The Friday Report
  August 26, 2022
Lake Cities becomes the 28th department in the State of Texas to receive the Texas Fire Chief Assoc Best Practices recognition and accreditation. Chief David Jones and Chief Jerry Duffield presented the accolade to Chief Chad Thiessen. Congratulations to Chief Thiessen and the entire Lake Cities Department for the incredible accomplishment!
Providing Protection for Those Who Protect Us
Casco Industries, Inc.®
Casco Industries, Inc. has been in business for over 72 years. Casco is a family-owned business and is in its third generation of ownership. Casco covers 8 States with 6 offices and warehouses, with two office locations in Texas with 18 salesmen and 6 service tech’s covering the State. Casco is the exclusive dealer for MSA SCBA, Globe manufacture, and many other Fire Service Products in most of the states it covers.
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For those attending the TFCA Fire Chiefs Workshop this December in San Antonio, the TFCA room block at the Hyatt Hill Country will close on Nov 22, with no exceptions.  Do not wait to book your hotel stay!

The Workshop will take place on Tuesday, Dec. 13 and Friday, Dec. 16 at 8:00 AM CDT.

The Florida Fire Chiefs' Association Fire Rescue Cadet Section will host the Winter Fire Games in Kissimee, FL next year on Feb.10 and 11.  Registration Includes an opening party, Saturday lunch, Awards Ceremony dinner, and an event challenge coin. There is no charge for visitors to attend and watch the events.

Competiton Events will include a Victim Rescue Drill, Team/Individual Rapid Dress, Communications Drill, Confined Space Challenge, EMS/Fire Relaym, and an EMS/Fire Knowledge Relay.

The event will take place at Embassy Suites by Hilton:
       Orlando Lake Buena Vista South
       4955 Kyngs Heath Road
       Kissimmee, FL 34746

Contact Todd Coulter for further information @ (239)269-6772 or

Martinez Architects, LP
Casco Industries, Inc.
SOURCE: Fire Aviation
The standards and contracting requirements for aircraft that assist wildland firefighters can vary widely among countries. This can create roadblocks for sharing these important tools if a company wishes to operate their aircraft in more than one country.

According to a report from Flight Global, a group of fire aviation industry representatives known as the International Coordinating Council of Aerospace Industries Associations, is urging a United Nations agency, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), to establish international standards for certification and operation of firefighting aircraft.

SOURCE: Wildfire Today
Last week President Biden signed H.R. 6943, the Public Safety Officer Support Act, into law. The legislation expands death and disability benefits under the Public Safety Officers’ Benefits (PSOB) program to include first responders who die by suicide or are disabled by traumatic experiences.

The new law will allow public safety officers to seek disability benefits for PTSD linked to severe trauma  for eligible officers as well as those who are permanently disabled as a result of attempted suicide. It will also allow families of public safety officers who die by trauma-linked suicide to apply for death benefits.

The bill states that first responders or their survivors may qualify for benefits if their suicide or post-traumatic stress disorder was related to being exposed to “a harrowing circumstance posing an extraordinary and significant danger or threat to the life of or of serious bodily harm to any individual.”

SOURCE: Associated Press
As wildfires rage across California each year, exhausted firefighters call for reinforcements from wherever they can get them, sometimes even as far as Australia. However, there is a resource closer to home that is rarely being utilized.

There are thousands of experienced firefighters who earned their credentials in prison. According to an Associated Press review, two state programs designed to get more former inmate firefighters hired professionally have barely made a dent, with one $30 million effort landing jobs for just over 100 firefighters, little more than one-third of the inmates enrolled.

“It’s absolutely an untapped pool of talent,” said Genevieve Rimer, who works with former inmates trying to clear their records. “Thousands of people are coming back from California’s fire camps annually. They have already been trained. They have a desire to go and put their lives on the line in order to ensure public safety.”

Fire protection in the city of Lucas in Collin County, Texas is about to receive the highest Public Protection Classification (PPC) rating awarded by the Insurance Services Office (ISO) and approved by the Texas Department of Insurance.  Lucas joins approximately 76 other communities in Texas with a Class 1 rating.

Prior to this announcement, Lucas’ PPC rating has improved from a Class 2. Full-time firefighter/paramedics have been added. Fire hydrant and water distribution has also been greatly improved. Wylie Public Safety Communications dispatches for the city of Lucas and allows the city to claim automatic aid with Wylie, Fairview, and Parker Fire Departments. All of which added to Lucas’ PPC rating.

The State Fire Marshal’s Office oversees the development of PPC ratings in Texas and has approved the recommendation from the Insurance Services Office of a Class 1/1X rating with an effective date of October 1, 2022.

So far, 2022 has reportedly been the worst year for fire conditions in Texas history.  Local emergency responders and state agencies have responded to 8,600 wildfires for 643,840 acres since Jan. 1.

