Friday, August 30, 2013

Inclimate Weather

See the pretty white cloud. See the cloud grow and get very tall. See the cloud slow and the sky get dark.

See it rain. See the wind blow and the trees bend.

See the city fall apart.

Power line down calls were stacked 10 deep in dispatch. 

The dept. PIO wades to a stuck vehicle to check for possible
subjects trapped. This one was empty. He happened to be on
phone with the media while doing it. Talk about dual - role!

Street flooding occurred at numerous locations. The cell slowed
 as it passed over the North end of the city, pumps and storm 
drains couldn't keep up. 

The head sticking out of the side of the engine belongs to a kid
on his way home. The flooding would cause him to walk a mile 
or so out of his way, so E6 offered him a lift as they were passing
by. It's all about customer service.

  Flooding occurred in several residential neighborhoods. Too 
much water, too little time.

Crews work to shore up an irrigation canal that had overflowed.

Sand bags. 'Nuff said.

The cell parked over the city for about an hour or so. It doesn't take a lot of adverse weather to send us dirt people into crisis mode, a storm such as this jams the city up very nicely.

I spoke with one captain who told me his unit ran 17 calls in 90 minutes. Most were self resolving or were able to be stabilized until utilities or public works could come and handle it, still 17 in 90 - that's busy.

The organization displayed some creativity in handling the situation. Day captains were used to staff a reserve unit, several staff officers were assigned to respond to calls, investigate and advise if an engine response was required. These actions freed up units for other calls. Well played.

We just don't get much rain, 10.22 inches per year at fire sta. #3 to be exact. According to the local rag, we received around .16 of an inch yesterday afternoon. I don't know where that reporting station was, likely at Sta. #3 or at the airport. Neither of those reporting stations are where the brunt of the storm hit, so I suspect we received much more. 

Regardless, it was chaotic for a while in the North-end. My peeps were busy indeed.

Thanks for reading,


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