IAFF Report Demonstrates Risks for New Rochelle, Need for Adequate Manpower at Fire Scene

Written By: Deprecated User

New Rochelle Fire Department UFFA Local 273.jpgJust recently, a true, non-biased study was performed to show the need and importance of having adequate manpower when responding to a house fire. The report was completed to show a need for adequate manpower at a residential fire, it does not include high-rise structures, but it’s a good start.

Fire Departments across the nation have suffered a loss in manpower putting the public and the fire fighters at an elevated risk. This study shows an absolute benefit when a department has more men.

New Residential Fire Study Shows Effects of Crew Size on Fire Fighting Operations

April 28, 2010 — A landmark study released by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) shows that the size of fire fighting crews has a substantial effect on the fire service’s ability to protect lives and property in residential fires. Click here to read the news release.

Conducted by a broad coalition in the scientific, fire fighting and public safety communities, the study results found that four-person fire fighting crews were able to complete 22 essential fire fighting and rescue tasks in a typical residential structure 30 percent faster than two-person crews and 25 percent faster than three-person crews.

The report is the first to quantify the effects of crew sizes and arrival times on the fire service’s lifesaving and fire fighting operations.

This and other scientific data in the report will help educate public officials, fire chiefs and other decision-makers on the importance of adequate staffing and deployment with respect to fire fighter and public safety.

Study investigators from NIST and the IAFF announced the results of the study at a press conference at the Hilton Washington in Washington, DC, before the start of the annual Congressional Fire Services Institute meeting of top fire safety officials from the across the nation.

2 thoughts on “IAFF Report Demonstrates Risks for New Rochelle, Need for Adequate Manpower at Fire Scene”

  1. IAFF is a union based political/lobbying organization
    Once again the residents of New Rochelle are subject to a propaganda campaign by one of the City’s municipal unions. The writer claims the IAFF report is a “true, non-biased study ….to show the need and importance of adequate manpower when responding to a house fire”. Let’s start by taking a closer look at the IAFF.

    The IAFF is the International Association of Fire Fighters.The IAFF is associated with the AFL-CIO and is the political and lobbying organization for 297,000 professional unionized firefighters. The IAFF (www.IAFF.org) “claims to be one of the most active lobbying organizations in Washington; its Political Action Committee, FIREPAC, is among the top one percent of the more than 4,000 federal PAC’s in the country”. Wow, that is something to be proud of ! The President of the IAFF is Harold A. Schaitberger who happens to serve on the AFL-CIO Executive Committee, is a vice president of the AFL-CIO’s Executive Council and was a co-chair of Labor 2004, the AFL-CIO’s election steering committee. The organizations General Secretary-Treasurer is Thomas H. Miller who served as the president of the Professional Fire Fighters Union of Indiana from 1978-2002. According to his bio on the website; “The hallmark of his tenure as state president was his work at the statehouse, where he lobbied for better pension benefits, among other issues, for members.”

    After seeing this it is extremely difficult to accept the writers claim that the IAFF report is a “non biased study”. Clearly the goal of the IAFF is to show the need of adequate manpower in order to expand union membership and to expand union influence and power. It is sad to see the New Rochelle union leadership resort to using fear tactics as a means of achieving job security. The message being sent in this blog post is obvious; if firefighters are made redundant you are putting yourself and you family in danger.

    Nowhere does the writer talk about the costs of maintaining of this service. He does not bring up the fact that health benefit and pension costs are completely out of line when compared to the private sector. It is the misalignment of this cost structure that makes the spector of layoffs necessary. If the writer is so concerned about manpower perhaps our community should consider the creation of a company of volunteer firefighters. Scarsdale, Mamaroneck, Eastchester, Pelham and White Plains all maintain volunteer firefighters. In light of this it seems strange that only New Rochelle does not have volunteer firefighters.

    The bottom line is the community can no longer afford to maintain the fire department, as is, under current structure. Saddly, I believe the union leadership would allow the City to to bankrupt before accepting meaningful benefit reform. If the firefighters are unable to accept these fiscal realities then all options should be considered. Including the option of privatization of the New Rochelle fire department.

    1. “Spoken like a true
      “Spoken like a true volunteer” Fact is, whether you like the Fire Department or not, just having “A professional, well-trained, and adequately-staffed department that could respond immediately “not when you feel like getting there, or if you show up at all” essentially keeps the cost of insurance premiums lower. Lobbying, yes we do! We lobby to obtain grants to purchase new and better equipment and to add manpower to essentially keep the public safer. This is not a fear tactic, it’s a fact; proper manpower is needed at an incident to effectively “save lives and preserve property”, the United States President himself recognized this early on by signing the safer act (which adds an additional firefighter to a first line rig) and the firefighter fatality reduction act. A professional department puts themselves at greater risk because they get to an incident more rapidly and yes they are “true professionals” that respond aggressively and know what they are doing when they get there.

      Great spin maneuver! FYI the State recently created a new Tier 5 pension system (benefit reform) and let’s not forget it was the private sector that put the economy in the mess that it is in, where is the outcry for companies like Goldman Sachs where the lower end Wall Street employee bonus averaged $125,000 not including salary, all after they received 20 billion in tax payer bailouts, then gave out the following year 22 billion in bonuses.

      The bottom line is the community can no longer afford “not” to maintain an adequately staffed fire department.

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