Monday, August 31

Happy Birthday Happy Medic

One year ago, exactly, I published my first post.

Looking back, I was just hoping to blow off some steam and vent my frustrations with the way EMS and Fire were being used by the folks I encountered. I didn't want to get caught up in the day to day news, there are far better sites for that. I also didn't want to get caught up in training, techniques and instruction, there are far better sites for that.

But I found very few that addressed the situations that make us shake our heads and think, "You called 911...for this?"

The 365 days and almost 400 posts that followed have been an absolute blast. The format has changed repeatedly, as has the picture up there, but one thing remains. I still aim to put a smile on your face giving you a first person account of my encounters with the public at large.

Thank you for stopping by and having a look around, see you next year.

your Happy Medic

You Make the Call...Triathlon...What Happened

This person was not the most popular in the house to begin with and when the "injury" occurred, we all rolled our eyes and did things by the book.

Going off on disability means you are unable to fill a role within the organization, even if that means sitting at a desk filing papers and making copies for 8 hours a day.

When we saw his picture in the paper it was like a slap in the face. Guys got vacation canceled because this guy went off and here he is running a triathlon?

I mentioned the person looked familiar and threw the paper back on the table. One look from the officer and she was like a flash of light to the phone. She called him and asked him to explain how he was on disability for a bad knee while running a triathlon, to which he told the officer it was none of her business.

Wrong move.

If I recall correctly he ended up quitting over this situation, instead of asking someone for trades, or arranging vacation to train for the sporting event.

I have absolutely no hard feelings, guilt or anything like that about the situation. He faked the injury, he ran the race, he got his picture taken. Had I pushed him down the stairs, then I'd feel bad.

If you said call him on it, you made my call.

Sunday, August 30

...for the conspiracy...

In honor of the upcoming one year Anniversary of the Happy Medic Blog I thought I'd throw in a call in the old format that asked "You called 911...for this?"

You Called 911...for the conspiracy?

My fascination with the things people will call 911 for will never end. But on this call I had to scratch my head and ask, "Really? You were forced to smoke crack against your will?"


A first party caller reports he is unconscious


How he got across to the call taker his unconsciousness does not change the dispatch code 25A5 looking back at me, a psych issue. Great.

He rings us into the little unit groaning and moaning with each step, but doing all right. It is our first run of the day and our hopes are still high for a good shift. The gentleman who called explains to us that he is unable to make it to the methadone clinic today on account of his stomach pains and he would like a doctor to give him some. After my standard talk about how we don't do that kind of thing, he decides to switch gears and appeal to my inner conspiracy theorist.

Did you hear Mrs Happy Medic just roll her eyes? She doesn't even read this blog and yet she somehow knows when I'm talking about conspiracies. It's a consp...
...I digress.

I won't bore you with my theories here, only to tell you each one can not be proven false any more than I can prove it true. That is the hallmark of a good conspiracy theory. So I perk up and wonder what this man could have that I haven't heard before.

"I'm forced to smoke crack and take methadone so I'll never get a job." He tells me while rummaging for a half smoked cigarette on the couch.
"Who supplies you with these substances?" I ask still looking around the room.
"My brother buys for me." He finds the cigarette and tries to light it.
"Not so fast there, Speed Racer, no smoking allowed." I take the lighter and put it down for him. For whatever reason people freak when you take the cigarette, but taking the lighter is OK.
"I NEED my methadone or I'll die!" He's getting irate.
"Tell me more about the conspiracy," I distract him by handing him some pants for the drive we will likely be taking any time now.

"I saw it on TV. See, some [INSERT RACE] guys decided to kill all the [INSERT DIFFERENT RACE] people like me, but not right away, see, that would be obvious, so they gave us all crack and heroin and weed and they're just waiting to take over."
"And then they make you do the drugs against your will? Really? You were forced to smoke crack against your will?" He's pointing at me and nodding as if I was a fourth grader explaining a math problem to an adoring teacher.
"Exactly!" He celebrates, arms in the air and a smile on his face.

"Wow. Well, good news is, you look good enough to take the bus to your methadone clinic and an ambulance may not be best for you today." I said slowly turning.
"I have chest pains."


