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5-Alarm Task Force!
News & Issues for First Responders
Category: Training
Location: Greater Ft. Lauderdale
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Former firefighter/EMT; President & Executive Producer of Dalmatian Productions, Inc., a production company dedicated to create...


by Steve Greene
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December 03, 2019 06:39 AM PST

Many of us in the fire service believe that, for the most part, most fire departments in North America are the same, other than size and run numbers, with some being career and others volunteer. Part of that broad statement is that many of us still face major organizational problems. How we deal with them might make a difference.

Chief Stan Metcalfe of the Beaverlodge Fire Dept., in Alberta Canada explains that while many departments might have similar problems, it is how we approach these problems that can often set one department apart from others. In this podcast, Chief Metcalfe breaks his topic into three segments, “Setting Expectations for Success,” “Developing a Leadership Culture,” and “Maintaining Momentum Through Training.”

Each of these sections is easily applicable to most departments across North America, especially our volunteer departments. As you listen to Chief Metcalfe, don’t be surprised if what he discusses sounds like your firehouse! Better yet, the Chief offers concrete suggestions for overcoming the obstacles discussed. Think about it, then pass it on!

November 22, 2019 10:58 AM PST

Brad Davidson is a Canadian Fire Executive with 38 years serving, “Mrs. Smith.” Brad has a strong love and passion for the fire service, underscored by his years of experience and his certifications. Through out chats on Twitter and by phone, I shared my passion regarding the Fire Service Cancer Initiative with him. And with that, he was off and running.
He has done several years of research since our first conversation on the topic and has tried to be as proactive as possible in promoting the Initiative in Canada. Yet, outside of the country’s major metropolitan areas, it is still a “tough sell.” But that won’t be a hindrance to Brad.
Join us as we talk about our friendship and his strong efforts to support and spread the word on both the Cancer and Behavioral Health Initiatives in our neighbor to the north.

PLEASE TUNE IN at www.dalmatianproductions.tv or on your favorite podcast platform.

November 18, 2019 06:50 AM PST

I will honestly say that this episode of “5-Alarm Task Force” is one of, if not THE best episode we have ever produced. It is informative, tragic and dark, yet also demonstrates inner strength and recovery.
My guest is Chris Fields, a retired Major with the Oklahoma City Fire Dept. While his name may not be familiar, a world-famous photo of him carrying the body of a toddler killed in the bombing of the Federal Building on April 19, 1995, may jog your memory.
Chris shares his story from his first day as a rookie, his ongoing journey growing as a firefighter and then, through the tragedy of the bombing and through the deep and dark segment of his life, as he suffers AND successfully recovers from PTSD. PLEASE listen and KEEP this podcast. I guaranty that you will learn from it and, it might help you if you find yourself in a similar position.

November 01, 2019 06:05 AM PDT

If you have a year or two more “under your belt” you know that learning in a classroom is nothing compared with learning on an active fireground. A good firefighter is ready for almost anything as he/she dismounts from the apparatus, because the fireground is an ever-evolving, ever-changing, location with massive changes that can occur in just seconds. And if you’re not ready for it……
My guest on this episode is Lt. Mike Daley. He is a nationally known instructor and writer for the trades. With over 30 years on the job, Mike knows this business and he knows the fireground. Mike shares that knowledge with us, discussing both the basics about the fireground, then moving to the size-up and finally, going into action with the knowledge you’ve gained from his first two segments.
This episode is truly a teachable “moment” for every firefighter and every line officer. Sure, you may have heard some of this before, but you will hear it differently today!

PLEASE TUNE IN at www.dalmatianproductions.tv or on your favorite podcast platform.

October 19, 2019 12:44 PM PDT

Over the last several years, we have seen more openness, understanding and assistance appear regarding behavioral health issues in the fire service and, for that matter, for all first responders! We know the issue has been there. It’s another case of the “elephant in the firehouse;” everyone sees it, but no one wants to talk about it! Add to that the fact that we’re losing far to many first responders to suicide and issue is as pressing as is the Cancer Initiative.

My guest, Mark W. Lamplugh, Jr., is well versed and studied in this area and has been working with first responders for at least, the last 10 years. On this podcast, Mark announces a new, online, anonymous platform, geared specifically to first responders. You will want to listen to this podcast carefully, to hear about this program, as well as several others that once can access in private and with complete anonymity.

If we can put up a great fight against cancer, we can save the lives of our friends and colleagues who are facing other demons!

PLEASE TUNE IN at www.dalmatianproductions.tv or on your favorite podcast platform.

October 07, 2019 06:26 AM PDT

One of the most important numbers in our business is 360! It has been drilled into us that upon arrival at a call for smoke and/or fire, the first arriving officer should make as complete an inspection of the structure/scene as is possible. Then, the officer gives the crew initial instructions to mitigate the issue. What does that officer see? What’s involved? What needs to be done first. All of this is part of what we call the “size-up.”

My guest is Chief Mike Terpak, recently retired from the Jersey City Fire Department, where he served as Deputy Chief and Citywide Tour Commander. With over forty years of experience, especially in one of the most intensely populated cities in the nation, there's little that the Chief has not seen!

