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General Category => History => Topic started by: nfd2004 on April 26, 2009, 01:59:43 PM

Title: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on April 26, 2009, 01:59:43 PM
  It was my 21st Birthday and my buddy and I had been celebrating in Manhatten. Around 2-3 AM we made our way over to Eng 82/Lad 31s Qtrs. It was right around the time "Report from Eng 82" had come out. Of course we were a little "under the weather" but the apparatus doors were open and we walked in. We were surprised to see all the rigs in Qtrs because they were so busy at the time. We got invited in and next thing we know is we were sitting having a great 3 AM dinner meal of Pot Roast, Mashed Potatoes etc. Of course we didn"t know anybody there, but they treated us GREAT. As we got into the meal, the bells started to ring. House Watch yelled "Second Alarm ......". My buddy and I wanted to go. But the guys suggested we stay around. Anyway, Housewatch yelled "Engine on the Third, Truck on the Fourth". You guessed it. The fire went to a Fourth Alarm. I rode the Engine and my buddy rode the truck.
  Two intoxicated 21 year old males stumble into the firehouse and the guys ended up treating us like Kings. All they knew about us was that it was my birthday, we were from Connecticut, and wanted to become firemen. We ended up getting home in Bridgeport, Ct about noon time the next day. We were both exhausted, smelled of smoke, and had a Hang over. BUT what a Great 21st Birthday it was.
  Of course things like this could not be done today. But what a Great time to grow up and be a buff (War Years), or on the job.
  I have a few more stories I"d like to share about being a buff in the busy FDNY War Years. As time permits, if it"s okay, I"ll add them to this forum.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 01, 2009, 10:35:06 PM
My father was a fireman in Bridgeport, Ct., so I guess it was kinda in the blood. I had met a guy who worked at Eng 210 on Carlton Ave. in Brooklyn. The guy told me that they shared quarters with Rescue 2 and he invited me down. He told me that the Lt. on the Rescue had a lot of medals and that I would enjoy meeting him. (As it turned out he was referring to Lt Richard Hamilton who was one of the most decorated firefighters at that time. He later wrote the book called: 20,000 Alarms).
  I got on the Train to Grand Central, then took a cab to the firehouse. I had Never seen a New York City Firehouse before, let alone go inside of one. As I approached the red apparatus doors, I could hear bells ringing inside. I knocked on the door and got invited in. I could smell smoke throughout the place. The guys were cleaning off the tools, and as far as I was concerned, "I had died and went to heaven". I was introduced to the guys including Lt Hamilton. Shortly after Lt Hamilton went upstairs while the other guys continue to clean the tools.
  The bells kept coming in, and I had No Idea of what was going on. Then I hear "Engine and Rescue - Get out". I went to step aside and one of the guys told me to climb into the back of the rig. I couldn't"t believe that I was riding Rescue 2 of Brooklyn, NY. It was "The Major Leagues of Fire Fighting". I was probadly about 17 years old and this was about 1967 - 1968. (Nobody knew it, but that was just about the beginning of the Busy War Years to come). Of course they gave me a GREAT Meal, and we made six (6) runs that day.
  Lt Hamilton told me to come down on a Saturday and spend the night at the firehouse. My father couldn't"t believe what I had told him. So the Saturday night came. It sure was worth waiting for. That night, they had 18 runs of which two were all hands and one was a second alarm. I remember being completely wiped out the next morning, and I didn"t even work. It was an experience that I will never forget. "I was Hooked". The next time they let me bring down my younger brother, and guess what ! He was hooked too.
  Lt Hamilton Never Bragged about the rescues he had made. I would ask him and he told me something like; "Its really no big deal", and he would just smile. It was the other guys that would tell me what he did, and that was only after he left the room. Of course, I was probadly too young to really appreciate the story of those rescues, especially having never fought a fire myself at that young age. But to me, all these guys were NewYork City Firefighters, and they were all hero's.
  I wonder what happened to those guys I met in the Firehouse those many years ago. I"ve heard talk that Lt Hamilton had retired shortly and moved to Ariz. The guy that first invited me down was named Tony Tudduini of Eng 210. I think somebody in his family ran a Mom/Pop Store in Fairfield, Ct. And I remember a guy on Rescue 2 named Jim. I think they called him Big Red. He was about 6"4".
  For me, that was over 40 years ago. I can still remember what it was like for me to be at that firehouse and riding that rig. If any of those guys are still around, I can"t Thank You enough for all you did for me. You talk about role models "These guys were the champions of it".
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 04, 2009, 11:16:55 PM
After my Rescue 2 stay, I was ready to get right into this stuff. I only wanted to be a fireman, and Bridgeport, Ct was the only dept. I knew prior to my visit. Crystal controlled scanners had just come out. A friend of mine had told me that he could pick up NYC on his scanner at home in Bridgeport. In fact Manhatten and the Bronx were on the same frequency at the time. (154.25 mhz). Then shortly after "Portable Crystal Controlled" scanners started hitting the market. This meant that I could now drive down to NYC and take my portable scanner with me. I remember it had four channels in it. I could now chase the calls in NY like I had been doing in my hometown.
  I decided to pick Manhatten because it had numbered streets that were pretty easy to get around. Besides those companies were really starting to get busy then. It was around 1968/1969 at the beginning of the War Years. I would park near Eng 58/Lad 26 and chase them around. Other companies in the area were busy too. (Eng's 35, 36, 37, 59, 91, Lads 14, 30, and 40). Around 3 PM the pull boxes would really start coming in because thats when the kids got out of school. You"d see companies crossing the same intersections, going to different calls. It was the policy then to give 3 and 2 for each box. In the summer it would get worse. Mostly false alarms, but sometimes they"d set a rubbish fire or abandoned car on fire to "make it legal". Sometimes a company would go to the same box five or six times a night. The rigs would go out for a run and get three or four more before they got back to the firehouse. Of course there were the jobs too. Harlem had Taxpayers and multiple family dwellings. The neighborhood was getting worse. Good people were moving out and there were more vacant apartments. The street people would move into these apts with no electricity. Candles would be used. The vacant apts also became dumping grounds for anybody who had rubbish to get rid of.
  Landlords couldn"t pay their bills because of the vacancy rate. They would either pay somebody to set a fire or set it themselves. Then collect on the insurance. If tenants got burned out from a fire, they went to the top of the list for new public housing. Sometimes the occupants would set the fire themselves to get into the newer public housing. The work load was starting to pick up for the FDNY. I remember Squad 1 was in Harlem with Eng 59/ Lad 30. Engine 36 was still in business on 125th St. And a new type of fire apparatus was just starting to come out called a "Tower Ladder". It was a great time to be around for a young 18 year old who wanted to be a fireman.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 06, 2009, 10:55:37 PM
  One day while in my local library, I noticed something on a magazine about "The Busiest Firehouse in the World". I think at the time it was called "True Magazine". It said that a book would be coming out called "Report from Engine Co 82" and that it was written by a New York City Firefighter named Dennis Smith. It said that this company was in The Bronx, NY on Intervale Ave. and did over 10,000 calls the year before. I really had no idea of where this Bronx Firehouse was, so I got myself a street map and drove down there. I had become familiar with those Harlem Companies and that area, but this place was new to me. When I got there I saw that I wasn"t the only one. About twenty cars were all parked across the street from the firehouse. Each car had three to four buffs in it. Guys from The City, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Long Island. Everybody had a scanner. The area looked much worse than what I had seen in Harlem.
  There was a small grocery store across the street from the firehouse called "Angie"s Market". Angie sure didn"t mind the buffs hanging out in front of her store because Angie made a fortune supplying the buffs with their goodies. Hard to believe, but there were no McDonald's, Wendy"s, Dunkin Donuts around then. Not for miles. Maybe not even in the Bronx. If there were, we sure didn"t know about them. In fact, Angie's Market was probadly the only store left in the area making a profit.
  At that time the FDNY had a Signal 10-30 that was used very often. It meant a "working fire" and using 2 Eng's and 2 Lads. These were Big fires in themselves. Sometimes a vacant five brick fully involved with No exposures. Today this would be a second or third alarm. By this time, the FDNY had gotten a few more tower ladders in and they were very pleased at the way they were able to knock down fire going from floor to floor with the tower ladder stream.It was get the fire knocked down and get back in service as soon as possible.
   A priority system for response to fires was put into place. I don"t know if this was official or just something that had to be done because they were just so busy. Occupied building fires got the highest priority. Vacant Building fires were next, then car and rubbish fires. I would see car fires that nobody showed up for and they just burned themselves out. I can remember hearing Ladder companies going in first due for an occupied building fire from 50 blocks away. There just wasn"t enough companies to cover the tremendous workload. And that was with having Squad 2, all the extra second sections, relocated companies into the South Bronx, and the Tactical Control Engine and Ladder Truck. I believe the Bronx had TCU 512 (an Engine Co) and TCU 712 (a Ladder Co.). The TCUs were extra companies manned between the hours of 3 PM to 1 AM, the busiest time for fires in the area. Brooklyn had TCUs 532 and 732 also.
  It was nonstop. You couldn"t scan two boros at a time. If you wanted to listen to two separate boros, you"d need two separate scanners. You could turn on the scanner any hour of the day and it was like listening to an AM/FM radio station. As the dispatchers would be talking you would hear the constant pull boxes tapping in and the sound of other dispatchers taking calls over the phones. How those dispatchers handled it is a Miracle in Itself. They sure did earn their pay. And that was before computers, MDTs etc. They sure did a great job, especially with what they had to work with and the overwhelming amount of work. And those guys on the job that went from fire to fire. As I look back at it some 40 years ago, it seems like an impossible mission. It almost seems like it really didn"t happen. But somehow, those guys did it night after night, day after day. I was about to get an education that no school or college ever dreamed about teaching. I would see the Greatest Firefighters in the World in Action. For me, it was "Being at the Right Place, at the Right Time".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on May 06, 2009, 11:34:25 PM
My early buffing days began riding my bike in my neighborhood of Flatbush in Brooklyn in the 50s.  I would drive to E 281/ L 147 and would run errands to the store for them.  Upon return, they would invite me into the back room and buy me a soda.  It was a thrill watching them respond and a bigger thrill watching Ladder 147 back their tiller rig into their quarters.  Their quarters was built at a strange angle and required skill to get the truck back in.  It was quite a laugh seeing a relocated company attempt it when they were not used to it.

Engine 248 was first due at my home so I would help them pick up hose after a fire and then get a ride back to the firehouse.  In 1963, I worked in a bank half a block from E 248/ Bn 41.  I would bend the rules and cash several checks on pay day knowing the crew on duty could not get to the bank; every payday I was invited to the firehouse for lunch.  As we got to know each other better, I was formally asked by the Captain to sign on as an Auxiliary.  I did and rode with the Engine and the Battalion from 1964 to 1973.  It was a much different time then than it is now.  I got to do things many others just dream about.  I remember riding the back step on a run on Flatbush Avenue.  We all had one arm hooked through the metal subway style hanger and the other arm around the back of the guy next to you.  The lad on the left side of the rear step swung around the rig to see where we were going, saw a serious volume of smoke, swung back and said: "Boys, it's time to pull up our boots."  We were first due at a two alarm taxpayer fire.


One night we were watching TV in the back room; the back room was where the horses had been kept in the horse-drawn days.  A news flashed announced that Martin Luther King had been shot.  After a while, one fireman said :"Let's go put on our boots."  No sooner did we do just that, the bells started ringing and we were out the door to a fire; that night it was one after another.

The firefighting that I experienced in my time there laid the groundwork for over thirty years of firefighting to follow.  Nothing has ever come close to that time.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 07, 2009, 10:37:17 AM
Thanks John for your story. I"m sure there are a lot more out there, and I for one, would sure like to hear them. This was the Busiest time in the history of the fire service, and the FDNY was the Busiest in the World. As is stated from the documentry "The Bronx is Burning", "New York has more fires than Chicago, Detroit, Philadelphia and Los Angeles, PUT TOGETHER". I"m sure that I am not the only guy that has a few stories to tell. In fact, I usually only got down there about once a week. There are people out there that weren"t born during those busy years that need to hear what it was like then. I hope others will join in and tell their stories of those busy years.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on May 07, 2009, 12:51:13 PM
A couple of stories and memories with no names mentioned to protect the innocent:

We pulled up first due to a four story brick with fire out two windows on the fourth floor.  I hooked up to the hydrant and then ran back to pull more hose from the rig to the front door of the building.  I kept dropping hose at the door ( regulations said I couldn't enter buildings).  The lieutenant on duty saw what I was doing and said they needed help getting the line up the stairwell to the top floor; in I went, soon arriving on the fire floor.  When we were taking up, the lieutenant took me aside and acknowledged what I had been doing.  He said I had been around long enough and that I should go wherever the company went.  The next time I worked with the Captain he verified the same, and so it went.

With the 41 Battalion in quarters, I soon spent time in the office typing fire reports, to assist the aide.  I also rode with the Battalion and was known as the aide to the aide.  Due to my yellow helmet, I was also referred to as the Lemon-Aide.  I got to know the guys in the, then, six other houses in the battalion.  One chief didn't like wearing his walkie talkie and, anytime I was working, I became his radio man.  He told me to stay on his coat tails and I would radio the preliminary down to the aide in the street.  I came out of a house where we had used all hands to see the Deputy of (then) the 12th Division on the front lawn.  I thought I would get in trouble for being inside.  The BC walked up to talk to the Deputy, the Deputy took one look at me, and said: "How ya doin'?"  No problem.

Another aide didn't like staying outside so he gave his walkie talkie.  I had to get the address, size up, exposures, etc. and they would radio down what they were going to use.  I would then give the preliminary on the car radio.  Once, at an all hands, I ran around to  get the size up, help chase kinks, and get the report from the BC and aide.  I was out of breath when I gave the preliminary and the dispatcher, quite possibly Warren Fuchs, said: "Brooklyn to Battalion 41, when you catch your breath, I could use the exposures."
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on May 08, 2009, 10:09:35 AM
   I'm now 58 and practically grew up at the Ladder 17 (E60 moved in there in 1948), Engine 60, Batt. 14 firehouse. At that time there were a couple of other young buffs there including Bobby "The Beef" Engel and we were mentored by an old buff, Jimmy Ginty who tought us FDNY history dating all the way back to the turn of the century. The company mascot was a female Dalmation named "Cookie" who actually knew the bells and would run out into the street barking whenever a 2100 or 2200 box came in. The chief responded on all 2100 & 2200 boxes and the engine & truck to most ;). Because the response area wasn't too large, I was able to actually run on foot to many 1st due boxes. When I was as young as 8 (1957), my mom would let me stay in front of the firehouse while she shopped nearby and the members would welcome me letting me hang out at the watch desk. Before the late 60's the area was already fairly busy but there wasn't much crime or arson but around late 1965 all hell broke out to the east side of the response area. I'll never forget certain box numbers: 2103-Cypress & 139, 2147, 2148 & 2149-on 138th from St. Anns to Willis, 2155-Brook & 139, 2156-Cypress & 138, 2162-St. Anns & 140, 2163-Willis & 140, 2171-Brook & 141, 2172-Crimmins & 141, 2173-Cypress & 141, 2180-Beekman & Oak Ter., 2187-Crimmins & St. Mary St., 2194-St. Anns & 144, 2195-Willis & 144, 2201-Brook & 145, 2205-St. Anns & 146, 2206-Willis & 146, 2209-Brook & 147, 2227-Brook & 149, 2228-St. Anns & 149, 2229-Cauldwell & 149, 2230-Bergen & 148, 2264-Westchester & Trinity, 2265-Westchester & Eagle. Whenever any of these came in they were almost certain to be workers.             
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on May 08, 2009, 12:54:06 PM
Gentlemen: thanks for the stories !! Keep them coming !! My only memories of that time period (1970) was watching the news on WPIX(11) & WWOR(9) as a wee little tike. Nothing but fire,fire,fire on the news.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on May 08, 2009, 01:30:25 PM
   I remember how the department had apparatus from many different manufacturers just before the "War Years". At a big job you could see pumpers and hosewagons from Ahrens-Fox, American LaFrance, International Harvester, Mack, Walter and Ward LaFrance. Aerials from Ahrens-Fox, American LaFrance, FWD, Mack/Maxim, Pirsch, Seagrave & Walter were also common. Back then many slower and outlying companies were relegated to reassigned (used) apparatus, some even 20+ years old and still in frontline service. Ladder companies in those "slower/quieter" areas were still running with wooden sticks into the late 1960's. Meanwhile, ladder companies in Midtown Manhattan, Harlem, the South Bronx, Bed-Stuy, Brownsville, and E. New York received the newest rigs. North and East Bronx companies like E38, E43, E62, E63, E79, E81, E90, L32, L37, L39, L41 & L46 that are very active today were fairly quiet back then.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: anesti on May 08, 2009, 03:10:07 PM
does anyone remember fire activity in the grand concourse north of fordham,and the fordham area during the 60's and 70's as a kid growing up on fordham and the grand concourse (i was born in 1981) it always seemed the burning stopped at the low 180's,and on the 4 train after the 183rd st stop all the way down to about 167th st the horizon was full of burned out buildings it was also visible from sedwick ave going onto the Washington heights bridge. i know the hotspots were jerome ave and burnside ave and i think it might have been the 177th st area. the only rigs of that time i remember were the old red rescue 3 with the Train horns which would send shivers down your spine, the phone booth ladder that 56 had for a while and the 1990 seagrave 110' aerial that ladder 38 ran, and the chevy that was division 4 (currently division 7) at one point.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 116ff60 on May 08, 2009, 04:42:13 PM
You must be up thier in age if you remember walter fire apparatus.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 08, 2009, 06:35:23 PM
  As the War Years started, the busy area was considered everything below the Cross Bronx Expressway. Then things started to pick up as far north as East Tremont Ave. With more and more apartments, more buildings, and more blocks being burned out, Fordham Rd became the border. This put companies like Eng 88/Lad 38 right up there for runs and workers. By this time there really wasn"t much left in 82s/31s area. Most of the neighborhood was burned out shells or huge piles of rubbish, even stacked with abandoned burned out vehicles. It was a common sight to see an engine company parked down a street flowing a solid stream of water from the stang gun, knocking down a huge rubbish fire where buildings once stood. By this time the new ERS Boxes (Emergency Reporting System) were starting to hit the streets. Each Box had two buttons on it (Red botton for Fire, Blue Botton for Police). It also had a built in speaker so the caller could talk directly to the dispatcher. If the fire button was activated with no caller response, the FDNY would send out an Engine to check it out. You guessed it. A new game was found to entertain the young juveniles. They would push the button and laugh when the FD showed up. Sometimes these companies would have to answer 20-30 of these a night. The companies got the reputation as "ERS EXPRESS". This as the fires continued to burn.
   The busy area at the time also included everything East of Webster Ave. But the fear then was that it eventually would spread west and those companies would see the same kind of fire duty. Companies like 92/44 and 75/33 really weren"t that busy at that time. But now we all know that those planners were exactly right. Those companies picked up in work and to this day are always in the top ten, along with E42, 48, Lad 56. In fact, during the busy War Years, myself and a friend of mine went to a pizza place on 183rd St and Jerome Ave., directly across from the old 75/33s qtrs. We sat there for about four hours and they NEVER turned a wheel. While their coworkers to the South East didn"t stop. Now some 30 years later, the pizza place is not there. The old Firehouse has become a home to one of FDNYs EMS Stations (19-I think), and 75/33 has a new firehouse about two blocks away. And oh yes, I"ve never seen Eng 75, Lad 33 sit in their quarters four hours without going out the door again.
   I recently purchased a movie called "Wolfin". The movie itself in my opinion really wasn"t that great. But it was filmed in the area where the hub of the War Years were. It really shows in parts of that movie what the area looked like. So I decided to buy it. The South Bronx area had been compared to Berlin after the Bombings.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: anesti on May 08, 2009, 07:00:50 PM
great info nfd2004, does anyone remember  a job in the bronx had to be no more than mid 80's??? Where the emigrants tower is still today next to it on the left was a telephone building possible nynex or bell Atlantic now its a hip clinic but back in the 80's there was a fire in that building must have had been a multiple i doubt the super pumper tender was in service but i do recall a maxi water unit whether it was satellite 3 or maxi water 1 i couldnt tell but one piece of equipment i might have seen or maybe it was just a figment of my imagination was a box truck that had hose pouring out of the back,but then again it might just been the msu unit. but anyway anyone recall this fire??? might be a long shot i have searched and asked a few people to no avail..
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: anesti on May 08, 2009, 07:04:24 PM
  As the War Years started, the busy area was considered everything below the Cross Bronx Expressway. Then things started to pick up as far north as East Tremont Ave. With more and more apartments, more buildings, and more blocks being burned out, Fordham Rd became the border. This put companies like Eng 88/Lad 38 right up there for runs and workers. By this time there really wasn"t much left in 82s/31s area. Most of the neighborhood was burned out shells or huge piles of rubbish, even stacked with abandoned burned out vehicles. It was a common sight to see an engine company parked down a street flowing a solid stream of water from the stang gun, knocking down a huge rubbish fire where buildings once stood. By this time the new ERS Boxes (Emergency Reporting System) were starting to hit the streets. Each Box had two buttons on it (Red botton for Fire, Blue Botton for Police). It also had a built in speaker so the caller could talk directly to the dispatcher. If the fire button was activated with no caller response, the FDNY would send out an Engine to check it out. You guessed it. A new game was found to entertain the young juveniles. They would push the button and laugh when the FD showed up. Sometimes these companies would have to answer 20-30 of these a night. The companies got the reputation as "ERS EXPRESS". This as the fires continued to burn.
   The busy area at the time also included everything East of Webster Ave. But the fear then was that it eventually would spread west and those companies would see the same kind of fire duty. Companies like 92/44 and 75/33 really weren"t that busy at that time. But now we all know that those planners were exactly right. Those companies picked up in work and to this day are always in the top ten, along with E42, 48, Lad 56. In fact, during the busy War Years, myself and a friend of mine went to a pizza place on 183rd St and Jerome Ave., directly across from the old 75/33s qtrs. We sat there for about four hours and they NEVER turned a wheel. While their coworkers to the South East didn"t stop. Now some 30 years later, the pizza place is not there. The old Firehouse has become a home to one of FDNYs EMS Stations (19-I think), and 75/33 has a new firehouse about two blocks away. And oh yes, I"ve never seen Eng 75, Lad 33 sit in their quarters four hours without going out the door again.
   I recently purchased a movie called "Wolfin". The movie itself in my opinion really wasn"t that great. But it was filmed in the area where the hub of the War Years were. It really shows in parts of that movie what the area looked like. So I decided to buy it. The South Bronx area had been compared to Berlin after the Bombings.

go

go to charlotte st now its all condo's lol
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on May 08, 2009, 10:15:13 PM
  Charlotte St? Back in the day, we would hear boxes like: 2743-Charlotte & 170 and know right away that there would be a big job. Buffing at 60/17 we heard that box come in so often that we didn't have to pull up the card because we already knew that 60 was 1st due on the 4th. And a couple of times that box went to 4 alarms. ;) 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on May 09, 2009, 12:07:16 AM
   I remember assignment cards printed just before the "War Years" had certain Bronx companies that didn't relocate while others almost always did. For instance, in the Bronx, Engines 38, 41, 42, 43, 48, 50, 81, 83, 88, 89, 90, and 94 did a lot of relocating while Engines 45, 46, 52, 60, 61, 63, 64, 68, 70, 71, 73, 75, 79, 82, 92 and 97 were almost always covered. E41 relocated to 36, 58, 68, 91, 92 and 94. E42 relocated to 36, 45, 60, 62, 63, 71 and 79. E43 covered 45, 46, 68 & 84. E48 covered 60, 61, 62, 63, 71, 92, 93 & 97. E50 covered 69, 73, 82 & 92. E81 covered 63, 68, 75 & 95. E83 relocated to 60, 64 & 73. E88 relocated to 45, 46, 70, 75 & 92. E89 relocated to E64, E90 relocated to 45, 46, 75, 79 and 82. E94 relocated to 45, 60, 71 & 73. E96 relocated to 73. Ladder companies were more of a mixed batch although some like L17, 31, 39, 52, & L53 didn't relocate.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on May 09, 2009, 11:01:36 AM
I remember when the NY Jets played in Super Bowl III in 1969; I had a choice of watching the game alone on my old black and white TV or going out to Engine 248 and watching on their brand new color set.  I went to the firehouse, signed in, put my gear on the rig, and watched the endless pregame hoopla.  Just as the teams were lining up for the opening kickoff, the bells announced a first run and out we went.  It turned out to be an all hands in a multiple dwelling.  By the time we picked up our lines, returned to quarters, stripped wet lengths and replace them with dry, we got to see one play of the game; this was the Baltimore Colts one and only TD of the game.  The bells rang for our home box: 1552- Flatbush and Church Avenues.  We turned out to see heavy smoke pouring out of Jahn's Ice Cream Parlor just down Church Avenue.  Another first due all hands.  By the time we got back to quarters, the infamous Joe Namath Super Bowl was over.  I shoulda stayed home.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 09, 2009, 12:18:59 PM
As pointed out earlier was a famous street noted for its arson during the War Years. That is Charlotte St. It really isn"t a very big street, but that became the symbol of the Arson in NYC. The book "Report from Eng 82" talked about it, Presidents Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reegan visited it, The documentry "The Bronx is Burning" made mention of it, and the movie "Wolfin" had filmed on it. Today Charlotte St has beautiful single family raised ranch houses, with nice lawns and white picket fences. Long gone are the rows of burned out 5 and 6 story tenements. Or the huge rubbish piles or rat infested lots. A few streets over are beautiful two story new condos. Crotona Park, once filled with high weeds, abondoned burned out cars, plenty of rat holes burrowed into the ground, has been replaced with beautiful tennis courts, well kept lawns, walking paths and lakes with water sprays. It certainly doesn"t look like the same place it was 30 years ago. Its hard to believe that a place like had been described actually existed. At times it was compared to a third world country. I remember bringing down a few buffs, and when we left the South Bronx, one commented; "its like they opened the gates and let us out".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 09, 2009, 06:05:07 PM
It wasn"t only the South Bronx that was burning in those years. Neighborhoods in Harlem, Bed-Sty, Brownsville, and the Lower East Side were all catching their share of work. A little later companies in the Washington Heights area, Bushwick and the WEST Bronx all started picking up too. But it was the South Bronx that had gotten the Reputation as "The Arson Capital of the World". For those travelers and truckers driving along I-95 South bound on the Cross Bronx Expressway, if they didn"t know what was going on down in those South Bronx streets, they sure got to see the effects of it. Just before the Third Ave Exit, you could see from the expressway, an entire block of burned out five and six story brick apartment buildings. Every single apartment was burned out. Maybe if you happened to ride by the right time, you could see the smoke rising while Tower Ladder 31 or 58 went to work on it from their bucket.
  Then in 1975 or 1976, the "Entire Country" got to see for themselves what firefighters and buffs already knew. As people watched their TVs the World Series was being played from Yankee Staduim. While the fans were cheering on Regie Jackson, the FDNY was doing what they had been doing every night. That was putting out fires in the South Bronx and other neighborhoods throughout the City. Only this time it was in the area of Yankee Stadium, and the TV cameras focused in on it between plays. Sports Announcer, the Late Howard Cosell, not only talked about the Series Game, but also how the Bronx was burning. I believe the fire went to a Fourth Alarm, and the next day everybody from NY to LA was talking about the Game, "AND" "The Fire". America had now witnessed for themselves, what really was going on in "The Arson Capital of the World". And by the way, "I do believe the Yankees won".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on May 09, 2009, 10:48:38 PM
  That was on Wednesday, Oct. 12th, 1977, a 5th Alarmer seen worldwide on ABC Sports. The fire building was the old PS 3 school building which was a  large 400 x 200 4 story vacant school built in 1890. E71 responded to an ERS box at 1917hrs then 3 minutes later Box 2310-Melrose & 158 was sent, followed by a 7-5 and it progressed all all the way up to a 5th alarm at 2151hrs, 2 hours later. The Super Pumper and 2 additional tower ladders were also called in. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on May 10, 2009, 07:30:38 AM
If I remember correcly there was a movie titled "Fort Apache, the Bronx" This movie concerned itself with NYPD operations and I think Paul Newman starred in it. In the movie there is an actual fire scene that was in progress while scenes were being filmed so the director just kept it in. I think 82/31 was shown in action :)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 10, 2009, 08:46:42 AM
Guitarman314, Yes, thats the fire I was talking about. I never expected anybody out there to have that many details on it. Yes, it was a school on fire. I remember my buddies talking about it. There were no computers, Web Sites, or pagers in those days to get the rundowns etc. It was one buff telling another, or in my case, I saw it on TV. I was a new guy on the job and they were watching the game in the firehouse. I don"t remember exactly what I was doing at the time, but I do remember the guys yelling to me; "Hey Willy, come check out this job in the Bronx". Thank you Guitarman for that info.
   Mr Grumpy Grizzly, Yes, that movie "Fort Apache the Bronx" did show 82/31 going into a job near the end of the movie. For those who don"t know, the movie itself was about the NYPDs 42nd Pct. It showed the conditions that existed in the chaotic South Bronx during those busy years. It was filmed on the streets of The South Bronx. I have it in my collection because I consider it to be a good movie, and it shows what it was like in those years. I had thought about mentioning that movie, but you beat me to it.
   Thank you both for your input.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on May 10, 2009, 10:08:11 AM
Fort Apache was the 41 PCT I believe.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on May 10, 2009, 10:57:21 AM
Fort Apache was the 41 PCT I believe.
Yes, the "real" Fort Apache was the 41st Pct. then located on Simpson St. nr. Westchester Ave. but the movie was shot at the 42nd Pct. at Washington Ave. where it begins off 3rd Avenue & 160th St. Could be because the 42 was located in a plaza setting and it would be better for scenes like the local people rioting in front of it. ;) 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 10, 2009, 01:59:47 PM
One day as my buddy and I were heading down to buff, he suggested we have a change of pace. He said, "how about we go to Brooklyn and check those guys out". I was happy with the Bronx, but I figured what the heck. So we headed to Brooklyn. We knew that some of the hot spots were in Bed-Sty, Brownsville, and Bushwick. So I drove while my buddy checked the map. It was the first time I had been to Brooklyn since my Rescue 2 Rides. That was around 1968 and it was now 1976. I remember that because a lot of firehouses had painted their apparatus doors in honor of the up coming Bicentennial Celebration for July 4, 1976. Some of the rigs had also been painted. I remember the entire cab of one American LaFrance Tiller Ladder being painted red, white, and blue. I think the FDNY was holding a contest for the best looking rig and firehouse doors. A few were even published in a WNYF Magazine.
  Anyway, my buddy and I located a good spot to hang out. It was a McDonald's on Broadway in Brooklyn. Bed-Sty was to the south, Bushwick was to the north and Brownsville was to the east. All busy areas. It didn"t take long for our first hit. It was about 11 AM and a job came in for Evergreen Ave (Bushwick Section). I could see the smoke as we left the lot. Just as we arrived the 28 Battalion transmitted the Second Alarm. This fire was on the top floor of a 4 story row frame building. There were maybe ten 4 story frames all attached by a common cockloft in the entire city block. It was the first time I had ever seen a fire in a row of wood frames. I couldn"t believe how quickly the fire had spread throughout the cockloft, taking the entire block. I remember having a framed picture of it in my living room for a long time. ( Sure lucky to have such an understanding wife ). The entire block was on fire and other friends from the fire service would look at the picture and couldn"t believe that they held it to a Second Alarm. 
  Bushwick certainly saw their share of fire, epically around 1975, 76, and 77. Companies like E271/L124, E277/L112, then Eng 252 (now Sqd 252) sure caught it. And that area was loaded with the row frames. In those days there was no FAST truck or Rac Unit. On a Hot, muggy, summer day, you"d knock down one fire and then get ready for another. I think it was August of 1976 that the FDNY had over 100 Multiple Alarms for the month. At one time I had heard that if a chief went to a Multiple Alarm it was like they were stealing companies that the city needed elsewhere. I certainly have Great Respect for Firefighters today. But the guys that were on the job in those days have to go down as "The Greatest Generation" of Firefighters. The amount of work they caught with very limited resources is overwhelming to say the least. And by no means do I mean to forget those Great FDNY Dispatchers who worked behind the scenes, with no computers, only paper and pencil.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on May 10, 2009, 06:00:10 PM
Back in the late 60s and early 70s, the Battalions would go from firehouse to firehouse delivering "the bag" which contained department orders and other important correspondence.  One night Battalion 41 was making the rounds and we read that a new signal (10-38) had been instituted to report, at the time, steam leaks.  In those days, in addition to the firehouses, we also delivered "the bag" to the Brooklyn CO as they were in our response area.  Wouldn't ya know: before we got to the CO, we had a call which was a steam leak.  The aide radioed the preliminary: 10-18 for a 10-38.  There was silence from the dispatcher.  After a few minutes, he asked what the signal was.  Again, the aide merely said: 10-18 for a 10-38.  More silence and then the dispatcher said: Battalion 41, please call the CO.  We were there two minutes later and showed them the department order with the new signal.  We all had a good laugh!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on May 10, 2009, 11:49:46 PM
Back in the 60's and 70's what was the response after the 10-75 was transmitted. I assume the recsue and Div went but what else? What was the Super Pumper sent on and how many Satellites responded with the Super Pumper.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on May 11, 2009, 07:31:13 AM
Back then, there was no 10-75.  The signal for a working fire was a 10-30.  There were no special units until the all hands was transmitted.  Fast truck did not exist.  I believe the Super Pumper did not go until a third alarm.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 11, 2009, 08:40:20 AM
Just to add to the above, yes, I believe the Super Pumper system would respond Citywide on a Third Alarm or Greater. That usually consisted of The Super Pumper Unit, The Super Tender Unit, the Maxi Water Unit (which I believe were all at the quarters of Eng 207/Lad 110 in Brooklyn), plus the nearest Satellite Unit. At that time there were only three Satellite Units. I believe Sat. 1 w/Eng 9, Sat. 2 w/Eng 72 and Sat 3 w/Eng 330. All of the units were also manned. The Maxi Water Unit might have been manned by the boss of the System, because Maxi Water was the one that seemed to always give the Super Pumper Hookup site over the radio. And Maxi Water was a rig similar to the Satellite Units. The Super Pumper hook up site could be blocks away from the fire, but would give the best water supply.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on May 11, 2009, 10:18:22 AM
I believe in the 60s the Rescue went on some all hands and sometimes only on the second alarm, depending how close the fire was to their quarters.  There was no all hands BC in those days, just the Deputy.  Brooklyn for example had many more deputies back then: 10th, 11th, 12th, 15th, and for a while the 17th.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: FDNY150 on May 11, 2009, 10:39:06 AM
The Maxi Water Unit was the rig that replaced the Super Pumper in 1982. If available, the SPS went out on the third, or a second in Lower Manhattan.

Satellites were manned at the time and went out on the 2nd Alarm. I'm not sure when the Satellites went to unmanned status. When I came on the job in 1997, Satellite with the associated Engine went on the 2nd, or an all hands in South Queens and SI. E-207/Maxi went out on the 3rd with another Satellite and its associated Engine. In October of 1998, Maxi Water was reorganized as Satellite 6, and all Satellites went out on the 2nd.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 11, 2009, 12:27:13 PM
  I think the Satellites and other special units lost their manning during a severe budget crisis sometime around 1976/77. That was right at the peak of the "War Years". At that time they eliminated manning on those units and closed several other companies. That was the time when the Second Sections, Squad Companies etc were all closed. If I remember correctly they closed about 50 companies. They also laid off 200 Firefighters. One guy I know of, who I believe is a Battalion Chief now, got on the job and even got the company he wanted after coming out of the Academy. He then got laid off and later took a job as a city bus driver, until getting hired back by the FDNY about two years later. I"m sure there are a few guys out there that remember that. I believe it was during Mayor Beame"s time.
  Along that same time, instead of sending 3 Engs and 2 Trucks to every pull box or structure assignment, The FDNY decided to send 2 and 2 only, plus the chief. Thats when the signal 10-75 came into play. If the 10-75 was transmitted or the dispatch was receiving numerous calls of the fire, ONLY then would a third due engine respond. This was a time when every available company was needed. It was also around the time that some Engines were being purchased that would be able to mix a chemical with the water. They were called "Rapid Water Engines". Using that chemical referred to as "Slippery Water" a 1 3/4 line could flow as much as a 2 1/2 inch line, thereby reducing the manning required for a 2 1/2. The problem was, it did flow the water, but everything was so slippery that guys were falling down stairways etc. So that finished the "Rapid Water" dream.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on May 11, 2009, 04:12:05 PM
Information is from Gus Johnson's Fire Buffs Handbook. Companies that were de-activated: Manhattan- Engines 15, 26, 27, 44, 47, Ladders 8, 9, 10. Bronx- Engine 89, Ladder 53, Sq 5. SI Engines 154 and 167. Brooklyn Engines 205, 212, 218, 232, 269, 278, Squad 3 and 4, Quens- Engine 263, 293, 294,306, 328, and Ladder 171. Marine units were reduced to 5 units.  The Super Pumper ceased to be a seperate unit. The unit was manned by Engine 207. :)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1075thebox on May 11, 2009, 07:52:54 PM
i believe that 89 engine was only closed for a few days and then reorganized
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 11, 2009, 08:19:57 PM
As the FDNY night shift members were arriving to their firehouse on Wednesday July 13, 1977, like most other hot summer nights they knew that it wasn"t a matter of will they catch "A" job, it was; "How Many Jobs". But I"m sure they had no idea of what it would actually be like. As darkness approached, at 9:35 PM the Lights went out. The entire city had lost all electric power. This had happened 12 years earlier in November, 1965. Then the Baby Boom came along 9 months later. But this "Blackout" would be quite different from the November, 1965 one. When the Blackout of 1977 occurred, it was a hot summer night. Everybody was outside. Most stores had already closed except for a few drug stores and package stores. By 10:00 PM the first stores were being broken into and looted. As the night went on, more people joined in and more stores were looted. It was beyond what the NYPD could handle. Then some stores were set on fire. As time went on, more stores were set on fire. Brooklyn and The Bronx were getting hit the hardest. Broadway in Brooklyn, which divides Bed-Sty from Bushwick certainly saw the most fire. In a four block stretch, every single store was burned out. In a stretch of 30 Blocks, at least one store was completely burned out in every block. Also in Brooklyn, Utica Ave and Pitkin Ave streets saw a huge amount of fire activity. In The Bronx, it was Southern Blvd around 163rd St and above, and East Tremont from Webster Ave. to Boston Rd. Of course there were other areas hit too, throughout the city.
   By the time it was over on Friday morning July 15th, the FDNY had 3,900 alarms, and fought 1,037 fires. Of the 3900 alarms, 1,677 never got answered. There were 13 Multiple Alarm Fires, and 40 All Hands. Brooklyn had 119 stores burned out, and The Bronx had 78 in about a 36 hour period.
   Brooklyn had 303 fires, of which 7 were multiples, and 20 were all hands
   Bronx had 307 fires, of which 3 were multiples, and 14 were all hands
   Manhatten had 209 fires, of which 1 was a multiple , and 3 were all hands
   Queens had 134 fires, of which 2 were multiples, and 3 were all hands
   Staten Island had 45 fires
      (It should be noted that all of the above statics were taken from a book called "Blackout Looting" published in 1979)
   I remember riding down there Friday afternoon. The first place I headed for was Broadway in Brooklyn. Several areas were still blocked off from vehicle traffic. The overhead elevated subway line had been reopened after being shut down due to the fires. I could still see some places with a light smoke condition and an engine and ladder still on the scene. The steel scissor gates were ripped off the store fronts. The streets were full of debris. Charred pieces of wood, empty boxes of melted ice cream, meats, and magazines were flowing down the streets and blocking up the storm drains. Flooding became a problem. I then headed to the Bronx where it was the same story. I remember hearing companies asking for help. If an engine on the scene of a fire, asked just for a truck, the dispatcher would say "well if you really need one, we"ll try to get you one".  If a fire went to an all hands you can bet, they had a huge amount of fire. Jobs were getting knocked down using just one engine and one ladder. There was no time to hang around and overhaul. Any overhaul was done with a tower ladder using the stream from the bucket.
   I only saw the "After Effects", and heard some of it on the scanner. I"m hoping that a few friends that actually lived there and remember it will join in. I"m sure you got a few stories about the historic 36 hours to tell. That sure would be great !!!
   And by the way, that Gus Johnson"s Fire Buff"s Handbook is great. If you can find one, in my opinion, its worth picking up.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on May 11, 2009, 10:05:48 PM
Even though I am considerably younger that my friend nfd2004, I remember the blackout in 1965.  I was working in a bank at Flatbush and Church Avenues but also assigned as an auxiliary at Engine 248 half a block away.  The bank manager asked each male employee to escort a female employee home in the dark. (Like that would happen in this time).  I told him I would be more useful on duty at the firehouse and he allowed me to leave.  The blackout occurred right at the change of tours, but the day crew was not allowed to go off duty.  The result was, when the alarm bell rang, with the officer and five men from the day tour, plus me, plus the officer and six men of the night tour, no one knew who should respond; there was not enough room on the rig for everyone.  Somehow we worked it out but not everyone was happy.  Some of us went to a nearby store and convinced them all of their food was going to spoil and that we should have it for our dinner.  We spent the night going from call to call, extricating civilians from stalled elevators and subway trains.  It was a beautiful, moonlight night with a full moon.  In spite of the full moon, there were relatively few working fires.

What a night!  As I remember, the power came back on in Flatbush around 10 PM.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: truck4 on May 12, 2009, 12:56:06 AM
According to Jonathan Mahler's book, The Bronx is Burning, game two of the 1977 World Series vs the Kansas City Royals began with smoke over Yankee Stadium.

'An hour before the first pitch, a fire started in Public School 3, an abandoned elementary school a few blocks west of the ballpark.'

As game coverage began, an overhead shoot from a helicopter showed the fire with Howard Cosell stating- "There it is ladies and gentlemen, the Bronx is burning."
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 12, 2009, 08:38:16 AM
  I am glad these stories are coming out. For me, it was memories of buffing the busiest and best Fire Dept in the world. It"s hard to imagine that anything like those busy War Years will ever happen again. These stories will preserve what happened and I hope the younger buffs and firefighters read these and realize just what "The Greatest Generation Firefighters" did during those busy years, in the busiet fire dept in the world.
  On a side note, I think my friend "johnd248" is counting his age backwards, or his mind is starting to slip. He"s been older than me last I knew. Poor guy, but I still love him. We were members of the same dept 35-40 years ago, when I was 100lbs lighter.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on May 12, 2009, 10:43:08 AM
NFD2004, if I'm not mistaken Rapid Water was originally called Slippery Water and the name was changed due the reason you stated about guys slipping in the water.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on May 12, 2009, 01:46:40 PM
What was the highest number of Sqauds operating in the City at any given time and did they operate the same as today, either an engine or truck.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on May 12, 2009, 05:25:36 PM
Late 50's early sixties: Squad 1 @ E-59. 2 @ E-73. 3 @ E-235, 4@ E-283, 5 @ E-5, 6 @ E-74, 7 @ E-212, 8 @ 243 Lafayette. Info from Ca;derone's book Squad Company Apparatus ;D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 12, 2009, 09:23:39 PM
Regarding mmattyphoto and "Rapid Water" companies. I could be wrong, but I do believe that the Engines that had Rapid Water capibility, used the term "Rapid Water" rather than "Slippery Water". The term "Slippery Water" actually came later as a sort of nickname for it. The reason I say that is because the rigs that were Rapid Water Companies actually had the words (Rapid Water) located on the cab of the engines, above the top center of the windsheild. And also on the each side of the rig a decal about 6" x 6" of a water drop and it said rapid water.
    The question from rdm258 regarding the Squad Cos, during the War Years, they were Engine Companies in busy areas mainly to respond as manpower squads. It was strickly a firefighting unit. The Squads of today are more diversified, with Haz Mat, Confined Space Rescue and High Angle Rescue, besides Firefighting. There is alot of information about the Squad Companies in "History" on this site. But during the years I was buffing, I only remember hearing Sqd 1,w/E59/L30, Sqd 2,w/E73/L42, Sqd 3,wE283 ?, Sqd 4 on Bristol St Brooklyn (?). Thats around 1968/70 until they were disbanded in 1975 (?).
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on May 12, 2009, 10:46:48 PM
The original Squads of the late 50's and early 60's were manpower units that responded in converted hosewagons (mostly 1940 Macks ;)) that had bench seats in the hosebeds. They only carried pike poles, axes, masks and a rescuscitator. They recieved van style vehicles in 1962-65 and then finally got pumpers during the "War Years". 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: R1SmokeEater on May 13, 2009, 10:20:41 AM
Vintage Bronx .................. 
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8K4NKMneEl0&feature=rec-HM-fresh


Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: R1SmokeEater on May 13, 2009, 03:44:26 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4PuIy0pf2A
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 13, 2009, 09:48:41 PM
I"d certainly like to Thank "r1smokeater" for sharing the two previous You Tube Videos. They do tell stories of what it was like during the War Years in The South Bronx and Bushwick. (Thanks Jamie)
  The month of July, 1977 was probadly the busiest month ever for the FDNY. It was really hot and in the streets of NY it was a common sight to see hydrants open on every street as thousands of gallons of water would flow down the streets, sometimes flooding them. In the ghettos like Brownsville, Bushwick, the Lower East Side, or the South Bronx, this was a real problem. Of course with all these hydrants opened, it certainly would have an affect on fighting fires.
  Around 1976/77, Bushwick was the hot spot. The companies in the neighborhood like E271/L124, E277/L112 were doing over 6,000 runs a year. Somewhere along the line I had heard that 6,000 runs or more was what the FDNY considered to be the Dangerous Magic Number. It meant that the neighborhood was in real trouble. Somewhere around that 1976/77 year, Ladder Cos 112 and 124 were at the top two positions for Runs and workers. By now a lot of the South Bronx had been already burned out and those companies were actually starting to slow down a little. But Bushwick was now where most of the daily fires were.
  Around two weeks before or after the Blackout of July 13, 1977 the FDNYs busiest period of fires in a 36 hour span, The FDNY companies would again battle a historic fire. It would be Engine Co 271 that rolled in first due to what would become a Boro Call, the equlivant of 10 Alarms.
  As I remember it, it was a very hot day and as usual the neighborhood hydrants would all be open. I think it came in as a vacant factory on fire at Myrtle and Knickerbocker Aves. Engs 271, 277, and Lads 124, 112 would be responding on the first alarm. On arrival they found a large four story brick factory, fully involved. As these units prepared to fight this fire, they faced the fact that they had very little water pressure due to all the open hydrants. With very limited water the fire was now spreading to a four story dance hall, accross the street to a church, across another street to a row of occupied four story attached wood frames. Parked cars were burning in the street. By now the fire was spreading in all directions. Companies were called for brand patrol and to shut down as many open hydrants as possible. In the end, I had read that 23 buildings were lost. I went down two days later but I counted a total of 40 buildings lost. Either way, it certainly was a Huge fire that completely wiped out an entire neighborhood. and this within two weeks of the Blackout.
  A teenager admitted starting the fire in the vacant four story factory building. His only concern was if his picture was going to be in the paper.
  As I read that Engine Co 271 will be closed, its certainly a loss to the neighborhood. I saw that company at so many fires then. Even though I really didn"t know any of the guys in that company, I remember their faces. Alot of times their faces were all sweaty and covered with soot. They"d see me there with the camera and scanner, and they all knew what I was there for. Usually, I"d get a nod, or a thumbs up. I think I was only in that firehouse once. Now that company is closing. Let me tell ya, "they sure did their share work" !!!! I can tell you this: "Engine 271, will be gone, but not forgotten". Certainly not by me.
   The Previous video, with Ron Carritue is a picture of that fire as it spreads across the street to the row frames.
   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: dillondotcom on May 13, 2009, 11:05:42 PM
Damn, the first video wont work on my computer.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bulldog on May 13, 2009, 11:41:21 PM
Just for everyone's information to watch the video on the last page you need to right click on it and watch it in YouTube, the ability to run it embedded has been disabled. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 14, 2009, 09:02:26 AM
Bulldog, maybe you can help us a little more regarding the video on the previous page. I followed your instructions by clicking on the lower right where it says: "You Tube", but this time all I get is the sound which is music. "NO PICTURE". I thought maybe it was just my computer. But I still can not play it.
  This video was put on here by "r1smokeater". He had sent it to me earlier and was good enough to put it on here for us all to see. Believe me, it sure shows what the conditions were like in those days in the South Bronx. Its about 10 minutes long. If you or anybody can help with being able to watch that video, I"d sure appreciate it. "Its a Great Video". I hope everybody can get to watch this. It brings back memories for the old buffs like johnd248, (sorry John, just had to do it), and for the younger guys, I"m sure they won"t believe what they see.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on May 14, 2009, 09:52:28 AM
The Great Fire of Knickerbocker & Bleeker that I believe nfd referred to  http://www.nyfd.com/box-10-10-767.html
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 14, 2009, 11:21:01 AM
VBCAPT, yes, that is the fire I was referring to. I certainly want to "Thank You" for putting that out there. And it was Knickerbocker and Bleeker. Marcy Ave is near there, but actually the correct address of where the fire orginated was at your Correct Location. I remember seeing a picture, I think in Firehouse Magazine with Tower Ladder 124, trying to flow water from the bucket, but with the very low water pressure, the stream wasn"t even reaching the fire. Thanks Guy.
   Also, if anybody is having problems viewing that video that was posted on the previous page, just send me your E-mail asking for it, and I"ll be glad to forward it to you. It is called Bronx New ork City, and Thanks to "r1smokeater", I have a copy of it. Its worth checking out and I"ll be glad to "Forward" it to you. My E-mail address is: wm.helen.dennis@sbcglobal.net  . If you"ve enjoyed reading the stories and comments by all then I think you"ll want to see this.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bulldog on May 14, 2009, 12:09:48 PM
Bulldog, maybe you can help us a little more regarding the video on the previous page. I followed your instructions by clicking on the lower right where it says: "You Tube", but this time all I get is the sound which is music. "NO PICTURE". I thought maybe it was just my computer. But I still can not play it.
  This video was put on here by "r1smokeater". He had sent it to me earlier and was good enough to put it on here for us all to see. Believe me, it sure shows what the conditions were like in those days in the South Bronx. Its about 10 minutes long. If you or anybody can help with being able to watch that video, I"d sure appreciate it. "Its a Great Video". I hope everybody can get to watch this. It brings back memories for the old buffs like johnd248, (sorry John, just had to do it), and for the younger guys, I"m sure they won"t believe what they see.
Just right click and select the option "Watch on Youtube"
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on May 14, 2009, 12:37:45 PM
You're very welcome nfd!! I remembered seeing that "big one" on Don VanHolt's nyfd website. Here's a link to his vintage fires page,  http://www.nyfd.com/vintage_fires.html
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 14, 2009, 06:53:13 PM
During the busy War Years, the FDNY decided to put up two portable firehouses. These were two bay, one story metal clad buildings put on a concrete slab. It was thought that these portable firehouses could be moved as neighborhoods changed. The metal clad building could be taken apart and put on another concrete slab where the fires and activity was picking up in another part of the city. The FDNY decided to put one of these buildings on Boston Rd housing then Engine 85 and Ladder 59. The other portable firehouse went in Brooklyn, I believe on Rockaway Ave housing then Engine 232 and Ladder 176. They got the nicknames as "The Tin House". These were busy companies. Although it was the plan to move these busy units and the portable firehouses, we know Engine 85 and Engine 232 is no longer with us, when budget cuts closed these two units.
  One summer evening while chasing the Brooklyn outfits, the two apparatus doors were open housing Eng 232, and Lad 176. These "Tin Houses" had been in service for a while and I said to my buddy, "let"s see if we can go in and check out this firehouse". I was really referring to the building itself. It looked like it was cold in the winter and hot in the summer. So we walked in and figured maybe the guys will tell us about their portable firehouse. The guys gladly answered our questions, and gave us a tour of the place. They all seemed to be very happy and comfortable in their portable firehouse. During the tour, they did get a few runs. They asked us to hang around until they came back. Maybe they were just worried about us because it was starting to get dark, and this wasn"t the safest neighborhood to be hanging around in. Of course for myself and my buddy, it was no big deal for us. this is where we had to be to catch the action. The neighborhood didn"t bother us.
  As the night went on, we got to have one of those Great Firehouse meals with the guys. They asked us to stay and ride with them for the night. Again, maybe it was more for our own protection because of the neighborhood. Anyway, in FDNY War Year style, they feed us, let us ride the rigs on the calls, and gave us a bunk to rest in. My buddy rode the Engine and I rode the Truck. We might have made 15 - 18 runs. I think we caught two jobs, Not much rest, but another great night watching "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters" going to work and doing what they do best. "Putting out fires".
  We had only expected to go in there and ask a few questions about their portable metal firehouse. It was way more than we expected and it was an "Honor" to be with them. We were very Thankful for our visit. The sun had risen on the Brooklyn Tin House and it was almost time for us to leave and for the incoming Day Shift to come in. I asked the guys if they would do us "one more favor". I wanted to get a picture of the crew standing in front of the firehouse. The Captain at the time said: "Sure, no problem". So he got the full crew to come out for the pose. The sun was shining and it was just right for taking the picture. As I went to take it, they all turned, pulled down their pants and gave me a "full moon shot" just as I went to snap the picture. I couldn"t believe it, right on a busy street. Those guys had class. They were the Greatest Firefighters the world had seen, but they loved playing games like little kids.  The picture came out Great too. I made a framed 8 x 10 of it, and hung it in a room of my house. (But not in the Living room like my other FDNY photo). My only regret now is that I no longer have that Great, one-of-a-kind photo, and that I should have made one picture up for the guys at the firehouse. 
  Today both "Tin Houses" are used by the FDNY as EMS Stations. The Bronx Tin House is now EMS Station 26 on Boston Rd and 169th St. The same original location it was first put in about 40 years ago. I believe the Brooklyn Tin House is also at the same location on Rockaway Ave, also as a FDNY EMS Station. They never did move those portable firehouses.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 15, 2009, 10:45:08 PM
In May, 1975, I was lucky enough to get a job in a career Fire Dept. I had what I considered to be a good job as a letter carrier, but I wanted to be a fireman. But to do that meant relocating another 75 miles farther away from New York City. It meant that I would Not be able to listen to the FDNY on the scanner like I had before when I was 60 miles from NY. Of course, I made the choice to take the Fire Dept job, but now I"d be 125 miles from the Busiest Fire Dept in the world. There were no on line live radio like today. No turning on the scanner at 2 PM or 2 AM and hear the constant action. In 1975, there sure was Plenty of Action.
   The Fire Dept schedule would allow me to make a buff trip about once a week. I was lucky enough to have a Great Loving wife that understood my hobby and how much I enjoyed going buffing. I would leave my house about 8 or 9 AM. Sometimes I wouldn"t get home until 2 or 3 AM, maybe even 4 AM the next morning. My wife would wake up and the first thing she would tell me is; "You need to go take a shower". The odor of smoke would fill our house. The inside of my car smelled of smoke, my clothes, my hair, everything. There is no question I had been in the area of a few fires.
   When I went on the Fire Dept, there were a few guys that had buffed a little bit in Boston. Boston would refer to their buffs as "Sparks". The guys asked me to join them to a trip to Boston. We went to a place in Boston on Mass Ave called "Whip City". It was actually a Howard Johnsons Restaurant that the "Sparks" hung out at. It was called "whip city" because most of the cars had those old long whip antennas used to monitor Boston on their low band at that time. (33.74 mhz). It was a good time and I caught a second alarm in Boston, and a fourth alarm in Chelsea, which borders Boston.
    It was then my turn to show the guys where I buff. We made our trip down to the South Bronx. This was maybe the summer of 1976. The South Bronx and other NYC neighborhoods were really burning. Each guy had given me about $3.00 for gas. That actually was quite a lot of gas money in those days. I was so sure that they would see fire, I told them, "if we don"t catch a job, I"ll refund all of you, Double your money". We"ll it didn"t take a long time to prove my point. We had just gotten to the New York City border on the New England Thruway, when the Bronx was transmitting a Third Alarm on Prospect Ave. In another 15 - 20 minutes, we were on the scene. Needless to say, my buddies were impressed. After that, it was about noon time and the day was still very young. At least I knew, I didn"t owe them any money now.
   As the day went on, we went from job to job. And I don"t think we left a three square mile area. Besides that, they saw cars on fire in the street, a few huge rubbish fires that from a few blocks away, looked like a building fire. In the end that day, we had caught a total of eleven jobs. They couldn"t believe it. At one job, we were able to get to the roof of an adjoining building from a neighbor next store. I think the reason for that is maybe they thought we were newspaper reporters doing a story on the fires. Why else would we be there, Right ! As we were on the roof of that building, a few blocks away smoke was rising from another building fire at the same time. That fire was in addition to the others we caught, but didn"t count it because we never went to it. Later that evening a few of us ended up riding with Eng 41 (now Sqd 41) on a couple of runs before we left to head home. I remember one of the runs was to Lincoln Hospital while it was being constructed. It hadn"t opened yet.
  My buddies that went that day had never seen anything like it. It was one of them that said to me; "it"s like they opened the gates and let us out". Of course as we left, we were still hearing jobs on the scanner in the car. Other cities like Boston, Newark, Jersey City were all catching jobs too. It was a very busy time for all cities. Those cities had their share of hero"s too. They had their "Greatest Generation of Firefighters" also that went from job to job . It"s just that it was on such a Massive scale in N.Y.C.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 17, 2009, 09:29:45 AM
  Fire Buffing was and still is my hobby. But for myself it had another benefit. When the "Busiest Fire Dept in the World" responds to so many fires, they get to learn "The Tricks of the Trade" by their own experience and initiative. Such was the case for the FDNY during the most historic times for fires in the history of America.
  One day while watching a job, and the aerial ladder was raised to the roof, I noticed a firefighter climbing the ladder with both hands free while bring up the roof power saw. I remember trying to carry a heavy power saw up a ladder myself and struggling with it. I watched this FDNY member carry that saw, hands free, with no problem. I was determined to find out how he did that. When things had calmed down, I went over to talk to the guy and find out what the secret was to making this job so much easier. He kinda chuckled as he showed me just a small sling attached with two snap clips to the saw. It was an inexpensive, much safer, much easier way of carrying those heavy saw"s up a ladder. I had never seen that before done by any dept. Today, I would think it"s just common policy for most dept"s to have their saw on a sling.
  One time I took a "pin job" in. A person was trapped in a car and Rescue 3 was on the scene. They were going to use the Hurst tool (Jaws of Life) to pop open the door and get the person out of the car. At that time I really don"t think many, if any ladder companies carried these tools. They were a great tool, but they sure were heavy in those days, and very tough to operate. As the tool was put to work I noticed two guys come over and place a pike pole under the jaws, while a guy on each end held onto it supporting the weight. It was just a simple maneuver that certainly made the job a lot easier.
   I remember a job in the Bronx. It was a fire on the top floor of a typical six story brick building. The windows that needed to be vented were in the rear and difficult to get to. Next thing I know, I hear glass breaking and see smoke and fire blowing out a few windows just as it should be, so the hose line could be moved in. A few more windows had to be vented. On the roof was a Firefighter throwing a halligan bar with a rope tied to it. He would throw the halligan reaching over the roof, breaking the window below. Then pull it back up using the rope and go to the next window. Just a simple idea to reach those tough to get windows.
  They would take an old truck tire tube, cut about one inch strips across the tubes, and use those large circular rubber bands to hold small portable lights onto their helmets. That way, every time you turned your head with your helmet on, the light would follow and point in the direction you were looking. They also used old seat belts from a car, and attached a small hand light to it. They would buckle that around their waist or cross it over their shoulder. This gave them another hands free source of light.
   Today, most of these things we just take for granted. Lights are attached to turnout gear, I think its pretty safe to say that heavy power saws now come equipped with a sling strap, and "Jaws of Life" today are much lighter than the first ones to come out 40 or so years ago. I think the jaws weighed 80 lbs in those 1970s.
    The guys that came up with these ideas to make the job easier were not really concerned about getting a "patent" for their work. They didn"t go around patting themselves on the back saying: "Look what I did". No, these guys were just a bunch of real hard working firefighters that were just trying to make the job more efficient and easier, at no expense to anyone but themselves.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 18, 2009, 11:15:36 PM
As the "War Years" continued, decent people were loosing their belongings and their homes. Innocent people were being hurt and even killed in these fires. People would sleep in their street clothes because they were afraid, their apartment or building would be next. The fire statics at the time for New York were "Staggering". Where once thriving occupied apartment buildings once stood, they were replaced by Vacant Burned out shells. The City"s tax base was dropping and during the peak of the fires, it was reported that The Bronx could no longer support its self with its desperately needed city services such as police and fire. As the fires continued, it was feared that the other Boros would no longer be able to provide its services. Factories, Stores, and businesses were also being lost to the arson resulting in lost taxes and lost jobs. The fires had started around the late 1960s and were now into the late 1970s. July of 1977 was no doubt the worst. Especially with the historic Blackout, and the Brooklyn Boro Call in Bushwick. Something just had to be done to try and slow this activity down. The City and people were desperate and things were completely "Out of Control".
   A program was started to put an Additional 300 more Fire Marshall"s on the streets. They basically would flood the busy areas of Bed-Sty., Bushwick, Brownsville of Brooklyn, the Lower East Side and Harlem of Manhatten, and the South and parts of the West Bronx. Their job was to investigate and follow up on every fire they possibility could. Building fires, car fires, any fire. They would seek out any witnesses. They would be identified by wearing "Red" Baseball Caps, and the program was to be called "The Red Cap Program". The big campaign was announced how The Red Caps will be out there to make as many arrest as possible to slow down the spread of fire. 
   The program started to work almost as soon as the Red Caps hit the streets. The month after the Red Caps were out there, fires took a dramatic drop. Fires were way down and I remember reading the Fire Bell Club Newsletter and seeing the Multiple Alarm fires drop almost in half. From the previous month of about 100. to now around 50 or 60. As time went on, the reduction in fires continued month after month. The Historic War Years appeared to be coming to an end.
    Now several buildings were starting to be rehabbed. These were buildings that had been completely fire damaged but were still solid enough to be remodeled and put back into livable real estate. But now, instead of using wooden studs covered with wood lathe and plaster, they were now reconstructing these buildings with "steel studs" and sheetrock. Now if a fire starts, under normal circumstances, a fire should be contained to just one apartment.
    Owner occupied single family raised ranch houses began popping up with fenced in yards and driveways in the area of Charlotte St and 170th St. This is where blocks of burned out six story brick apartment buildings once stood.
    As I look back at those busy years, it seems like it never really happened. But it had to change. When I used to look around at the size of New York City at the time, I just figured there was enough around to last my life time of buffing. But that was a long time ago. I now realize that it just couldn"t continue on the way it was. But it is about ten years of my life that I will Never Forget. I learned a lot watching those guys fighting fires. I would come home to my nice place and be very thankful for what I have, because I had just left a place where some of the poorest people lived. In my house I had heat in the winter, and air conditioning in the summer. In those neighborhoods, it wasn"t safe to go to the corner store at night. I remember waiting in the middle of the winter for an ambulance to take a poor old lady to the hospital, because she fell on the ice and hurt her back. It took an ambulance over one hour to get there because there were just so many more high priority calls going on, and no ambulance available. The Police were just as busy as the Fire Dept. And so were the hospital Emergency rooms. For me, it was the kind of education you couldn"t get from any book. For the Firefighters and Fire Dispatchers of the FDNY during those years, they were a special breed of people that showed what dedication really was all about.
   As I close, I hope everybody enjoyed reading these stories. They are true and all really happened. It was the busiest time for fires, and the FDNY was its leader. I would like to thank all those that contributed to these stories. Especially my friends guartarman314, r1smokeater, and old man johnd248. If anybody has any questions about those busy times, send me a "PM" or E-mail and I"ll do my best to answer them.
   I really enjoyed writing these. Thank You.
   
   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 19, 2009, 08:43:00 AM
I am really sorry, I forgot to Thank "vbcapt" for his great contrubition regarding the Web Site and photos of the Big Bushwick Boro Call in Brooklyn. A picture is worth a thousand words, and those pictures sure told the story, and brought back memories to anybody who remembered that. Thank you for putting that out for all to see.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: TDSW10 on May 19, 2009, 08:13:15 PM
I can't speak for the others but, I am enjoying the history lesson on the "WAR YEARS".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on May 19, 2009, 10:42:25 PM
You're very welcome !!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on May 21, 2009, 11:22:48 AM
Was Captain of 82 from 9/1/73 to 5/18/76. Your stories bring back a lot of memories. You mentioned Angies, the deli across the street from qtrs. They had a daughter around 18 at that time. Not that great looking. The yardstick for the guys was when she started to look good, it was time to transfer. One of the guys in 31 did marry her, I think the marriage didn't last long. They were nice people. To steal a phrase, it was the best of times, the worst of times.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 21, 2009, 12:19:27 PM
Capt, That is a "Great Story" from someone who actually was apart of it. Thank you very much for sharing that. I assume you"re retired now. Enjoy It !!!!! "You sure do Deserve It.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 23, 2009, 08:59:24 AM
I recently was very fortunate to be in contact with a retired member of the FDNY who was on the job in the South Bronx during those busy "War Years". He went on the job in 1960 where he worked a Manhatten Engine Company. There were 215 Engine Companies at that time. His company was the Ninth busiest in the City. They did 1,000 runs, of which 700 were workers. For the FDNY, the workers are considered any false alarm where they are first due, plus the car fires, rubbish fires, and structural fires.
  Ten Years later he was fighting fires in the South Bronx. Engine 82 was doing 10,000 runs, of which 2,000 were structural fires, "NOT" counting false alarms. On night tours they didn"t expect to sleep. It was "just the norm'. It would be 20-30 runs a night with 3-4 structural fires. He was injured a total of 37 times during those years, of which three were broken bones. When he went to the South Bronx, the 41st Police Pct "called Fort Apache" was a good block. Three years later, the Pct was the only building still standing intact. He explained to me that the "War Years' actually started around 1964 and ended around 1978.
  This is NOT my story, but a story told to me by one of "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters" that was actually there. I hope he doesn"t mind me sharing this with others. I appreciate him sharing it with me.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: dillondotcom on May 23, 2009, 11:50:24 AM
NFD2004 those were some great stories.  Thank you so much for sharing them, I really enjoyed reading them.  You wrote them so well that I could picture the events in my mind.  I am now a firefighter in the South Bronx and work in some of the areas you describe in your stories.  There are a few senior men left that were around for those days, or came on at the tail end of it.  And the stories they tell are very similar to yours.  It amazes me to think there was a time like that. They would tell me that when they went to work, it wasnt if they were going to a fire, but when, and how many. Again, thank you for taking the time to share your stories.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 23, 2009, 09:26:55 PM
dilliondotcom, I thank you very much for those comments. I wanted to share with others, what I was around to see. And to try to give some credit to the firefighters of those days that fought fires day after day. For me this is just words. But for those Firefighters of the FDNY, it was "Actions". Most people actually had "no idea" of the danger these guys were throwing themselves into day after day, night after night. Just recently on a buff trip, I was hanging around Crotona Park. An older gentleman started talking to me. (In fact he was almost as old as my friend "johnd248" who used to ride with E248). Anyway, he had lived on Fulton Ave in the Bronx and left in the early 60s. He had heard about the War Years Fires, but this was his first time back. We had a great conversation. He told me how it was then, and I told him some of my stories. We both sat on those benches at the tennis courts in Crotona Park for a few hours telling each other our own South Bronx experiences. I think I had even shut my scanner off at the time. That"s something I never do when I"m in the Bronx or the other Boro"s. It was just so interesting to hear him talk of The Bronx in those days. In such a short period of time it had changed so much.
  For any of the senior men around in your firehouse or the other companies, if they were around for the War Years, it didn"t matter what company they were in. Everybody caught work. With maybe few exceptions you would end up spending most nights in the busy area"s of the City because you would end up being relocated there. I always joked with my buddies, I said: "if I can get a few of these guys together, all they"d have to do is talk, and the beers are on me".
   Mr Dillion, you are on probadly the "BEST Fire Dept in the World". I know that because I still buff and see the job you and your brothers do. I think the busy "War Years" are History. I don"t think any department will ever come close to the workload of that time. I retired a few years ago from a small city in Connecticut. When I was on the job, "I Loved it". But now I"m on the outside looking in. I have the Highest Respect for the Firefighters of today, because, even in a small city, I know how tough and dangerous the job can be. I have a lot of friends out there on the job in various cities today. Now it is their turn to protect those citizens. It may not be the "War Years" but you can bet, the fires will continue.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on May 23, 2009, 09:44:00 PM
I remember going on a run in the late 60s with the 41st Battalion; it was really a 33 Batt. box but they were out and the 41 was special called.  It was a really long response and we arrived to a working fire in a two story PD.  As we arrived, neighbors stated they had not seen the occupant in a few days.  This was relayed to the truck companies for search purposes.  The chief and I entered the house and a truckie said: "she's over here."  I instinctly turned around and saw a balloon-type body, looking like a mannequin, on the living room couch.  The body had ballooned from all of the heat, but we couldn't determine whether she died as a result of the fire or prior to it.  The initial feeling was to feel sorry for the deceased but that soon faded as we walked through the rest of the house.  You couldn't put a foot down without stepping on a liquor bottle or beer can.  In the second floor bedroom, soiled sheets were taken to the foot of the bed but never actually removed.  On the bureau, the NY Daily News was open as if someone was in the middle of reading it, but it was two years old.  In all of my years of firefighting, it was the only fire death I ever experienced but I remember it to this day.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on May 23, 2009, 10:12:34 PM
   One of the programs that was instituted during the "War Years" was "Interchange" which had busy companies swap response districts with quieter ones. In the case of E60 & L17, we would see E260 and L117, Long Island City and Astoria units come in to spell them. I remember E94 getting relieved by either E295 or 297. On some of the busiest nights I remember E 143rd St. between Alexander and Willis Avenues lined up with apparatus from all over the city staged as 2nd, 3rd and even 4th sections of E60 and L17. This kind of "Staging" was also happening at E58/L26 and E82/L31.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 23, 2009, 11:04:45 PM
I remember hearing stories that when units were called by I believe, the Division Deputy Chief and asked how many runs they had the night before, the officers might have stretched the truth a little. To qualify for an "interchange" with a somewhat quieter company I believe the busy rig would have to do 20 runs the night before. Rumor has it that nobody from the busy company wanted to go to the slower company for the night. As a result, a lot of officers would tell the Deputy Chief, "I think we did 18 runs last night" or "I think we did 19 runs last night". So that way, they wouldn"t leave to exchange firehouses with the slower company on the Interchange. They didn"t want to leave the action. That is rumor that I had heard.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: svd385 on May 24, 2009, 02:48:18 AM
I started buffing in 1968 after joining the local Volly house that was still active in The Bronx.  At that time one of the people I hung out with introduced me to her uncle who was a FDNY Lieutenant, on light duty and was in charge of the Aux. Fire Corps in The Bronx.  He signed me up so I could officially ride.  Additionally he took me to a few different houses and introduced me to both the men and the officers, which opened several doors for chances to ride.  He also introduced me to one of the dispatchers at The Bronx Co., dispatcher #20 who was very active in the auxiliary as well and between them they would arrange, by invitation, training sessions with detailed MPO's and fire fighters who would bring the old CD Ward La France Engines for us to work with.  Between these 2 gentlemen and a few neighbors who were on the job opened riding opportunities at several different houses.  From late 1968 through 1977 when I moved from the city I rode with E96/L54, E94/L48, E64/L47, E89/L50 and E61.  I will always remember just how great a bunch of guys were in those houses and how well I was treated by them.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on May 24, 2009, 08:04:20 AM
Interchange.  Interchange started when the Chief of Department, John T. O'Hagan was invited to have dinner with the members of E82/L31, late 60's. O'Hagan was a friend of the Captain of 31 then, Bob Farrell. Farrell was a firefighter in L4 when O'Hagan was a BC in the 9th Batt. Farrell had rescued a trapped transit worker at a 5th alarm at the 42nd street subway during his time in L4. I believe he received the Bennett medal. The night "O'Hagan came for dinner the dinner never happened. The companies were in and out constantly, finally had a good job and never got to eat. This affected O'Hagan and the idea of interchange was born. It was runs and work time that triggered a interchange either that night or the next. I don't remember now what was what. When I was in 50 engine we would interchange with 43 engine on interchange. When I then went to 82 interchange was being used by the city to keep our workload down so the unions could not demand additional 2nd sections. It would go like this. Monday 6x9 we would interchange with E295 in Queens. Tuesday 6x9 Sq. 2 would run 1st section of 82 from 1900 to 0100 hours. Wednesday we would interchange with E297 in Queens on the 6x9. Thursday the Sq. would again be first up from 1900 to 0100 hours. This was all scheduled, we had no choice. On the nights Sq. ran first due for us we usually didn't see them much as they would be out at a job so we just ran as usual. Even with this work reduction program 82 was still doing 6-7,000 runs and 1700 hrs. of structural work time for the year. I didn't mind the interchange to much as I was studying for BC and the study time in Queens helped. They were interesting days.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 24, 2009, 08:56:13 AM
*******, Thank You for the info on the Interchange Program. I really wasn"t aware of how it started and how it was done. I didn"t realize that a schedule was set up, and the reason behind it. I"m glad you joined in. As I was sometimes referred to by a few coworkers in the firehouse as "Mister Buffster", even the "Buffster" himself, doesn"t have all the answers.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 24, 2009, 09:57:21 AM
Without getting in trouble here, I believe there is a series of Three DVDs (Vol 1, 2, 3) out there that can still be purchased from the "War Years". I don"t believe they have sound, but they do show some of the jobs during those days, with the equipment used during that time. I"m sure there are a few web sites out there where they can be purchased. I believe the entire set must be purchased together and probadly sells for about $80.00. I"m sorry to say though that "no profits go into my pocket".

    Correction on the above: I just played Vol 2 and it does have sound. Showed scenes from The Blackout 1977, plus a few other jobs around 1968. Interesting to see "no bunker gear, very few air packs, and some of the Greatest Generation of Chiefs and Firefighters in action".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on May 25, 2009, 09:12:48 PM
Another blast from the past.  While riding with Batt. 41 in Flatbush (Brooklyn) as the aide to the aide, we responded to a fire in Engine 250's first due area.  The fire was in a huge pile of debris outside an OMD.  The first floor tenant had renovated his apartment and put all of the debris outside, next to the building.  Somehow(??) the debris ignited and we used 2 and 2 to extinguish the fire.  The first due truck, Ladder 147, wanted to make entry into the first floor apartment to check for possible extention of the fire.  The tenant, proud of his newly spruced up home, refused to let the truck into the apartment.  The confrontation became rather vocal and loud with a certain amount of pushing and shoving.  The chief and I were in the hallway observing at this point.  The tenant was a rather short man of hispanic origin and was surrounded by an officer and six firefighters who were all over six feet tall.  The chief told me to go outside and see if there was a cop in front of the building; quite surprisingly there was and I asked him to come in for some assistance.  The cop walked up behind the tenant and tapped him on the shoulder; the tenant, who had reached his limit and assumed the person tapping him was another firefighter, whirled around and in one motion laid a punch on the chin of the policeman.  As the cop fell to the floor, the tenant was immediately pounced upon by the truckies.  When they were through, the mis-guided tenant was placed in handcuffs and hauled away.  You really had to be there to see the whole event; fortunately no firefighters were injured.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 25, 2009, 09:34:55 PM
Thanks John, that"s the story you told me the other day. I"m glad you told it here.
   Back in those busy day"s I"d get to see up close some of "The Best Truck Work" ever done on the roofs of those 5 and 6 brick "H" type MDs. I would usually go up to the Exposure 2 or 4 building roof area and from there see those Truckies really go to work with those saws and hooks. Hard to believe but, NO air packs, and some guys even had combat boots on instead of the 3/4 rubber boots. You"d hear 2 or 3 saws singing as they made the roof cuts and would make trench cuts. The guys with hooks would be pulling up the roof and pushing down the plaster. All this under a heavy smoke condition. Then you"d see the effects of the vent cuts as the smoke cleared and the flame would rise through the opening. In a few seconds later came a couple shots of water, and the flames disappeared under a white smoke cloud. These guys showed how ventilation should be done and the effects of good ventilation. Although there were books written on ventilation, and I"m sure some were Excellent, nothing showed anybody better than to watch these guys in Action. They sure knew how to do their stuff.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1261Truckie on May 30, 2009, 02:02:50 PM
To All,
I have been enjoying your stories and they all bring back meny memories. I was an Auxiliary with L-132 from June 1968 to Feb 1975 and saw our workload steadily rise during those years. If memory serves me correctly, 132 (even though very busy in their own area) was a leader in relocations (especially to 120, before they got TL).

I was riding the night Lt. Hamilton and FF Polera rescued the two guys from 219 out of the basement on Adlephi & Fulton. Heck of a rescue.

Glad to see the buffing spirit is still alive and well

Jim Boyle
aka 1261truckie
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on May 30, 2009, 02:09:22 PM
I knew an auxiliary at Ladder 132 way back and he became a dispatcher and served in the Brooklyn CO for many years.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 30, 2009, 02:22:29 PM
Of the many times I"ve been to some of these neighborhoods like The South Bronx or Bushwick, and the other Hot Spots, I can"t remember having any trouble with any of the people that lived there. Maybe we were just really lucky, but nobody bothered us. Either they thought we were reporters because we were carrying cameras, or maybe undercover cops, or that we were "Just Plain Crazy" to be there. These were probadly the WORST Neighborhoods in the Country. And there was no running away. Once you were in it, it stretched for blocks and blocks. But clearly, we were never looking for trouble. I"m sure if we were, we would have gotten it. That is EXCEPT for one time. And it wasn"t the people, it was the NYPD.
  We had had a pretty good day of buffing. We were right around the corner from Eng 82 and Lad 31s Qtrs in The Bronx. As it turned out, we had a friend of ours with us. He was a Career Firefighter in the State of Washington and had been home visiting family members in Connecticut. He asked to come with us because he had never been buffing The South Bronx. Of course he had heard Plenty about it. It was his first trip there and as usual, he came curious, and left astonished. But, it wasn"t only the fires. We were just getting ready to leave when the NYPD pulled us over. As they walked up to the car, they had the guns on us, and told us to get out of the car. I could feel him point the barrel right in the center of my back. It was between Christmas time and New Years. He told me, : "If I breath the wrong way, I won"t live to see New Years". They went through the entire car. There was also another NYPD car that pulled up too. They told us that they got a report of us dealing drugs down there. Whether they did or not, I certainly wasn"t going to argue with them. As it turned out, of course we didn"t have any drugs and they apologized to all of us. But they did suggest that we are in the wrong neighborhood and we should go back to Connecticut. I had NO TROUBLE complying with that.
  As for my friend from Washington State. He NEVER asked again about going to buff the FDNY.
   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Battalion4 on May 31, 2009, 09:39:22 AM
Hey 1261 Truckie, can you tell more of when Hamilton Rescued the engine guys from that basement fire?  It was full of tires wasn't it? I read that the ladder that they went down in warped from the heat when they finally came out? Where they in there long?

It's just amazing what they did in those days....Cottonduck coats, leather helmets and hip boots (optional!)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 31, 2009, 06:27:27 PM
Regarding the rescue that Lt Hamilton and FF Polera did, I believe that WNYF Magazine had done a story on that. As I remember Lt Hamilton received severe burns to his hands while performing this rescue. He was then unable to return to active fire duty and ended up spending his last year and a half teaching at the Fire Academy. I believe he then retired to Arizona. There have been some GREAT Super Human Rescues made over the years involving the FDNY. Each is a major story in itself. What Amazes me though is that we are still talking about this particular rescue which happened about 35-40 years ago. I wonder if both firefighters are still with us. They fought the fires during the busiest time for the FDNY. These two brave firefighters "High Light" what is meant by "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters". And there are plenty of other guys besides. I only wish that today they were able to tell us their story in their own words.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on June 02, 2009, 08:04:42 PM
Great stories......I am new to this site and enjoy the stories. Did some buffing myself in the 1980's. Yea, I realize I am not as seasoned as you "older guys" however, I am "hooked" as nfd put it. I especially like to hear about the "war years" and have had the privelidge to talk to DC Curly of Div. 6 (back in the day)!!  Please tells us more !!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 02, 2009, 09:48:11 PM
Just as a point of interest, I think when DC Curly of the Sixth Division retired, he became Chief of the U.S. Sub Base Fire Dept in Groton, Ct. From what I"ve been told, he always had a few stories to tell.
   One area that was really hopping in those busy War Years was the Lower East Side. Ave "A", "B", "C" etc. Rivington, Forsyte, Stanton. It was a smaller version of The South Bronx. It had the same burnt out buildings, abandoned cars, rubbish fires, and False Alarms as those busy Bronx Companies. Only this was confined to about a one square mile area. Those guys on E28/L11, E17/L18, and Battalon 4 sure got their share of the workload. I remember taking in a job there and it was the same type six brick MDs as in the Bronx. It was a good smokey job. The place really needed to be vented. This Big Barrel chested Battalion Chief, with his big thick handle bar mustache, wearing un-laced combat boots, a twisted white helmet, and wide open turn out coat gave me a little nod. Then over the handie talkie he says; "Come on guys, I don"t hear enough glass breaking". He then gave me a wink as to say; "Watch this". And then the glass came raining down. A couple of quick squirts of water and in about 5 minutes the fire was out. I"d have to guess it was maybe one or two apartments on one of the upper floors. I don"t think it even went to an all hands. Probadly 2 and 2, and the chief. Fighting fires was just so routine for these busy companies throughout the city. It amazes me to this day, now 35-40 years later, just how much fire these guys would put out without even thinking of getting more help.
   I was only a buff who was there maybe once a week. There were other buffs who saw this stuff just about everyday. I sit back and sometimes think to myself, I sure was born under the right stars. For anybody who had any interest in the Fire Dept, there was no place better to be. Just in my part time status, I probadly saw hundreds of fires. And there were Firefighters who spent half or three quarters of their entire career, fighting these fires during this so-called "War Years". They never knew what it was like to go to work in the firehouse and "NOT" Fight Fires. They NEVER had a quiet night. Not once a week, not once a month, "NEVER" !!!! That"s why I have to say, that They "ARE",,,, "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters" the World has ever seen.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kidfrmqns on June 04, 2009, 06:53:40 AM
I have been reading these stories from the begining of this thread. I would like to thank all of you guys for telling these stories, they are great! I only wish I was born 10 years earlier to be able to witness some these events. I can remember riding in the car to head upstate on the Deegan and seeing at least 6 or 7 columns of smoke rising over the Bronx on a weekend morning. To think about that day in and day out every day is amazing.

I spoke to a retired member who worked in the South Bronx in the late 60's, 70's and 80's. I asked him "did you EVER work a tour without going to a fire?" He looked at me and said "NO!! NEVER! It wouldn't be worth going to work if I didn't go to a fire."
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 04, 2009, 08:10:18 AM
Kidfrmqns, Well, Let me say Thank You to you too. That"s a GREAT Story. Yes, those guys just wanted to go to work and fight those fires. I could remember how the morale was extremely high, and they were such a tight group. They just took so much pride in what they did. Strange, but I have been in touch with a few of these guys from those busy times. They have been retired now for several years, but they Still talk about how much they loved it. They went to work in area"s that were probadly the worst conditions that existed in the United States. I think I"ve said before that the area was sometimes referred to as "A Third World Country". The conditions there were terrible. Huge piles of rubbish, rats, abandoned buildings, abandoned burnt out cars. Yet, these guys loved being there.
    A little story of my own. My wife and I had gone down to Washington, D.C. for a little vacation. Of course D.C. has its share of tough area"s. We made our vacation a combination tourism and buff trip. My wife decided she would rather go hanging around with me, then stay at the hotel pool. Just before leaving, I stopped at a Firehouse in a real tough area of D.C. to get a rig photo. The guys of course were great to us. We stayed there about two hours before we started to leave to go home. Believe me, this was one NASTY Neighborhood. My wife really didn"t have too much difficulty with that because she grew up in a pretty tough area in Bridgeport, Ct.
    As we were approaching the NY area, a large lit sign said: "Traffic Delays up to two hours ahead". No problem for me, I knew my way through the South Bronx streets, so we got off and proceeded to skip this long delay. It was a hot summer evening, and the streets were packed with people. It was like a big party was going on. I remember seeing a ladder company going through with air horns blasting, and siren wailing, as we were getting off the highway. We had gone about six or eight blocks and my wife suddenly said to me : "GET ME OUT OF HERE" !!! We had just left one of the Worst Neighborhoods in Washington, D.C. a few hours earlier, and she apparently had no problem dealing with that. But these South Bronx streets were a different story. It was completely "out of control". Just another routine evening in The South Bronx.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on June 04, 2009, 09:15:55 AM
I see that DC Curly's name mentioned above.  I recall one evening Chief Curly came into our (E82/L31) quarters. With the chief was a photographer from Life Magazine. This was 1974 or 75. Dennis Smith's book "Report From Engine 82" had been out for several months and was on the best seller list. The photographer had permission from downtown to take photo's of the members and quarters for a human interest spread in the magazine. As we lined up for roll call a first due box came in for both companies. We responded and the chief and photographer followed in the division car. An engine returning from a box in the vicinity saw the smoke from the fire and responded, they came in first. As we arrived I saw that the fire building was a 5 story occupied tenement. There was a front fire escape serving the two middle windows of the building. There were two windows to each side of the fire escape window. On the top floor exposure 2 side of the building a woman was dangling a small child out the window in front of her. Heavy smoke was coming from all 3 apartment windows with some fire at the fire escape window. The engine was stretching. As the aerial went up it would elevate and extend, but was jamming on rotation. I told my guys to get the net off our rig (only time in 37 years that I went to use the life net). A big problem was a front cellar entrance protected by a 6 foot metal picket fence directly under the fire apartments line. If the woman threw the child and it didn't clear the fence the child would be impaled, as would she if/when she jumped. Several hundred people were in the street, half yelling for her to throw the child the other half yelling for her to hold on. FF Tom Neary and his officer Lt. Butler entered the fire building and went to the top floor. Several other members of 31 went for their roof rope. The apartment was fully involved except for the corner of the end room in which the mother and child were in. The fire was out the apartment door into the public hallway. Neary and Butler without a mask or at that time bunker gear entered the apartment crawling. In the street I could see that the mother was about to throw the child, my net was not there yet. This whole sequence took about as long as it takes to read it. Suddenly a firefighter was seen to one side of the woman shielding her,it was Neary. A moment later Butler was on the other side. The tip of the aerial was now about 3 feet from the window. Butler took the child and dove onto the aerial. Neary then threw the woman onto the aerial. Neary then dove onto the aerial head first, his turnout coat was smoldering and his pants were on fire. All 4 went to the hospital with Butler and Neary placed on medical leave. Neary was out for a number of months with the leg burns. Both Butler and Neary received Class 1 awards by the FDNY. Class 1 awards are only given for rescues made under extreme danger. Neary received the FDNY's highest medal that year, the Bennett Medal, which is only given for a Class 1 rescue. That year with 12,000 FDNY members only 43 medals were presented, L31 received 4 of them. I went over to the Life Photographer after it was over and asked him did he get any shots of the rescue for the magazine, they would have been some pictures. He said he was so taken by what he was witnessing that he hadn't taken one picture, a shame.

Neary was promoted to Lt. a few years later and assigned to a ladder company in Harlem. Another fire and another child trapped in a burning apartment with a fully involved room blocking her rescue. Neary took a door from an adjoining apartment and laid on the floor and using the door as a shield slid across the room to the room where the child was trapped. Again no mask or bunker gear. He rescued the child and even though he was wearing gloves his hands were badly burned requiring again many months of medical leave. Neary received another Class 1 award and the Bennett Medal. He is only one or two of FDNY members in its history to recieve two Bennett Medals. Neary retired several years ago with the rank of Deputy Chief. 

Just one story of just one tour during that time.

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on June 04, 2009, 10:25:40 AM
On a lighter note...  In the late 1960's most all the Brooklyn auxiliaries got their training, as did I, out of the quarters of E280 (by Lt. Ben Poholsky) and in Richmond out of E159 (by Lt. Chris Caccese).  I once managed to horn in on some field training in Richmond and can remember us being in quarters of E159 one Saturday morning with a C.D. pumper.  E159 was out somewhere when a phone alarm came over the Voice Alarm for a house fire in their 1st due area.  We persuaded (begged) Lt. Caccese to let us respond with the C.D. pumper, which we did.  We were 1st to arrive, saw smoke, stretched a 2.5" line and put water on a fire on the 2nd floor of a vacant 2 story frame.  Boy, we young buffs had a blast and were really charged up for the rest of the day.  But the real firemen were not happy with us when they showed up.  Somehow the words "get the **** out of here" come to mind.   ;D


Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on June 04, 2009, 12:15:38 PM
My God, I read these stories and I get the chills. WOW had to be amazing to see in the flesh and blood.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on June 04, 2009, 01:17:12 PM
The FDNY had a very tough day back in April 20 1963.  Staten Island had several large brush fires operating and Brooklyn companies were flocking to SI.  I was not officially riding with Engine 248 then but I helped out at fires from time to time.  E248 was directed to relocate to SI and got three blocks from quarters to see heavy smoke pushing out the basement of a 6 brick OMD on the corner of Church and Ocean Avenues.  They called in the fire and went to work; the fire escalated to a fifth alarm and I helped pick up hose when the fire was under control.  Arriving back home ( four blocks from the fire), I heard on the fire radio of a fire at Linden Blvd. and Rockaway Avenue.  The first arriving engine was Engine 240 who had been relocated to Engine 257.  They were met by a huge fire condition with initial fire in an outdoor lumber yard and an auto salvage yard.  The salvage yard contained acetylene tanks which would heat up, take off like rockets, and start additional fire whereever they landed.  It was total chaos.  I grabbed a pair of work gloves (I didn't have turnout gear yet), hopped a city bus and rode out to the scene.  When I got there, the fire was in two city blocks and burning everything in sight.  There were limited companies available due to all of the other fire duty going on at the same time.  I ended up stretching several lines to buildings along with other auxiliaries and buffs.  Every once in a while, you would hear a noise and another tank would lift off.  Queens companies started to flow into the area and the fire was eventually brought under control.  I was wiped and couldn't wait to get home.
I just checked my supply of WNYF magazines and the second issue of 1963 has a good picture of this fire.  I have WNYFs going back to 1955.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years 4-20-63
Post by: grumpy grizzly on June 04, 2009, 04:44:03 PM
Info on April 20, 1963. Over 2000 calls were received in the 5 dispatch centers. While Staten Island was burning out of control there were other serious fires occurring in the city especally Brooklyn. On arrival at a fire scene that was totally out of control the chief officer asked  for a full fifth alarm assignment. In Bayonne New Jersey a large plastics plant was totally destroyed withno outside help available. At one time 80 engine companies were engaged in either fire supression or covering vacant houses. All engine companies but one were engaged in fighting simultaneous fires in one of the greatest tests in FDNY history. The following extra-alarms were transmitted in one four hour period. 11:47 33-8183 (Queens). 11:50 33-2163 (SI). 11:54 44-1543 (Brook). 12:01 33-1971 (Brook), 12:13 44-4026 (SI),12:30 55-4151 (SI), 12:50 55-1657 (Brook), 1:28 55-1703 (Brook), 1:50 33-100 (SI), 2:43 44-2952 (Bronx), 3:15 55-2125 (Brook) Info from Gus Johnsons  Fire buff handbook :)












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Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on June 04, 2009, 08:50:38 PM
At the fire on Linden and Rockaway, Brooklyn 55-2125, at one point, the Brooklyn dispatcher was so desperate for engine companies, he said: "Is any engine company in Brooklyn available?"  The first response was Engine 215, long since disbanded, from northern Greenpoint; they were told to take in the fire.  I can only imagine how it took to respond.

The same day, Squad 3 in Bed-Stuy came upon a fully involved dwelling somewhere around Lexington Avenue.  Squads back then drove panel trucks resembling bread delivery trucks; they had manpower and tools, but no pumps.  After requesting the box, the Squad was heard about half an hour later: "Squad 3 to Brooklyn, is anyone responding to this fire?"  The dispatcher said he was trying to find some available companies.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1261Truckie on June 05, 2009, 05:24:17 AM
That day I was hanging out in 280/132 (I hadn't begun to ride yet) and it was the first time I ever heard a dispatcher say "...are there any available units in the 15th, 12th or 10th divisions?"

The answer was silence indicating that no one was available. The picture in the 1963 WNYF is E-280 arriving at the job. 280 had been operating at Box 1703 and was reassigned to 2125.

Never heard so many bells. The dispatchers did a great job of maintaining order and the troops did a great job of putting out fire.

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 05, 2009, 09:48:00 AM
Reading about some of these stories sure brings back memories. I can remember hearing all the time, dispatchers saying things like: "Any trucks available in the Sixth Division", "Is there any Engine Company available in the Eleventh Division", or Any Engine Company available in the Bronx". This actually would happen quite often. And it didn"t matter if it was a weekend, or weekday, 1 AM or 1 PM. Generally speaking though, I think the nights were busier. But that"s just my own guess. It really didn"t matter what time of day or night it was.
   When I first started writing these stories, it was supposed to be about "My" Younger Buffing Days with the FDNY. But I soon realized while doing this, that the story really isn"t about "me". It really is about those Great Group of Firefighters who risked their lives every single day of the year, with "NO Let Up" to put those fires out and protect the people of that City. We need to remember what they did for that City during the busiest time in World History for fires. And we need to also remember those Fire Dispatchers during those busy years. They had no computers, and everything had to be done by hand. They had to decide which fire was the highest priority, answer each and every call, and somehow find the closest companies out there to send. For anybody who has ever done any fire dispatching, you know how it is when the phones light up for just "ONE" fire. Some of these places would see several in the same neighborhood.
   These people that did these jobs sure have my "HIGHEST RESPECT". And they earned it too.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on June 05, 2009, 10:29:22 AM
The old bell system: in my name at Engine 248, our primary boxes were in the 1000, 1500, 2400, and 3700 ranges.  We also had a few 2300, 3800, and 3900 boxes as well.  A zero was represented by ten bells.  We would sit, waiting for a box, and then the bell would ring; there was a selective alarm system so that most of the time you only heard boxes in your second alarm area.  If the first number was a one, we would wait to see if the second was a five or a ten.  If it was a five, we were almost certainly going.  The chairs would be pushed away from the table in the back room and we would be headed for the rig before the man on watch had time to announce the run.  What always seemed strange to me was how everyone had fine tuning in their ears at night when we were asleep in our bunks.  The same was true: if the first number stopped at two, you waited to see if the second number was a four.  If the bell kept ringing after the four, you automatically went back to sleep and never remembered hearing the box.  Multiple alarm fire were transmitted using the prefix for the borough, the level of alarm, and then the box number.  I was often amazed when I woke in the morning, went downstairs, and looked at the chalkboard.  I would see: 66-22-2358, 66-33-2358, 66-44-2358. I would realize their had been a fourth in the Bronx, but had no recollection of ever hearing the bells.  That was because if the first number was 6, we were going anywhere.

I also remember being at the Brooklyn CO helping out many times; I would file these strange metal cards with holes in them.  There was one for each box and they were filed numerically.  The holes decided which firehouses would receive the alarm from the selective alarm system.  When it got busy, the dispatchers would be pulling these metal cards as fast as possible and put them into a transmitting machine.  They didn't have time to put the cards back.  If it really, really got busy, they didn't use the cards and punched out the boxes manually.  In the firehouse, you could easily tell the difference between an automated transmission and a manual one because the manual ones were much faster.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1261Truckie on June 05, 2009, 01:31:46 PM
To All,

Got another one for "youse guys".

Hot August night, probably 1970. It's the 15th of the month and a full moon as well. I'm riding with 132 as the 6X9 starts with an all-hands in Brownsville. Someone else gets relocated to 120. I go to the store for the night's meal and by the time I get back to quarters (around 6:30), there are 4 all-hands going and we are now relocating to 120 (as 120's third section). When we get to 120's house, someone runs out and says "you're going to Herzl & either Newport or Lott". We can see the column of smoke from 120.
When we get there, it's a vacant building - fire on the first floor rear. E-249 had been relocated to 283 and had the first line on the fire. As we were getting ready to take up from that job, we get another one on Chester St. Top floor - vacant building. Plenty of fire and lots of smoke.
As we were finishing up there, a Battalion Chief approached our Lieutenant and said several other companies had been relocated to 120 after us, so he told us to return to our own quarters, wash up, have our meal and then to call 120 to see if they needed us back there. It was about 8:30 - 9:00 PM. So we went to our house and by the time we finished Brownsville had quieted down. Just another night in the 15th Division.

If anyone else remembers that night, please add on to this.

