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West Valley Firefighters

Quarterly Newsletter

1st Quarter of 2012

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Chief's Monthly Report

Chief's Monthly Report

Fire Department

Monthly Progress Report

West Valley Fire Department

Yakima County Fire District 12

For the Meeting of January 8, 2019

Agenda Topic:            Department Monthly Progress Report

Prepared By:              Chief Nathan Craig

Date Prepared:           January 3, 2019

The primary purpose of this report is to keep the Board of Fire Commissioners informed as to the activities and progress on major programs or objectives.  The items listed, as near as possible, are in priority order.  As a second purpose, this report will be shared with the Officers Management Team and all fire personnel.

Personnel:

This year we brought on seven new probationary firefighters and four support members from our fall hiring process. Orientation is January 7th with the academy starting with Advanced First Aid training on January 10th

Lieutenant Cameron Haubrich and Support member Melanie Eakin have taken a leave of absence. FF Zach Feist and Tristan Masters leave’s expired 12/31 and have resigned to continue their residency in Grant County.  FF Roberto Pena and Support member Ashleigh Caldwell were dropped from the Department due to inactivity.

We are starting 2019 out with our new recognition program that both recognizes members for their years of service as well as outstanding work.

Starting 2019, we have 97 volunteers, 77 in service for combat firefighting, 10 in service for support, 7 out of service on leave, 2 on medical leave and 1 on light duty.  Our total number of members with volunteers, staff and Commissioners is 107 members.

Recruitment & Retention:  By LT Chris Lyons

In December, the new recruits scheduled and attended their medical physicals. I have been in contact with the members of each station and we have established a group that will mentor our new recruits. These current members will be attending Orientation where they will be introduced to the new recruits so that they will know who the mentors are at each station. The purpose of the program is to have designated people that will be available to answer questions or assist the new recruits in learning how we operate.

Operations: 

In December there were a total of 62 incidents (3 fires, 46 EMS, 3 service call, 2 false alarms and 8 good intents), 50 of these incidents were handled by our personnel.           

Incidents:                                         YTD                                                    

Station 51                   9                     165

Station 52                   8                     172     

Station 53                   5                    92

Station 54                   5                     56

Station 50                   23                   275

Yakima                        6                     47

Ambulance Only         6                     67

2018 Total                                        874 (760 answered by our members)

Automatic Aid Received (both agencies respond)    Automatic Aid Given                                    

From Highland            0                                  To Highland                0

From Yakima               1                                  To Yakima                   2

From Gleed                 0

YTD                 17                                            YTD                 47       

Mutual Aid Received             0                     Mutual Aid Given       2                                 YTD                 6                                  YTD                 37       

There were no reportable losses in District last month. Two auto and one mutual aid were for structure fire responses and the other mutual aid was an EMS call on the border where the initial address given was in the District, so we were dispatched and while enroute the address updated to the other side of the border.

I am working on a new format for our annual operational report, I hope to have it completed by our workshop meeting later this month.

Budget/Finance: By Officer Boisselle

We are slowly closing out 2018.  W-2’s should be reconciled and available to our members by January 28th at the latest.

I have inquired on payment for the two State Mobilization fires that we participated in this year that are outstanding.  I have resubmitted the paperwork and we should see the funds in January.  I am also working with DNR on two fire payments from this summer, I would expect the same time frame.

Department Training and Safety: By Captain Jim Johnston

December Drills included: Equipment Check / Station Drill, Hazmat Refresher, & Pride & Ownership.

Developed the January Drill Schedule: Equipment Check / Station Drill / Evaluations, State of the Department, Knots & Ropes, Equipment Scramble, & Team Building.

On December 5th the Safety and Training Committee met for the final time of the year.

Interlocal:

WADNR has approached me about the possibility of developing Station 51 as a heli-base for the 2019 fire season.  Their manager has toured the facility and believes it would be a good fit for their needs.  At this time, they are discussing the matter and intend to prepare a proposal for service, essentially every 14 days a new crew and helicopter would arrive and stay on our property, the plan at this time is to bring in a bunk house for sleeping quarters, land the helo on our west lawn and utilize the training center during the day.  We have discussed some parameters and ideas on how to make this work, at this time I will wait until I see a proposal to know the specifics of the deal. 

