Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Tacoma Residents Can Recycle Christmas Trees For Free-2011

TFD encourages you to remove and recycle your natural Christmas tree as soon as possible.  Never burn the tree, decorations or wrapping paper in your fireplace or woodstove. 

Landfill drop-off: Tacoma residents, apartment tenants and businesses in Tacoma may dispose of undecorated and unflocked trees free by bringing them to the recycling center at the City of Tacoma Landfill (3510 S. Mullen St). Trees may be dropped off between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. Dec. 26 through Jan. 22. The landfill will be closed Jan. 1. Apartment managers or landlords who collect tenants’ trees may drop them off all at once for free, but are encouraged to call (253) 591-5543 in advance. Tree lot operators and nonprofit groups must pay for disposal.

Curbside collection: Solid Waste Management will collect only trees that have been cut and placed inside the brown yard waste container with the lid closed flat. Trees left next to containers will not be collected. Tacoma residents may recycle Christmas trees free at the Tacoma Landfill’s Recycling Center (3510 S. Mullen St.), Dec. 26 through Jan. 22. Decorated or flocked trees cannot be recycled and must go in the garbage. Customers with questions about Christmas tree recycling may call (253) 591-5543.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

TFD food drive supports YWCA - 2011

An annual event since 2003, Tacoma Fire Department takes great pride in supporting our local YWCA women's shelter.  Department employees hosted several friendly contests to see which team could bring in the most donations - with firefighters on "C" shift narrowly edging out the "D" shift crews as top contributors.

Established in 1906, the YWCA Pierce County has devoted over a century to creating opportunity and safety for women and children in our community.  A forerunner in the domestic violence service provision field, the YWCA established Washington State's first domestic violence shelter in 1976.

A human supply chain of firefighters and YWCA staff helped unload and stock over 5,000 pounds of non-perishable staples that will help feed the programs participants throughout the holidays and for many months to come.  "Having a variety of food on hand that we can prepare for our clients is truly a blessing and we are very grateful for TFD's support of the shelter", said Karin White-Tautfest, Director of Shelter and Advocacy Services.

Friday, December 16, 2011

2011 Firefighter's Christmas Project

 Tacoma Firefighters raise $14,000 to brighten the holidays for 110 local families.

For the past 23 years, Tacoma Firefighters have brought holiday cheer to the lives of thousands of Tacoma children and their families with deliveries of food, clothing and gifts just before Christmas. This year, firefighters have raised over $14,000 dollars to help more than 110 children and families in need.

“It’s always a great honor to help bring a little happiness to those in need during the holidays,” said project co-founder Lieutenant Jim Lee (other co-founders include Lieutenant Andrea Schroeder and Firefighter Ron Ernst). This year’s contributors include active and retired Tacoma Firefighters, Tacoma Professional Firefighters Local #31, the Tacoma Fire Department and the Office of the Pierce County Council.

Special deliveries from a fire engine, medic unit and Santa Claus are scheduled for Dec. 17 and Dec. 22. This year’s recipients were identified through the Tacoma School District Head Start Program, YWCA Women’s Shelter, and the Sharing House.

For additional information regarding this event, contact Lieutenant Jim Lee at (253) 381-0851.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Recruit Class Graduation - December 2011

Family and friends gathered for a cheerful graduation ceremony today, as the Tacoma Fire Department welcomed 16 new firefighters to their ranks this afternoon. The graduates completed 14 weeks of intensive preparation, and have been diligently training to respond to hazardous materials incidents, vehicle extrication operations, confined space rescue, fire suppression, and emergency medical incidents.

On behalf of the citizen's we serve and the Tacoma Fire Department, welcome and congratulation's recruits!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

"Tried and True" Recipe For A Safe Thanksgiving

According to data from the United States Fire Administration, an estimated 2,000 Thanksgiving Day fires are reported to fire departments each year, causing an estimated 5 deaths, 25 injuries, and $21 million in property loss.

As you prepare for Thanksgiving this year, Tacoma Fire Department encourages everyone to follow this "tried and true" recipe for a safe holiday.

When it comes to cooking:
  • Keep a close watch on your cooking. Never leave cooking food unattended.
  • Keep oven food packaging and combustibles away from burners and heat sources.
  • Heat cooking oil slowly and watch it closely; it can ignite quickly.
  • Have a "kid-free zone" of at least three-feet around the stove.
  • Keep a lid nearby to smother small grease fires.
  • Make sure you have a working smoke alarms.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System November 9 is no cause for alarm.

Help us spread the word about tomorrow's big test!

