Inside PF&R's Station 8
Originally built in 1959 and remodeled in 2004, Station 8 is located at 7134 N. Maryland Avenue in North Portland. Station 8 is a double company house staffing Engine 8 and Truck 8 which has one of two bucket aerial platforms in PF&R.
Station 8 has a large Fire Management Area that covers both commercial and residential areas. With the populated areas of Kenton, Arbor Lodge, Piedmont, and Sunderland neighborhoods in their FMA, EMS calls as well as residential and apartment fires are all call types that Station 8 frequently responds to. 8's is also located right next to a busy part of the Interstate 5 freeway, which makes the station a prime location for responding quickly to vehicle accidents on the northern part of the I-5 in Portland. The engine and truck at Station 8 works with Station 24 to cover Swan Island's ship board fires, as well as assist Station 17 with emergencies on Hayden Island.
Station 8 firefighters take a lot of pride in their station. 8's is known for having the "nicest yard in the city", which all the firefighters proudly maintain. 8's also houses the defending champions of Portland Fire's Basketball Tournament. These firefighters take physical fitness very seriously, which enables them to stay in good condition for their physically demanding jobs.
15th Annual Adult Soapbox Derby
Firefighters from Portland Fire & Rescue Station 19are gearing up for a time honored tradition in the community they directly serve. The 15th Annual PDX Adult Soapbox Derby is just weeks away and the Engine 19 Reservoir Dogs are getting ready.
Off-duty firefighters will turn into race car drivers, returning for their fourth year of competition and braving the daunting slopes of Mt. Tabor to test their homemade soapbox. Station 19 firefighters are ready to smoke their competition and blaze by 42 other competitors entered in the race. Win or lose, it is a great community event that the station looks forward to every year.
The event runs Saturday, August 13th at Mt. Tabor. Kids and adults of all ages are welcome to come enjoy the race and support the Engine 19 Reservoir Dogs as they go for gold!
World Cup Soccer Tournament
When Polo Catalani from the City of Portland's Office of Human Relations approached PF&R about participating in the Refugee World Cup soccer tournament, fire chiefs agreed this would be a great opportunity for Portland Fire to participate in our community. 16 teams-made up of high school immigrant/refugee students from the Portland area--competed on July 1st and 2nd at Delta Park. Firefighters from Station 7 and 24 stepped up to coach these young men.
The teams made their coaches proud. Station 24's team, from Roosevelt and Jefferson High Schools, made it to the quarter-finals after two days of intense play. Station 7's team, comprised entirely of David Douglas students, made it all the way to semi-finals, where they played a tough game. Unfortunately, the team lost 2-0 in overtime.
Alejandro Vidales, the event coordinator from Portland Parks shared his thoughts of PF&R's role." One of the highlights for me of this tournament was for the kids to refer to Fire's staff as "our guys". None of these kids had ever been in a fire station before or had the opportunity to meet firefighters. After following up with some of the kids a few of them are seriously considering applying or looking into becoming firefighters!"
The tournament was about celebrating diversity and building relationships with kids who need help staying on a path for success in the future. Firefighters from Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) don't only fight fires and provide medical aid, they also understand the importance of being positive role models and involved in the communities they serve. The firefighters from Station 7 and 24 did a great job coaching these young men and are looking forward to next year.
Firefighters Say Trip to Ghana was Complete Success
In Ghana, there is an old proverb about trying to get to the top of the tree to get the very best fruit. They all want that delicious fruit but just need a little help up to those first branches before they can climb the rest of the way to the top. This is where Firefighter Ed Resch and Lieutenant Chris Barney, along with two other Clackamas firefighters, stepped in to help.
As a part of Global Mission Readiness (GMR), a locally based non-profit, the team set out for Ghana this past May for 17 days. Thier goal was to educate Ghanaians about emergency service, promotie disaster prevention, and to leave the country with a fire station in their area that was self-reliant and capable of providing response to local people. Ask them both how things went and they will respond that their trip was a complete success.
In the small city of Kumasi (30-45 minutes from the town they stayed in) there are only 2-3 fire stations and 5 ambulances serving 2.5 million people. The one fire station's engine has been broken down and out of service for over a year. Fires seldom happen in these towns and cities (bush and wildfires are more common) however the strip of road that runs between Kumasi and the town is one of the most dangerous and fatal spots for drivers in all of Ghana. Pot holes and missing chunks of cement ravage the road and the reckless speeds drivers take kills many. Though there are local zonal volunteers there to respond along this road, it was the team's mission to train and prepare more of their citizens for emergency incident response.
Four days out of the weeks spent there, Resch and Lt. Barney held class for 50 students, with a new incoming class each week. They went over general first aid as well as response to injuries that could occur during a car accident. Students used their knowledge and applied it to practice with various drills and exercises as well. However it was different not having all the equipment and tools that would be found in the US; many had to improvise with make-shift splints. Not only was equipment use improvised at times, but they had to adapt to the culture with the class lessons.
