Fire Chief Dezzi gives year-end report
Fire Chief Paul Dezzi distributed the Year End Report for 2011 this week, and explained some of the functions of the department, and the firefighters’ and EMT’s commitment to service. Chief Dezzi highlighted the department’s continuing education in learning all the latest techniques for saving lives.
“This year, the department has built upon previous success by improving upon education for our personnel that will enhance their safety and provide quality services to the citizens and visitors. The department was successful in obtaining funding through grants for courses such as Incident Safety Officer Certification, Fire Officer 1 Certification and Municipal Fire Inspector Certification. These courses were offered without the use of overtime,” wrote Dezzi.
Dezzi also noted the department’s new inspection program that requires the firefighters access to buildings, both commercial and multi-family, allowing them to become familiar with the buildings they will be responding to when there is an emergency.
In 2010, the firefighters completed over 320 annual inspections, and the goal of the department is to have all buildings inspected within 2.5 years and ensure they are maintained on an annual basis.
The following are some of the highlights of the Year End Report:
• To answer life threatening emergencies within 8 minutes 90 percent of the time.
• To access, extricate, treat and transport trauma patients to a designated trauma center within one hour of the occurrence of the injury.
• Maintain overall emergency response readiness.
• Provide educational opportunities for department personnel to insure optimal performance and safety.
• To develop, evaluate, and maintain “best practices” to insure personnel and citizen safety.
• Insure fire safety through timely, consistent code compliance services to all external customers.
• Provide fire safety and injury prevention education to citizens and visitors.
• Provide all department services in a manner that satisfies the needs of our customers.
• Continue with preventive maintenance schedule of apparatus and tools.
Fire/EMS activities for 2011
• The department operates with thirty-three combat personnel, including three shift deputy chiefs. The minimum staffing is nine personnel on a daily basis with eleven personnel at full staffing.
• There were a total of 1,496 emergency incidents in 2011.
• 1,073 incidents were EMS related or 70 percent of the call volume.
• 423 incidents were Fire related of 30 percent of the call volume.
• 558 patients were transported. 74 percent of the patients received advanced life support.
• The Sarasota County side of Longboat Key receives 62 percent of the responses with Manatee County receiving 38 percent.
• 61 percent of the clientele are over 75 years of age.
• Traumatic Injures leads the EMS call volume followed by General Illness, and Heart related.
• There were 520 EKG’s performed on the scene.
• There were 11 STEMI Alerts, 9 Stroke Alerts, and 5 Trauma Alerts
• 194 times the department handled multiple calls at one time.
• 145 times the department handled two calls at the same time, 28 times handled three calls, and four calls eight times.
• Thursday was the busiest day of the week.
• March was the busiest month followed by January and April.
• Call Volume by hour of day
Facts about Longboat Key Fire Department
• Longboat Key Fire Rescue only employs firefighter/paramedics. This allows for all personnel on the scene to provide advanced life support (ALS) to patients(s).
• Advanced Life Support (ALS): A level of care provided by prehospital emergency medical services. Advanced life support consists of invasive life-saving procedures including the placement of advanced airway adjuncts, intravenous infusions, manual defibrillation, electrocardiogram interpretation, administration of medication, and more.
• The department operates with two fire apparatus and two ambulances (rescues) with all personnel trained as paramedics. All fire apparatus carry advanced medical equipment. When both ambulances are on emergency calls, the fire apparatus can respond and begin all medical procedures prior to the arrival of the ambulance. This is a very unique operation and one that many other fire departments will soon follow.
• The department operates 24 hours a day/ 7 days a week/ 365 days a year.
• The department has three shifts that rotate every 24 hour period.
1. Filled open positions in a timely manner
• This has prevented overtime costs for replacing personnel to keep within minimum manning requirements.
2. Purchased iPads for Operations
• This has proven to be a successful program. The IT department and members of the senior staff have been working together in developing and implementing great applications that will improve the overall operations of the department.
