Jul 30

36th Annual Brew Run Information

The 36th annual Brew Run is scheduled for Saturday August 9th.  The course consists of a challenging 5.2 mile run through Brewster Massachusetts which is one of Cape Cod’s most scenic communities. This extremely popular and family friendly race which benefits the Brewster Fire/Rescue Association begins at 4:00 p.m. at the Woodshed Pub on historic Route 6A (Main Street) and circles through the residential streets of this beautiful bayside community finishing a short walk from post race refreshments and festivities.

 

Runners may sign up on line by visiting coolrunning.com or by visiting Brewster Fire Headquarters at 1657 Main Street for an application Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Jul 21

Hurricane Preparedness Press Release

MEMA remindresidents of the Commonwealth of the importance of being prepared for tropical storms and hurricanes.  Tropical Storm Irene in 2011, Hurricane Sandy in 2012, and Hurricane Arthur in 2014 are powerful reminders that Massachusetts residents and visitors must prepare for the next hurricane or tropical storm.  Indeed, the Commonwealth has been hit hard in recent decades by hurricanes and tropical storms.  In 1991, Hurricane Bob, a Category 2 Hurricane with winds between 91 and 110 mph, caused almost $1 billion in damage.  More recently, in 2011, Tropical Storm Irene caused devastating flooding in Central and Western Massachusetts.

Earlier this month, Governor Patrick proclaimed the month of July as Hurricane Preparedness Month.  The Governor’s proclamation can be found at: http://www.mass.gov/eopss/docs/mema/hurricane-preparedness-month-july-2014.pdf. Read the rest of this entry »

Jul 15

Brewster Fire Department Participates in Brewster Conservation Day

On Saturday July 12 the Brewster Fire Department participated in the Towns annual Conservation Day.  During the event many Town Departments, Committees, and outside agencies set up displays, distributed literature, conducted demonstrations related to their organizations ongoing conservation efforts while providing quality information on the vital roles their respective groups play in enhancing our community’s daily life environment.

Members of the fire department displayed several new pieces of emergency medical equipment and a primary response engine with its associated tools. In addition, personnel also distributed fire prevention literature, weather safety tips, fire helmets, file of life information, and coloring books for our younger supporters.  The fire department would like to thank the Natural Resources Department for sponsoring another great Conservation Day and for giving us the opportunity to participate!

Jul 08

Brewster Fire Department Initiates Biking Ambassador Program

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During the July 4th weekend the Brewster Fire Department initiated its new “Biking Ambassador” program.  With the significant increase in visitors to the community during the summer months and in support of our residents who regularly use the rail trail for exercising and pleasure the fire department developed this program to ensure those utilizing the path are doing so in a safe and considerate manner. On select weekends during July and August fire department personnel will be riding department issued bicycles on the bike path within Brewster to spread the word about general bicycle safety, helmet use, and the inherent hazards specific to the path such as intersection safety and proper passing rules. In addition, these firefighters will be available to assist those individuals enjoying the path with directions, providing community based information, and responding to medical calls within Town and on the bike trail. Brewster Fire Chief Robert Moran said, “This is a great opportunity for the department to be proactive in supporting bike safety on the rail trail while at the same time interacting with the numerous visitors and residents of our community. Remember, bike safely and smartly! We look forward to seeing you”.

Jul 08

Brewster Firefighters Experience Busy 4th of July Weekend

Brewster firefighters responded to 52 requests for service during this past weekend.  Included in these “runs” were three line box responses to reported structure fires in the Town of Orleans and the Town of Harwich and a life-threatening bike accident on the Cape Cod Rail Trail that resulted in serious traumatic injuries to the bicyclist.  Additionally, the high winds and heavy rain from Tropical Storm Arthur triggered a number of calls for power lines and trees down throughout Town including several that caused isolated power outages.

 

The department also recorded two water rescue responses on Sunday July 6.  The first occurred at 2:45 p.m. on Flax Pond in Nickerson State Park when a report of two children in a raft who were unable to return to shore was received by Barnstable County Dispatch.  Brewster firefighters responded with the Zodiac boat, an ambulance, and an engine to the location.  Due to additional manpower needs the Orleans Fire Department also responded with an engine at the request of the incident commander. Upon arrival fire department personnel were advised that the children had been helped to shore by bystanders and all units were returned to service.

 

The second water rescue occurred in the area of Wing Island/Paines Creek at approximately 3:45 p.m. when Barnstable County Dispatch received a report of an adult male and child being swept out into the bay by strong southwest winds and heavy swells.  Brewster firefighters responded with the Zodiac boat, heavy rescue, and an ambulance to Paines Creek landing. Due to the immediate need to reach and rapidly remove the individuals from this dangerous situation the incident commander also requested the response of boats from the Dennis and Eastham Fire Departments. In addition, noting the severity of the situation Barnstable County Dispatchers proactively notified the Coast Guard to respond and assist with the search prior to the dispatch of fire department units. With all of these resources moving into position to initiate a coordinated search and rescue operation the fire department was notified via dispatch that the two individuals in question had been picked up by a personal watercraft and brought to shore.  Once this information was confirmed all Brewster and mutual aid units were returned and placed back in service.