Lt. Barney noted, "It was enjoyable watching the students as they learned the skills over time. All of them were eager and attentive during class. By the end of the week, these 50 strangers developed into friends."
When not teaching, Resch and Barney along with Tim Barbknecht and David Anderson from Clackamas Fire, were able to travel around the country and really experience the different culture. They visited a monkey and crocodile sanctuary and also got out to a safari to see other African animals like elephants and zebras. When it came to the food, Resch admits, "We couldn't always tell what we were eating." The main diet consisted of fish and during a traditional dinner with their translator/guide's family, they were given the national dish of Fufu and ate it with their hands.
The people of Ghana are not only the friendliest people you will come across, say the team, but they are very proud of their country and culture and want you to share it with the rest of the world after a visit. The firefighter volunteer team not only donated emergency equipment to the local station, but the team was able to visit the local "Linda School" and bring books and school supplies to the students.
After returning to the states, Resch and Lt. Barney now notice more of the cultural differences. Barney says that he is now more appreciative of the little things such as all the equipment they have around the station. Both agree that it was a wonderful experience with far reaching implications for that region in Ghana. With the organization GMR, they are hoping to make the Ghana volunteer trip an annual one and hopefully get people to go back in January. Each day, GMR gets requests for volunteered help and relief work in foreign countries. If you are interested in volunteering in the upcoming Ghana trip or any other GMR abroad operations check out their website: http://globalmissionreadiness.org/donate.php
Window Falls and Safety Tips
As of July 12, 2011, four young children have fallen from windows in Portland - nine state-wide. Window falls are predictable and 100% preventable. As a homeowner, it is important to protect commonly opened windows that are low to the floor on second (or third, or higher) stories. Even if children don't live in the home, children may likely visit. Many windows come equipped with screens, but the primary goal of a window screen is to keep bugs out of the home. Window screens will not protect children who are leaning against an open window from falling.
The ideal kind of window protection for your house is one that allows airflow in, and can be taken out by an adult without any tools or skill-specific knowledge (similar to a baby gate that protects stairs from a toddling child, an adult can undo a lock in case of emergency, whereas a young child would just be blocked).
Window stops allow your window to open more than four inches. The window can be cracked, but the space is not wide enough for any small child to stick their head out of. Window stops are available at the Legacy Emanuel Safety Store and the Historic Belmont Firehouse.
Window guards are clear, hollow, plastic bars arranged in a grid. They allow the window to open to full capacity, but will safely hold in a child trying to lean out. Window guards are available at Legacy Emanuel Safety Store, and installation is simple and can be explained onsite.
Both of these options are easy to install and will protect any child from a fall. All homeowners are encouraged to assess the windows in their home and identify if any of them need extra safeguard from curious children.
The Safety Store is located in the Children's Hospital at Legacy Emanuel 2801 N. Gantenbein.
Rose Planting Ceremony Honors Fallen Firefighters
In a beautiful ceremony at Station 24, the Royal Rosarians led the planting of the "Firefighter" rose and the dedicated 19 other rose bushes which will be planted around the city at Portland fire stations.
343 firefighters lives were lost in the September 11th terrorist attacks, but Sue Casey has found a way remember them through roses. Through her creation of "Remember Me" Rose Gardens, her vision of providing a living tribute to the victims of September 11th is being realized through plans for a rose garden at each of the three sites: New York City, Washington D.C., and Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
"When I met Lt. Bob Jackson from Engine 54, Ladder 4, Battalion 9 in mid-town Manhattan on February 16, 2002, he told me he wanted a red rose to name "Firefighter". Not only for the 15 [firefighters] from his house who died on September 11th, but for all the  firefighters lost that day," Sue Casey said explaining her inspiration for the rose.
The incredibly fragrant "Firefighter" rose petals were bursting after finally waiting for the sun to shine in Portland and for them to bloom. Fire Chief Klum spoke on behalf of Portland Fire saying, "This particular rose has a special place in our firefighters' hearts as we give remembrance of the service and sacrifice of those others on September 11th. These roses will bloom for many years to come."
The Royal Rosarian Grand Marshal also spoke about the roses being a living testimonial to the leadership of our worthy firefighters and the fateful day of September 11th. "We can't think of more of a fitting place to plant and dedicate these roses than to the people who have provided for our citizens and community so gallantly," he said.
Nineteen other Portland Fire and Rescue stations will each receive the "Firefighter" rose bush to be planted at their respective station.
If you are interested in purchasing a "Firefighter" rose bush, contact Dennis 7 Dees Garden Center (6025 Southeast Powell Boulevard, Portland) at 503-777-1421.
Emergency Response Statistics (June 2011)
Total Incidents: 5,423
Major Fires: 14*
*Major fires are those with over $10,000 in estimated fire damage.
Help HAZMAT Station 7 Win $10,000 by Voting Everyday
Our very own HAZMAT Station 7 is still in the running for Treetop's America's Best Firehouse BBQ Cook-Off competition for a chance to win $10,000 and we still need YOUR help to vote online!
