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Sit the F*ck Down and Buckle Up


Well I guess that headline got your attention-good. It’s supposed to. Offended? Not my intention but please get the f*ck over it and keep reading — what should be offensive is the following.

Each year some Firefighters die in the Line of Duty because they had to, the conditions indicated the risk in saving a life was worth taking-and tragically they died. They are the great minority, the ones who die because there was a clear risk worth taking in attempting to save a life.

Nothing new — the majority of Line of Duty deaths prove (after the investigations) that they often could have been avoided…and we try to learn from all of them.

When I was a young Firefighter in the early 70’s, one of the things I enjoyed most was standing up and looking forward (over the cab) when our apparatus responded. To me, it was the ultimate opportunity to see “what we had” (size up?) as we turned out. Back then we also used porto-powers, we thought Jet-Axes were a good idea and we kept our SCBA’s in boxes (all two of them on Rescue 30 plus the officer had a 15 minute pak) JUST IN CASE the fire and smoke was really bad. That was in the 1970’s.

Since then, smart people decided putting company officers in 15 minute air paks wasn’t a particularly good idea, Jet Axes didn’t work as we thought (ask me about my intimate experience with a Jet Axe sometime) and a company named Hurst invented a tool that changed how we extricate people forever … and because FIREFIGHTERS were FALLING OFF apparatus when standing (in the open seat area, the running boards and tail boards) … that maybe we should be seated and belted. Good firefighters thinking they were doing the right thing fell off and got killed. So we stopped doing that many years ago for a variety of reasons.

Everyone Goes Home: Seatbelt Pledge

Lawyers are a big part of why we are expected to be seated and belted. Keep read’n.

IF you have never experienced what it is like to stand up, unsecured and look over the cab while responding, you now have a chance to experience that today, thanks to these Firefighters who, in December of 2014-this month, decided that it was OK to stand up during their response.

In December, traditionally one of the WORST months for Firefighter deaths, as we saw yesterday as two more Firefighters gave their lives.

When I saw this video, I thought that I just wanted to tell these kids to….


Trust me, your parents, girlfriend, boyfriend or whoever would expect nothing less. We would hope the Chief doesn’t support this — after all the Chief would be named if you were killed. Trust us. So would the President of your FD. Trust us.

There is a lot HEROIC about being a Firefighter — but there is NOTHING HEROIC about getting tossed out of a responding rig because you wanna stand and your pal wants to videotape. THINK.


These people would thank you….

  • Irwin “Buzz” Gross (Google me)
  • Joseph Tynan (Google me too!)
  • Neil Rossman (Google me but you don’t ever want to meet me)
  • Peter Pirsch (I wish the above two people had never met – or I would still be in business)

It’s 2014 — Sit The F*CK Down and buckle in. We have already had heroes die in the Line of Duty years ago because they didn’t know any better. Today-doing the same is blatant stupidity and disregard for those that died years ago, those who didn’t know any better — because in 2014, we know better.

And take a moment to read these:

Written by First Arriving


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