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Narcan: Is It Necessary? with Dr Bryan Bledsoe

Narcan has been pitched as the single best way to deal with opioid overdose. And while it does work, it’s being overused and misused. Some EMS providers and cops are administering it just-in-case … even if they aren’t sure they’re treating an opioid overdose. But Narcan has a lot of nasty effects on the patient. My guest today says EMS providers rarely need to use it at all. Dr. Bryan Bledsoe is a Professor of Emergency Medicine at the UNLV School of Medicine. He routinely works the...


Yoga for Firefighters? with Shannon McQuaide

Here’s an idea: Yoga for firefighters. Wait—don’t skip this episode yet! You owe it to yourself to hear about this, because, even if you think yoga’s not for you, it can probably help. It’s got a lot of benefits for firefighters. Here to explain why is Shannon McQuaide, the Director of FireFlex Yoga. That’s right, she runs a business specifically tailored to providing yoga for the fire service. She comes from a fire family, so she knows what firefighters need. She has 10 years of experience...


Being the Senior Man with Casey Clinkscales

The most powerful position in the firehouse is likely NOT the Captain. You know who I’m talking about: the Senior Man. He commands respect simply because he’s seen a lot. But, whether he recognizes it or not, he’s also got a lot of responsibility. My guest today is a Senior Man, and he’s here to tell us what that really means and why. Casey Clinkscales has been a firefighter for 12 years, most recently in Irmo, South Carolina.


You'll Fight Like You Train with Robby Owens

Training is the key to knowing how to fight fires, especially when your department doesn’t respond to frequent real-world structure fires. It’s also the way to make sure no one gets hurt. But there’s a right way to train and a whole lot of wrong ways, according to my guest today. He’s here to tell us how training goes wrong and how it can be more realistic. Robby Owens has been a firefighter for over 20 years. He’s a captain in the Henrico County, Virginia, Division of Fire.


Minimizing Risks and Making Choices with David Cain

Let’s talk safety. Or, rather, let’s talk risk, because we know firefighting isn’t safe. Risks are all about choices. The objective is to make choices that minimize risk. There are ways to do this, and my guest today says we need to do them. David Cain retired as a deputy chief at the Boulder Colorado Fire Department, where he served for 34 years.


Why Don't People Fear Fire? with Ray Reynolds

It’s been over 70 years since President Harry S. Truman issued the first Presidential Report that told citizens how to survive a house fire. But people still don’t seem to give fire the respect it deserves. They go back in to burning homes to save pets or property. They still won’t change smoke alarm batteries or call the fire department, even when they live in a city where firefighters will do it for them. Why? Here to give us some possible answers and solutions is Ray Reynolds. He’s the...


Fitness: Don’t Just Say It, Do It! with Dan Kerrigan

A few years back, the NFPA said that just 27 percent of fire departments had a basic firefighter fitness and health program, and that was down from 30 percent in 2010. My guest today says that the time has come for the fire service to prioritize the health and wellness of its firefighters on a national level. It’s time to stop talking about how important firefighter fitness is and start doing something about it. Here to explain why is Dan Kerrigan. Dan is a 32-year veteran of the fire...


Should EMS Require a College Degree? with David Becker

Is EMS work a trade or a profession? There’s a growing push to require at least a 2-year associate’s degree for certification. Some officials want a bachelor’s degree to be required. Here to give us some perspective on all this is David Becker. He’s currently a Faculty Member for Columbia Southern University’s programs in Emergency Medical Services Management and Emergency Medical Services Administration. David worked for twenty-two years in the fire service including fifteen years as a...


Undoing Our Own Efforts at Hiring Diversity with Trisha Wolford

Are you tired of hearing about diversity in the fire service yet? I’m going to assume you are. The question is, why, in 2018, almost 2019, are we still talking about it? My guest today has an interesting theory: The hiring process brings in more diverse probies, but then the training process homogenizes them all over again. Here to explain how and why this can be avoided is Trisha Wolford. She's an assistant chief with the Spokane, Washington Fire Department.


What's a Firefighter Worth? with Keith Collins

What’s a firefighter worth to the community? Now what’s a professional athlete worth? There’s no doubt that pro sports generates a lot of revenue for a city, not to mention intangible benefits. But my guest today has crunched the numbers, and found that pro athletes – despite their millions of dollars in salaries – don’t come close to the fiscal value provided by firefighters.