As a top 10 finalist, Station 7 has stepped up to the challenge and entered their most delicious recipe of Apple Wood Smoked Chicken and Waldorf Salad along with a 4 minute clip on what makes their dish and their station special.
"Firefighters are like one big family; we work hard together, train together, exercise and eat together to foster the camaraderie at any given firehouse," said Grant Coffey.
You still have time to vote by going to http://americasbestfirehousebbq.com/ Vote every day until July 29th to support Station 7 and the Portland Fire community. The grand prize of $10,000 will be donated to a local non-profit charity that focuses on helping families of first responders during crisis situation if the station wins. Watch the video by going to: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5_uSh6C791o&feature=player_embedded
You can also find the two mouth-watering recipes on our Fire Blog!
Message to Firefighter Applicants From Terry Foster, Recruiting Officer
One of the things that people need to know about the testing process with PF&R is that it takes time to get though the whole process, so be patient! Our open enrollment ended July 1st with 3,500 candidates signing up for our August 1st firefighter exam. We have a written exam comprised of four parts: Portland Fire study materials, math, reading comprehension, and mechanical aptitude.
Although this study guide is going to be the bulk of the written exam, the rest of the exam will be general knowledge with no study guide provided. Applicants should arrive early for check-in on August 1st with their Photo ID and their candidate ID number <Applicant_presonID> which is assigned from the government jobs website. The exam is scheduled for two hours but applicants should expect to be in the testing room for up to three hours. Pass/fail notifications will be sent out by the end of the month. Good luck to all!
**Portland Fire study materials have been available on our website since April 18th.
First Annual Barbeque Cookout for the Oregon Burn Center
On Saturday, July 9, 2011, firefighters, non-sworn bureau members, and community members flocked to the Historic Belmont Fire House for station tours and a barbeque cookout to support the Oregon Burn Center. Lt. Damon Simmons, an Assistant Public Information Officer for Portland Fire, organized the event to bring the community together, celebrate our historic firehouse, and support this worthy organization.
Firefighters cooked Noho's Hawaiian chicken and brisket for the 110 people who came out to support us. The Oregon Burn Center is one of only two centers in the Pacific Northwest (the second is located in the Seattle area) which serves all of Oregon, Southern & Eastern Washington, Western Idaho, Northern California, and Alaska. It is considered one of the top 15 burn centers in the United States, and is fully equipped to remain self sufficient in case of emergency.
The barbeque cookout was a great success, raising $1,800 for the Burn Center through donations, and even more in ticket sales. PF&R thanks all who participated and supported this great cause.
4th of July Recap
Portland Fire saw many instances of illegal fireworks this July 4th holiday. More disruptive and destructive than anything was the numerous fires they caused throughout the city. Most costly was the $100,000 damage caused during a 2-alarm fire at two businesses on NE Alberta Street. Aviary and Barista Coffee Shop were both extensively damaged as a result of illegal fireworks landing on the businesses' roof. Portland Fire responded to a total of 41 fires on July 4th, half of which were caused by illegal fireworks.
Portland Fire's Operation Lower the Boom (OLB) worked throughout 4th of July night confiscating illegal firework and educating Portland's citizens about the danger of fireworks and how they can keep themselves and their homes safe.
Station 17 Rose Award
On Tuesday, June 28th, Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) firefighters were honored for something new - their gardening skills. At the Royal Rosarians' Rose Garden Contest Award Presentation, Station 17 Captain Scott and Firefighters Randy, Bruce, and Mark were honored with the Division 12 Commercial Award.
The station is well known for The Jim Canton Memorial Rose Garden, located at the west side of the station. It is named after a longtime island resident and local businessman who died suddenly in 1997. This rose garden is maintained by the crew as well as a local volunteer who tends the roses once a week. The garden is home to about 55 different rose bushes which won the firefighters the Rose Garden Award.
The Jim Canton Memorial Rose Garden was judged on design and layout of roses, soil condition, pruning, maintenance, vigor, and bloom quality.
The Rose Garden Contest is a Portland tradition, stemming all the way back to 1932 when the 4-H committee and Portland Public Schools took a strong interest in children learning the acute skills of rose gardening, and adults from the community ("Rosarians") acted as mentors for the children. Just as Portland Fire & Rescue serves the City of Portland, the Royal Rosarians work hard all year to help maintain Portland's Rose Gardens and cultivate public interest in our city's flower.
Upcoming PF&R Events
Aug. 1, PF&R Firefighter Written Test
Aug. 2, National Night Out
Aug. 13, 15th Annual Soapbox Derby
Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) is the largest fire agency and emergency medical service provider in the State of Oregon with 755 employees and serves a population of 582,000. In 2010, PF&R responded to 65,403 emergency incidents, consistently demonstrating our commitment to be Always Ready, Always There for the citizens of Portland.
Portland Fire & Rescue
55 SW Ash
Portland, Oregon 97204
Ideas? Questions? Contact E-News Editor Alisa Cour at 503-823-3383.