"OK, let's go, Saint Closest is 3 minutes away."
"I want to go to Saint Cleanest (Just past Saint Farthest)." He tells me, again with the point and the smile.
"No dice, you said chest pain, which gets you the closest facility. Or you can just go to the clinic. Up to you." He's looking at me, possibly even considering doing the right thing, but you all know how this run ends.

Clearing Saint Closest we see him out at the bus stop, giving us the "I'm watching you" fingers to the eyes, then at us. My driver nearly spit out his coffee. It's a conspiracy.

Sunday Fun - Take me out...

I'm not a baseball fan, but when I hear Station 13 has a bet with the Station 13 of the other team in the game, it really makes it interesting. What is the bet you ask? T-shirts. Loser sends the winner one shirt for each guy signed up. On today's schedule:

1:05 PM

4:05 PM

Finding this info is challenging, I need your help gentle readers. If you know what house is first due at a local pro stadium, send me an email with a pic or a link to a pic and let's start a database. Football, Baseball, Hockey...just list the city, stadium, company and sport. Then I'll post it up and more folks can get into the T-shirt collecting business.

Play Ball!

Friday, August 28

You Make the Call...Triathlon

2 weeks ago one of your co-workers fell down the stairs in the dorm. He's usually a fit guy, training and weight lifting, but somehow turning the corner at the landing took his knee out. You did the assessment, finding little if any sign of injury, but he was transported and placed off duty.

This morning's paper has extensive coverage of yesterday's big triathlon meet and guess who is on the front page, in full color, number attached to his shirt crossing the finish line? No one else at the table seems to notice your injured co-worker running.

Do you say something? If so, who and how? You Make the Call.

Thursday, August 27

the Handover - Edition 7

The Handover Blog Carnival is home this month, where MedicBlog999 asked for submissions describing your first emergency.

I have the honor of being included in the list of blogs I enjoy reading, which is pretty neat in my book.

So go have a look into what the authors of your favorite blogs submitted as their first ever emergency.

Next month CKEMTP over at Life Under the Lights will be hosting the Handover with the theme "Funniset.Call.Ever." Now I have 400 posts to go through. Thanks.

10 new first responders without the Fire Department

Last week I covered what the Fire Department will be doing to pass the time between fires if not responding to EMS runs.

This week, instead of covering what EMS services will be doing, I thought I'd invite some people from the neighborhood to fill in the first response role. Without fire resources rolling, maybe these folks can arrive first and make a report or early intervention.

#10 Letter Carriers
They know every address as well as any medications a person may have delivered on a regular basis. The post office has an army of these folks on the streets and all they're doing is moving things from place to place.

Pre-deployed we can arm them with AEDs and basic airway kits, and dispatch them by zip code, which is nice.

And you know they're in shape to help you carry patients down the stairs or assist in extrication.

#9 Police Motor Officers
Our friends Two Wheel Terror and Motorcop may not be too jazzed about this reassignment, but they know they can get places your Chevy can't.
They can handle basic interventions and I know there is room on their tool belts for an IV bag and some angiocaths. And they can cite folks while waiting for the ambulance to arrive.

#8 Pizza Delivery Drivers
Synchronized cardioversion in 30 minutes, or it's free!

#7 the Ice Cream Man
One of our two pediatric specialists already in the community, they have a PA system for use in MCIs as well as refrigeration units for the upcoming therapeutic hypothermia treatments we'll be starting.

Treat...ments...No? Sorry.

#6 the Cable Guy
These dudes seem to be on every corner these days, fixing something, and since they say they can arrive anytime between 8AM and 6 PM, we can use them to augment the commute hours.

They understand electronics, so let's give them the 12-lead monitors and have them upgraded to transmit broadband wireless to any physician we need to, including the ER. And if we tip them $50, they'll add an anteriolateral STEMI printout to get us bumped up on arrival.

#5 Tow Truck Drivers
They're already responding, bump them up to code 3. Replace the yellow lightbar with a red and get them out there. Load up some spreaders and a few hydrolic jacks and we don't even need fire to respond at all.