Jul 01

Brewster Firefighters Renovate Mask Confidence Course

Firefighters must be extremely confident and comfortable when utilizing their personal protective equipment at emergency incidents. Undoubtedly, the single most important piece of this equipment is the self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) which provides firefighters with the breathing air required to operate on the interior of a structure or at other emergency incidents where toxic atmospheres may be present. When firefighters use their SCBA their sight is typically obscured or non-existent and other senses are taken away by the smoke, heat, and noise created by the fire and the ongoing suppression operation. To ensure Brewster firefighters are able to survive in these dangerous environments we use our mask confidence course to simulate potential hazards and proactively train our members in the survival techniques necessary to remove themselves from danger. Some of the safety and survival techniques we teach include wall breaching, moving through confined spaces, radio communications, self-removal from entanglement hazards, issuing mayday messages, and situational awareness.

 

Over the past several weeks Firefighter/Paramedic Matthew Tucker and Firefighter William Kraul completed a project to reconstruct the departments mask confidence course. While Brewster has maintained and supported this in-house training prop for several years these energetic members recognized the course needed renovating and updating. A newly designed program that incorporated a number of new and innovative scenarios was designed and built. This new course is challenging and dynamic and accurately recreates the “real life” hazardous situations that a firefighter may be faced with while operating at a structure fire. Over the past several years our training committee has found the utilization of hands-on training props such as the mask confidence course as instructional tools to be the most beneficial method of preparing our firefighters to operate safely and effectively at emergency incidents. We feel this newly revised, modern course will significantly improve our ability to offer the high quality training our organization is known for while at the same time enhancing firefighter safety and our capacity to provide professional services to the community.  The Brewster Fire Department would like to thank Kraul Enterprises and Breakwater Construction for their donation of the materials used to complete this project.

Jun 24

Tyler Johnson Completes Senior Internship

Brewster resident and Nauset High School senior Tyler Johnson recently completed his senior internship with the Brewster Fire Department. This 9 month internship program sponsored through the regional high school allowed Tyler to get an in depth look at the daily operations of the Brewster Fire Department through his interaction with department employees, supporting the fire prevention bureau, responding to fire and EMS calls as an observer, assisting with daily house work, and interacting with our residents.  During his time at the fire department Tyler and Brewster FF/EMT Michael Herrmann created a software program that allowed us to move our daily ambulance and apparatus check sheets into our mobile computers which significantly improved our efficiency and ability to document these daily reports.  In addition, Tyler also spent several months an Emergency Medical Technician course where he received national certification as an EMT.

Moving forward, Tyler will take his passion for emergency medicine to another level in the next few months.  He has enlisted in the Army as a Health Care Specialist or Army Medic and will be leaving for Boot Camp at Fort Sill Oklahoma in early September.  His ultimate goal is to attend the Army’s Interservice Physicians Assistant Program (IPAP) where upon graduation he will be a certified physicians assistant and Army officer.

Tyler lives in Brewster with his parents Eric and Tina. He has three brothers one who is currently serving as a nuclear engineer in the Navy, one who is an MMA graduate and tugboat Captain, and one who aspires to be a police officer.  Members of the Brewster Fire Department are extremely proud of Tyler’s accomplishments and the opportunity to have mentored him over the past several months.  We wish him the best of luck in all of this future endeavors!

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Jun 24

Brewster Fire Department Responds to Gas Leak

On Sunday June 22 at approximately 4:30 p.m. the Brewster Fire Department responded to a reported outside odor of natural gas in the area of 99 Millstone Road. Upon arrival Engine 239 under the command of Acting Captain Christopher Flavell discovered that a house service to the residence had been struck and by an individual who was installing a fence on the property.  National Grid was requested to expedite their response to the scene due to the severity of the leak and the potential for an explosion and fire.  Fortunately, a representative from National Grid was in the area and responded quickly to mitigate the leak.  With the scene secure Engine 239 returned to headquarters and Millstone Road was reopened. The Brewster Fire Department would like to remind contractors and/or residents who will be digging on any property or street to call Dig-Safe and request a mark out of the utilities in the area to ensure incidents such as the one described above is avoided.

Jun 23

Be Smart… Leave Fireworks to the Professionals

Enjoy supervised professional fireworks displays

Local fire departments supervise fireworks displays all over the Massachusetts. Unfortunately, children and adults continue to set off illegal fireworks that start fires and cause serious injuries to themselves and others.

Fireworks can be deadly

A 45-year old Gloucester woman died in a December 22, 2003 house fire when someone threw fireworks and ignited a Christmas tree in the living room. Three other people were injured. On May 20, 1997, a 26-year old man from Watertown was killed while he was lighting fireworks in a hallway.