At this time the DNR is looking to develop a full heli-base and our 5 acres would make an ideal location. This would be a separate deal and would entail permanent structures, previously we have discussed the potential of selling this land, this might be a good fit for the land, as I know more I will keep you posted.

Fire Prevention / Public Education: By Captain Jim Johnston

December was a slow month for Prevention / Public Education opportunities.

On December 13th our Department hosted the December Yakima County Fire and Injury Prevention meeting. 

On December 28th we hosted a first aid class for a Girl Scout group of 8. They toured the station and earned their first aid and emergency badge.

CTE Program / Cadet Program:  By LT Chris Lyons

December was a short month for the high school kids as we started Christmas Break. We spent most of the month reviewing and going over some search and rescue techniques, as well as some firefighter rescue.

The Cadets have been working on their final for the first half of the year which will be to take a subject we have already gone over and give a 5 to 10-minute lesson on it. They will be graded on the quality and accuracy of the information, in addition to that they will need to have a way to evaluate how well the other students received and retained the information.

The first-year students semester final is still the FEMA IS-100b and IS-700b. 

Strategic Planning:

This month we are meeting with legislators regarding improving volunteer pensions, Station 51 expansion funding and a solution to the 1% taxing authority issue.  We also have begun a mentoring program for our recruits to aid in retention, are working with the Association to encourage more participation at events, developing a program to track the mileage of incidents as well as a full review of the types of alarms, evaluating priority dispatch and working on the RFP for architect work at Station 51.  Also, every month we are reviewing the past months activity levels of our members to ensure no one slips through the cracks due to an unknown issue.  A full report of these activities will be presented at our workshop meeting this month.

Logistics:

The Ford Edge we purchased in 2018 has had several issues and been in and out of the shop, this is all under warranty and Ford is working to resolve the issues. The vehicle will be at Valley Ford for an extended period, so they issued a rental vehicle.  Several other apparatus repairs were made in the last month; Engine 53 had a fuel leak repaired, Captain 50 a water pump replaced, Brush 52 coolant leak repaired, and Brush 51 batteries replaced.  Additionally, we have had several furnace repairs some repaired in-house and some hired out.

Our insurance agent has provided information regarding the use of personal protective equipment past its 10-year NFPA service life, this is on the agenda for discussion.

Currently we are working through our January purchasing schedule with the liquid smoke, Surface, LED driving lights and most items of our incentive program purchased.  Captain Johnston is working on replacing the audio system in the training center in time for the Awards Banquet.  Upcoming projects in the next month are to replace toilets at Station 53 and install a dryer at Station 52.

Grants:

We submitted for our 2019 State EMS Trauma grant in the amount of $1,266 this month, the grant should be awarded this spring.

Legislative:

Representative Mosbrucker’s volunteer recruitment and retention bill appears to be moving forward.  I have had contact with her office regarding the type of incentive offered, at this time they are looking at developing a grant process for recruitment and retention activities funded out of the State general fund.

I participated in the State Chiefs online legislative workshop to prepare for Legislative Day on the 24th. With the session not yet starting I do not have bill numbers to review however, I have reviewed both the Commissioners and Chiefs legislative priorities and will develop a list prior to our meetings scheduled that day.  At our workshop meeting I will have the document ready for your review.

Good of the Order:

East Olympia volunteer Captain John Ostergard suffered a medical emergency December 14th at a structure fire and died as a result. His death is a line of duty death with services scheduled January 5th.  Captain Ostergard was also the President of the Washington Firefighters Association and a strong advocate for volunteers in our State. His efforts will be missed, our condolences go out to all those affected by his passing.

Our Firefighters Association would like to host the County Fire Commissioners quarterly meeting in May, they have requested you attempt to secure the spot at the February meeting in Naches Heights.

Our annual State of the Department drill is January 9th in the training center at 7pm, you are invited to attend.

Respectfully,

 

Nathan Craig

Fire Chief