We discuss how his most recent book, “Fireground Size-Up” (Second Edition) was actually “born” when he was a rookie firefighter and began to use notebooks to keep track of calls, what had to be done and how they would accomplish their task. Those notebooks piled up over the years and finally led to the Chief sharing his knowledge and experience in a manner that would benefit any firefighter who would read it. Listen as the Chief describes several challenging calls that he responded to.

Tune in at www.dalmatianproductions.tv or on your favorite podcast platform.

September 23, 2019 07:06 AM PDT

We have all seen the news footage – huge wildfires consuming large areas in California. Last year, major fires like the Woolsey and Camp fires, destroyed thousands of acres of woodland, thousands of homes and disrupted the lives of tens of thousands of residents. And, in almost every newsreel, you saw firefighters and other first responders, doing tasks, such as fighting the fires, clearing a fire line, help escaping residents and much more. It begs the question, “How does California organize thousands of firefighters and other personnel to have them all respond to these fires?”

My guest on this episode of “5-Alarm Task Force” is FF/PM/Eng Brad Bihun. Brad is a firefighter, paramedic and engineer in Southern CA. However, he is also trained as a PIO – Public Information Officer, for CAL Fire, the state’s special fire coordination department. Brad explains to us how the state uses six Incident Management Teams to rally all the forces needed for both mitigating an incident and caring for the people effected by it. Last year, one of these major fires required over 8,000 men and women, with various responsibilities, to handle the emergency and its ramifications.

Brad provides many insights into how the third-largest state in the U.S., is able to organize responses to certain emergencies that most of us, hopefully, will never see, yet are all too common in California! Tune in on your favorite podcast platform or at www.dalmatianproductions.tv.

September 19, 2019 05:02 AM PDT

For as long as there have been people, fire and those willing to quench unexpected issues from fire, the basic tenet was “put the wet stuff on the red stuff!” Of course, there were no “classes” given to what was burning until many years later. And to be honest, that premise worked. However, in the last fifty years or so, one of the key issues that has changed is WHAT is burning and what is the safest and most expedient way to snuff these more modern flames.

On this podcast, my guest Chief (ret) Shawn Oke of the Albemarle NC Fire Dept. and a co-founder of the educational effort, “Kill the Flashover.” With nearly thirty years in the fire service, one of Chief Oke’s passion is the use of foam, or for a more accurate description, using “enhanced water streams” for Class A fires, some of which can be utilized when fighting either Class A or Class B fires.*

Tune in as Chief Oke explains the background and development of this relatively modern way of fighting the types of fires we see most of the time and why, your department’s investment in this practice will yield swifter dousing of the flames, less damage to the property and most importantly, the firefighters having exposure time to the dangerous carcinogenic and other toxic particles created in these fires and their heat.

Find us on your favorite podcast platform or on our website, www.dalmatianproductions.tv.

*Class A fires deal with house fires, paper, wood, etc. Class B fires deal with hydrocarbon-based products such as flammable liquids, i.e., gas, oil, kerosene, etc.

September 16, 2019 05:43 AM PDT

What direction does your fire, law enforcement or EMS department have for its future? Do you have a timetable for your apparatus, vehicles, equipment, etc.; how long will, what you now have, last and what will you do when it’s time to replace it? Sometimes, it might be similar to how you may have learned to cook spaghetti – throw a few pieces against the wall – if they stick, it’s time to eat!

On this podcast, I welcome my friend, Capt. John Dixon. Capt. Dixon is a well-known instructor on the national, regional and local levels. And, as a former U.S. Marine, John brings a great deal of that experience to his work in the fire service. He discusses the value of creating a Strategic Vision Plan for your department and shares numerous hints that you can follow so that all the members will feel that they not only have had a say in the plan, but the role they will play once the plan is set into motion. Your voice will have a say in the future of your organization.

(You can also visit the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation’s website, https://www.everyonegoeshome.com/2017/11/30/strategic-vision-guide/ to view the Plan’s PDF document for download.)

Follow Capt. Dixon on Twitter @JohnDixon263 and on Instagram @JohnDixon_263 or visit his website, www.instructorjohndixon.com.

Tune in via all the popular podcast platforms or visit our website at www.dalmatianproductions.tv.

September 03, 2019 11:22 AM PDT

Most of us who became volunteer or career firefighters, paramedics or EMT’s, did so for a specific reason – to help people. As the late Chief “Bruno” taught us, our job is to take of Mrs. Smith on her worst day, even if that day is her cat up a tree. And that lesson, really does cross all the lines of first responders. However, sometimes the people we are supposed to help are not so happy to see us.

My guests on this podcast are Jason Brooks, PM and Kevin Onorevele. Through their company DT4EMS, Inc., they teach across first responders across the country how to avoid certain situations that could become violent, with a patient or family members. If you have not had or seen that experience, consider yourself lucky! It is more common that you probably realize. We hope that this podcast will help you watch for the key signs that your call may “turn south” in a heartbeat.

Tune in on your favorite podcast platform or on our website at www.dalmatianprodutions.tv.

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