Regards,

Jim (aka 1261truckie)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on June 05, 2009, 01:48:24 PM
I'm Glad to hear that the dispatchers are also praised. SO much must go on behind the scenes. Its amazing you can request almost anything thats needed (porta johns,drinking water,or whatever else would be required at some long operations) and they will ALWAYS have an answer and usually find a way to get what the Chief needed. Hats off to them, considering no computers and like stated earlier the card system must of been confusing when busy.
  On a side note, when I hear brothers down here( Nashville) talk about there " War Years", makes me chuckle,to myself, still have respect for any senior guy from any Dept or Company. They might of had 3 fires at one time in the whole entire city. I try to explain to them about FDNY and the war years,but don't think they believe me. I grew up in Canarsie,Brooklyn from 77 to 96. All i can remember was 4th of July was fun for me to ride around on my bike and just wait for the smoke. Almost for sure the weeds were going to burn along the Belt Parkway or the Padergats. Watching 257 and 310 fighting what I thought was a massive brush fire for hours and they would let me help pack hose and I would ride home and fill up thermos with ice and water to give to the guys. I was like a 9 year old kid on my bike acting as a RAC unit.  :)
   Now I play them the old audios I find and watch them get the chills on there arms. They are amazed.
Thank you to all the dispatches for a great job and still continue to do a outstanding job.   RD
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 06, 2009, 09:45:22 AM
rdm258, Yes, those 4th of July"s. They are a story in itself. For anybody who wasn"t around for the busy "War Years", it"s the closest thing that I think can be compared to those Busy War Years. Right up until the late 90s, the 4th of July"s were Extremely busy. It would start around 9 PM and once the action started, it was non-stop until about 2-3 AM. All the Reserve Rigs would be manned (500 and 700 series). During the day, the City Parks would be jammed packed with people. Once the sun set, the party really began. Fireworks, M-80s, Cherry Bombs, I wouldn"t doubt even pieces of Dynamite, going off. I would ride through the streets and it was like riding in the middle of a "War Zone". We would have to keep all the windows in the car rolled up because of all the flying rockets taking off from one side of the street to another. Once it started the FDNY radio was non-stop. A lot of fires were started on the roofs because of the flying rockets. I remember catching five or six jobs, just in the Bronx, and that was pretty much all below Fordham Rd. The smell of smoke from the fires, and the smell of sulfur from all the fireworks covered the area. Some streets even got closed by the people themselves, as they took over to give their own fireworks display. Except for the Huge Celebration of Fireworks, the 4th of July"s were a taste of the War Years for the FDNY. What used to go on then, it showed what those FDNY members faced on a daily basis in those busy years.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 07, 2009, 05:42:41 PM
I talk about My Younger Buff Years and how lucky I was to be around to witness what went on during that very busy time for the FDNY. But one very important thing that I forgot to mention about. For this I apologize to the members of the FDNY that fought these fires for those 10 or 15 years. For me, it was just a hobby. But the sad truth is that you can"t fight that many fires and not have injuries. And I"m sure some very Serious injuries that members, and their families, are still paying the price for. They went to work to do their jobs of fighting fires. They were there to save lives. And that"s what they did. Behind all these stories, we need to remember that people got hurt. Firefighters and friends of Firefighters. It was nothing short of a War. Innocent people that had nothing to do with starting these fires also paid a price. It took it"s toll over the years.
  Lets not forget these people. I have a Great Respect for what I saw those Firefighters do. But remember, a lot of those guys got hurt. Most have families, kids, wife's, but they all paid the price when something went wrong.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on June 07, 2009, 07:27:58 PM
AMEN Brother. Perfectly stated!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 11, 2009, 12:05:29 PM
Around 1978 or so, things started to level off some for those South Bronx Companies. Don"t get me wrong, they were still fighting fires, just not at the huge pace they had been over the previous years. I guess that was probadly due to the increased number of Fire Marshalls that were put on, and the fact that blocks of buildings had been burned out, and were just gone or empty burned out shells.
  And sure enough, just as everyone had expected, the West Bronx was starting to pick up. Companies like E92/L44, E68/L49, E42/L56 (L56 was with E42 at that time), E48, E75/L33, and E43/L59 were showing signs of an approaching War Years II. Battalions 17, and 19 were becoming the busiest battalions. So it was time for me to learn a whole new set of streets. I don"t think I ever chased a fire, West of Webster Ave prior to that.
   My first trip to this strange land came right after a very serious fire that occurred on Morris Ave, just down the street from Eng 92s firehouse. I think about 25 civilians had been hurt, mostly from jumping out of the upper floor windows. I think it was around 167 St and Morris Ave. I remember stopping by the firehouse (92/44) and talking with a few guys about it. They had also told me how the work was starting to pick up in the area. They took me on a run with them, and on the way back they stopped by that fire. They showed me all the outside metal awnings with large dents in them where people had been jumping out of the windows onto those awnings.
   So my new hang out, became Teller Ave near Clairmont Park. I now had to learn a new set of streets. Grand Concourse, Jerome Ave, Walton Ave, Morris Ave, etc. Still, it wasn"t that bad to get over to 82s area, or other parts of the South Bronx. And this West Bronx area had the same conditions as the South Bronx. Occupied 5 and 6 Brick M.D.s, rows of Taxpayers, and some wood frames. The difference now was that these buildings had Not yet been burned out. But it was about to change as those companies begin the fight of the FDNY War Years II.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 14, 2009, 09:20:05 AM
As the War Years were starting to come to an end, several changes for the FDNY were starting to take place. Because of Budget cuts several companies had been closed down. Engine 85 from the "Tin House" had been closed and Ladder 59 had moved from the "Tin House" to Sedgewick Ave with Engine 43 where the activity was picking up. No more Tactical Control Units (TCUs) from 3 PM to 1 AM, No Manpower Squad Cos (The Bronx lost Sqd 2, Manhatten Sqd 1, and Brooklyn lost Sqds 3 and 4), The Super Pumper and Satellites were no longer manned. And No More Second Sections.
  The FDNY had been experimenting with a new color of Fire Apparatus. There had been studies done that a Lime Green color firetruck would be seen easier than a red firetruck, thereby reducing accidents. The FDNY had about 20 Mack Engines painted this color as a trial basis to see if this cut down on the amount of accidents. This was also becoming a trend throughout the country. Some cities like Boston and Newark even painted over their red fire trucks. In the Bronx, I remember Eng 41 (now Sqd 41), Eng 45, Eng 85, and Eng 94 (I think), were all the Lime Green Color.
  My favorite Lime Green Engine was Eng 45. They had a big picture of "Kermite the Frog" on it, and it said: "It"s Not Easy Being Green". I sure wish I had a few pictures of that, because it was such class, on such a busy outfit.
  Shortly after this the FDNY purchased several American La France Pumpers. Somebody on this site said about 80 of these, to be more accurate. The only Lime Green American La France Engine was Eng 65. All the rest were all painted Red. The FDNY was about to try another experiment. Remember, there was NO Air Conditioning in these rigs at the time. In the summer, riding in those rigs was really hot. As a result, several of these ALF Engines had their roof area"s painted "White". I think Eng 50 and 82 were two of them. It was hoped that the White Color Roof area would reflect some of the heat and this would make the cabs cooler. I would have to guess that it worked, because as a result, all the FDNY rigs have white roofs as of this date.
   And as far as the Lime Green went, I think the FDNY was the first to come out and say, there was no difference in apparatus accidents, red or Lime Green. (Some called it Slime Green). So much for the FDNY Green Fire Trucks.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on June 14, 2009, 04:07:38 PM
  There were 10 lime green Mack CF's that originally went to E10, 41, 42, 45, 46, 58, 85, 94, 236 & 277. Later on E73 & E263 received reassigned lime Macks. Engine 45, E46 and E10's [when it was reassigned to E4] were repainted white over red.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 14, 2009, 09:57:14 PM
Thanks Guitarman314 for giving us the complete line up of the FDNY Lime Green Pumpers. Now I remember seeing the other ones too. Mr Guitarman314 is a friend who I can tell you, could certainly tell a lot more stories than I can. He grew up and lived there. And let me say, during those busy War Years, we heard some of the very Best Fire Dispatchers the world has known. They may not know me, But I sure remember them. Even the Brothers on the FDNY had great respect for these guys. One name, Warren Fuchs, Brooklyn Dispatcher 120. Another great was, I believe his name is Herb Eysser, Manhatten Dispatcher 124 (I think). And of course, George M......, Brooklyn Dispatcher 247. I believe he is still on the job but has a different number. (Please forgive me George, I"m not sure on the spelling of your last name). But anybody who heard you, knows who I"m talking about. I"m sure there were many other Greats too. But I remember you guys. Thanks for doing such a Great Job, and we sure loved listening to ya. (I"m sorry if I messed up on any of the names I spelled).
   I"m sure guys like Guitarman, Johnd248, and a few others who have been around for awhile, and heard you, would also agree.
   And Thanks Guitarman for helping us out with the FDNY Lime Green Pumpers. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on June 14, 2009, 10:46:25 PM
Willie D- George Munsch was # 247 and is currently #102, showing his seniority on the job.  A long time friend of mine.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 15, 2009, 08:38:45 AM
Thanks John, I knew that you would know him. I hope he gets the message of what "us" buffs thought of him. My brother (georged4997), and I met him several years ago. A Great Guy and a Great Dispatcher.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on June 15, 2009, 03:53:01 PM
   At around 3 P.M. on a Sunday afternoon in the Summer of '69 I happened to be walking along E. 149th St. near St. Mary's Park when I saw a plume of smoke to the east. I could hear the sounds of sirens and airhorns in the distance so I start running towards it as Engine 41 and 41-2 pass me by. The fire was at Union Avenue & 151st St. and it involved a whole city block of mostly occupied 2-1/2 story frame buildings threatening two occupied 5-story brick tenements at the corners. I got there just as the 2nd alarm was called in and watched it go all the way to a 5th Alarm with special calls for Tower Ladders 14, 1 and the Super Pumper. This fire completely wiped out almost every house on Union and Tinton Avenues from 151st to 152nd Streets. By around 6 P.M. most of the buildings were leveled and the Super Pumper Tender tractor was uncoupled from its trailer and sent into the rubble where it resembled an army tank more than a fire truck as it maneuvered through the rubble firing water from its giant deck monitor. Ladders 17, 28, 31, 42 and 48 all had brand new 1968 and '69 American LaFrance rigs and there must've been 4 ladderpipes, one tower ladder, numerous master streams from Satellite 2, the Super Pumper Tender, portable stangs and multiversals in operation. Below is the correct [dated 8/69] box card for that incident showing both sections of E41 on the 1st alarm leaving normally 3rd due E83 home. BTW, back then Satellite 2 was quartered with E83 ;) so it didn't take long for it to get into this job.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 15, 2009, 04:26:07 PM
Yes, that amazes me that Eng 83 was not assigned even though a short distance away. For those who don"t know, Eng 83 is on 138th St, almost a straight shot up to 151st St where the fire was. Guitarman, I was not aware that they used to do that.
   And as far as the Super Tender Tractor section driving over rubble, to fight a fire with that Big Deck Gun mounted on it, I never saw that for myself, but I do remember seeing pictures of it. In fact one picture I think was in National Geographic Magazine. I remember it was a great color photo.
   And back in 1969 the only Tower Ladders were TL 1 and TL14. I guess those two units sure got a good work out in those days.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on June 15, 2009, 04:55:57 PM
  In those early tower ladder days most large outside fires were knocked down using ladderpipes and in the period just before this job and after the old water towers [1957-1969], there were not that many ladder companies equipped with ladderpipes. In fact, most wooden aerials didn't have ladderpipes and some metal aerials didn't have a ladderpipe at the fly ladder tip, only one mounted under the bed ladder. For some time until around 1964 Ladder 17 which was a busy company, only had a fixed ladderpipe under the bed ladder of its 1953 ALF 85 ft. aerial which meant that it only had a working height of 35 ft. Luckily, nearby companies like L29 & 42 had two ladderpipes. In the the Bronx, Ladders 32, 37, 46, 49, 50, 51 and 52 ran with 1955 FWD 75 ft. wooden aerials into the late 60's and even early 70's.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 17, 2009, 08:10:57 PM
Came across this the other day.
              "War Years" FDNY by Anthony O'Brien
   Sit down now and I"ll tell you a story. A story of Urban Hero"s and Glory
   The story"s of a war so cruel and deranged, about the men who fought and the lives they"ve changed.
   But these soldiers of war fight for no foreign shore, a world half way around.
   For the soldiers are firefighters, their home is their battleground.
   No guns in their palms, no hate in their mind. Just the will to help everyone of every kind.

   The Station sits still with the bay doors wide awake. The sounds of chaos are free from this place.
   The nine to fiver, the kids on the street, all mix in unison in the city like a beat.
   Then for a half a second, a sound stops all life. The single clang of a bell cuts the air like a knife.
   The house now shows bustle as the phone starts to ring, the watchman picks up with a mixed type of fling.
   "Engine, Truck - You"re Out" is the call suddenly told. the station erupts as a job soon unfolds.

   Helmets and coats all burnt and battered, soon feel the warmth of those who matter.
   Lights on, siren goes, the sound is echoed like the sound of woes.
   The smell in the air is perfectly clear, wood, plaster and paint, that burns with great fear.
   The signs in the sky show greater dispare, getting closer now they see smoke in the air.
   "Ready Lads", the Cap calls out, For today he knows there is work, no doubt.

   Turning the corner crowds gather fast, the block seems to turn to an ocean so fast.
   Rooftops become forts and tools of great carnage, off them comes molotov"s, bricks and garbage.
   "Why do they hate us" is sometimes the question, but the job goes on, no need for instruction.
   Two story brownstone, fully involved. All just another mystery to be solved.
   For here today, another arsonist will prevail.But for most, it"s just another Bronx Tale.

   These men are divided yet all closely bonded. Working together as smooth as a feather.
   Some men work with water, others with steel. They ride different rigs but arrive with the same feel.

   We"ll start with the Truckie, for he risks the most. Risking it all but never a boast.
   With iron in hand and can over shoulder, he mutters today "I"ll grow a bit bolder".
   Crawling down halls against searing heat, forces so great to knock a man off his feet.
   Cutting vents in the roof with tools and saw, so the others below can stretch without flaw.
   With tears from the smoke he stretches til done, knowing that life will not be lost on this run.

   His partner the engineman fights with no ladder or can, out with water every ember that he can.
   The elements are extreme and dangerously near, he battles so close flames whisper in his ears.
   Telling and showing tall tales of fear, a fear those men know will soon be clear.
   The flames show no mercy, but the nozzles wet diminishing flames in the blink of an eye.
   He batters and beats and curses the devil, bringing it down past his very level.
   Fighting his way past each burning floor, until the flames can hurt no one, no more.
   The smoke soon clears blackness to white, and hero"s emerge after their fight.

   Through the smoke on the street they appear one by one, the warmth on the street is perfect from the mid summer sun.
   The miles of hose could circle a state, twisting and turning like spaghetti on a plate.
   The pavement now covered from end to end, hoses,ash, and timber mix to blend.
   The story of this day will soon be forgotten, lost yet again and clearly forgotten.
   
   The War Years dragged on in a city of enmies, fires that raged in the 60s and 70s.
   Consumed city blocks and families abroad, were saved by these hero's never thanked or applaud.
   For NewYorkers had it hard in those trying years, for their brothers in L.A. and D.C. shed the same tears.
   One calm day all had come to an end, but the firefighters looked on ready to defend.
                                                    By Anthony O"Brien
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 18, 2009, 03:13:02 PM
Around 1978 statics and neighborhoods were starting to change. The area west of Webster Ave was now starting to see the most activity. Engines 75 and 92 both had the top spots for Runs and Workers. Eng 75 was in the top spot with 7,666 runs, while Eng 92 was in the top spot for workers with 6,400 times they operated. Eng 75 had 6,284 workers and Eng 92 made 7,469 runs. Both shared the Number 1 and 2 spots.
   As this was happening Eng 82, which had been the busiest Engine for a long time dropped down to the number 30th spot for runs 5,143, and 22nd spot for workers with 4,467. This was still a huge amount of activity, but it was beginning to show how things were changing.
   I now focused my time around the area of Eng 92 and Lad 44. The streets there were very similar to what 82/31 had before being burnt out. I certainly was not disappointed. I had gone down there to see the FDNY in action and they didn"t let me down. Although I wasn"t catching the fires of a few years earlier, there was still plenty left for these West Bronx companies left to do. Besides, I could still cover the old neighborhood without too much trouble. But the area between 92/44 and 75/33, and any companies near was sure catching it. As time went on, the area of Morris Ave and Sheriden Ave were beginning to look just like what I had seen happen in the South Bronx. I believe a documentary came out called: "Fire in the apartment next door". It showed the arson on Davidson Ave which was right around the corner from Eng 75/Lad 33 and B19. I had mentioned earlier in "My Younger Buff Years" how I sat across the street from Eng 75s quarters and they never went out for about four hours. That was about ten years earlier. But now it was a completely different story.
   But now another trend was starting to appear. The arson was starting to spread to other smaller cities. As an example, Bridgeport, Ct saw a HUGE increase in Arson between 1978 and the early 90s. Many of the people that were moving from the Bronx, were moving to Bridgeport. It wasn"t unusual for me to catch 3 or 4 jobs in the Bronx, then on the way home catch a job in Bridgeport off I-95. New Haven was the same story.
   Its just amazing on how many fires there were in those days. No doubt today better building codes and better arson detection plays a big roll in cutting down the number of fires. I remember seeing a Bronx tenement being rehabbed on Morris Ave after it was completely burned out. It was the first time I had ever seen steel studs being used covered with sheetrock. No more wooden studs covered with lath boards and plaster. Recently I was looking for a motel in the Bronx area. I was amazed to find a Days Inn Motel in the South Bronx at Brook and 164 Sts. If I am correct, I believe this was once an old vacant factory. I caught several jobs in this building over the years. It was piled with mattresses, old tires, and rubbish. Usually they would only use 2 and 2. But that was in the War Years. Today it is a Days INN advertised as a motel close to Yankee Stadium.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: svd385 on June 20, 2009, 01:00:58 AM
After reading through this thread, one story of mine comes to mind from mid June 1970.  I had been riding with the same group on one of the Hunts Point companies.  Up till this time I had been following all of the Auxiliary rules and confining my fireground activities to the outside of the fire buildings.  We caught a 2nd alarm fire in a six story walk-up this day.  As usual, with the heavy volume of fire the company stretched a 2.5" line to the third floor and knocked down the fire in the front 2 apartments.  This time instead of sending one of the crew down for that 1.5" black rubber hose for the overhaul and washdown the officer radioed the MPO to have me bring it up to the floor.  Following orders I carried it up and dropped it off and was turning to leave when I was told that since I brought it up it was only fair that I help them with the work.  They said they wanted to see how I handled myself.  Well I had a blast in the first apartment being the backup man on the line as they each took turns handling the nozzle in the first apartment.  When they backed the line out to go to the second apartment I was told it was my turn to take the knob.  I was in all my glory, and it was a bit hotter then I expected without someone in front of me shielding the heat as the Truckee's opened up the walls and ceilings.  After the first 2 rooms I was told to go out to the hall and take a blow.  When we finally picked up the Lt. I was riding with told me from then on I was to stick with the company unless he tells me otherwise.  I was accepted by this crew from then on and was told I had an open invitation to spend full shifts with them any time they worked and was also told a few days later by the Captain that the same thing held for his group and that it was ok'd by the BC. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 20, 2009, 08:28:17 AM
Thank You svd385 for that story. Its Great !  Sounds like you"ve been around for awhile too. In those busy days, if you were an Auxiliary Firefighter and a decent guy, you would be accepted and that was a real "Honor". It was an education that NO college to this day can ever offer. I have two friends that were Auxiliary Firefighters. One with Eng 83 and of course, johnd248 with Eng 248. They"re good guys and they also have told me a few stories. Unfortunately when the fiscal crisis came in the mid seventies, and 200 guys got laid off, with the closing of several companies, all ended for the FDNY Auxiliary Firefighters.
   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 20, 2009, 09:50:23 AM
On Page four of these "Younger Buff Stories" is a video sent to us by r1smokeater. It is Capt Ron Carritue of Ladder 112 talking about the Bushwick Firestorm Years. I would like to tell you a story about this FDNY Captain. I don"t know him, but I"d like to pass on what I read about him on another site.
  As I understand it he retired around March, 2009 after "40 Years" on the job. We know he grew up in that Bushwick section of Brooklyn. He spent his career fighting fires in that neighborhood. In 1973 he received a Medal from the FDNY for his actions. I"m not sure of the details, but I have to guess that it was "Above and Beyond".
  At another fire in Bushwick, he became aware of a firefighter in trouble. This was before the days of a FAST Co. Within about three minutes, he was dragging the firefighter out of the building. The only people aware of this were the other firefighters that were on the scene. No big fanfare, or bragging rights. According to these FDNY member stories, he"s always been a very humble person. Just doing his job.
  On one of those busy nights, he caught two working fires. Normally, for a busy Bushwick Ladder Co 112, that really wasn"t such Big News. But on that particular night, Capt Carritue made two separate rescues (Grabs), at those two separate fires. As I understand it, the firehouse has the newspaper article of the story on the Firehouse Wall. Two good grabs in one night.
  Capt Carritue spent his career in that same firehouse. But he was apparently known throughout the City, as many guys commented on his retirement. He had a reputation as a true gentleman, a good fireman, and a great officier. To leave a department of the size of FDNY with such a good reputation, is certainly an accomplishment. Capt Carritue has certainly earned his retirement. We wish him all the best and an enjoyable retirement.
   The only request Capt Carritue has, "would we all keep an eye open for his bicycle which was stolen from him as a kid in Bushwick". And hard to believe but as I understand it, the Capt of Eng 277, in the same house, actually has more time on the job than Capt Carritue"s 40 years.
   Thank You Capt Carritue for your years of service to the Citizens of New York. And Best Wishes on your retirement.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 22, 2009, 09:15:02 PM
In 1978/79 the areas of Battalions 17, and 19 were now the hot spots. Engs 42, 43, 48, 68, 75, 92, and Lads 33, 44, 49, and 56 were right up there usually in the top ten for Runs and Workers. Yes, there were alot of other companies like E96, or 290, doing plenty of Running. But for me, it seemed like the best area to hang out in. It wasn"t that big of an area to cover in square miles, and I could still go to places like E82s area, or futher south like 60/17 or 83/29 area. And it wasn"t too difficult to get to upper Harlem or Washington Heights. In fact, at this time Rescue 3 was in the quarters of Eng 93/Lad 45/ Batt 13, on 181st St. Sometimes Rescue 3 would be able to get in faster than the 2nd or 3rd due engines in The Bronx.
  The amount of fires were down from the Peak War Years, but there was still a good chance of catching at least one or two good jobs in this area. I would sometimes sit on Morris Ave, about two blocks up from the 92/44s firehouse. I can"t tell you how many times I would see that Eng 92 go out. It was mostly "ERS-no contact". That meant that somebody pushed the Fire Button on the street corner Emergency Reporting Box, but when the dispatcher answered "Where"s the Fire" ? He"d get no answer and have to send out the nearest Engine. I would see "92" go out and come back. Go out again, and come back, over and over again. And it certainly wasn"t just "92" doing it. Alot of others were facing the same problem. Anywhere there were the fairly new ERS Boxes. At that time they were NOT dispatched to EMS calls.
  Of course, there came the moments where "The House would go", Eng 92, Lad 44 and Batt 17. As they were leaving the firehouse I would hear: "Bronx Box ...., at .......Ave and .....St. Batt 17 we"ve filled it out, sounds like you"re going to work". If it was a job, finding a place to park and not blocking a hydrant or blocking the rigs from coming in was my biggest chore. If I had a few buddies with me I"d usually drop them off while I"d go to park the car. If I was lucky, I"d find a place right away. That was Great because as I"d be running down the street, I"d see the Tower Ladder going up, The Aerial Ladder going to the roof, Other rigs coming in with the sirens and air horns blasting, the saws starting up, glass breaking and the fireground handie talkie non stop as the attack began. If it was maybe one apartment, it wasn"t long before the shots of water was knocking the fire down. The dark smoke would quickly turn to white smoke. And usually, in about ten minutes, the fire would be knocked down. And that didn"t matter if it was the first floor or sixth floor. "These guys were good'. In a half hour or so, they were repacking the hose on the street.
   I have seen this repeated hundreds of times. Its the same today. If you plan on buffing the FDNY, you better know the area and be able to get to the job pretty quick. Because unless it goes to a really big job, the fire will be put out, the rigs will be back in quarters, and the streets will be right back to normal as if nothing happened.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on June 22, 2009, 10:12:37 PM
Interesting that nfd2004 singles out the Bronx for fire duty in 1979.  In runs for that year, 290, 332, 236, and 248 were all in the top ten in the city.  In workers in 1979, 290, 332, 283, 225, and 231 were all in the top ten.  As you know, all of these companies are in Brooklyn, the borough of fire.  The numbers for ladder companies are even more telling; they are dominated by Brooklyn ladder companies for both runs and workers, with little representation from Bronx trucks.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on June 22, 2009, 11:40:26 PM
There is an almost even proportion of engines and ladders in the Bronx and Manhattan while Brooklyn has many more engines to ladders. Thus, Brooklyn ladders get more work. For example, L-111 has E214, 217, 222, 227 & 235 to work with. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: scamall dubh on June 23, 2009, 07:24:22 AM
92/44 have been in the top ten pretty consistently for the last 30 years.

E92/L44/B17 = Great Shop.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 23, 2009, 08:33:58 AM
I probadly shouldn"t have singled out those Bronx Companies in that year. "Around 1978/79", I did spend most of my buffing time in that area of the Bronx. But I would still go to Brooklyn on occasions, just that for me, going to the Bronx was more convenient for being that I lived in Connecticut. Yes, in those years, I did spend time in the areas of E290, 332, 227, 231, 234, 214, 277 and 271. I know the area well and those are also some working outfits, including the trucks they are with. I certainly don"t mean to take away from those companies, and Yes, my very old, sometimes senile, friend, johnd248, is absolutely correct.
  For the next 20 years or so, I spent "MOST" of my buffing time in the area of the Bronx I was referring too. Every year, I would check the Runs and Workers, and on the average, the Best place for me to buff would be the 17th and 19th battalion areas.
  And to be more honest, being a somewhat "Cheap Character", the extra ride to Brooklyn meant more gas money, and the tolls crossing the bridges. ( I think they are $5.00 each way now-how do those New Yorkers do it ??? ). Or it meant driving down the FDR and crossing the Williamsburg, or Manhatten Bridge, dealing with a lot of traffic.
  As far as being a "Cheap Character", just check with my brother known as "georged4997" and he"ll tell you. Or check with my buddy "johnd248", I think the last time I saw him, we got into a dispute over who would pay for the Dunkin Donuts Coffee. Finally, we were ALL; myself, georged4997, and johnd248, escorted out of the business establishment by store security.
    "All right, now the World knows".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: georged4997 on June 23, 2009, 08:56:03 AM
you were escorted out. john dont listen what he says. hes whacky as a bed bug.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 23, 2009, 09:18:54 PM
During these years, there were very few manned special units, except for the Rescues. And at that time, there was NO Rescue 5. Other than that, maybe just Field Comm. Maybe there was a few more, but if so, I forget now just what. There were no Squad Companies, Tac Support Units, Rac Units, or Haz Mat. 
   I"d say in the early 80s, Haz Mat was becoming a big concern in alot of the larger cities. FDNY was no exception. It was decided that Rescue 4 members would be trained in Haz Mat work, and they started with having a second piece assigned to them. There was no separate Haz Mat Unit at the time. I think the first piece that they got was a former model city"s salvage truck. It was very similar at the time to what the former Fire Patrol Units were using. I remember Salvage 3 was in the Bronx and they operated out of the old Eng 48 Quarters on Webster Ave. The Model City"s Units would take care of Salvage work in Residential Buildings, while the Fire Patrol would take care of Salvage work in commerical buildings.
  So Rescue 4 became the first company to get involved with Haz Mat incidents. They would be special called with the second piece City wide. Later on, a Mack CF Pumper was converted to replace that former Salvage truck. That was the beginning before Haz Mat Co 1.
  Later Rescue 3 became the first company to set up a collapse unit. An older Mack "R" model became Rescue 3s second piece as its first collapse unit.
  Rescue 5 was born from another older Mack "R" model. It would be located in Staten Island with Eng 160. I remember driving out to that quarters and it was the first time I had ever gone that far out to Staten Island. It sure was a long ride for me. But this Mack "R" had been painted the new Red and White Color scheme and I sure wanted to get a picture of it. Of course the guys were Great and there was a parking lot across the street from the firehouse and they positioned the truck just the way I wanted it. Well that goes back a few years now. "I"m sure I was at least 50 lbs lighter then, and I sure had alot more hair too. People then thought I looked a lot more like Robert Redford, but now I look a lot more like the late Jackie Gleason, who played a Brooklyn Bus Driver in the Honeymooners Series".
  So was it that Rescue 5 and Haz Mat 1 was born. If anybody has those dates, I"d be interested in it. (Guitarman314, or Johnd248, can you help me out ?  ).
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: raybrag on June 23, 2009, 10:29:01 PM
Rescue 5 was originally activated on May 16, 1948, but was disbanded June 1, 1962. It was reactivated Aug 20, 1984.

See http://www.nyfd.com/rescue/rescue_5.html


Hazmat 1 was formed in 1984.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on June 23, 2009, 10:41:17 PM
   In its first incarnation Rescue 5 was actually manned by Ladder 78 meaning that L78 would assume the identity of R5 and during that time Staten Island would be short one ladder company. I was reading the original May 16, 1948 General Orders that said if L78 was at a job or relocated to another firehouse that they should return to their quarters and pick up the rescue rig and dispatchers would send another ladder to replace them.  ;) 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 24, 2009, 01:16:46 AM
I thank "raybrag" and "gman" for that info. Wow, 25 years ago. (1984). It sure doesn"t seem that long ago. Maybe I was more like 60 lbs lighter, rather than 50. Actually, I appreciate that. And I had no idea about Ladder 78 manning Rescue 5 in its earlier days. Back in 1984, I made a trip out to Los Angeles. I spent 3 days buffing and getting rig shots of L.A. City and 3 days doing the same with L.A. County. Things were so different there from the FDNY. There they had Task Force Assignments, (2 Engs and 1 Ladder), Lite Force Assignments (1 Eng and 1 Lad), Strike Teams (5 Engines). L.A. City was big on physical fitness and had mandatory physical training every morning after checking out the equipment. They of course were always responding to EMS calls. I remember Eng 46 and 33 in L.A. City were in the middle of the Watts area in South Central L.A. They did a lot of running, but in those 6 days I never caught a fire. There were a lot of strip mall shopping centers, but Watts was all one story single family homes. It was quite different from what I was familiar with in NYC. Of course the members were very good to me. I did spend some time with Eng 10/Truck 10 which was just outside of the downtown area. One guy in particular I got to be friends with. He was also a buff and collector of older fire collectibles. I think his first name was Mike and he was about my age. About a month later there"s a big high rise fire in downtown L.A. and I"m watching it on CNN News, while working at the firehouse. Who did I see sitting taking a break from the job, but my buddy Mike along with about 10 other L.A. City Guys. Of course I told the guys I was working with that I knew that guy. Of course, my boys just laughed it off. "Ya we know the guy sitting next to him" !!!! Just part of Firehouse life I guess. "I guess they didn"t believe me".
  But let me say, without trying to hurt The L.A City and County Brothers, I"m sure glad I get to buff the FDNY. No offense guys, I"m sure you do a good job, but my team is the FDNY.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 27, 2009, 08:42:58 PM
As the WAR YEARS were coming to an end, the view in most places were like the place had been "bombed-out". The South Bronx, Bed-Sty, Brownsville, Bushwick, Harlem and the Lower East Side were the hardest hit areas. But it wasn"t a bomb that caused this, it was from the staggerring amount of fire activity that had occurred over a short period of time. You could drive for blocks and see nothing but burned out shells of what were once thriving apartment buildings or business"s. It was like walking through a "Ghost Town". If you saw anybody, it was probadly a homeless drug user seeking shelter in these buildings. Or you"d see a poor starving dog with its rib bones showing. It was like these areas had become a Third World Country, right in the middle of the "Heartbeat of The World". Just a few short miles from the Wall St Financial Center of The World. A video posted earlier I believe by "r1smokeater" tells the story.
  There were companies where in their first due district, half to three quarters of the buildings were gone or abandoned burned out shells. Of course their runs went down. There was nothing left. I guess the City had basically wrote these area"s off. The police precinct (41st ? ) on Simpson St was once called "Fort Apache", now became "Little House on the Prairie". I think it was the retired Captain from Eng 82, who told us that as time went on, the police precinct was the only building left standing on Simpson St.
   For years, nothing was done. Just a wasteland in one of the richest cities in the World. Two Presidents had visited the area and walked among the rubble in disbelief. All with promises of good things to come. One large hand painted sign was on the upper walls of a Bronx tenement. It said: "We Are Still Here". Basically, the only ones that were still there were the homeless, drug users, the very poor who couldn"t move, and the firefighters and cops that made these areas their homes for 40 or so hours a week. Nobody cared and anybody that mattered, just buried their head in the sand, hoping it would all go away. Well, it did, after about 30 years. Today there is new buildings, rehabbed buildings, new businesses, new schools, parks, homes, apartments etc.
   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: fdce54 on June 27, 2009, 09:00:54 PM
I was from the more western areas of the Bronx. When I started my full time adult job in 1974, which I still hold to this day, I remember driving down Boston Rd from West Farms Rd and seeing the Charlotte St area for the first time. I could not believe what I was seeing. It was like looking at Dresden. It was a "No Man's Land." And a well kept secret. Harlem had Adam Clayton Powell screaming for it and Bed-Stuy had Shirley Chisholm bringing attention to it but the Bronx had nobody.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 29, 2009, 09:20:10 PM
The Most Famous Box in the World, espically during the Busy War years of the 1970s.
    Bronx Box 2743, Charlotte and 170 St.
      Engs 82, 85, 45,  Ladders 31, 59,  and Batt. 27...."That was Then". For then and Now, try this: http://www.ny1.com/Default.aspx?SecID=1000&ArID=51552 .
      Hope it works

   Go to : You Tube South Bronx Wolfen Charlotte Street 1981    ..... "For Then"
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on June 29, 2009, 09:32:29 PM
  Charlotte St? Back in the day, we would hear boxes like: 2743-Charlotte & 170 and know right away that there would be a big job. Buffing at 60/17 we heard that box come in so often that we didn't have to pull up the card because we already knew that 60 was 1st due on the 4th. And a couple of times that box went to 4 alarms. ;) 
   Dejavu all over again? ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: efd274 on July 02, 2009, 03:51:13 PM
Interesting tidbit - Dean Meminger from station NY 1 is the son of Dean Meminger of the Knicks, Marquette, and Rice HS!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 02, 2009, 09:04:38 PM
As things started to slow down a little bit, I started to see what the other areas of New York City was like. I was also getting interested in taking different types of apparatus photos. I made another trip to Staten Island. I wanted to get a photo of Tower Ladder 85 which was a new rig and the First Tower Ladder to be painted the Red/White colors, replacing the solid red rigs. What really caught my eye was the fact that this rig had several metal pump cans attached to the side of the rig. These were used for brush fires and in the areas I was familiar with, they really didn"t get brush fires. But I really didn"t see many 6 brick "H" type buildings out there.
   Another time, Queens had a Third Alarm. It was in a "Queen Anne" type building. Operating at this fire was Ladder Co 121 from Far Rockaway. This Tower Ladder had a Yellow Surf Board on the side of the rig. It was obvious that they respond to "Water Rescues" in their area. I had Never seen a Ladder Truck with a "Surf Board" on it. And at the time, with the Hundreds of fires that I buffed in the busiest areas of the City, I didn"t remember ever catching a "Queen Anne" frame building. There were also loads of 2 1/2 peaked frame dwellings. These were the type of buildings that I was familiar with where I worked.
    I remember talking with Warren Fuchs. I think at the time it was before he retired as a Brooklyn Fire Dispatcher. He was also a buff and I asked him where he thought the latest hot spot was to hang out. He told me, the area around Eng 275 is starting to pick up. This was before Ladder 133 was added with them. He said alot of those frames are "Packed with people". It was a new style of firefighting from what I had seen earlier on in the South Bronx with its 6 Bricks and Taxpayers, or the 3-4 story row frames of Bushwick. So I spent some time in that area too. Most of my time was still spent in the Bronx at the McDonald's on Webster Ave in the Bronx. But for a change of pace, I knew where I could buff and catch "Frames" instead of "Brick Dwellings".
   I guess the real point I"m trying to make is that whatever style of firefighting that somebody wanted to learn, the FDNY offers it. Whether its buffing the 6 Brick M.D.s, Rowframes, Private dwellings, Taxpayers, High Rises, Brownstones, Water Rescues, MVAs, Brush Fires, etc, etc. The FDNY offers it. As a buff, its certainly the place to see it. As a visiting firefighter that wants to learn, the FDNY shows the way to do it.
   I remember stopping in Ladder 33s Qtrs in the Bronx. My brother (georged4997) who was with me was a Lt on a pretty busy Rescue Co in Ct. He had responded to a call a few days earlier of what was called "Surfing the Elevator". Some of the kids would ride the tops of elevator cars, especially in the Housing Projects. Of course, it is a very dangerous thing to do and this time one of these "little angels" fell off the roof of the elevator car and was caught between the wall and the elevator car. He was talking to this average FDNY firefighter from Ladder 33, and the guy said to my brother: "Did you put a halligan bar between the gears of the elevator in case it started to move" ? For them apparently this was just an average call. The FDNY guy didn"t give it a second thought when he said this. Just a matter of routine I guess. But how many of us outside the FDNY have ever done this before. Like I say, "They know their stuff". It"s the place to buff and the place to Learn.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: georged4997 on July 02, 2009, 09:53:23 PM
riding the top of the elevator cars. two kids brother and sister , jumping the
roofs of the elevator cars. she got her foot caught between the wall and car
and was hanging upside down. that was the day we just got in the small
air bag. it was enough to move the car just over to release her. she had been dangling 4 stories up of a 8 story building.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 08, 2009, 12:31:20 AM
I found this on another Web Site, but I thought I"d pass it on here. Its from a guy who was there and knows what he"s talking about.
  Bronx Box 2323 at Cauldwell and 160 St was referred to as "Gasoline Alley". At the time there were several 6 and 7 story brick MDs there. In July, maybe 1971 there were 17 All Hands or Greater just at that one box location in one month. The Fire Statics for those War Years were "Staggering". For me, as just a buff, its hard to believe it actually happened. We"d go from one fire to another. Seeing a fire truck responding to a call was like seeing a taxi cab in Midtown Manhatten. Most people didn"t give it a second look. I wonder what the Bronx, or the other parts of New York City, would have looked like if the fires continued. I used to think that there would be enough left for me to buff in my life time. But on second thought, "Maybe Not".
   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on July 08, 2009, 07:26:09 AM
Another old goodie from the 60s: we had an all hands fire in a 4 story brick OMD in the area of Flatbush and Foster Avenues.  I was riding with Engine 248 and Battalion 41 had the fire.  I was in the hallway outside the fire apartment and a member of the NYPD told the chief he had taken a lot of smoke prior to FDNY's arrival.  He had been in the building alerting civilians about the fire.  At the time, only Battalions carried resuscitators.  The chief told me to take the cop outside to the Battalion rig and give him some oxygen.  I got out the resuscitator, plugged in the hose, and handed him the end of the hose with the mouthpiece attached.  He immediately started puffing away at the hose and said: "That's much better."  I looked and said: "Now, I will turn on the oxygen, let me know how much better it gets."  You shoulda seen the guys face!!!!!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 09, 2009, 09:01:47 PM
Another story about Bronx Box 2323, Cauldwell and 160 St. Its not my story but a well respected retired member of the FDNY who told this story, and I don"t think he will mind if I pass this on.
  While on the air with Eng 50, "dispatcher would say, "50 start out for Gasoline Alley". There were two sections of 50 then. The Box got Eng 50-1, Eng 50-2, Eng 73, Lad 19, and Lad 42. Had a Second or Third at the box one tour. We come back to quarters as a relocator Engine was there. As we get off the rig, 2323 comes in again. We look over that way and see a huge column of smoke. It went to a Second or Third. Burnt the whole neighborhood out in about two years. A lot of guys got injured from that box. Some had to even get off the job".
   From another member, "Same thing at Hoe and Aldus." "94, Start out for 2508, you know where it is".
   I remember riding by Aldus St, with another buff friend in my car. This guy spent more time down there than I did. He knew the streets and area much better than I did. Aldus St wasn"t a very big street, but whenever we"d ride by there, he"d say to me; "Willy, they been catching a lot of jobs on that street." When I"d ride down the street, I could see what he was talking about. A few jobs in the building on the right. Another job down the street. A job across the street. That"s the way it was.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on July 09, 2009, 09:27:46 PM
  What a coincidence  :o, as soon as you posted this a 10-75 came in for Hoe & Aldus box 2508,  go figure :D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 10, 2009, 08:53:37 AM
Guitarman314, "I"d say thats some pretty good timing". Next time I"m down there, I will take a ride down that street. It"s been a long time since I was there. I"m curious as to what it looks like today. I"m sure its a lot different from seeing the several burn outs of many years ago.
  Interesting that some of the busiest streets during the Busy War Years, were actually some of the smaller streets. Like Charlotte St, Aldus St, and Cauldwell Ave. Yes, the bigger streets of Boston Rd, Southern Blvd etc had their share of burned out buildings, but I think it was probadly more noticeable on the smaller streets because of the number of burn outs verses the number of buildings on the street. Driving on these streets and seeing half or more burn outs on a small single street certainly left even the most seasoned buffs astonished.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on July 10, 2009, 09:30:38 AM
  Talking about short streets, remember Crimmins Ave., Beekman Ave., Beech Terrace and Oak Terrace in the Mott Haven section?  Re Aldus St.: from 1976-78 I played on a Latin American softball team named for Aldus St. even though I actually lived on Grand Concourse & 196th St. We played many night games at Franz Ziegel Park opposite Cardinal Hayes HS.  My two most memorable events while playing there were hearing that Elvis had died and the Blackout of 1977.  I was playing rightfield in a tied league play-off game that some of the locals had bet money on. When the lights went out they told us to stay on the field and continue playing. We did for about 15 minutes then we heard noise, commotion and sirens to the east around the Melrose area and some kid on a bike going down Grand Concourse yelling: "Repent sinners, it's the end of the world!". I got in my van and drove north to my home in what was then still a relatively "quiet" area.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on July 10, 2009, 11:29:49 AM
When that blackout occured was there a mandatory call in to work for the FF's and cops. Is that true that Yankee stadium was used as a holding cell for all the perps that were locked up. Thank you?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 12, 2009, 01:45:26 AM
rdm258, in response to your question regarding the Blackout of 1977, I believe there were over 2,000 arrest that night. Of course there should have been at least 10 or 20 times that, but it was just an impossible task to do. Every service was just so completely overwhelmed.
   I also somewhere remember hearing of Yankee Stadium becoming a temporary cell block but at this point, I can"t really confirm that. As far as calling in off duty firefighters, I believe that did happen. As soon as I can, I will check out a book I have called "Blackout looting". It pretty much has all the facts in there of what went on.
   Guitarman314, yes streets like Crimmins Ave, Beekman Ave etc, do have that familiar ring to them also. I kinda remember a few of those 10-30s (working fire, requesting 2 Engs, 2 Lads, and Chief), and 10-75s on those streets too. And if I was there (Bronx) when the lights went out, and some guy was riding a bicycle yelling; "Repent Sinners, It"s the end of the world", I"d probadly believe him. Scarey thought to be in those neighborhoods with the lights out.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on July 12, 2009, 02:28:18 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UAI2gzf0mw    figured was around the same time that refer to the War years
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 12, 2009, 05:36:27 PM
  "rdm258" let me Thank you for putting "The Bronx is Burning" on "My Younger Buff Years". Yes, for me, "this is where it all began". When Buffs and Firefighters talk about the busy "War Years", this is what most think of. Eng 82, Lad 31 and Batt. 27. It was probadly the most famous firehouse in the World. Dennis Smith wrote his best selling book "Report from Engine 82" based on his experience working there. Everyone of those Firefighters you see there were "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters" ever known. They would be out most of the night fighting fires or chasing false alarms. In busy houses like this, if you got to eat your evening meal about 3 AM you considered yourself pretty lucky. I believe it is said in part of the entire program, "in one entire month, Eng 82 never got to finish their entire meal without getting called out". In my opinion, not only were they the "Greatest Generation of Firefighters", but they "WERE THE GREATEST GENERATION"- - - - "PERIOD". As kids they grew up in the Great Depression. Later they fought World War II, and they came back and "Built America". They were tough guys and very seldom complained. They truly were Americas Heroes. They didn"t look for self gratification, only to do their job and go home to their families. You talk about "Role Models", these guys were the real Role Models. Not some guy that could hit a baseball, or some drugged out Hollywood Star.
   When I started writing this, I wanted to try and tell my story as a young guy who chased fire trucks in New York City as a hobby. But I also wanted to let people know what this group of Firefighters did over and over again, under some of the worst, most dangerous conditions any Firefighter could face. While fighting fires will probadly never be a safe job, it was these guys that faced this danger all too often. "Lets Not ever forget them".
    Thanks rdm258. And for anybody that doesn"t know, this is just a small segment of a documentary that was made back in the 1970s. The total program runs about 45 minutes (?) and is called : "The Bronx is burning". I understand, sometimes you can still pick up a DVD of the complete program. (see History on this site).
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: patrickfd on July 12, 2009, 09:18:05 PM
I picked up a copy of The Bronx is Burning on ebay. I had started by buffing career in the war years with my dad by hanging out at E-231, L-120 sitting on the box out front waiting for them to go out. Then going over to Squad 4 on Bristol St with E-283. A very eye opening experience for a 9 y/o kid. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: efd274 on July 12, 2009, 09:26:44 PM
nfd2004 - I second what you said - the "bar" was at its highest back then! These guys always did the right thing - it was second nature to them - part of the Greatest Generation as Tom Brakaw wrote
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 13, 2009, 09:40:12 AM
Today, "July 13, 2009" we look back to "July 13, 1977" exactly 32 years ago. It began as a very hot humid day, similar to what it had been like for the previous ten days. New Yorkers did basically what they would normally do, but had no idea of what they would be in for within a few short hours. When the sun set that evening and the clock hit about 9:30 PM, all electricity for the City of New York was lost. Lights out, elevators stuck, subways stopped. No one expected what would happen over the next 25 hours. It would go down in the history books as the busiest time for the FDNY.
   Could that happen again ? Let"s certainly hope not. But if the lights ever did go out again, I wonder what would happen today ? Would it be a repeat of the Blackout of November, 1965 where everybody pretty much behaved themselves and for some, there was a Baby Boom nine months later, or would it be similar to what went on back then those 32 years ago in 1977 ? What do you think ? ? ?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on July 13, 2009, 01:08:39 PM
Today, "July 13, 2009" we look back to "July 13, 1977" exactly 32 years ago. It began as a very hot humid day, similar to what it had been like for the previous ten days. New Yorkers did basically what they would normally do, but had no idea of what they would be in for within a few short hours. When the sun set that evening and the clock hit about 9:30 PM, all electricity for the City of New York was lost. Lights out, elevators stuck, subways stopped. No one expected what would happen over the next 25 hours. It would go down in the history books as the busiest time for the FDNY.
  could that happen again ? Let"s certainly hope not. But if the lights ever did go out again, I wonder what would happen today ? Would it be a repeat of the Blackout of November, 1965 where everybody pretty much behaved themselves and for some, there was a Baby Boom nine months later, or would it be similar to what went on back then those 32 years ago in 1977 ? What do you think ? ? ?