An added bonus, they already know where all the hot spots are and will surely stick around until the scene is cleaned up properly and the cars taken away. There is no down side here.

#4 Meter Maids
Every time you turn around these folks can sneak up and write a full cite and disappear before you can dig for another quarter. They will respond as documentarians to gather and record all medications, family names, vehicle types, weather conditions and the like, download it to your ePCR and then *poof* they'll be gone and onto another call.

#3 Garbage Collectors
Want to know about someone? Go through their trash. Few people can play the detective game we must do in mere seconds when arriving at the scene of a medical emergency. Not dispatched for trauma so much, the refuse patrol will respond to all critical medical calls and evaluate the surroundings to give you insight into the patient's life, likes, dislikes and recent credit troubles. Then they can clean up all the medication and equipment trash we leave behind.

#2 School Bus Drivers
Pediatric specialists. The bus already has red lights and will respond bringing a child of like size for dosaging reference. That darn Braslow tape is so old and kids are fatter these days, it helps to be able to choose from a variety of children, weigh them and have an accurate dosing scale.

Not to mention they come in handy for MCIs.

#1 the Missionaries
No other group is seen in every community in the country more than our white shirted, bike riding, religious missionary friends. They have bikes, so they're mobile. They have a firm resolve in their work, so you know you can trust them and their packpacks could carry an AED and a med kit no problem.

Not to mention, they have a higher power on their side, which could make the difference on some runs.

So there you go. If you don't like the fire service resources currently deployed and responding on calls with you, take your choice from the above.

Wednesday, August 26

Happy is an uncle!

Attention all companies and units in the field:

Just received via twitter:

@motorcop1 Baby MC has arrived! The Wife rocked it! Med free and all natural! She is my hero! I am now surrounded by estrogen with two beauty girls.

My self proclaimed brother from another mother reports via twitter that both Mrs MC and Baby MC are healthy and well.

Watch for updates at Motorcop's home base.

That is all.

Tuesday, August 25

2 Year old Tip of the Helmet to Orlando

There is so much talking by politicians about how fire stations can be closed without effecting response time without anyone actually showing examples of how a well staffed, well deployed service can handle adversity in a time of need.

This tip of the helmet goes to the Orlando Fire Communications Staff, Orlando Engines 11,6,1 Tower 1,8 Rescue 1, Heavy Rescue 1 and other units at the scene of this large apartment fire recently seen by our friend Beemer and sent along to HMHQ. It is from September of 2007 but could be happening in your town tonight.

The next time a politician in your area thinks that brownouts aren't such a big deal, remind them that if any one of the first units to this scene had been closed that day, the woman and 4 children trapped inside would be dead. Send them this video, now.

This video is well put together and includes 911 tapes from the woman and the children trapped in a bathroom behind heavy fire.

A job well done.

Monday, August 24

You Make the Call...Pump Lever...What Happened

This situation certainly falls under the WTF header in the fire service, butting keeping your wits about you will allow you to adjust your plan smoothly.

As an experienced engine operator you can anticipate problems like this and have a short list of quick options to go to. When your first line is not chargeable because of a valve failure, that valve, regardless of what you think the reason may be, should be deemed out of service.

I pulled the second line to the first coupling and did a quick make and break. Before they had time to wonder what was taking so long, I charged the second preconnect.

To ensure no one following in the response grabbed the bad line, I threw the last 50 feet back over the hose bed and out of the way.

Anytime a line is deployed you should have in mind anything that could go wrong, be it hose, water, or pump.

If you said attach to a new outlet and get water flowing ASAP, you made the right call.

Don't forget to come back every Friday for a different You Make the Call, with follow ups on Monday.

Sunday, August 23

Sunday Fun - Ladders

I was reading a book to one of the little ones the other night and had to answer some pretty tough operational questions from a 3 year old. The book was Richard Scarry's Busiest Firefighters Ever! and the cover is just hilarious. Aside from the engine operator wearing a cooking pot for a helmet (with Company number) and the Officer wearing a colander and playing trombone, one of the firefighters is clinging to a pompier ladder as they drive along.

My little one commented that he was not sitting safely and that the ladder looked funny. She will one day make a great Truck boss.

