Health, wellness and fitness-for-duty. These words ring loudly for any first responder - the firefighter, the law enforcement officer and the paramedic or EMT. Some are careful with what they eat; others exercise on a regular basis. Yet, none of us have the ability to look inside of ourselves to see what might be going on; something that may not be known until it requires immediate and significant treatment and even that, may come too late. Today though, you will learn that the above scenario can be altered and produce a positive outcome.
My guest today is a strong supporter of this podcast and dear friend, Todd LeDuc, former Executive Assistant Chief of the Broward Sheriff’s Office-Fire Rescue Services. Todd retired from that job and quickly was named the Chief Strategy Officer for Lifescan Wellness Sciences. In this relatively brief podcast, Todd with explain to you how medical science has advanced to the point where we can indeed look inside you, using a blood sample, ultrasound and EKG/Stress Test, to determine if there is an unknown or hidden medical condition that needs to be addressed immediately. And if so, they give you all the results to bring to your physician or specialist. That way you can be treated and hopefully, be back on the job in no time at all. This episode could very well save a life!
Tune in on all the popular podcast platforms or visit our website at www.dalmatianproductions.tv.
Remember your first day at school? At the fire academy? At your first posting? Those moments are often some of the most difficult in our lives. Yet, for most of us, there was often someone there to guide us on this new journey and that allowed us to calm our nerves. However, it is important to note that learning is almost always a two-way street; there’s the student and there’s the teacher.
My guest on this podcast is Chris Baker, a firefighter in central CA and Chris’ passion is mentoring. He has dedicated himself to promoting mentoring in the fire service and, as he mentions in this podcast, this mentoring is not just for rookies. It is a great way for firefighters who have some time on the job, to reach out to the younger groups, now entering the ranks. Listen, we know there is no way to “learn it all” in the academy! That means we have to reach out to every opportunity that presents itself and take advantage of the wisdom and experience that the other firefighters have gained. And if you have five, ten or more years on the job, you owe it to your department and your community, to help those with less time than you, to hone their skills and learn some of the “tricks of our trade.”
Learning and Teaching – in this job, we can never stop!
Tune in at www.dalmatianproductions.tv or on your favorite podcast platform.
Seen any UAS’s recently? No….not UFO’s – I said, “UAS,” an Unmanned Aerial System. And no, we’re talking about renegade blimps or hot-air balloons. UAS is another term for a drone, those relatively small aerial devices that do everything from shoot film or video to deliver a package your ordered online! For the buying public, they began as small toys advertised all over television. The drones we’re talking about is not even close to the ones used today, especially in public safety.
My guest on this podcast, Chief (ret) Charles Werner is considered the leading expert in the country on drone use for public safety. Always one to keep up with the latest technology to assist the fire service in particular and all public safety in general, Chief Werner has recently been named Director of Drone Responders.org. This organization is the fastest growing non-profit program supporting Public Safety UAS.
In this podcast, Chief Werner will discuss the explosive growth in both the popularity and use of UAS in all aspects of public safety, including all manner of firefighting, law enforcement, EMS, emergency ops and more. As you will hear, drones can and do make a big difference in what we can do today for public safety
We hope you're all having a safe and enjoyable summer.
We're back in the studio and preparing for our 4th season!
This mini-cast will tell you about some of the guests and projects we have coming up.
Watch for our first episode on Friday, August 17th, with Chief Charles Werner.
Stay Safe & Stay Well!
What happens when a bunch of firefighters get together? They “shoot the sh*t” is what most would say, and the 2018 Great Florida Fire School is no different. Sponsored by the FSFA (Florida State Firefighters Association, the School provides an opportunity for firefighters from Florida and anywhere else in the country, to attend excellent classes taught by some of the best local and nation fire instructors.
“Tactics on Tap,” provides firefighters to come together with a panel of several of those instructors. Attendees can ask any question they may have about firefighting, from training to promotion and education to tactics. No question is turned down and the answers are as true as the sky is blue.
The discussion has been recorded as an episode of “5-Alarm Task Force.”
PLEASE BE ADVISED:
1. Adult language is used.
2. Due to audio problems with the mics, the volume of numerous participants was very low. We have reviewed and edited the audio to provide you with the best listening experience. However, there are frequent spots of unequal audio sections.
While many podcasts and all-over social media, we hear and see a great deal of discussion on tactics, strategies, equipment and more. And it makes sense, as those topics are the “sexy” ones regarding firefighting. However, there’s a great deal more that needs to be discussed just as openly as the subjects mentioned above, but are all too often left alone because, well, they’re just too personal.
On “5-Alarm Task Force,” we embrace ALL the issues that we face as first responders, even the “ugly” ones, such as dealing with a Line of Duty Death and behavioral health issues. For this episode, I am proud to welcome back my friend, David Wiklanski. David, based in New Jersey, is one of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation’s state advocates.
As David mentions, while we do very well with the funeral of a fallen comrade, we need to learn how to actually deal with this tragic issue, through education and preparation. And not only must we learn how to be prepared, we must also assure that our families are prepared, as well. No, it is not an easy topic to think about or bring up, but it is necessary.
David also shares some of the positive news regarding the behavioral health initiative, as well as some outrageous comments by a chief, when a member advises him that he is dealing with behavioral issues and is seeking help. Sadly, this is not as uncommon as we may think. There are those chief officers who either just do not know how to deal with these issues properly or sadly, just do not care!
Tune in on our website, www.dalmatianproductions.tv or your favorite podcast platform!
Stay Safe & Stay Well!
