Two Less Names, But Still Just as Dead

You may have missed this small fact in the 2010 LODD information.

Note: I have removed the statements regarding the NFFF because some readers have begun confusing the relationship between the NFFF, the USFA and line of duty death numbers. My muddy point about the NFFF widget was my personal opinion regarding counting line of duty deaths and should not be thought of as a shot against the NFFF and their mission.

- Bill

You may think it disrespectful to mention this fact now, just after our national memorial service, but I specifically waited to see if other sites, forums and blogs would pick up on it. "It" is below…

Did you catch it?

"An additional two firefighters were killed in a POV while they were returning from a fire certification class at a local community college. These firefighters were apparently involved in street racing with firefighters in another vehicle."

Last year I commented on how the sad event of two volunteer firefighters from North Carolina were killed while returing from training. What made it more sad was that the two were involved in drag racing. Sadder still, we learned that another volunteer firefighter was charged for the incident, drag racing with the victims.

Shortly after the March 2010 incident the USFA had officially declared the deaths of Jeremy Bolick and Tommy Wright as "official line of duty deaths." As late as January of this year, they were listed in the USFA's 2010 Firefighter Fatality Provisional Statistics.

It is fitting and respectful toward the other line of duty deaths recognized that Bolick and Wright were not as their actions were illegal and as with other line of duty deaths I have noted, outside the normality of "line of duty."

Still, it is sad when a firefighter dies, and saddness relived when honor and recognition are taken away.

As I have said before, if we could change the way we define "line of duty" , "on duty" and how we count our fatalites, maybe we'll be closer to truly changeable figures.

But I doubt it.

We encourage and support constructive dialogue and debate. View our comment policy.

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Backstep Firefighter

“To provide a point of critical thought about certain acts and events in the fire service while incorporating behavioral education and commentary in a referenced format.”
Comments
Burton Clark
Rhetorical Lesson No.12: Would Fewer Basics Work in Reducing Our LODDs?
All we need is one lesson with two parts. Follow all the S.O.Ps 100% correct, 100% of the time. Reason, anything less can get you and others killed. It also makes you a professional and defines a good firefighter.
2014-08-29 13:43:35
John Pignataro
Women and Children First by Dave LeBlanc
Bravo sir ...This battle began in the early 1990's having been a career DC Fireman for 30 yrs and a still active volunteer fireman for 37 the mentality has changed since 1977. Your article is clear and to the point but I am afraid the fire service maybe lost to the folks who preach the…
2014-08-23 01:12:28
Ben Waller
Women and Children First by Dave LeBlanc
Actually, the "Women and children first" idea cane from the sinking if the HMS Birkenhead. Now known as "The Birkenhead Drill", this stemmed from the ship beginning to sink, an inadequate number of lifeboats, and the Royal Marines and soldiers on board being called to formation and standing in ranks while the ships crew put…
2014-08-21 11:25:14
Ron Ayotte
Women and Children First by Dave LeBlanc
Bing-freaking-o!
2014-08-21 02:49:30
Brian Gary
Women and Children First by Dave LeBlanc
Very well written. I couldn't agree more with your statements. The problems are many, but they perpetuate and increase with every new class of recruits that are poisoned with the idea that anyone who feels unsafe has a responsibility to act and stop whatever is going on. When I came on, my instructors told me…
2014-08-21 02:04:23
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