Archive for March, 2019

KSFFA Regional Fire School – Dickinson Co. Fire Dist. #2 – October

KSFFA Regional Fire School
Hosted by Hope Fire Department
October 5-6, 2019
Location: Hope High School

 

Saturday Morning

  1. Engine Company Ops – 8 hours
  2. Rural Water Supply – 8 hours
  3. Basic Skills (including Firefighter Safety/Survival) – 8 hours
  4. Building Collapse – 4 hours
  5. Emergency Vehicle Operations – 4 hours – CE Hours
  6. Westar Energy Electrical Class – 2 1/2 hours

Saturday Afternoon

  1. Engine Company Ops, cont.
  2. Rural Water Supply, cont.
  3. Basic Skills, cont.
  4. Ventilation – 4 hours
  5. Westar Energy Electrical Class – 2 1/2 hours

Sunday Morning

  1. Thermal Imaging
  2. Propane Safety
  3. Fire Behavior

Sunday NOON

  1. KSFFA Burn Trailer

Contact Info – Chief Chad Lorson, 785-366-6697 or Steve Hirsch, KSFFA Secretary, 785-470-7120

  • These courses are offered at no charge.
  • These schools are open to all firefighters/EMS
  • The KSFFA furnishes medical insurance for all participants.
  • The KSFFA is not responsible for lost or damaged clothing or equipment.
  • If you desire to have Firefighter One or Two testing, this must be pre-registered through Kansas Fire & Rescue Training Institute.
  • The KSFFA offers fit testing with its porta-count machine at all regional fire school.

 

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OSFM Welcomes Fire Investigator Quillan Houser

The Office of the State Fire Marshal is pleased to welcome Quillan Houser, who has joined the team as a fire investigator in Shawnee, Jackson, Douglas, Jefferson, Leavenworth, Wyandotte, and Johnson Counties. Quillan comes to OSFM from Washburn University, where he worked as a police officer for the past four years. He brings seven years of law enforcement experience to the position.

Quillan lives in Topeka with his wife, Hope, their son, Zeke, who is 11 months old, and Wieder, (pronounced Veeder) his chocolate lab/mastiff mix. He enjoys playing softball and watching Chiefs and Royals games.

“Throughout my law enforcement career, I was always interested in fire investigation,” Quillan said. “This position is a perfect fit for me, and I am excited for the opportunity.”

 

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Responders train for grain bin rescues

Emergency responders from multiple agencies are training in Chanute for grain bin rescues through Task Force 4.

The task force is part of Homeland Security and includes responders from emergency services of Neosho Memorial Regional Medical Center and Labette Health, and fire departments in Pittsburg, Iola, Parsons, Chanute and Neodesha. The exercise was funded through the Southeast Kansas Homeland Security Council.

Dale Lowry, Chanute Fire Department and Task Force 4 Coordinator, said the group trains on a regular basis and has at least one funded exercise a year. Wednesday was the first day of a three-day event, depending on the weather.

Midwest Search and Rescue provided training instruction. The group is a non-profit organization made up of retired emergency responders.

The exercise is east of Chanute at a group of retired grain bins owned by Beachner Grain, which also supplied two truckloads of corn.

The trainees rotated through three stations where they learned how to build cofferdams, handle ropes and knots, or – in a tube called the “fun house” – deal with victims engulfed by grain. Participants train about an hour at each station, and afterwards the three groups combine in a scenario to rescue a victim from an actual bin.

Some participants will attend more than one day for training in different disciplines to meet specific job performance requirements.

Moisture can cause grain to clump together, Lowry said, forming a top crust while the farmer takes grain out of the bottom of the bin. Sometimes a farmer will go into the bin to break up the crust, then becomes engulfed by the grain.

Once caught, the grain acts like quicksand, and Lowry said being buried only up to the knees can trap someone. Cofferdams must be placed around the victim to keep him from sinking deeper. Any movement on top of the grain can push the victim down further, Lowry said, so sometimes rescuers must lower down from the top of the bin without touching the grain.

Lowry said people expect responders to simply yank the victim out, but they don’t.

“It’s a slow, methodical process,” he said.

If rescuers must cut into the bin to release the grain, Lowry said, they must cut on both sides or the bin will collapse.

The victim for the exercise is a mannequin called Rescue Randy, and there are four of them here. Unlike a department store mannequin, Rescue Randy weighs 170 pounds, has bendable joints and a soft and pliable texture, like a person.

Lowry said corn, used in the exercise, will react the same as other grains like wheat, milo, soybeans or even Ash Grove cement.

 

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Lexipol

Joining Forces to Improve Public Safety

We’re proud to partner with Kansas State Firefighters Association to provide solutions that reduce risk, enhance personnel safety and improve operational excellence.

Below are samplings of our educational content and free resources. Please share this with your associates and/or members.

  • “Addressing Firefighter Deviation from Policy” explains initial actions to take when confronting policy deviation as well as how to prevent further violations through a process of thorough investigation and understanding. 
  • Plus, I wanted to share with you the most prevalent fire training topics in 2018, here.

And, in case you missed it, Lexipol just provided a free fire-focused webinar entitled “The Data-Driven Fire Department: Using Analytics to Improve Operations and Reduce Firefighter Risks.” You can access the webinar on-demand, any time. Click to access the on-demand webinar now. 

Fire Science Students Will get Live Burn Experience

The LHS Fire Science students will engage in their first live burn experience beginning at 830am on Wednesday, April 3rd. This event will take place at the Liberal Fire Department’s Station 2, located on East Pine St.

The Kansas Fire and Rescue Training Institute, located at the University of Kansas, is bringing the live burn trailer which will allow students to make interior fire attacks at grade level, above grade level, and below grade level. The students make entry into an involved structure fire and employ direct, indirect, and combination fire attacks.

This is an event the students and teacher Wex Fox have been anticipating for quite some time. The activity will use many of the skills they’ve learned—donning bunker gear and SCBA (PPE); working in teams; advancing charged hose line; communications; interior fire attack methods; and retreating as a hose team, among others. The KU Burn Trailer gives them this opportunity to use those skills in live conditions and fulfills one of two requirements needed for the Local Verification Form.

