The postings on this site are my own and do not represent the Wayne Township Fire Department's positions, strategies or opinions.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

RIT Training Slideshow

A-Shift Rit Training 9/3/10 - 37

   This past week our department conducted RIT training at 16th and Arlington on the east side of Indy on the campus of the now closed Naval Avionics Center. Each of the three shifts were brought in for three demanding drills each involving a downed firefighter. I made a trip on my day off to take photos of A-shift as they made their way through each drill.

You can see the entire photo set here on Flickr.

   The "Denver" drill was performed in a simulated hallway with a roof-type obstacle. A team of two firefighters climb over to find a downed firefighter, unresponsive and unable to help during the rescue. The rescuers are directed to package the firefighter and position him for removal over the obstacle and then through a small opening to safety.

A-Shift Rit Training 9/3/10 - 11

   The maze drill was conducted in a building in which a maze was constructed throughout the first floor. Two firefighters maintained a right or left hand search pattern through simulated rafters, exposed floor joists, wire traps and stairs to find a downed firefighter who was then packaged and pulled back through the maze.

A-Shift Rit Training 9/3/10 - 22

   The third drill was called RIT combat. Basically simulating an actual RIT mission, RIT combat challenges the whole fire crew to find and rescue a downed firefighter upstairs in a two-story residence. This drill was a good test for a crew's ability to communicate and organize a rescue.

A-Shift Rit Training 9/3/10 - 55

   Each of these drills were physically demanding on their own. Put together, they emphasize the importance for each crew to train regularly on their own and to maintain a high level of physical fitness. Great job by Chiefs Duncan and Taylor and the rest of the instructors for organizing a valuable training for our department!

A-Shift Rit Training 9/3/10 - 40


Monday, March 29, 2010

Check out our new back apron...

     Station 84 began receiving concrete for its new back apron today. We are now looking forward to a nicer view out the back door, safer basketball games -without having to avoid all the potholes, and not having to park in the Ben Davis High School softball lot.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Engine Company 84
Scare Of The Day...

It is quite possible that being on-shift for overtime will make you even more of a target for practical jokes.

Check out this new blog by Bryan Fleck, a paramedic on Medic 82:
I'll add it to the list of links to the right.


Thursday, March 18, 2010


    St. Patrick's Day 2010 came and went and it seems that everyone had a great time. The best part of the daylong celebration was definitely the weather -sunny with a high of 63 degrees. That's about as nice as you could hope for. But, as has been proven in the past, even a cold rain could not have put a damper on festivities at the hall. Spirits were high with the company of hundreds of fellow firefighters from different departments in and around Indy, around twenty kegs of beer, boxes of wine, enormous pots of Irish stew and the Indianapolis Firefighters Emerald Society Pipes and Drums.

     If this were not enough, we spotted quite a few Engine and Ladder 84 t-shirts on the crowd. We received a lot of compliments on this year's design by many who even wanted to buy one for themselves. Great job showing our "Townie" pride!

     If you watch NBC's The Biggest Loser you probably recognized one of the show's most popular contestants walking through the hall shaking the hands of fans. Allen Smith is a career firefighter with the Columbus, In Fire Dept and and lost 116 pounds during the 8th season of The Biggest Loser. He continues to promote a healthy lifestyle for his fellow firefighters and is an inspiration to all. Great job Allen!

     An occasion like this is guarantees great photo opportunities. I have put together a slide show for those not able to attend and for the sake of those not able to remember much after the first few beers. If anyone else has pictures they would like to share, feel free to upload them to our Engine84 Facebook fan page.

     Don't forget, FDIC is just around the corner! This year's conference runs from April 19th through the 24th.
     Take care and be safe!


Monday, March 8, 2010

Racing for the Cure...

What am I doing?
I’m walking to support the Indianapolis Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure because I want to make a difference in the fight against breast cancer. Please help me reach my fundraising goal by making a tax-deductible donation today! 

-Dennis Smith
Engine 84  B-shift

Insanity in the Firehouse

     Working out on duty and off is a different beast for different firefighters. Fitness levels can vary from average human to superhuman. We got young pups and old farts. Single with nothing to do on days off and married, tending to babies as soon as they get home. Whatever the situation, staying in shape is important. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, heart attacks were the cause of almost half of all on-duty firefighter fatalities in 2009. Why? Because this job is more than just sitting in a recliner. While most people have the luxury of scheduling their workday, we cannot. At any time during the day (or night) we could go from zero to exhaustion in a matter of a few minutes without any kind of warm up. It's kinda crazy sometimes, when we're in a fire and I realize that we were all in REM sleep just ten minutes ago.

2-alarm apartment fire, Feb. 2009, across the street from the 
firehouse around 3 in the morning.
Photo by Tod Parker @ phototac.com

     Since I've been on B-shift, I've been impressed with the level of physical fitness of not just the 84's, but of the other four stations. It's a good feeling when we have to schedule time at the training tower with the Battalion for bottle-drills because the other stations want to be there too. It's gives me a sense of security to know that the crews I work with are healthy and able to perform well.

Hill repeats at the end of another bottle drill

     Sometimes though, for guys like me, the reality is that it can be difficult to stick with it. The honest truth is that working out sometimes takes a back seat to everything else like, parties, dinners, vacations... beer. That's when working out with a partner or group can really help. I'm lucky to have my wife, Shawn, as a running partner. And together we're training for the 13-mile Mini-Marathon this May. Training together at the firehouse as a crew is good, too.

Obviously gettin' ready for some insanity...

     So, today we started a new workout program called "Insanity". This is the relatively new workout program from the same people that came up with P90X. It focuses on "Max-Interval" training or long bursts of maximum intensity exercise and short periods of rest. The entire program involves scheduled workouts on DVD's. Once a day, six days a week, for two months. It also contains a nutrition guide to follow throughout those two months. Now, if you're like me, you're not really into workout programs. But I figure, what the hell. I'm thinking it will be fun and challenging and give me something to work on other than just running. And, yes, I'll be following the meal plans, too.

Today was the first of 56 days... what did Mike Lewis get us into?!?!


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Station 84 - Firefighter's Credit Union's STATION OF THE WEEK

     Yup, that's right. Station 84 is the Firefighter's Credit Union STATION OF THE WEEK (week, week, week...). Jealous much? A whole week of preferential treatment and free money! We of course donated all that to charity, but we did accept a nice box of chocolates. I'm not sure what the criteria was for choosing the station of the week, but I can only assume it involved very high standards.

     To document the occasion the credit union sent Francine Napariu (left) and Pat Wilmoth (right) while George Caughlan (center) provided the charm and hospitality. 
     You can check out the pics Pat took here after she posts them on the credit union website.