But it got me thinking about the wide variety of ladders both in our past and in our present.

Looking through the IFSTA manuals we see all manner of ladder raises and techniques. The 3 man 35'. The 4 man 35'. The 1 man 24' etc etc. So what are we running with?

Most engines are wandering town with the standard 10' attic, 12-14 foot straight and the go to 24'.

Ladder and Truck Companies, however, seem to produce odd ladders at odd times.

The pompier ladder was a center beam rung ladder with a 2-3 foot barbed arm on the end. This ladder allowed a firefighter to scale the exterior of the building without placing a ground ladder. In the days of having an escape route, it is impractical for sure. If you have one of these it needs to be adorning your wall, not your ladder tray.

In my opinion your fire escape ladder and your 6' A frame ladder are your most important ladders for quick deployment. The fire escape ladder for obvious reasons and the 6' A frame to get in quick and plug those pesky fire sprinklers.

San Francisco, California still operates wooden ground ladders on account of the numerous above ground electrical supplies still common in most neighborhoods. Each of their Trucks carry a 50' wooden extension ladder weighing in at 350 lbs and requiring 6 people to raise. Then they brace that with a 24' straight ladder. It looks VERY heavy.

At the 100th anniversary of the Great Earthquake and Fire, they brought out the last of the 65' wooden ladders, only used for demonstration.
From the SFFD Historical Society:
"The 65 foot ladder was the principal means of rescue before the advent of the aerial ladder and was also used in locations were the aerial ladder trucks could not operate. The ladder can, when fully extended, reach a five story roof or a sixth floor window."

The Mumbai Fire Brigade, when dealing with a stressful situation and heavy fire with hundreds trapped, tried a new way to raise a ladder with poles, pull them. Check out they guy in the bottom center of the photo. Apparently it worked and they made many a rescue.

And on a lighter note, who can tell me what is wrong with this ladder placement?

Saturday, August 22

A Tale of 2 Poles

Here in Happy's Department we, like many others, have stations of varying age. Some of the brand new houses are spacious, well lit and don't smell funny. Others are cramped, crowded and have a faint odor no one can find the source of.

Recently I was working one of our outlying engine companies that still uses part of the house built in the 1940s. When remodeled, the Department absorbed the neighboring parking lot and built another single bay garage right next door, attaching the two. This allowed for a larger kitchen in the new addition and added office space on the ground floor of the old one, where the kitchen used to be. The ceiling height difference made for an awkward middle floor for the officer's quarters.

This is where the tale of 2 poles title comes in. This house has it's old pole from the dorm to the apparatus floor in the old part of the building, and a newer, interesting concept, in the new house.

The old pole never moved in the remodel, never got a clam shell, it is still bolted to the wall in front of the building. It goes from top to bottom, these are old school 18 foot ceilings.

Pretty straight forward, right? And no, our station isn't fuzzy, that's just the entry level camera built into my rockin' phone. My work camera was liberated from the car in front of my house a few months back.

Over in the new wing of the house, is this fire pole:
This pole has a top, and a bottom, as so many do, but look again. You're standing on the mezzanine level, the restrooms are above you and the new apparatus floor below. That door to the left goes into the officer's bunk. Incase of alarm, a sleepy officer could encounter a firefighter sliding from above.

And yes, you can get from the top to the middle, but it is awkward to climb off halfway down.

The reason I bring this up is the recent conversation, apparently, about slides versus poles.

Slides? Really?

A simple pole in a corner seems to work just fine.

Firegeezer started it OVER HERE, then take a look over HERE at Fire Critic for details, but take the stairs, it's not an emergency.

Friday, August 21

20 years of drunkenness

I'm not referring to myself in the title, but to two women I met hours apart who may actually be the same person in some strange time twisting episode of the Twilight Zone. At any moment Rod Serling could have popped out and I would have accepted his version of events as truth.


A caller reports a woman unconscious on the street corner.


This call comes in hours after Part ONE, but we'll be going in age order, not chronological order. The engine is waved down in a nice part of town just after closing time at the bars and we see a well dressed young lady in the usual too drunk for consciousness pose. A quick assessment rules out the usual alcohol look alikes of stroke, hypoglycemia and trauma, so we get more back story.

