11/13/06 61 W - + 19 - 15 This Morning's Fire

There was a CAD curiosity with this morning's fire on Fonville Road off Falls of Neuse Road, just about opposite the Falls fire station. Though the regular Raleigh assignment was dispatched, FFD was not. They self-dispatched and subsequently spotted the fully-involved fire (residence being renovated) from their fire station. Alarm time around 6:30 a.m. Engine 25 first-due. Defensive attack.

That is odd that Falls wasn’t dispatched. I know they still have contract on that area especially since it was built before Raleigh took over. Anything built after annexation is not under contract.
pal - 11/13/06 - 19:26

I believe FFD’s contract only covers Wakefield. Just another reason the county should go closest into the city. Rediculous is not even the word, when describing a working fire directly across the street from a Fire Station and they are not dispatched.
firetruck - 11/13/06 - 22:24

Callers address is the only house on that road in City. That is why CAD sent Raleigh. Why Falls is not contracted there is being researched. Fully involved, not sure what difference if Falls was initially dispatched, but if it was say a room in contents maybe so..
Rauer (Email) - 11/13/06 - 23:02

Same thing with Eastern Wake Fire Department, their station #2 is located in the center of the Town of Knightdale, which would be dispatched to KPS for their response.
Guest - 11/13/06 - 23:10

I don’t think the citizen cares if the truck has Raleigh, Falls, or Wherever on it as long as it puts the fire out. I’m sure many of us agree.
car3550 - 11/14/06 - 19:46

I think that it is unreal that instead of helping the public that there has to be these stupid boundries. It would be really nice to just all work together like it should be and help and do our best for the public. I taked to someone that went to this fire and i listened to it at work, it took raleigh atleast 5-6 minutes to get there and im sure it would have taken falls 1-2 min if that. That makes a huge difference and from what i have heard atleast half of that house could be still standing if not more if Falls was dispatched. I also heard about 1-2 months ago that they were supposed to be implimenting closest unit dispatch no matter if you are city or county. I hope that this will help to spark those efforts and make this closest unit dispatch come into effect soon.
Dhfde3 (Email) - 11/14/06 - 20:21

Hmmm….well I can say that the county does come into the city. Take for example “Southern Cross Ave.” off Jones Franklin Rd. into account. It is in the city limits of Raleigh, but about a year ago we answered a “house fire” call there. Swift Creek was dispatched along with city units, as they should because they are around the corner, and arrived simultaneously with E-20.

Lets face it, the CAD does have flaws and there should be a committee formed to work on getting the kinks out. It should be made up of city and county f.d. members, along with Chris Perry or his designee. It’s effect is being felt by our number 1 critic, the citizens. I just don’t think anything REALLY bad has happened, yet.

My opinion; I don’t care what your truck says on the side of it. If you are adequately staffed and trained, you can bring me a line, act as RIT, or act as my back up anyday.
Silver - 11/14/06 - 21:29

Its not just Fonneville. We have a road about 50-75 feet beside our station that we dont get dispatched to. Whether or not something bad has happened yet or not, thats ridiculous. Why would something bad or worse than what has already happened, have to occur in order for the people we protect to get the BEST service we as a fire service can provide? God forbid we get a code along that stretch of Fonneville or Lowery Farm. Raleigh would get dispatched, and yes it wouldnt take too much longer for them to get there than ti would us, but we all know the time frame we have to work with when it comes to something like that. And those minutes could save a life or end one. There should be no place for imaginary lines in our line of work. Something horrible happening to one of us or to a citizen shouldnt be the only catalyst for change we go by. The lessons been learned, we just need to do something about it.
FFD212 (Email) - 11/14/06 - 22:22

I’ve heard reports that reporter was on scene asking these same questions, and was quite angry at the whole circumstance, maybe media pressure will further our cause?
guest - 11/14/06 - 23:30

CAD is not always right. It’s a very complicated system and we try to make it work the best we can. I encourage everyone to let someone know if an incorrect recommendation comes out. The people putting stuff in the system have to think it’s working okay unless someone says otherwise. For County units, if we know that another unit can (and does) get to an area QUICKER than the one that’s getting recommended, we’ll change it if it’s possible. (That being said, I’m sure someone will produce a situation that we can’t fix, but we’ll still try.) The “stock” recommendations are primarily based on drive time computations, which don’t take turns, traffic congestion, stops, etc. into account. Most certainly, some real-life adjustments have to be made to get the true quickest unit. A new set of station run orders are being developed now for EMS units and are being started for county fire units. This will take new roads, new station locations, etc. into account. This is the time to fix any quickest station problems. Hard to believe we’ve been on this system for over two years.