The Federal Emergency Management Agency, Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and National Weather Service will conduct their very first national test of the Emergency Alert System on Nov. 9 at 11:00 a.m. The test may be up to 30 seconds long and is expected to be broadcast simultaneously over all communication service providers: television stations (including digital television, cable, satellite audio and television services) and broadcast radio stations across the U.S. and several U.S. territories.

Calls to 9-1-1 to inquire about the test are not advised, as they may delay dispatch centers from receiving calls from citizens reporting true emergencies. For detailed information, visit the FCC's website.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Fall Back On Sound Advice: Time to change your clock and smoke alarm batteries!

As daylight savings time approaches, please remember to check/change the batteries in your smoke alarms when you change your clocks back this Sunday, November 6.

Smoke alarms most often fail because of missing, dead or disconnected batteries, so maintenance is a simple and effective way to protect your family and reduce home fire deaths.

According to the Washington State Fire Marshal, the majority of fire deaths in our State occur in homes without working smoke alarms. Furthermore, the peak time for home fire fatalities is between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. - when families are sleeping and most vulnerable!

For best protection, it is recommended that people install alarms utilizing both (ionization and photoelectric) technology and ones that have long life 10 year batteries.  If your smoke alarm was installed before November 2001, it needs to be replaced.

Visit the United States Fire Administration and National Fire Protection Association for additional information regarding smoke alarm types, installation, maintenance and safety.

One Arrested In Overnight Halfway House Fire - South Sheridan Street

Incident Date:  11/2/2011
Issuing Officers: Joe Meinecke & B.C. Jeff Chandler
Incident Location: 1947 S. Sheridan Street
Incident Type: Residential Structure Fire

Narrative: At 2:11 a.m. Tacoma Firefighters responded to a reported residential structure fire at 1947 S. Sheridan Street.  The first arriving engine company found heavy flames and smoke showing from the first floor of the the two story 1,700 square foot house.  Crews attacked the fire with hand lines and used a ground ladder to rescue one occupant trapped on the second floor.  All 6 of the homes occupants escaped without injury and were aided by the Red Cross with relocation assistance. 

Tacoma Police Department arrested one of the occupants on scene suspected of starting the blaze, and the fire caused an estimated $75,000 dollars damage to the building and it's contents.

Monday, October 31, 2011

North East Tacoma House Fire 52nd Street NE

Incident Date: 10/31/2011
Issuing Officer: Joe Meinecke
Incident Location: 4014 52nd Street NE
Incident Type: Residential Structure Fire with one injury

Narrative: At 12:14 p.m. seven companies of Tacoma Firefighters (four engines, one ladder, one medic company and command staff) responded to a reported house fire.

The first arriving engine company found heavy flames and smoke showing from the attached garage area of the over 3,000 square foot residence.  Crews attacked the fire with hand lines, conducted primary search and rescue and paramedics transported one occupant to an area hospital as a result of their injuries.  Firefighters were also able to locate and rescue the family dog trapped in the house.

The cause of the fire is currently under investigation.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Fire Prevention Week October 9-15, 2011

Residents can celebrate Fire Prevention Week by visiting six neighborhood fire stations from 1-3 p.m. Saturday, October 15. This year’s theme, “protect your family from fire,” encourages everyone to team up and spread the message that fire safety saves lives!

Equipment will be on display and firefighters will answer questions about escape planning, fire safety and disaster preparedness.

The following six stations will host open houses:

Station 3 -   206 Browns Point Blvd, NE Tacoma
Station 4 -   1453 S. 12th (Earnest S Brazil St), Hilltop
Station 11 - 3802 McKinley Ave., McKinley Hill
Station 13 - 3825 N. 25th, Proctor
Station 16 - 7217 6th Ave., Skyline/West End District
Station 17 - 302 Regents Blvd., Fircrest

For more information on the activities hosted at each station, call the Tacoma Fire Department Fire Prevention Bureau at 591-5740. We look forward to seeing you there!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Great Turnout For CPR Sunday

The 14th annual CPR Sunday event was a tremendous success this year. "We are very grateful to the over 800 hundred participants who turned out to learn how to perform CPR and use an Automated External Defibrillator," said TFD firefighter and co-organizer Craig Hannah.  "Early intervention in a sudden cardiac situation is key, and now hundreds more are better prepared to possibly save a life someday" pointed out Hannah.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

It's Not Too Late - Register Now For Sunday's CPR Training

Just a reminder that there is still time to register and attend our annual CPR training on Sunday.  

CPR Sunday will be held Oct. 9, at Foss High School, 2112 S. Tyler St. in Tacoma.