I'm an optimist and look for the good in people. I think more like 1965.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on July 13, 2009, 01:31:46 PM
   There was an August blackout a couple of years ago that wasn't so bad and a few years before that there was another on in late December related to a Con Ed gas plant fire in Port Morris, Bronx.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: efd274 on July 13, 2009, 04:14:47 PM
I'm pragmatic - be ready for all circumstances and deal with it accordingly!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 13, 2009, 07:19:29 PM
Guitarman314, I remember that Blackout in August a few years ago very well. I was buffing the Bronx that day. It was about 4:30 - 5:00 PM when I noticed that the traffic lights weren"t working. My gas tank was pretty empty, but so was my belly. I was on Boston Rd near Baychester and Gun Hill Rd areas. I had planned on hitting a fast food place for a quick bite. Then I noticed a lot of the businesses closing up and pulling down their roll down steel fronts. I remember hearing something over Manhatten radio about no traffic lights were working in the area there too. The dispatcher then stated something about a power failure throughout the City. But now I couldn"t get gas either. I ended up leaving the Bronx and made it to my mother-in-laws house some 50 miles away. And when I got there, they had power so I filled up the tank and headed home.
   For me it was a lesson learned. Now, everytime I get to a half tank of gas, I fill it up. especially if I"m buffing in NYC.
   I remember reading latter how the FDNY was able to put in service the second piece of the SOC Ladder Cos with a three man crew. And they were able to take care of the many people in stuck elevators or trapped in trains etc. I believe it was the first time these units had be manned separately. I"m sure they did the same with other second pieces. One thing that was in the FDNYs favor was that it happened around the time the on coming night shift was reporting for work.
   I never really did get to finish my buff day. Yes, it was fairly quiet, especially compared to the Blackout of 1977. Of course the activity did pick up but not so much because of looting or arson. The extra fires they had were more caused from burning candles etc. Accidental type stuff.
  I didn"t know it that day, but I had a elderly friend (He"s got me beat by 20 years, and thats old), who took the train down to buff the Midtown Manhatten area because he doesn"t drive. When the power went off, no trains or subways could leave Manhatten. So a lot of people slept either on a park bench or on a piece of cardboard. He told me: "that night there was no rich or poor". "Everybody slept out on a bench or on a piece cardboard whether you were a millionaire Wall St CEO, or the homeless guy without two Nickel's in his pocket". Everybody was "EQUAL" that night ! ! !
  And who can forget that massive Con Ed Gas Explosion in Port Morris, Bronx a few years earlier. Thats where the huge Fireball made the FDNY trucks look like they were toys. I believe one of our members "fdce54" was there at the time. Just a few weeks ago, I was in contact with him and we talked about it.
  Thanks G-man for reminding us of that. I for one remember them well.
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on July 13, 2009, 07:50:13 PM
  I remember the Con Ed fire was a 5th Alarmer around 1 PM on Friday December 29, 1989. The box was 2118 at Locust & 134th and I was driving to work at the Westbury Music Fair and I was southbound on the Bx. River Pkwy. near the Cross Bronx when I saw the flames in the distance. I was going to take the Cross Bx. east towards the Throgs Neck or Whitestone but those flames changed my plans. I took the Sheridan down to the Bruckner, got off at the 138th St. exit and got to see it just as the 2nd alarm was struck. The sound coming from that broken gas main was like that of being directly behind a jet engine on the deck of an aircraft carrier. To this day, that is the most flame I've ever seen.   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 13, 2009, 10:26:49 PM
Over the years, I have done my share of buffing. There are other tough cities out there that certainly do their share of work, even to this day. The Detroit's, the Newarks, The D.Cs., Boston, Jersey City, Yonkers, Philly, Cleveland, Hartford, Bridgeport, and one of my favorites, Providence, R.I. I could go on and on. Theres a lot more too. They all had their own War Year Era"s. They also had their own Greatest Generation of Firefighters. In my own selfish way, I"m proud to say that my father and brother were a part of that.
   But throughout it all, the one dept that always had that exceptional Big or Tough job was the FDNY. Just by its sheer size, and the conditions that exist there, the FDNY will always be at the top. As an example, in my own State of Connecticut, we have two area codes for the entire state. New York City, by itself has four. New York City has about three times the entire population of Connecticut. No wonder its such a busy dept. with its spectacular fires.
   One such fire occurred several years ago in the Boro of Brooklyn. (No, The Bronx isn"t the only place in NYC that catches fires). That fire was in a large hotel. I think it was vacant, but not sure. I believe it was like 18 stories, fully involved. I remember one of the streets as Pineapple St. I"m sure "johnnyd248" or "G-man314" can help me out on this. I also believe there may have been a CD recording of the radio traffic that was offered for sale. It was a Huge job with several companies assigned for brand patrol, as I think it was a very windy night. I forget the name of the hotel and if it was vacant or not, but it sure was a Big job.
   P.S. - "Let"s hear it for the Brothers out there in Brooklyn". "You got a few Tough outfits out there too."
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: MichaelS on July 13, 2009, 10:32:28 PM
http://www.fdnewyork.com/stgeorge.asp
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 13, 2009, 10:49:58 PM
St. George Hotel. That"s the one I was referring to. Thank you MichaelS. And that FDNEWYORK.com has a great story on it.
  Another thing I would like to point out, if I may. A friend has put several rig shot photos that I took over the years on a site called www.emtbravo.com. There are also a few in the beginning by another buff. If you want to check them out, I think they are under "Protection from the Past". Go to "FDNY Old Apparatus". They are posted by "r1smokeater".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on July 13, 2009, 11:42:40 PM
Bill: the St. George Hotel was the one that went to 16 or so alarms that had to be given 3 separate boxes?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 14, 2009, 07:55:12 AM
Deano, (vbcapt),yes, I do somewhat remember three seperate boxes being sent out for this job. I think one was just for brand patrol. A serious exposure problem as I remember. And it wasn"t a 18 story building fully involved, but "ONLY" a 10 story with fire in several exposures. Yes, that was a Big One. Thanks Deano.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on July 14, 2009, 08:23:49 AM
I mentioned in a different thread about having to use Engine 244's Ward LaFrance relic because they needed our Mack with an enclosed cab.  One evening Engine 248 was responding south on Nostrand Avenue around Clarendon Road with five of us on the back step.  A car ran a red light and hit us just as the chauffeur was trying to evade the car.  The result was the car hit us on the left front bumper, glanced off the rig, flew through the intersection, and crashed inside a storefront on Nostrand Avenue.  The impact of the crash was pretty severe; we did a small spin and everybody held on to the rig and each other.  Six people in the car were injured.  There were no injuries and little damage to the old Ward LaFrance.  We all wondered if the same would have been true if we had our regular Mack.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on July 14, 2009, 09:35:21 AM
   I don't know about the Mack C's but the CF's were pretty good collisionwise. I remember E73 getting hit by a gypsy cab at Prospect and 155 causing the rig to mount the sidewalk and take down a 20 ft. wide brick wall at a day care center. That rig still looked driveable. Another tough truck was L17's old 1953 ALF which had an accident at Willis & 141st where a gypsy cab (what else? ??? ::)) struck it on the front right corner and the bell rung from the impact and it sounded like a tuning fork. No damage, not even the eagle was disturbed while the Lincoln Town Car was removed in two pieces :D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on July 14, 2009, 01:38:49 PM
St. George Hotel. That"s the one I was referring to. Thank you MichaelS. And that FDNEWYORK.com has a great story on it.
  Another thing I would like to point out, if I may. A friend has put several rig shot photos that I took over the years on a site called www.emtbravo.com. There are also a few in the beginning by another buff. If you want to check them out, I think they are under "Protection from the Past". Go to "FDNY Old Apparatus". They are posted by "r1smokeater".

Remember it well.  We had our Junior prom there in 1960.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: efd274 on July 14, 2009, 03:10:53 PM
Do you remember who you took to the prom? I had the misfortune of going into the St. George hotel one evening in the early 80's as a client wanted to reminisce - I guarantee you they no longer had proms there
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on July 14, 2009, 04:39:11 PM
Do you remember who you took to the prom? I had the misfortune of going into the St. George hotel one evening in the early 80's as a client wanted to reminisce - I guarantee you they no longer had proms there

Yes, I remember who I took to the prom!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: efd274 on July 14, 2009, 06:19:54 PM
Just a little mental acuity check!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on July 14, 2009, 10:52:06 PM
http://www.fdnewyork.com/stgeorge.asp

This site has the story and the rundown.  There were units from every  borough, including SI and Da Bronx. They used most of the units in Division 11, several from D8 and D15.  Many companies came from Manhattan.  Interesting to see the response in 1995.  Would look very different today.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on July 14, 2009, 10:54:01 PM
Just found another story and some great pictures:

http://stevespak.com/66-18-461.html
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 14, 2009, 11:19:39 PM
kfd274, Both of those sites have some really great stories and Steve Spak has some great photos. The pictures really tell the story. Interesting, in the last photo standing in center is Fire Commissioner William Feehan, who lost his life on 9/11. In the same picture, it looks like Chief Ray Downey on the left, but its hard to tell. He also lost his life on 9/11. He was well known throughout the Fire Service. He played a Major role in the Oklahoma City Explosion which killed 169 people. He also started the US&R (Urban Search and Rescue) Task Forces throughout our country. But I can"t really confirm this is him. Either way, they were some of the Fire Depts Greatest.
  "KFD274", I greatly appreciate your help.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on July 15, 2009, 09:37:45 PM
kfd274, Both of those sites have some really great stories and Steve Spak has some great photos. The pictures really tell the story. Interesting, in the last photo standing in center is Fire Commissioner William Feehan, who lost his life on 9/11. In the same picture, it looks like Chief Ray Downey on the left, but its hard to tell. He also lost his life on 9/11. He was well known throughout the Fire Service. He played a Major role in the Oklahoma City Explosion which killed 169 people. He also started the US&R (Urban Search and Rescue) Task Forces throughout our country. But I can"t really confirm this is him. Either way, they were some of the Fire Depts Greatest.
  "KFD274", I greatly appreciate your help.

Yes nfd2004 your absolutely right about Ray Downey, he was internationally known in urban search and rescue.  I don't think it's him in these pix.  Bill Feehan was another giant. I believe that he had retired, and was asked to come back to the department because of his abilities and knowledge. He lived in Flushing where I grew up.  Great men taken to soon, but doing what they loved. RIP all 343.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 15, 2009, 10:52:31 PM
In My Younger Buff Years several times I mention about The Greatest Generation of Firefighters during the FDNY War Years. The two names above who we lost on September 11, 2001 in the Attack on America. Those two names, Commissioner William Feehan, and Chief Ray Downy, are "Perfect Examples" of The Greatest Generation of Firefighters. Both men fought the fires during the FDNY War Years.
  Commissioner William Feehan joined the Dept in 1959. Rose up through the ranks during the Busiest time for the FDNY. In 1991 he became the FDNYs 23rd Chief of Dept.
  Chief Ray Downy was a 39 year veteran member of the Dept. I believe he joined the Dept in 1962. He also rose up through the ranks during the busiest time for the FDNY. He was the most highly decorated member in FDNY History.
   These are the kind of hero's that fought fires on a daily basis during those historic busy times. They knew what it was like to finally sit down to the evening meal at 3 AM if they were lucky. Or to go from one call to another without getting back to the firehouse to change some wet clothes. Or to fight a building fire by themselves until another company was freed up to help them. No Fast Co., No Rac Unit, even sometimes No third or fourth engine.
   These are just Two of the 343 firefighters that lost their lives on that Terrible Day for America. These two hero's just happen to be the kind of firefighters we"ve been talking about on these 10 or 11 pages.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on July 16, 2009, 08:21:48 PM
In My Younger Buff Years several times I mention about The Greatest Generation of Firefighters during the FDNY War Years. The two names above who we lost on September 11, 2001 in the Attack on America. Those two names, Commissioner William Feehan, and Chief Ray Downy, are "Perfect Examples" of The Greatest Generation of Firefighters. Both men fought the fires during the FDNY War Years.
  Commissioner William Feehan joined the Dept in 1959. Rose up through the ranks during the Busiest time for the FDNY. In 1991 he became the FDNYs 23rd Chief of Dept.
  Chief Ray Downy was a 39 year veteran member of the Dept. I believe he joined the Dept in 1962. He also rose up through the ranks during the busiest time for the FDNY. He was the most highly decorated member in FDNY History.
   These are the kind of hero's that fought fires on a daily basis during those historic busy times. They knew what it was like to finally sit down to the evening meal at 3 AM if they were lucky. Or to go from one call to another without getting back to the firehouse to change some wet clothes. Or to fight a building fire by themselves until another company was freed up to help them. No Fast Co., No Rac Unit, even sometimes No third or fourth engine.
   These are just Two of the 343 firefighters that lost their lives on that Terrible Day for America. These two hero's just happen to be the kind of firefighters we"ve been talking about on these 10 or 11 pages.

Amen nfd2004.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 21, 2009, 08:49:08 AM
  From the retired Capt of Engine 82, who was also a Lt with Engine 50 before that during The War Years. He states that of all the busy boxes that he responded to, for some reason Box 2508 at Hoe and Aldus, the people were the "Worst". They would often throw things from the rooftops and the Engine would have to back out. He would like to go back there to see what it looks like today, But he says some old geezer would probadly recognize him from years ago, and start throwing things at him again. "For some reason that was a Nasty street back then".
  Well, I hope to visit the area on my next trip to see what it looks like now. I just hope that old Geezer doesn"t remember me and start throwing that s**t at me.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 31, 2009, 10:15:24 PM
From around the 1980s to 2001, when I"d first get to NYC around noon time, I would head to the Fire Academy (called: The Rock). There I was able to get numerous rig shots,(some on www.emtbravo.net, "Protection from the Past"), plus watch the Training activities going on. It was a good place to learn just from watching. And I could still take in the jobs in Harlem or the Bronx just by getting onto the Triboro Bridge, then going onto the Bruckner, Major Deegan, or Harlem River Dr. Yes, the Red Cap Program was working well in cutting down the fires, but STILL, there were plenty to see. Many times, I left the Rock and just followed the huge column of smoke. As long as there wasn"t too much traffic, I had no problems getting to the jobs. I"d usually stay at the Rock until about 3 PM, then head up to my Webster Ave McDonalds hang out. As I mentioned before it was a good place to catch work. I think my favorite company was Eng 92 and Lad 44, because I got to see them at so many jobs. But alot of other companies were catching it also. It was busy all the way up to Fordham Rd. During the War Years, most of the work was below the Cross Bronx Expressway, and then spread North to East Tremont Ave. By the 1980s, work was spreading up to the Fordham Rd area. Eng 88 and Lad 38 were getting their share of work also. I think one of the big differences that separated the War Years from the beginning 80s was that in the busy War Years, you could hang out at a busy company and pretty much catch a job or two. Later in the 1980s, the work was more spread out.
   The Bronx had Division 6, 7, and 9 (I think). But as best I could remember I only caught jobs with the 6th and 7th Divisions. Although I do remember catching a Second Alarm somewhere maybe Bronxwood and 215th St or White Plains Rd and 215th St area. And that was only because I was on my way home. Otherwise I never went up that far, even if there was a job.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 01, 2009, 02:01:18 PM
Found this of some Great Photos of jobs in the 1980s by Michael Dick. Hope it works. He also published a book called; "New Yorks Bravest, their lives on the line" in 1987. Yes, the FDNY fought fires then too. Same heat and smoke after The War Years. And as Mike says "the same dedication continues with the FDNY". Thanks Mike for allowing us to view these. They are Quite Impressive.
                            http://fdnysbravest.com/
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on August 01, 2009, 03:39:42 PM
 :)Speaking of books there are two relatively inexpensive books that are available from Acardia Books (www.arcadiapublishing.com).  One is New York City Firefighting 1901-2001 by Steven Scher (22.99) The other is Historic Fires of New York City by Corbett and Cannon (19.99) Both books are black and white 124-144 pages in length. 8)
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on August 01, 2009, 05:51:55 PM
Found this of some Great Photos of jobs in the 1980s by Michael Dick. Hope it works. He also published a book called; "New Yorks Bravest, their lives on the line" in 1987. Yes, the FDNY fought fires then too. Same heat and smoke after The War Years. And as Mike says "the same dedication continues with the FDNY". Thanks Mike for allowing us to view these. They are Quite Impressive.
                            http://fdnysbravest.com/

There are some great pictures displayed.  Check out the unusual Foam Truck, and L44 overurned on its right side.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: catry on August 01, 2009, 07:48:06 PM
That Foam truck looks like a Hi-Ex unit, one of those things that never actually worked.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on August 01, 2009, 10:44:09 PM
That Foam truck looks like a Hi-Ex unit, one of those things that never actually worked.

I think you might be right.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bulldog on August 01, 2009, 10:53:13 PM
That Foam truck looks like a Hi-Ex unit, one of those things that never actually worked.
I won't say they never actually worked.  They had very limited usage but there were certain situations where they worked very well.  The department I was in had one and several times it kept crews from taking the blow going into a limited access fire situation (usually basements).  Today they have been replaced by other technologies but when they were developed they were actually quite effective.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 02, 2009, 01:02:41 AM
That Foam truck looks like a Hi-Ex unit, one of those things that never actually worked.

I think you might be right.
  It IS the Hi-Ex Foam Unit which was mounted on a former 1969 Mack tractor
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 02, 2009, 08:50:32 AM
Yes, the Hi-Ex Foam Unit was not used very often. But it did work well when called. I remember one fire written up in an older WNYF Magazine and that unit played a key role in putting out that fire. The Hi-Ex Foam Unit was kept at the quarters of Eng 212 if I remember correctly. Also, as I remember, that was actually the only Foam Unit I remember the FDNY having at the time. The other Foam Units, as we know them today, didn"t come into service until later on. I think the next Foam Unit to come into service was Eng 71s or 73s(?) Articulating Squirt Unit, that was converted into a Foam Unit. As I remember it was quartered in a Station Island Firehouse. Maybe one of my "Over the Hill Friends" can help help out ! ! !  ???  ??? ???
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 02, 2009, 09:09:40 AM
Yes, the Hi-Ex Foam Unit was not used very often. But it did work well when called. I remember one fire written up in an older WNYF Magazine and that unit played a key role in putting out that fire. The Hi-Ex Foam Unit was kept at the quarters of Eng 212 if I remember correctly. Also, as I remember, that was actually the only Foam Unit I remember the FDNY having at the time. The other Foam Units, as we know them today, didn"t come into service until later on. I think the next Foam Unit to come into service was Eng 71s or 73s(?) Articulating Squirt Unit, that was converted into a Foam Unit. As I remember it was quartered in a Station Island Firehouse. Maybe one of my "Over the Hill Friends" can help help out ! ! !  ???  ??? ???
It was kept at E160 but I forgot if it was the former E71/E43 or the E310. Anyway, one became a Foam Squirt and the other was assigned as E70 (City Isl.) after being retrofitted with a Telesquirt.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 02, 2009, 09:24:03 AM
Thanks G-man for coming through. Now yes, I do remember that Foam Unit being kept at Eng 160. I was hoping one of those "Over the Hill Guys" would come through. We are all so lucky to have Those Old Guys on this site to help us out. :) I do believe somewhere on this web site is listed where the Squirt Units were first quartered as Engine Companies in History. Maybe under War Years Trivia.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on August 02, 2009, 09:32:50 AM
Yes, the Hi-Ex Foam Unit was not used very often. But it did work well when called. I remember one fire written up in an older WNYF Magazine and that unit played a key role in putting out that fire. The Hi-Ex Foam Unit was kept at the quarters of Eng 212 if I remember correctly. Also, as I remember, that was actually the only Foam Unit I remember the FDNY having at the time. The other Foam Units, as we know them today, didn"t come into service until later on. I think the next Foam Unit to come into service was Eng 71s or 73s(?) Articulating Squirt Unit, that was converted into a Foam Unit. As I remember it was quartered in a Station Island Firehouse. Maybe one of my "Over the Hill Friends" can help help out ! ! !  ???  ??? ???
It was kept at E160 but I forgot if it was the former E71/E43 or the E310. Anyway, one became a Foam Squirt and the other was assigned as E70 (City Isl.) after being retrofitted with a Telesquirt.

There are pictures of these "Squirts" in Wheels of the Bravest.  Two Mack CF 1000 GPM pumpers were delivered in 1970 equipped with 54' Squirt booms. The one shown went to E71 (page 166).  Later, as mentioned above, one went to E70 in 1976, (page 177).
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on August 02, 2009, 09:38:04 AM
Thanks G-man for coming through. Now yes, I do remember that Foam Unit being kept at Eng 160. I was hoping one of those "Over the Hill Guys" would come through. We are all so lucky to have Those Old Guys on this site to help us out. :) I do believe somewhere on this web site is listed where the Squirt Units were first quartered as Engine Companies in History. Maybe under War Years Trivia.

Found a picture of the foam unit in WOB on page 179.  Description reads "Shops utilized another of the 1969 Mack MB tractors to fabricate this High Expansion Foam Unit in 1977"
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on August 02, 2009, 09:39:59 AM
Squrts, one went to Engine 71. A October 1976 location chart shows one at Engine 70
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 02, 2009, 10:42:34 AM
Squrts, one went to Engine 71. A October 1976 location chart shows one at Engine 70
  The one that went to E71 was reassigned to E43 in 1974
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: raybrag on August 02, 2009, 12:36:06 PM
Hi-Ex foam is still used in certain situations (basements, for example), and some fire depts are still buying hi-ex equipment. Chicago, for instance, bought a new hi-ex truck in 2007.  Here's a link to another, in a volley dept in PA (3rd photo down on the left):  http://www.greensburgfire.org/Truck2/apparatus2.html
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: R1SmokeEater on August 04, 2009, 11:28:45 AM
Hi-Ex , Old Foam Squrt, Foam Tender.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 04, 2009, 12:23:03 PM
Hi-Ex , Old Foam Squrt, Foam Tender.


  Thanks "r1smokeater".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: R1SmokeEater on August 04, 2009, 01:43:36 PM
nfd, I was able to finally throw them up- I don't wanna clog up TB's board though.................
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 04, 2009, 06:10:47 PM
nfd, I was able to finally throw them up- I don't wanna clog up TB's board though.................


  Understood there Mr r1smokeater. And I guess if it wasn"t for TB, none of us would be here, right ! I believe you are referring to the Adm. of the site. Ouick side note, A while back I offered to send him a small donation to help pay for the site. He politely refused it. He said they make enough off the ads to cover the cost. How many people out there know anybody who would refuse that. Thanks again TB.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on August 04, 2009, 06:42:27 PM
nfd, I was able to finally throw them up- I don't wanna clog up TB's board though.................


  Understood there Mr r1smokeater. And I guess if it wasn"t for TB, none of us would be here, right ! I believe you are referring to the Adm. of the site. Ouick side note, A while back I offered to send him a small donation to help pay for the site. He politely refused it. He said they make enough off the ads to cover the cost. How many people out there know anybody who would refuse that. Thanks again TB.


Yes,  thanks Tom this is a great site.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: efd274 on August 04, 2009, 07:42:42 PM
I concur - thanks to TB are in order!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: FD347 on August 06, 2009, 01:36:36 PM
Here's where it all starts. More images here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/12533995@N02/sets/72157603941305234/ (http://www.flickr.com/photos/12533995@N02/sets/72157603941305234/)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on August 06, 2009, 02:24:49 PM
Absolutely awesome pictures of that grand technical masterpiece.  Recognized Steve Klein, Dan Buckley, George Muensch, and Waaaaaaaaren Fuchs, among others.  Brought back lots of memories of all the time I spent in the Bklyn CO.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on August 06, 2009, 02:44:10 PM
Back in the mid-60s when I worked in a bank at the corner of Flatbush and Church Avenues, it was customary for me to go down the street and have lunch at Engine 248.  During my lunch, the company and battalion responded to a box to the south along with Engine 255 and Ladder 157.  Since the alarm bells were still being utilized, I heard Engine 249 and Ladder 113 "tap out" on a verbal near their quarters.  Soon after, Engine 281 and Ladder 147 had a run of their own.  As I sat alone at the watch desk, an NYC Sanitation truck pulled up in front of quarters billowing smoke from the garbage area; it was very common in the day of incinerators in apartment houses for the garbage trucks to pick up hot garbage which could flare up.  The Sanit men ran to front door and were surprised to see an empty house.  I got on the department phone, identified myself, and advised the dispatcher of the situation.  I then waited and waited until Engine 240 showed up to extinguish the fire.  They were second due on the second alarm for our home box back then.  It just happened that everyone else was out on other calls.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 06, 2009, 05:15:40 PM
Here's where it all starts. More images here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/12533995@N02/sets/72157603941305234/ (http://www.flickr.com/photos/12533995@N02/sets/72157603941305234/)

  I would like to give a Special Thank You to "FD347" for posting these "GREAT PHOTOS" of the Brooklyn Central Office, proudly the home of some of the busiest and best Fire Dispatchers in the World. As most of us know, this Fire Dispatch Office was closed on June 3, 2008.
  You can read about this on this Web Site under "History Forums". Go to "Brooklyn C.O. closes......". I had the privilege of visiting this GREAT FIRE DISPATCH Communications Office. My first visit was sometime around 1975 and its one I Will Never Forget. I wrote about that visit in that Thread "Brooklyn C.O. Closes.....". It is Reply #12 posted on June 16, 2008.
  Thanks very much Frank.
  And Thanks Johnd248 for your Great story.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on August 06, 2009, 08:03:59 PM
Very nice Frank !! See if you can get a picture of the Yak, tell him he's famous, or is he camera shy?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: FD347 on August 06, 2009, 08:14:45 PM
Many years ago I thought about putting up a biography page for every dispatcher but nixed it when some of them didn't want their pictures made public. Pity.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: BronxFireRadio on August 06, 2009, 09:51:59 PM
Great pictures of an amazing piece of history, Frank. The equipment sure has changed over the years, as well as the haircuts.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 07, 2009, 12:24:54 PM
For those who don"t know, "BronxFireRadio" (above) has a good site of his own. It has a lot of Audio Sounds from both the Bronx Fire Communications Office, and also several Fireground Handie Talkie Communications between units operating. To get onto his site try : www.firegroundphotos.net/bronxco . Latest clips include the recent Tracy Towers Fire. Hope this works.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 08, 2009, 06:14:28 PM
I would like to Thank Everyone who contributed to "My Younger Buff Stories". It has now passed the 10,000 mark for views. It would be Number 1 on this site, except for that "Dang" - "FDNY New Rigs" Thread.
   I would Espically like to Thank, "r1smokeater" for his recent photos of the old Foam Units, and the two videos he submitted, one of Capt Ron Carritue - "The Bushwick Fire Storm Years", and the other, "Bronx, NYC".
   Also: "FD347" for his Great Photos of "The Boro of Fire", Brooklyn Fire Communication Office
   "RDM258" for giving us the preview of the 1972 Documentary "The Bronx is Burning"
   "VBCapt" for giving us those Great Photos of Brooklyns Great Fire at Knickerbocker and Bleeker.
   "*******" - for the stories he gave us as the Captain of Engine 82 from 1973 - 1976. He was one of the key players that was fighting those fires.
  For those that sent the "PMs" or "Posted" kind words about the Thread, I greatly appreciate it. But besides the above, there were many more that helped make this a success.
  I can"t forget both "guitarman314" and "johnd248" for their contributions. And for all the others that took the time to tell their stories or comments, you all played apart in this. "Thank You".
  There"s one more very important person. Mr "tbendick", without him, we wouldn"t even have this site.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on August 08, 2009, 08:10:07 PM
I would like to Thank Everyone who contributed to "My Younger Buff Stories". It has now passed the 10,000 mark for views. It would be Number 1 on this site, except for that "Dang" - "FDNY New Rigs" Thread.
   I would Espically like to Thank, "r1smokeater" for his recent photos of the old Foam Units, and the two videos he submitted, one of Capt Ron Carritue - "The Bushwick Fire Storm Years", and the other, "Bronx, NYC".
   Also: "FD347" for his Great Photos of "The Boro of Fire", Brooklyn Fire Communication Office
   "RDM258" for giving us the preview of the 1972 Documentary "The Bronx is Burning"
   "VBCapt" for giving us those Great Photos of Brooklyns Great Fire at Knickerbocker and Bleeker.
   "*******" - for the stories he gave us as the Captain of Engine 82 from 1973 - 1976. He was one of the key players that was fighting those fires.
  For those that sent the "PMs" or "Posted" kind words about the Thread, I greatly appreciate it. But besides the above, there were many more that helped make this a success.
  I can"t forget both "guitarman314" and "johnd248" for their contributions. And for all the others that took the time to tell their stories or comments, you all played apart in this. "Thank You".
  There"s one more very important person. Mr "tbendick", without him, we wouldn"t even have this site.



Amen. Well said.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 08, 2009, 10:46:27 PM
   Let's keep it going, everytime my Altheimer's let's up, I remember something I want to share and this is just the right place for it.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 08, 2009, 11:17:41 PM
I agree G-Man. There"s more stories to be told. We still have the 80s to cover, and yes, as time goes on, that old brain starts to rattle a little, and more stories come out. Yes G-man, you, me, Johnd248, my brother georged4997, plus a few others have more stories to tell. Its just a matter of getting our Senior thoughts together. Actually, sometimes it"s Fun getting older. Like these days, "sometimes seeing Double Vision, is alot better than Television". "The only problem is deciding which truck on the highway is the real one". So us Seniors need to keep this ongoing with our 40-50 years of buffing experience.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 09, 2009, 01:50:31 PM
From WNYF, 2nd Issue, 1975. (Poem)
   Five years ago and how we knew, Oh, Number One belonged to you. We relocated and saw your clothes, Filled with dirt as was your nose. We took your runs while you cleaned up and ate. After all, you were first from the starting gate. You even have an author who wrote a book. About Number One, and what it took. But like anything else, times will change. And even the numbers will re-arrange. Someone else will soon take over top spot. Our area changed, and things got hot. Look at the statics for Seventy Four. Thirty One Truck is not there anymore. It"s Thirty Three now, and when you"re near our borders, just hoist a "salute" as you pass our quarters.
                                                              By, Vinnie Ryan, and associates of Ladder Co 33
   P.S. - Special Thanks goes to my Good Buddy Stuie, Captain in the Norwich, Ct Fire Dept, for passing this on to me.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 10, 2009, 01:46:05 AM
I would like to thank all the contributors to this thread.  There are many great stories and memories which are part of the great history of FDNY.  I was fortunate to be able to spend a lot of time riding with my dad from the late 60's thru his retirement in the mid-80's.  I will always admire the terrific firefighters I saw - in all 5 boros.  Since my son is on the job now, I share with him the many changes that have occurred in a job which, ironically, really has not changed.

My memories start (1950's when my dad came on the job) with visits to firehouses where the rigs were all red, open cabs, bells on the front bumpers, all black rubber or canvas turnout coats, boots rolled down and placed next to each rig, housewatch desks with all response boxes on the wall color-coded (E/T/C) for 1st/2nd/3rd due.  There was always a great smell coming from the kitchen in days where there were no fast food, prepared Ragu sauce and microwave ovens.  There were no company tees.  Guys wore heavy dark cotton uniform pants and plain blue shirts.  No patches.  In the summer, chiefs OKed responses in white tee shirts and it was not infrequent to see turnout coats fall off the rig on runs.  Everyone worked two days shifts and then 2 night shifts with 48 or 72 hours between days and nights.  Many engines had a second piece.  Subway-type handle grips were used by the guys on the back step.  Some ladders still used wooden aerials.  Chiefs had plain red cars with a bubble light and a bell.  No one wore masks.  There were still beautiful old Ahrens Fox pumpers along with Ward LaFrance, ALF and the standard bearer - Mack pumpers.   Hose wagons still existed. Deck pipes were mounted behind cabs.  Spare rigs from World War II vintage could be heard with whistles that had replace sirens during the war. Scaling ladders were carried, though never used.  Engines had all nozzles and fittings visibly mounted around the rig.  No one had individual radios.  Bells turned out everyone.  When they tapped in, everyone stopped what they were doing and counted - until the numbers were recognized as those belonging to some other unit.  There were no computers.  Guys played cards and watched TV together to pass the time.  Alarm boxes had to be rewound by FDNY keys. There were no medical runs, except when someone pulled a box when stabbed or shot.  Doors were left open during runs. Many houses were built by the old volunteer companies or the Brooklyn Fire Department and many were single company houses.  Ladders were wooden and heavy.  Life nets were practiced with.  There was no CIDS information available.  There were many more manufacturing facilities, non-sprinklered buildings, fewer automatic alarm systems and smoke detectors.  There were no cell phones so units rarely knew what they had until they turned down the address block.  No one could recognize that the "War Years" would follow.  The job was tough and dangerous then, as it still is.

The 60's, 70's and 80's have been described by many in this forum with great memories and anecdotes.  The Superpumper, Adaptive Response, 2nd sections, DRBs, TCUs, the strike, tower ladders, combination fire companies, 2 field comms....etc. Units were doing 4000 runs and never made the top of FDNY runs and worker lists.  The personal accounts, books, films and memories of this era are fascinating and unbelieveable.

Today's firefighters still work the best job in the world as well as one of the most demanding, dangerous and selfless occupations. 

Sorry for my rambling memories but this thread shares brings back more than historical tales.  It also highlights individual heroes, many of whom were family and friends.  Thanks again.     
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 10, 2009, 08:19:22 AM
"Mack", did you tell a "GREAT STORY" or What ! ! ! It is what the Fire Dept was all about for about 40 - 50 years all wrapped up into your Great Words. I can relate to each word and sentence. During those days, my father was also on the job, but in Bridgeport, Ct. Every word you spoke brings back memories to me, and a Great time to be a young kid with dreams of becoming a fireman.
  You must be very proud of your son being on the job. Yes there"s been many, many changes since those older days. I don"t think we"ll ever see another "War Years". A lot of people got hurt or died because of it. But there will still be fires to fight. We had never lost 343 firefighters at one major incident. We had never been attacked by people who wanted to destroy us. Today we face that problem. Your son, and all the Firefighters out there today have my "Highest Respect" for what they do.
   Yes the job has really changed since the 50s, 60s, and 70s, even the 80s. I"m sure glad I was around to be a part of it. But with all that change, we still have today"s Firefighters risking their lives to save lives.
   As "G-man" said earlier, I certainly hope we will continue with this. I"m sure there"s alot more stories to tell. But Mack, you did a pretty good job of wrapping it all up into one package. Thank You Mr Mack ! ! !
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on August 10, 2009, 10:04:03 AM
Joined the FDNY 3/60, retired 1/97. The five most important improvements I experienced during my years were Ladders 3, power saws, HT unit assignment, 1 3/4" hose and tower ladders. The war years began around 1965, tower ladders came into the job 66 or 67 I believe. Without the towers, during the war it would have been a very different story, the good Lord knew what was needed.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 10, 2009, 03:24:13 PM
I remember talking to a member of FDNY shortly after those busy years. He said "if it wasn"t for those Tower Ladders, we probadly would have lost the entire Bronx". I also remember when the ! 3/4" hose came in. Prior to that it was all 2 1/2" and 1 1/2" hose. I have to guess that FDNY was probadly the first dept to use the 1 3/4" hose. That was also when The Rapid Water system came into play. But that had its problems. I think its fair to say that most depts use 1 3/4 " hose as interior attack lines these days. And the power saws and Handie Talkies improved the job so much too. Funny, but as a Buff (not as a fireman), it seems that my buddies and I discussed the same improvements as being Great. On the other side of the coin, we really weren"t too keen on those Lime Green Engines, except it was still the FDNY. And we really weren"t too happy about the new bunker geer, and later on MDTs. Although, all have been some very good improvements. Oh yea, we liked the old system of bells in the firehouse, then later the Voice Alarm. But as far as doing the actual job, the former Capt of Engine 82 is absolutely correct. Thank You.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 10, 2009, 07:13:35 PM
More pictures have been added to "Harlem and The Bronx pictures from the early 80s. These photos were all taken by Michael Dick. It appears the last two were from the Huge Con Ed Explosion from around 138th St, which was discussed earlier in this thread. I believe you"ll see the huge fireball behind two city buses. The other photos are all Great too. Thanks Mike for letting this be passed on. Now, I hope I get this right. Try this :   http://fdnysbravest.com     
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on August 10, 2009, 08:13:55 PM
More pictures have been added to "Harlem and The Bronx pictures from the early 80s. These photos were all taken by Michael Dick. It appears the last two were from the Huge Con Ed Explosion from around 138th St, which was discussed earlier in this thread. I believe you"ll see the huge fireball behind two city buses. The other photos are all Great too. Thanks Mike for letting this be passed on. Now, I hope I get this right. Try this :   http://fdnysbravest.com     

These these are the photos that started the HI EX Foam discussion.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 10, 2009, 08:57:03 PM
Yes KFD274, you are correct. These photos did start the discussion of the Hi-Ex Foam Unit. But, what I was referring to was the pictures that had the Huge Con Ed Explosion with that massive fireball. It occurred on Locust and 134 St in the Bronx. It was mentioned on page 10 of this thread. G-man gave us the info and then we talked about it somewhat. I just wanted to point out that the last two of these most recent photos were taken at that incident. It it is really quite impressive.
   The way things are going with these stories, maybe the MAND Library at "The Rock" should pick up on it. Alot of FDNY history right here.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on August 10, 2009, 10:26:11 PM
Yes KFD274, you are correct. These photos did start the discussion of the Hi-Ex Foam Unit. But, what I was referring to was the pictures that had the Huge Con Ed Explosion with that massive fireball. It occurred on Locust and 134 St in the Bronx. It was mentioned on page 10 of this thread. G-man gave us the info and then we talked about it somewhat. I just wanted to point out that the last two of these most recent photos were taken at that incident. It it is really quite impressive.
   The way things are going with these stories, maybe the MAND Library at "The Rock" should pick up on it. Alot of FDNY history right here.

Thanks nfd
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: KickAssBlaster on August 11, 2009, 10:53:28 PM
  Then in 1975 or 1976, the "Entire Country" got to see for themselves what firefighters and buffs already knew. As people watched their TVs the World Series was being played from Yankee Staduim. While the fans were cheering on Regie Jackson, the FDNY was doing what they had been doing every night. That was putting out fires in the South Bronx and other neighborhoods throughout the City. Only this time it was in the area of Yankee Stadium, and the TV cameras focused in on it between plays. Sports Announcer, the Late Howard Cosell, not only talked about the Series Game, but also how the Bronx was burning. I believe the fire went to a Fourth Alarm, and the next day everybody from NY to LA was talking about the Game, "AND" "The Fire". America had now witnessed for themselves, what really was going on in "The Arson Capital of the World". And by the way, "I do believe the Yankees won".

I believe that was in '77 or '78; Reggie Jackson was in Oakland in '75, Baltimore in '76 and was traded to Yankees in '77. Great stories!

Did 82 Engine have a bigger house in the 60's/70's? In Smith's book, he said there were 2 engines (82 & 85) and a Ladder (31) plus a TCU (whatever that is)?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 11, 2009, 11:49:45 PM
They firehouse was the same size but they managed to squeeze 2 pumpers (E82 & E85) a chief's car, a rearmount TCU ladder and L31's ALF tiller. BTW, I posted information on that big World Series fire at Melrose & 158 at the begining of this thread. ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 11, 2009, 11:52:09 PM
  That was on Wednesday, Oct. 12th, 1977, a 5th Alarmer seen worldwide on ABC Sports. The fire building was the old PS 3 school building which was a  large 400 x 200 4 story vacant school built in 1890. E71 responded to an ERS box at 1917hrs then 3 minutes later Box 2310-Melrose & 158 was sent, followed by a 7-5 and it progressed all all the way up to a 5th alarm at 2151hrs, 2 hours later. The Super Pumper and 2 additional tower ladders were also called in. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: raybrag on August 12, 2009, 07:18:37 AM
And, Kick, a TCU was a Tactical Control Unit; a ladder company that was manned only part time, during the peak fire activity hours.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 12, 2009, 08:16:32 AM
They firehouse was the same size but they managed to squeeze 2 pumpers (E82 & E85) a chief's car, a rearmount TCU ladder and L31's ALF tiller. BTW, I posted information on that big World Series fire at Melrose & 158 at the beginning of this thread. ;)


  For Mr Kick A**Blaster, Just to add to G-man, I believe that the TCU Ladder was kept at Eng 43s Quarters during off hours, and then when manned from 3 PM - 12 Mid, they spent their time at Eng 82s House. There was No Ladder 59 at that time. I believe that was mentioned earlier in this thread ???. And don"t forget, in those days with 9,000 - 10,000 runs for these units, it was very seldom that all units were in quarters. As I remember from hanging out at Angie"s Market across the street from 82s, the TCU very seldom backed into quarters. Or one of the other rigs would be outside. It wasn"t 30 minutes before the house bells went off, and one of those rigs went on a run. "Don"t forget, We are talking the War Years". It was a different time. A Historic Time.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: JWalton on August 12, 2009, 09:19:31 AM
Also for Mr. KickA**Blaster...If you go to the General Discussion section of this forum and sort the topics by member, you'll find Grumpy Grizzly started a topic called "Engine 82 During the War Years".  It had a detailed response in there about how the rigs were arranged.  It's also a pretty cool thread overall.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 12, 2009, 10:09:52 AM
  Another, crowded firehouse during the "War Years" that didn't get noticed as much was my neighborhood firehouse: E60/L17/Bc14 house. At one time they had E60(1969-70 Mack), Bc14-1, Bc14-2(later Bc26), L17-2(1970 (Sgr rm) all in the west bay and  L17-1 (1968 ALF tiller) in the east bay. And let's not forget the "Fire Factory" that had E58, Bc25, L26-1(1968 ALF tiller) and L26-2(1953 ALF tiller) all operating 24/7.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on August 12, 2009, 10:49:27 AM
And, Kick, a TCU was a Tactical Control Unit; a ladder company that was manned only part time, during the peak fire activity hours.

There were also TCU (Tactical Control Unit) Engine Co's which were designated by a '500' series number. The 'TCU's' were on duty when 'Adaptive Response' was in effect; which I think was 1500 - 2400 hours. Each day at 1500 hours the telegraph signal 4-4-4-2-1 was sent out to place 'Adaptive Response' into effect.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1261Truckie on August 12, 2009, 11:44:53 AM
Don't forget:
Brooklyn's Watkins Street House...E-231, E-232, L-120, BC-44-1 & BC-44-2
Sheffield Avenue...E-290, L-103-1 & L-103-2
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: KickAssBlaster on August 12, 2009, 11:46:48 AM
Thanks for responses; very interesting info.

Was E82/L31 "La Casa Grande"? And which one was "La Casa Caca"?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 12, 2009, 12:09:44 PM
When I first started buffing and right around the time that I got my First ride with Rescue 2 back around 1968, a normal full assignment would be Three Engines, Two Ladders, A Chief, and maybe a Squad Co (manpower unit) or a Rescue. And that was even on a pull box. I could remember counting the rigs. I remember seeing E219/L105, E207/L110 and of course E210 and the Rescue, and 31 Batt. on some of those pull boxes. As things got much busier over the next few years, the response was changed to Two engines, Two Ladders and the Chief. If the Communications Office had numerous calls, then a Third Engine would respond. The work continued to pick up. And that brought in the Adaptive Response System of two Engines and one Ladder responding with a Chief. If it was work, they got 3/2 plus a Rescue, and a Squad. (you can read about the Squads of those days on another Thread of this Site in History). But quite often due to heavy fire activity, it wasn"t always possible to get that response. Sometimes you"d see One Engine and a Tower Ladder knocking down a Fully involved Vacant 5 or 6 Brick by themselves. "It was Unbelievable, but it wasn"t Unusual". There just weren"t enough companies to handle the heavy workload. And that was with all the Second Section Companies, Squads, and 2 TCU Engines, and 2 TCU Ladders.
   Then it was decided in order to get more units, only one Engine would respond to a Pull Box. Also, ERS Boxes were replacing Pull Boxes. It was hoped that because the caller was now supposed to talk to the dispatcher, that would cut down on the 10-92s. As we know now, it didn"t. And in between all this were those fire dispatchers who had to answer and send out all these calls with no computers. And this went on every day. The only comparison to it were those Busy Fourth of July"s in the 80s and 90s.
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 12, 2009, 12:30:38 PM
Yes 82/31 was "La Casa Grande". ( That"s Polish meaning The Big House). I could be wrong, but I think "La Casa Caca" was maybe Eng 53 and Lad. 43 in Spanish Harlem  ???
  And "1261 Truckie", who could ever forget those Busy Brooklyn outfits, out there in far away Brownsville. I can assure you, and everybody else, that the 44 section 1, 44 section 2, 231, 232, 120 and 290, 103-1 and 103-2 caught their share of fires. Thats why there were two Battalions in the same firehouse, and two ladder trucks in the same one. That way when one was out, the other could respond to another call.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on August 12, 2009, 12:44:07 PM
you all forgot about E50,E50-2,L19 and the 6 Div. and later E46,E46-2,L27,L27-2 and Bat56.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: scamall dubh on August 12, 2009, 12:52:20 PM
Yes 82/31 was "La Casa Grande". ( That"s Polish meaning The Big House). I could be wrong, but I think "La Casa Caca" was maybe Eng 53 and Lad. 43 in Spanish Harlem  ???
  And "1261 Truckie", who could ever forget those Busy Brooklyn outfits, out there in far away Brownsville. I can assure you, and everybody else, that the 44 section 1, 44 section 2, 231, 232, 120 and 290, 103-1 and 103-2 caught their share of fires. Thats why there were two Battalions in the same firehouse, and two ladder trucks in the same one. That way when one was out, the other could respond to another call.

La Casa Caca is Eng 73
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 12, 2009, 01:13:35 PM
Thanks "Matty" but there might be even a few more. Unless they were temporary Second Sections using relocated companies, I can remember quite a few more. Eng 91, 88, 233, Lad 26. I"m just not sure if they were permanet second sections. I think in "War Years Trivia" in History, they talk about it.
   And Thanks "ChiefBlackCloud", yes, now I remember it as being Engine 73.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 12, 2009, 01:14:49 PM
you all forgot about E50,E50-2,L19 and the 6 Div. and later E46,E46-2,L27,L27-2 and Bat56.
Wasn't L27-2 at the old firehouse on 176th st. while L27-1 was at the new 460 Cross Bx. Expwy. house?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 12, 2009, 01:17:42 PM
Thanks "Matty" but there might be even a few more. Unless they were temporary Second Sections using relocated companies, I can remember quite a few more. Eng 91, 88, 233, Lad 26. I"m just not sure if they were permanet second sections. I think in "War Years Trivia" in History, they talk about it.
   And Thanks "ChiefBlackCloud", yes, now I remember it as being Engine 73.
E91 was in a large 3 bay/3 story house while E58/L26 were in a much smaller building. Also "La Casa Caca" means "Feces House" which is not a nice slogan.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: raybrag on August 12, 2009, 02:10:07 PM
Oh, Thomas, me bucko, it couldn't possibly mean "s**t house", now, could it? ??? ???  Or could you just be trying to shield folks' sensitive eyes ::) ??? ::)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 12, 2009, 02:23:14 PM
Oh, Thomas, me bucko, it couldn't possibly mean "s**t house", now, could it? ??? ???  Or could you just be trying to shield folks' sensitive eyes ::) ??? ::)
ISN'T THIS A 'FAMILY' WEBSITE, OR ISN'T IT? ;D ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: QUEENS1985 on August 12, 2009, 03:01:42 PM
"La Casa Caca" is Engine 73 / Ladder 42
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: scamall dubh on August 12, 2009, 03:22:40 PM
"La Casa Caca" is Engine 73 / Ladder 42

Just E 73
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mac8146 on August 12, 2009, 03:25:57 PM
L-42 was known as LaCasaDe Elephante all big tall fireman in the old days
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 12, 2009, 06:08:22 PM
"La Casa Caca" is Engine 73 / Ladder 42

Just E 73
Yes these are two separate buildings for E73 & L42, 655 and 661 Prospect Ave., one built in 1900 and the other in 1913. ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 12, 2009, 09:32:49 PM
I want to add some small pieces of information about chiefs in the War Years . The department instituted DRBs - "Discretionary Response Boxs" in the early 70's (as I recall) to offer some relief to the overstretched battalions.  This enabled the responding battalion on these designated boxes to respond with the first due engines/truck or remain in service wherever they were at when the box came in.  This let them miss the predictable 10-92's and wait until a preliminary report came in if a job. 

There were several battalions that operated with two sections during this period.  There was 12-2, 14-2, 37-2, 44-2 and maybe a few others.  There was a battalion, I think Bn 60, in the early 70's that rotated into busy battalions to reduce the workload.  And still there were many times that dispatchers asked for "any available battalion chief" to take in a working fire.  I remember a long run or two from Coney Island into Flatbush as the closest available chief to cover a working taxpayer fire.

I also witnessed a few nights when units working at a job in abandoned buildings (there were a few back then), discovered another building torched across the street or down the block, and operated at both fires during the same run.  One example was on Mermaid Ave in Coney Island - a fire in the upper vacant floors, knocked down; the officer from L166 reporting he could see a job across the empty lot a block away; E245/E318/L166/L161 and maybe E253 actually running across the lot while the chauffers drove the rigs around the block; a line and the tower ladder opening up into the vacant building; the aide discovering a third job down the block - and all 3 fires handled by the same awesome companies with one chief (no all hands chief/no safety chief/no rescue bn chief/no deputy).  By they way, there were a few more workers that night and this was not the So Bronx, Brownsville, Harlem or Alphabet City, which had nights like this routinely.

Battalion chiefs sometimes ignored transmitting the all hands so they could take the job by themselves and because they knew they were not going to get any additional units.  Many jobs back then received a "10-30" on arrival and were fought with 2 & 2, as long as a tower ladder responded. 

The BCs picked up resusitator special calls because most line units did not have any medical equipment.  I remember runs where the chief and driver were the only FDNY units responding on cardiac and difficulty breathing emergencies.  If you rode with a battalion, you went from run to run and frequently did not see quarters from 1500 to midnight.

The battalions transported injured members to the hospital because no one could predict arrival time of an ambulance.  FDNY ownership of NYC EMS was still many years away.

Finally frustration - I remember more than once seeing a chief stand in front of a fully involved building waiting for distant engines and trucks to respond in.  Aides were frequently the first one in a building because no one else was there. 
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 12, 2009, 11:00:24 PM
Mack, yes I remember the DRBs. I never saw more than two building fires on the same street though, BUT, I do remember seeing two jobs on the same street and going to an adjoining roof top to check out the trench cuts etc, seeing the building on fire down the street, and then seeing another column of smoke off in the not too far distance. The guy that told me "if it wasn"t for the Tower ladders we might have lost the entire Bronx" was absolutely right. And you"re correct. Most of my stories is from the busiest area"s because that"s where most of us Buffs hung out. But other parts were burning too. I"d hear jobs all over and wouldn"t even give them a second thought. We used to keep a pad and pencil and write down the boxes as they were put out. It was impossible to keep track of everything. I had a box location book, and when a 10-30 or a 10-75 was given, we"d have to look up the location to find out where it was. One of the buffs with me would be doing this and we"d call him our "Field Comm coordinator". (my brother georged4997 must remember that because we usually assigned him the job). As I read these stories and I write what I remember, I wonder "how did these guys ever do it" ? Sometimes I think, well maybe this really wasn"t that bad, and maybe I"m just blowing this out of proportion. But it did happen, and there are others to back up these and similar stories. For me, I enjoy telling these stories. its been my hobby buffing the FDNY for years. And I enjoy reading "Your" Stories. But I hope with all this, those who weren"t around to see this will get a feeling of what these Firefighters did every day and night for 10 - 15 years straight.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on August 13, 2009, 08:00:45 AM
On those 2nd sections in the Bronx E50-2 moved on to become E46-2. When the worked moved E46-2 became E88-2. L27-2 was on 176 st for a short time until they became L58 and moved into a new house next to E45.regarding B56, if not mistaken they were B18-2.hope I have this right it's been a long time.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on August 13, 2009, 08:59:42 AM
Almost Matty. 46-2 was formed in 1968, moved over and became 88-2 in 1969 to allow room for 27-2 to be organized on 176th St with E46. E50-2 wasn't organized until 1970. When 46 and 27 moved to their present quarters in 1972, 27-2 was disbanded and reorganized as L58, awaiting the move to their new quarters next to E45. Squad 1 moved up from Manhattan to 176th Street with L58, and the 56th Battalion was organized and went in there with them.