 

Posted by Gwen Dorr Romine, KSFFA Webmaster
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Job Opening – Deputy Fire Chief – McPherson Fire Department

 

For information visit https://www.mcpcity.com/DocumentCenter/View/3191/Deputy-Fire-Chief-Job-Description

 

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Arkansas City Fire Department push-in new fire engine

Community members helped the Arkansas City Fire Department push its new fire truck into the station Saturday afternoon to place it officially in service. Fire Chief Bobby Wolfe said the tradition dates back to when fire apparatus were hand- or horse-drawn, which required members of the fire company to push engines back ‘into quarters.’

 

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KCKFD’s newest team member

The Kansas City, Kansas, Fire Department unveiled a new member to its team Monday.

Meet Zoom, a 2-year-old Labrador retriever.

The fire department said Zoom is a “live find K9,” which means he is trained to search for and locate trapped or lost human victims.

“Zoom locates a human scent and narrows the ‘source odor’ to a small area and gives a continuous barking alert until his handler arrives at that location,” the department said in a Facebook post.

Zoom’s handler is Mike Searcy, of the KCKFD, and he lives with the Searcy family when he’s not on duty.

“Zoom is the first live find K9 in the metro,” the department said. “Handler Searcy and Zoom is also available for mutual-aid request by other metro agencies.”

 

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Edgerton, FD#1 partner for plan

Edgerton will soon partner with Johnson County Fire District No.1 to develop a comprehensive emergency preparedness plan to be used in case of a major disaster.
Trig Morley, FD No.1 battalion chief, said the formalization of an emergency preparedness plan will put the community in a better position to deal with major emergencies and serves as an important tool in the recovery process.
Morley said at the March 14 council meeting that the comprehensive plan is geared towards dealing with all kinds of emergencies including floods, tornadoes and even disease outbreaks and epidemics.
“It’s an all-hazards approach,” he said.
He said the plan assigns responsibility for carrying out specific actions during an emergency and sets forth lines of authority and organizational relationships ensuring that all actions are coordinated.
The plan, which will be based on Kansas Planner, a statewide tool developed by the state government, will integrate with the Johnson County Emergency Preparedness Plan.
Morley said the process of developing the plan will include an analysis of hazards, testing the plan and outlining the basis for its maintenance and revision.
“It’s nice to make the plan community specific,” he said adding that for example Edgerton would need to consider rail traffic as a hazard that may not be present in other areas.
Included in the plan is the establishment of an emergency operations center from which to coordinate all activities during an emergency.
He said the center needs to be both physical and virtual and integrate with incident command system.
Morley said that plan will also incorporate a Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP) which specifies alternative places for city workers to perform their duties in case of disruption.
Don Roberts, mayor, asked how long it would take to complete the plan.
“It’s a multi-year process. Get started now and get caught up,” Morley said.
Ron Conus, councilmember said the plan needs to be kept simple.

 

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Stevens County conducts “structure training” workshop

The Stevens County Emergency Services department held a “structure training” workshop this Saturday, March 23rd. Members of the department burnt a house completely to the ground and then prevented the fire from spreading.

Before the house was engulfed in flames, emergency personnel performed a search and rescue mission.

As the weather gets warmers, wildfires are more likely to spread and workshops like this are useful for training purposes.

 

Posted by Gwen Dorr Romine, KSFFA Webmaster
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OSFM Welcomes Dirk Christian as New Emergency Response Division Chief

The Office of the State Fire Marshal is pleased to welcome Dirk Christian, who has joined the team as the Emergency Response Division Chief. Dirk comes to OSFM from the University of Kansas, where he was the Fire Officer Program Manager for the Kansas Fire & Rescue Training Institute. He has worked in the public safety and emergency services, with a 30-year military service career.

Dirk lives in Topeka with his wife, Amy, and has three children, Kylie, Alyssa and Jake. He also has a dog, Marley and a cat, Luna. He enjoys woodworking, camping, fishing and hunting in his spare time.

“I truly enjoy working with emergency services special operations,” Dirk said. “I have developed a unique set of experiences over the years through my involvement with the Kansas fire service and all of my experiences with the US Army and Army National Guard. As I retired from the military last year, I have pursued the ability to continue to work in these areas of public safety and this position. As the ER Division Chief for OSFM, it will allow me to continue to pursue my passion for service to state and to the nation.”

 

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Salina Fire K-9 Has Rare Skills

The Salina Fire Department has a member of its team who has rare skills. The agency’s K-9 is one of only two dogs of his kind in the country.

The Salina Fire Department has a new tool, in one of only two K-9s of its kind in the country.

According to the City of Salina, Fire Marshal Troy Long and his K-9 Hoke tested and passed their Foundation Skills Assessment with five other teams from the Kansas Task Force K-9 Unit on March 16th at Crisis City.

The team is now deployable assets for live-find disaster search in Kansas.

Hoke has now become one of two working K-9s in the United States to be certified as a dual purpose K-9 in accelerant detection/search and rescue. He is also one of three fire department based search dogs in the State of Kansas.

Over the next five weeks Long and Hoke will be preparing for a FEMA certification which makes them deployable anywhere in the United States.

“These K-9s are an invaluable resource not just across the state of Kansas, but the country. They have the ability to search and locate living victims trapped in structures and debris caused by natural and manmade disasters in a very short amount of time,” said Long.

 

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Kenneth Linot named Kansas VFW State Firefighter of the Year

Kenneth Linot, Derby Firefighter II, center left, was selected as the Kansas VFW 2018-19 State Firefighter of the Year. With him is, from left, Mayor Randy White; Jay Boyle, VFW Commander, VFW Post 7253; and Vance Hill, VFW Fifth District senior vice commander.

For Kenneth Linot, the major reward in his job as a Derby firefighter is clear: helping people in need and giving back to the community.

Linot, who has been with the department full time since 2012, was selected as the Kansas VFW 2018-19 State Firefighter of the Year.

He was presented with the award by VFW officials at the March 12 City Council meeting.

Linot said he is “very humbled.”

“It was unexpected,” he said. “Just something out of the blue.”

Linot was nominated for the award by Fire Chief Brad Smith, who cited Linot’s many career activities and accomplishments including being part of a team that rescued an elderly resident from his burning home in November 2016.

It was hard to pick out one individual in the department, Smith said, because “everyone carries the load,” but Linot is a solid representative of the staff.

“He’s a good reflection of what the department is all about,” he said. “It does make you proud.”

