Boston Fire Department
The Boston Public Library just posted a ton of photos of Boston firefighters and firefighting back in the good old days (like, when horses still pulled fire engines) from its Leslie Jones collection. Do not click on that link if you don't have some time to spare. I'll be posting some photos from the collection over the next few days, but had to start with this photo of a firetruck trying to get out of a fire house because it's just so Boston: Massholism is obviously not a new phenomenon.
Click to see the photo in all its glory; post if you know where that station was.
Posted under this Creative Commons license.
The Globe reports.
The Boston Fire Department reports a caravan of firefighters and trucks left Boston at 4 a.m. to help with rescue and recovery in Springfield:
Boston Fire dispatched Engine 14 & Engine 41 to Springfield as part of a Statewide mutual aid task force. ... Boston Fire also sent its Technical Rescue Team; Engine 10, Tower 10, Rescue 1 & District Chief 6 along with our box truck of tools to Brimfield at 4:30 am. They are staged there for deployment as needed. This team is made up of 15 firefighters
Boston Police are investigating a mid-afternoon crash that sent a police officer and a firefighter to the hospital - and a traffic signal to the ground - at Morton and Harvard streets.
According to the Boston Fire Department, Ladder 29 from the Blue Hill Avenue station was responding to a car accident on American Legion Highway around 3:40 p.m. when it collided with an SUV driven by the police officer.
The firefighter suffered head injuries, the cop leg and head injuries; none life-threatening.
The Boston Fire Department reported today that random drug testing conducted since September has found two positives out of 1,053 tests done:
In one case, the person served a 30 day unpaid suspension and entered the Employee Assistance Program. In the other case, the person entered a treatment program and served a 30 day unpaid suspension when the program concluded. This person has also entered the Employee Assistance Program.
Boston has more than 13,000 fire hydrants, and this winter it's been a struggle to keep them clear for firefighters.
Although the Boston Water and Sewer Commission and the Boston Fire Department are responsible for making sure hydrants actually work, there's no law regulating who has to keep them clear after snowstorms, Boston Fire spokesman Steve MacDonald said.
The Globe reports on abuse of a shift-swapping system designed to replace firefighters out sick.
Post update with further information from BFD.
This statement just in from Fire Commissioner Roderick Fraser:
I have reviewed the evidence provided by the Boston Police Department regarding the events at the Rise nightclub as well as the documentation provided by my Nightclub Inspectors and have determined that the Rise was in violation of their posted capacity and have fined them accordingly. The Boston Fire Department takes overcrowding or any other violations of the fire code which would endanger the public's safety, very seriously.
The Boston Fire Department reports it's just signed a contract for a wicked fast new fireboat. The $4.2-million aluminum John S. Damrell (named after the fire department's chief engineer during the Great Fire of 1872) will be able to pump 12,000 gallons of water per minute - when it's not racing somewhere at speeds of up to 35 knots (40 m.p.h.).
The 69-foot Damrell is also designed to respond to biological, chemical and even radioactive attacks, according to the department. It's being built by Metalcraft Marine, Inc. of Kingston, Ont., and is expected in Boston Harbor in August, 2011.
About half the money for the boat comes from federal stimulus funds; the rest from the city. The Damrell will replace a boat in service since 1972.
NorthEndWaterfront.com pecks out the story (and posts the exclusive photo) of an ungrateful seagull trapped in a harbor piling that rewarded his rescuer with a bite that drew blood - sending the unlucky firefighter to the ER for a tetanus shot.
Mike Durant rounds up the coverage of the contract signed late Tuesday.
Chuck Turner interrupted a lovefest among other councilors, firefighters and the mayor's office this afternoon: As much as he admired the work firefighters and the administration did to finally come up with a contract, he could not vote for it without a guarantee councilors would press the mayor to stop the planned layoffs of hundreds of other city workers.
"You can bake cats, but that doesn't make them biscuits," he said.
The Globe reports on a breakthrough following eight hours of negotiations involving three city councilors as mediators. The Globe's Donovan Slack tweets the deal calls for a 1.5% drug-testing pay raise (an arbitration panel had awarded 2.5%) that will only apply to current firefighters.
They called a meeting at 10:30 p.m. tonight. No immediate word on what could fire them up like that. One presumes it's one of those "emergency" meetings to get around the 48-hour notice otherwise required under the state open-meeting law.
The City Council met briefly this morning to urge Tom Menino and Firefighters Local 718 to get a room and hammer out a contract that's fair to both firefighters and taxpayers.
UPDATE: Administration to City Council: Just say no to firefighters; that would create a tidal wave of other unions demanding similar drug-testing deals. City council to administration: With all due respect, you suck. Councilor Ayanna Pressley: "There's some sort of conflicting shell game going on here."
Local firefighters union President Ed Kelly this morning offered to freeze for one year a 2.5% raise awarded by an arbitration panel in exchange for drug testing.
City councilors Mike Ross and Steve Murphy immediately congratulated Kelly for making the "significant concession."
After six hours or so of testimony and debate, the City Council adjourned tonight a without voting on the proposed contract for firefighters. The council will reconvene tomorrow at 9:30 a.m. to continue testimony, but council President Mike Ross ended the session by saying councilors will vote on the matter "at a later date" (they have until mid-July to approve or deny the contract).