In regards to county units going into the City, yes, it is coming (and probably fairly soon). It’s in the final stages. If a county station is closer to an address (in the city) than a city station, an engine from the County station will be dispatched in addition to the full Raleigh assignment. This should mirror what the city does in the county.
Chris Perry - 11/15/06 - 09:18

Oh, and I couldn’t post without hitting this also….same applies to units. If you’re having to swap units on a regular basis, let us know. We’ll work to get the right vehicle recommended so you don’t have to swap units so much. We probably can’t make it right every time, but we’d like it to be right most of the time. That makes it easier on everybody.
Chris (again) - 11/15/06 - 09:22

Chris I have a quick question for you. County units going into the city, will that just take into account first in units or will it be the same for the full assignment? Example Ral E-2 is first in to Wilmington/Tryon area and can beat everyone in, but Garner E-3 is closer than the next in Raleigh unit (Ral E-1, or 20 or 10) so would E-3 be added in the place of say Ral E-1 or as the RIT eng? The same thing in Wakefield. Ral E-25 can smoke people in there, but Wake Forest 431 is closer to parts of that neighborhood than Falls and E-22. So would they run as the 2nd due eng?
guest - 11/15/06 - 12:28

What is being set up now only applies if a county station is quicker than any other city station (yes, first in units only). Therefore, county engines would not be second due. Same applies with RFD into the county today, they only respond if they’re the quickest station. That being said, there is work on a plan on when county departments would run deeper into the city as city units become depleted, but it’s a little further down the road.
Chris - 11/15/06 - 15:16

I think that the news that Chris Perry has provided sounds great, atleast this will start soon and it will only get better down the road.
Dhfde3 (Email) - 11/15/06 - 19:39

Chris, what is the best way for us to get in touch with you regarding CAD issues?
guest - 11/15/06 - 22:49

Contact information for Deputy Fire Marshal Chris Perry, along with other members of the Wake County Public Safety Fire/Rescue Division is available here: http://www.wakegov.com/emergency/fire/de..
Legeros - 11/15/06 - 22:54

And a second good page of county fire contact information is here: http://www.wakegov.com/emergency/fire/fd..
Legeros - 11/15/06 - 22:56

Wouldn’t GPS dispatching fix the closest unit thing?
ff - 11/16/06 - 15:35

AVL is from what I understand in the future, but it still doesn’t take into account total travel dime v. distance

EMS will be using the AVL before FD ever dreams of getting it… it’s baby steps but we’re moving closer each day
CFP 7021 - 11/16/06 - 15:53

Charlotte Fire has AVL on all of their vehicles as does Mecklenburg EMS. Last weekend I was riding into Presbyterian Hospital in the back of a MEDIC unit and I could see that upfront, they have computers tracking the vehicle, showing next turns and stuff. I have also spent time in Charlotte Fire Communications and that is a pretty sweet thing too. There is a map of the city with all CFD units. You can find their status, wheather their emergency lights are on or not, their speed, and who knows what else. CFD’s CAD picks the closest units from Engines to Battalion Chiefs. So when they are out to dinner, one Engine may respond into another stations “district” because they are out of house.
CFP743 - 11/16/06 - 16:22

That sounds like a great system. I hope that technology gets passed around quickly.
ff - 11/16/06 - 16:52

Yeah, their AVL system works really well. It is down from time to time, but Charlotte could definintly use some help from Wake county regarding status buttons. Wake county’s status button system seems to work almost all the time flawlessly. And the alpha pagers are very reliable. Charlotte uses something called MST for status and call information and I wouldn’t be suprised if it was down at least once a day. Again, the AVL thing doesn’t account for actual drive time. I think Wake countys CAD updates itself with regards to response time. For instance, if it sees that E2 is beating E1 to a certain address, it will change the dispatch order automatically. Does anyone know if this is true.
CFP743 - 11/16/06 - 19:36

Speaking of Charlotte Fire, they experienced a problem dealing with the “speed limit” factor. Whereas some units were in the station (road that has a 25 mph speed limit, call them Engine A) and another unit (Engine B) was dispatched because it was on a road that had a 45 mph speed limit. There was no doubt that Engine A was closer. There solution was simple, program every street with the same speed limit, solved the problem.
Silver - 11/16/06 - 19:39

Interesting tidbit of information I learned this morning regarding Fonville rd. fire; When Raleigh was dispatched, apparently someone at Falls heard the dispatch, went out front of the station and saw the fire, called E-25 on the radio and confirmed that it was a working fire. However, even though they “self-dispatched” and were right across the street, it still took them over 5 minutes to arrive on scene after E-25 arrived on scene. One would think that Falls would have been 1st-in since they actually confirmed the fire or at least brought E-25 a line but E-22 did that since E-22 also beat Falls in to a fire right across the street. Maybe this is why some citizens are critical of volunteer depts.?
pal - 11/17/06 - 12:56