For his part, Linot credits his fellow firefighters for making his job go well.

Linot, 30, is a 2007 Rose Hill High School graduate. He went on to earn an associate’s degree in fire science from Butler Community College and has held a number of ranks and training levels including EMT, Fire Investigator I, hazardous materials technician and first responder for disasters.

He works extensively in education and fire prevention, including working with children who are involved in fire setting to help them understand the dangers of that activity.

Linot also works with high school students to give them an opportunity to see what the career entails.

Furthermore, he heads up Derby’s fire prevention program working with schools to educate young people.

In addition, he’s a volunteer with the Rose Hill and Douglass Fire Departments.

He lives in Douglass with his wife, Shawnell, and their three children.

Fire service runs in the blood line of the Linot family. His father, Melvin, is the deputy chief for Butler County’s Fire District No. 3, which his great grandfather helped start. His grandfather also was fire chief.

His older brothers also helped out as Rose Hill volunteers and one brother is now a fire marshal in Olathe.

When they were all in Rose Hill, there were many times when they got to meet up with each other – because they all responded to the same call.

Smith said Linot’s full slate of activities outside of responding to emergencies is an indication of what the field is like now.

“It’s not just sitting around waiting for the next call,” he said.

There is a lot of civic interaction, including education.

And Linot’s work in that regard has been especially important to Derby, he said.

“To me, fire prevention is one of the most important things we do,” he said.

 

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Fort Scott Fire Department to receive new engines and equipment

Every 25 years fire departments are mandated to refurbish their current engine to meet regulations or get a new one.

The Fort Scott fire department is in the process of getting a new engine with a ladder that will cost about $1.4 million, and another to hold water that will run about $400,000.

Rhonda Dunn, the Director of Finance for Fort Scott says, “We are currently looking into the retirement of two of our fire trucks and replacing two of those with newer fire trucks. We’re looking at all possibilities, were looking at all possibilities in hopes to find the best solution for our community.”

And the station and the city are still in the early stages of narrowing down their selections, but there are plenty of things to consider before they make their purchase.

“When you live in an old town, the 1800’s we have to be careful that it can maneuver the streets that we have. Also, we have a very low railroad bridge it has to go under, and so we have to consider the height of the equipment, the weight, the width and make sure it fits with our community,” she says.

And in addition to the engines, the fire department has plans to add new oxygen tanks to their fleet. Through the assistance to Firefighters Grant and a contribution from the city, the organization will be able to make the much needed upgrade.

Dave Bruner, deputy fire chief for the Fort Scott fire department says, “These air packs we have are 2004 models and 15 years, the bottles are actually obsolete so we would have to spend money to replace those bottles when we had an opportunity to go for a grant to purchase all the SCBA’s complete.”

The department plans to receive their new oxygen tanks by August. And the contribution from the grant and the city total to about $104,000.

Video

 

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Job Opening – Assistant Fire Director/EMT – Stafford County

Stafford County Board of Commissioners is accepting applications for an Assistant Fire
Director/EMT. This position will require a motivated individual with good personnel,
computer and managerial skills.
Qualified applicants should possess Firefighter 1 training, NIMS 100, 200, 700
certifications and a working knowledge of incident command or be willing to be trained
in this discipline. Applicant must be certified as a Kansas EMT.
Applicant must be willing to reside in St. John.
Salary is commensurate with experience and education. Stafford County offers an
excellent fringe benefit package. The job description and application are available at the
Stafford County Clerk’s Office, 209 N. Broadway, St. John, Kansas, (620) 549-3509.
Applications will be accepted until position is filled.
Stafford County is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

 

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Seven fire departments receive grant

Firehouse Subs and their Public Safety Foundation awarded $126,749 worth of lifesaving equipment grants to seven Kansas fire departments.

The dedication took place at the restaurant on North Greenwich Road Tuesday afternoon.

Those receiving the grants were the following:

Burrton Consolidated Fire District #5
City of Russell Fire Department
Clearwater Emergency Services 48
Hutchinson Fire Department
Reno EMS at Hutchinson Regional Medical Center
Sumner County Fire District 8
Valley Center Fire Department

Video

 

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Water Supply from the Nozzle Back Hosted by: Harvey County Emergency Services Training Academy

This class will deal with moving water on the fire scene. Whether rural, suburban, or urban, water is delivered to the target via a nozzle. As fire professionals we have to know what the nozzle can do. A successful nozzle team is totally dependent on a properly supplied hose for the nozzle selected.
-We will address all types of nozzles, but the main class emphases will be on what YOU have.
-We will discuss hose sizes and friction loss of the hose you carry.
-We will practice different types of supply methods with a practical exercise in rural ops.

Show up ready to learn a few things and participate. It will be fast paced with discussion of your equipment, from CAFs to booster lines. We will touch on it all.

More Info & Sign up form

 

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Retirement – Captain Larry Peters – Topeka Fire Department

More than 27 years ago a friend of Captain Larry Peters said he was going to take a test to become a firefighter.

“I said, ‘well, hey, I’m going to take the test too.’ He didn’t pass. I did. And I got the job,” Peter said.

The rest was history.

He joined the Topeka Fire Department in 1992 and since then he’s not a lot to be proud of.

Cleaning up the TFD

Capt. Peters is in charge of taking care of the bunker gear. He makes sure the gear is repaired when necessary and cleaned regularly.

“When I first came on the job we did not clean our gear. And we wore it dirty. And to some guys, the mark of a good fireman was having dirty gear,” he explained.

He helped change the way the department takes care of the gear.

A lot of things such as carcinogens collect on the gear over time and he makes sure it is safe at all times.

“The man makes the man. The gear does not make the man. So you will see the majority of firefighters wearing clean gear today. It doesn’t mean that they don’t fight fire. It means that we wash our gear today. And that’s one of the very things that I’m proud of,” he added.

Saving Lives

Fifteen years ago, Capt. Peters and another firefighter won the department’s second highest medal for their quick action that saved two firefighter’s lives.

“They fell through the burned out stairs. And somehow, I don’t know how we did it, we pulled him up and Gill and I pulled him up out of the basement, and I don’t know how we did it,” he remembered.

He says he jumped into action without a second thought, and he said it’s just part of the job.

Becoming Captain

Six years ago, he became Captain.