Texas A&M Forest Service has responded to 1,682 wildfires on 542,393 acres this year. On average, the agency responds to 1,194 wildland fire incidents that burn 462,466 acres each year.

No one works harder than the responders of the Texas A&M Forest Service to protect Texans and their properties.  "Whether they are battling blazes or fighting floods, these folks work relentlessly for all of us, and they deserve our total gratitude," says John Sharp, Chancellor of Texas A&M University System.

SOURCE: Office of the Governor | Greg Abbott
On Monday, Governor Greg Abbott directed the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) to increase the readiness level of the Texas State Emergency Operations Center (SOC) to Level II (Escalated Response) in support of the state’s response to flooding impacting communities across Texas. 

"The State of Texas remains proactive in our emergency response efforts, and we continue to monitor rainfall and flooding conditions across the state," said Governor Abbott. "I want to thank emergency response personnel and first responders for working around the clock to protect lives and property amid these storms. As we work together to protect our communities, I urge Texans to heed the guidance of their local officials and avoid dangerous roadways that could be affected by heavy rain and flash flooding in the days ahead."

At the direction of Governor Abbott, TDEM also activated five additional Texas A&M Task Force 1 swiftwater boat squads and a floodwater boat squad to support local response efforts.

SOURCE: FOX 7 Austin
A former volunteer chaplain for the Austin Fire Department has filed suit against the city of Austin, alleging he was fired for sharing his religious views on sex and gender on a personal blog.

Attorneys for nonprofit legal organization Alliance Defending Freedom filed suit last week in federal court on behalf of Dr. Andrew Fox, an ordained minister who served as AFD's lead chaplain for eight years until his dismissal in December.

A spokesperson for the city of Austin released a statement on the lawsuit, saying:

"The City of Austin heard of the lawsuit through the news media but has not received a lawsuit yet. When we do, we’ll follow our regular process to respond to a lawsuit brought against the City."

SOURCE: Scott Eslinger, 12NewsNow

Cats may have nine lives but one Port Arthur dog appears to at least have two after he was rescued from an empty reservoir at the city water treatment plant Tuesday. The dog was at the bottom of the open reservoir about 20 feet below ground level.
Workers at the city's water treatment plant along Texas Highway 73 called the Port Arthur Fire Department after spotting the pooch at the bottom of an empty concrete reservoir.

Photos released by the City of Port Arthur showed a firefighter climbing down a ladder and climbing back up carrying the medium sized dog.

The dog is fine and has been adopted by a staff member from the water treatment facility.

Emergicon , LLC.
This week's update covers the following:
  •  TML Municipal Policy Summit Establishes Priorities for Upcoming Legislative Session
  •  District Court Preliminarily Rules in Plaintiff Cities' Favor in Internet Sales Tax Sourcing Litigation
  •  House and Senate Committee Interim Hearings
  •  Mandated Cybersecurity Training and Reporting Due Wednesday, August 31

The NFPA 1041 Fire Instructor II course is designed to meet the needs of entry-level fire and emergency service instructors by meeting or exceeding the job performance requirements in National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1041, Standard for Fire Service Instructor Professional Qualifications, Chapter 5 “Fire Instructor II.” 

Upon completion of this course you are eligible to take the National Board on Fire Service Professional Qualifications (Pro Board) written exam and skills testing.  Participants that receive a Pro Board certification are eligible for certification through Texas Commission on Fire Protection (TCFP) through reciprocity. In addition, participants can apply for certification through State Firefighters’ and Fire Marshals’ Association (SFFMA).

Propane Council of Texas
Komatsu Architecture
In this episode of Fire Law Roundup, Brad and Curt discuss the termination of a Miami firefighter for offensive social media comments he made in a group chat relative to the murder of a Miami-Dade police officer; the decision to terminate a fifty-year-old consent decree that mandated strict race-conscious hiring quotas for Massachusetts fire departments; the dismissal of a race and age discrimination lawsuit brought by a Hartford, CT firefighter; a lawsuit filed by the family of an Ohio man who claims responders administered Narcan to him when he was suffering from asthma-related respiratory distress; and a $3.9 million settlement of a suit brought by firefighters who were terminated by a Minnesota city as part of a restructuring.

The 1991 movie Backdraft is a classic firefighter film, but that does not mean it is without flaws. In this video, the Fire Department Chronicles host reviews this film for what it got right and what it got very wrong. 

In this video, Firefighter Engineering hosts Frank Ricci and Bobby Halton talk with their guests about leadership and when doing the right thing requires going outside of the organizational structure. They speak with Greg Dillon, former FBI agent, whistleblower, and author of The Thin Blue Lie, and Derek Alkonis, research program manager with UL Fire Safety Research Institute, about his son, Ridge, an American Naval Officer trapped in a foreign justice system.