Our callers, a middle aged couple out walking a restless new puppy, saw the woman staggering and having trouble walking from a half block away. As they followed her, mildly concerned, they saw a car pull up next to her and a young man try to help her. "How nice," they thought until they noticed her try to walk away ever so clumbsy-like. As they approached, calling out to the young man that they could help, he let her down and made a run for it, speeding off before they had their wits to get the license plate.

The ambulance has no choice but to take her sobbing vodka laden body to the local non-ER resource for observation.
The young woman will awake in the local sobering center amongst some of the most odorous persons in existence and hopefully understand how lucky she was and to control her drinking. Otherwise, she might end up like our patient in Part ONE.


The front desk of a hotel is describing a woman who has fallen and hit her head.


This call came in a good 6-7 hours before our friend above.
One of our dynamically deployed ambulances was switching posts and happened to be nearby, beating us to the scene. As I approach the front door, the EMT comes running past me offering only a quick "Hey."

Ahead of us in the lobby, I see a pair of legs flailing from around a corner and a string of expletives that would get this blog an X rating for sure. I'm a fan of using quotations in my reports when folks get verbally abusive, not only to better recall the event, but to paint the picture accurately should the case go to court. I would have hesitated to use half this language.

The flailing legs belong to a woman in her late 40s who took a swing at a stranger exiting an elevator, fell and struck her head on the marble floor, leaving a puddle of blood and quite a large bloody mess in the general area. I found this out as I rounded the corner to see the Paramedic partner of the EMT wrestling with the woman who was throwing blood covered fists and arms in all directions.

As we jumped onto the legs to help our friend, the EMT returned with restraints, a board and a collar. It is truly laughable that we are required to C-spine these types of people. All the while we were restraining her limbs she would make eye contact with one of us and say something so remarkably vile that even the cast of the Jackass movies would ask her to tone it down a bit.

Finally bandaged, tied and boarded we carry her to the awaiting cot while the husband and a few friends try to tell us she is normally a perfectly nice person, but she has been drinking too much. I firmly believe that enough alcohol will let the real you out of your skin and we met the real her.

The excitement has left the little lobby and only the bloody mess remains. Then Rod Serling steps out, lit cigarette in hand.
"Picture a woman who has no control over her emotions and allows excessive intoxication to control her life. Had she only recognized the destructive forces of alcohol 20 years earlier, regardless of how legal it might be, she may not have fallen and been hurt. Then none of the emergency workers would have heard language that should be reserved...for the Twilight Zone."

You Make the Call...Pump Lever

You are driving the engine today and have been rung out for a reported apartment fire. Blocks away you have heavy black smoke showing and as you pull up the third floor is fully involved. Your crew is gearing up and the officer is radioing in as you switch from road to pump, hearing that tell-tale change in the motor as the PTO kicks into pump. A hydrant is right out front and you parked right at the tires, so your pony supply line will reach perfectly.

The officer calls for the 200 foot pre-connect and he and the firefighter advance the line into the front door, leading it into the lobby and up the interior stairwell.

You secure the door open and return to connect to your hydrant when you hear the officer over the radio call for the line to be charged, they have encountered heavy fire on the stairwell from floor 2 to floor 3. As you pull the valve lever towards you and out of the panel, there is a sudden give and the lever comes out. The cotter pin is missing and your crew is calling for water.

What to do? You Make the Call.

Thursday, August 20

God's Gift to Firefighting

This is a letter to my associate the other day, God's gift to firefighting.

It's me. The one sitting next to you in the back of the fire engine. We are part of a team, you and I, and we need to work together to get our job done. We each have our own responsibilities today and I take this job seriously. There are just a few things I wanted to point out that I learned in your glowing presence yesterday.

1. You must be one hell of a fireman, just look at your turnouts. Your pants are thick with grime and soot, completely dry and obscuring the reflective security features. Your coat is just as dirty, I noticed you wiping it earlier with those cow skin gloves from the warehouse store. I mentioned how easy it is to clean and care for your gear and you looked at me as if I asked to date your daughter. I'm sorry.