Seven Unwritten Rules of EMS wth Gary Ludwig

Just about everyone will find that there are the official rules in EMS – and then there are the unwritten rules. They’re often more helpful to know than the stuff you learn in class. For those EMTs or medics who are new on the job and want a jump on these real-world rules, my guest on this show wrote a column for about them. Gary Ludwig has four decades of experience in the fire service. He’s currently chief of the Champaign, Illinois fire department, and he's responded to an...


How to Lead in Today's Volunteer Department with John Sahatjian

Leadership in a volunteer fire department doesn’t work the same way as it does in a career department. For starters, the officer positions may rotate, as frequently as every year. That means it can be tough to develop a consistent leadership culture. My guest today says there’s also been a change in attitudes facing those leaders, and it’s not a good one. John Sahatjian has been in the fire service for 17 years. He’s the Fire Chief at the South Wall Fire Rescue Company, Fire District #3 in...


Transitional Attacks Are Like a Bunt with Ray McCormack

The transitional attack. Some firefighters swear by it, some swear at it. The NFPA says it’s a way to soften the target. Does it help, or does it have the potential to make firefighting harder? My guest today says a transitional attack is like a bunt in baseball. Ray McCormack is a 30-year veteran and a lieutenant with FDNY. He publishes Urban Firefighter Magazine. He delivered the keynote address at FDIC in 2009.


Everyone Wants to Work for This Department with Scott Thompson

My guest today has a new book, titled The Functional Fire Company -- Positioning Small Groups for Success & Survival. It’s intended to explain how to develop a culture of learning and training in your department. It’s working: his department has a record of retaining motivated firefighters, even though neighboring departments pay more. Some firefighters even take a pay cut to join his agency. Scott Thompson is a 35-year veteran of the fire service and chief of The Colony, Texas Fire...


Should You Try Acupuncture? with Dr. Nikki Kelly

What do you know about acupuncture? Yeah, it involves needles. But do you know what it can do for you? Here’s one benefit: it can be used to treat PTSD. It’s also helped relieve depression, chronic fatigue, joint pain, and low back pain, and a lot of others. Plus, it works without drugs.That’s why my guest today says it’s perfect for firefighters, who may suffer from physical or mental issues. Dr. Nikki Kelly is a former firefighter. She was an engineer/EMT for the Tavares, Florida Fire...


Painkiller Addiction Risk with Mark Lamplugh, Jr.

If you’re injured on the job, you’ll likely be prescribed an opioid pain medication. They’re a double -edged sword: it can be tough to get enough, even when you really need them. But you might be surprised how quickly you can become addicted to them if you do get what you want. And believe me, doctors are terrified of losing their licenses these days. That means they’ll cut you off in a hurry. What can you do if you become addicted? Here to discuss that is Mark Lamplugh. Jr. Mark is the...


A Rookie's Guide to Surviving the Firehouse with Mauro Porcelli

If you’re a probie or you want to be, listen up. This show’s guest, Mauro Porcelli, has written a new book titled “Surviving the Firehouse.” It’s a guide to life as a firefighter for newbies, and it’s full of real-world tips and advice. Mauro retired from the Orlando Florida fire department with twenty-five years of fire service experience. He started his career with Marion County Fire/Rescue in 1988. At 23, he was the youngest, highest ranking professional fire officer in Florida, holding...


Five Health Habits to Prolong Your Career with Aaron Zamzow

Habits can improve your health...and bad ones can screw it up. That’s why building healthy habits is so important for firefighters. This isn’t just some trendy idea. This stuff will prolong your career, and your life. Back with us again today is Aaron Zamzow, and he has five of them for us. Aaron is the owner of Fire Rescue Fitness, a company that creates workout programs and fitness articles that focus on getting Fire Rescue Athletes "fit for duty."


How to Get Quicker Knockdowns with Paul Shapiro

How fast do you get a knockdown on an average fire? Our guest on this show says you should see the effects in 30 seconds. If you don’t, he says, you’re not flowing enough water. Paul Shapiro is a back to talk about overwhelming a fire with massive water. Paul’s been involved with the fire service since 1981. He was an engineer with Las Vegas, Nevada Fire and Rescue for 28 years until he retired. He is a certified fire instructor III for Nevada and has served on the faculty of many fire...


Training vs Working Out with Matt Page

Firefighters both train and work out. Though they share some elements in common, they’re two different disciplines. This show's guest says it’s important to do both well. Matt Page is an assistant chief with the Alpine Fire Department in Louisiana. He’s also a captain at the Lincoln Parish Fire Department.