He made Station No. 6 in the Oakland Neighborhood his second home and embraced the community.

He also helped save the fire hydrant that sits right outside of the station. He gathered several local artists and community members who helped decorate the hydrant with drawings that reflect the community.

Shawn Frank with the Topeka Fire Department said his Captain has become very popular.

“We always have people come here all the time looking for him, dropping cookies off, dropping food off. You know coming to say hi,” he said.

Peters said his time in Oakland have been some of the best years of his life.

Saying Goodbye

While there have been so many great moments in his past, Capt. Peters is looking forward to his next chapter.

He will retire in the middle of March.

“I have a beautiful wife at home that’s waiting for me to come spend time with,” he said with a smile.

He said there is a lot he is sad to leave behind.

“I’m going to miss the men that I work with, the people that I work with. I’m going to miss seeing the people in the community here,” he said.

However he said he’s just happy to have had a fulfilling career.

“I’ve always found something for the last 15 years of my career to find something to be involved with and help out the department and do more,” he said.

Firefighters at Station No. 6 say whoever comes in next will have some big shoes to fill.

Video

 

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NOTICE OF VACANCY – Senior Administrative Assistant – Requisition #192491 – Closes 4/2/2019

The Office of the State Fire Marshal (OSFM) has an opening for a Full-time Unclassified Senior Administrative Assistant.

Duties will include, but are not limited to the following:

  • administrative assistant to the Emergency Response Division and other divisions as needed;
  • composes correspondence, memorandums and reports as needed;
  • route calls and e-mails to appropriate unit staff;
  • creates and maintains multiple databases;
  • coordinates various meetings, arranging dates, times and locations;
  • handles notifications and/or mailings;
  • takes and distributes meeting minutes and other associated responsibilities;
  • staff support to the HazMat and Search and Rescue Advisory Committees;
  • handles accounting tasks for the division to insure all expenses/reimbursements resulting from contracts or authorized incidents are paid within established guidelines;
  • works with other state agencies and federal entities to manage all state and federal grant funds allocated to the division;
  • writes and submits timely reports to meet grant obligations;
  • travel and overnight stays to assist with conference and/or symposium registration and provide administrative support is required.

Pay Rate: $13.61 per hour

Minimum Requirements:

  • One-year experience in general office, clerical and administrative support work.
  • Education may be substituted for experience as determined relevant by the agency.
  • Must have a current, valid Kansas driver’s license.

Preferred Skills:

  • strong computer skills especially with Microsoft Word, Excel and Access

Performance Standards:

To be successful, the expectation is that a candidate will be able to competently perform the routine tasks of the position with limited supervision within six (6) months of hire date.

HOW TO APPLY:  The application process has 3 STEPS:
STEP 1:  Register by completing the online Personal Data Form  (Skip this step if you already have an Applicant ID or Employee ID number).
STEP 2:  Complete the official State of Kansas application form  (include all employment and experience) and submit to the Fire Marshal.
STEP 3:  Email the additional required documents to brenda.schuette@ks.gov.

Include your name and job requisition number on all correspondence when submitting documents. 

Required Documents:

  • Online State of Kansas Application form sent to Fire Marshal
  • Cover Letter
  • Resume
  • College Transcripts, if applicable
  • Copy of all Training Certificates
  • current valid Kansas Tax Clearance Certificate
  • send to Brenda Schuette, brenda.schuette@ksfm.ks.gov

Your application will be considered incomplete and you will be found ineligible if you fail to submit the required documentation by the closing date of the vacancy announcement.

KANSAS TAX CLEARANCE CERTIFICATE REQUIRED
Each applicant applying for a State of Kansas job vacancy must obtain a valid Kansas Certificate of Tax Clearance by accessing the Kansas Department of Revenue’s website.  Your application will be considered incomplete if not submitted by the closing date of the job posting.

A Tax Clearance is a comprehensive tax account review to determine and ensure that an individual’s account is compliant with all primary Kansas Tax Laws.  A Tax Clearance expires every 90 days.  Applicants, including current State employees, are responsible for submitting a valid certificate with all other application materials to the hiring agency.  This is in accordance with Executive Order 2004-03.  If you need assistance with the tax clearance, please contact 785-296-3199.

Your application will be considered incomplete if an ACUTAL COPY of your certificate is not submitted on or before the vacancy closing date.

Recruiter Contact Information:
Name:  Brenda L. Schuette
Phone: 785-296-0654
Email: brenda.schuette@ks.gov

Process for Selection:  Upon receipt of your complete application packet, an evaluation of your qualifications will be conducted, and your status based on the established minimum requirements, and preferred selection criteria for the specific vacancy will be determined.  Based on your ranking in comparison with other applicants, you may/may not be referred for further consideration and/or possible interview.  If you are not selected for the vacancy, you will be notified within 30 days of the position being filled.

Reasonable Accommodation Policy Statement:  The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 ensures you the right to reasonable accommodations.  A request for an accommodation will not affect your opportunities for employment with the State of Kansas.  Arrangements will be made if you have a disability that requires an accommodation for completing an application form, interviewing or any other part of the employment process.  It is your responsibility to make your needs known to the OSFM Recruitment Office at 785-296-0654.

The Office of the State Fire Marshal is an Equal Opportunity Employer

 

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KSFFA Regional Fire School – Plainville – June 2019

KSFFA Regional Fire School
Hosted by Plainville Fire Department
June 1-2, 2019
Location: Plainville High School, 202 SE Cardinal Avenue

Saturday – 8 a.m.

  1. Farm & Vehicle Extrication – 12 hrs.
  2. Rural & Suburban Water Supply – 8 hrs.
  3. Emergency Vehicle Operations – 8 hrs.
  4. KSFFA Skills Trailer (Ventilation, Firefighter Safety and Survival, RIT) – 12 hrs

Sunday – 8 a.m.

  1. Farm & Vehicle Extrication – cont.
  2. KSFFA Skills Trailer – cont.
  3. Wildland Fire (KSFFA)
  4. Building Construction
  5. Fire Cause & Determination

Sunday – NOON

  1. KSFFA Burn Trailer

Contact Info: Plainville Fire Chief Craig Wise 785-434-6406, cwise@cityofplainville-ks.gov or KSFFA NW Trustee Justin Couse 785-420-0465, justincouse1973@hotmail.com

  • These courses are offered at no charge.
  • These schools are open to all firefighters/EMS
  • The KSFFA furnishes medical insurance for all participants.
  • The KSFFA is not responsible for lost or damaged clothing or equipment.
  • If you desire to have Firefighter One or Two testing, this must be pre-registered through Kansas Fire & Rescue Training Institute.
  • The KSFFA offers fit testing with its porta-count machine at all regional fire school.