People forget that by the early 70's the arson hotbed had moved north to the Tremont/Monterrey section. Most of the borough south had been burned out.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 13, 2009, 09:19:06 AM
Thanks "Matty" for your help. It all makes sense now. That"s why I remember hearing 88 with two sections, and 46, and 50 with two sections. But it wasn"t throughout the entire War Years when all these second sections operated. And I remember when the fire activity was heading North almost up to Fordham Rd. I said to a buddy of mine, "Look its spreading even up to here". I think we were at a job somewhere around 180 or 182 St maybe Prospect Ave area. That was a pretty far distance from the farther South area where we were chasing jobs. Like G-mans old neighborhood around 60/17, 83/29. As the years went on, you could drive and start to see burned out buildings in every block. Some blocks were completely burned out. As a buff, you"d ride by hundreds of burned out buildings, and never give much thought to it, unless it was a newer job that they caught while you were safe in your suburban home. If anybody had gotten lost, or took a wrong turn while driving to Grandma"s house, I have a feeling they got the "shock of their lives".
   Got a little carried away from what "Matty" was referring to, but that brain started to rattle a little. Thanks Matty for your thoughts and clearing us up on some of the Second Sections. And looks like whoever said Ladder 27-2 was right about them being in the old firehouse on 176 St.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 13, 2009, 10:16:47 AM
  By working 34 yrs. in the Bronx for the U.S. Pistol Service, I was able to see how much of the Southwest Bronx was burned away by the loss of letter carrier routes in the 'War ones". Yes, as people moved away and people with smaller incomes and lesser educated moved into some neighborhoods we at the post office had to re-align letter carrier routes. For instance, the branch I ended my carrer at, Hub located at St. Anns & Westchester once had 30 routes in 1970 and when I retired in 2004 they were down to 12 routes, the same for Mott Haven at 139th & Brook. My first assignment was Blvd. Station on So. Blvd near 167th St. not far from E82/E85/L31 that covered all the way down to Hunts Pt. (94/48). the station had 36 carrier routes in 1970 but by 1981 the same station was cut down to 21 routes because of all the burnt out blocks of vacant lots. Another station, Morrisania at 167th & Washington nr. E50/L19 which had 42 routes in 1970 was reduced to less than 30. Tremont Sta. nr. E46/L27 that covers from E42 all the way across to E88/L38 had 43 routes and was reduced to 30. At most of these So. Bx. post offices there was a special window for broken mailboxes and burnt out buildings where people would line up to pick up there mail because someone broke into there mailbox or their building had a fire. I didn't spend my whole career in the So. Bx. as I also got to work in nice neighborhoods of that time like Baychester, Bedford Pk., Kingsbridge, Parkchester, Wakefield, Williamsbridge, Woodlawn and even had a stint as acting postmaster of City Island in 1973. In the 1980's I was promoted to a position at the main post office at 149th & Grand Conc. My office was in the NE corner of the penthouse area with a panoramic view of the Bronx. I was able to have my scanner at my desk and most of the time I could see the smoke from my windows of most major jobs. One building multiple H type complex at 500 So. Blvd & 147th was the site of a few multiples and I can't believe that those buildings are still standing and occupied today.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on August 13, 2009, 11:20:08 AM
Great info, G- man.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 13, 2009, 12:41:23 PM
I agree with "3511", Great story G-man. I worked as a letter Carrier myself from 1970 - 1975, and I never gave it a thought about people getting their mail after all these burnouts. You certainly made a very good point of how many mail routes were lost in those days, basically all because of the fires. With so many people gone in some of these neighborhoods, and not just the South Bronx. Its easy to understand why other business"s in the area failed, such as food stores, auto repair etc. With nobody left in the neighborhood, those buildings became vacant and then they burned too. I think to really get a grip on what it was like, you really had to be there to see this.
  These conditions did also spread to other cities too. But maybe their War Years peaked about 10 years later. I remember in Bridgeport, Ct where they had there own share of War Years. Engine 2 was pumping to two separate fires. One was an vacant theatre, and the other around the corner, a vacant school.
  Then don"t forget the huge rubbish fires where they used stangs or deck guns to extinguish these fires. Or then the cars that were set on fire, many of which were stolen and which were good places to drop them off. Unless there was some dead animal, maybe a cat or dog, or maybe the rats, the oder of smoke just never left the area.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on August 13, 2009, 12:45:23 PM
Thanks for the help 3511. Killed to many brain cells over the years.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on August 13, 2009, 01:37:04 PM
Help me on this one. When Sq1 came to the Bronx they rotated between E46 and E45 during the Adaptive responce hours. Then after Midnight they would respond to all 10-75's.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on August 13, 2009, 04:30:26 PM
Yeah, Matty, that's it. When 88-2 became E72 they still needed another engine in the area. SQ1 would rotate thru 45, 46 and 88.  They ate in a different kitchen every night. (I have heard tell they favored the Italian style on Belmont Ave.) Home to 176th Street at midnight. Only ran to workers after that. I don't know about the day tours though. Anybody know that one?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on August 13, 2009, 04:34:55 PM
nfd, Remember Bridgeport running with two pieces in those days? Loved to watch the "flying stretches" when they had a job. And 10 and 10 parked one behind the other like 68 and 49?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ladder197 on August 13, 2009, 04:39:09 PM
I watched "The Bronx is Burning" lastnight, what an incredible documentary!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on August 13, 2009, 05:15:48 PM
Talking about Chiefs, I remember responding second due with Engine 248 to a fire at "The Junction" in Brooklyn in the mid 60s.
It was a Saturday night, around 9:30, and we had just finished dinner.  There is a triangular shaped block bounded by Flatbush Avenue, Nostrand Avenue, and Avenue H; I believe the box used that night was 3066.  We arrived on the Nostrand Avenue side and Engine 255 had a line stretched and operating into a barber shop on the first floor of a two story taxpayer.  The second floor contained a pool parlor that covered six stores on the first floor.  We took the second line to the second floor and operated with Ladder 147, second due truck.  The truck was called out to work on the ground floor.  What we did not know was the fact the fire had extended horizontally to the stores on both sides of the barber shop.  We would knock down fire as it appeared.  At one point, our Lieutenant sensed something and said: Drop the line, everybody to the staircase."  As the last man got to the stairs, the floor collapsed into the first floor, due to the heavy fire condition down below and the weight of the pool tables.  We pulled and pulled on the line and ultimately found the line burned off, minus our nozzle.  After that, it became a "surround and drown."  Somehow the Deputy Chief of the 12th Division sensed that the Boro Chief was near by, eagerly awaiting transmission of the third alarm so he could respond in.  The deputy just kept special calling engines and trucks one at a time, to keep the Boro Chief away.  We were relieved by the day crew at 9AM the following morning and we were still throwing water into that building. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 15, 2009, 11:54:13 PM
Johnd248 - That was quite an experience you had.  It did seem that many chiefs were more cautious about transmitting multiple alarms.  No one wanted to be second-guessed about transmitting a second and the fire going under control without putting the units to work.  Resources were scarce.  Many chiefs would request extra engine/extra truck/extra engine etc.  There seemed to be less 'second alarm on arrivals' transmitted except for the fully involved vacant building jobs.  Most units used the "10-30" when they arrived at a working fire.  I think that was a period of time (the 70's) that people were moving through the ranks very rapidly because new units (e.g. - TCUs), new battalions (27,55,56,60) and a new division (17). Chiefs often did not have many years of experience before they painted their helmets white.  They did not have the leadership classes which are available today to prepare for responsibilities.  They learned by fighting fires. There was no safety chief.  No rescue BC.  No assigned staging area or aeriel recon chief.  I do remember that there was a BC assigned as a "communications coordinator" on the 3rd alarm (I think) and they worked with one of the two field comm units which operated in the 70's.  Field Comm 1 was in midtown (E23?) and usually covered Manhattan and the Bronx.  Field Comm 2 was at E 259 and responded to Queens, Brooklyn and maybe SI.  The field comms responded on "all hands-doubtful" fires.   
     One other thing that I remember about jobs back then was the lack of specific information that chiefs and first arriving units often had when they arrived at fire scenes compared to today.  Who was coming in and who was in charge. Units were interchanged, relocated more often, adaptive response changed availability and respondig units, TCUs operated during specific hours, and many units normally assigned on a box were busy operating somwewhere else due to high fire volume. There were many covering chiefs and acting chiefs on any given tour because of turnover.  Frequently, battalion chiefs arrived at the scene first and did not know who would be the 1st or 2nd due units coming in.  Chiefs and aides would be calling for the "1st due engine" instead of "engine 248" on their "handie talkies".  Spare rigs were not marked well.  No tickets/no print-outs for the box.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 16, 2009, 10:28:20 AM
  Mack, once again you have added a wealth of information to "My Younger Buff Years". Yes, the two Field Comm Units, reluctant to go to multiple alarms, and no idea on what units were coming in is the way it was.
   A couple of things that were mentioned on other threads. I think "Bklyndisp54" mentioned about "Buff Mobiles". Yes, I certainly remember the term. I had a buff mobile, but it wasn"t like a NYC Police Car. It was usually a car that was good on gas. Nothing new or fancy. It just wasn"t the place to drive around with a new nice shiny car. Or you could come back to your car after checking out a job, and find everything gone, (tires, seats, valuables etc), except the shell. And I hate to say it, but sometimes the Buffs would even have a siren and flashing light to take in the job. Of course that was Completely Illegal and some of the guys gave the Buffs a Bad Name.
  Somebody else mentioned on another thread about walking into a firehouse and wanting to buy a T-Shirt. He ended up taking in a call with them. I can remember often stopping by a firehouse, especially if the apparatus doors were open and a few guys were out there. Next thing I knew, I was riding the rig on a few calls. In fact, I"d have buddies in my "buff mobile" and they would ask if we could stop and maybe they will let us ride. I sometimes tried to discourage that because if we were at one firehouse, we could miss a job somewhere else. Pretty much if you were decent, the guys were glad to meet you. I stopped one time at a busy Bronx firehouse and a so-called buff buddy of mine decided to say how busy "he" was in "his" dept. The guys pointed to the Burned out block across the street from the firehouse and asked him if he has that across the street from "his" firehouse. Then the apparatus doors closed.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on August 16, 2009, 10:32:59 AM
A lot of what Mack states is right on the money. One exception I would have though was the rapid rise to chief during that time. When the city went into its fiscal crisis, 74 I believe, this put a hold on many promotions. I was #22 on a 200 name Battalion Chief list.  I was not promoted for many months, where if in different times I would have been. I still remember the day when the UFOA President, Billy Hunter, called me at 82 engine and told me that I was going to be demoted back to Lt. the following week, with 20 or so other Captains in a "cost saving fix." Never happened. I was promoted 5/76. One major factor during those days with fire extinguishment was the experience factor. I believe that the "art" of firefighting is 90% experience, 10% books and drills. Yeah companies were out of sequence etc. but almost without exception any engine or truck you had there or coming there was highly experienced. My wife was always after me to transfer out of the Bx when I was a Lt. there and then Captain. I always said to her that I was probably safer there with the experience level than anywhere else in the city. Busy days and busy nights, but amazingly every morning as I was driving home all the fires were out, unless one had just started. The war years were the best of times, the worst of times, to steal a line.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on August 16, 2009, 12:19:24 PM
Yet another blast from the past:  Often, when a regular chief's aide in the 41 Battalion was out/off, the chief would yank a firefighter from Engine 248 as his temporary aide.  One day we had a snotting fire in the rear of a shoe store on Flatbush Avenue near Snyder Avenue.  The temporary aide from the engine entered the store, after giving the preliminary for an all hands, and found the chief.  The chief said: "Bring a second line" and the aide heard: "Bring in a second alarm."  The aide went out to the car radio and requested a second alarm.  He then re-entered the store and advised the chief the second alarm was on the way.  Needless to say that firefighter was not used as a temporary aide after that, but he was promoted to Lieutentant several years later.

Another night, I was riding with Batt. 41 and we responded to a four alarm fire at Kings Highway and Coney Island Avenue, possibly as the third alarm chief.  The fire was in a row of taxpayers and had started in Field Brothers clothing store.  I was somewhat surprised when my chief said he wanted to check out the roof, went to a portable ladder, and asked me to butt it so he could ascend to the roof.  No sooner did he step onto the roof, someone else tapped me on the shoulder and said: Hold the ladder for me too, son."  I turned to look and see who it was:  Chief of the Department John T. O'Hagan.  I made sure I held onto that ladder.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on August 16, 2009, 07:25:49 PM
Yet another blast from the past:  Often, when a regular chief's aide in the 41 Battalion was out/off, the chief would yank a firefighter from Engine 248 as his temporary aide.  One day we had a snotting fire in the rear of a shoe store on Flatbush Avenue near Snyder Avenue.  The temporary aide from the engine entered the store, after giving the preliminary for an all hands, and found the chief.  The chief said: "Bring a second line" and the aide heard: "Bring in a second alarm."  The aide went out to the car radio and requested a second alarm.  He then re-entered the store and advised the chief the second alarm was on the way.  Needless to say that firefighter was not used as a temporary aide after that, but he was promoted to Lieutentant several years later.

Another night, I was riding with Batt. 41 and we responded to a four alarm fire at Kings Highway and Coney Island Avenue, possibly as the third alarm chief.  The fire was in a row of taxpayers and had started in Field Brothers clothing store.  I was somewhat surprised when my chief said he wanted to check out the roof, went to a portable ladder, and asked me to butt it so he could ascend to the roof.  No sooner did he step onto the roof, someone else tapped me on the shoulder and said: Hold the ladder for me too, son."  I turned to look and see who it was:  Chief of the Department John T. O'Hagan.  I made sure I held onto that ladder.

I wonder if the Chief would go up the ladder today.  Or at least use a tower?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: efd274 on August 16, 2009, 08:14:24 PM
Depends on who the Chief is!!!  The Commissioner - now that's another story!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 17, 2009, 01:21:43 AM
Most memorable run - I had heard many tales from the time I was a little kid visiting my dad in his Brooklyn firehouse.  As I got older, I thought I was pretty tough from my military experience and from several years of responding with different units.  The call I will always remember the most was one I would never have expected.  We were responding to a fire somewhere in Gravesend.  I think we were on Shell Rd, late at night.  We were surprised that someone walking a dog waved us down in the middle of the street and asked for help.  Who is out at 2AM anyway? The chief promised he would request assistance for what seemed to be a minor car accident on the other side of the street, in the dark under the subway line.  When we returned from the fire about an hour or two later, the street was lit up like Yankee Stadium.  Cops all over the place, crime lab, vans, federal agents.  We pulled over and a detective from the 60th Pct. (next door to the firehouse) said "you guys gotta see this".  We walked around some barriers and police lines and saw the car, a big Caddy or Lincoln, and what was left of the driver splattered all over the front seat and windshield.  It was a "wise guy" hit and the cops were matter-of-factly telling us the guys name, nick name, alias names, priors, family, girl friends, etc.  It was a scene from the Godfather.  The thing I remember the most was that the detectives, who we knew, were handed their meal - meatball heroes (subs), and had red sauce dripping from their chins as they routinely pointed out details around the vehicle.  This was no big deal.  Just another night.  When we got back to W 8th St, everyone just went to bed.  One more run that night. No one even mentioned the shooting the next morning. But one of the guys did mention that he wondered where the cops got their subs because they smelled good.   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 17, 2009, 08:52:17 AM
Thanks "Mack". Just another day in the streets of Brooklyn. Now let me take you up to the Bronx. Nothing like your story but just how everything was then.
   I was parked at one of my favorite spots sometime in the 1980s. It was near Clairmont Park under a tree because it was hot that day. I was with another firefighter that was on the job with me. We were both also EMTs. My buddy looks across the street and some guy is having a seizure. We ran over to help him when a NYPD car came riding by and stopped. As we are struggling to try and help this guy, very casually the officer rolls down the car window, and says: "What's going on here"? We told him "we were FF/EMTs and the guys having a seizure, would you call an ambulance". He got on the radio and he told us "its an hour for the next Bus (ambulance), just THROW him in the back and we'LL take him up". So with that, he opened the back door, we put the guy in, and off they went. Neither officer ever even got out of the car. It was nothing like back in Connecticut, no vital signs, no O2, no paramedic. It was just the way it was then.
   Another incident similar occurred when an elderly lady apparently slipped on the ice. It was really cold. I think she might have broken her leg or hip. Only one person stopped to help her. Somebody had called for an ambulance and was I told, it will be at least an hour. All we could do is try to keep her warm while we waited.
    In those days, the Emergency services were just stretched beyond the breaking point. No F.D. response to EMS calls because there was just too many fires going on. And the Police and EMS were just overwhelmed. And as "Mack" points out, most people didn"t become concerned whether it was a murder or an old lady in the cold waiting for an ambulance. Or even a fully involved building on their street.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on August 17, 2009, 04:50:34 PM
No F.D. response to EMS calls because there was just too many fires going on. And the Police and EMS were just overwhelmed.

Although FDNY didn't respond to 911 calls that requested medical assistance back in the 60's through the early 90's, it was very common for civilians to pull the street box, bang on the firehouse door or to dial the FD Central Office on the 7 digit emergency line to request assistance for cardiacs, shootings/ stabbings, auto accidents, etc. It was commonplace to hear engine companies notifying the dispatcher that they were transporting a patient to the hospital due to no 'bus' being available. The patient would be placed into a 'stokes' which was put into the hose bed of the pumper. CPR and 1st aid would be administered by FF's while en-route to the hospital. During the mid to late 1970's about 2,000 FDNY Firemen became EMT's on their own time, at no cost to the city. Many lives were saved by FDNY in those years when EMS was brand new and barely functioning.

I remember responding to a verbal alarm across from quarters one night in 1982; we arrived and found a middle aged woman in cardiac arrest. We began CPR using the Battalion's resuscitator. EMS had no buses available in the borough so some of the members emptied out the back of the Chief's Suburban, placed the patient into a Stokes and two of us jumped in and did CPR during the transport to the closest ER.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: QUEENS1985 on August 17, 2009, 08:12:10 PM
NYC firefighters are not EMT's. They are CFR's. Although, some have EMT training, on the job they must perform at the CFR (Certified first responder) level.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on August 17, 2009, 09:51:15 PM
NYC firefighters are not EMT's. They are CFR's. Although, some have EMT training, on the job they must perform at the CFR (Certified first responder) level.

If you are referring to my post, I was speaking of the 70's and 80's. In the 70's, FDNY probably had more EMT's than the old HHC EMS did ... EMS back then was still running buses with an M.V.O. (Motor Vehicle Operator) driving and an 'Ambulance Technician' (Trained in advanced first aid) providing some rudimentary level of patient care. Until FDNY began the CFR program, FDNY Firefighters who were certified NYS EMT's did perform EMT level care.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 21, 2009, 11:19:00 PM
On page 11 of "My Younger Buff Years", we talked about one of the Worst areas for harassment to the firefighters of Engine 82 during those busy War Years. It was reported to be Box 2508 at Hoe and Aldus. Things would be thrown from the roof tops and the rig would have to back out. Thats really only a small street about six blocks long. Driving down the street you pass Hoe Ave, Longfellow, Bryant Ave, and Faile, and maybe one or two more. If you read the book, "Report from Engine Co 82", they were all mentioned in it.
  Well as promised I checked it out. It sure seems to be different from what it was in those 1970s. No burned out buildings, no rubbish lining the street, no graffiti, no abandoned cars, and I even "Walked" the entire street one side and back up the other side with nothing thrown at me from the roof tops. It was over 90 degrees with high humidity and not even an opened hydrant. A much more cleaner, civilized street than what it was during those very tough years.
  During that same day, I also got to meet "r1smokeater" for the first time. He has contributed a few videos, audios, and pictures to the "Younger Buff Years Stories" which I"m sure we are all grateful for. As it turns out, at one time, he lived on Faile St right around the corner from this Nasty Aldus St. I hope he didn"t take part in any of this stuff then. Only kidding "r1....". Actually he has almost 20 years on the job fighting fires in Yonkers, N.Y.   Good Guy and into the job too !!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Stevie on August 23, 2009, 06:54:55 AM
Started reading all the stories lastnight from the war years you guys have been telling.  Man what a time that must have been for you guys.  I have read Report from Engine 82 and a book i got last year in NY called When the Bronx burned about Engine 85 and Ladder 59. If you have not read this book its a must BOX 2-7-4-3 Charlotte and 170th yeah the box you guys have been going on about.  I would love to see the stats on how many fire calls were for that box alone.

I thankyou for the stories re the war years and Bill i read you will be moving onto the 80's I dont think you could ever beat the 70's

Stevie
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 23, 2009, 08:06:54 AM
  Stevie, you are "CORRECT". Nothing will come close to anything like the 1970s. In some of these stories, myself and a few others try to convey what it was like during that time frame with our own stories, some videos, and some pictures. I'd say that it has all worked out pretty well, for anybody who wants to read what it was like.
   You mentioned about a few books. Another book, that actually got me writing on this subject was called "The Usual". Also written by John Finucane, retired FDNY Eng 85 Lt.
   Also, for your enjoyment, and along the same time frame are several other stories written about this time frame. Check in "History" of this site. I think you"ll find stories on "War Years Trivia", "Squad Companies", "Those Busy Fourth of July's", and maybe a few others. For me, this Web Site has become a Library of FDNY information, whether History, or Current Events. We should all be very "Thankful" to "tbendick" who runs and pays for this site, through his ads.
   You mentioned how I stated I would be writing about the 1980s. They were busy times too. But now I am starting to realize, "How do I follow an act like The War Years of the 1970s".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on August 23, 2009, 08:09:15 AM
Charlotte Street was the "play ground" for Gasoline Gomez. He would hit every 8 to 10 days, always a night tour. We would get a small fire around 1900 hours at the start of the tour. This fire was always in a vacant or partially vacant building, 1st floor, rear vacant apartment.  Then around 2300 we would get a similar fire either same building or close by. Then around 0300 he would have 3 or 4 floors going in one of the previous buildings. One night after his second fire I can still remember the Battalion Chief Powell (RIP)pleading with an elderly Irish couple to leave the building as they would most likely have a fire that night and we may not be able to save them. They lived on the top floor of the entirely vacant building except for them. How they lived there I don't know, but they did. They would not leave because they had 7 or 8 dogs and no one would give them a place to live with the animals. I don't know how Powell did it but he got the Salvation Army to relocate the couple with their dogs. That night around 0300 we had 4 floors going in the building on arrival, we would not have been able to save the couple. We knew Gomez always used at least 5 gallons of gasoline with his 0300 fires. Gomez finally blew himself out a window at one of his fires. He barely survived, was arrested but beat it in court by saying he only went into the building to light a cigarette. Never heard from him again after this, this was around fall of 1975.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 23, 2009, 08:57:32 AM
As to the above by " ******* ". That's a story that can only be told by someone who was there.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 26, 2009, 09:18:08 PM
Earlier on this page, I mentioned about how I had promised to talk more about the 1980s, as the War Years started to slow down. The Bronx neighborhoods were still burning, only not as much. So were the busy areas of Brooklyn and Manhattan. I also noticed that Queens was starting to pick up too. Although at this point I hadn't been to Queens much. I had heard that Jamaica and St Albans area's were seeing the most work there. I had also heard that Queens had a lot of frames. Staten Island was just a little too far for me to go. I was familiar with the Bronx, and Harlem, so I pretty much stayed around there. (Although I did hit Brooklyn a few times).
   The fires continued. I still smelled of smoke when I got home. Those West Bronx Companies now were hopping. Plus the South Bronx was still getting its share of work. But the fires were more spread out now. It was pretty much everything South of Fordham Rd. And in Harlem pretty much everything from about 110th St to about 190th St. Fires were still being set using accelerates, either to collect on Insurance, or for revenge, whatever the reason was.
    I believe it was 1987 when a fire was set on Southern Blvd near East Tremont Ave. It was a small two story brick building called "The Happyland Social Club". Too many people inside of a small building, with only one very narrow stairway leading to the dance floor and no other way out.  There was an argument between a boyfriend and his Ex-girlfriend. He came back with some gasoline and set that only stairway on fire. With no other way out, I believe "87" Innocent people lost their lives that night. As I understand it, most of the victims died of smoke inhalation as the first due companies did a good job at knocking down the fire. Today, a Memorial sits across the street on Southern Blvd. A reminder to one of the Worst Fires in New York City History.
 

  
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 26, 2009, 09:53:25 PM
  Happyland, I just finished models of the 1st due engine and truck E45/TL58
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 27, 2009, 07:19:25 AM
Guitarman - Great job on the models.  The details are unbelieveable.  How did you do it? 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 27, 2009, 07:44:42 AM
MFA's - 5 or 6 false alarms in a row were not uncommon.  You could almost tell what time it was by some boxes (e.g. - the after school boxes).  Most went 10-20 then 10-92, rewind the box, and pick up another run.  No big deal. There were some good stories about units that tried to nab box pullers and I think many actually did.  I can recall all the boxes located along the Coney Island Boardwalk, for example.  There was usually nothing at these boxes, especially during the non-summer months.  The battalion would frequently turn out first, zip down Surf Ave past the box location, turn off all lights and squeeze up a ramp several blocks down, and then rumble along the Boardwalk.  It was interesting to see all the shadows scrambling.  Occasionally, a group of young kids would be surprised" and a few comical conversations took place with energetic aides.  Unfortuantely, 4 or 5 sets of sirens and air horns and half a dozen guys in black rubber coats and yellow stripes walking around the block were part of the entertainment growing up in NYC.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 27, 2009, 07:55:33 AM
By the way, there were some good stories from the old timers back then who talked about using the boxes to transmit multiple alarms.  When you think about it, the fire alarm box system was something else.  Everyone had a fire alarm box key on their key rings.  The telegraph alarm system was reliable and relatively precise, even if someone walked a few blocks to turn in the alarm. You did not get incorrect verbal addresses.  The system survived power outages.  It was also a way for units to communicate in the pre-radio days.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on August 27, 2009, 07:56:20 AM
When I was in 50 engine we had the one box where every night around 2AM we would get a 9-2. Response to the box was 50,73, 19 and 42 truck. Night after night same box, same 9-2 at same time. One night as we pulled up and it was another 9-2 one unit started to lean on their siren. We all picked up on it and blew the sirens of all 4 units for a minute or so. I know that we woke the neighborhood up. That was the last night that we were called there at that time.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 27, 2009, 08:57:49 AM
Guitarman - Great job on the models.  The details are unbelieveable.  How did you do it? 
Thanks, that's for another thread. If you want to see more, look here:  http://s95.photobucket.com/albums/l155/guitarman314/?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on August 27, 2009, 11:18:56 AM
Guitarman - Great job on the models.  The details are unbelieveable.  How did you do it?  
Thanks, that's for another thread. If you want to see more, look here:  http://s95.photobucket.com/albums/l155/guitarman314/?

Why don't you start another thread.  Many of us are interested in your work.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 27, 2009, 06:27:27 PM
Guitarman - Great work.  I agree - start a new thread.  How do you do it?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on August 27, 2009, 08:26:09 PM
Guitarman-Fantastic work on the models
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 28, 2009, 12:30:04 AM
Guitarman - Great work.  I agree - start a new thread.  How do you do it?
I did start a new thread in the 'For Sale or Trade' section, it was a hobby that just outgrew itself ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 29, 2009, 11:15:48 PM
As the 1980s came in, I had learned that The NY Fire Fighters Burn Center would sponsor classes for anyone who wanted to attend. They would hold these classes about three to four times a year, usually on Saturdays. I believe this was started by the Late Retired Lt Jim Curran formerly of Rescue 1. Several others also helped organize this to help support the Burn Unit, while bringing some of the most experienced members to talk on various subjects. All donating their time with no pay. The cost was $25.00 and included lunch and the money would go to help support the Burn Unit.  I always made sure I attended these. Usually there was three or four speakers during the day. Some of the most well known across the country. Like Chief Ray Downey and Lt Andy Fredricks who we lost on 9/11. Others like Dep Chief Vincent Dunn, Chief John Norman, Chief John Salka, Capt Rex Morris, and many others all donating their time to give these classes and Help the Burn Center.
   By far, no question at all. For me, these were the BEST Classes I ever attended in the Fire Service. I believe they still offer these. I"m sure if anybody was interested, you can check out their web site. I believe they also offer some Great FDNY Training DVDs too.
   In the 1980s, after these classes were over around 3 PM, I'd leave "The Rock" and head to my favorite Bronx neighborhoods. For me, it was the Best Classes and then the Best Buffing, money could buy. I sure enjoyed that.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: engine6 on August 30, 2009, 07:38:09 PM
nfd2004 I am awaiting more " younger buff years" stories from you and the rest of posters that were around during this fire period. Thanks for posting to everyone. Its hard to image the work load and the condition of an American city in these modern times. So please keep them coming, the stories take us all back to a time and place when I think we all wish we could do a tour or two and see first hand what you all witnessed first hand. Thanks again guys.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 30, 2009, 08:32:17 PM
"engine 6", I certainly don't want to disappoint you. As the stories come to me, I will certainly pass them on. As you see in the previous 18 pages or so, others have done the same. They've done a Great Job, and because of them, we've been able to add to these stories. Hope you checked them all out.
  I wrote on another thread here about one of the pictures that was put on showing a War Years Job. It showed the building on fire and the front porch (it was a frame) and front cement sidewalk burning too. As the rigs would pull up, they would have to first extinguish the fire burning on this cement sidewalk. No doubt about it, an accelerate was used. Make it a 10-41. And that wasn't too uncommon in those days. Or another thing I remember seeing was three separate fires going on at the same time. As the first due Engine and Truck pulled up to a job, not only was the building on fire, but a separate dumpster, and a car also. Maybe nobody else was coming because all the other companies were operating somewhere else. The MPO (Motor Pump Operator) would be using the booster line from the rig to extinguish the dumpster and car fire by himself, while the other guys were fighting the building fire.
  I remember walking some streets where the entire block was completely burned out. Nobody around other than maybe a few pigeons flying in and out of the buildings. As winter came in, you could hear the wind blowing through these totally destroyed burned out buildings.  Hard to believe maybe 2 or 3 years earlier, the entire block was occupied.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 01, 2009, 10:55:37 PM
Some GREAT New pictures posted by Mike Dick. GREAT Action photos from the WAR Years. Thanks Mike for sharing these with us.
     http://fdnysbravest.com
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on September 01, 2009, 11:09:47 PM
I remember back in my Engine 248/Battalion 41 days, the Battalion responded to a box on Utica Avenue, around Snyder or Beverly.  The chief located a relatively small fire on the second floor of a 3 story brick.  It was enough so that one line would be needed.  It was one of those times when every unit was out on other calls and the battalion arrived alone.  The chief heard an apparatus approaching, looked out the window to see the first due truck pulling down the street.  He thought, great, what I really need is an engine.  Before the truck could enter the building, he heard another apparatus approaching; again, he looked out the window, only to see the second due truck entering the block.  Eventually an engine showed up to extinguish the fire.  The chief told that story for years.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on September 02, 2009, 12:14:16 AM
You could always count on firefighters to demonstrate their ingenuity.  An afternoon box in the early 1970's was pulled for smoke somewhere along Coney Island Creek.  It turned out to be a large couch smoldering.  Extinguishers did not do the job and a stretched line would have been very difficult.  Then a member of L 161 found a pile of discarded paint buckets.  Simultaneously, everyone grabbed a pair of empty paint cans and headed towards the "blaze".  Literally, all hands went to work, 2 engines, 2 trucks and the battalion, with an actual bucket brigade line, soaking the foam in the large couch until it was "under control".  No special units were needed and no "all hands" was transmitted.  But there was a bucket hooked to L 161's tower ladder bucket as they returned to quarters. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on September 02, 2009, 01:49:08 AM
Great find and excellent pics. Thank you.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 21, 2009, 11:38:33 AM
I apoligze to all. I've actually been busy writing stories on another web site called www.ctfire-ems.com . It's also about a Fire Dept during "it's own busy War Years". It is Bridgeport, Ct, of course a much smaller city than New York City. But shortly before the FDNY War Years started to end, not only Bridgeport, Ct but other similiar size cities like Jersey City, Yonkers, and Providence, R.I. had a huge increase in fire activity in the mid 70s and 80s. I wrote about Bridgeport because I was familiar with it.
   If you'd like to check some of these stories out, go to www.ctfire-ems.com . Click on "Ct Fire Dept's General Forum", then go to "Bridgeport's War Years".
   But let me say this. By far this is still my favorite Web Site. I sure enjoy reading the threads of the busiset Fire Dept in the World. Hopefully if my memory kicks in, I'll be able to write a few more stories on "My Younger Buff Years". In the meantime Thanks to All that added to the stories.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on September 21, 2009, 01:15:08 PM
Bill,

Great posts on  www.ctfire-ems.com

Thanks,

Mike  fdnysbravest.com
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: patrickfd on September 21, 2009, 01:23:47 PM
I can remember when I was about 10-11 years old buffing a fire in Manhattan with my dad and as we were coming over the Brooklyn Bridge or maybe the Williamsburg Bridge there were 2 seven story buildings burning with fire coming out of every window in both buildings. The super pumper was working at this fire also. Unbelieveable site for a young kid to see. My eyes must have been bugging out of my head. Love the old pictures. The truckies wearing shoes only, the engine guys with the boots never pulled up. Anyone remember the orange gloves that were worn back in the day. I was issued those when I first went on the "job" and my dad said no way are you wearing those, so off to NYC to the fire store to get the gloves that the FDNY members wore. NYFD stamped on the cuff in red lettering.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 21, 2009, 09:48:27 PM
Thanks Mike on the kind words about the "Bridgeport's War Years". I'm glad you checked it out.

  Patfd, I too remember those orange gloves being issued. And like you, I bought my own pair stamped NYFD. I think the store at that time was on Northern Blvd in Queens  ???

  The other day I happened to come across a bag full of 35 mm color slides. I have rig shots and fires. Some of the fires I have no idea when they happened. The only thing I can tell is if they were FDNY or another dept. My big mistake was I never wrote their location and date. I remember trying to hurry and change the film when it ran out. In the winter, the film would be brittle to work with and my fingers would be numb. I can't tell you how may times I didn't line up the film properly because I was in a hurry trying not to miss anything. In the meantime, I was missing the best part of the job. Some buffs would carry two cameras, so when the film ran out, they'd just start using the other camera. "I'd say those guys were maybe a little smarter than I was".

   Today with the digital cameras and no film required, it's just snap, snap, snap etc. I sure wish they were around during those "War Years"
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 22, 2009, 12:48:05 PM
I have been advised by "mikeindabronx" that he has recently "Updated" and added to his War Years Photos of Bronx and Harlem. He has what I consider to be the "BEST WAR YEARS PHOTO'S" around. (He didn't mess up with the film like I did). One of the photos shows the bucket of Harlems Ladder 14 Tower at a job. It was a huge rearmount American LaFrance Tower, and the only other one was T.L. 163 in Queens. I was always amazed at how those guys got those Huge Monsters through the narrow streets. BUT THEY DID !
  Anyway, check out his latest photos. I don't think you will be disappointed. Go to, http://fdnysbravest.com .
  Thanks very much Mike.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 25, 2009, 09:22:39 PM
As a very young Buff going back to the very early 70's, there was something different about the way the FDNY would fight their fires. From my young bicycle buff years to when I first started driving maybe around 1965, the fires I saw were fought very different. Generally, I would see most fires fought from the outside in. The guys would move their 2 1/2 inch lines flowing the water from window to window. It would be a long battle as the flames died down in one window, but lite up in another. These were Good Firefighters but that was the way they were taught.
  I remember one of the First things that impressed me about the FDNY was how quickly they would put out a similar fire. As I watched these first few fires being fought by the FDNY I would see them break windows. Then of course the fire would get worse as the air reached the flames. I thought to myself "these guys (FDNY) are getting worse". The fire would now be blowing out several windows. Then in a matter of a few minutes, the flames turned to white colored smoke and the fire was under control. Instead of water going from the outside in, I would see water being shot from the inside out. I could NOT believe how quickly these fires were put out, lines picked up and those companies back to quarters. We now know that this is the correct way to fight a fire.
  For several years during the mid 60's and early 70's I saw firefighters from very good depts take a beating, especially on those cold nights for hours, instead of minutes. My father, who I called "Smoke" was one of them. (R.I.P. Smoke). I think it is safe to say that I was very fortunate to be able to watch, and observe the Tactics of no doubt the Best Fire Dept in the World. I didn't really realize it then, but I guess fighting a fire from the "inside-out" was probadly one of the first things the FDNY taught me.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: NZFDNYBuff on September 25, 2009, 09:26:50 PM
As a very young Buff going back to the very early 70's, there was something different about the way the FDNY would fight their fires. From my young bicycle buff years to when I first started driving maybe around 1965, the fires I saw were fought very different. Generally, I would see most fires fought from the outside in. The guys would move their 2 1/2 inch lines flowing the water from window to window. It would be a long battle as the flames died down in one window, but lite up in another. These were Good Firefighters but that was the way they were taught.
  I remember one of the First things that impressed me about the FDNY was how quickly they would put out a similar fire. As I watched these first few fires being fought by the FDNY I would see them break windows. Then of course the fire would get worse as the air reached the flames. I thought to myself "these guys (FDNY) are getting worse". The fire would now be blowing out several windows. Then in a matter of a few minutes, the flames turned to white colored smoke and the fire was under control. Instead of water going from the outside in, I would see water being shot from the inside out. I could NOT believe how quickly these fires were put out, lines picked up and those companies back to quarters. We now know that this is the correct way to fight a fire.
  For several years during the mid 60's and early 70's I saw firefighters from very good depts take a beating, especially on those cold nights for hours, instead of minutes. My father, who I called "Smoke" was one of them. (R.I.P. Smoke). I think it is safe to say that I was very fortunate to be able to watch, and observe the Tactics of no doubt the Best Fire Dept in the World. I didn't really realize it then, but I guess fighting a fire from the "inside-out" was probadly one of the first things the FDNY taught me.

That's a very interesting tactic Bill - and I hope to be hearing many more "buffing" stories soon. Thanks again for your verbal history of the New York "War Years"; I for one really appreciate it, seeing what they went through during the 60's and 70's.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: engine6 on September 27, 2009, 11:28:45 AM
Just a story that came to mind as I was reading some of the last post. I remember responding to a public housing unit, I think a Three story concrete attached. Well, it was midday on a weekend I think and I was assigned as a floater to a different engine company for the day. We were arrival and I remember seeing what I would describe as a good crowd saturating the street in front of the structure. The Lt. for the tour instructed the crew to keep your heads up for trouble as he called to PD for a response. As I exited the cab, I had been on the job about a year maybe and to my astonishment I saw the 1.75 pre connect was deployed and making the stretch. ( I was on the other side of the rig on arrival). I thought my partner had done so (the stretch without assistance) but I saw ronnie was standing next to me puzzled.

The three of us followed the line through the loud and intoxicated crowd to the apartment on fire (first floor) with fire running the ceiling from the kitchen to the rear and almost out the sliding glass doors. After securing the line and it was a mess, and calling for water I proceded to the front door landing. I noticed a woman in her late 60's I would say on the front lawn burned up pretty bad. With the advancement of the line through the front door I noticed heavy smoke from the midwaist up. As we were going in the bathroom seemed to be the place of orgin, after a quick knock down I was qurious. In the bath area there where about a hundread candles that had been burning and through out the apartment were different pictures and what not of some , I guess voo doo things. A large bottle of rubbing alcohol was found in the bath area also. As it was determined , the tenant had saturated  her self with the alcohol and by accident let her self up pretty good. That was my baptisim by fire, literally and the many more incidents I would encounter on the job responding to that area of the city.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 28, 2009, 04:00:18 PM
I was always amazed with the people in the streets. They saw so many fires themselves, that "They" would have a good idea on how the fire should be fought. As I was watching, and the guys would start to fight the fire, somebody would say to me; "They need one of those Cherry Pickers to go there". The "Cherry Pickers" that they were referring to were Tower Ladders. Sure enough, the Tower Ladder would come in and set up right where these people told me.
  I guess that comes with experience in seeing so many fires in your neighborhood. For the first few times visiting/buffing these area's the visitor/buff was usually in "Shock" at what was going on. After a while you just took everything for granted. Whether it was the civilians in the streets telling you how the fire should be fought, or just the abandoned burned out car on the block, it added up to be a Completely different Lifestyle from what the average person knew as Normal.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on September 29, 2009, 10:28:56 AM
People in the street. Row frames. First line into the building of origin. Second and third lines to the exposures, might even jump one or two buildings. People in the street see the lines going into buildings two or three from fire building, they are not to happy, as they don't know why. A lot of negative comments, like "ass holes the building is the one in front of you,"  was the more milder one, and perhaps some airmail. Interesting fires.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 29, 2009, 11:50:41 AM
Thank you *******. It's a true Miracle that "Anybody" could do any kind of job there, especially fight fires. I'd hear a few of the comments myself. Alot of those on the street were so full of booze or heron, or both, plus the fact that few had any education at all, only added to the problems. Every once in awhile I would have to reassure myself that; "Yes, I am still in America, the most advanced country in the world".
  The guy that told me about where to place the "Cherry Picker" was actually correct. But he might have been the only sober one on the entire street that day.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 16, 2009, 08:14:07 PM
In case anybody missed it in "Combo Fire Companies" thread. G-man has posted the number of Multiples for the FDNY in July, 1974 issue of The Fire Bell Club Newsletter. Are you ready for this. There were 80 Multiples listed. 67 second alarms, 12 third alarms, and 4 fourth alarms.
  According to that Newsletter, G-man reported Bronx had 33 multiples, Brooklyn had 27, Manhattan had 19, and S.I. had 1. Queens had none. No wonder there wasn't much left after those "War Years." Almost three Multiple alarms City Wide each day. Add to that the number of All Hands fires. I think the busiest month for multiples were in July, 1977. I believe they had 100 multiple alarm fires in that month, plus the all hands fires.
  Thanks G-man for your info.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on October 16, 2009, 11:42:46 PM
  July 1977's Runs, Workers and Multiples all got a little boost from the "Blackout of '77". ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 17, 2009, 06:36:37 PM
  July 1977's Runs, Workers and Multiples all got a little boost from the "Blackout of '77". ;)

  Yes, G-man you are correct. I thought about that later on. Maybe, the July, 1974 was actually the busiest other than the Blackout Issue. It's got to be pretty tough to beat 80 mutiple alarms in one month, even during the War Years. And during the War Years, there were many jobs that got 1 and 1, or 2 and 2, that by todays standards they would be at least an all hands or better. Like the time I remember taking in a five brick vacant, fully involved with No Exposures, being knocked down by 60/17 only. I think we discussed that fire earlier on "My Younger Years." (Funny thing, "My Younger Years", "Days of our Lives" - kinda sounds like a Soap Opera doesn't it ??? ).   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on October 17, 2009, 11:54:12 PM
I haven't been buffin' as long as you NFD however I do remember you telling us not to settle down for a good dinner at "Ehrings" (Godwin Terrace and 231 St.) A "sandwich on the side of the road" was sufficient back then and by God you were right.......More than one time I remember sitting down waiting for my "Chops and smashed" and an All Hands would come in a block away from our hang out....either the McDonalds on Webster or across from 46/27. Man.....we should have listened.....we would show up only to see you and Billy B from B Port getting back into the old red car and heading out........
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 18, 2009, 05:26:57 PM
I haven't been buffin' as long as you NFD however I do remember you telling us not to settle down for a good dinner at "Ehrings" (Godwin Terrace and 231 St.) A "sandwich on the side of the road" was sufficient back then and by God you were right.......More than one time I remember sitting down waiting for my "Chops and smashed" and an All Hands would come in a block away from our hang out....either the McDonalds on Webster or across from 46/27. Man.....we should have listened.....we would show up only to see you and Billy B from B Port getting back into the old red car and heading out........
Yes, "Bxboro", you must have a few Buffing years under your belt too, if you remember that old red car of mine. I think that was a 1979 Pinto Wagon. Yes, the McDonalds (that was the only close place to eat), or 46/27 Qtrs was my hang out. Myself and Billy B. (now retired Bridgeport, Ct Firefighter), used to bring a picnic lunch down with us because we were too cheap to go to a decent restraunt, plus like you said, we didn't want to leave the area, and there certainly wasn't anyplace around there to eat. By 1979, the War Years were starting to slow down. But there were still a lot of fires by anybody's standards. I think anybody that was there learned a lot from watching those guys work. Alot of the guys that buffed got on the job in some dept. We saw a few jobs and learned the way the job should be done. We got to meet some of the Best Firefighters and Role Models in the World. For us "Bxboro", and all our buddies, "don't you wish we could all do it all over again". "Bxboro", I have no idea who you are. I'd sure wish you'd "PM" me. We probadly got a lot to talk about.

B
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 19, 2009, 10:18:11 AM
Well, "Bxboro" was in contact with me. It turns out he started buffing the Bronx when he was 14 years old. He now has 15 years on a dept in Connecticut. His brother is also on the job in a busy Bronx Company. He also was a buff in his younger days. In addition was "Ratpack', Zack H., Timmy S., and Sankqdouce. They were all good kids and ALL eventually got on Career Depts. Now they are all seasoned firefighters on their own. Some have been promoted. They all got their start from being Volunteer Firefighters, and Watching the Best Fire Dept in the World, in Action.
  I'm sure that those busy FDNY Companies had no idea on what an affect they had on so many young lives. We all admired what these Firefighters did. Not only did they fight those many fires, but behind the scenes were a group of young kids watching and learning from your actions. Now, 20 or 30 years later, those young buffs are passing on some of the ideas they learned while watching these Brave firefighters at work.
  Now these young buffs that have grown up and gotten on the job have become Role Models to the younger members on their depts. They learned what the job of being a firefighter was all about, and they are passing that onto this next generation. But for them, it all started with buffing the FDNY several years ago. To that we all say "Thank you FDNY".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on October 19, 2009, 10:54:49 PM
Very well put NFD...Buffing in the 1980's was certainly nothing like the "War Years" however it was all many of us ever had the chance to experience. There was certainly enough work still around and I would consider the 80's as the tail end of the "War Years"...especially on July 4th. Fireworks certainly contributed to the majority of the fires in those days. It wasn't uncommon to pull into a block and be held up by fireworks in the street going off for what seemed 15 minutes!!!You were trapped!!! ADV's blocked access to the sidewalks for escape and the show itself made you stay anyway.L-59 still ran a Tiller....R-3 was still on 181 St. and "Shines Corner" was still at 3rd Ave.@East Tremont.I do remember many fires on Walton and Creston Aves. We always saw E-75 and L-33 at first due work. Morris, Sherman and Sheridan Aves. were always great to see E-92 AND TL-44 at work. Div. 6 was in with 50/19 on Wash Ave. I also remember seeing at the time the only 100' TL's operating....TL-163? I believe....and TL-14 (and one other) were Sutphen's at many Bronx fires together.....    
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on October 19, 2009, 11:24:03 PM
    You said R3 was still on 145th or did you mean 181st? ???
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on October 20, 2009, 05:40:33 AM
181 st....sorry !!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on October 20, 2009, 08:04:17 AM
One Sutphen was 119 and I believe 14 & 163 were ALF rear mount towers
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on October 20, 2009, 08:31:14 AM
I do remember 14 had a Sutphen in 1982 before their ALF.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 20, 2009, 08:36:43 AM
  Later on TL 14 and TL 163 got replacements. They got Huge 100 Ft. American LaFrance Ladder Towers. I think we might have discussed these Ladder Trucks earlier on this site, or on another thread. All I can say is the one that we saw work in the Bronx and Harlem, "14 Truck" sure caught it's share of work in those days.
  I may be wrong, but I think the Sutphens were the first Tower Ladders that were 100 footers. All the other Tower Ladders up to that time were 75 Ft. Later came the two ALF 100 Ft Tower Ladders and then came the first 100 Ft Mack Tower Ladders. I think they were TL 12, and TL 172.
  And "Bxboro" you are right about the activity in 92/44, and 75/33 picking up in the 1980s. As the years progressed and the War Years started to slow down, that became the busy place to buff in the Bronx.
  To my friend "Bxboro". It sure is good to get in touch with you. I think you used to look up to me as the "Buffing Expert". Well, I really got to tell you. I found out on this site that there ARE "EXPERTS", and sadly I'm not one of them. Some of these guys grew up with the War Years. They lived there and were a part of it, Every Day. But anyway, to my long time friend "Bxboro', "Welcome to the Party."
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on October 20, 2009, 10:47:00 AM
One Sutphen was 119 and I believe 14 & 163 were ALF rear mount towers
L14 got the first Sutphen in 1980 then L119 got the other Sutphen in 1981. In 1984 two ALF/LTI/Saulsbury 100 ft. towers were delivered and assigned to L14 and L163. I remember watching TL163 navigating that ALF tower with its frontal overhang under the Roosevelt Ave. El structure. :o ::)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on October 20, 2009, 11:58:55 AM
Minor correction to NFD2004: weren't the Mack Tower Ladders 95 feet, not 100 feet?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on October 20, 2009, 02:18:19 PM
I think your are right....I believe when they went to the tandem rear axles (mid 80's ?) they became 95' replacing the single axle 75'. I remember seeing TL 9 operating in Washington Heights once. Must have been because it was one of the first at the time. Quite a haul.......
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on October 20, 2009, 03:05:16 PM
 Busiest month I had in 82 engine during my years there was July of 1975. 82 had 210 structural fires with 205 hours of structural work for the month. Thank God for the towers, saw very few jobs up there where the 100" towers were needed, 75's did the job. Years later working as a deputy in the 3rd division in Manhattan there was an unwritten law that any job in St. Pat's immediately special call 3 100' towers to try and get the roof open. Wouldn't have worked, but you would not want to be the chief that let St. Patricks burn down without trying everything.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 20, 2009, 09:30:58 PM
Minor correction to NFD2004: weren't the Mack Tower Ladders 95 feet, not 100 feet?

