Ron, Thank you for bringing this incident up. Many folks don't realize that this incident was a construction site with blasting and explosives materials, in a building that had caught on fire. Lack of placarding and pre-hazmat inventory info for fire departments resulted in an explosion that took six firefighters lives.
Kansas City Firefighters responded to a car fire adjacent to a storage building that contained ammonium nitrate and other explosives. Without notice, the storage building blew up, vaporizing the engine and firefighters. Injured were a battalion chief and responding second in engine.
Thanks for reminding us about this one.....We often forget, and we CAN'T. Need to teach/mentor the NKOTB (New Kids on the Block) about this, and so many other of the incidents where our brothers and sisters have paid the ultimate price. Thanks again brother.
I was a Houston Fire Fighter and Local 341's representative to go to funerals across the country. After the explosion, it reminded many of the Texas City Explosion in 1946 (?) which involved ammonium nitrate as well. Prior to the memorial Service at Arrowhead Stadium, several of us were allowed to visit the site from a distance since it was an active crime scene. From atop a hill and looking down at the several acres of barren land, I asked what thedifferent color flags were for located throughout the entire area. I was told that is where some body parts were found. I can still remember that lump in my throat. Though new laws have been made in identifying and the markings of hazardous materials, you can never leave your guard down and know that some people, including terroists, can only dream of repeating this tragedy again somewhere else. May They Rest in Peace!!
This is a prime example of paying attention to details, take the time to know what is going on in our districts. These brave individuals gave their lives, lets honor them the right way. Not just by mourning them once a year on this sad anniversary, but by heeding the example they, and all of our fallen brothers and sisters have set. Learn from them! Lets not make the same mistakes! Rest easy brothers, we will continue the fight!
Are there any classes such as these a part of degree'd programs? Not that I am aware of........
Why not? I can see history classes such as this much more relevant to the subject at hand rather than some classes that I have seen made a part of degree'd curriculums.
When I was in school for my associates, we did have a class where history was covered. This wasn't an actual class, dedicated to the fire history, but how major incidents thus reflected a change in operations, tactics, prevention and so forth. There was also an individual research paper each student had to do on a significant incident and present it to the class.
I agree about learning from history, but in the end, the focus is on the impact such incidents have had on the fire service, rather than the incident itself. While knowing the circumstances of the incident are important, what perhaps is more important is what we can learn because of the incident. In this case, after the incident, did we not see a focus placed on size up, on hazard identification, etc? Is this not what we do with so many other LODD incidents?
No, I would say such lessons are more important in the firehouse, while doing training, rather than a degree program. The focus of a degree program, especially an associates, is to give you the information and training to meet your goal. Not everyone in such a program goes on to be in the fire service. Secondly, one can also get on a dept without ever being in such a degree program. Whereas, such incidents like this, are best to be pulled up and discussed around the table and can be more valid in the context of doing the job, rather than obtaining a degree.
I remember this incident like it happened yesterday.
The crater in the ground. The engine vaporized. Man; it threw the fear of God in us to know that you could roll up on an incident and be blown into small particles.
I agree that fire history should be part of any firefighter certification program. Any multiple fatality incident should be required reading.
Many of us with any whiskers have seen some of the worst and pass it along. Much of it can be found in NIOSH and simple googles can get additional info.
It's important that we never forget.
In a disturbingly similar incident, one year ago (12/09), a firefighter was killed, 6 other FF's and 2 *juniors* injured when a dumpster at a foundry exploded. Lack of awareness of local businesses, processes and dangers led to the death and injuries. Apparently not everyone is getting it. Hate to think those 6 KC brothers died in vain and their lesson lost.