 

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Fire damages heavy rescue vehicle at Paola fire station

Paola firefighters didn’t have to go far to respond to a fire call that came in at about 2 p.m. Tuesday, March 5.

In fact, it was a Paola firefighter who made the call after realizing that the front cab of the department’s heavy rescue truck was on fire.

Deputy Fire Chief Bruce Hartig said the vehicle was pulled out of the bay earlier in the day and parked outside the station while firefighters performed standard maintenance. When a couple of firefighters went to drive the vehicle back inside, they discovered flames coming out of the dash area.

Hartig said he is proud of his firefighters who worked quickly to call in the fire and put out the flames using a fire extinguisher. If left unchecked for a few more seconds, Hartig said the flames likely would have burst through the front windshield and spread to the exterior of the vehicle.

Despite their quick work, the flames charred the front dash, and smoke heavily damaged the rest of the vehicle.

Some of the equipment lost in the fire includes a thermal imager valued at about $10,000 and a new 800 MHz radio system also valued at about $10,000. The radio system was installed in the vehicle about two weeks before the fire.

Hartig said the fire appears to be electrical in origin, but an exact cause has not yet been determined. Firefighters quickly sealed off the vehicle’s front cab with caution tape so the scene could be investigated by officials from the Office of the State Fire Marshal.

City leaders told members of the Paola City Council, during a work session March 5, that the city’s insurance company EMC also plans to have an electrical engineer investigate the scene.

Meanwhile, Hartig and his fellow firefighters were left with the difficult task of trying to find a way to replace a vehicle that goes on nearly every fire call that comes into the station.

Luckily, Hartig said, less than a week earlier Miami County Fire District No. 1’s new Engine 5 arrived from Ohio, and fire district officials agreed to allow Paola firefighters to transfer over equipment and turn the engine into a temporary heavy rescue vehicle.

The equipment includes extrication tools, air cascade system for filling bottles, and confined space equipment, among others, Hartig said.

Because the engine also still features a water system and hoses, Hartig is calling it a rescue pumper.

Hartig said the damaged heavy rescue truck cost the city about $265,000 when it was purchased in 2007, and city officials said during the work session that it just had been paid off.

Job Opening – Fire Chief – Lawrence Fire Department

Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical is a progressive, fast-paced organization committed to the pursuit of excellence, providing fully-integrated EMS and Fire Services to the City of Lawrence community. This commitment to excellence has yielded international accreditation through the Commission on Fire Accreditation International, and an Insurance Services Offices (ISO) rating of 1; one of only five departments state-wide and seventy-one internationally with this distinction. Ideal candidates for this position will possess superior communication skills, passion for public service and the community, and a predisposition for creativity and innovation.

RESPONSIBILITIES: Direct and review the strategic planning, organizational activities and operations, and executive-level administration of the Fire Medical Department. This includes all emergency medical and ambulance services, fire suppression, prevention, technical services and administration across seven stations and two support facilities with 143 sworn staff and supplemental civilian support teams. Coordinate assigned activities with other city departments and outside agencies; inform and evaluate City Policies and Procedures regarding Emergency Management; provide highly responsible and complex administrative support to the City Manager.

QUALIFICATIONS: Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with major course work in fire science, emergency medical care, public administration, or a closely related field. Ten years of increasingly responsible command experience in an organized fire and emergency medical department including four to six years of high-level command, administrative, and supervisory responsibility. Experience working with an ISO-1 rated department and familiarity with accreditation process preferred. Must establish permanent residence within the incorporated boundaries of the City of Lawrence, Kansas within the first six (6) months after date of employment. Possession of, or ability to obtain, a valid KS driver’s license and Kansas Registry EMT or Paramedic license by date of hire.

MUST SUBMIT ONLINE APPLICATION BY:
Monday, April 8th, 2018
WWW.LAWRENCEKS.ORG/JOBS

 

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NOTICE OF VACANCY – Information Technology Manager – Requisition #192381 – CLOSES 3/25/2019*

The Office of the State Fire Marshal (OSFM) has an opening for an Unclassified Information Technology Manager.  This vacancy closed 3/25/2019.

Duties will include, but are not limited to the following:

  • managing and delivering the daily operations of all agency information technology systems and activities;
  • establish and implement long-term goals, policies, and procedures for the information technology unit;
  • provide all network infrastructure requirements;
  • recommend system enhancements;
  • determine long-term systems needs
  • and hardware/software acquisitions

Pay Rate:  $65,000.00 annually; can vary depending upon experience and qualifications.

Minimum Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree in computer science or related field
  • and five years’ experience in information systems and analysis;
  • or seven years’ experience in information systems and analysis.
  • Additional experience may be substituted for the required education as determined relevant by the agency.
  • Must have a current, valid Kansas driver’s license.

Preferred Skills:

  • Thorough knowledge of computer capabilities, equipment techniques and personnel utilization.
  • Thorough knowledge of activities related to voice, video and data communications, computer processing, work processing and database concepts.
  • Extensive knowledge of user agency information technology requirements and the ability to integrate these into software plans.
  • Ability to prepare technical and non-technical reports in a clear and concise manner both orally and in writing.
  • Ability to communicate effectively.
  • MCSC, CISCO Firewall experience, SQL Server, Server 2003, Server 2008R2 & Hyper V, and Server 2012 Operating System experience
  • Windows XP Client, Windows 7 and Windows 8 experience and Network experience desired.

HOW TO APPLY:  The application process has 3 STEPS:

STEP 1:  Register by completing the online Personal Data Form (Skip this step if you already have an Applicant ID or Employee ID number).

STEP 2:  Complete the official State of Kansas application form (include all employment and experience) and submit to the Fire Marshal.

STEP 3:  Email the additional required documents to brenda.schuette@ks.gov .

Include your name and job requisition number on all correspondence when submitting documents. 