“HAZMAT” – that’s a word that excites one group of firefighters and scares others right down to the bone. And rightly, it should scare everyone…at least a little bit! Hazmat situations very greatly by community, county and state. In one area, an overturned jug of chlorine on a pool-cleaner’s trailer is quickly treated by a single engine company. Yet in another locale, the same spill with require a full Hazmat team response, even if it is part of a regional, as opposed to local, Hazmat team. Many will ask, “Why?”
My guest on this episode of “5-Alarm Task Force,” is Bill Miller who is an Engineer/Paramedic and Deputy Special Ops Coordinator for the Ft. Myers Fire Department. Bill heads up the Hazmat team and explains two key points in this podcast:
1. Most often, the first due/arriving apparatus at a Hazmat call will NOT be the Hazmat Unit, whether it’s local or regional! What can that first apparatus do?
2. How to start a Hazmat team in more than name only!
Bill addresses these two points and explains just how helpful that first due crew can be, as long as they know what to do and what not to do. In the second segment, Bill provides basic information if you are thinking of creating a Hazmat unit, whether within your own department or on a regional/auto-aid basis.
For many of us, today’s firefighting situations are nothing like we faced in our day. Yet, we have great firefighters, instructors, leaders, etc., who understand exactly what we face today and keep abreast of the best means to mitigate these issues. A specialty team like Hazmat is integral to today’s fire service and Bill helps you through some of the initial steps that you must consider when putting a team together!
Stay Safe & Stay Well!
If you’re first responder in any way, i.e., fire, rescue, EMS, law enforcement, safety ranger or recovery/tow operator, there’s every chance that you are aware of what has been happening on our active roadways. We respond to the scene of an emergency and while on-scene, a distracted driver comes barreling through your safety zone, striking your vehicle or, Heaven forbid, the people working there! Since the beginning of 2019, 71 first responders have been killed and dozens more injured. With the refinements in soundproofing our vehicles so that sirens and air-horns can be barely heard, and with drivers’ eyes on fixated on their phones, perhaps we must consider ourselves, “lucky” that only 71 have been lost.
To address this very troubling issue, I brought together a top panel of personnel who are all too aware of what is occurring on our roadways, to get their thoughts and ideas on this matter. Joining me are Chief Billy Goldfeder, Chief Victor Conley, Chief Tony Correia, Chief Brian Stoller and Mr. Steve Austin, co-founder of the website, ResponderSafety.com. These five individuals all have extensive experience with this growing problem and are playing important roles in both examining the matter and working on solutions along various fronts.
It is our hope that not only you will listen to this podcast, but that you will share it with your fellow firefighters, officers and chiefs. Too many first responder agencies are familiar with this problem. And, just like this episode there a numerous ideas towards its solution. We hope this episode of “5-Alarm Task Force,” will be one that will serve as a catalyst to seeing local, municipal, county and state agencies come together to keep all our first responders safe and allow each one to return homes safely to their loved ones.
Please share with us what your departments are doing to face and mitigate this problem, by sending us an email to Dalmatprod@outlook.com and we’ll post your ideas on our website, in our effort to help all of you.
If you have been involved in fire and/or EMS, you probably know the name, “Gary Ludwig.” Chief Ludwig has over 40 years of experience in fire-rescue and EMS. He has served as the Chief Paramedic of the St. Louis Fire Dept, the Deputy Fire Chief for the Memphis Fire Dept, and currently serves as the Chief of the Champaign IL Fire Dept.
In his new book, “Fully Involved Leadership,” Chief Ludwig shares some new and fresh perspectives on good leadership. He brings a new view of the leadership triangle and you’ll be surprised at the vision he presents.
Listen, the best leaders are not the ones who shout the loudest or intimidate those of the lower ranks. Chief Ludwig draws on his years of experience, from when he started his career with the St. Louis Fire Dept., just two months after graduating high school to his present position as Chief of the Champaign IL Fire Dept. His new book is for any firefighter/paramedic who aspires to be a leader in this field, from the newest recruit to well-experienced line officer to the chief.
Once we’re hired as a firefighter or paramedic, or we join a volunteer/paid-on-call department, we realize that there is a long learning road ahead. And once we complete the basic material, we then have to decide what we’ll do next. Will we be satisfied with what we have already accomplished or, will we want to keep learning, advancing our knowledge and, very likely, our career?
My guests on this podcast are Christian (Chris) and Sam Adams from Colorado Springs, CO. After a friend of Chris’ told him about being in EMT school, it piqued his interest. Chris’ next step was to enroll in the same program and Sam was not too far behind. Both started in para-transit, but already had their sights set for more! Over the next couple of years, they become became certified paramedics. Many folks would have stopped there. However, Chris and Sam looked for more and they found it with the Colorado Springs Fire Department, where they serve as firefighter/paramedics and specialty teams.
They recently released their first book, “Life and Death Matters,” (available on Amazon). Their book is neither a “tell-all” or “telling you how do it our way.” Instead, the book addresses the humanity of what we do. Sure, we all want to be the ones to respond to a major call; but they share the fact that no matter how involved or exciting a call can be, we must remember that there are people who are impacted by the event and we have an obligation to them.
They also discuss their passion for learning and, not easily satisfied with that, they work hard to “pay it forward.” They share what is important to them in their careers and their lives. They truly provide a breath of fresh air in this age of social media anonymity, trolling and bullying. This is a podcast you don’t want to miss!
Find “5-Alarm Task Force” on our website, www.dalmatianproductions.tv or on your favorite podcast platform. Stay Safe & Stay Well!