A 27-year old Framingham man was killed on July 4, 1993, when backyard fireworks exploded in his face. On July 4, 1992, fireworks fatally injured a 30-year old man on a Fairhaven beach.

All fireworks are illegal in Massachusetts

The possession and use of all fireworks by private citizens is illegal in Massachusetts. This includes Class C fireworks which are sometimes falsely called “safe and sane fireworks.” Class C fireworks include sparklers, party poppers, snappers, firecrackers, spinners, cherry bombs and more.

Sparklers burn at 1800ºF.

It is illegal to transport fireworks into Massachusetts, even if they were purchased legally elsewhere.

Illegal fireworks can be confiscated on the spot.

Do not purchase fireworks through mail-order or online catalogs

The distribution of mail-order catalogs that clearly state that fireworks are illegal in some jurisdictions cannot be prohibited. State and local police regularly confiscate illegal shipments of fireworks into Massachusetts. Many unhappy consumers have lost both their money and the fireworks trying to circumvent the law.

Set a good example for children

Children imitate adults. If you use fireworks, children will copy you, not realizing how very dangerous fireworks are. Sixty percent of fireworks-related burn injuries reported by hospitals to the Office of the State Fire Marshal in 2013 were to children under age 18. Over one-quarter (27%) of the victims were children under age 10.

Fires caused by fireworks

In the past decade (2004-2013) there have been 802 major fire and explosion incidents involving illegal fireworks reported to the Massachusetts Fire Incident Reporting System (MFIRS). The incidents caused 14 civilian injuries, two fire service injuries, and an estimated dollar loss of $2 million, which is high considering most fireworks fires are outdoor brush fires.

• On August 4, 2013 the Chicopee Fire Department responded to a fireworks explosion that severely injured a resident’s hand and also injured his young son. The State Police Bomb Squad was called to dispose of the illegal commercial grade fireworks.

• On July 5, 2013, the Lowell Fire Department responded to a fire in an eight-unit apartment building. Fireworks set off inside a trash can on a porch started the fire.

• On July 7, 2013, the Plymouth Fire Department was dispatched to a fire in a boat house. Someone ignited fireworks near storage supplies that started the fire. Damages were estimated at $4,000.

• On January 9, 2013, Belmont firefighters extinguished two fires in one car; one in the passenger seat and one in the trunk. Smoldering fireworks caused the fires. Damage to the vehicle was estimated at $5,000.

• On July 4, 2013, the Worcester Fire Department responded to a fire in a three-unit apartment building. Fireworks ignited the roof. One firefighter was injured at this fire. Damages were estimated at $12,000.

• On March 20, 2014 the Abington Fire Department responded to a fireworks explosion in an apartment complex. A youth’s hand was amputated and a 31 year old man was injured when consumer grade fireworks exploded inside his apartment.

Burns caused by fireworks

In the past decade (2004-2013), 49 people were treated at Massachusetts emergency rooms for severe burn injuries from fireworks (burns covering 5% of more of the body) according to the Massachusetts Burn Injury Reporting System (M-BIRS). Seventy-two percent of the victims were children and youths under age 25. These victims are scarred for life.

• On March 18, 2013, a 19-year old Dartmouth man severely burned his hand when fireworks exploded inside his home.

• On September 20, 2013, a 38-year old Boston man received severe chemical burns to approximately 30% of his body while experimenting at home with chemicals and fireworks that exploded.

• On August 10, 2013, a 33-year old Beverly man was holding a handful of sparklers. While trying to light one sparkler, he inadvertently ignited them all and burned his hands.

• On June 5, 2013, an 8-year old girl sat on a sparkler that ignited her dress. She received burns to 7% of her body.

 

Summary of Massachusetts Fireworks Law

Jun 13

Brewster Fire Department Responds to Dennisport Structure Fire

On Friday June 6, 2014 at 2:54 a.m. Car 231 (Chief Moran) Engine 233, and Ambulance 243 responded to 58 Center Street in Dennisport on a third alarm structure fire assignment. On arrival at the scene the Dennis Fire Department found a heavy fire condition in the rear and first and second floors of a two-story wood frame multi-family garden apartment style complex. Numerous residents who had jumped from the building to rescue themselves from the fire were found lying in front of the building injured.

Dennis firefighters initiated an aggressive interior attack on the fire and immediately requested mutual aid assistance to the scene. On arrival the Brewster engine company was assigned to assist with overhaul, secondary searches, and extinguishment of hot spots within the structure. In addition, the Brewster ambulance transported a priority patient to Cape Cod Hospital with minor burns and smoke inhalation.

In addition to the Brewster Fire Department the Harwich, Yarmouth, Hyannis, Orleans, Fire Departments also provided mutual aid assistance at the scene and several other departments covered the Dennis stations during the incident.  All Brewster units were placed back in service at 6:30 a.m.

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