Required Documents:

  • Online State of Kansas Application form sent to Fire Marshal
  • Cover Letter
  • Resume
  • College Transcripts
  • Copy of all Training Certificates
  • current valid Kansas Tax Clearance Certificate
  • send to Brenda Schuette, brenda.schuette@ksfm.ks.gov

Your application will be considered incomplete and you will be found ineligible if you fail to submit the required documentation by the closing date of the vacancy announcement.

KANSAS TAX CLEARANCE CERTIFICATE REQUIRED

Each applicant applying for a State of Kansas job vacancy must obtain a valid Kansas Certificate of Tax Clearance by accessing the Kansas Department of Revenue’s website at http://www.ksrevenue.org/taxclearance.html.  Your application will be considered incomplete if not submitted by the closing date of the job posting.

A Tax Clearance is a comprehensive tax account review to determine and ensure that an individual’s account is compliant with all primary Kansas Tax Laws.  A Tax Clearance expires every 90 days.  Applicants, including current State employees, are responsible for submitting a valid certificate with all other application materials to the hiring agency.  This is in accordance with Executive Order 2004-03.  If you need assistance with the tax clearance, please contact 785-296-3199.

Your application will be considered incomplete if an ACUTAL COPY of your certificate is not submitted on or before the vacancy closing date.

Recruiter Contact Information:

Name:  Brenda L. Schuette

Phone: 785-296-0654

Email: brenda.schuette@ks.gov

Process for Selection:  Upon receipt of your complete application packet, an evaluation of your qualifications will be conducted, and your status based on the established minimum requirements, and preferred selection criteria for the specific vacancy will be determined.  Based on your ranking in comparison with other applicants, you may/may not be referred for further consideration and/or possible interview.  If you are not selected for the vacancy, you will be notified within 30 days of the position being filled.

Reasonable Accommodation Policy Statement:  The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 ensures you the right to reasonable accommodations.  A request for an accommodation will not affect your opportunities for employment with the State of Kansas.  Arrangements will be made if you have a disability that requires an accommodation for completing an application form, interviewing or any other part of the employment process.  It is your responsibility to make your needs known to the OSFM Recruitment Office at 785-296-0654.

*The Office of the State Fire Marshal is an Equal Opportunity Employer*

 

 

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Dodge City Fire Department history

Dodge City Hose Team. Two notable members were Wyatt Earp and Ed Masterson.

According to their mission, they are charged with serving the citizens of Dodge City through protection of life and property from losses from fire or other natural or man-made emergency situations.

Dodge City was founded in 1872, but it wasn’t until 1876 the privately owned Dodge City Fire Company formed with P.L. Beatty as its first Chief. Finally in 1887, the City formally established the Dodge City Fire Department. It was the three major fires in 1885 which led to the establishment of a municipal department. These fires were huge, each destroying entire city blocks.

Merely a day before the first fire struck on Jan. 18, 1885, one of the four of Dodge City newspapers, “Kansas Cowboy,” printed “Dodge City is a little paradise for fire insurance companies…” Before that date, there had been no disastrous fires because Dodge City had been a 24-hour town and there was always somebody awake and alert enough to put out fires or sound an alarm.

The first inferno started in a grocery store and burned eight businesses to the ground. The next devastating fire held off until November 29, 1885 when fire engulfed the block on Front Street between First and Second Avenues. The third fire came only 10 days later and destroyed the block just north of Walnut (Gunsmoke) between First and Second.

These three fires were disastrous financially. The second fire alone cost over $150,000 which is close to four million in 2019 dollars. The heart of Dodge City burned in these three blazes. Among the 14 businesses destroyed in the second fire were the iconic establishments of Delmonico’s Restaurant, Zimmermann’s Hardware, the Long Branch Saloon, Hoover’s Liquor Store and R.M. Wright & Company General Store.

This series of conflagrations would have killed most towns, but like a phoenix, Dodge City rose from the ashes. This was most apparent when Robert M. Wright contracted to have a replacement building constructed as his store was still burning. Dodge City’s newly formed Fire Department quickly made a name for itself when its 15 man fire hose team broke a world record at the 1887 Annual Fireman’s Tournament in Denver. Eleven men pulled a hose cart 450 feet, while two men pulled 100 feet of hose and hooked it to a hydrant, and the other two men shot a stream of water at least 20 feet.

They did all this in just a little under 32 seconds – a record which still stands. For this, the men won $800 (over $21,000 in 2019 money) and a silver fireman’s trumpet which is now at Boot Hill Museum.

It is uncertain where the first fire station was located.

Chalkley Beeson was the first Fire Chief and held the office until 1909. In 1888, Dodge City built a City Hall at Second and Trail which contained the U.S. Land Office, City offices and Fire Department. For the next 33 years the Department was housed there until moving to 313 Walnut (Gunsmoke) in 1921. In 1929, they moved into the new City Hall on Boot Hill. In 1950, the Department opened a south station at 105 South Second, which was replaced in 1995 by the current south station at 709 South 14th. In the meantime in 1990, they dedicated station at 201 Soule Street after moving out of the City Hall building.

Today Dodge City these two stations are manned by paid firefighters and EMT’s. They, along with the Ford County Fire Department, work hard to protect Dodge Citians from fires and to assist during medical emergencies.

Two notable people who have worked for the Dodge City Fire Department: Wyatt Earp and Bat Masterson’s brother, Ed.

 

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Looking for historic fire stations in Kansas

Fire stations have been a landmark in Kansas communities since the early days of statehood. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, but each one has contributed a great deal to the history of its community. The Kansas Historical Society is looking for firehouses across the state in an effort to document them for posterity and recognize their stories. Do you have a historic firehouse built before 1975 in your city or community? Know of an older fire station serving a rural or volunteer fire department?  We would love to hear about it! Send us a picture, date of the firehouse, and city or address when available. Email information about the stations to kshs.shpo@ks.gov.

 

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Hutchinson Fire Department awards

 

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Walton Fire Department promotions

The Walton Fire Department recently promoted several of its volunteers, moving those with experience into its top leadership roles and assigning a new role to former Chief Merlyn Johnson.

Johnson started volunteering as a firefighter in 1986 and has officially served as Walton’s fire chief for the past 14 years.

“We don’t get many cats out of trees. …We got a parrot off of the top of the elevator once,” Johnson laughed.

