Promises Made, Promises Kept

CarolinaFireJournal - By Sherry Brooks
By Sherry Brooks
01/23/2014 -

This is the time of year when we all make promises to ourselves and we’re lucky if we keep half of them. You know the usual things — losing weight, saving money, personal development, etc. But there are also some serious promises you should make to keep yourself and your departments safe and healthy for 2014. We promise that in this issue of the Carolina Fire Rescue EMS Journal, you’ll find page after page of training and self-improvement articles that can help. You’ll also find a number of new products and services that are designed to keep you from harm’s way.


We are all creatures of habit. Change can cause us to cringe and run in the opposite direction as fast and as far as we can. Normally, however, we’re glad that we made the effort. This is especially the case when these changes keep our co-workers, our communities and us safer. Here’s wishing 2014 will be a year of positive change for you and your department.

C. JoyBell C., a writer, poet and philosopher says it best. “We can’t be afraid of change. You may feel very secure in the pond that you are in, but if you never venture out of it, you will never know that there is such a thing as an ocean, a sea. Holding onto something that is good for you now, may be the very reason why you don’t have something better.”

In his article on page nine, David Greene gives you many ideas on changes to make in your department. He compares today’s fire service to a football team, where preparation, practice and “playing” will allow everyone to go home. He concludes with the comparison that everyone should continue to develop, improve and review his or her “playbook.”

Doug Cline asks, “Are You Adjusting Your Fire Suppression Tactics Based on Modern Research?” Doug suggests changes based on recent research by the International Society of Fire Service Instructors and the National Institute of Standards and Technology. He outlines nine steps taken from this information. This is must reading and begins on page 12.

We have a constant need for new volunteer firefighters, but many are scratching their heads, wondering the best way to recruit. On page 28, Leza Raffell brings you some great ideas for recruitment, as well as the tools necessary to grow and strengthen your volunteer family.

One tool that helps with volunteer recruitment is to involve young men and women as junior firefighters. For example, the 4th Annual Warren County Junior Firefighter Competition will be held in April. This fun and educational competition tests teen firefighters on two knowledge based events and six field events. For more information read the article on page 31.

In future articles of Carolina Fire Rescue EMS Journal, we will continue to grow our section on family and personal growth with continued Home Front articles by Debra Cline and Gail Ostrishko, and new writers like Peggy Sweeney. In this issue, Ms. Sweeney has this to say about firefighters, “Training them to deal with trauma, stress, and grief is no less important than training them to be safe on the fire ground.” Her article, “Suicide: A view from the nozzle end of the problem,” is found on page 56.

On Being a Fireman

What is a firefighter?
He’s the guy next door....
He’s a guy like you and me with warts and worries and unfulfilled dreams.
Yet he stands taller than most of us.
He’s a fireman....
A fireman is at once the most fortunate and the least fortunate of men.
He’s a man who saves lives because he has seen too much death.
He’s a gentle man because he has seen the awesome power of violence out of control.
He’s responsive to a child’s laughter because his arms have held too many small bodies that will never laugh again....
He doesn’t preach the brotherhood of man.
He lives it.

~ Author Unknown

As always, let me know topics you would like covered or training you would like discussed in future issues. If you would like to submit an article, let me hear from you. I promise I will respond. You can reach me at [email protected].
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About the Carolina Fire Rescue EMS Journal

Welcome to the Carolina Fire Rescue EMS Journal! We want to provide you with timely online information and breaking news that best equips you to meet today’s emergency challenges. Among our firefighting articles, you will find the latest in firefighter technology, firefighter training, leadership development and the newest products and services presented in an “Act Now” user friendly format.  We want to be your best online source for the fire and rescue information, resources and reviews you need.
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