3. Reorganized shifts based on specialties…shifts are even
• The Deputy Chief’s met and realigned the department shifts so that all specialty personnel are equal among all three shifts. This has proven to be a successful move for the operations of the department.
4. Provided public education to the community through the media and HOA meetings
• Several articles have been published in area newspapers regarding public education, Fire/EMS training among other topics.
• Participated in Citizens Academy
• Public Education Program implemented for residents
5. Obtained State Grant for a new program; Beach Rescue Vehicle
• This will improve response times on the beach, provide access into limited areas such as parks, and improve patient outcomes.
6. Obtained local grant for fire courses to be taught in-house to firefighters
• For the first time in ten years we have hosted fire classes at LBKFR which sells our image as a well respected department wanting highest trained individuals.
• The grant awarded was for $13,000 that allowed for 13 employees to sit in the class.
• These classes allowed for our station libraries to be improved.
• A second grant was awarded for an Incident Safety Course for $4,500. This course will allow the department to have trained personnel that is required on all fire incidents.
• A Hydraulic and Pump Class was provided to all employees to ensure overall scene safety of fire department personnel and citizens during fire operations. These classes were taught while personnel were on-duty preventing any overtime.
7. Obtained grant for new fireboat
• Through the WCIND Grant process the fire department obtained a grant to purchase a new fireboat.
• The motors for this fireboat were approved last year and the funds encumbered until this year.
• The bid was awarded to WorldCat.
• The vessel is anticipated to be in service August 2012.
8. Established a public education program for the citizens
• Through the Office of the Deputy Chief and the President of the Volunteers a public education program is being developed.
• Education such as CPR/AED, Cooking Safety, and Injury Prevention are among topics being considered.
9. Established/implemented an employee recognition program
• Personnel are recognized for their exemplary service to the community by a citation bar that is worn on their Class A uniform.
• Personnel also choose a Firefighter of the Year and Officer of the Year who are recognized annually.
• D/C Drake was Officer of the Year & F/P James Reynolds was Firefighter of the Year.
10. Recertified personnel in CPR and ACLS
• All personnel have been recertified for the next two years.
11. Obtained approval to seek grant opportunities for a jet ski
• The Town Manager has given permission for the FD to seek a grant for the purchase of a jet ski.
• A DOH grant will be sought in FY12-13.
12. Implemented an annual fire inspection program through Operations
• There were some issues and concerns with the lack of inspections being done annually.
• By using shift inspectors to conduct annual fire inspections, 320 were completed compared to 68 in previous years.
13. Established a communication policy for all bridge tenders in emergency situations
• Because of some concerns raised as to the way communication is done by public safety agencies, a meeting was held at Manatee County ECC with the bridge tenders.
• A unified policy through ECC was established and implemented.
14. Physical Fitness (Healthier lifestyles & Increased Fitness Levels)
15. CPAT Testing
• Became a member of the IAFF CPAT Program that will allow the department to have a larger pool of applicants when hiring.
• This prevents overtime spending for LBKFR personnel to test and evaluate potential employees.
16. Extrication Demo
• Second Annual VW Extrication Demo at the LBK Club
• Executives from VW look for ways to improve their vehicles by having LBKFR personnel use hydraulic equipment on new VW.
17. EMS Pediatric Symposium
• LBK hosted this program taught by All Children’s physicians.
• Attended by outside agencies as well as LBKFR personnel.
18. CPR for Town Employees
• Volunteer President conducted several CPR classes.
• All Town employees participated and were re-certified.
19. Public Education Program
• Developed and implemented several public education topics for the public.
• Injury and Fire Prevention information.
• LBK Club employee class on 9-1-1 operations
20. Water Rescue Equipment
• A rescue board was purchased and assigned to the Polaris
• New water rescue equipment was purchased along with bags to be carried on first-out apparatus.
• Training is forthcoming.