Epping Fire Department
Welcome and Safety Tips
Hello Everyone! Spring is finally here and everything is turning green. Now is a good time for spring cleaning, Not only for yards but for accumulated stuff in the house and garage. I too have clutter I need to sort out and haul to the dump. What are the dump hours again? Anyways. Since we’ve sprung ahead, hopefully everyone changed the batteries in their smoke and Carbon monoxide detectors. There are detectors that last 10 years without replacing the batteries. Smoke detectors should be replaced every ten years as well. Practice evacuating the residence and have 2 ways out of house. Set up a meeting place such as a mailbox or tree. It’s always cheap insurance to buy a couple fire extinguishers for the house and garage. They can be picked up at any department store and come in different sizes.
I recommend an ABC dry chemical since it covers most types of fires. A simple mnemonic called “PASS” is how to properly use an extinguisher. Pull the pin, Aim the nozzle at the base of the fire, Squeeze the handle and Sweep. Always have your back to a door to escape if you can’t put out the fire and ALWAYS call the Fire Department even if you’ve put out the fire. It’s a state law that fires have to be reported and you never know if the fire has traveled. You can call the Fire Department to set up a time or class on how to use an extinguisher. We also do CPR classes. You can call the station if you would like a home inspection to see if you have enough detectors and other safety tips.
The Fire Department had been busy so far this year and a couple calls were difficult in nature due to hoarding conditions. Hoarding is a mental illness and doesn’t only create a problem for home owners, but for also for the first responders. It can trap occupants in the building and increases a fire load which in return increases the intensity of the heat and fire. A woman in Eliot, Maine died last year when she couldn’t get out of her home due to floor to ceiling clutter. It also risks firefighters trying to get into the house to save people. A medical aid the other night was difficult, not only to enter the residence but also to get the patient out due to clutter.
Summer time is the best time for Bar-B-Q. Grills should be set on a level ground and not next to a residence. There is a State Law that you CAN NOT grill on a deck or porch on a multi-family complex such as a condo or apartment building. Proper use of a grill is important to avoid injury and fires. Use an updated propane tank with a safety value for the grill. Always shut the gas off when you’re done with the grill and wait until it cools off before putting it back into the shed or garage. Always keep children and pets away from the grill.
Fire Department Operations
The size of a town or city and its population decides what is required for apparatus in its Fire Department. Epping has a variety of combinations of vehicles. The three engines that protect the town are set up for different purposes. Both engines 1 and 2 are set up as attack or Initial Response trucks. Both are also set up for auto extrication and basic rescue and both also carry basic medical kits. Engine 3 is a Pumper with 3000 gallons of water, so it’s also used as a tanker truck. All can be called on for mutual aid to assist other towns. Engine 1 goes if it’s an auto accident since it has the latest extrication set, unless they call for a tanker, when Engine 3 responds. Mutual aid is critical since there is a rule that is called two in, two out. For initial response, if you have two people inside, you need two people outside to potentially rescue them. It takes approximately 26 people to fight a ranch style house. We only have three people on during the day, that’s why we use Mutual aid. Only the big cities have the proper staffing for small fires. So Mutual aid is like an “I scratch your back, you scratch mine” type of deal to save the towns some money and increase safety as well as man power for all.
A firefighter in Berwick, Maine died in a house fire last month. It is a sad reminder about how dangerous our job is and how quickly things can turn on a fire scene. Captain Joel Barnes and another firefighter were trapped inside and Captain Barnes shielded the other firefighter, sacrificing himself to save his colleague. Many other firefighters were also transported that day due to the situation. When a firefighter becomes trapped, a MAYDAY is sent out and a Rapid Intervention Team is deployed. Nothing is ever as rapid as it seems and it may take many other “RIT” teams to save a downed firefighter. It is protocol to strike additional alarms such a 3rd, 4th or 5th alarm to get the manpower needed for the rescue and firefighting efforts.
Epping Firefighters have been trained in self-rescue as well as RIT operations in case we have to go in to rescue our own. The Fire Department uses what are called “Run Cards” which list area towns with alarms from a 1st to a 5th alarm. Durham and Exeter are on our run cards and are specialized RIT teams for us and other local Departments that must be at all working fires.
Thanks for reading my post. I will speak about safety tips and operations, etc. next time.
Burn permits are now required for all outside burning. You can swing by the station or get one on line at www.nhdfl.org. No permits are issued for Class 3 Fire Danger days or higher. There might be a fee for the online permit.
Lieutenant Paul St Cyr
Fire Prevention Officer and 9-11 Liaison.
Burn Permits are required for all outside burning. Permits will be issued at the fire station seven days a week, 6:00 am-6:00 pm. Permits Will Not be issued when fire danger is class 3 or above. If you have any questions contact the Fire Department at 679-5446. For Daily Fire Danger and an explanation of the different danger levels, please follow the link http://www.nhdfl.org/fire-control-and-law-enforcement/daily-fire-danger.aspx.
Friends of the Epping Fire and Brick Museum
We have taken a break during the colder weeks of winter but now back to work. One fundraiser we have is our T-shirt sale. T-shirts will cost $18.00 for sizes small to xlarge, sizes XX or XXX will be $20.00. Cash or check.
If you would like to buy a shirt or want more information, please contact Cliff Cray at firstname.lastname@example.org or 396 9436..
Submitted by Cliff Cray