Being I live in Maryland and a county that surrounds Washington, DC, we have areas that you just can't walk into.

 We have a  location in our fire dept's area that has been a mystery for years. When we would travel up the street and turn on to the road and past a gate to a single building with a tall radio tower next to it. It sat in a fenced in field which you could see cows grazing on this field for years.

 We have heard stories where a crew from a fire dept that use to run the area, before our dept built a sub station in the area, decided to pay a call on this building for a fire inspection. Well one of the county officials got a call to come and get their fire truck and its crew off US Government Property before they go to jail.

 The official showed up and two armed men got in the car and told them drive up to the building where the crew was under armed guards. They left and return to the station after much discussion.

 A few years after the fire dept was call to respond to the building where they stop at the gate and two armed guards jump on. They asked for equipment off the truck and took it inside, then return it to the crew and escorted them off the property.

 I have heard other stories where teens playing football kicked the football on to the field and one of them climb the fence and retrieved the ball, after which armed men showed up with a Jeep and grabbed the teen and took him up to the building for a while before being returned.

 Over the years the property has changed. The radio tower is gone. There is a tall wall around the field. the gated has barriers to slow down vehicles and more buildings can be seen from the gate.

 For years just a mile up the street from my house there use to be US Government Property. I wondered for years what it was. There were buildings and these pads with doors. Well back in the 50s the city of Washington DC was surrounded by Nike missle sites to shoot down Russian bombers.

 One thing was a family who were members of our vol fire dept, bought part of the property to build homes on. Well the property was sold and then a shopping center was built on it.

  I just wonder if anyother fire dept has a mystery area where you have had questions about what happens there? 

Views: 982

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Oh Don't forget the lawyers who have to review any agreements.

Ben,

 

I'll grant you that on military installations, the DoD Fire is the first due and has the pre-planning for anything on post.

 

Your point 1): Signing/not signing the accidental exposure non-disclusore agreement isn't really an option. Surely even you understand that, right? All you are doing is acknowledging that you've been told that you cannot disclose anything you saw, and if you refuse to sign the NDA, it gets signed and notarized by two witnesses and is still just as legally enforceable and if you had signed it.

 

Points 2 & 3) If the Post Office in your town is involved in a fire at 0200, does your department respond? Is there a pre-exisitng agreement between your department and the Feds? If someone gets hurt while fighting a fire in the Post Office who is responsible?  The building is just another building within your jurisdiction, the owner of the building just happens to be Uncle Sam. Would it be any different if the building was owned by the State government, a publicly-traded company, a private citizen, or even a foreign government?  No it doesn't. The owner of the building (in this case the Federal government) either has insurance on the building, is self-insured, or would be liable for the cost of the firefigthing operations, including workers' comp claims (if any).

 

So, how does a Post Office differ from other federally-owned buildings in your district? Can't do pre-plans? how is that different from fighting fire in a private residence (i.e. an attached four-car garage on a mcmansion?)

 

How much liability does a fire department in your state incur when it allows a savable building to burn to the ground because it was a federally owned building and the chief decided he didn't fight a fire in a federally-owned building?

 

Frankly, buildings with classified operations will almost always be on military installations, that's the law, there are however very small amounts of classified information stored in some federal buildings, so a lack of pre-planning really a moot point, and those stand-alone facilities like described in the original post, they would probably rather it burn to the gourn before letting local FFs fight it, but it is a fun discussion.

 

Greenman

Define "legitimate counterpoint"?

So are you telling me that confusing mutual aid calls with calls in your first due is NOT apples and oranges?

 

Please define "anything and everything" while you are at it.

I'd really like to hear a factual definition of that one, and then an explanation of how it applies to this discussion.

 

And so far, I haven't seen anything that proves that responding to federal installations is a local responsibility other than the gray area of post offices or federal courthouses, which are typically single buildings and not "installations" in the sense of the secured sites that the TLP brought up.

He means that any time someone argues something they are automatically wrong because your way is the only way.  I stopped arguing with you because there's no point since you know it all.

 

By the way I just got you scheduled in for next week to teach the District of Columbia Fire Department how to do their job since we aren't that good.

Greenman,

 

Actually, I've worked in three different places where we pre-planned Post Offices and federal courthouses more or less whenever we wished.  It just took a phone call to schedule it and to arrange for an escort. 

 

Of course, we couldn't pre-plan the courtroom or the judge's chambers when they were occupied so we had to go in the evenings.

 

Except for locked case and Grand Jury files, there's not usually a lot of classified information in your basic courthouse or post office.  As "secure facilities" go, post offices are "not it" and unoccupied courthouses are generally one step above that with one nightime security guard.

 

As for local liability for letting a savable building burn down if the feds own it, if they rebuff local FD attempts to get a pre-fire contract or agreement establishing the rules, and in which the feds refuse to let the local FD pre-plan it or significant parts of it?  My guess is that liability would be zero, particularly if the chief had a reasonable belief that no life was in danger and that fighting a fire in a structure where the FD had been refused the ability to pre-plan.  In that case, the firefighters lives are a higher priority than the building and that would be pretty easy to prove in civil court.

 

 

 

 

You are mixing your mischaracterizations with your straw man logical fallacies.

 

I haven't said that anyone is automatically wrong - I just pointed out that you responded to me using points that were not pertinent, and I also stated why they were not pertinent. 

 

As for knowing it all, nope, not even close.  The more education and training you get, the more you realize how much you don't know.  I have learned how to differentiate between my first due and giving mutual aid, and I've also learned how to distinguish outliers from the center of the Bell curve, though.

 

And remember, I've never said that DC wasn't good.  YOU did that.  Feel free to stop putting words in my mouth.

 

 

The government back years ago built different facilities in areas which at the time were considered rural so that Washington DC or anyother city wouldn't be endanged by what happens at the facility.

 Now today because of urban sprawl homes and bussiness suround the facilities.

 A  military ammo facility closed in the Wash DC area after a explosion in one of its bunkers which cause damage around the site with a lot of glass breakage and rattled nerves. They had a federal fire station on the site so unless they called for help from the surronding county fire service because of this incident.

  Now the facility in my fire company's area now has homes churches, schools built around it. Then acourse the front gate proves you just can't go in there. Before it was a fence with a cattle gate when everything happened years ago. We still don't think about going in there because it doesn't look inviting.

I know what you are talking about.  I started my career in Washington County during the Cold War.  At that time there were a few of those "uninviting" places scattered around, and the military aircraft plant adjoining the Hagerstown airport was a fairly secure place, even though it was a contractor site and not directly federal.

Reply to Discussion

RSS

Find Members Fast


Or Name, Dept, Keyword
Invite Your Friends
Not a Member? Join Now

© 2022   Created by Firefighter Nation WebChief.   Powered by

Badges  |  Contact Firefighter Nation  |  Terms of Service