  "Johnd," you and "Bxboro" are right. Those Mack TLs were 95ft. But I think the ALF Ladder Towers (14 & 163) were 100 footers. Like G-man said; navigating those ALF Towers under the "EL" Structures were no easy chores. Sometimes I have a tough time getting my subcompact car through there.
  And Thanks Chief for your info on Engine 82 in July, 1975. "210 structural fires", with "205 hours of structural work for the month" is a record that I'm sure, "Will NEVER will be Broken". That's about 7 hours of "structural" firefighting "EVERY DAY of the MONTH". And that doesn't count the car fires, rubbish fires, or the MFAs. I think it's pretty safe to say, "not too many of us out there that can relate to that".
  And Chief, you're right, "I wouldn't want to be the guy responsible for burning down St Pats in the Heart of Manhattan. Those priest get pretty upset. I found that out my last night on the job. It was Christmas Eve, 2003 during the Midnight Mass. A kid pulled two pull stations and we couldn't reset the alarm. This was right during the Sermon. Needless to say, the people and the priest were NOT at all too happy when we showed up and couldn't fix the problem. I hate to think what it would be like if we burned the roof off. (The Church I went to is also called St Patricks Cathedral, but NOT in The Heart of Manhattan).
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: tl-ff on October 21, 2009, 08:46:55 PM
Any of you oldtimers have a list of what companies had an auxillary unit in quarters? I know my house 229/146 had a company of aux. But how many more were out there and what were their designations?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 21, 2009, 08:48:16 PM


  "Bxboro", looks like we weren't the only ones to hang out under the Cross Bronx Expressway across from 46/27. "Mikeindabronx" also hung out there during the 70s and 80s. "Mikeindabronx" has shared with us some of his Great photos of the Bronx and Harlem during those Busy Years. That 46/27 was a good location. In the beginning for me, the hang out was E58/L26 in Harlem. That goes way back maybe 1968-70. Then came probadly the most Famous Buff Hang Out of all. Angie's Market, across from Eng 82/Lad 31. They wrote a book about how busy E82 was and there was plenty of activity in that area within 2-3 miles to go from one job to the next. I'd say 1970-76. In the summer of 1976 and into 1977 Bushwick seemed to be the hot spot. I found a good spot at Broadway and Koskiosko (how do you spell it), at a McDonalds. You could hit Bed-Sty, Brownsville, and Bushwick pretty easy. Those years I spent time in Brooklyn and the Bronx. From about 1978/79 until just recently, it was at E46/L27, or the then "NEW" Micky D's on Webster Ave near Clairmont Ave. That was when 92/44, E42, and 75/33 really started to pick up.
   Now a days you can probadly find "NFD2004" at the Micky D's on Fordham Rd and Southern Blvd, as the north Bronx Companies have picked up. Like E38/L51, or E62/L32. So if you happen to see an Old Fat Guy standing near a blue Nisson Sentra, probadly holding a portable scanner in that parking lot, stop by and say "hello". You might even get yourself a McDouble Cheeseburger out of it.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 21, 2009, 08:59:52 PM
Any of you oldtimers have a list of what companies had an auxillary unit in quarters? I know my house 229/146 had a company of aux. But how many more were out there and what were their designations?

  "ti-ff", As an Old Timer, I'm not sure what you are referring to as Auxilliary Units. I do have a few friends that were "Auxilliary Firefighters". One was with Eng 83, and I know of another guy who might have been with Eng 91. They rode the rigs and generally assisted with hooking up etc. Maybe your referring to extra units in the firehouse. I'm Not sure but didn't your house (229/146) have a "Purple K Unit". I'm sorry, I can't help you more. I hope that maybe "G-man" or "Johnd248" might be able to help you.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on October 21, 2009, 09:05:14 PM
...what companies had an auxiliary unit in quarters? I know my house 229/146 had a company of aux.

A *company* of Aux.??  Do you mean +/- 25 guys on the roster? WTF!  As far as I know few houses had CD pumpers stored there, either as spares or for Auxiliary training purposes.  As to the latter I remember E309 in Brooklyn and E159 in 'Static' Island.   But a company of auxiliaries?  If that was so, I'm d--n sorry I missed out on it!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: dillondotcom on October 21, 2009, 10:48:03 PM
What was Hunts Point like back then?  Did 94/48 catch a good amount of work?  I have heard some stories of what that neighborhood was like until the late 80's early 90's.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on October 21, 2009, 10:53:46 PM
...what companies had an auxiliary unit in quarters? I know my house 229/146 had a company of aux.

A *company* of Aux.??  Do you mean +/- 25 guys on the roster? WTF!  As far as I know few houses had CD pumpers stored there, either as spares or for Auxiliary training purposes.  As to the latter I remember E309 in Brooklyn and E159 in 'Static' Island.   But a company of auxiliaries?  If that was so, I'm d--n sorry I missed out on it!

When I was a kid, I remember a 1953 WLF CD pumper housed at E274..  I  think it might have been CD 16.....maybe>
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on October 21, 2009, 11:34:25 PM
I have a list dated Oct 1954 with C.D. pumpers and the firehouses they were located at. On that list they show C.D. 16 at E272 so there's a possibility it moved to E274. This list has the C.D. pumper numbers in RED
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on October 21, 2009, 11:40:02 PM
  This list is incomplete and may not be 100% accurate so any help with additional information would be appreciated ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on October 22, 2009, 07:39:59 AM
Dillondotcom, Hunts Point was a very busy area. E94 & L48 did allot of work, they had everything from P/D to factories. Plus it was loaded with hookers who chased the truck divers going to the Bronx Markets. Very rough area as some of the other Bronx guys can tell you. I'm sure someone else can elaborate even more so help me out MEN.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 22, 2009, 08:29:03 AM
What was Hunts Point like back then?  Did 94/48 catch a good amount of work?  I have heard some stories of what that neighborhood was like until the late 80's early 90's.

  "Mattyphoto" is EXACTLY RIGHT about 94/48. It was one really Nasty Place there on Senaca Ave/Hunts Point area. Quick story, one night my buddy and myself happened to ride by that firehouse. We went around the block and everything was vacant or burned out. There were numerous street lights that were shot out or not working. It was DARK, Dreary, and Depressing. My buddy commented to me, "Hey Willy, how would you like to work in that place". (referring to the firehouse 94/48). Actually, "I probadly would have loved it". But the truth is, "believe me, it was One Very Nasty Place". Also 94/48 caught a huge amount of work back in the days with 82/31, at that time the Arson Captital of the World. So "Dilliondotcom", if the old timers tell you how busy it was, "you gotta buy it". Those guys aren't full of B.S., they sure earned their pay. (I think in the Documentary "The Bronx is Burning", if you look closely, one of the jobs shows some guys from 94/48 on it).
   And thanks "kfd274" and "G-man" for the info on the CD Rigs. I wasn't aware of that at all.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on October 22, 2009, 09:56:44 AM
I never knew of any auxiliary companies.  I served as an auxiliary from 1964 to 1973; there were many companies that had auxiliaries.  Some rode with the apparatus and some rode to calls in the their personal vehicles.  I always thought of it as a privilege; I slept over at the firehouse, ate meals with the members, rode on many calls (over 500 in one year), and helped with the "committee work" ( making beds, sweeping floors, etc).
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on October 22, 2009, 09:37:20 PM
I have a list dated Oct 1954 with C.D. pumpers and the firehouses they were located at. On that list they show C.D. 16 at E272 so there's a possibility it moved to E274. This list has the C.D. pumper numbers in RED

That's an interesting list.  None shown for E274.  But there was a CD pumper there for many years.  Parked on the right side of the house, and E 274 on the left with a hose wagon in back ( first a 1941 WLF, then a 1947 ALF pumper as a hose wagon)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on October 22, 2009, 11:39:27 PM
I have a list dated Oct 1954 with C.D. pumpers and the firehouses they were located at. On that list they show C.D. 16 at E272 so there's a possibility it moved to E274. This list has the C.D. pumper numbers in RED

That's an interesting list.  None shown for E274.  But there was a CD pumper there for many years.  Parked on the right side of the house, and E 274 on the left with a hose wagon in back ( first a 1941 WLF, then a 1947 ALF pumper as a hose wagon)
  Like I said, maybe C.D. 16 shown with E272 was moved to E274. ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on October 23, 2009, 07:39:31 AM
We can add E79 to the list. They had one there for many years. I remember because as an explorer scout at E88 we got to use it for drills. But I don't remember the rig#.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on October 23, 2009, 09:03:20 AM
CD 47 wound up at E79, and CD 3 was there for a while also. CD 1 went from 48 to 88 and stayed there for most of the 1960's until 88-2 arrived.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on October 23, 2009, 09:34:05 AM
Back to Hunts Point........In the 80's I remember many fires in that long row of 4 Bricks on Hunts Point Ave. opposite Gilbert Pl. Lots of vacants down there back then. Also there were some large "junk yard" fires. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: tl-ff on October 23, 2009, 12:01:00 PM
Gentlemen no offense. I don't know much about the auxiliaries, which is where my post comes from. I know my house had a few auxiliaries and there was CD rigs scattered around. But that's all I know. I don't know how they were organized or if there was any form of rank structure. I wasn't born until 78 so most of this is before my time.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on October 23, 2009, 12:01:20 PM
CD 47 wound up at E79, and CD 3 was there for a while also. CD 1 went from 48 to 88 and stayed there for most of the 1960's until 88-2 arrived.
Thanks for the input, that list was dated Oct. 1954 and it looks like the 1954 WLF C.D.'s 53 thru 75 had not yet been assigned to firehouses.  
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: tl-ff on October 23, 2009, 12:20:37 PM
Any of you oldtimers have a list of what companies had an auxillary unit in quarters? I know my house 229/146 had a company of aux. But how many more were out there and what were their designations?

  "ti-ff", As an Old Timer, I'm not sure what you are referring to as Auxilliary Units. I do have a few friends that were "Auxilliary Firefighters". One was with Eng 83, and I know of another guy who might have been with Eng 91. They rode the rigs and generally assisted with hooking up etc. Maybe your referring to extra units in the firehouse. I'm Not sure but didn't your house (229/146) have a "Purple K Unit". I'm sorry, I can't help you more. I hope that maybe "G-man" or "Johnd248" might be able to help you.

 We still have the purple mess rig.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on October 23, 2009, 12:52:26 PM
tl-ff, there were ranks in the auxiliaries, like johnd248 was a Lt. I don't remember if it went above the rank of Capt. It was along time ago for me. so any help out there?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on October 23, 2009, 05:24:00 PM
I don't think they went above Captain and there were very few of them.  One Captain was Dan Buckley who was assigned to Engine 248 before I got there in 1964.  He went on to be a well known dispatcher and supervisor in Brooklyn and Manhattan.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: AuxWarYearsCapt on October 24, 2009, 11:19:19 PM
johnd248, yes you are correct, the highest rank in the Auxiliary Fire Corp which was officially know as Fire Emergency Division (FED) was indeed the rank of Captain. When I joined the FED program in 1972 as a Aux. FF., we  had 8 Aux's assigned to E 319. At that time only one of those was a active member and he was a Lt.. The commanding officer of the house was the only person permitted to request  a promotion for Aux. members. In my case I was promoted to Aux Lt. in 1973 and the to Aux. Capt in 1974. There was a Aux. Capt designated for each boro to make sure all paperwork was in order for all Aux's assigned to that boro.  There were monthly meetings that
all Aux's were required to attend and were held at either E 309 in Brooklyn by Aux. Capt. Tony Ramondi ( E 245 ) or at E 319 in Queens,
by me Aux. Capt. Doug Marra ( E 319 ). Also held were drills at Welfare Island now know as Roosevelt Island, which was the FDNY training center.  From all the paperwork I had seen the FED was very active at one time. Mostly all  of the Aux's were assigned to Engine Co's but there were a few Aux's assigned to a Truck Co's. As far as the CD's ( Civil Defense Rigs ) at E 319 we had CD 22 stored in our quarters. When the rig went out of quarters for a CD drill, it was manned by a FDNY Officer, a FDNY Chauffer and 4 Aux. members.
The CD pumpers were a big help in the Red Hook area of brooklyn on election night every year. On that night there were large Barn Fires
Set which was for some reason a tradition. Approx 5 CD pumpers were manned by the Aux's and were assigned to the quarters of either
E 203 or E 204 and responded to barn fires only. But all things come to a end and so did the FED Auxiliary Fire Corps. ( R I P )
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1261Truckie on October 25, 2009, 01:03:02 AM
I started riding with E-280 in September 1968, crossed the floor to L-132 in January of 1969 and stopped riding in 1975 when I moved from the City. I was promoted to Aux Lt in 1970 and Aux Capt in 1971.

132 was a good house. The men were very receptive to an Auxiliary. I had been preceded there by a gentleman named Jerry Grady. He was a real good guy, had the repsect of all the men and was a tough act to follow.

It's a shame the Auxiliaries have ended. I can understand why, but it's still sad. There were many good people associated with the program, both on the Auxiliary side and the uniformed FDNY side.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on October 25, 2009, 10:20:48 AM
Lone319Wolf: I remember the election night fires in Red Hook.  I believe the fires you refer to were "bonfires" , not barn fires.  After all, this is Brooklyn we are talking about, not Iowa. :D :D :D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on October 25, 2009, 10:23:49 AM
When I rode with Engine 248, there was an auxiliary at Ladder 157 named Richie Sheirer.  Really good guy and good friend; he became a dispatcher and ultimately was the head of OEM for the entire city.  I can still picture him riding the side running boards of Ladder 157's American LaFrance tiller truck.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on October 25, 2009, 12:00:01 PM
Found an interesting article in Autum 1962 WNYF - "Fire Auxiliary Corps". 

Commissioner Thompson announced the intention to grow the auxiliary fire fighting force.  On October 12, 1962, the Commissioner "...called on all retired members of the Department, and all other able-bodied citizens to register at their nearest firehouse for voluntary duty with the Fire Auxiliary Corps (Civil Defense)." 

The Cold War concerns of the 1960s gave rise to a very active auxiliary program as the "War Years" started in the city. October 1962 happened to be when the Cuban Missile Crisis was taking place.  The FDNY Auxiliary Corps was in already place through World War II, to provide FDNY manpower assistance during the war (along with the many squads in different divisions). FDNY was stripped of many firefighters who were serving in the military during WWII.  The Cold War concerns of the 1960s gave rise to a very active auxiliary program as the "War Years" started in the city. 

The number of "registered and trained" auxiliaries was reported to be about 1000 in WNYF in 1962.  The Commissioner wanted to raise the total to "50,000" to "insure sufficient trained personnel in event their services should be required."

The article continued: "Training sessions will be conducted at local fire houses, and, if enrollment is heavy enough, additional training facilities and instruction will be provided during evening and weekend hours at the new Training Center on Welfare Island.

In addition to volunteers, the Commissioner requested cooperation of local business firms in making available any trucks that could be used in the program...These trucks would be manned by competent members of the Department, with fire equipment to be used for auxiliary purposes.

Commissioner Thompson also called on other City Commissioners and Department Heads, whose male employees had not previously been assigned to any specific duties inb the Civil Defense set-up, to dispatch such people to local fire houses for needed training.

If the demand arises, this Department stands ready to expand its operation and keep all its personnel on Emergency Re-call status.

Only by the wholehearted and complete cooperation of all our citizens can we show the World and the Nation that we are willing to do our utmost to save our City in the event of an attack."

Does anyone remember all the open cab Ward LaFrance pumpers from the 1950s that were still used all over the city as the early War Years developed?  They had circular red-white-blue "CD" emblems.     
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on October 25, 2009, 12:17:38 PM
   Many of those Ward LaFrance C.D. pumpers were later used as hosewagons and spares. I remember E83 used a C.D. pumper as their wagon rather than their 1947 (ex-E220) ALF, E37 used C.D.41 as their hosewagon. Also C.D.'s 2, 3, 7, 10, 47 & 49 were often seen used as spares in Bronx. How many of you remember the "pump-and-roll" capability of those Ward LaFrances which was something that was really appreciated during brush fire seasons.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: AuxWarYearsCapt on October 25, 2009, 03:11:30 PM
G-Man, Sorry for the grammer.......It was one of those moments trying to type and my grand daughter crawling on the bed.....
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: AuxWarYearsCapt on October 25, 2009, 03:40:40 PM
Mack,  As you stated the CD pumpers were very not well protected for the members that were riding. It got very cold in the open cab and more so the open back step. The CD pumper was somewhat identical to our assigned rig. Both rigs have 1/2 length doors with a piece of glass that was slanted, which made the cab somewhat more less windy but again it was cold. The open cab 51 Ward Lafrance rig that was assigned to the co. was modified by  the members. A few large pieces of metal as a frame and a old heavy piece of a canvas made a great cab cover. The rear step was framed out of wood for protection. At the start of the war years, we were relocated very often to the south bronx co's.. The problem that ended up starting was that when our assigned rig went OOS we would use the CD rig as a spare which had no protection for the members, so the dispatchers never relocated us . In 1968 when our 1951 was replaced,
we recieved a hand me down 1962 International Harverst from E 290 which was an enclosed cab and a bench that ran behind the officer and chauffer. It was somewhat protected with a short hangover, but it was still not totally enclosed. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: AuxWarYearsCapt on October 25, 2009, 03:45:27 PM
Guess its just one of those days...........Meant to tell johnd248 I had the bad grammer or is it graammeerr.........
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on October 25, 2009, 05:44:43 PM
It's "wicked bad gra-mah" in Boston, Lone319Wolf.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on October 26, 2009, 11:17:57 PM
Wolf, your '51 Ward had the half doors. No CD pumpers or the regular Wards from 1952 or '53 had doors of any kind.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on October 27, 2009, 08:08:55 AM
... No CD pumpers or the regular Wards from 1952 or '53 had doors of any kind.

Much like this:

(http://www.nyfd.com/brooklyn_engines/engine_283/cd-283s.jpg)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 27, 2009, 08:27:09 AM
Thanks "bklyndisp54" for that photo. With all this talk about CD Pumpers, I just couldn't picture what the guys were talking about. Thanks to you, I now vaguely remember seeing a few of these rigs. And somebody mentioned about the bon fires on election night. I can remember that too.
  Getting back to those CD Pumpers, I remember a few of the pumpers in Bridgeport and Stratford, Ct having pumpers with CD Decals on those rigs. Bridgeport had American La France and Stratford had a few Macks, of course all open cabs. This might have been in the 1950s. They were all assigned as regular Engine companies though.
  So to all, I thank you for that info.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on October 27, 2009, 10:16:36 AM
  In the photo above, it looks like E283 was using CD32 as a spare, yes or no? ???
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on October 27, 2009, 04:39:46 PM
That photo is located at nyfd.com and you are viewing it at a link to them.  So I have no details to offer.

Would like to see more CD pumper photo's, as that was my all-time favorite rig... but the pic shown is all I could find.

Maybe at the Mand library?   Hmmmm. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: AuxWarYearsCapt on October 27, 2009, 05:08:26 PM
thanks for the pic bklyndisp54...........After looking at the apparatus book in the commanders office the CD rig stored in quarters was a 1952......I only reason I remembered doors was the brothers make them out of wood when we used the CD as a assigned rig....
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: AuxWarYearsCapt on October 27, 2009, 05:14:24 PM
G-man,  The picture u posted sure looks like 283 was using CD32 as a spare. A chauffer, officer and the boys on the back step.  The same was done in the past in our house. The assigned rig went OOS, we used the CD22 rig until our rig came back from shops.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: HCO on October 27, 2009, 08:17:51 PM
Re CD pumpers:

The Mand Library, at the FDNY Fire Academy, which has almost 20,000 photos of FDNY apparatus, both past and present, does have individual photos of all of the 65 Ward La France CD pumpers of 1952 (thirty CD1 thru CD30), 1953 (ten CD31 thru CD40) and 1954(twenty-five CD41 thru CD65). There are slight differences in appearance between each of the three year deliveries. They can be viewed at the Library, however no copies of photos can be made.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 27, 2009, 09:20:59 PM
Thank You "HCO" on that info about the CD Pumpers. For me, this was a learning experence. I learned how many CD rigs there were, how they were manned and pretty much what houses they were kept at. I thank you and the others for that.
  And maybe somebody can help me here too. After the War Years and things started slowing down, one of my favorite things was to spend time over at the Fire Academy. It was a great place to buff out of as the bridge would take you to the South Bronx, Harlem and Northern Queens without too much trouble. I really enjoyed watching the guys train and probadly picked up a few tricks watching. Also I enjoyed going to the Mand Library and it sure was a great place to get rig shots.
  Then when 9/11 came that all changed. Security was posted at the gate and no longer could I watch or take pictures. I didn't even ask about going to the Mand Library. So for the last few years, I haven't even tried. Is there a way that it is possible to watch and take pictures like I used to, at "The Rock" without going through the Third Degree. I even thought about getting a letter from my dept saying that I am a retired firefighter.
  I miss all that, but I don't want to step on anybody's toes. I only visit NY now about once a month or so. If you can help, I appreciate it.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 28, 2009, 11:29:26 AM
I recieved two "PMs" today (10/28/09) which I am very thankful for. One was from a member of this site offering his help in my interest to visit the Mand Library again. I will follow his advice and hopefully visit one of my favorite spots again. The Mand Library at "The Rock". Thank you for your concern and help.
  The other "PM" I recieved was from a "friend" of Lt Richard Hamiltons, "Younger Son". I talked about Lt Hamilton on page one at the very beginning of My Younger Buff Years. I had been trying to find out about him for a very long time. This member said that Lt Hamilton now lives in California, but is not in good health. He is fighting his health problems as he fought the fires he fought. In his book, 20,000 Alarms, I think one chapter is called : "I'll be home for Christmas-maybe". He responded to both the plane collision in Brooklyn/S.I., and shortly after the ship fire, "The Constallation". (I believe he suffered severe burns to his hands at that fire). I think both have been discussed on this site. During his years of Rescue 2, he had a HUGE Impact on both myself and my brother "georged4997". Way back in 1968 is when Lt Hamilton introduced us first to the Greatest Fire Dept in the World. "The FDNY". We both followed it ever since.
   Once again, hats off to this web sites owners, who funds this on their own. If it wasn't for this site, I would NOT have been contacted about our long time friend and Role Model, Lt Richard Hamilton, retired FDNY. Thank You.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on October 28, 2009, 12:22:00 PM
Willie D: you might try to contact Honarary Chief of the Department Jack Lerch about the Mand Library and access to it.  He worked there for years and I am not sure if he is still there.  He is a great source of information.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on October 28, 2009, 01:06:52 PM
He's still there, knows everything about FDNY apparatus.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: whiteoak40 on October 28, 2009, 08:39:22 PM
Good evening gentlemen. I just registered to the site and this is my first post. I have been enjoying this site very much for quite some time now and wanted to share my thanks to the many stories. I grew up in the 60's and 70's in Lancaster County PA. and my father and brothers were very active in a volunteer company about 1 mile outside of Lancaster City. My biggest ambition was to be either a Philadelphia or New York City firefighter. My dad was the Assist. Chief and Chief for about 25 years and my brother was a Captain. I liked working the nozzle and getting right into the thick of things.
  I can remember in the mid seventies we would listen to Philly and FDNY on our old Plectron scanner and recorded many of those nights in disbelief of the amount of fires taking place. I read Richard Hamilton's 20,000 Alarms and Dennis Smith's Report from Engine Co. 82. I meet Dennis at the Lancaster County Fire Expo around 1975 and he signed my book. I remember one night while listening an Engine, Ladder and BC had a 4 story tenement fully involved and asked for an additional engine and ladder and the dispatcher told them it would be at least 1 1/2 hours to get them any help. I guess this was the normal situation in those times.
  Unfortunately my ambitions did not come to light for many reasons but my heart is still there. If anyone is interested I can post a web site for Lancaster County-Wide Communications? It is a very good web site and lists all the Lancaster County Company's and there individual web sites. I belonged to Lafayette Fire Company.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 28, 2009, 09:23:15 PM
"Whiteoak40", Welcome aboard. As you can probadly tell, you weren't the only one listening to the FDNY on a scanner with "sheer amazement" in those very Busy War Years. For anybody that was around then, we all remember those dispatchers struggling to get an Engine or a Ladder as soon as they became available. I hope you got a chance to play some of the audios that "r1smokeater" posted from the War Years.
  You mentioned Philly. There is a good web site out there called www.PhillyFireNews.com . They have alot of great stories, rig shots, and history on it. I'm sure you'll enjoy it. I think also Lancaster County, Pa is on it too. But if you want to know about the FDNY, "this is the place to be". (We got a few guys on here that I think were Buffs before the FDNY started --- "Sorry Guys").
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: whiteoak40 on October 28, 2009, 09:40:57 PM
Thanks "nfd2004" I spend many an evening just reading the posts and the rundowns. Thanks for the information on Philly. I am in the process of trying to find the cassette tapes I had which are probably in the attic. www.lcwc.co.lancaster.pa.us this should get you to the Lancaster County site if not just google Lancaster County-Wide Communications. I have great interest in architecture and old firehouses are on the top of my list. I am a production manager for a large commercial mill house and also have my own business doing residential millwork. I would love to come to NYC and take pictures of the fire stations. I have seen many of the pictures on this site and I believe it or not use them to design some of my millwork.
  I get a chuckle out of the friendly digs of the other members, but that is one of the great things about firefighters. One minute your really on them and the next minute you have their back.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on October 29, 2009, 11:47:46 AM
A story from those days about "no companies available." One day in 82 at a job the deputy (6th Div.) tells me that they had just gotten orders from Com. O'Hagan that they are forbidden to transmit additional alarms for vacants. I just said "you do what you have to and so will we." A couple of days later we get a good job about two blocks from qtrs. H type building 5 stories with heavy fire 2nd floor apartment. Busy day and we are there alone with 31. We knock down the 2nd floor. Fire was extending to upper floors. Was a pretty good building, still intact. We knock down the fire in the 3rd and 4th floor apartments. I remember getting to the 5th floor landing and seeing heavy smoke pushing under two apartment doors. My guys get up there with the line and I just said "leave the line and come with me." We go down stairs, a couple of engines are there operating in the other wing of the building. Same deputy is in the street that told me no more multiples. I said to him "we knocked down the fires on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th floors, you have heavy fire in the two top floor apartments, my guys have had it we are going back to qtrs for either R&R or wait for the medical officer to be examined". He couldn't say anything ( I was a deputy for 17 years so I know the game), just said O.K. take the R&R.Never heard about "no multiples again." Interesting days.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on October 29, 2009, 01:22:00 PM
Excellent!!!!!  The things everyone went through back then.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 29, 2009, 07:46:05 PM
As Capt ******* of "82" said about being forbidden from transmitting multiple alarms for Vacants, the Buffs had also heard rumor of that. Knocking down fire on the second floor, then going to the 3rd, and 4th floor to knock down the fire, all while using one Engine and one Ladder is unimaginable for even the most "Seasoned Firefighters" today. For anybody who wasn't around during these "War Years", now you can understand why these guys are referred to as "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters". One Engine Company and a Truck, knocking down three floors of fire in an "H" type building. "Were these guys Firefighters or What" !!!
  I am very Thankful that we have the Captain of Engine 82 who was there during those extremely busy peak War Years of 1973-1976. I appreciate all the stories he has shared with us. Not only the Captain of 82, but as we all know, he also served as the Lt of Engine 50. Another busy War Years Company. He retired as a very high ranking Chief Officer within the FDNY. A Hard Earned and Well Deserved Position.
  Chief *******, we can only hope that you are enjoying your well deserved retirement. I think it is safe for me to say that You and your Brothers have the Highest Respect from all of us Firefighters and Buffs on this site.
  "THANK YOU"
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kidfrmqns on October 31, 2009, 09:15:07 AM
When I was growing up in Queens I seem to remember the 59 Battalion being formed and then shut down within a 10 year span. For some if not all of this time I remember them being in quarters with E-319. These were not very busy areas during this time. Does anyone know why the 59 was created and then why it was disbanded?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on October 31, 2009, 10:37:05 AM
How many out there remember the 17th Division in Brooklyn?  I believe they were in Bushwick somewhere and didn't stay around all that long.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: AuxWarYearsCapt on October 31, 2009, 05:50:57 PM
johnd248..The 17th Div was established back in the war years and quartered at the E 252 which now is known as Squad 252.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on October 31, 2009, 08:08:11 PM
What about Battalion 60
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 31, 2009, 08:35:22 PM
Yes, I can remember the 17th Division, the 59 and 60 Battalions. As somebody said, "59" was with Engine 252, now Sq 252. But where were the 17th Div and 60th Batt. ? I'm just guessing that they were closed down during the budget cuts of the mid 1970s. When you think about it now, these companies and many others were cut during the busiest time in History. In fact thats why they were probadly added in the first place. No wonder the word was out, don't go to a multiple alarm for a vacant building fire.
  I remember watching the TV News and they were interviewing several people in the neighborhood of Eng 60 and Lad 17. They were cutting Ladder 17-2 and the people were saying the reason there are two ladder trucks in the same firehouse is because there were so many fires. I'm sure the 59, and 60 along with the 17th Div got cut all around the same time.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on October 31, 2009, 09:57:32 PM
I think Battalion 60 was in E 218. It was the only company in the battalion
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: AuxWarYearsCapt on October 31, 2009, 10:29:06 PM
Regarding the 17th Div, 59th Batt and the 60th Batt..........Div 17 was indeed quartered at E 252 which is now known as Squad 252 in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn. The 17th was established in Oct. 1969 and disbanded in July 1975. They were put into service due to the war years. For the 59th Batt, they were re-established and quartered at E 319 in Middle Village, Queens from July 1984 to Nov 1989.
The 59 took over the workload for the 51st (who moved from E 294 to E 308), 46th and the 28th Batt's. The 59 did approx 2200 runs per year. The 59 went into service the same day the Haz Mat Unit was established. The 59 had a great bunch of bosses when it started at E 319...The 59 Commander was BC McQuade from Batt 33 with BC Moro from Batt 55, BC Miller from Batt 34 and BC Devlin from the rock. I rode very often with the Batt since I was an Auxiliary Capt. assigned to E 319.........And yes turk182 hit it on the head. The 60 was established in Oct. 1970 and disbanded July 1975. They were quartered with E 218 who was the only co. in the 60th Batt.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on November 01, 2009, 10:30:22 AM
The 60th Battalion was what they called a roving Battalion. It would respond out of different Battalion qtrs. where the fire activity was high for that tour, or, anticipated. One of the chief's in the 60th was a BC Sowinski. He transferred to the 27th Battalion in with82/31 around 75. He was a great guy and firefighter. He would always be whistling in qtrs when he was in the kitchen. The guys had a little game with this. If you could get him to whistle a tune, you had a free meal for the tour. You couldn't let him know what you were doing, you had to whistle or sing some song yourself and see if he picked up on it. Very few got a free meal. Good guy, passed away about 5 years ago, retired as a deputy.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: scarter on November 01, 2009, 01:52:16 PM

My buff years started in the 80's. I had started riding with E 75 -L 33 and one day had arranged to ride the engine.When I got to the firehouse the engine was out but L 33 was in quarters. While talking with the guy on housewatch they got a run first due for fire in a OMD. The truck officer told me to go with them and minutes later we were going down Jerome Avenue with me sitting between the officer and chauffeur, weaving in and out of the steel supports for the subway on Jerome Avenue when your heard a big crash and bang. The Chauffeur  says " we just lost the Hurst Tool " and started to pull over. Just then the the Bronx CO is saying that they were getting calls for our box so the Officer says "forget it just go to the box". We pulled up and had - nothing. No smoke or fire - just a minor food on the stove. The officer says we gotta get our tool back so back we go. It had only been 5 minutes since we lost it and again we find - nothing. All that was there was a empty street and 2 guys sitting on milk crates drinking. The Officer goes over to the 2 guys and the negotiations begin. The Officer comes back and says 10 bucks a man. All the guys including myself paid up and the transaction was completed. A steel overhead door on one of the "auto repair shops" on Jerome Avenue went up and there was our Hurst tool. Back on the rig and back to Quarters.The guys on the truck seemed to take it as just another day on L 33. I was in awe.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on November 01, 2009, 02:00:36 PM
Batt. 60, organized 50 Hart St. @ Engine 218, 10/31/70 through 7/1/75

Batt. 59, organized 111-36 Merrick Blvd. @ E275, 6/13/70 through 7/1/75
             re-organized 78-11 67 Rd. @ E319 7/1/84 through 11/29/89

Div. 17, organized 617 Central Ave. @ E252 10/18/60 through 7/1/75

http://nyfd.com/history/cityhist.pdf
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 01, 2009, 06:23:14 PM
I thank you for that info on the 17th, 59 and 60. I wasn't aware that Batt 60 was a rover. But I do remember hearing those units. Those were some busy units in those days. But as I remember, pretty much everything was busy in those days.
   Thanks "scarter" for that story too. I remember you telling me that true story. "Scarter" or "Stuie" as he is called, has been a Great friend of mine for a long time. I remember when he first walked into the firehouse as a Probie. A young kid from Westport, Ct, home of the Million Dollar Mansions of Connecticut. Then I find out that before I went on the Fire Dept, from 1970-1975, I was the Letter Carrier that delievered mail to this kids Ct Mansion. Then I find out that he is also a FDNY Buff.
   Later on, he chaffered the rig that we were on together. He now rides in the seat that I kept warm for him. He's a Great Guy. Thank's Stuie.
   And sorry to my friends out there for getting a little off track.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 05, 2009, 08:07:06 PM
Came across these photos. I don't think they have been posted earlier. Let me see if I can get this right.
                 www.flickr.com/groups/938987@N24/pool   (hope its right).

  Also photos by Ricky Flores. "The Decline of The South Bronx".
                 http://www.flickr.com/photos/rickyflores/2381633450
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on November 05, 2009, 09:04:49 PM
The photos are great, thanks for the links.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 05, 2009, 09:07:45 PM
You're quite Welcomed there "Mr. Indabronx".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 06, 2009, 06:54:27 PM
As I look at those photos in "Decline of the South Bronx", it is hard to believe that things were so bad then. I remember it being compared to Berlin, Germany after being bombed out during WWII. But it wasn't bombed out. That was from the hundreds of fires that  destroyed apartment by apartment, floor by floor. Then building by building, then Block by Block. It was those FDNY Greatest Generation of Firefighters that battled these fires on a daily basis. For blocks and miles these scenes played out throughout the entire South Bronx. The buffs would compare the place to a Third World Country.
   Without pictures like this, it would be hard to describe the conditions that existed then. For the Newer Firefighters it gives them an idea of how hard these War Year Firefighters must have worked. For the Buffs, its hard to believe that there was so many fires in those days. For those War Year Fire Fighters, you risked your life over and over fighting those many terrible fires. There were No Easy Days. These Heroic Firefighters fought a daily war in the streets of the South Bronx, and several other neighborhoods of New York City.
   As a Buff who was there, I can only say: "Thanks to the Greatest Group of Firefighters this Country, or the World has ever seen".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on November 07, 2009, 12:39:26 PM
Yesterday was the anniversary of the 1973,  5 1/2 hour strike.  The strike was short, painful and, perhaps unavoidable.  The Department went back into service rapidly.  There is a great audio of the strike day (I think it is all Brooklyn) at  http://www.hfdradio.com/FDNY.htm (Hardford Fire Radio - a terrific site).  Amazingly, at 45 minutes into the clip, I discovered a run I was on with the 43 Bn - Box 3501 into Sea Gate, that night. 1 and 2 response to a Coney Island box for an occupied rooming house fire.  People trapped all over.  L 166 and L 161 must have pulled 2 dozen people or more out of the building with a heavy fire condition on arrival (thank God the dispatcher started out the 2nd truck when the box came in).  E 318, the only engine, made the resues possible with an amazingly fast line protecting the stairs.  It took a long time to get additional units on a busy night to the tip of Coney Island.  As frequently happened (and still happens), 3 companies and a battalion chief had to to the job of a full assignment for a long period of critical time.  It turned out to be a dispatcher's 5th alarm, one of several multiple alarms that that night after a busy day.  There was not even a close deputy chief available.  The 10th Division eventually arrived at the fire. It is worth listening to if you have a few minutes.  Louie Massuci (God bless), the 43 Aide and great firefighter, is the battalion voice requesting an urgent 2nd on arrival, a request to start the Rescue rolling, shouts what to do with a baby just rescued while in the middle of a progress report.  He, and everyone else who responded that night, earned their pay, which, by the way, was about $14,300 a year back then.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on November 07, 2009, 04:32:57 PM
During those years the "quiet" time for the day was in the morning from around 7AM until 12PM. Then it would be busy until the next morning again, with some days still having fires still during the quiet time. The day of the strike we (82 engine) missed 11 runs during the 4 hrs of the strike. If I remember right it ended at 1PM. None of the 11 runs were a job, one was a rubbish fire, responded to by an engine with probies from the fire academy. As the guys were putting their gear on the trucks at 1PM a box came in. I was off duty then so didn't respond. This box went to an all- hands. Within 30 minutes after the strike ended there were 3 all -hands going in the S. Bx. If the strike had lasted another hour there would have been major problems, fires , in the Bx.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 08, 2009, 07:47:21 PM
From "Mikeindabronx", he has posted more GREAT PHOTOS to his Web Site. These are "His" pictures and I'm Thankful that he allows us to post them here. If you check them out, "I think you'll be Impressed". These Great Photos show us what the FDNY War Years were all about. Mike has been able to preserve a very important part of History in the Fire Service that No Doubt will ever be repeated again. Thanks very much Mke for sharing these photos with us.

  Now if I can only do this right without screwing it up. Try this:
        http://www.fdnysbravest.com          (Hope it works).

  Thanks again Mike.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on November 08, 2009, 08:02:19 PM
Great except for one caption correction: The last photo of the April 1987 Bronx building collapse says Box 2145 but it was Box 2171, I know, I was there that day. ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on November 08, 2009, 08:11:58 PM
Thank you, I have corrected it.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 08, 2009, 08:38:03 PM
Great except for one caption correction: The last photo of the April 1987 Bronx building collapse says Box 2145 but it was Box 2171, I know, I was there that day. ;)

  "G-man" you sure know your stuff. There's not too much we can slip by you. We tried, but it just didn't work. But aren't they some Great Pictures though !!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on November 08, 2009, 09:58:19 PM
Great except for one caption correction: The last photo of the April 1987 Bronx building collapse says Box 2145 but it was Box 2171, I know, I was there that day. ;)

  "G-man" you sure know your stuff. There's not too much we can slip by you. We tried, but it just didn't work. But aren't they some Great Pictures though !!!!
  Great pictures, yes they are!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on November 09, 2009, 11:00:53 AM
great pictures, thank you.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: engine6 on November 10, 2009, 09:19:28 PM
mikeinthebronx Thanks for sharing those pics. They are classics !!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on November 10, 2009, 09:40:13 PM
Thanks for the great feedback.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1261Truckie on November 10, 2009, 10:27:30 PM
mikeindabronx,

Gotta add my 2 cents....those are great pictures !!!!

Since I started with 132 in Brooklyn, I wish you had crossed the river and shot some Brooklyn stuff.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 13, 2009, 08:21:11 PM

  The other "PM" I recieved was from a "friend" of Lt Richard Hamiltons, "Younger Son". I talked about Lt Hamilton on page one at the very beginning of My Younger Buff Years. I had been trying to find out about him for a very long time. This member said that Lt Hamilton now lives in California, but is not in good health. He is fighting his health problems as he fought the fires he fought. During his years of Rescue 2, he had a HUGE Impact on both myself and my brother "georged4997". Way back in 1968 is when Lt Hamilton introduced us first to the Greatest Fire Dept in the World. "The FDNY". We both followed it ever since.
 
I have heard from Lt Hamiltons daughter. She says his health has been a struggle, but he's sharp as a tack. He is now 86 years old and his two sons are 57 and 45. She reports her father never talked about the job because he didn't want the family to worry. She is really quite surprised to hear that her father made such an impact. It has been this web site and one other that allowed my brother and I to contact the family and friends of Lt Richard Hamilton, a Role Model we still look up to 40 or more years later.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Rigglord on November 15, 2009, 02:13:53 AM
Hello all.  My name is Ricky Flores and I'm the photographer whose work you guys are talking about during what you call the War Years.  I just wanted to back up those men who worked the South Bronx during the late 70's and 80's and say that it was exactly like they described it.  It was a time where the city systematically cut back services to our community with the sole exception, if I have this right, FDNY.  Landlords were either abandoning the buildings or burning them for insurance money.  We couldn't depend on cops or ambulances to show up but you called the Fire department and THEY ALWAYS CAME.   That dedication to our community is a bond that I took with me through out the rest of my life.  

One of my best stories about the FDNY came during the early 80's.  I was asleep at home when my phone rang and it was Bronx FDNY dispatch wanting to know how big the fire was across the street from my house.  I lived at 788 Fox Street, one of the H design buildings and my windows face Fox Street from inside the H.  I look out the window and I can see fire reflecting out from the windows across the street.  I tell the guy it looks big and it looks like its on Longwood Avenue.  He then 'encourages" me to go downstairs and take a look at exactly where the fire is at.  I'm wondering if this guy is for real and then dutifully run downstairs and run back up.  "It's pretty big,"  I tell the guy and the top floor is fully envolved and I heard him audibly sigh like a "oh shit" kind of noise and then he ask if that building is abandoned, 800 Fox Street. I told him that a family still lives there, probably one of the last families to live there and they lived on the top floor where the fire started. I told him that he better send out several alarms out too because it was a big fire.  Strange I got really good at the time in figuring out what you guys needed at the scene whether it was a trash fire or something more serious and those dispatchers got really good at using that information.  On hindsight, they had to, those men were getting hammered on a daily basis.

Here are several sets from Flickr that I wanted to share with you all;

http://www.flickr.com/photos/rickyflores/sets/72157604579178383/  (FDNY on the scene. Mostly in the Bronx, several from Manhattan)

The following set documents the wasteland that came as a results of all those fires.  

http://www.flickr.com/photos/rickyflores/sets/72157604615255164/  (The Decline of the South Bronx )

A small video incorporating the two above sets on Youtube.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NgFOvIARlDc

And lastly;

http://www.flickr.com/photos/rickyflores/2847724470/  ( The attack on the World Trade Center. )

For those men who work my community during that time, my profound thanks.  You guys gave and kept giving and I felt that I needed to let you know it from someone whose life you directly affected.

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on November 15, 2009, 09:02:32 AM
Really nice work,thanks for the links.

Mike
www.fdnysbravest.com
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on November 15, 2009, 03:10:30 PM
Nice work !!! Those are some priceless photos !!! I noticed one of the jobs early in the video was on Tinton Ave. 163/165 St. (row frames) I happened to be at that fire. Hot and humid Bronx summer day close to 100 degrees....unreal !! 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 15, 2009, 05:03:55 PM
"Rigglord". I'm the guy that posted those Great Pictures you had taken. I was searching to try and find any pictures of what things looked like after much of that area was destroyed by fire. Your pictures sure told the story. I remember walking through some of that rubble. That was probadly over 30 years ago. I knew things were bad, but at that time, just didn't realize how bad things really were. When I first saw your pictures, I also showed them to my wife. I let her know, "those were the streets where I chased the fires and walked those streets". She could not believe it. Looking at your pictures today, its hard for "me" to even believe it, and "I was there".

  I am truly grateful that you had preserved that time in history. Each picture is a story in itself. I hope you didn't mind me posting them. Your pictures showed the younger generation on here how fires destroyed entire neighborhoods.

  And we all greatly appreciate your story that you told. You lived there and saw it first handed.

  Thank you for Your Great pictures and Great Story.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Rigglord on November 16, 2009, 12:21:43 AM
I think I did the Tinton Avenue fire as part of a ride along but I'm not sure.  It was the typical job you guys use to hit during that period of time.  It is a pleasure sharing them with you guys and I don't have a problem with you folks sharing them with one another.  I am curious if anyone reading this blog responded to any of the fires at 800 Fox Street.  The majority of my photos were of that building taken over a period of time.  That the damn thing is still there is a source of amazement to me considering all the stuff I saw going down in that building.  I was wondering how many calls did that building received during that time or where I could find out something like that.


Ricky
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ******* on November 16, 2009, 09:45:07 AM
Viewed your pictures Ricky, brought back some memories. Your time period (years) is a little off though. The so called war years started around 1964, peaked in 1975 and was pretty much over, or even ended by 1980. Was in the Bx from 1/70 (E50) to 4/73, and then with 82 engine 9/73 to 5/76. Had many jobs on Fox street. 82 did around 1800 structural fires a year with about 1600 hrs. of structural work a year during this period. Busy boxes were 2323 Cauldwell and 160 with 50 and 2743 Charlotte and 170 with 82. Never knew why the city allowed neighborhoods to be burned out like they did. They never would have allowed Park Ave. and 60th street to be burned out in Manhattan, or 70th and 3rd Ave. Thanks for the pictures, so many of the guys are no longer with us, the war did take its toll.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on November 16, 2009, 04:51:28 PM
*******, you are absolutely correct in your time frame. The use of the term "War Years" has been creeping forward in time. I remember the summer of 1969, on leave from the service, driving down Southern Blvd on the way to DMV office in Hunt's Point. Block after block of burned out shells of buildings from Tremont Avenue on south. People said it looked like bombed out Berlin after the war. It was true, and I had been in Berlin the previous summer, where one could still see the remnants over the Wall in East Berlin.

One major reason (there were others) for the fall off after 1978 was the City's change to the Welfare laws that year. Recipients were no longer entitled to reimbursement as a result of fire, nor were they given priority for public housing, among other things. The number of arson and structural fires nose dived. Amazing.

Howard Cosell was ten years too late in his lofty comment during the Word Series that "the Bronx is burning".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 16, 2009, 08:27:48 PM
I have to agree about the timing of the War Years. As I remember the book "Report From Engine 82" had already come out around 1970/72. Dennis Smith had been writing that book before that time frame explaining how busy Engine 82 was. So adding the publication time etc, we could go back way before the book actually came out. In my own experience, I remember reading in a magazine at the library about the book coming out. It wasn't released until at least six months later. As a buff, I didn't start hanging out at Angie's Market across from Eng 82 until sometime in 1970. By then there were already several burned out buildings in the area.
  Prior to that I was spending time in Harlem, and those companies were really busy too, and they already had their share of burnouts. That was around 1968/69. Prior to that my first introduction to the FDNY was riding with Rescue 2. The night tour was catching about 18-25 runs, and maybe three jobs. I don't think Rescue 2 covered Brownsville jobs though. That was 1968.
  I also have to agree with the War Years peaking out around 1975. As I remember then, the fires were also starting to spread farther north in the Bronx, and also to the west. E42,48,88,and 92, were all starting to pick up. Also as E45,50,60,71,73,82, and 94 were still doing battle.(in DaBronx). In 1976/77 Bushwick became a Hot Spot. And then the Blackout came in 1977 making that a very busy year.
  I noticed a big drop in fires starting around 1978. Extra Fire Marshalls were sworn in and thats also around the time the rules changed for new housing. The 1980s still saw alot of activity but the War Years were pretty much over. Thats when you could ride through some neighborhoods of the South Bronx and see areas like Rigglord has pictures of in the Decline of The South Bronx.

