West Manatee Fire Rescue

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Welcome to West Manatee Fire Rescue

Brunner Promoted to 1st Class

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Brunner Promoted to 1stClass

Chad Brunner was promoted to the rank of First Class Firefighter at the Board of Commissioners meeting, Thursday night.  Firefighter Brunner started as a reserve firefighter with the District in 2009 and was hired in 2011 as a full-time firefighter.


Fire Chief Replacement Named

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Anna Maria Islander

by Rick Catlin, Islander Reporter


West Manatee Fire Rescue District commissioners were faced with the unenviable task of choosing a replacement for retiring longtime WMFR Chief Andy Price.

Commissioners had to select between Deputy Chief Brett Pollock and Capt. Tom Sousa.

In the final vote taken at the district commission’s Sept. 25 meeting, the fact that Pollock has already decided to retire shortly after Price worked against him.

Commissioner Ron Cooper said both applicants were “well qualified for the position.”

But it “doesn’t make sense to select someone who we will have to replace eight months after he’s hired,” he said.

Price is scheduled to retire in May 2015. Pollock is set to retire in early 2016.

Pollock said he understood the decision. He said he knew when he applied that his decision to enter the DROP would work against him, and he had no hard feelings about Sousa’s selection.

The vote to name Sousa as Price’s replacement was unanimous.

Although Commission Chair Scott Ricci said he was concerned neither candidate had enough budget experience, Cooper said Sousa will have ample time to work with Price on financial matters.

Commissioner David Bishop said Sousa will “get all the training he needs. It’s just unfortunate that we had to choose between two well-qualified people.”

Sousa expressed gratitude, saying he understood it was not an easy decision.

“I want to thank everyone involved in the process,” he said.

He also acknowledged the difficulty the board had in choosing between himself and the deputy chief.

Sousa will be formally offered the position by Ricci. After acceptance, he’ll begin training to start the job when Price retires in May.


New Fire Engine Hits the Road

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New Fire Engine Hits the Road

West Manatee Fire & Rescue District has placed their new fire engine in service.  The 2014 Pierce Impel can transport 5 firefighters, carries 750 gallons of water, and can pump 1,500 gallons per minute. The new engine comes with a state-of-the-art compressed air foam system (CAFS) which injects compressed air and foam into the fire hoses, allowing the use of less water and reduces water damage.

 The engine was purchased from the local Pierce distributor, Ten-8 Fire Equipment Company, at a cost of $497,000.  The engine will be located at Station 4, 407 67thStreet West.   


Station 4 Rescues Ducklings

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Read more...Station 4 Rescues Ducklings

When Susan Miller of Mango Park arrived at the West Manatee Fire Rescue Administration building early Wednesday morning to ask for assistance with the rescue of ducklings trapped in a storm drain, firefighters jumped into action.  The firefighters from Station 4 arrived in the 2000 block of 91st Street NW to a mother duck walking frantically around a storm drain.  Firefighters could hear the ducklings chirping in the drain.  Manhole covers on both sides of the road were removed and Lt. Jeff Lonzo located the two ducklings in a pipe between the road and a retention pond.

It was determined that the discharge pipe at the pond was severely clogged for the ducklings to escape on their own. Firefighters began removing debris from the discharge pipe, hoping to make a large enough opening for the ducklings to escape.

With all the work at the discharge pipe, the ducklings moved back to the area of the storm drain.  Firefighters flowed water on one side of the street with a garden hose, while Captain Ryan Moore used a crab net to try and catch the ducklings.  The first duckling was able to avoid the crab net and was quickly moved passed a temporary barriers placed in front of the pipes.  Meanwhile, Lt. Lonzo was able to catch one of the ducklings by hand in the manhole.  That duckling was released to the mother duck who was at the retention pond.  A few minutes later, the second duckling popped out of the discharge pipe and swam to its mother.

Miller was appreciative of the quick response and described the crew as “kind, gentle and compassionate with the little ducks”.

Read more... 


CFO and State Fire Marshal Jeff Atwater Reminds Floridians to Celebrate Safely this Fourth of July

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Read more...CFO and State Fire Marshal Jeff Atwater Reminds Floridians to Celebrate Safely this Fourth of July

TALLAHASSEE—Florida Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jeff Atwater is urging Floridians to celebrate safely during upcoming Fourth of July celebrations.
“Independence Day weekend is a time to celebrate our country’s freedom and the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, but we must be smart and remember that fires and serious injuries can be caused by the improper use of fireworks,” said CFO Atwater. “Ensure your friends and family stay safe this Fourth of July by safely and correctly using fireworks.”
In Florida, 120 fireworks-related incidents were responded to by fire departments across the state during the 2013-14 fiscal year. Ensure that you have a safe holiday by checking the Division of State Fire Marshal list of more than 2,000 sparklers that are approved for use in Florida. Anyone purchasing fireworks should also keep these safety tips in mind:
• Never give sparklers to young children, because sparklers can reach temperatures between 1,300 and 1,800 degrees, at least 200 degrees hotter than a standard butane lighter. 
• Keep pets indoors and away from all sparklers.
• Light only one item at a time and never attempt to re-light.
• Keep a fire extinguisher and water hose on-hand for emergencies and a bucket of water available for used sparklers.
• Only purchase sparklers from licensed vendors.
• Attend a public fireworks show. Many public displays sponsored by communities or organizations are presented all across Florida.
Floridians should not sign “waivers” in order to purchase fireworks. Signing a waiver will not clear a consumer of responsibility if caught illegally using fireworks.
For a complete list of Florida-approved sparklers your family can enjoy, please visit: http://www.myfloridacfo.com/Division/SFM/BFP/Documents/ApprovedSparklerList.pdf
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