospital, a taxpayer-resident of the city could fairly question why all of the bullshit theatre? We rarely have building fires anymore, so why do we pay these high-school graduates six-figure salaries? EMS morons? They're giving people rides to the hospital who are dizzy, have a cut on their finger, or who got sucker punched in a fight (masturbatory monkeys with sirens for...well you get it). It's all bullshit—the sirens and the lights are a trope (and for the record, I was a cop in this city for going on three decades).

The frequent unnecessary

The frequent unnecessary sirens from PD and FD are sounded in order to remind taxpaying slaves of how ultra-important PD and FD are, like nothing else in their lives, and that when their contracts are being negotiated, it's time for them to BOHICA.

What a dbag....you must be

What a dbag....you must be one of those who spent 100k and have no common sense. High School grads? What about the ones that served in the military but dont have a degree.Working class theatre....GFY.

Must of been awesome being a

Must of been awesome being a bully in school for years, getting into the real world realizing your just an average pussy so you did the only thing you could and became a cop. Your impotent dick must be huge! I'm sure I speak for every fire and end community member when I say that I genuinely hope you drop dead somewhere there is a volunteer EMS and fire system and it takes 35 min to get to you since the dumb ass first responder cops won't know the 02 tank from the backboard! But ya... We are definitely overpaid!

What a Jerk! Re: Working-Class Theatre

First of all: "I was a cop in this city for going on three decades" more than explains your holier than thou attitude. In fact, it pretty much sums up your entire character and mentality (or lack thereof). In your little mind, I'm sure running around handing out parking and/or speeding tickets is much more admirable than the "fire toolbags" and "douchebags in the ambulance" who are out there risking their lives to save ingrates like yourself. Don't get me wrong. I have a great respect for police officers. But only the ones who clearly deserve it. The ones who not only put their lives on the line daily for perfect strangers, but also know how to treat people with respect.
I would absolutely LOVE to be there the day your house catches fire... oh wait - evidently you live in a town where things miraculously never catch fire anymore right? Thus Rendering these "six-figure high school graduates" useless of course. (Six figures? You'd better check your facts next time, genius.) OK then, maybe I can be there when you or your wife or children have a serious injury or get into a life threatening accident...Or has your town suddenly become immune to those too?
Either way, my point is, I'm willing to bet, in fact I KNOW that when either one of these scenarios happen to you, you will be the FIRST person to pick up the phone and call these "fire toolbags, EMS morons and douchebags in the ambulance". And do you know what? Despite your high and mighty attitude, your low intelligence level and lack of respect for others, these people will be right there helping to save your life, your family member's life, your home or your property, because that is what we do. It's who we are. We are willing to sacrifice our lives for others, regardless of their ignorance or lack of respect. Judging from your comments I hardly think you could even comprehend this fact, let alone say the same.
And by the way...Some of us volunteer our time and don't get paid a dime. What do YOU do Mr. "Anonymous"?

When my husband was a kid

...he saw a cop put on his sirens specifically to justify driving over a median to get into a donut shop faster. (Not Boston, though.)

I've also seen many ambulance, police, fire drivers sit in gridlock laying on the horn and sirens, when there is literally, physically no where for anyone to move.

I know it's important that they get to where they are going, but have some sympathy for the little people who don't want to end up in the back of that ambulance.