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on November 16, 2009, 11:11:34 PM
 Here's a short timeline of new companies that were organized during the start (1965 to 1970) of the "War Years": Nov. 1965= BC44(2); 7/08/66= E232; 2/23/67= BC18(2); 7/01/67= E85; 7/23/68= L55 & L103(2); August 10, 1968= L56, Div9, and second sections for: E41, E46, E91, E217,  E233, L26, BC12, BC14, BC37, & BC 39. Oct 1, 1968= E225(2); July 26, 1969= BC3(2), BC12(2), BC14(2), BC37(2), BC39(2) are renumbered to  BC25, BC26, BC27, BC28, BC29; Oct. 15, 1969= E46(2) disb. to form E88(2); Oct 18, 1969= BC55, BC56 & Div17; Nov. 15, 1969= TCU512(@E45), TCU513(@E94), TCU712(@E82); Nov. 29, 1969= TCU531 replaces E225(2), TCU731(@L102) & BC57; Dec 27, 1969= BC58; Feb 7, 1970= L27(2); May 30, 1970= E50(2); Oct. 3, 1970= L17(2).     
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on November 16, 2009, 11:14:58 PM
Firehouse memories as a kid buff (visiting dad) in the late 50's early 60's before the "war years":  all red apparatus; bells on all rigs; two or three sets of rolled down rubber boots lined up behind the back step; last names were printed by hand on every boot; black rubber turnout coats without yellow stripes were placed near riding positions; warped leather helmets with red or black solid color front pieces; no plastic vision shields on helmets; older (1940's) 2nd piece engines for hose wagons; engines with World War II whistles instead of sirens; all nozzles/fittings mounted on the outside of rigs; trucks with wooden aeriels; scaling ladders; life nets; deck pipes; wooden extension ladders; open cabs; no seat belts; chief cars (sedans) with single lights on top; open house watch desks with a fan and a filled ash tray; 1st/2nd/3rd due boxes listed on the wall; telegraph alarm bells ringing twice for every box (RTA entered in journals); the box with assignment cards which were pulled every time a "bad box" or an all hands came in; hose drying on wall racks on the apparatus floor; cigar smoke coming from the kitchen; card games like hearts played in the kitchen; fans; dimly lit basements with barber chairs and old pool tables; stacks of musty civil defense provisions to be used as a fallout shelter; mascots; lockers with pictures I wasn't allowed to look at; company matrons (usually widows of members) who made beds and did house work; handball courts; fire alarm box keys carried to rewind boxes; shouts of "engine only", "turnout" or "everyone goes" yelled back to the kitchen; doors left open when companies were on a run; ten pairs of black shoes with laces undone spread around the empty floor.  There were more single company houses.  There were also houses with two engine companies (not TCUs).  I think there was a firehouse in Queens that even had three engine companies and a truck.  A lot changed very quickly in the years that followed.    
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on November 16, 2009, 11:24:44 PM
Firehouse memories as a kid buff (visiting dad) in the late 50's early 60's before the "war years":  all red apparatus; bells on all rigs; two or three sets of rolled down rubber boots lined up behind the back step; last names were printed by hand on every boot; black rubber turnout coats without yellow stripes were placed near riding positions; warped leather helmets with red or black solid color front pieces; no plastic vision shields on helmets; older (1940's) 2nd piece engines for hose wagons; engines with World War II whistles instead of sirens; all nozzles/fittings mounted on the outside of rigs; trucks with wooden aeriels; scaling ladders; life nets; deck pipes; wooden extension ladders; open cabs; no seat belts; chief cars (sedans) with single lights on top; open house watch desks with a fan and a filled ash tray; 1st/2nd/3rd due boxes listed on the wall; telegraph alarm bells ringing twice for every box (RTA entered in journals); the box with assignment cards which were pulled every time a "bad box" or an all hands came in; hose drying on wall racks on the apparatus floor; cigar smoke coming from the kitchen; card games like hearts played in the kitchen; fans; dimly lit basements with barber chairs and old pool tables; stacks of musty civil defense provisions to be used as a fallout shelter; mascots; lockers with pictures I wasn't allowed to look at; company matrons (usually widows of members) who made beds and did house work; handball courts; fire alarm box keys carried to rewind boxes; shouts of "engine only", "turnout" or "everyone goes" yelled back to the kitchen; doors left open when companies were on a run; ten pairs of black shoes with laces undone spread around the empty floor.  There were more single company houses.  There were also houses with two engine companies (not TCUs).  I think there was a firehouse in Queens that even had three engine companies and a truck.  A lot changed very quickly in the years that followed.    
  You just about summed it all up, Mack. That three engine, one truck firehouse was known as the Jamaica "Big House" located on 162nd St. It housed E275, E298, E299, L127 and BC50 and at least one of those engine companies also had a hosewagon. They had an individual housewatch desk for each engine and the truck.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: AuxWarYearsCapt on November 16, 2009, 11:50:26 PM
mack.....you bring back very fond memories of the old days..........dont forget the blue and red ink wells with the old pointed pen, the white blotter used after the entry was made and back then with the bells, on busy nights the dispatchers would not use the zone system. Every signal recieved via the bell system had to be recorded in the co. journal.............The busiest I think was on New Years Eve into New Years day, there were 2 RTA entries per line, it had to be atleast to full journal pages.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on November 17, 2009, 01:04:49 AM
I pulled out one of my dad's 1956 WNYFs.  There is a unit location chart.  It looks like Brooklyn had 43 single engine company houses and 7 single truck houses (50 total) compared with about 24 single houses today.  Manhattan had about 34 single engine houses out of 53 engines and 13 single trucks of 32 listed for a total of 47 single houses.  There are about 17 single company Manhattan houses today, not including chiefs and special units.  This was not an exact count because some of the old WNYF locations are not precise.  But there were about twice as many single company firehouses before the war years arrived compared to today.  I remember the stories from old timers who seemed to really enjoyed serving in single unit houses.  They would claim single house members were closer. Many of those old single company houses were probably built by volunteer companies or by the Brooklyn Fire Department and were small.  They were built for horse pulled apparatus.  I guess since there were so many single houses, there was an ability to expand rapidly when the war years began.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on November 17, 2009, 07:39:44 AM
Guitarman do you have date for E50-2? I think they were formed before E46-2.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 811 on November 17, 2009, 08:09:12 AM
One major reason (there were others) for the fall off after 1978 was the City's change to the Welfare laws that year. Recipients were no longer entitled to reimbursement as a result of fire, nor were they given priority for public housing, among other things. The number of arson and structural fires nose dived. Amazing.

And the insurance industry stopped paying for all the taxpayer jobs and "jewish lightning."
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 17, 2009, 08:49:20 AM
"G-man", "Lonewolf", and "Mack". That is such Great info and memories. I gotta tell ya, "I really do appreciate your posts". it is so "Great" to read all the thoughts you have put on here. This has become a complete history on the War Years. It is a Book in Itself, thanks to all of you.

  I just want to mention, but on another web site called www.ctfire-ems.com , I wrote about "The Fire Service-Past and Present". I was probadly starting it while you guys were writing about the older FDNY days on here. Anyway, some good stories about the Fire Service of the past. I think you'd be amazed at some of the stories that have been written. But they are all the way it used to be. If you do want to check it out, go on that site under "Ct Forums". Also, the "Bridgeports War Years" has been a pretty big hit. A city that certainly saw its share of work in the mid 70s to late 80s. I must say though, lately there has been problems getting onto the site due to some Tech problems.

  But again, back on track. Thank you so much guys for telling the stories. "Us Old Farts", got to let these "Young Kids" know what its really all about. (No offense if you're an "Old Fart" or a "Young Kid"---But you know who you are !!!! )
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on November 17, 2009, 09:13:32 AM
Another oldie: having to shovel ashes out of the coal furnace at Engine 248.  Their quarters were heated by coal up until 1972 when they moved from Church Avenue to Snyder Avenue.  The chauffeur was in charge of the furnace and had to "bank it" before going to bed.  We had to haul metal cans full of ashes up out of the basement using ropes and put them on the sidewalk for pickup by Sanitation.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on November 17, 2009, 11:12:56 AM
here you go matty:

ENGINE 50 (2) BRONX
ORG. 491 E. 166th St. At E-50 (May 30, 1970)
DISB. (Mar. 23, 1974)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on November 17, 2009, 01:10:45 PM
Just did not want to forget E50-2, knew some guys that past through there.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on November 17, 2009, 01:20:48 PM
we missed the 56 Batt,they were the 2nd section of the 18th Batt. ??
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 17, 2009, 03:37:15 PM
Another oldie: having to shovel ashes out of the coal furnace at Engine 248.  Their quarters were heated by coal up until 1972 when they moved from Church Avenue to Snyder Avenue.  The chauffeur was in charge of the furnace and had to "bank it" before going to bed.  We had to haul metal cans full of ashes up out of the basement using ropes and put them on the sidewalk for pickup by Sanitation.

  Thanks John for that Oldie but Goodie. And Thanks "Vbcapt" and "Matty" for including Eng 50-2 and the 56 Batt.(Batt 18-2). Remember those Second Section Helmet Front inserts. I'd sure like to have a few of those. Those, and the Combo Companies Inserts.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on November 17, 2009, 03:55:18 PM
we missed the 56 Batt,they were the 2nd section of the 18th Batt. ??
I know it's hard to read it but look at my timeline carefully and you'll see BC56 on Oct. 18, 1969. ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on November 17, 2009, 04:36:44 PM
Another oldie: having to shovel ashes out of the coal furnace at Engine 248.  Their quarters were heated by coal up until 1972 when they moved from Church Avenue to Snyder Avenue.  The chauffeur was in charge of the furnace and had to "bank it" before going to bed.  We had to haul metal cans full of ashes up out of the basement using ropes and put them on the sidewalk for pickup by Sanitation.

We had a coal furnace when we were kids. Had to do all the things you talk about.  All our friends had oil heat and thermoststs!!!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: efd274 on November 17, 2009, 05:08:24 PM
kfd274 - You have the overview right but as I recall you always seemed to have a knack for getting out of most of the heavy work.  I used to prep the kindling - the private sanitation truck servicing the A&P used to drop the produce crates in front of the house and we would take them in and split them up into small pieces with an axe.  Remember they would put the coal chute in through the cellar window into the coal bin -we would get deliveries from Scranton & Lehigh Coal Co - sometimes Dietz Coal Co.  We weren't allowed to play in the coal bin either for safety reasons and also we would get soot all over our clothes.  I got punished pretty well 50's style when I didn't comply!

I remember banking the fire too.  My first experience with banking was with coal - not with money! 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: AuxWarYearsCapt on November 18, 2009, 01:45:44 AM
johnd248..............I really dont miss the old days of the coal. First was the delievery via the front of quarters into the two seperate chutes, one for the small and one for the large coal bins. While the coal was being dumped down the chute, some fools like me had to be in the coal room to even out the coal as best as possible....When completed you were very very black with the snot dripping which was also black. A good 1 hour heavy shower usually cleaned you out. Then as you stated, starting the fire, banking the fire at around midnight, and hoping it didnt go out after coming back from a long job. Putting the ashes in the cans were the easy part, but now to pick up those old heavy heavy garbage cans filled with ashes..........It was 3/4 time for some..................At 319 we rigged up a lift, tied off the can in the basement and pulled it up with the front bumper of the rig.........Saved alot of stairs and showers, ha ha
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on November 21, 2009, 07:31:50 PM
Good meals and meal interruptions are part of the fire service.  Meals are still interrupted today but are more salvageable with the microwave oven.  It was almost guaranteed that one or two boxes would come in during any evening meal during the war years.  It was not uncommon to leave the cook back if a good meal was being cooked.  My dad instructed me in the different approaches that firefighters used to handle a potential lost meal when a box hit.  Most guys were "gulpers", trying to inhale all remaining meat/potato/vegetable in two final bites.  The "wrappers" covered their plates with paper towels/napkins/plate and shoved them into the refrigerator.  They would later debate who belonged to what plate and try to heat their meals as best they could before the next box hit. The "bring it with you" guys always seemed prepared with two slices of bread next to their dishes.  They could make a meat loaf and mashed potato sandwich in a few seconds and finish it on the back step.  Then their were a few "drop your fork and run" guys who left everything on the table and ran for the rig.  The evening meal was started often started at 8, continued at 10 PM and finished at 2 AM. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 21, 2009, 09:14:50 PM
"Loved the story Mack". How true that was from what I saw. My first visit to Engine 82 was about 3 AM. My buddy and I were invited to join the Brothers for their evening meal of meatloaf, mashed potatoes and green beans. A couple of bites for the Engine guys just before they hit the road for a third alarm. I stayed with the Truck. I guess because I liked to eat. Well, that didn't last long as the Truck went out when the fire went to a Fourth. Didn't see any fat firemen in 82s or 31s. Probadly because they didn't get a chance to eat.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on November 21, 2009, 10:31:50 PM
I wish I had a dollar for every firehouse meal I had which was interrupted by a run and when we got back the fork bent in the cold mashed potatoes.  I agree with Mack's sentiments.  I used to look forward to Friday nights knowing who the cook was.  Freddie Reich made the best shrimp scampi; went on to be a Battalion Chief in SI.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 25, 2009, 09:19:26 PM
Recently, I came across this from a retired War Years Battalion Chief. And "dillion.com" you might be interested in this. The Chief made a very good point. During the War Years there were three Battalion's in about 10 blocks. They were; Batt. 3 w/E94, Batt. 27 w/E82, and Batt. 55 w/E73.
  In addition, a friend of mine sometimes plays golf with a retired member from Engine 94. He told my buddy that when he first got on the job at "94", he was doing 600 runs. When he retired they were doing 6,000 runs. He said they would finish one job and sometimes just look around and see more fires going. It was just which one the dispatchers would send them to.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on November 27, 2009, 08:01:33 PM
NFD2004 - Your comments reminded me of my dad's covering days when he made BC in the early 1970's.  He would frequently reply when I asked him where he worked last night - "a few blocks from where I covered the night before".  There were other areas of the city where battalions were bunched up as your chief said.  I looked at an old map he gave to me (these were the days before Mapquest and Garmen) on which he had every battalion in the city marked.  It looks like Bn 28 (E 271), 60 (E218) and 37 E222) were within walking distance.  Bn 58 appears to be co-located with Bn 44 in the same house (E231) on his map but he crossed it off and moved it to E310, not too far from Bn 41 where he later became assigned.  He would talk about riding as the second section in two section battalions where he would still respond run to run without returning to quarters.  He liked working in Bn 60 because it would move anywhere if there was work and it was busy. I was fortunate to spend many tours with him and saw many great units operate.  He would sometimes not know which units he had when he arrived at job and would use "Bn to 1st due engine" or "Bn to 2nd due truck" when communicating on his handie talkie.  These were also the days of adaptive response, interchange and TCUs so you could get a different set of units and a different chief responding to the same box on different days. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: dillondotcom on November 27, 2009, 08:11:06 PM
Thanks for the story NRFD2004! I have heard many stories from some of the older/retired members.  Leaving a job, just to go to another one, or getting a run at lets say 6 o'clock, and being on the rig going from run to run, or job to job, and not getting back to qtrs until 10 or even later.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 27, 2009, 09:57:15 PM
"dilliondotcom", I'm glad you read about what the guy from E 94 had said. I thought of you right away because you had asked about how busy 94/48 was in those days.
 "mack', how true it is that you would hear on the handie talkie; "Batt to the first due engine" or "Batt to the second due truck'. I remember hearing that all the time. They had no idea of who or what was coming into the job. I guess at times those chiefs were pretty lucky to get anybody to show up. "Mack", I'm sure you're very proud of your father. Those chiefs sure earned their pay in those days, and if you ask me, "they were Top Shelf". There were no command posts, and more than a few times those chiefs had to help with lines or ladders because there just wasn't enough companies.
  One more thing. Every once in a while we hear from the Captain of Eng 82 (*******) 1973/1976. I guess we're all pretty lucky in that case. I recently read about a firefighter that worked for him as a Lt in Engine 50. He stated that because of him (*******) nobody ever wanted to leave that firehouse. He spoke very highly of him. It's not every officer in a dept that can gain the respect and friendship of his fellow workers while still being their boss. That is truly an Honor in itself. Something I hope (******) is very proud of today.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on November 28, 2009, 01:07:52 PM
I admire Captain of Eng 82 (*******) and all the firefighters who served with him 30-40 years ago, not only in NYC but in every city, county and department which faced incredible demands on the fire service.  My dad (a BC back then) always said that "you could earn your full year's pay in one night at one fire."  I saw that and believe it, no matter what town, county or city you worked in.  It is still unbelieveable to remember, however, that many firefighters went to work each night knowing they would get a half dozen working fires, 5-6 false alarms (MFAs), 1-2 motor vehicle accidents or car fires (ADVs) and a few emergencies every night (and these were only 6x9 tours, not 24s).  No FAST or RIT companies, limited use of masks, no bunker gears, lousy commo, no thermal imaging cameras etc.  These guys were all heroes.  But I also have to admire the firefighters in the job today.  I have a son in one of the busiest ladder company in the country.  I serve with a very busy county department.  The fact that fires are significantly down doesn't diminish the fact that they still come, 24 hours a day.  As we all know, most runs these days, however, are medical.  Firefighters must first responders, EMTs or medic as well as firefighter.  There is no margin of error trying to sustain a life with AEDs, bandages and meds at 3AM.  You need to be able to perform lifesaving medical skills as well as get water to a fire, vent and pull people out of burning buildings.  I acknowledge the heroes of yesterday but I fully recognize the "war years" of today and those who answer the call.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on November 28, 2009, 01:29:15 PM
Mack- very well said
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 28, 2009, 05:18:36 PM
"Mack", you tell a very true story. On this thread we talk about the War Years that the FDNY faced and how Historically Busy they were for fires. Believe me, there is No Disputing that at all. And what incredible hard working firefighters they were and just accepting the fact that every day, every night, and almost every hour there was a very serious fire in some of these neighborhoods. For anybody that was around to see this, these guys showed us what real firefighting is all about. They truly are American Heroes.
  But we have Firefighters today facing their own set of War Years. Maybe forty years from now, they will be telling their own War Years Stories. It may not be about the many fires (or maybe it will), but they too are in the streets night after night savings lives and risking their own. Such was the case of a story I recently heard while visiting a few friends at a firehouse in New London, Ct. They responded to a women just down the street from the firehouse being stabbed by her boyfriend. They arrived about the same time the police showed up. The perp was still stabbing the girlfriend and the police had no choice but to shoot this guy. This all happened within a few feet of each other just as everybody showed up. No doubt those firefighters will live with that for the rest of their lives. (the police too). Yes, our Brave Firefighters of today are still out there Saving Lives, fighting fires, and risking their own lives. Maybe they won't be talking about the 5 or 6 fires a night, but I'm sure they'll have a few stories to tell.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 09, 2009, 12:36:13 AM
CD rigs - there were several posts on the CD engines purchased in the early 1950s which served into the War Years.  Here is a picture which shows a CD rig working in the Bronx at PS 9 in the early 1960's:

(http://s1.postimage.org/kezZJ.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=gxkezZJ)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 09, 2009, 12:57:19 AM
Two more CD pictures which are actually pre-war years (1950s).  One shows CD engine used in false alarm reduction campaign.  The other back step picture shows Auxiliaries with Red fiberglass helmets and black rubber turnout coats.  I remember stacks of these old helmets in the basements of firehouses which were fall out shelters in the 1960s.

(http://s3.postimage.org/20lq9S.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=Pq20lq9S)

(http://s3.postimage.org/20lxEi.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=Pq20lxEi)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on December 09, 2009, 01:20:28 AM
Holy cow! Where did you get that photo? That was at the old P.S. 9 school, on Jan. 3, 1963, Box 2148 a 5th Alarmer which I got to see. The CD pumper was Engine 83's wagon, the truck is my all-time favorite rig, Ladder 17's 1953 American LaFrance and the 1960 Ward LaFrance Firebrand pumper on the left is Engine 46 which responded on the 5th but was positioned directly in front of the fire building. An interesting thing about that CD pumper was that 1st due E83 was able to mount an exterior attack by placing two master streams on the fire using the cab roof multiversal on their 1000GPM Mack C and relaying water to the deck gun of their WLF CD49 hosewagon pumper. 1st due L29 used 2 ladderpipes (one on the tip and one under the bed ladder) while L17 used their 35 ft. bed ladder mounted ladderpipe. 2nd due E60 placed their multiversal in a  courtyard on the exposure 2 side. That fire happened on a night when a couple of ladder companies (L14 & L30) were running with "woodstick" spares and could not fight the fire with ladderpipes.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 09, 2009, 02:11:00 AM
Gman - you are amazing.  I think if someone found a story of ancient Rome burning, you would know the first alarm units.  The picture was in UFA's "Fire Lines" (No 1, 2009).  They described the fire  "The morning after, units are still at the scene of a seven-alarm fire that destroyed PS # 9 at Brown Place and East 138th Street in the Bronx on January 3, 1963."  Your memory is unbelieveable.  Thanks for the details.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 09, 2009, 12:46:39 PM
You are right "Mack". That G-man sure knows his stuff. This is not the first time that this guy (G-man) has amazed me with his FDNY knowledge. G-man you should write a book. Don't get me wrong, there's alot of guys out there and on this site that also know their stuff. 
  "Mack" those are some Great pictures too. You made my day by posting them.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 10, 2009, 08:25:41 PM
These are pictures I found of the old Engine 248 and Bn 41 firehouse on 2261 Church Avenue - an old Brooklyn Fire Department quarters.  It was my father's probie company.  There were always white and green cake boxes in the kitchen from Ebinger's bakery.  
  
(http://s4.postimage.org/1PZB4J.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=aV1PZB4J)

(http://s4.postimage.org/1Q620A.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=aV1Q620A)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 10, 2009, 08:30:06 PM
Another old Coney Island firehouse - Engine 244.  It was on W 15th St and is gone now.  Bloomberg disbanded the company in 1968.  I guess it would have been 1st due at Nathan's.

(http://s4.postimage.org/1Q00SS.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=aV1Q00SS)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 10, 2009, 08:36:51 PM
Pictures of old E 245/L 161/Bn 43 firehouse on W 8th St, Coney Island.

(http://s3.postimage.org/2GBbJ.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=Pq2GBbJ)

(http://s2.postimage.org/OWgKi.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=TsOWgKi)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: anesti on December 10, 2009, 08:38:21 PM
Another old Coney Island firehouse - Engine 244.  It was on W 15th St and is gone now.  Bloomberg disbanded the company in 1968.  I guess it would have been 1st due at Nathan's.

(http://s4.postimage.org/1Q00SS.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=aV1Q00SS)


LOL Didnt know bloomberg was mayor of new york city for 41 straight years!!! if that was the case we all wouldnt be on nycfire.net as every single company will have been disbanded leaving us with no fire protection.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 10, 2009, 08:43:03 PM
E 10 with L 15 in their old quarters on 73 Water St before their divorce.  This looks like a picture from the 1930s to 1940s.  Gman would know.

(http://s3.postimage.org/2GQ9A.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=Pq2GQ9A)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 10, 2009, 08:45:45 PM
This was labeled E 52's firehouse.

(http://s2.postimage.org/OXHxr.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=TsOXHxr)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 10, 2009, 08:49:25 PM
Engine 159 on Richmond Rd, in Dongan Hills, Staten Island, before their "new" and current firehouse was built in 1930.

(http://s2.postimage.org/OXWvi.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=TsOXWvi)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 10, 2009, 09:15:49 PM
169 Schofield St, City Island, old quarters of E 70, L 53.

(http://s4.postimage.org/1Q3Kli.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=aV1Q3Kli)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 10, 2009, 09:29:09 PM
Engine 214 old quarters  231 Herkimer St.

(http://s2.postimage.org/O_S4S.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=TsO_S4S)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 10, 2009, 09:34:22 PM
2504 Webster Avenue - home of E 48 until 1977.

(http://s2.postimage.org/P013r.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=TsP013r)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 10, 2009, 09:44:07 PM
2504 Webster Avenue - home of E 48 until 1977.

(http://s2.postimage.org/P013r.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=TsP013r)

After the home of Engine 48, it became the home of Fire Salvage 3. A model cities program to take care of salvage work in residential buildings. When Salvage was closed down, I caught a Second Alarm in this old Webster Ave Firehouse. I heard there was another second alarm shortly after that again in the old fire house.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on December 10, 2009, 10:50:55 PM
The picture of E10/L15's old house. Is the building behind it the old police precinct which is now the NYPD museum at Old Slip & South Street?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on December 10, 2009, 11:15:42 PM
Engine 159 on Richmond Rd, in Dongan Hills, Staten Island, before their "new" and current firehouse was built in 1930.

(http://s2.postimage.org/OXWvi.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=TsOXWvi)

That's Ladder 81 with a City Service (no aerial) Ladder truck. When that house was demolished to build E159's present house L81 moved in with E160. Later on June 25, 1960 seven days after L85 was placed in service down the road they relocated to their present home with E161 on McLean Ave.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on December 10, 2009, 11:22:41 PM
Pictures of old E 245/L 161/Bn 43 firehouse on W 8th St, Coney Island.

(http://s3.postimage.org/2GBbJ.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=Pq2GBbJ)

(http://s2.postimage.org/OWgKi.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=TsOWgKi)

The bottom photo of E245/E326/L161 firehouse at 2929 W. 8th St. also shows E245's old wood frame volunteer house at 2919 W. 8th St. to the left.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on December 10, 2009, 11:28:29 PM
The picture of E10/L15's old house. Is the building behind it the old police precinct which is now the NYPD museum at Old Slip & South Street?
I believe that building behind the firehouse was also the Assay Office where you took valuables to be appraised.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 10, 2009, 11:35:19 PM
Gman - Has to be NYPD Museum.

(http://s4.postimage.org/1Qe6RJ.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=aV1Qe6RJ)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on December 10, 2009, 11:43:52 PM
Gman - Has to be NYPD Museum.

(http://s4.postimage.org/1Qe6RJ.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=aV1Qe6RJ)

Yes it is but it was also the Assay Office and a Police Precinct house before. ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 11, 2009, 12:07:21 AM
Gman - Additional pictures of old Coney Island firehouse next to E 245's old brick quarters.
(http://s3.postimage.org/2XAg0.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=Pq2XAg0)

(http://s2.postimage.org/P8xl9.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=TsP8xl9)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on December 11, 2009, 07:54:17 AM
In regards to E48's old quarters it partially collapsed on the morning of a FDNY medal day not sure of the year.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 11, 2009, 03:40:44 PM
In regards to E48's old quarters it partially collapsed on the morning of a FDNY medal day not sure of the year.

   "Matty", I think I caught the first job at the old 48s/Salvage 3's firehouse. I think the time I caught it, it was in the evening and at that time, it did NOT collapse. In my years of Buffing the jobs, I really have no idea of how many hundreds of fires I actually saw. I can tell you it sure was a lot, going back to the late 60s or so. I think the old firehouse job I caught was maybe in the late 70s or early 80s after the War Years. But this fire I won't forget. It's not everyday that you see lines being stretched into a firehouse. Caught another job that was on the Exposure 2 side of 45/58s quarters on East Tremont Ave. Lines were stretched into that firehouse also, and I believe that fire also went to a second alarm. (48s/Salvage 3s job was also a second alarm when I caught that one).
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on December 11, 2009, 04:44:29 PM
After Salvage 3 left, went to 3 All hands in 48's old quarters. This was before the 2nd alarm which destroyed the building. When Salvage was closed, I don't think anything was removed. There were beds, lockers, hose, coats and boots still in the building and obvious signs of squatters.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on December 11, 2009, 04:49:16 PM
The stone lentil over the apparatus door with ENGINE 48 was saved by the members. It hangs over the door in the parking lot adjacent to the (relatively) new quarters.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 11, 2009, 08:25:51 PM
Came across these the other day. (FD347; has a few old pictures taken from the Brooklyn CO you might like to check out).

                      http://www.flickr.com/photos/timothywildey/collections/72157621922592332/

  "Those were the Days my friends"
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 12, 2009, 09:57:29 AM
Nice pictures nfd2004.

This is a picture and history of L 116 firehouse on Northern Blvd.

http://newtownpentacle.com/2009/07/16/hook-and-ladder-66/
http://newtownpentacle.com/2009/07/31/hook-and-ladder-66-updated/

(http://s2.postimage.org/SSmdr.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=TsSSmdr)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 12, 2009, 10:04:49 AM
A few more E 33 pictures and some history:

http://www.nyc-architecture.com/LES/LES031.htm

http://www.nyc-architecture.com/TYPE/TYPE-Firehouse.htm

(http://s2.postimage.org/SUWlJ.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=TsSUWlJ)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 12, 2009, 10:53:50 AM
Old picture of E 38 L 51 quarters. Firehouse built in 1928.  Can't figure out adjacent building.

(http://s3.postimage.org/70lDS.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=Pq70lDS)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 12, 2009, 11:06:09 AM
Cinquantacinque engine.  http://www.nyc-architecture.com/SOH/SOH064.htm
(http://s3.postimage.org/76pgJ.jpg) (http://www.postimage.org/image.php?v=Pq76pgJ)

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on December 14, 2009, 07:59:31 AM
NFD2004, it collapsed sometime after a couple of major fires in the Building. It was my home away from home until 1977 when they moved down the block. I missed the fires but was there when the rear of the building collapsed.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 14, 2009, 10:38:08 AM
NFD2004, it collapsed sometime after a couple of major fires in the Building. It was my home away from home until 1977 when they moved down the block. I missed the fires but was there when the rear of the building collapsed.

  MMatty, I guess you worked there (Salvage 3) during those years. I remember seeing the rig going down Webster Ave. It certainly was a time to be a buff too. But I really don't remember when they moved "down the block". Where did they relocate to ???
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on December 14, 2009, 12:42:55 PM
I was the buff and Aux. FF there for many years. they moved down the block to Webster ave and 187 st. Not long after they moved in we had 1977 Blackout that night was quite wild.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 19, 2009, 10:29:31 PM
As the War Years were starting to slow down, along came The Blizzard of '78. Basically the Entire northeast closed down for three days. Of course I wasn't down the Bronx or Bed Sty buffing. I went into work for a night shift and spent the next 96 straight hours at the firehouse before I could get home. Of course my wife wasn't too happy when I called her and said I couldn't go home AGAIN. Nine months later the Norwich, Ct Fire Dept had a baby boom.

  The FDNY was still battling a lot of jobs. With all that snow, narrow streets, the high winds and drifts, plus the fires I can only guess what it was like. If you were there on the job, or even as a buff, I'm sure there's a few of us out there (I for one), that would like to hear your story.

 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on December 20, 2009, 10:02:04 AM
I am originally from Boston and I remember the great blizzard of 78. We had a major snowstorm on the previous
friday which was followed by a 5-alarm fire at the Navy Yard. The next Monday was the mother of all storms. The city was officially closed down for a week, no driving was allowed! Between the two storms we had almost 30 inches of snow on the ground. They had to call in the National Gaurd, I remember TV shots of USAF C-130's and 141's bringing in snow removal equipment. My house was at the intersection of 3 streets ala Times Square. The Gaurd made a snow mountain in front of my house, the top was level with the second floor! Buffing was out of the question, many members worked 5 straight days! Stay safe everyone :)














Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 20, 2009, 09:32:35 PM
Thanks for your story "grumpy". I remember how hard Boston had gotten hit (5 days shut down vs 3 days in Ct). I can only guess what it must have been like for the FDNY. A small snowstorm can be a nightmare for New York City. What was it like in that Blizzard.
  In Connecticut cars were abandoned on I-95 blocking all lanes. The snow was up over their rooftops. I had a friend who's back yard abutted the I-95 highway. It was the first time that he told his kids it was okay to go play on I-95. That I-95 became a playground for the kids in the neighborhood for a couple of days. Until the numerous cars were removed and the highway reopened.
  That's just one story from the Blizzard of '78. It was still a busy time for the FDNY with fires. I would guess they held everybody over and manned a lot of reserve rigs. I know sometimes we would have to shovel ourselves before we got to the building entrance. I just wonder how those FDNY guys did it with so much snow and going through some of those narrow streets with double parked cars etc.
  I guess one of the qualifications to be able to tell any stories is of course; "Old enough to remember". Well there's a few, like myself, G-man, JohnnyD, and now I guess you "Grumpy". Thanks "Grumpy", you told a good story. How about G-man and JohnnyD. Lets hear it for those guys. You want to hear their stories don't you. And maybe a few other Seniors out there can join in too. Especially if you were on the job. Maybe you can give us a clue of what it was like out there.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 30, 2009, 01:53:43 AM
Blizzard of 1978 - I was living in a Boston suburb.  The fire department responded in snow mobiles for several days.  They had hose and tools packed.  They were able to follow with an engine to most locations.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 30, 2009, 03:09:25 AM
I was listening to some of the old FDNY radio traffic on Hartford Fire Department radio ( http://hfdradio.com/FDNY.htm ) which is a great site.  One of the runs I remember was a multiple in Coney Island which turned out to be a dispatcher's 4th alarm.  Rescue 2 was assigned - on the 3rd alarm.  There was no Rescue 5 (SI) yet.  I know Rescue 2 was very busy, but it does seem to be very conservative to wait until the 3rd would be transmitted to start a Rescue for a multiple alarm structure fire. This was a 2nd on arrival and the chief requested Rescue 2 on the 2nd because there were so many occupants being removed.

The 8th division in SI did not respond to Brooklyn back then.  Since the 12th Division was unavailable, the covering deputy came from either the 10th or 11th Division, a very, very long run.  It does not make any sense that the 8th Division never left SI back then.  The bridge was up. What was the logic? 

On 10-75's in many parts of the city, there were no 4th engines, no Rescues, no Squads.  And no FAST trucks yet.  I believe the field comms went on all hands - doubtful fires.  I think you had 3 or 4 engines, 2 trucks, 2 BCs and 1 deputy with the field comm (if available) for all hands, another 3 engines and a truck on the 2nd.  The 3rd added 3 more engines, another truck and a BC for communications coordinator.  (I might have missed a unit or two.)  But a 3rd alarm in some parts of the city had maybe 9 or 10 engines, 4 trucks, a Rescue (if available), 3 BCs, a Deputy and a field comm unit.  That seems to be equivalent to a 2nd alarm assignment today.  It is hard to compare.

I remember being told by a chief that in that part of Brooklyn (Coney Island), all hands - doubtful (7-5 signal) transmissions automatically were upgraded to 2nd alarms because it took so long to to get multiple alarm units to respond in.  Was that unique to Coney Island?  It would seem other outlying areas (Far Rockaway, City Island) would be similar. 

There are also examples of units using the 10-30 (working fire) radio code.  This was another thing I do not understand.  Did it ever really work - trying to have the first due units differentiate between a 10-30 fire (2 & 2) or a 10-75 fire (3 & 2 or 4 & 2)? Many times, the engine used a 10-30 and the 1st due truck used the 10-75 (or vice versa). Why wasn't the 10-30  code eliminated years sooner?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 30, 2009, 11:26:29 AM


There are also examples of units using the 10-30 (working fire) radio code.  This was another thing I do not understand.  Did it ever really work - trying to have the first due units differentiate between a 10-30 fire (2 & 2) or a 10-75 fire (3 & 2 or 4 & 2)? Many times, the engine used a 10-30 and the 1st due truck used the 10-75 (or vice versa). Why wasn't the 10-30  code eliminated years sooner?

  Mack, some very interesting points that you have made. I also remember when there was NO Rescue 5. And I would guess that those Brooklyn outfits really didn't want any S.I. companies coming into Their Turf.
  I do also remember the 10-30 signal. Using the 10-30 instead of using a 10-75 saved an extra engine company, somrthing that was at a premium in those days. Three or Four 10-30s going on at the same time saved three or four engines for other work. I can remember going to 10-30s and seeing a mattress being removed from the apts. Or maybe food on the stove that extended a little. As ******* described earlier, sometimes an engine would do 2 or 3 floors of fire themselves. I'm sure as you can relate to, a mattress fire was nothing for the War Years Firefighters. I remember seeing 60/17 operating in the South Bronx for a 5 brick vacant fully involved with no exposures.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on December 30, 2009, 01:58:50 PM
Mack, it is possible that that fire occurred during the time that there was no 8th division. I seem to remember that there was a time when S.I. only had a Monday to Friday Administrative Deputy who did not respond to fires. I don't remember when the 8th was put into service.

Bill, before the 10-75 signal was established the 10-30 signified a working fire. After the establishment of the 10-75 code the 10-30 became a request for '2 & 2' ...

Hope this helps ...
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 30, 2009, 07:13:38 PM

Bill, before the 10-75 signal was established the 10-30 signified a working fire. After the establishment of the 10-75 code the 10-30 became a request for '2 & 2' ...

Hope this helps ...

  Thanks Garrett. As I remember there was a time when BOTH Signals were in effect. The 10-30 and the 10-75. Then alittle while later the FDNY did away with the 10-30. Does it seem like 30 - 35 years ago ?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on December 30, 2009, 10:32:13 PM

Bill, before the 10-75 signal was established the 10-30 signified a working fire. After the establishment of the 10-75 code the 10-30 became a request for '2 & 2' ...

Hope this helps ...

  Thanks Garrett. As I remember there was a time when BOTH Signals were in effect. The 10-30 and the 10-75. Then alittle while later the FDNY did away with the 10-30. Does it seem like 30 - 35 years ago ?

That's true, originally there was 10-30 = 'Working Fire'

Then 10-30 was changed to a request for a 2 & 2 response and 10-75 was implemented which was a request for 3 & 2.

Eventually the 10-30 was eliminated leaving 10-75 as a request for 3 & 2.

Later still the 10-75 became a request for 3, 2, Rescue and Squad.

As far as exactly when these changes took place ... I'm old, my mind won't allow me to remember ... LOL
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on January 01, 2010, 09:59:26 PM
As far as exactly when these changes took place ... I'm old, my mind won't allow me to remember ... LOL
[/quote]

  That's pretty sad when one old timer can't remember. It's even sadder when a second old timer can't remember. We're both too old to remember and everybody else is too young to know. Life really does have it's challenges.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on January 01, 2010, 11:48:36 PM
69 Mets: here's your Division 8/Staten Island Deputy Chief info:

DIVISION 6 STATEN ISLAND
RELOC. 1189 Castleton Ave. At L-104 (Jan. 1, 1906)

DIVISION 7 STATEN ISLAND
REORG. 1189 Castleton Ave. At L-104 (Nov. 1, 1906)

DIVISION 8 STATEN ISLAND
REORG. 1189 Castleton Ave. At L-104 (Nov. 15, 1907)
RELOC. 1850 Clove Rd. At E-160 (Nov. 26, 1930)
NQTRS. 875 Jewett Ave. W/ E-163 (Mar. 12, 1932)
RELOC. 60 Hannah St. At E-154 (Dec. 6, 1939)
RELOC. 1850 Clove Rd. At E-160 (May 14, 1940)
RELOC. 60 Hannah St. At E-154 (Dec. 3, 1941)
RELOC. 1850 Clove Rd. At E-160 ( 1951)
RELOC. 256 Hylan Blvd. At E-152 (Mar. 27, 1974)
DISB. (Nov. 22, 1975)
REORG. 1850 Clove Rd. At E-160 (Jul. 1, 1990)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on January 02, 2010, 10:01:15 AM
"1970 - A New Era in the FDNY...Tactical Control Force" in WNYF (written by Chief of Dept O'Hagan).  Some points from this summary:

Units: TCUs work 37 1/2 hrs; report for duty at 1430 hrs at a firehouse "in an outlying area"; 30 minutes to drive w/assigned apparatus to quarters they will operate from; in service as a conventional engine or truck until 0030 hrs; 30 minutes to drive back to firehouse where their apparatus is stored; work 3 shifts and then 85 hrs off; 5% night differential for all hrs; all members volunteers and interviewed and selected for  their "firefighting experience, attitude, appearance, background and knowledge"; an officer and 7 firefighters in TCU trucks; an officer and 6 firefighters in engines; all engine and ladder companies in adaptive response areas have rosters of 31 firefighters and staffed with "a minimum of 6 firefighters at all times";  increased staffing to match 2 engine and 1 truck adaptive response; all non-firefighting details would be covered from an "administrative quota" of firefighters to maintain minimum unit manning.

Apparatus/Equipment: 180 new pumper contracts; 45 new ladders; 35 new tower ladders; power saws for all trucks and rescues; concrete breakers for rescue companes.

Quarters: Temporary pre-fab steel firehouses; modernization program for kitchens/bathrooms/"sitting rooms".

Administrative:  Administrative firefighter aides to "10 busiest battalions or divisions and the 40 busiest companies"; Xerox machines for firehouse paperwork; new typewriters.

Communications: 3 walkie-talkies for each truck (officer/roofman/above the fire floor); 2 walkie talkies for each engine; new unit status contol and dispatching system development.


Some additional 1970 "What's New" (a later WNYF):  3 new rescue truck contracts (for Rescues 1, 3 and 4); new pumpers to have seating for 7; new trucks seating for 8; Polyox "rapid water" system for pumpers; 2 pumpers w/articulated boom nozzle; satellite fireboat located at E 331.

Note - These 1970 "new era" changes followed 1969 activity where Runs and Workers increased dramatically. These were only leading units:

Engine Runs      Engine Workers     Ladder Runs       Ladder Workers      Squad Runs     Squad Workers      Rescue Runs     Rescue Workers
E94    7477      E290    4487         L31     7806       L31     5886           S3     8445      S4      2308         R2       3483     R2        1423
E73    6876      E82     4163         L48     7643        L120   4592           S4     8277      S3      953           R3**   2858     R3         684
E45    6758      E73     3856         L120    7127       L38     4172           S2*   7918      S2      849              
E290  6655      E45     3805         L27      7070       L42     4041                                                         **Located in Manhattan
E231  6290      E83     3773         L103-1  7032       L123   3946           *S2 operated as E73 during adaptive
E82   6183       E28     3621         L103-2  6752      L103-2 3831            response w/102 additional runs
E60   6081       E283   3458         L123     6624      L108    3604                        
                                              L107     6298        
                                              L17      6166
                                              L19      6157
                                              L38      6104

There were 25 engine companies who had over 4500 runs.
There were 25 ladder companies with over 4300 runs.

                                                      
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on January 02, 2010, 02:34:58 PM
69 Mets: here's your Division 8/Staten Island Deputy Chief info:

DIVISION 6 STATEN ISLAND
RELOC. 1189 Castleton Ave. At L-104 (Jan. 1, 1906)

DIVISION 7 STATEN ISLAND
REORG. 1189 Castleton Ave. At L-104 (Nov. 1, 1906)

DIVISION 8 STATEN ISLAND
REORG. 1189 Castleton Ave. At L-104 (Nov. 15, 1907)
RELOC. 1850 Clove Rd. At E-160 (Nov. 26, 1930)
NQTRS. 875 Jewett Ave. W/ E-163 (Mar. 12, 1932)
RELOC. 60 Hannah St. At E-154 (Dec. 6, 1939)
RELOC. 1850 Clove Rd. At E-160 (May 14, 1940)
RELOC. 60 Hannah St. At E-154 (Dec. 3, 1941)
RELOC. 1850 Clove Rd. At E-160 ( 1951)
RELOC. 256 Hylan Blvd. At E-152 (Mar. 27, 1974)
DISB. (Nov. 22, 1975)
REORG. 1850 Clove Rd. At E-160 (Jul. 1, 1990)

Thanks vbcapt ... It was a long time ago ... I knew the 8th had been disbanded, but when and for how long was blurry ...
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on January 02, 2010, 03:32:34 PM
Thanks also, vbcapt.  I also remember 69 Mets' point about the 8th Division becoming "something else" after being disbanded in 1975.  I think they became a "boro command" for quite a while.  They had a chief and assistant chief located at E160 and I think it was a 9-5/Mon-Fri operation.  The 12th Div was relocated closer to SI (E242) while the 8th was disbanded.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on January 02, 2010, 07:05:11 PM
you're very welcome fellas  ;D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on January 03, 2010, 10:58:51 AM
"1970 - A New Era in the FDNY...Tactical Control Force" in WNYF (written by Chief of Dept O'Hagan).  Some points from this summary:
                                                      
etc, etc, etc.

 Thanks "MACK" for taking the time to type all that out. It is a FDNY War Years History Lesson all in itself. My first WNYF Magazine was a gift given to me by Lt Richard Hamilton (Author of 20,000 Alarms) of Brooklyn's Rescue 2. That was my first real introduction to the FDNY and he gave me the "Third Issue 1968". Since then I've been a steady reader. And every once in awhile I enjoy going through those older issues.

  Last I heard Lt Hamilton is living in Calif and is 86 years old. He does have some major health problems though, but still hasn't lost that sense of humor he has always had. What a GREAT WAR YEARS FIREFIGHTER !!!

  Thanks again "MACK" for that Great WAR YEARS Review.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on January 12, 2010, 05:39:35 PM
  I borrowed some information from another web site that I thought a lot of our readers would be interested in. In 1969, Engine 82 did 9,111 runs. It's partner Ladder Co #31 did 8,597 runs. And we're talking NO EMS or CO Alarms. No company has ever beaten that. And as I've read, alot of the runs were just put on a slip of paper and Never put into the books. So I'm sure there were even more runs than that and what most of those War Year Companies actually listed.
  In addition around that time, Engine 85 was in service and the TCU Ladder Co (712, I think), to help pick up the slack. All running out of 82s quarters. I can still remember my first visit up to the neighborhood. It was right after reading the book "Report from Engine 82". As I remember, Charlotte St was still mostly occupied 5 and 6 Brick MDs. I think there was a school on the corner of Intervale and  Chisholm St. It might have been vacant at the time and that school later burned. I know it was after Ladder 31 recieved the Tower Ladder and no longer had the American LaFrance Tiller. The "Tin House" at Boston and 169 St hadn't been built yet. Later Engine 85 became a Lime Green Engine and TCU 712 became Ladder Co 59 running out of that "Tin House".
  The rearmount ladder companies were just starting to appear also. Ladder 42 or 27 might have been the first I saw. I thought they would NEVER work out for the FDNY. Of course I really didn't want to see those Tillers be a thing of the past. On the contrary, I sure thought those Tower Ladders were the right thing. The first one I saw operate was TL 54 at a job near 82's. 44 also had one. I was sure wrong about the rearmounts.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on January 15, 2010, 08:23:23 PM
The amount of work done by E82 and L31 is absolutely amazing.  I

ncredibly, the squad companies during that period also did a staggering amount of runs.  WNYF lists Sq 4 (15th Div) at 9694 runs for 1970.  Squad 3 (11th Div) had 9278 runs.  Squad 1 (5th Div) responded 7892 times. In 1971, Squad 4 responded 9795 times. Squad 1 had 7841 runs and Squad 3 had 7550 runs.  That's over 19,000 runs for Squad 4 in only 2 years.  The squads were not special operations units back then but operated as manpower units.

Battalion chiefs also did a great amount of running before they created 2nd sections and then new battalions.  On the Bn44 webpage ( http://www.watkinsst.com/battalion-44-history-complete.pdf (http://www.watkinsst.com/battalion-44-history-complete.pdf) ), there is a highlight about the amount of runs the battalion stacked up - over 10, 000 in 1971.  "The Bn44 aide Seymour Schenker reported over the Department Radio, 'The 44th Battalion has just completed its 10,000th run' to which the dispatcher replied 'Congratulations Bn44, now take in number 10, 0001.' "

By the way, Ladder 120 notes that they responded 10,989 times in 1971 on their web site but WNYF lists them as the busiest ladder company that year with 8013 runs.   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on January 15, 2010, 09:09:07 PM
Say whatever you want about the old squads and the number of runs they did; when a fire was out, they never stayed around to help the engine companies pick up hose.  They were more interested in getting into their "pie wagons" and going on another run.  They were not always respected by the real companies, and that's the truth.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on January 15, 2010, 10:02:10 PM
The amount of work done by E82 and L31 is absolutely amazing.  I

ncredibly, the squad companies during that period also did a staggering amount of runs.  WNYF lists Sq 4 (15th Div) at 9694 runs for 1970.  Squad 3 (11th Div) had 9278 runs.  Squad 1 (5th Div) responded 7892 times. In 1971, Squad 4 responded 9795 times. Squad 1 had 7841 runs and Squad 3 had 7550 runs.  That's over 19,000 runs for Squad 4 in only 2 years.  The squads were not special operations units back then but operated as manpower units.

Battalion chiefs also did a great amount of running before they created 2nd sections and then new battalions.  On the Bn44 webpage ( http://www.watkinsst.com/battalion-44-history-complete.pdf (http://www.watkinsst.com/battalion-44-history-complete.pdf) ), there is a highlight about the amount of runs the battalion stacked up - over 10, 000 in 1971.  "The Bn44 aide Seymour Schenker reported over the Department Radio, 'The 44th Battalion has just completed its 10,000th run' to which the dispatcher replied 'Congratulations Bn44, now take in number 10, 0001.' "

By the way, Ladder 120 notes that they responded 10,989 times in 1971 on their web site but WNYF lists them as the busiest ladder company that year with 8013 runs.    

You're correct about the squads Mack ... I remember that Squad 4 at that time was assigned a Mack CF pumper. All of the firefighters at that time regardless of the type of unit they were assigned to did a tremendous amount of structural fire duty. I have a tremendous amount of respect for all of them as I was fortunate to see them in action frequently from 1968 - 1981. I went on the job in 1981 and although I did plenty of fire duty during my career, it could never approach that which those who came before me did ...
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: AuxWarYearsCapt on January 16, 2010, 12:56:40 AM
Just remember the SQUAD 4 ( Bristol Street ) motto..............B.M.A.  ( BROTHERS MY ASS )...............This is what I was told back in the 70's by a firefighter named Benny Zieverko who transferred from SQ.4 to E.319.........Benny RIP...........BMA..............
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on January 16, 2010, 05:26:25 PM
Yes, you are correct.   BMA!   But I don't it was limited to Sq.4   It became pretty widespread about just after the firemen's strike.

It also became the by-word of Disp. Newt Tanner and "Group 1" of the Brooklyn C.O.     
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: R1SmokeEater on January 16, 2010, 08:34:08 PM
Yes, you are correct.   BMA!   But I don't it was limited to Sq.4   It became pretty widespread about just after the firemen's strike.

It also became the by-word of Disp. Newt Tanner and "Group 1" of the Brooklyn C.O.     

Dispatcher54- U on any of the War Years audio I posted ?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1261Truckie on January 17, 2010, 12:21:34 PM
Also, the Tin House (E-232 and L-176) used the "BMA" slogan a lot. I always thought "BMA" originated at the Tin House
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on January 17, 2010, 03:53:54 PM
  
Quote
Dispatcher54- U on any of the War Years audio I posted ?

I didn't take a good listen, but it would be a fluke if you caught me there.  I usually tried to sit as D.D. or Voice Alarm/Bells if I didn't get stuck as A.R.D.  My radio time could be best described as "guest appearances".  In this photo, for example, I assist the radio/out dispatcher (Cheech) improve the audio quality of the transmitted signal.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3304/3407611434_eafdf90f88.jpg)

 :P
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: AuxWarYearsCapt on January 18, 2010, 11:11:50 PM
After 232 was given the royal shaft, we received a arm band with 232 and BMA printed on it. The guy I was speaking about from Sq 4 that transferred to 319 was already out of the job when 232 got the royal shaft, so I have to continue to believe the saying BMA came from Sq 4
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on January 25, 2010, 09:21:41 PM
 
Quote
Dispatcher54- U on any of the War Years audio I posted ?

I didn't take a good listen, but it would be a fluke if you caught me there.  I usually tried to sit as D.D. or Voice Alarm/Bells if I didn't get stuck as A.R.D.  My radio time could be best described as "guest appearances".  In this photo, for example, I assist the radio/out dispatcher (Cheech) improve the audio quality of the transmitted signal.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3304/3407611434_eafdf90f88.jpg)

  Great Picture Guys.

