Maxwell Fire Department Craziness

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by bugs4cy, Feb 4, 2013.

  1. bugs4cy

    bugs4cy Well-Known Member

    Jun 7, 2009
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    I view this as the perfect recipe for killing a small town, volunteer Fire Department -

    Des Moines Register - Conflict Over Firefighter Physicals Raises Questions About Requirement Safety

    Yah, it looks like there is some old school Hatfield-McCoy retribution in there, but what the heck! What small town department can afford to toss seven people off the crew? You don't have to be in Olympic athlete physical shape to play an important role in the department. Anyone have the Paul Harvey Rest Of The Story on this?

    Im on the city council of a small town in Story County and I have nightmares about the day we run short of volunteers.
     
  2. jaretac

    jaretac Well-Known Member

    Nov 26, 2006
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    pretty standard practice for all fire departments to require physicals. It has to do with insurance. Normally all that is required is to get a note from a doc saying that the person is in good enough condition to participate.
     
  3. 3TrueFans

    3TrueFans Well-Known Member

    Sep 10, 2009
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    So are they refusing to get physicals or they just forgot somehow?
     
  4. TykeClone

    TykeClone Burgermeister!

    Oct 18, 2006
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    In reading the article, the physical form was changed to target one of the guys and the others are relatives.
     
  5. VTXCyRyD

    VTXCyRyD Well-Known Member

    Sep 2, 2010
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    From what it looked like in the comment section, the guys went to their own Drs for the physicals, not the one required by the chief. They also did not turn in the "proper" form.

    It really reads like a railroading from Maxwell's chief.
     
  6. TXCyclones

    TXCyclones Well-Known Member

    Sep 13, 2011
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    This is typical of all small town VFD's, otherwise known as drinking clubs. I used to be on the VFD to a neighboring town to Maxwell and was a first responder as well. But the priorities shifted to being more about water-fights on weekends than about citizen safety IMHO. These little VFD's are cliques wrapped around who you'd rather drink-with or party-with than anything else. I'm shocked that there hasn't been a lawsuit thus far, but would bet that there's enough butt-hurt with this one that there will be.
     
  7. Senolcyc

    Senolcyc Well-Known Member

    Apr 20, 2010
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    Most popular social club there is for small town menfolk. You'll never run short of volunteers as long as the fire station refrigerator is full of free beers.
     
  8. bufante

    bufante Active Member

    Nov 27, 2006
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    Makes sense to have physicals. Can't save others when your own fire department has to save you...
     
  9. crash_zone

    crash_zone Well-Known Member

    Apr 10, 2006
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    Tiffin, IA
    I was on a small department for 3 years....not much drinking went on (from what I understand, it used to be that way, the the current chief put a stop to that when he took over). There were several guys that couldn't put on bunker gear and run into a structure, but they were great support outside - directing, shuttling water, helping where they could. Getting rid of the older volunteers is a mistake, IMO. If you want to make them take a physical and then limit what they are allowed to do based on that (something they are probably already aware of their ablilities and don't try to do something they can't), that's fine. Straight-up kicking them off? Good luck filling those spots. Not sure I'd want to join a small department that just got smaller because of something like this. A 3AM page to a fire with only a few other people........good luck.
     
  10. mtowncyclone13

    mtowncyclone13 Well-Known Member

    Oct 10, 2012
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    VFDs need to be uniformly regulated by the state. A huge problem going forward is that many full-time fire fighters in larger cities (who live in smaller nearby cities) are prohibited by their employers insurance to volunteer for smaller cities. This means the professional and truly knowledgeable people can not help their small towns. The idea that the VFD needs to meet physical standards is absolutely true in terms of applying for and receiving grant money. I am aprt of a group that grants out about 100k per year and if the applicant can't show professional competentcy there is no way they are getting any money.
     
  11. CapnCy

    CapnCy Well-Known Member

    Jul 6, 2010
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    That photo with the story is just calling for a reality show to pick up this family and follow them for a year and have a show.
     
  12. NickTheGreat

    NickTheGreat Well-Known Member

    Jan 17, 2012
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    Growing up, if your house was on fire it was useless to call the VFD. Just go down the bar and find the guys there. :twitcy:

    Seriously, my parents always instructed us to call a neighboring town if our house caught on fire.
     
  13. LindenCy

    LindenCy Keep and Pride - It works
    Staff Member

    Mar 19, 2006
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    Chicago, IL
    LOL, and wow, scary.
     
  14. Clark

    Clark Well-Known Member

    Jun 24, 2009
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    It's a good joke but aren't most fire departments dispatched by county, not town?
     
  15. VTXCyRyD

    VTXCyRyD Well-Known Member

    Sep 2, 2010
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    VFDs - There is no basement they can't save.


    That's the joke I always heard.
     
  16. CYlent Bob

    CYlent Bob Well-Known Member

    Aug 7, 2006
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    engineer/surveyor/rancher
    The Winterset Metroplex
    From the comments section of the DSMR article, it appears that the firefighters all got physicals. They just didn't use the "right" doctor and fill in the "correct" form while they were doing it.

    My guess? The City Council will ask the Chief "WTF are you doing?" Even if she's right here, she's still the Chief during a period where the strength of her force went down by damn near 50% (17 to 10). Right or wrong, she's not much of a leader based on this controversy.
     
  17. BKLYNCyclone

    BKLYNCyclone Well-Known Member

    Sep 16, 2007
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    Twin Cities, MN
    Before 911 was in my hometown, there were direct numbers to the police and firestation... I remember it to this day, ###-3434.
     
  18. NickTheGreat

    NickTheGreat Well-Known Member

    Jan 17, 2012
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    Yep. We didn't get 911 until I was in Jr High maybe?
     
  19. kingcy

    kingcy Well-Known Member

    Sep 16, 2006
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    The current way we have VFDs is crazy. Yes it is nice to have one in every town, but it costs a lot of money to have firetrucks sitting around for 4 fires a year. We have a great group of guy on our dept, the problem is none of them work in town, so a fire during the day and you are screwed. Neighboring dept does a good job if picking up the slack and helping out. At some point they need to go to area depts, but that is a hard sell.
     
  20. VTXCyRyD

    VTXCyRyD Well-Known Member

    Sep 2, 2010
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    I think that is how it works now. Most VFDs cover rural areas as well, not just the town.
     

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