2. You don't have to race for the nozzle, great one, for it was your duty that day. My duty was to ensure you had water and room to do your job. I was discouraged when you were unable to advance the line due to smoke conditions. I could see your mask on the regulator, near your waste through my own mask.

3. When we hiked up the 7 floors on that report of smoke in the hallways, I wasn't just feeling the doors for heat, as I'm sure you knew. Even though you raced down the hallway to the next stairwell, the officer and I were checking doors by pushing slightly against the top of the door to break the weather stripping. That is how we found the unit that had the burnt popcorn. You were upstairs.

4. Your level of professionalism is, of course, without question, but your T-shirt said FDNY. We are not in New York, unless I am very confused.

5. I was not aware that I was the problem in the fire service today. You spoke at length about the wasted seat that could have a real firefighter in it, not just "some medic." I was discouraged by this and still do not understand what you meant.

6. After our busy night of 6 runs between midnight and 6 AM, you mentioned it was my fault we were so busy and that you didn't believe EMS belonged in your fire engine. I was reading the paper getting ready for another day of work so I may not have heard you clearly.

7. Throughout the day you mentioned large fires at which you contributed, sometimes mentioning work I did as your own. Suddenly my work, and the work of others, is fair to claim as your own at the dinner table.

Come to think of it, I'm not sure you are the deity you present yourself to be. In fact, I now question whether you understand the mission of the fire service in the 21st century. I may not completely understand it either, but I think I have a better way to find the solution to our troubles than blaming the other guy in the rig. Even though it seems as if I'm doing just that.

Trouble is there is more than one "God's gift to firefighting" and just as many "God's gift to EMS" out there, but what can we do to dial down the talk and dial up the action? We'll see.

Wednesday, August 19

Don't fill the boot this year

It's that time of year again. When throngs of firefighters across the country will be standing in front of grocery stores and at street corners asking you to "Fill the boot!" This is the annual run up to the International Association of FireFighter's support of Muscular Dystrophy research and "Jerry's Kids."

Happy is not a fan.

It may have started when I was forced to stand in 101 degree heat for 5 hours in my uniform shoving a boot in people's faces at a grocery store because C-Shift had raised $500 the day before and we had to out do them.

I support research into debilitating conditions such as MD, but also support other causes. After treating my sunburns from that day and trying to get the sound of the toy machine nearby out of my head ("There's no telling what you could win!" every 30 seconds) I thought about it.

Filling the Boot for Jerry's Kids is not a good idea. Yes, you read that right.

Like with most organizations, there is overhead and administrative costs involved in organizing a nationwide campaign and telethon to raise money. This often hovers between 20 and 30 percent. That means for every 10 dollars I raise, $3 goes to pay some folks to collect my money, give it to Jerry's people, then maybe give some to those kids he brings on stage each year. Don't get me wrong, they have raised over $1.5 Billion, with a B, dollars to fight a host of muscular ailments and similar diseases since the inception of the Telethon.

That means that in that same time almost $400 Million has gone to organizers, producers, party consultants and other support staff. That money never made it to the kids.

I support keeping the money in the community it came from. Let people rally behind someone in their own community. Tell them to fill the boot for their neighbor, their mother, their friend. Fill the boot to help a family get a room while their child is treated at the hospital. Fill the boot to buy paint to redo the children's wing of the local hospital. Fill the boot to buy toys to give away at Christmas. The possibilities are endless.

I see no need to be a pawn in some corporation's fund collection machine, especially standing on a street corner near traffic or worse even, in the median, which I have seen in the past.

Stop sending your community's money away to a group far away and keep it local. We have a strong influence over people when it comes to respect and support. We may not get it when we're actually doing our job, but when we ask folks to help us, they almost always reach into their pockets and give something. Give them a face, a name, a local charity, something that will impact their lives directly to think about. When they give that $5 to help the local shopkeeper hire a helper while his back heals, they may just stop in and buy a little something extra to help out.

The local media will love it and you can get your message out to the community for free.

In these troubling economic times folks will be a little more hesitant to give, so give them a good example of neighbor helping neighbor.