In order to secure your preferred class time please pre-register at http://www.cprsunday.net/registration.php.

Residential Structure Fire 46th & S. Park Ave

Incident Date: 10/05/2011
Issuing Officer: Joe Meinecke
Incident Location: 4633 S. Park Ave
Incident Type: Residential Structure Fire

Narrative:  At 3:48 a.m. seven companies of Tacoma firefighters (four engines, one ladder, one medic company and command staff) responded to a reported house fire.

The first arriving engine company found heavy smoke and flames showing from approximately 25% of the second floor and roof area of the 1,326 square foot two-story house.  Operationally, the crews extinguished the fire with hand lines, completed vertical ventilation and conducted search and rescue.

The fire displaced one occupant and there were no injuries to report.  The cause of the fire was failed electrical wiring, resulting in an estimated $105,000 dollars damage to the building and its contents.


Sunday, October 2, 2011

Residential Structure Fire 52nd Street N.E.

Incident Date: 10/2/2011
Issuing Officers: Jeff Chandler & Joe Meinecke
Incident Location: 3820 52nd St. N.E.
Incident Type: Residential Fire

Narrative: At 3:22 a.m. ten companies of Tacoma firefighters (six engines, one ladder, two medic companies, and command staff) responded to a reported residential structure fire.

First arriving units found a heavy flames and smoke shooting from the second floor and roof area of the two-story approximately 3,600 square foot house.  Crews battled the well established blaze with hand lines and protected the two neighboring houses from igniting due to the the intensity of the heat.  Additionally, the ignition of the cedar shake roofing materials contributed to the rapid spread of the fire a crossed the roof line.

The two occupants of the home were able to escape safely and there were no injuries to report.  The cause and origin of the fire are currently under investigation.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Hazardous Conditions Call Murray Morgan Bridge

Incident Date: 9/25/2011
Issuing Officer: Joe Meinecke
Incident Location: 11th and A Street
Incident Type: Hazardous Conditions

Narrative:  At 11:45 a.m firefighters were called to a report of a hazardous condition on the Murray Morgan Bridge.

First arriving firefighters found that the protective plastic sheathing surrounding one of the towers on the bridge (related to construction) had failed and a large volume of particulate matter was being blown from the scene.  The incident was upgraded to a hazardous materials call to bring in additional resources to determine the nature of the plume of material coming out of the site.

The Incident Commander and Haz-Mat technicians determined that the plume consisted primarily of materials used in the sand blasting process (inert) and the scene was turned over to the general contractor to secure the sheathing and for clean up.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Fire at Lowell Elementary

Incident Date: 9/19/2011
Issuing Officer: Joe Meinecke
Incident Location: 810 N. 13th Street 
Incident Type: Commercial Fire

Narrative:  At 1:14 p.m. ten companies of Tacoma firefighters (five engines, two ladders, two medic units and command staff) responded to a reported fire at Lowell Elementary School.

First arriving companies found flames and smoke showing from a teacher/staff kitchen located in the "primary wing" area of a building on campus.  Crews attacked the fire with handlines and contained the fire to the room of origin - preventing it from spreading to the two classrooms housed in the building.

There were no injuries to report and the cause of the fire is currently under investigation.  Preliminary indications are that the fire was accidental in nature.

UPDATE: Investigators have determined that unattended cooking spark the blaze and caused an estimated $40,000 damage to the building and its contents.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

House Fire on 49th and North Pearl Street

Incident Date: 9/14/2011
Issuing Officer: Joe Meinecke
Incident Location: 4921 N. Pearl Street
Incident Type: Mutual Aid - Residential House Fire

Narrative:  At 2:15 p.m. seven units of Tacoma firefighters (four engines, one ladder, one medic company and command staff) joined Ruston firefighters on scene for a mutual aid residential house fire.

Crews used handlines and vertical ventilation techniques to swiftly attack and bring under control a fire that originated in the basement area of the house and had spread to the first and second floors. 

The fire displaced four occupants (two adults and two children) and their were no injuries to report.

The cause and origin investigation is being conducted by the Ruston Fire Department.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Thank You for Attending the 9/11 Ceremony

Thank you to all who attended this years "A Decade of Courage" Remembering 9/11 ceremony. A special thank you to the Tacoma Fire Department Honor Guard, and Unit Commander Karen Leming for organizing the event, Gig Harbor Fire and Medic One for bringing a piece of World Trade Center Steel and to the dozens of other participants who contributed to the 10th anniversary remembrance of lives lost and forever changed. Finally, we are grateful for the hundreds of who joined us in honoring our nations solem vow - we have not forgotten!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Ammonia Leak Forces Evacuation

Incident Date: 9/7/11
Issuing Officer: Joe Meinecke
Incident Location: 8220 Pacific Hwy E
Incident Type: Hazardous Materials

Narrative:  At 6:46 a.m. 7 units of Tacoma firefighters (three engines, one ladder, one medic unit, haz-mat 44, and command staff) responded to a reported ammonia leak at a fuel and ice distribution business.

