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Thursday, July 28, 2011

Firefighters "Rehab" Policy Under Heat Stress Watch

MEDIA CONTACT: Mark E. Brady, Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930

Firefighters are accustomed to operating in "hot" conditions.  However, when air temperatures and quality become dangerous and unhealthy, injuries and illnesses to emergency personnel become likely and preventative measure are required.  For example, a firefighter was admitted to a local hospital on Monday, July 25, suffering a heat related illness after battling a Hyattsville house fire

Firefighters battled a fire in a vacant home on Wednesday morning in Boulevard Heights. At about 11:45 am Fire/EMS units were alerted to a house fire in the 4200 block of Byers Street and arrived to find a 2-story structure with fire showing from a basement with extension into the 1st floor. The cause of the fire is under investigations and fire loss estimates are still being considered.

In addition to battling the fire, firefighters also had to deal with “pack-rat” conditions throughout the house. There were about 30 firefighters and paramedics on the scene. It required about 15 minutes to extinguish the fire. The Fire/EMS Department is currently operating under a “Heat Stress Watch” in which heat related illnesses to firefighters are possible. To prevent against the illness and injuries firefighters are required to go through a “rehab” area after battling a fire or other strenuous activity. During rehab firefighters rehydrate themselves and have vital signs monitored by paramedics. Once the cooling process is complete and vital signs are within normal limits, firefighters are cleared to perform additional duty.

The Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department issues a heat stress watch or heat stress warning when heat conditions present a safety hazard to personnel involved in emergency operations.

Incident Commanders and Unit Officers are encouraged to take appropriate steps to monitor and protect their crews during these conditions. The Fire/EMS Department takes the safety and wellness of our personnel very seriously. Constant reminders are broadcast over the radio system during the course of the day while operating under heat stress watches and warnings.

Members of the Fire/EMS Department take these steps to stay healthy.

Prevention Measures

• Pre-Incident hydration – Drink 8 oz of water every hour during your shift, not to exceed more than 12 quarts of fluid over a 24 hour period

• Establish work/rest periods, share workloads and alter the pace of work based on conditions

• Provide ventilation and good air movement in work areas

• Utilize the “buddy” system and emergency incident rehabilitation to prevent heat stress injuries

Emergency Incident Rehabilitation

• Crews remain intact and accountable to the Rehab Officer

• Safe and cool area to rest, rehydrate/eat, and replenish SCBA bottles and other equipment

• Relief from PPE and heat conditions in the work environment for 20 minutes

• Drink 12 to 32 oz of water or sports drink during rehab sessions and during a 2 hour period post incident

Emergency Incident Rehabilitation Triage Criteria

• Employees/members with the following conditions are referred for EMS treatment/transport:

o Injury, chest pain, SOB, severe fatigue, nausea, altered mental status

o Heart Rate >120 (> 10 minutes)

o Temperature >100.4 F (> 10 minutes)

o Blood Pressure – Systolic >200 or <90, Diastolic >110 (> 10 minutes)

o CO-Hg – Non-smokers >5%, Smokers >10% or symptomatic

• All other personnel are cleared for incident rehabilitation

Emergency Incident Rehabilitation Discharge Criteria

• Heart Rate <100

• Temperature <99.5 F

• Blood Pressure – Systolic between 100 and 160, Diastolic <90

• CO-Hg – Non-smokers <5%, Smokers <10% and asymptomatic

By firefighters taking necessary precautions and following prescribed guidelines before, during and after periods of intense work in high heat conditions is keeping Safety First to Ensure Everyone Goes Home.






Fire Safety and Injury Prevention Efforts to Join National Night Out


The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) and the Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department (PGFD) are pleased to announce a new partnership with the National Association of Town Watch (NATW), which administers National Night Out (NNO). USFA and PGFD are working with NATW to enhance NNO events and activities by reaching out to fire and emergency medical service (EMS) personnel across the country. The goal is to promote fire and life safety prevention and education initiatives for families and communities while partnering with law enforcement.

National Night Out is Tuesday, August 2, 2011 and it is projected to reach 37 million people in 15,000 communities in all 50 states, U.S. territories, Canada, and military bases throughout the U.S. and around the world. Fire departments and EMS can help expand community partnerships by participating in NNO events and activities to share fire and life safety prevention information.

For more information on NNO, visit http://www.nationalnightout.org/.

Prince George’s County Firefighters, EMT’s and Paramedics will join our public safety partners during the National Night Out to promote fire safety and injury prevention. Prince George’s County Fire Chief Marc Bashoor will be joined by career, volunteer and civilian members of the Fire/EMS Department to visit as many National Night Out events as possible.

National Night Out Events

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Hyattsville/College Park area

Location: 3933 Bladensburg Rd (Colmar Manor)
Time: 1800-2030 hours

Location: 3820 40th Ave (Cottage City)
Time: 1800-2000 hours

Location: Nature Center 4701 31st St (Mount Rainier)
Time: 1800-2100 hours

Location: North Brentwood Rec. 4012 Webster St (North Brentwood)
Time: 1800-2030 hours

Location: Brentwood Town Hall (Brentwood)
Time: 1800-2030 hours

Location: Lewisdale Elementary School (Lewisdale)
Time: 1800-2100 hours

Location: Prince George's Plaza
Time: 1800-2000 hours

Location: Woodlawn/Beacon Heights/Glenridge Associations (Woodlawn Community Center) Greenvale Parkway & 69th Place
Time: 1830-2000 hours