If we all did that, that $400 million over the time of the telethon would have gone to help even more people in need. According to the IAFF, firefighters have raised almost $375 million in the 55 years they have supported it. We've almost covered the overhead.

But if filling the boot for Jerry's Kids is the only philanthropy your agency will agree to, then do what you can, safely.

The IAFF encourages their locals to raise money safely, find details HERE.

Tuesday, August 18

Top 10 new responsibilities of the Fire Department

Since most of the readers commenting aren't so jazzed about ALS delivered by the Fire Department, I've devised a few new ways for the folks at the fire hall to keep busy and not get closed down.

Top 10 ways the Fire Department can look busy if not responding to EMS runs-

#10 Tree Trimming
Get those ladders out and close the bike lane, Truck 121 is going to work. With the versatility and man power offered by most truck companies these days, they should be able to make quick work of most of the trouble spots as well as whatever the Town Council needs done come the fall.

They are also for hire out to private citizens, provided you can clean up the trimmings when they're done. They used to tow a chipper behind the ladder, but there was an incident. You know Firemen.

So call 911 today to schedule your tree trimming, free of charge.

#9 Bungee Jumps from the bucket.

All the cool kids are doing it.

And since we're under the same expensive insurance as the unrestrained passengers on the municipal bus system, I can't imagine the underwriters having a problem with this. After the tree trimming is through, we set up in the parking lot of the community college and make a killing. I mean a lot of money, not...well...nevermind.

It can double as a high angle rope rescue drill should something go wrong.


#8 Birthday Parties

Every kid dreams of climbing in the fire truck and squirting water on a fire, so why not give them what they want? Bring your group of at least 20 sugar hyped children ages 2-15 by the firehouse and drop them off for a day of fun!
They'll learn to operate the aerial ladder platform, make and break various hose leads and how to don and doff gear in searing heat.

Each child will receive a roll of municipal toilet paper and a sticker that says "Junior Firefighter" in a gift bag. Reserve now!

#7 Fire Engine races

#6 City Tours in the Engine
Load up the tourists and hit the streets. If your engines are going to cruise, might as well get some cash along the way. The crews can point out where all the best coffee is and where all the hidden alarm panels are.

For added realism, let them put on your coat and helmet. What a great photo op!

#5 Mobile Water Park
Hot day plus bored children plus 500 gallons equals fun! Combine that drafting drill with some good old fashioned water park fun! Kids can frolic in the droplets as your firefighters show what they can do with that $500,000 piece of equipment.

Your kids will be begging to go to the drill yard every day this summer, just don't forget your towel!

#4 Demolition
Sure we tear down fire damaged houses, but don't let us stop there. If you need concrete, wood, metal, stucco, any kind of construction torn down on site, call 911 and we'll send one of our teams right over. Not only will they respond quickly, but they will call more teams out if the job is a big one.

Saws, poles, hooks and axes will be put to use bringing your structure to the ground. Heck, it doesn't even have to be yours, you can place your order anonymously.

Just remember there is no haul away service included, we leave it all right where it falls.

#3 Code 3 Delivery Service
No longer assisting on that resuscitation down the block, our team is off to #4 Privet Drive to deliver a rather important letter to a rather important boy. That sounds like a great idea for a book.

Lights and sirens in a fire engine beats an Emo kid on a 10 speed everyday of the week.

When it absolutely, positively, has to get there delivered by 3 men in a shiny (not today, they need #2) red truck, call 911 and they'll come get your package, letter or person to be delivered and whisk them away.

#2 Mobile Car Wash and Detail
When not washing their own cars on company time, why not hire the Fire Department to wash your car?

Engines are deployed throughout the metropolitan area, carrying all the necessary tools to give your car or light truck a great wash and wax.

Call now and we'll add a burnt food air freshener with every third wash.

#1 Keep private ambulance parking spots filled

They sit at that corner all day, mainly because the coffee shop has clean bathrooms and free wi-fi, but if they receive an ALS run 25 minutes away, they need to return later to the same sweet spot.

Fire engines can be dispatched to "sit a spot" details at little charge to the ambulance agency. They will only be refused when all engines are out on fires, tours or car washes.

10% off if you mention coupon code "System Status Rules"

I'll get the flip side next week.