His motivation for joining the department came from a desire to support the town he lives in.

“It’s hard to find people who will give of themselves. We don’t get paid for what we do,” Johnson said.

Johnson and the other volunteer firefighters spend around 300 hours each year training for and responding to emergencies.

“When people call 911, they’re having the worst day of their lives and we’re expected to go deal with it,” Johnson said.

Besides grass and structure fires, the department also handles wrecks, natural disasters and hazard material spills.

“If I had to name one thing that we’d never have to do again, it’d be car accidents. Those are just the worst,” said WFD Captain Jeremy Ashby.

Johnson agreed dealing with wrecks has been the toughest aspect of the job, taking an emotional toll.

Several of the hundreds of crashes he has seen stick in Johnson’s memories, including one where he saw a woman drive past him in a suburban. Seconds later, he heard the distinctive sound of metal hitting metal as the suburban rammed headfirst into a semi. Miraculously, the driver survived.

Another car crash victim was unable to be saved after striking a tree and being partly ejected from the vehicle. Johnson and a fellow responder performed CPR on the young woman for two hours before being told there was no hope for her survival.

“That was a big one for me. When (the doctor) said we had to let her go, well, he was the doctor,” Johnson said.

Adding passing lanes and wider shoulders to Highway 50 has drastically reduced the number of deaths from car wrecks around Walton.

“We still run from one to three fatality accidents a year; we used to run from 12 to 15 a year,” Johnson said.

Each call is different and can affect the firefighters in different ways.

“EMT and medical training teaches you how to deal with a patient; they don’t teach you how to deal with death,” Johnson said.

“I don’t think anybody can be trained how to walk into it; the key is to provide a service for people to walk out of it,” Ashby said.

That is why both Ashby and Johnson are part of Harvey County’s Critical Incident Stress Management team.

Johnson said if it wasn’t for the CISM team, he would have been overwhelmed by the suicidal thoughts that started about five years into his firefighting career. Now, he prioritizes debriefings with the younger volunteers in his department after traumatic calls.

“I look at it as keeping my employees,” Johnson said.

Walton Fire Department also assists neighboring fire departments with large-scale incidents. Of those, the wildfires that burned near Burrton in 2016 was the most challenging, Johnson said.

Ashby, who was with Johnson at the time, recalled seeing trucks and horses going over the roads while they were on fire. The smoke was so thick at times, the men could not see each other while sitting in the same vehicle.

“The first three or four hours, I don’t know how we didn’t have anybody killed. It was a war zone,” Johnson said.

Johnson was placed in a command position to battle the winds blowing over 40 mph and burning grasses and trees throwing up flames topping 20 feet high.

The incident command system used was the same one Johnson helped to implement in Harvey County in 1991.

“It’s a structured way of managing incidences; turning chaos into a manageable situation,” Johnson said.

Johnson’s days spent fighting the wildfires — and years of additional experience — is something Ashby said is invaluable to the fire department. While no longer serving as chief, Johnson plans to spend at least the next year in his new role as a liaison officer for the Walton Fire Department.

“In a paid department, once that chief retires he doesn’t come back to help guys like myself who are working their way through the officer ranks,” Ashby said. ”…It’s just a confidence builder for me to know that I’m learning, but Merlyn’s there as instantaneous backup.”

“I’ve never been one to do it all. That’s not being lazy; it’s not being selfish, either. It’s sharing the load,” Johnson said. “How do you get involvement and ownership in the department? You give your captains and firefighters jobs to do, they do them and they feel good about it.”

Having co-chiefs for the fire department allows the volunteers to split up the responsibilities of operations and administration.

“That’s really rewarding, to watch people grow and know that the fire department doesn’t just revolve around one or two individuals,” Ashby said.

“We have a good department with a bunch of good people,” Johnson said.

Walton Fire Department provides and receives mutual aid from other fire departments, both in Harvey County and neighboring counties.

“We have an unbelievably lucky situation working in Harvey County, because our departments work well with them,” Johnson said.

Ashby said it is easy to call for additional resources — and sometimes aid is volunteered before it is requested.

“We’ve had fires where people have gone out of their way to call in and say, ‘hey, we’re available,’” Ashby said.

Recently, a system has been put in place to page several fire departments at the same time for structure fires in or around Walton.

“If we have a structure fire in town, automatically Hesston, Newton and Whitewater are coming to our fire,” Johnson said.

If the fire chief determines other departments are not needed for a fire, they will radio in to release them, but critical minutes are saved in case additional units are necessary.

That practice also gives support to the department because many of the volunteers do not work in Walton and may be unable to arrive quickly.

“When (a fire) happens, it happens. We don’t know,” Johnson said.

Recruiting new volunteers to the fire department is another challenge Johnson has taken on for several decades.

“Merlyn has single-handedly brought on 90 percent of the people we have right now,” Ashby said.

Around 20 years ago, the response to 9/11 brought an influx of young men to the fire department.

“Now, the average age is probably 30. We’re not seeing that younger generation. Our new members are probably 30-plus,” Ashby said.

Johnson said he is careful about asking people to volunteer; looking for people who own homes in Walton and are at a good time in their life to take on the role.

“It’s a major commitment. We don’t want someone for six months and then they’re gone,” Johnson said.

Walton Fire Department promotions

Bill Kemph has been with the Walton Fire Department for 19 years and has served every role on the fire department at some point in time. He has been the Assistant Chief for over a decade. Recently, he took on the role of Co-Chief alongside former Chief Johnson.
Chris Utter brings over 17 years of service to Harvey County residents. He has been promoted to Co-Chief to serve alongside Chief Kemph.
Will Kemph, with 12 years of firefighting experience, was promoted to Captain of the Red Crew. Kemph also serves as a full-time firefighter for Sedgwick County Fire District 1.
Tyson Old has served the Walton Fire Department for five years and was promoted to Captain of the Green Crew.
Kyle Kientz, with 13 years of experience at the Walton Fire Department, has been promoted to the role of Safety Officer.
Jeremy Ashby has been with the Walton Fire Department for nine years and was promoted to Captain of the Blue Crew.
Merlyn Johnson has taken on the role as Liaison Officer. Johnson has experience working many incidents throughout Harvey County since 1986. Johnson has served as the Walton Fire Chief for 14 years.

