I know down by Detroit there are medic's carrying pistols for protection and even bullet proof jackets, but does anyone else know of city's that are doing the same thing or even fire departments that have some sort of protection like a bullet proof jacket. this seems to be a growing concern out there for everyone, just wanted to see your view on this issue.

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I did a reseach project on this for the EFO program. What came out was to teach our firefighters defensive tactics (scene awareness, threat recognition, and hands on skills) to be able to extracate themselves from those "routine" calls that suddenly turn violent.
We are fully equipped with .40 caliber semi automatic weapons, pepper spray, ASP Battons, handcuffs, full level 3 body armor and have attended officer survival class. We're on the range and in the FATS simulator once a month and...."oh sorry that was me on the arson task force"... a chief once told me that if you carry a gun, you are looking for trouble. I used to tell him, thats because (sitting in your office) you've never been up against a cornered arsonist who knows he's going to prison for a long time and has nothing to loose and knows that "the arson guys aint armed"...or... "you stage" and while waiting the "entire nation" rushes you (knowing you aint armed) because you're waiting instead of going in to help OR my personal favorite, you get jumped because you treat "the white man first"--who happens to be unconscious, versus the brother with the paper cut because nobody understands or want so hear about triage. i lived in the neighborhood i worked in and i allways took the time to explain the truth to them because i felt it was important that they know that ems and fire are "NON COMBATANTS". i also told them that the sheriff has made it clear that ems and fire come to help and they need to be left alone. if you harm them it's OPEN SEASON ON YOU. I was at a car fire at the club and was assaulted by onlookers. The cops "unleashed the beast" on the crowd and the guy that hit me got what he deserved. Did we ever het harassed again- not ever. Do i believe medics should be armed? no, why? it makes you a legetimate target. Stand by and let the cops take care of it, thats what they do. If you find yourself in a situation, tell the crazy that you are here to help and nothing else. Remind them that the community will take it very badily if you harm a medic or firefighter. One crazy thought he could get away with killing a medic. In jail he ran into a guy who's baby was saved by the medic he killed..."there's all sorts of justice in the world" FTMPTB

"the first step in avoiding a trap is knowing of it's existance"
Thufer Hawat
Since the Los Angeles Rodney King riots, and subsequent other riots, our department through a homeland security grant purchased one bullet proof vest for each post position on our department. It's kind of scary thinking that you too could be responded mutual aid to a large city and have someone take a shot at you like the LAFD truck engineer that was shot while driving the ladder truck...

As far as carrying a pistol... not a good idea. Everyone knows that firemen don't carry guns. We are the peace keepers and all around nice guys, right? If folks hear that we are no different than the police, then we will lose our image of being there to only help, not shoot someone.

CBz
In the state of Indiana it is illeagal to carry a gun on an ambulance
We have a ff on at our station that was at the Detroit Riots in 1967. He told us how that while they were helping Detroit FD put out the fires ( He was with Dearborn Heights ) that the cops would escort them to the scene and watch their backs, if it got too crazy they would bug out for awhile and then come back if they could. That's just crazy!
Okay let me ask you this you pull up on a chest pains with dif breathing walk inside boom someone with a gun. you have no protection and no means of protecting your self. I find if you have a permit to carry a firearm you should be able to.
Why is everyone so Anti gun, so what no one has the right to protect your self anymore. It can take 5-30 minutes for police to get 1-5 seconds to pull the trigger on a gun. I support the civilan and workers having firearms if they have the permit. Just like I support if you have a permit in college you should be able to carry a gun as well.
I haven't met an anti gun Fireman yet..Alot like myself are vets..Also the cops are pro gun to. They like all of us want the criminals to be punished not given a slap on the wrist. In some areas I know of one city in particuler were if a fireman has a permit he can carry on duty...Some not many do, because they go into crappy areas. Where some people don't distinguish between fire & police. We have vest on some rigs, the medics have them...Hell, some of our houses have bullet holes in them from drive bys. Where else but the City can you Fight Fire & Be Under Fire! It's what makes fighting fire in the ghettos a fun exciting job!

God Bless
Carrying might be a bad idea on the whole... But i'll be honest and thought using the odd taser here and there on there the odd patient might make me feel a lot better ;-) I can think of a few or our "regulars" that might benefit from it too - lol.

Gareth
A number of years ago stations on our southside wanted flack jackets added to our personal clothing allowance. We didn't even want the city to pay for it. The request was denied because the prevailing thought was it would give the city a bad name. It's hard out there be safe.

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