Friday, December 26, 2014

Lakeside Fire Promotes Two

Lakeside, CA -

The Lakeside Fire District recently promoted two veteran employees. In a brief ceremony at the December 9, 2014, fire board meeting, Fire Chief Andy Parr presented new badges to Chris Downing and Jon Jordan.

Downing, a 15-year district veteran was promoted from the position of Engineer to Captain. Captain Downing is involved in many aspects of district operation including Reserve Firefighter shift coordinator, small engine repair and service, Personal Protective Equipment, and training. Chris is assigned to Fire Station 3 on A-division.

Firefighter-Paramedic Jordan, a 10-year employee, will assume the position of Engineer at Engine 1 on C-Division.  Jon also keeps very busy as a member of both the Apparatus and EMS committees. He also has served as a shift training medic and helped with the new tablet-based engine company fire inspection program.

Fire department promotions are based on a highly competitive testing process and are the result of hard work and preparation.

We wish both of these firefighters all the best as they assume their new responsibilities.

Post by: Captain Scott Culkin, Lakeside Fire District.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Lakeside and El Cajon Fire Fighters Team-Up for Christmas

Lakeside, CA -

 Each year the Lakeside and El Cajon Fire Fighter Associations adopt a family for Christmas. Firefighters contact organizations in their respective areas and with the assistance of the San Diego Burn Institute identify a family in need.  This year Lakeside and El Cajon teamed-up to support a family that was recommended to us from the Burn Institute who lives in Lakeside.  Both Associations collected monetary donations from their member firefighters and administrative staffs and went shopping to fill out the families Christmas lists.  Both Departments were able to pull together and make the family's Christmas special.

Lakeside Firefighter/Paramedic Jose Corona is responsible for making the contacts for the Lakeside Fire Fighters' Association and interviewing the families.  This year he was contacted by Steve Cameron from El Cajon Fire Fighters and the two decided to join together to help this family who had a daughter who is a burn survivor.  The family was beyond grateful and once again this worthwhile program was a success.

Photos by: Engineer Matt Buzzell and Firefighter/Paramedic Steve Cameron

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Lakeside Fire Captain Mark Grow Retires

Lakeside, CA. -

After more than three decades of service, veteran Lakeside Fire Captain Mark Grow has retired. Hired in 1981, Mark served as one of a handful of firefighter-paramedics staffing the district advanced life support ambulance in the, then, relatively new paramedic service. Widely acknowledged as one of the best paramedics in our county, Mark was a mentor to several generations of Lakeside paramedics and was instrumental in solidifying our district's continuing reputation as a premier paramedic service provider in the region.

Encouraged by his mother, Mark took an early interest in the fire service, joining the Redondo Beach Fire Explorers program around 1972. After moving to unincorporated El Cajon (Lakeside Fire District) in 1974, He promptly joined the Santee Fire Department Explorer program. Upon graduating high school, Mark was hired under a federal program (CETA) by the Bostonia Fire Protection District where he served until 1978 when his position was eliminated. He continued to serve as a volunteer firefighter at both the Bostonia and Crest fire districts and worked as an EMT for Hartson's ambulance in San Diego. Hartson's selected Mark to attend paramedic training in 1979. Upon graduation from paramedic training, He worked in the Lemon Grove - Spring Valley area. With considerable fire and paramedic experience under his belt, Lakeside Fire offered Mark a position in 1981.

During his tenure, Mark was known for many accomplishments. Perhaps his most lasting legacy will be in the area of firefighter training. Using his considerable computer and graphics skills, Mark developed Lakeside's comprehensive, three-year firefighter step training program from the ground up. This excellent material serves as the foundation for our training program to this day.

One of Mark's most valuable (and visible) contributions is this Information Blog. Early on, Mark recognized the value of Social Media in informing our citizens of the activities of their fire district. The social media platform that he developed included our Information Blog, Facebook page, and coordinated Twitter feed. Because of Mark's hard work and frequent (daily) attention, Lakeside's social media effort has become a model program for the fire service nationwide.

Mark plans to stay busy in retirement and looks forward to spending time with his wife Sherry and children Kyle and Paige.

On behalf of the Lakeside Fire family, we wish Mark all the best for a long and happy retirement.

Post by: Captain Scott Culkin, Lakeside Fire District

Monday, December 22, 2014

Special Heroes (San Diego Down Syndrome. Org) 2nd Annual Christmas Event

 Lakeside, CA -

San Diego Down Syndrome hosted their second annual Christmas event at Funbelievable in Lakeside Saturday, December 20, 2014. evening.  This is one of the fundraisers the organization does and last year this event was sold out as it was again this year.  Families where able to bring there kids to have a fun evening hanging out with Lakeside Firefighters, SDSO, visit a petting zoo, play inside on the play structure, and most importantly they all got to see Santa.  Engine 2 from the River Park Fire Station was fortunate to be able to be a part of the event this year.  The kids had a great time climbing in the fire engine, handling the equipment, and be able to talk to firefighters.  Engine 2 had to leave early to go on a call but it sounded like the event was a success.

A junior firefighter.

FF-PM Danny Leetch helps with some nozzle training.

Photos by: Rob Riingen Photography 
Post By: Engineer Matt Buzzell

Lakeside Rescue Vehicle Accident

Lakeside, CA -

Late on the evening of December 20, 2014, Lakeside firefighters were dispatched to a vehicle accident with entrapment on Lake Jennings Park Rd near Jack Oak Rd.  Rescue 3 from the nearby Lake Jennings Fire Station was the first unit on scene reporting a full-size pickup on its side with one person trapped. Additional fire units arrived and personnel assisted with vehicle stabilization and patient extrication. The Rescue 3 crew performed a roof flap evolution utilizing hydraulic cutting and spreading tools. Once extricated, Santee Medic 4 transported the patient to a local hospital. The CHP is investigating the accident.

Units at scene were Rescue 3, Engine 2, and Division Chief 4106 (Lakeside) and Medic 4 (Santee). Also assisting were San Diego Sheriff and CHP.

Pictures submitted by: Captain John Hisaw
Story By: Engineer Matt Buzzell

Stabilization struts and roof flap were utilized.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Plumbing Repairs Starts Structure Fire in Johnstown

Lakeside, CA -

On December 11, 2014, at 2:40 p.m., the Heartland Communications Center received an emergency phone call from a resident in the 8500 block of Cordial Rd. The caller stated that a wall was on fire in the home after some plumbing repairs had been undertaken. The initial response sent four structural engines, one truck company, an ALS medic unit, and two chief officers to the afternoon fire.

With the arrival of Engine 3 (Lake Jennings Fire Station), firefighters discovered a home quickly filling with smoke. They determined that the fire had moved up the wall and was now burning in the attic. Crews started the tedious job of quickly removing dry wall to get to the underlying fire. Crews also accessed the attic area to cutoff the progression of the fire.

The fire was brought under control in 17 minutes and did extensive damage to two rooms. Fortunately, the occupants had vacated the structure without injury.

A total of 10 Lakeside firefighters responded to the incident assisted by units from Heartland Fire & Rescue, Alpine Fire Protection District, and the Santee Fire Department. The Lakeside Logistics Volunteer Group responded to the incident and provided essential support to the crews.

Mark Grow, Social Media Coordinator, Lakeside Fire Protection District