 

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The Jon Clair Memorial Golf Tournament 2019

The Jon Clair Memorial Golf Tournament 2019

 

 

Job Opening – Fire Medic – Overland Park Fire Department

The City of Overland Park Fire Dept is accepting applications for the position of full time Fire Medic.

Responsibilities: This is a highly skilled fire fighting, emergency medical services and fire prevention position. Extinguishes and prevents fires to protect life and property; performs basic and advanced life support care to the sick and injured, maintains fire station equipment, apparatus, quarters, and operating equipment; provides public education; and prevention duties. Work is performed in accordance with general supervision and written procedures, under the command of a superior officer.

Requirements: High school diploma or GED. Associates Degree in Fire Science and/or Emergency Medicine is preferred. Must possess a Kansas Paramedic certification. Must be certified in Advanced Cardiac Life Support, Pre-Hospital Trauma Life Support, and Pediatric Advanced Life Support. Must possess a valid driver’s license and maintain an insurable driving record. Medical certification required for use of Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus. Must have a current paramedic and AED certification by the Kansas Board of EMS or National Registry. If National Registry certified, employee must obtain Kansas Board of EMS certification within first year of employment. Employees hired prior to July 1, 2011 must be Firefighter 1 and Firefighter 2 qualified and have satisfactory progress with the ongoing competencies and requirements of the equivalent of National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1001 Professional Firefighter Qualifications, NFPA 472 Hazardous Materials Competencies for the First Responder at the Operational Level, and NFPA 1002 Fire Apparatus Driver/Operator Professional Qualifications and Certifications. Employees promoted to Fire Medic or hired after July 1, 2011 must have Firefighter 1 and Firefighter 2 Certification in the State of Kansas or equivalent International Fire Service Accreditation Congress (IFSAC) or Pro Board Certification. Valid CPAT required. No City residency requirement.

Attaching a resume does not complete the application.  You must fully complete the application to be considered for employment.  All fields including the required licenses and certificates must be completed or you will be automatically disqualified.  An email address is necessary to apply online and receive an electronic confirmation that you successfully submitted the application.

Must successfully pass a background check, drug screen, physical, and psychological evaluation.

Qualified applicants will be scheduled for a FireTeam Video Test March 21, 2019 at 9:00 a.m. at the Fire Training Center. Learn more at www.ergometrics.org.  Copies of all required certifications will be collected at this time and are mandatory before allowing entrance into the exam. A photo ID will be required before allowing entrance into the exam.

Normal Work Hours:  24-hour shift; schedule to be determined by supervisor.

Salary:  $3,686/mo.

Application Deadline: 3/15/2019

Benefits:  Full-time

EO/M/F/D/V

Job Opening – Firefighter/EMT – Great Bend Fire Department

The City of Great Bend is accepting applications for the position of Firefighter-EMT, or Paramedic.
Primary responsibilities will include fire protection and EMS response/transport. This position requires a thorough knowledge of the operation and maintenance of equipment and principles of Fire Science, EMS and department operations.
Applicant must possess a high school diploma or GED and be at least 18 years of age. Applicant must possess a valid Kansas driver’s license and EMT certification prior to hire. We will accept the C.P.A.T. or applicant will be required to take the in-house physical agility and Fire Team testing.

Randy Keasling, Director of Human Resources
The City of Great Bend
PO Box 1168
1209 Williams
Great Bend, KS 67530
Fax: 620-793-4108
Phone: 620-793-4111

Johnson County Fire District #1 hosts bell christening, badge pinning ceremony

Photo by Johnson County Fire District #1

Surrounded by over 150 family members, friends and local leaders, the members of Fire District #1 recently held their bell ceremony and badge pinning ceremony.
The fire service of today is ever changing but is steeped in a tradition that is over 200 years old. One such tradition is the sounding of the fire bell.
These traditions are used as symbols, which reflect honor and responds to those who have given so much and who have served so well. An old tradition with the bell is to sound the alarm for a fire call. The bell would sound again when the task was completed, and the unit had returned to the station. The bell is also used when a firefighter has made the ultimate sacrifice. This time-honored tradition continues today during funerals and memorial services for firefighters.
A christening ceremony for the department’s first Firefighter’s Bell was led by Rob Kirk, fire chief. Kirk, assisted by Dennis Meyers, assistant fire chief, and Rick George, chaplain, rang in the bell.
Ray Casey, who served as fire chief in the 70’s – 80’s was in attendance along with his wife Peggy. Casey was honored by placing his hands on the bell and remembering his fondest memories. He was joined by his children, Kathi Flynn of Gardner, Carl Casey of Lenexa, Mike Casey, duty chief of Overland Park Fire Department, Scott Casey, assistant chief, of Fire District #1. They were also surrounded by family and friends.

The bell ceremony concluded with the reading of the Fireman’s Prayer by George.
The bell will be used for memorial services for fallen firefighters and other formal occasions.
The event then moved to the promotional and badge pinning ceremony. The badge pinning ceremony emphasises the dedication and professionalism of each firefighter, and their commitment to serving the residents of Fire District #1.
Kirk spoke directly to the honored members speaking about the history and honor of the badge. The ceremony included the pinning of their new rank position badge by a selected member of their family.
“The badge pinning ceremony is a time-honored tradition signifying the introduction and transition of new departmental members to their positions. It is an opportunity to recognize their efforts in front of colleagues, department officials, family and friends,” Kirk said.
Promotions included Scott Casey to assistant fire chief, Trig Morley to battalion chief community preparedness and emergency operations, Aaron Winkler, captain, to battalion chief training division, Rob Hudspeth, captain, to battalion chief, Adam Robinson, lieutenant, to captain, Bill Templeton, lieutenant, to captain, and Dain Weese, master firefighter, to lieutenant.
Probationary firefighters who met all the requirements of their probation were presented their helmet shields. The firefighters receiving this honor include Nathan Heinen, Justin Donnell and Wyatt Richerson.
Three new members were officially welcomed into full time service: Travis Evans, Sterling Lehman and Brandon Sattler.
Fire District #1 has 44 staff members and 15 volunteers who serve the communities of Gardner, Edgerton and New Century along with the Gardner & McCamish Township. The department responded to over 3,000 calls for service a year in 2018.

 

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Job Opening – Fire Chief – Derby Fire Department

Fire Chief Recruitment Flyer_FINAL

 

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