Hazardous materials technicians made entry into the building and confirmed that a leaking pipe caused a minor Ammonia release.  Air monitoring equipment indicated elevated levels of Ammonia vapors in the building representing a significant respiratory risk.

Operationally, the leak was located and stopped, the occupants of the source business, one adjacent business and four nearby houses were evacuated for precautionary measures.   Firefighters are currently conducting a methodical process of ventilating the building and monitoring the air quality to mitigate the hazard.

There were no injuries to report.      

Friday, September 2, 2011

Firefighters Embark On Tribute Ride to New York City

Tacoma, WA: Nearly 40 firefighters from Western Washington joined forces today to embark on a roughly 3,000 mile motorcycle ride in honor of the victims of the September 11th attack. Departing from the Tacoma Firefighters Memorial on Ruston Way, the group is currently making its way along I-90 and will be joining thousands of firefighters from the International Association of Fire Fighters who are riding in solidarity. The group is expected to reach New York City on September 9.

One of several riders from Pierce County, Tacoma firefighter Will Yuste considered this opportunity a "great honor to pay tribute to all who lost their lives that day and to let those left behind know that the extended fire service family has not forgotten”.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

National Preparedness Month - September 2011

The City of Tacoma Emergency Management would like to remind everyone that September is National Preparedness Month (NPM).  NPM focuses attention on what citizens should do to ready themselves, their families and their communities for potential disasters.  This years theme is "a time to remember a time to prepare".  You can help remember the tragic events of 9/11 by joining us at our annual  September 11th ceremony and you can get prepared by completing the following.     

According to Ready.Gov, the U.S. government’s official preparedness website, there are three key steps for each citizen to become prepared for an emergency:
  1. Get A Kit:  Keep enough emergency supplies on hand for you and those in your care. For example, water, non-perishable food, first aid, prescriptions, flashlight, and a battery-powered radio.
  2. Make A Plan:  Discuss, agree on, and document an emergency plan with those in your care. Work together with neighbors, colleagues and others to build community resilience.
  3. Be Informed:  Free information is available to assist you from federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial resources.
Like to stay informed?  Sign up for Pierce County emergency alerts to be notified about emergencies and other important community news such as severe weather, unexpected road closures, missing persons, and evacuation of buildings or neighborhoods.

Want to get involved? Consider attending a Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training to learn about how to prepare and respond to a disaster in our community.

Monday, August 15, 2011

CPR Sunday Registration Is Open

CPR Sunday is an annual community event offered free-of-charge to anyone interested in learning the basic life-saving skills of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). On the second Sunday in October each year, students are taught the fundamentals of CPR and then given the opportunity to practice with CPR manikins and Automated External Defibrillators (AED). Over 900 participants attended this life saving class last year.

CPR Sunday will be held Oct. 9, at Foss High School, 2112 S. Tyler St. in Tacoma.

In order to secure your preferred class time please pre-register at http://www.cprsunday.net/registration.php.

What Attendees Can Expect

  • More than 50 certified Basic Life Support instructors
  • 1 1/2 hours of classroom training
  • Four class options: 8 a.m., 10 a.m., 12 p.m., or 2 p.m.
  • Practical training with CPR manikins and AED's.
What Attendees Will Learn
  • What happens when you call 9-1-1
  • Patient assessment
  • One rescuer adult/child/infant CPR and obstructed airway
  • Automated external defibrillator use
  • Foreign body airway obstruction management
  • Essentials of a home first aid kit
  • CPR-related information/reminder list for home and wallet
Note - this class is "Citizen Level CPR" and does not meet the Washington State Health Care Provider Level card requirements.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Save the Date - September 11, 2011

The Tacoma Fire Department Honor Guard invites you to join us for the 10th anniversary “Remembering 9/11” ceremony.  The event begins at 9:30 a.m. Sunday September 11, at the Tacoma Firefighters Memorial at 3301 Ruston Way.

Firefighters will also be accepting donations on behalf of the Pierce County Emergency Food Network at this event.  Please bring non-perishable food items (e.g. peanut butter) to drop off in support of this important community service.

We Have Not Forgotten