Not sure who you are pal, but the citizen who called it in actually was knocking on the door of the fire station after he had called it in. Maybe if Falls was dispatched on the initial alarm it would have been a different story. By the time they had been notified by the citizen, Raleigh units already had a couple of minutes on the road. Check your facts next time.
Rauer - 11/17/06 - 13:16

I got my facts from the Raleigh units on the scene. Someone from Falls confirmed the fire over the radio while E-25 was enroute. Yes, they were enroute but the fire was still across the street from Falls. I’m not bashing Falls at all. I’m just trying to make a point that maybe this is why a Raleigh citizen wouldn’t want the services of a volunteer dept. like a citizen had posted on here a few months back. I’m all for closest unit response and it’s a shame Falls didn’t get dispatched. Maybe they would have gotten there sooner.
pal - 11/17/06 - 13:29

Volunteer or Career, we are ALL professionals. Every department operates a little differently based on their district requirements and resources. I’m sure they “citizen” you speak of would not care if the truck had volunteer or career staffing during their emergency.
ff - 11/17/06 - 13:56

If no other volunteers were present, no engine would likely have be dispatched until the minimum staffing of members was present. And it may have taken a couple minutes for those other members to arrive at the fire station.
[Lee] - 11/17/06 - 14:13

Well if they took soooo long, why did Falls lay Engine 25 a line?
Rauer - 11/17/06 - 14:29

The comments being exchanged here help explain at least one reason why the barriers we continue to try and break down daily between career and volunteer departments continue to be rebuilt. Let’s remember as was posted earlier, we are ALL professionals, so let’s try to give a professional image and remember we’re always in the public eye.
WC Volunteer - 11/17/06 - 15:21

Absolutely. Rauers right. We did lay 25s line. By the time I was woken up to the report of a fire across the street I was told that Raleigh units were en route and I SAW that the structure was fully involved. How much a difference could have been made is arguable. But its just as rididculous a scenario as if Falls were dispatched to a structure fire behind station 25 without Raleigh units being dispatched. Ridiculous? The career volunteer issue. I cant STAND anyone to talk down about a volunteer. Those volunteers that showed up on the scene after our initial truck arrived are to be PRAISED. They got up out of THEIR beds and left THEIR families, used THEIR gas to get to the firehouse, and put in THIER time and effort to help SOMEONE ELSE. City units left the scene after the fire was out. VOLUNTEERS stayed and finished it up WITHOUT getting to fight any fire or do any of the “good” stuff. FOR FREE. They didnt do it because they had to and they didnt complain. Just like most volunteers do EVERYDAY in EVERY city in America. Profficiency of course being the issue, most of our volunteers are City firefighters anyways. Do I mind city firemen. NOT AT ALL. Ive wanted to be a city firefighter since I was eight and consider an honor and priveledge to work beside “Real” firemen. But food for thought. JASMINE COVE: City units called for Falls BY NAME. Why? because they KNOW we’re CLOSER, they KNOW we’re COMING, amd they KNOW we can HANG. If they didnt they wouldnt have called us. Period. The stigma of the volunteer fire service is one from the citizen towards us, and when we cant even respond to a fire across the street because of political BS, that STIGMA GETS REINFORCED, regardless of how wrong it is. If we had been initially dispatched, water would have been on the fire sooner-PERIOD. How much more would have been saved? once again- ARGUABLE. Is it wrong that CRAP like this happens everyday? YES. Are we all here to do the same job regardless of our reason for doing it? ABSOLUTELY. I like working with city units and feel that the feeling is mutual. We get the job done TOGETHER when the situation calls for it. So I dont believe the issue is a paid/volunteer one, its a closest unit one. I dont care what it says on the side of your truck, someone called 911 for help. We need to get it to the in the most timely manner possible. As a Chief once told me “ this isnt the banking business we’re in” TIME = LIVES not money. Closest unit in, all the time, city or county. Its not about us.
FFD (Email) - 11/17/06 - 16:43

Update on the areas near by FFD where Falls does not get dispatched. Several Citizens have said they were confused and disturbed knowing that the Fire station ACROSS the street would not come if they had an emergency. Some neighbors have said they are calling the fire station instead of 911 so they will get a quicker response. A local emergency door alarm has been installed also this week for situations like the other morning: a distraught citizen pounding his heart out on the door. And PAL listen up friend… I checked the CAD terminal and Engine 25 arrived at 0627 and Engine 212 arrived at 0628 (and they were not dispatched) Mr.Perry’s words are great. It’s about time we put the community first.
Falls201 - 11/17/06 - 19:30

Happened again… 2 calls @ Falls of Neuse Road and Dunn Road ( about a 1/2 mile from the station) Falls not dispatched. 22 Dispatched. Apartment Fire call off Garden Hill. 22 dispatched. 3 calls, Falls closer, Not dispatched. Cant wait for those CAD changes to happen.
FFD212 (Email) - 11/19/06 - 11:47

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