Location: Eastpine/Templeton Knolls/Riverdale Hills/Riverdale Heights/Crestwood (St. John’s Lutheran Church) 5820 Riverdale Road
Time: 1830-2000 hours

Location: All of New Carrollton: Beckett Field 8511 Legation Road
Time: 1830-2000 hours

Location: (College Park Neighborhood Watch) College Park: Airport Central City-Wide Event
Time: 1900-2100 hours

Location: Berwyn Park 49th & Patuxent Ave
Time: 1800-2000 hours

Location: College Park Community Center 5051 Pierce Ave (Lakeland)
Time: 1830-2030 hours

Location: College Park Woods (CPW Neighborhood Park) St. Andrews Place
Time: 1800-2000 hours

Location: 6799 Cathedral Avenue Lanham, MD (Goodluck Estates Park)
Time: 1730-2030 hours

Bowie/Upper Marlboro/Lanham area

Location: 5010 Brown Station Road Upper Marlboro, MD (District II/Upper Marlboro)
Time: 1730-2030 hours

Location: Squire and Queens Way (Westphalia Neighborhood Park)
Time: 1700-2000 hours

Location: 10500 Campus Way South (Kettering)
Time: 1800-1930 hours

Location: Campus Way South (Campus Way South Townhouses)
Time: 1900-2030 hours

Location: 12600 Fairwood Parkway Bowie (The Sycamore Club)
Time: 1900-2100 hours

Location: Allen Pond (City of Bowie)
Time: 1800-2000 hours

Location: Cipriano Springs/Lost Springs Way (Cipriano Springs Condominium Association)
Time: 1800-2100 hours

Location: Baltimore Lane/Elm Street (Lincoln Vista and Glenwood Park HOA)
Time: 1800-2000 hours

Landover/Temple Hills/Seat Pleasant area

Location: 2411 Pinebrook Avenue (Kentland Community Center)
Time: 1700-2000 hrs.

Location: 5720 Addison Road (Seat Pleasant Activity Center)
Time: 1800-2000 hrs.

Location: 75th Avenue (Overland Gardens Apartments)
Time: TBD

Location: 1 Capitol Heights Boulevard (Town of Capitol Heights)
Time: TBD

Location: 7300 Walker Mill Road (Millwood-Waterford)
Time: 1800-2000 hrs.

Location: 7200 block of Walker Mill Road (Fairfield Knolls)
Time: 1800-2000 hrs.

Location: 6900 Block Walker Mill Road (Capitol Courts Apartments)
Time: 1900-2100 hrs.

Location: Woods at Addison Apartments
Time: 1900-2100 hrs.

Location: 2004 Concord Lane (Concord Elementary School)
Time: 1800-2000 hrs.

Location: 1207 Addison Road (Saint Paul Senior Living)
Time: 1830-2030

Location: 3000 Victory Lane (Windsor Crossing)
Time: 1700-2000 hrs

Location: 2100 block Brooks Drive (Oakcrest Towers Apartments)
Time: 1700-2000 hrs.

Location: 2200 District Heights Parkway (District Heights Elementary School)
Time: 1700-2000 hrs.

Location: 1600 Forest Park Drive (Community Pool) UNCONFIRMED
Time: TBD

Oxon Hill/Fort Washington/Camp Springs area

Location: 4909 Brinkley Road Camp Springs Civic Association (Thurgood Marshall Middle School)
Time: 1900-2100 hrs.

Location: 6311 Randolph Road Skyline Civic Association (Skyline Elementary School)
Time: 1900-2100 hrs.

Location: 3300 Block Huntley Square Drive (Huntley Square Homeowners Association)
Time: 1900-2100 hrs.

Location: 2300 block Iverson Street (Hillcrest Shopping Center)
Time: 1900-2100 hrs.

1101 Aragona Blvd (Potomac Knolls Community Center)
Time: 1900-2100 hrs.

Location: 16111 Livingston Road, Accokeek Fire House (Greater Accokeek Civic Association)
Time: 1900-2100 hrs.

Location: 713 Calvert Lane & 13211 Lafont Drive (Captains Cove Association)
Time: 1900-2100 hrs.

Clinton area

Police Station
6707 Groveton Drive

Clinton, MD 20735
Time: 1700-2030 hours

Beltsville/Laurel

Police Station
4321 Sellman Road

Beltsville, MD 20704
Time: 1800-2000 hours

Fire/EMS Department and Community Walk a Path to Greatness

Prince George’s County Fire Chief Marc S. Bashoor and Firefighter/Medics from the 3rd Battalion recently joined with members of the Temple Hills and Hillcrest Heights area on a cook-out and walk. On Wednesday, July 27, 2011, Chief Bashoor and staff attended the community event at the invitation of Reverend Orlando J. Bego, Pastor, Centerpoint Church. The Fire/EMS Department provided an area with community outreach materials including smoke alarms, fire safety and injury prevention materials.

Participants gathered in the 3000 block of Saint Claire Drive in Temple Hills for a cook-out and then walked together throughout the community.

Fire Chief Bashoor enjoyed the interaction with members of the community and the opportunity to discuss various matters on a personal level. He stated, “Our participation with members of the community is demonstrating our concern for their safety and well being from the perils of fire, illness and injury. It is these grass roots community events that are the path to greatness in Prince George’s County.”


Pastor Bego (orange shirt) with Fire Chief Bashoor with personnel from the 3rd Battalion. (photo by Teresa Crisman)

Fire Chief Bashoor with Pastor Bego. (photo by Teresa Crisman)

Chief Bashoor takes a moment with a young member of the community during the walk as Major Tyrone Forby looks on. (photo by Damu McBride)