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Thursday, October 1, 2015
Due to the uncertainty of the weather forecast for flooding rains this weekend, the Purcellville Volunteer Fire Company and Purcellville Volunteer Rescue Squad have decided to error on the side of caution and CANCEL its Open House event at the Purcellville Public Safety Center on Sunday, October 4, 2015, from 11am – 3pm. There is no reschedule date planned at this time.
Thursday, October 1, 2015
Today marks the beginning of Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM) which is a pattern of behavior which involves violence or other abuse by one person against another in a domestic setting, such as in marriage or cohabitation. Domestic violence can take place in heterosexual or same-sex relationships, and sometimes also involves violence against children in the family. Domestic violence includes physical, verbal, emotional, economic and sexual abuse. We know that 1 in 4 women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime. We know that young people between the ages of 16-24 experience domestic violence at the highest rates. We know that DC police receive a domestic violence related call every 17 minutes. But, we also know that domestic violence can be prevented. As the scope of the problem has become better understood, domestic violence is now acknowledged as a significant legal and public health issue, not only a private family problem. There are laws in every state that make domestic violence illegal. There is also federal funding available in all states to provide shelter and services for victims of domestic violence.For information about Domestic Violence Awareness Month, domestic violence and other community resources, call the Loudoun County Victim Witness Program at 703-777-0417 or go to www.loudoun.gov/oca or www.ncadv.org.
The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors has officially proclaimed October 2015 as Fire Prevention Month in Loudoun County.According to data from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), approximately three of five, or 60% of reported home fire deaths from 2007-2011 resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms. In line with this year’s safety theme, the Loudoun County Fire and Rescue System joins NFPA to remind residents to “Hear the Beep, Where you Sleep: Every bedroom needs a working smoke alarm!” Firefighters and safety advocates will focus on the importance of having adequate numbers of functional smoke alarms in your home and testing smoke alarms monthly. Critical safety tips regarding smoke alarms:• Install smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of your home.• Test all smoke alarms at least once a month. Press the test button to be sure the alarm is working. If an alarm “chirps”, warning the battery is low, replace the battery right away.• Clean dust, dirt, and any debris that might have accumulated in small openings and screens covering the smoke alarm’s sensors. Never paint smoke alarms, it clogs their sensors, voids the warranty and could result in a false alarm or no response in an emergency.• Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old or sooner if not working properly.“Smoke alarms are a huge priority for our department, says Chief Fire Marshal Linda Hale. “The goal of our Put-A-Finger-On-It smoke alarm program is to ensure every resident of Loudoun County has adequate and functional smoke alarms in their home. By communicating the importance of smoke alarms and encouraging the public to attend our fire prevention month events, we hope to prevent residents from suffering a damaging lesson due to a fire in their home."In 2014, Loudoun County Fire and Rescue personnel visited 15,071 homes, performed 350 home safety inspections, and installed 410 smoke alarms for Loudoun County residents. Through the Put-A-Finger-On-It smoke alarm program residents can receive a free home fire safety inspection and are eligible to receive free smoke alarms, installed at no cost. For information visit www.loudoun.gov/smokealarms or call our hotline 703-737-8093.
Friday, September 25, 2015
People watching the Volunteer and Career firefighters from Purcellville pitch together to conduct the annual testing of all of Station 602's fire hoses, might think of the strong American tradition of communal work. It was in some ways reminiscent of a barn raining where friends and neighbors come together to accomplish what one person can't. As they say, many hands make lighter work.In this instance, fourteen Volunteer firefighters under the direction of Chief Bob Dryden, were joined by the five 'B' shift Career firefighters under Capt Kelly Williams for some serious manual labor on Thursday 24 September. It involved 11,350 feet (or nearly 38 football fields) of hose. These nineteen men and women worked from 730AM - 3PM helping a contractor lay out the hoses, charge them to the manufacture's suggested water pressure, and then closely look at each for mildew, rot, cuts, burns, and abrasions. All of this was to verify that no delamination or separation was seen, which then allowed the contractor to certify them in compliance with a National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standard. This standard helps insure that our equipment is ready to fight fires, and also to protect the lives and property of those in peril, including firefighters themselves. And just as before, you couldn't tell who was a volunteer and who was paid staff as everyone pitched in to drain, roll and repack the hoses on to the apparatus. Remarkable teamwork and teambuilding all around.
Probationary Fire Fighter Warren Van Der
Merwe with some of the hoses
Capt Kelly Williams Instructing
Probationary Fire Fighter Lindsey
Zuckerman how to rack the hoses
Published in the PURCELLVILLE GAZETTE ⋅ September 12, 2015 Edition By Bill EgglestonSchool already? Where did the summer go? The August count of calls run was 59. Not an especially busy month for volunteer firefighting, which is very good. However, it was a busy training month. We had three members complete the State Emergency Vehicle Operators class, which certifies them as safe to drive our apparatus. This equipment can weigh as much as 80,000 lbs, so it is a difficult and important skill to master. Another three members completed the four-week Hazardous Materials Operations course, which is a foundational skill for all of firefighting. It teaches safety and incident management whenever there is risk from such hazardous materials as chemicals, fertilizers, radioactive material, flammable and combustible items, low-level nuclear waste, fuels and explosives.Also in August, several from our company completed an always timely and relevant rural water supply course. A large part of our area of responsibility (our first due) is not served by water hydrants which makes fire suppression an even greater challenge. Rural water supply relates to moving water into non-hydranted areas after first choosing a fill site like a stream, pond or other source, setting up hard suction/strainers, and then operating a dump site close to the fire ground. These are skills and training that we must constantly practice and remain proficient. Too many of our rural neighbors count on this protection to do otherwise.We also had members participate in elevator and escalator training at the Metro training facility at New Carrollton, MD. They learned about various types of elevators and escalators and then about train cars and tunnel egress procedures. There were simulated entrapments, how to handle emergency power-off overrides, and other critical skills. There are elevators in our first due area, but no escalators yet. However, the Loudoun County Combined Fire Rescue System is being proactive and preparing for Metro coming out to Loudoun. When that happens, we will be ready for emergencies on trains and at stations.There was other training of course, but now I’m going to kick off a recurring vignette to spotlight some of our members. I hope it will give the reader a sense of the people who unselfishly volunteer their time working to protect us all. The first member is an accomplished cyclist who cut an impressive path through firefighter qualification and training. His name is John Carney, and he and his wife have lived in Purcellville since 2003.His love of cycling is what first brought him here. After biking from Sterling on the W&OD trail, he stopped at the Purcellville Train Station to take in and admire our small town ambiance and decided on the spot that he needed to live here. Within six months he moved and hasn’t looked back since. He doesn’t look back in other areas, either. Just this summer, for example, he rode in the Firefighter 50 near Westminster, MD and before that in the Police Unity Tour from New Jersey to D.C. These fundraisers highlight his love of bicycling and service to others.Becoming a firefighter was full speed ahead as well. He joined PVFC in August of 2012 after first attending an open house like our upcoming one on October 4. After a thorough physical, CPR, HazMat, and meeting other pre-requisites, he entered the county five-month fire school, graduating in January 2014. Next was another five months training to become an EMT, graduating in March of 2015. He also took Emergency Vehicle Operator training this summer, which he is still finising.Although applicants don’t pay for any of this training, why did he do it? Is it because he can take a 12 hour shift once every six nights with Captain Scott Maple and the rest of Crew 6? Or because he can also take one 12 hour shift per month with the Purcellville Volunteer Rescue Squad? No, he says he does it for all the positive energy he gets, the opportunity to meet new friends, and the rewards that come from being involved in a great community like Purcellville. All in all, he usually volunteers around 60 hours a month, which is a great deal for local residents and taxpayers. Pretty amazing.For those who want to meet John and other members and perhaps find out how to become a firefighter, the next open house is October 4th from 11am to 3pm. Everyone is invited to come see our firefighting apparatus, take a tour of ambulances, police cars, and specialty equipment, plus enjoy kids activities, demonstrations, food and refreshments.Our new tower cab from Piece Manufacturing continues to progress. The torque box and body were mounted on the chassis and installation of wiring, plumbing, shelving, trim and other components is well underway. We’re anxiously looking forward to delivery this fall
Monday, September 14, 2015
Today, the PVFC participated in the Stephan L. Mace golf tournament, recognizing the Army Specialist who gave the last full measure of devotion to his country. On behalf of the PFVC family we thank all of those who have served, who will serve and who sacrificed their lives so we could be free.
Tuesday, September 8, 2015
On Wednesday 2 Sept, 2015, we were honored to play host to guide dog puppies in training at our station. Eight dogs associated with Shenandoah Region - Guiding Eyes for the Blind with their fostering families, gained familiarity and a calming experience by walking around our large firefighting apparatus. They also met members dressed in full personal protective equipment, all of which is intended to make the dogs accumulated to a scene that we hope they will never encounter.
Saturday, September 5, 2015
Officers from the Company visited the
factory this weekend for the Post Paint inspection of the NEW ladder Truck for
the PFVC. Progress is moving forward.
Thursday, September 3, 2015
Here’s a Public Service Announcement that members of PVFC recorded last winter to quit smoking. It has now been published to YouTube on behalf of the National Volunteer Fire Council. While its primary audience is Firefighters, it might have some applicability for others. www.youtube.com/watch
Monday, August 31, 2015
The final 2015 Sundaes-on-Saturday ice cream social was held on 29 August. The large crowd was happy to enjoy the free ice cream, meet the volunteer firefighters, and tour the equipment. It was a rousing success and our way of saying thanks.
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