 :P
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on January 26, 2010, 10:12:17 AM
Thats awesome, the days when you were ALLOWED to actually still have fun on the job without fear of discipline. Great pic.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on February 03, 2010, 02:16:10 PM
The War Years were in full swing around 1975. Fires were reaching astonding Historic numbers. Even with the many Second Sections, Tactical Control Units, and Manpower Squad Companies, the FDNY was completely overwhelmed. Things were so busy that fires were put on a priority until a company was freed up to respond. I remember seeing car fires just burn themselves out before anybody was available to respond. When the Engine Co showed up it was just to cool off the hot steel on the car and watch the steam come off. Large brush fires would burn the tall uncut grass in Crotona Park in the Bronx with nobody responding.

  During this time there was talk of money problems for New York City. I remember hearing that the Bronx could not support itself with the amount of taxes collected. By now many entire blocks were nothing but burned out vacant buildings. No rents collected and no taxes paid. There began talk of a serious fiscal crisis looming. As time went on there was talk of 40,000 city employees getting laid off, including 1600 Firefighters.

  On June 26, 1975 it was announced that effective July 1, 1975 that the unthinkable would take place. The city would lay off 1,600 firefighters and close nearly 50 companies just as the number of fires were already overwelming the entire dept. All of the Second Sections would be eliminated. The Tactical Control Units that were needed during the Busiest times for fires would be elimimated. The Squad Companies that were used as extra manning as Engine or Truck Companies would be elimimated. The Special Units such as the Super Pumper and Satilite Units would be manned by their home Engine Company. And several Marine Companies and Engine Cos would also be eliminated. It was the first time I had ever heard of Firefighters being laid off. Even during the Great Depression, that did NOT happen.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on February 09, 2010, 03:47:19 PM
The other day I was going through some of my old papers on what I had written down during my younger buff days. Here is what I had written on it.
  TCU's night differential pay of 5 %. Work three nights with three days off. Shift started at 2:30 PM until 12:30 AM.
  TCU 512 quartered at Eng 90, operated out of Eng 45.  TCU 513 quartered at Eng 96, operated out of Eng 94. TCU 712 quartered at Eng 43, operated out of Lad 31. TCU 531 quartered at Eng 285, operated out of Eng 225. TCU 731 quartered at Eng 288 (now Sqd 288), operated out of Lad 102. TCU 732 quqrtered out of Eng 286, operated out of Eng 277.
   Interchange involved 144 of 366 companies. Second Sections were Eng 50-2, 88-2, 91-2, 217-2, 233-2, Lad 17-2, 26-2, 27-2, 103-2. Also noted in this old piece of paper I wrote out was Eng 46-2 became Eng 88-2.
   Also written down was that the TCUs were disbanded in 1971/1972. I had thought they were disbanded during the fiscial crisis.
   Just some old notes I had written down probadly a few decades ago that I wanted to pass along. I certainly can NOT confirm if my notes are Correct, just that I wrote them years ago.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: BritishAndy on February 13, 2010, 03:07:04 PM
Hi Guys....
I joined this site after literally spending about three hours going through all the outstanding stories on thread, and this is my first post.
I have heard of the `War Years` through reading such classic books as Report From Engine Co.82, The Fire Factory and The Brave by George Pickett, but the view from the buffs is incredible.

We have had nothing near the scale of action seen in NYC here in England, probably since The Blitz. The closest we come is Guy Fawkes night which is similar to your 4th July's.

Like yourselves, we used to go out and buff, by either sitting outside stations (firehouses) with our scanners, or driving around busy areas waiting for action. Sadly, very sadly, the British Fire Service has now adopted a national scheme to change each Fire Brigade's radio system to a digital encrypted airwave system which makes our scanners uselss. Let me tell you guys, it is a big change not having the ability to monitor fire frequencies after doing so for the last 20 years!

Anyway, look forward to chatting to you all over the next few weeks and please, please, keep the buff stories coming, they are fantastic!


Andy
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Petey on February 13, 2010, 04:16:42 PM
Sadly, very sadly, the British Fire Service has now adopted a national scheme to change each Fire Brigade's radio system to a digital encrypted airwave system which makes our scanners uselss. Let me tell you guys, it is a big change not having the ability to monitor fire frequencies after doing so for the last 20 years!

Hi Andy,

Welcome in the world of technical progression. Here in the Netherlands we also have our @#!#@ digital C2000 system. Might be better for us as emergency services. But I know it 'hurts' not being able to listen anymore.

I'm very glad that I discovered live FDNY on Thebravest.com. It nice to listen an check this forum.
Thanks to all who post the rundowns !

Have fun also Andy and stay safe. :)

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on February 13, 2010, 05:13:17 PM
The other day I was going through some of my old papers on what I had written down during my younger buff days. Here is what I had written on it.
  TCU's night differential pay of 5 %. Work three nights with three days off. Shift started at 2:30 PM until 12:30 AM.
  TCU 512 quartered at Eng 90, operated out of Eng 45.  TCU 513 quartered at Eng 96, operated out of Eng 94. TCU 712 quartered at Eng 43, operated out of Lad 31. TCU 531 quartered at Eng 285, operated out of Eng 225. TCU 731 quartered at Eng 288 (now Sqd 288), operated out of Lad 102. TCU 732 quqrtered out of Eng 286, operated out of Eng 277.
   Interchange involved 144 of 366 companies. Second Sections were Eng 50-2, 88-2, 91-2, 217-2, 233-2, Lad 17-2, 26-2, 27-2, 103-2. Also noted in this old piece of paper I wrote out was Eng 46-2 became Eng 88-2.
   Also written down was that the TCUs were disbanded in 1971/1972. I had thought they were disbanded during the fiscial crisis.
   Just some old notes I had written down probadly a few decades ago that I wanted to pass along. I certainly can NOT confirm if my notes are Correct, just that I wrote them years ago.

E41 had a 2nd section
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on February 14, 2010, 08:08:30 AM

[/quote]

E41 had a 2nd section

[/quote]
Thanks "turk132". I had forgotten about Engine 41-2, but I certainly do remember it. That was one real hopping area. I missed that listing on that old paper I found. I had that paper in a book put out by a guy named Marvin Schneider. It was called "The FDNY 70s". Just a paper bound book held together with three staples. On the cover are these headlines, which were from newspaper headlines: "300 Firefighters Chilled Battling 8th-Alarm 30th St Warehouse Fire". "Lowery signs Order to Shut Six Firehouses". "10 Hurt in Fire-Truck Crash". "City in "Fire Crisis" UFOA Warns Mayor".  "Three Firehouses to be Closed for Efficiency". "Residents Hit Plan to Move Engine 31".
  A Great book with lots of information about those Busy, Historic Years. Another Great History book of those Busy Years was written by a guy named; Gus Johnson. Maybe "G-man" or "Johnd248" has a copy, but I'm sure not many out there.
  And "Welcome Aboard British Andy". And "We Thank You for your nice comments". The stories sure are quite a Collection, aren't they !!! And same story here. Some Cities going digital, encrypted. Thankfully NOT the FDNY, and hopefully NEVER.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on February 14, 2010, 12:07:28 PM
yes, I have all three paper books by Marvin Schneider, the other two were on the history of Manhattan and the Other boros.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1261Truckie on February 15, 2010, 12:41:58 PM
There is also a book out there by Ron Bartash titled "Complete Guide to New York City Firehouses and Patches - Brooklyn Edition"

Does anyone know where I can find a copy?

Thanks,

1261truckie
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: chenz62 on February 16, 2010, 03:04:50 PM
I am Vincent E. Polera, FF William F. Polera's younger son.  I am a Sergeant in the Nassau County Police Dept.  I am sad to say that my dad passed in 1987.  He told me some basic details of that rescue and I proudly hold his Brooklyn Citizens Medal and B&W Picture from June 1971 Medal Day at Pace University.  My dad did not like to brag or look for accolades.  He was also a First Sergeant in the Army National Guard.  He was awarded the Medal for Valor , the highest in NYS in regards to that rescue.  While attending college, my dad wrote some memoirs in his English class.  I always told him he should write a book! Brooklyn was burning down when he did his first 5 years in Engine 235, and his last 10 years in Rescue 2.  He got crushed (literally broke his back) in Red Hook Brooklyn after entering a partially collapsed building with FF Hauber (spelling?). After that he got his 3/4 pension, he lived to be 49.  "Leather Lungs was a gem of a fireman and an old school brass balled tough man.  I am proud to have had him as my dad. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on February 16, 2010, 03:09:22 PM
Any Sounds like you should! Sounded like a GREAT man, must of had some amazing stories. I am sorry for your loss. R.I.P FF Polera
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on February 16, 2010, 06:23:22 PM
Chenz62. Your father was a Hero and no doubt one of the Greatest Firefighters to ever live. He fought fires during the busiest of times for the FDNY. I am so sad to hear that he passed away at such an early age. He was part of the "Greatest Generation of Firefighters" to ever live. I might have met him when I rode with Rescue 2 around 1968. I reading the story in WNYF Magazine.

  I believe that your father made that Great rescue of firefighters along with Lt Richard Hamilton then. Recently, I was able to get in touch with Lt Hamilton, who is now 86 years old. He lives in Califorina and wasn't in the best of health, but according to his daughter, "he's as sharp as a tack". Your father and him made that Great rescue together. I'm sure he'd love to hear from you. Also there area few other Great stories written about your father too that you might want to check out.

  I will do my best to pass this onto Lt Hamilton and his daughter. I'll send you an E-mail with more info.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on February 17, 2010, 09:29:32 AM
Ran across some old run cards and noticed MK01 and RH02 and several jobs over the city. What were these units, I couldn't figure it out. Thanks
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on February 17, 2010, 10:53:39 AM
Ran across some old run cards and noticed MK01 and RH02 and several jobs over the city. What were these units, I couldn't figure it out. Thanks

 On the "RH02", this might be "Rehab 2". Years back, maybe in the 80s, before the RAC Units, there were two Rehab units. I believe they were converted from a Rescue and Haz Mat Co. "MK01" is something some of us senior citizens might have to put the old thinking caps on.

  You might see a photo of a Former Rehab Unit on www.emtbravo.net (http://www.emtbravo.net) under "Protection from the Past" FDNY photos. I have several FDNY Apparatus, and various Photos on a disc from years back, but I just don't know how to post them. Send me a "PM" if you might be interested. Maybe "Mikeindabronx" or "vbcapt" who I know has posted photos before.

  Willy "D" (sorry to brag, but considered to be "NFDs HALL of FAMER". Not Newarks, but Norwich, Ct's Hall of Famer)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on February 17, 2010, 11:56:27 AM
I think MK01 used to be or is used to delineate Mask Service Unit 1.

Click on the link provided and scroll to the bottom for a photo of a Rehab apparatus

http://www.fdnytrucks.com/files/html/specialunits/rac.htm (http://www.fdnytrucks.com/files/html/specialunits/rac.htm)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on February 17, 2010, 12:22:52 PM
I think MK01 used to be or is used to delineate Mask Service Unit 1.

Click on the link provided and scroll to the bottom for a photo of a Rehab apparatus

http://www.fdnytrucks.com/files/html/specialunits/rac.htm (http://www.fdnytrucks.com/files/html/specialunits/rac.htm)

  Thanks Deano, that is the Rehab unit I was talking about. And you're probadly right on the "MK01" as Mask Service Unit 1.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on February 17, 2010, 12:43:12 PM
You are very welcome my friend !!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on February 17, 2010, 01:12:10 PM
MS01 is Mask Service, that is why confused on what on MK. I just can't figure it out.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on February 17, 2010, 02:55:11 PM
Ran across some old run cards and noticed MK01 and RH02 and several jobs over the city. What were these units, I couldn't figure it out. Thanks

 On the "RH02", this might be "Rehab 2". Years back, maybe in the 80s, before the RAC Units, there were two Rehab units. I believe they were converted from a Rescue and Haz Mat Co. "MK01" is something some of us senior citizens might have to put the old thinking caps on.

  You might see a photo of a Former Rehab Unit on www.emtbravo.net (http://www.emtbravo.net) under "Protection from the Past" FDNY photos. I have several FDNY Apparatus, and various Photos on a disc from years back, but I just don't know how to post them. Send me a "PM" if you might be interested. Maybe "Mikeindabronx" or "vbcapt" who I know has posted photos before.

  Willy "D" (sorry to brag, but considered to be "NFDs HALL of FAMER". Not Newarks, but Norwich, Ct's Hall of Famer)

To the best of my recollection, the two rehab units were originally Mobile Medical Units 1 and 2 (MMU1 & MMU 2). Prior to EMS merging with F.D.N.Y. a MMU would respond to all 3rd alarms or greater. The MMU would be used by the department medical officer on emergency duty (Car 32 or 33 back then) as an evaluation room prior to sending injured firefighters to the hospital. MMU's were also used to transport injured and ill firefighters to the hospital on occasion. To my knowledge, the job had these two units built specifically to be used as MMU's.

There also was an ALF Rescue back then (R-2) and an ALF Haz Mat. The Haz Mat later became the collapse rig for Rescue 3 for a while and after that it became a spare rescue. The last that I saw of it, it was in service as the Haz Mat unit for Putnam County, N.Y.. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on February 17, 2010, 03:05:20 PM
Actually before Mobile Medical Unit, I think they were called Ambulance #. I remember Ambulance 1 was quartered with E59/L30.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on February 17, 2010, 03:09:31 PM
Actually before Mobile Medical Unit, I think they were called Ambulance #. I remember Ambulance 1 was quartered with E59/L30.

You are correct.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on February 17, 2010, 04:58:59 PM
Thank you ALL for that information. Yes, I do remember those MMU's back in the day. And I do now remember back those two ALF's, Rescue 2 and the Haz Mat Unit. Yes, I do remember one being converted to a Collapse Unit. I think the ALF Haz Mat Unit later became a second piece to Haz Mat 1.?????
 
 Just to add, I think there was also an Ambulance 2, maybe in Brooklyn at one time. That became MMU #2. Two Field Comms also.

 As a buff, I remember those Great Days. For some of us on here, if you were on the job, or just a buff like myself, those 2, 3, or 4 decades seem like yesterday. Bells, pull boxes, with NO cell phones, just pay phones. Even at one point, the Voice Alarms, and ERS Boxes were something new. The First group of new Tower Ladders showed us how much fire could be put out with those Tower Ladder Buckets. Guys rode the back step on the Engines with their 3/4 boots and turnout coats. I remember riding the "NEW" Rescue 2 with it's new automatic transmission. No more shifting the rig through the gears. I'm guessing it was around 1970. No computers in the rigs or in the Communication Offices. Those that were around I'm sure will agree. "Just a Great time to be around".

  Thanks again guys.
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on February 17, 2010, 05:17:39 PM
0406 3-3                E239 E209 E221 E216 L108 MK01 AM02 TS01

Got this from Frank's website. It shows MK01 on the 3-3, which I believe is MSU 1

Yes Bill there was an Ambulance 2. It showed up on the 3-3 above (AM02). I do not remember where it was housed
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: catry on February 17, 2010, 05:51:41 PM
Old abbreviations list at the bottom: http://www.panix.com/clay/scanning/fdny-org.html (http://www.panix.com/clay/scanning/fdny-org.html)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on February 17, 2010, 06:52:24 PM
Uh, OK thank you, must of been a typo on fdnewyork website. Good info
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on February 17, 2010, 07:57:43 PM
I don't believe its a typo. It may have been the abbreviation used in the past as also shown in the link catry provided
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: chenz62 on February 17, 2010, 08:09:50 PM
Jim, I would love to hear your observations of that rescue!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on February 17, 2010, 08:18:56 PM
"chenz62", I hope you got the E-mail I sent you. If NOT please send me a "PM".

  Bill D.,     Norwich, Ct

  
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on February 18, 2010, 01:34:48 AM
Just wondering, is it still worth it to buff July 4th in the busier sections of Brooklyn and Bronx, or hit or miss?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on February 18, 2010, 07:56:08 AM
Just wondering, is it still worth it to buff July 4th in the busier sections of Brooklyn and Bronx, or hit or miss?

"Bigandy", you can read about the Fourth of July fire stories in "History", "Oh those Busy Fourth of July's". "Fd347" who is a Supervising Brooklyn Dispatcher said last year on July 10, 2009 that it was busier, but nothing like it was several years ago. He kinda knows his stuff.

  I will say this though. Maybe some others will agree. I do think in general, the work has certainly picked up recently for the FDNY over the last year or so. Whether it's the economy, whatever, I don't know. That being said, it could be a busier Fourth of July this year. Just my own opinion.

  Maybe Mayor Bloomie will read this, and have all those extra companies manned like they used to, because NFD2004 thinks it might be somewhat busier.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on February 18, 2010, 10:20:09 AM
After Mayor Giullianni made it tough to possess fireworks within the five boroughs, the unusually high level of fire activity on July 4th was drastically reduced and has stayed that way since.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mmattyphoto on February 18, 2010, 10:38:11 AM
I really think that the July 4th Mayhem is over. There will be 4th's that are busy but nothing like the past.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on February 18, 2010, 10:47:04 AM
I really think that the July 4th Mayhem is over. There will be 4th's that are busy but nothing like the past.

Doesn't he work in the Bronx?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on February 18, 2010, 10:48:37 AM
Yeah I figured it was due to Bloomie, cause everytime you go over, under, any bridge in the tri-state areas around that time, even the Deleware Water Gap you see "Strict Enforcement of FireWorks" and such. I was unfortunate, not that building burning down is good or anything, but I was unfortunate to have missed such a great time of firefighting since I'm particulary young. I've never caught a 4th of July, because I was too busy sucking down cold ones at someone's BBQ, but I think this year I'm gonna head over with a few friends of mine to see what we can catch. Thanks a lot guy, and by the way these stories are timeless...and some so incredible it's hard for me to believe, but in New York anything was possible. The stories about no units available just blow my mind, but I could see L111 or L31 pull up to a box and have fire out all windows of a 5 story MD, and no one else in sight, and be told, do the best you can. Jeez. Thank you all.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1261Truckie on February 18, 2010, 02:17:01 PM
Hi chenz62,

I sent to two PM's regarding the rescue. Let me know if you receive them

1261truckie (aka Jim Boyle)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on February 21, 2010, 01:02:28 PM
Back in the day, was it more sought after to be in a busy engine/truck or to be on a rescue? I know there was a lot of competition between engines/trucks and the rescue, especially in brooklyn after Gallagher was there. So what was it like?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on February 21, 2010, 01:44:23 PM
I really think that the July 4th Mayhem is over. There will be 4th's that are busy but nothing like the past.

Doesn't he work in the Bronx?


R-3
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on February 24, 2010, 02:06:56 PM
I remember reading or hearing a story, that stated it was not uncommon to pull up to a job and see a whole entire family outside the apartment on the sidewalk with everything...the clothes, the dog, to the tv. Just goes to show that a building was called in for a false alarm 3-4 times before someone poured gasoline down the stairs. The War Years, nothing will ever compare, from what I'm reading in these 35 pages. Thank you for all your stories.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on March 09, 2010, 08:43:11 PM
More GREAT Photos added from "mikeindabronx". Hope you don't mind I added these Mike. They are GREAT. Now eight pages of the greatest photos during those busy years.

  Go to; www.fdnysbravest.com (http://www.fdnysbravest.com)

  Thanks Mike. They're Great.

  Bill D.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on March 09, 2010, 09:38:45 PM
NO, Thank you Bill
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on March 10, 2010, 10:28:07 AM
Thanks Mike for continuing to post the photos depicting what 'the job' was like in the Bronx and Harlem back in the 70's and 80's. They are excellent and for those of us who were fortunate enough to be a part it, they bring back many memories.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mgk110 on March 28, 2010, 10:38:02 AM
I am new here and I have read every page of this thread. I hope that there are many, many more stories to be posted. What a great time to be a buff, I am very jealous.

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on March 29, 2010, 01:08:18 PM
When I first started buffing the South Bronx, watching those tiller ladders was a Great Thrill. I'd watch those tillermen make those turns and zig zag between the pillars of the overhead subway lines. As I remember then, The Third Ave El was still in operation back then. I'm talking maybe 1970/71.
  I would watch Ladder 31 as they would roll through the streets. Most of the ladders then I remember were ALF Tillers. Just maybe two Tower Ladders in the Bronx. (44 and 54). Then came word that FDNY would be getting Seagrave Rear Mount Ladders. I had never seen a "rearmount ladder" before. After watching these tillers go through the tight narrow streets with double parked cars, I had my doubts that they would be able to work out in this very busy neighborhood.
  As I remember, Engine 46 and Ladder 27 had just got their new quarters at the Cross Bronx and Washington Ave. The area looked quite different than it does now. One look around the neighborhood told you that, this is a "Working Outfit". I think it was then that I saw my first rearmount ladder, and I think it was Ladder 27. It didn't take to long for that ladder to prove it's worth, and prove me wrong. Where there were once ALL Tillers, today in the Bronx, there is only one left. Looking back those many years ago, I never thought that would happen.
  And for those interested, Norwich, Ct purchased the 1970 Seagrave Rearmount used as Ladder Co 109. It was just taken out of service in the Fall of 2009. Thirty nine years of service that started out as the busy Brooklyn Ladder Co 109.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on April 07, 2010, 08:29:45 PM
I thought I'd pass this on which was written by a Retired Chief from the 38 Battalion about the War Years.
  "I feel the War Years started the summer of 66. and were probadly over early to mid 80s. I had a job at Union and Lynch. The Blackout was a week before. The job was in a 4 story factory, and on arrival, the fire was on the first floor loading dock. Came close to giving an 18, but wanted to wait for Eng 216 to get water. The F...ers were using diesel or #2 fuel oil as opposed to gasoline. Within 5 minutes, sent out a 2nd alarm. Fire was on all floors, out about 20 windows, and had extended to exp. 2, occupied 3 story frames".
   "I don't know who dubbed them the War Years, but boy, he sure was on the money".
                                                                                       Quoted from "Kimba"
                                                                                       FDNY Retired Batt Chief
 
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on April 13, 2010, 05:50:34 PM
I sure do miss those days of buffing the War Years. I'd get to see NYCs Bravest fight those fires Every time I was there. Sometimes, somebody will ask me what was the Biggest Fire I ever saw while buffing there. Actually, I guess the Biggest went to only a fifth alarm and that was in a large factory in Williamsburg section of Brooklyn. I even forget what street. But I left from the Bronx to chase it. I remember only two tower ladders operating, and the rest, maybe three, were ladder pipes. It was probadly around 1976. Of course there was that huge Brooklyn job on Knockerbocker Ave, the telephone company, a large warehouse on 30th St in Manhattan, The Big Pine St job in Brooklyn etc, etc. I never caught any of these jobs. Mostly went down the next day to check it out.
  But by far, the most Impressive fires I saw were the fires unfortunately in occupied buildings. That's where these FDNY Members would really show their stuff. Maybe a fire on an upper floor of an occupied MD. On arrival of the first in companies, lines would be stretched, glass flying, the sound of saws opening up those roofs, people being rescued by ladders and fire escapes etc. The black smoke turned to white smoke. Shots of water from the inside line would land on the sidewalk below. And before you knew it, the fire was out. Each one would have been a major fire for most other cities. But for the FDNY, it was just another routine neighborhood fire. No headlines, no news coverage. Maybe the "first", of a few more similiar fires these War Years Firefighters would catch during their shift.
  Today, that same scenario is played out in the streets of N.Y.C. Same tactics, same rescues, just not as often as it was during those Historic Times. But the same quick, aggressive knock down occurs almost on a daily basis.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on April 18, 2010, 04:49:33 PM
Of course there was that huge Brooklyn job on Knickerbocker Ave....

Which leads to a trivia question:  What Brooklyn box is/was known as the "Beer Box", and why?
You already have part of the answer.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on April 18, 2010, 05:38:14 PM
Of course there was that huge Brooklyn job on Knickerbocker Ave....

Which leads to a trivia question:  What Brooklyn box is/was known as the "Beer Box", and why?
You already have part of the answer.

Knickerbocker Avenue & Schaefer Street  (Ruppert Knickerbocker and Schaefer were brands of beer that were brewed in N.Y.C.)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: raybrag on April 18, 2010, 07:19:46 PM
Along with Rheingold & Piels (how many of you remember Miss Rheingold and Bert & Harry Piel?).
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on April 18, 2010, 08:04:19 PM
Quote
Knickerbocker Avenue & Schaefer Street  (Ruppert Knickerbocker and Schaefer were brands of beer that were brewed in N.Y.C.)

Box 813 it is!  Buy that man a cold one!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on April 18, 2010, 08:26:14 PM
Oh boy Piel's !! $3.99 a case at Beverages Unlimited (circa 1982)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on April 18, 2010, 08:34:00 PM
When buffing E241/L109 in the mid-1960's I became the "gopher" and was often  sent to pick up the suds at a local tavern when the deli's were closed.  The bars were charging the premium price of a quarter a can.   That was all before AUC-202, of course.   ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on April 18, 2010, 08:41:06 PM
Was drinking on the job frowned upon back than?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on April 18, 2010, 10:03:08 PM
When buffing E241/L109 in the mid-1960's I became the "gopher" and was often  sent to pick up the suds at a local tavern when the deli's were closed.  The bars were charging the premium price of a quarter a can.   That was all before AUC-202, of course.   ;)

Fire Department Regulations § 25.1.5 provides that “[m]embers in uniform, or when on duty, shall not at any time, indulge in, or be under the influence of intoxicating liquors.” Another regulation, All Unit Circular 202, titled, “Substance Policy: Drug/Alcohol,” dated February 1, 1996 (“AUC 202”), describes in detail FDNY policies, prohibitions, and penalties with respect to the consumption of alcohol by firefighters in uniform or on duty. (AUC 202 § 2.1). FDNY rules and regulations strictly prohibit the “use….or delivery of alcohol while on duty,” as well as the “use or possession of alcohol while in uniform or in any Department quarters” by firefighters who are off duty. (AUC 202 §§ 4.4 and 4.5). All members -- both fire officers and firefighters -- are required to immediately report any violation of these rules to a superior officer. Members who fail to make such a report may be subject to disciplinary action. (AUC 202 § 5.1). Officers have particular responsibilities for enforcing AUC § 202. Specifically, “Officers on duty will be held strictly accountable for compliance by their subordinates with these policies,” and they are subject to discipline if they fail to do so. (AUC 202 § 5.2). For example, if an officer discovers that an on-duty member has consumed alcohol in quarters, he must immediately relieve that member from duty; notify his superior officer; notify the Bureau of Investigations and Trials (BITS); and document this matter in the company journal, (AUC 202 § 5.6.1).
10 Under the NYS Vehicle and Traffic Law, one is in violation of Driving While Impaired when operating a motor
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on April 18, 2010, 11:05:02 PM
1950s Rheingold Beer Ad (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rfc4InJ7shk#)
Schlitz Jingle (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3TcbLk-DebU#)
Old Schaefer Singing Beer Bottle Commercial (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GqZDXCy_RZE#)
Ballantine Beer - classic TV commercial (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NmPWGUQnxgI#)

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on April 19, 2010, 12:15:45 AM
Of course there was that huge Brooklyn job on Knickerbocker Ave....

Which leads to a trivia question:  What Brooklyn box is/was known as the "Beer Box", and why?
You already have part of the answer.
[/quote]
Knickerbocker Avenue & Schaefer Street  (Ruppert Knickerbocker and Schaefer were brands of beer that were brewed in N.Y.C.)
[/quote]

 All those Brooklyn Bushwick fires and never gave it a thought of the Beer Box #813. And some Great memories of those beer commericals as the FDNY War Years were in full swing. (and $3.99 a case-yes how we remember).

  A little off track here, but a few of our Baby Boomer Friends may like this.  www.oldfortyfives.com/DYRT (http://www.oldfortyfives.com/DYRT) htm  "G-man", "JohnnyD", maybe "69Mets", "mikeindabronx", "bklyndisp",. I think we can relate to this

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on April 21, 2010, 07:43:29 AM
Around the Fall of 1977 the city decided to add about 200-300 Fire Marshalls. The city had to do something to deal with the huge arson problem of the War Years. Entire neighborhoods were wiped out. I mean Nothing left. Buildings and people gone. They would be called "The Red Caps", because of their familiar Red Baseball caps they would wear. This was right after they had closed several fire companies also.
   After the Blackout and that huge Brooklyn Boro call in Bushwich which was arson, something had to be done.
   These Fire Marshalls became highly visible in some of the busy arson prone areas. Of course priorities were put on which fires were investigated with occupied buildings having the highest. But they investigated everything they could. They used unmarked cars and wore civilian clothes and were similiar to the NYPD Anti Crime Units. They also had powers of arrest and carried a weapon.
    The Red Cap Program started to work. I remember reading my January, 1978 issue of the Fire Bell Club Newsletter. It was the first time that the fires showed a drop in All Hands and Multiple Alarms. I could also see a slow down in the number of fires during my buffing trips. It was still very busy and continued into the 80s, but the Red Caps had a Huge impact on ending those Very Busy, Historic War Years. In some neighborhoods fires were just an every day occurrance and nothing out of the ordinary. The Red Caps changed that all within a few short months. They were very successful and people knew that if they got caught setting fires, they would be arrested.
  I remember after they caught the young 16 (?) year old that set the huge Brooklyn Fire in Bushwick. All he cared about was getting his picture in the paper. Didn't even think he did anything wrong. The Red Caps changed all that.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on April 21, 2010, 09:41:56 AM
Do you think w/o the red caps the War Years activity would have continued, lets say into the later 80's, early 90's?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on April 21, 2010, 09:07:12 PM
Do you think w/o the red caps the War Years activity would have continued, lets say into the later 80's, early 90's?

  I do think the activity would have continued for many more years. When the South Bronx was pretty well burnt out, places like the West Bronx and the streets above Tremont Ave to Fordham Rd started getting busy. And that's just the Bronx. Before the Red Caps, we used to say that there's enough here for our lifetime of buffing. And during those busy years, there was nothing at all to indicate that the fires would slow down. As the busy years approached the 1975s, 76, 77, it just was getting worse. Just a guess, but I'd say the Busy War Years actually peaked out around 1976/77. By then some areas like 82s had already peaked out. Most of their response area was already burned out. The fires of the Bronx then started to move West and North. In fact, Battalion 27 had been moved from 82s to 79. Ladder 59 was moved from Eng 85 to Eng 43. And this was just the Bronx. The same was going on in some of the other hard hit areas of the city.
   No doubt, the Red Caps actually prevented the city from burning down. I think before that, there were just too many fires and not enough fire marshalls to make any difference at all. Adding those fire marshalls with their high visibility, and word of mouth that arsonist would now be going to jail did make a difference.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on April 25, 2010, 06:19:42 PM
Bill - I remember the Red Cap Program and they were very visible and effective.  Was is a combined FDNY/NYPD program?  Were the teams made up of a cop and a fire marshal?  I seem to remember that there was one program which teamed a fire marshal up with a cop.  That might have been a special program targeting certain areas or even false alarms. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on April 26, 2010, 09:09:36 AM
Bill - I remember the Red Cap Program and they were very visible and effective.  Was is a combined FDNY/NYPD program?  Were the teams made up of a cop and a fire marshal?  I seem to remember that there was one program which teamed a fire marshal up with a cop.  That might have been a special program targeting certain areas or even false alarms. 

  Mack, I think as the War Years were ending, it was the FDNY Fire Marshalls working WITHOUT NYPD that basically ended those very active years. But I do remember a few years later when several people died in an illegal Social Club fire, I think on Jerome Ave in the Bronx. I think it was then, that a Special Task Force was formed of FDNY Fire Marshalls, and NYPD Members to combat those Illegal sites. That was maybe in the early 80s. Mack, maybe that's it. Does anybody remember that fire ???
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on April 26, 2010, 10:50:49 AM
Happy Land was just over 20 years ago in early 1990,  The club was on an upper floor above some stores, with a single staircase going up.

Some retard had argued with his GF, who was a ticket-taker at the door, and came back with a can of gasoline.  The rest is history.  80+ dead.  25-to-life for the arsonist.

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on April 26, 2010, 10:56:12 AM
8/21/88 El Hoyo 6 killed in basement of social club. Jerome Ave and E 175 St. WNYF 2/89 has article on fire and task force created after the fire
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on April 26, 2010, 07:55:47 PM
8/21/88 El Hoyo 6 killed in basement of social club. Jerome Ave and E 175 St. WNYF 2/89 has article on fire and task force created after the fire

  Thanks Garrett. That's the one, The El Hoyo Club is the one I was referring to about the Fire Marshalls and NYPD forming a Task Force in 1988. As I remember it was an Illegal Social Club and as Turk reported, six people died there. That's the job that I was referring to. How about that Mack, does that sound right ? I think thats when that Joint FDNY/NYPD Task Force was formed.

  "bklyndisp54", The Happy Land Social Club, although a terrible loss of life caused by arson, really wasn't the job I was referring too. But for anybody around that time, the Happy Land Social Club fire is one we will never forget. I believe 87 people lost their lives in that small second floor Social club called "Happy Land" on Southern Blvd.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on April 26, 2010, 08:16:57 PM
I have an old VHS tape that has a part about the Happy Land Fire. Very ironically named that. Mayor Dinkins gave a great speech on FDNY Medal Day, regarding that fire.

I'll see if I can post the clip on youtube.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on April 26, 2010, 08:30:15 PM
I have an old VHS tape that has a part about the Happy Land Fire. Very ironically named that. Mayor Dinkins gave a great speech on FDNY Medal Day, regarding that fire.

I'll see if I can post the clip on youtube.

 "Bigandy" sounds like you're referring to the Video called "Brothers in Battle". Another Great One.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on April 26, 2010, 08:39:54 PM
Yep that's it. I was going for "The Bravest" in my head, but that sounded a little too recent. Brother's in Battle is great. Great overview of the entire department (Bronx to Staten Island) , and it was put together professionally which makes it even better.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on April 27, 2010, 11:29:06 PM
An example of great FDNY hospitality & brotherhood: It was around 1990  and I was driving around lower Manhattan with a fellow Virginia firefighter around midnight. We drove past Duane Street and suprisingly saw a firehouse. We turned around and headed over to see this grand old firehouse which was impressive. We noticed the center bay door open which at the the time was occupied by the Battalion. We peeked in and saw a member on housewatch, he saw us and motioned us to come in. After we entered the housewatch booth, he said hello and asked if we needed any help. We said no, we told him we were firefighters from Virginia and I was showing my buddy around and that he had never been to NYC. He invited us to pull up some chairs and stay awhile. We traded stories about each others Dept. and enjoyed some casual conversation for about an hour or so. Soon after, a run came in over the teleprinter.....everybody goes!! After the firefighter quickly acknowledged via the teleprinter he looked at me and said "get in the cab of the Tower Ladder" and told my friend "you get in the Engine". We said, "are you sure that's ok?" He replied, "go ahead, it's alright". I climbed in the cab of Ladder 1 which was a Mack at the time and it had a wide Officer's seat. I was crammed up to and holding the SCBA so the Lieutenant could get in comfortably. We then sped out in route to a automatic fire alarm activation. During all this the chauffeur and Lieutenant operated as they normally would and didn't say a word to me. When we arrived the Lieutenant said "hey man, hand me my tank", I complied quickly. I stayed in the cab observing what I could and I saw the Battalion Chief standing in the street checking things out. At this point I said to myself "oh crap someone's gonna be in trouble when this guy sees me". I avoided eye contact at all costs and then  heard the Chief say "hey ! you look familiar, who are you?" I looked at him and wanted to say the same thing as he looked very familiar. Come to find out his name was BC Quatrone (i think the spelling is right), he was formerly the Captain of Tower Ladder 18 where I used to ride once in awhile, a friend of mine (former Va. Beach member) was a firefighter at Ladder 18. We chatted for a bit and then it was time to leave, we shook hands and he headed back to Duane St. By now I resumed my crammed position, the Lieutenant handed me his tank to put back and we headed back. Once we backed in to the firehouse and got off the rig the Lieutenant said "good night" and went upstairs. When my friend and I hooked back up at the housewatch I looked at him and said "what the hell just happened" we both laughed at each other as he was thinking the same thing, the firefighter on housewatch quietly chuckled. He asked us if we wanted to stay longer but, we felt it was time to go as it was getting around 2 am. We thanked him tremendously and we asked him to pass on our thanks to everyone else in the morning.

You just can't beat that kind of hospitality & brotherhood !!     
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on April 28, 2010, 12:15:05 AM
Deano, how right you are. I can completely relate to similiar stories. Of course since 9/11 things have changed. But from my very first story on here of how two young, somewhat intoxicated guys, just happened to walk in on Engine 82/Ladder 31/Batt 27 so many years ago. We were treated to the evening meal at around 3 AM (they apparently were running all night before that). Then took in a Fourth Alarm riding with the rigs. I just couldn't believe it myself. Before that, the only ride I got on a fire truck was when my father was backing a rig into the firehouse in Bridgeport, Ct. I'd sit up front, and I would get to pull the rope that rang the bell. As a kid I sure loved that. But the real ride came with FDNY Rescue 2 (with the late, and most decorated Firefighter, Lt Hamilton). And the night my buddy and I walked in on Eng 82/Lad 31. Those incidents changed my entire life. I made areas like the South Bronx my second home. And later on I tried to learn as much as I could just from watching those War Years Guys work. For me, this has been one of the Greatest Experiences in my life. I'm very Thankful that I was around to see it.
  And thanks Deano (vbcapt), for that Great Story.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 03, 2010, 08:58:27 PM
From "Mikeindabronx", he would like to give us all an early Christmas Present. He has come out with Page 9 of his Photo Series covering The Bronx and Harlem. To view them go to:
                       http://fdnysbravest.com (http://fdnysbravest.com) .
   Thanks Mike, They're GREAT !
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on May 03, 2010, 09:38:19 PM
More excellent photos from 'the old days'. Great memories and familiar faces. Thanks again Mike!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on May 03, 2010, 09:51:52 PM
The two extremes photo is classic.

Thanks Mike!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: dillondotcom on May 03, 2010, 11:03:32 PM
Excellent!  Shows me what I missed while I was just a boy. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on May 04, 2010, 06:25:49 PM
THANKS
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: ladder197 on May 04, 2010, 09:49:55 PM
When I joined the Navy in 1997 I had to go to MEPS in Brooklyn for processing and my physical. It was a two day process and we all had to stay at the Staten Island Hotel across from E-166/L-86 when the first day was complete, so I ventured across the street to the firehouse, the guys were great and invited me for dinner and to hang out till around 10pm, and gave me a patch and a shirt. So about a week later when it was time to leave for bootcamp I had to return to Brooklyn for final in- processing, which was another two day process and another stay in Staten Island. this time a brought a patchfrom my dept in Jersey and ventured back to the firehouse, once I told the guys that I had joined the Navy and was leaving the next day for boot they invited me in for dinner again. What a great time Iwill never forget it. The Lt. allowed me to ride the engine to the supermarket to pick up the meal, there was a spare seat open and he said if there were any runs I could go with them. They made zupe de pesce( not sure if I spelled it right) and I got to hang out all night, they invited me to stay the night but I had muster in the lobby of the hotel at 4am and thought it best to go back. I still have that RAF patch and its hanging up in my sons room. I will never forget their hospitality and friendship, they really helped to make leaving for bootcamp alot easier! 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 05, 2010, 07:57:02 AM
Thank you Lad197 for your story. On September 11, 2001 America changed, and so did the FDNY. Prior to that, if you happened to stop into one of New York City's firehouses, and you were a buff, or just somebody decent with an interest in the fire service, that story was fairly common. They'd feed you and invite you to ride. I rode several times myself, as I walked into a firehouse where they didn't even know me.
  Sometimes, I really didn't want to stop in because I didn't want to get tied up with one company. If there was a good job, and that company didn't go, I'd be kinda disappointed. And you couldn't just pack up and leave, it just wasn't right.
  But I have nothing but Great memories of my visits to various FDNY Firehouses. Over the years, I was invited to stay and ride with Eng 37/Lad 40, Eng 68/Lad 49, Eng 82/Lad 31, Eng 92/Lad 44, Eng 232/Lad 176 (Tin House), Eng 271/Lad 124, Eng 290/Lad 103, and of course Rescue 2 with the late Lt Richard Hamilton. Those guys were the BEST. They treated me Great. My thanks to all of them. What a Great Group of Guys they were.
   In addition, I stopped into several other firehouses over the years. I've always been treated with respect, and of course they have always had my highest respect. I remember talking to a member of Ladder 33 in the firehouse about what I thought was a very high tech rescue that my brother had faced while working Bridgeport (Ct) Squad 5 (Rescue 5 now). The guy from Ladder 33 just rattled off things to do next time, just as a matter of routine business. I gotta tell ya, they sure know their stuff. Just a routine job for them. I've been involved with the FDNY for two thirds of my life (40 years). I guess you could say; "Just One Lucky Guy".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on May 05, 2010, 11:42:57 AM
Thank you for the update. GREAT PHOTOS. Miss those old Mack's.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 07, 2010, 09:56:44 PM
Many of us would find this hard to believe today, but back in the 70s when the FDNY War Years were really rolling, a lot of depts really didn't want to break windows for ventilation. The FDNY was the exception to that rule. I would buff a fire and the outside vent man would break the windows to the fire apartment and then the heavy fire would blow out. It actually looked like it was getting worse and these guys were loosing it. Of course within 30 seconds or so came the shots of water from inside the apartment. Then the flame was gone, and then came the white colored smoke. All within a few minutes, and the fire was out. If you weren't right on top of this, you didn't see any fire at all.
  I remember going home and telling my father about these tactics, and how quickly these fires were put out. My father was a career firefighter, but just couldn't understand really what I was talking about. In his dept, you just didn't break windows. Even when I went on the job in 1975, it was a "no no" to break windows in a fire. But that's just how it was in those days in most places. We now of course know, the FDNY did it the right way.
  Size ups and Progress reports were the same thing. To hear a building height and size, location of the fire, and exposures was a new concept to us. And I remember how impressed my father was with hearing that on the scanner.
  These were just a few of the first lessons I learned from watching and listening to the FDNY. Over the years, there were many more to come. I remember my father (R.I.P. "Smoke") telling me; "if you want to learn the job, that's the place to be".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on May 07, 2010, 11:05:27 PM
The War Years were "really rolling" in the late 60's. Have people forgotten that or do they just not know?

Howard Cosell's famous statement, "The Bronx is burning", during the World series of 1978, was ten years too late.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: CFDMarshal on May 08, 2010, 05:09:27 PM
The only way I can describe it is a blessing. Gave my step daughter a trip to NYC July 4th, 2001 and thought I would make an offical visit to the FDNY. Headquaters set me up with Ten House, E10, T10 on Liberty St. We were staying at the Embassy Suites nearby. I marched over at 9:00 am on the bright Saturday morning. Introduced to Lieutenant Tom McNamara and the Engine promptly caught a run. Procedure was I had to leave. Engine turned out and I met a member that was off shift. He asked why I missed the run and I explained how I set up the visity. He said hang out for a bit. The engine returned and he spoke with the LT and another box came in and the Lt said get on the rig. We ran 4 calls that Saturday morning and I had to return to the wife and kid. Lt. McNamara asked if I would like to go up in the towers and the wife declined. If my memory is correct it was Lt. McNamara, Tony Koczinski, MPO, Bobby Constant and Johnny Schroeder. We all know what happened two months later! RIP 343, I am indebetted to the courtesy extended to this redneck chief from TN.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 09, 2010, 08:51:53 AM
Thank You "CFDMarshall" for that story. Many of us lost friends and fellow Brothers on that Terrible Day. For me, it's still hard to believe. Most of them I knew from taking classes with the New York Firefighters Burn Center Seminar's. They were the GREATEST... R.I.P. there my friends. You have NOT been forgotten.
  Prior to that day, meeting the Brothers, having a coffee, and riding the rig was usually a part of a visit to a NYC Firehouse. They always treated me with full respect. I am so Thankful for all they did for me. Yes, that's the way it was then.
  And I have to agree with "3511". The War Years did actually start in the late 60s. When I had my first night visit to Rescue 2 back in 1968, they made 18 runs that night. They caught two All Hands, and a Second Alarm. I remember the radio in the rig was non-stop with activity. When it was time for me to leave, I was "Exhausted" from being out there ALL NIGHT. Interestingly, the members apoligized to me as it actually was a pretty quiet Saturday Night for them. They said, they would sometimes do "25" runs on a Saturday Night.
  I am now reading the book called "The Usual". A Great book by Lt John Finucane. He is a retired member who spent time on E18, E231, L120, E85, and E46. He got on the job in 1967 and talks about getting on the job as the War Years started. As a new guy on the job, he talks of fighting many fires with E231/L120 in those Busy Days. (By the way, I do recommend the book).
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on May 09, 2010, 11:55:28 AM
It's great having you on this board NFD. Always something great to say! You are a spring of information and stories.

Thank You Everyone.

Andy
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on May 09, 2010, 12:28:22 PM
When did the "War Years" start?  If you look at the runs reported for units, you can see the spiraling increase which developed during the 1960s. In the 1950s, a few busy companies made 2000 runs a year.  By 1970, there were over 46 companies, not including battalions, which responded to over 5000 runs.  You can see the shift from Harlem units to Brooklyn and the Bronx companies.  Units from all over the city increased their running significantly.  The runs below were just the top 3 or 4 units for each year.  This brief snapshot seems to indicate that a major jump was made between 1963 and 1965:


   1947 RUNS                      1952 RUNS                     1955 RUNS                   1956 RUNS                    1957 RUNS     
E58  1596    L26  1932       E58  2756   L26  2691       E58   2175   L26  2002      E58  2185   L26  2045      E58  2196   L26  2223   
E91  1544    L43  1500       E91  2654   L43  2337       E91   1802   L40  1623      E91  1872   L43  1591      E82  1942   L103 1814
E35  1190    L40  1337       E35  1922   L40  1781       E69   1673   L43  1545      E69  1667   L40  1496      E91  1923   L47   1772
                                                                         BC12  3277                     BC12 3622                     BC12 3967

  1961 RUNS                       1962 RUNS                      1963 RUNS                     1964 RUNS                     1965 RUNS
E58   3024   L26  3214       E283 2980  L120 3410      E283  3627  L120 4112      E283  4952   L120 4970      E231  6170   L120  6077
E283 2701   L120 2888       E82  2733  L103 3349      E231  3157  L103 3816      E231  4935   L103 4316      E283  6148   L103  5550
E82   2648   L103 2627       E58  2708  L26  3208      E82   3051  L26  3500       E82    4612   L26   4013      E290  5551   L31   4253
BC12 4457                       E231 2618  L123 2522      E290  2801  L43  2907      E58    4245   L31   3759      E82    5137   L26   4088
SQ2  3597                       BC44 4206                      BC44 4902                     E290   4155                       E73    4777
SQ4  3362                       SQ4  4056                      SQ4   4838                    BC44   5976                       BC44  7815
                                     SQ2  3738                      SQ2   4311                    BC3    4241                       R3      2570
                                                                                                           SQ4    3651

  1966 RUNS                      1969 RUNS                         1970 RUNS                       1971 RUNS
E82   6234   L120  6476      E94  7477   L31  7806       E290   7151   L120   8791       E82  7876  L120    8013
E73   5730   L103  5824      E73  6876   L48  7643       E231   6983  L103-1 8047       E283 6900 L103-1 7726
E94   5413   L31    4976     E45   6758  L120 7127       E41-1  6898  L103-2 7889      E41-1 6808 L103-2 7704
E283 5279   L123  4677      E290 6655   L27  7070       E232   6704  L123    7650      E231  6731  L123   7201
E290 5114   L48    4563     E231  6290 L103-1 7032     E50-1  6680  L48     6673      E41-2 6692  L48    6879
BC3  6008                        E82   6183 L103-2 6752     E283    6644  L29     6211     E88-1 6634  L31    6864
SQ4  7483                       SQ3  8445                       SQ4      9694                       SQ4   9795
SQ2  7335                       SQ4  8277                       SQ3      9278                       SQ1   7841
R3    3031                       SQ2  7918                       SQ1      7892                        R2     4060
                                     R2    3483                       R2        3859                        M5    1507

Sorry if I might have missed a unit or a number here.  Totals were from WNYF. It is amazing to remember that runs in the 1960s were made in the days of open cabs, telegraph alarm (bells), limited mask usage, no FAST units, few tower ladders, rubber turn out coats, pulled boxes, no CIDS, no thermal imaging equipment etc.
                                                                         
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 09, 2010, 12:45:34 PM
Thanks Andy, but I got to tell you that it wasn't only me that contributed to these Stories. And I was only there about two or three times a month to see what was going on. Guys like "G-man" and "Mikeindabronx" actually lived there, and saw it on a "daily" basis. And as you probadly know, there are also a few guys who have contributed to some stories that were actually members on the job then and were a part of those busy companies. (Capt of E82,******, was one. Now Retired Chief). And some from the FDNY that caught the tail end of the War Years, as we moved into the 80s. Believe me, "those guys paid their dues too".(turk132, 69 Mets, I think, mack, to mention a few) I followed them to plenty of work, "I kid you not".
  And don't forget the great pictures that I believe "vbcapt" posted of the Big Brooklyn Job in Bushwick, or the videos and pictures that "r1smokeater" put on here. I look back at some of those videos, and its hard for me to believe that things were just so bad down there, and I walked those streets. (Charlotte and 170 etc). And of course my real Old friend "Johnd248" with his Brooklyn stories. We been friends since maybe the War Years started. In fact, I think he followed me as we both moved from one part of Connecticut to the other.
  Thanks goes to "Tbendick". I guess without him, NONE of This would be possible.
  So Andy, as much as I love a good "pat on the back", there's plenty more out there that have actually done much more than I have.
  Maybe what we should all do is get all these facts together, and sell the rights to make a Movie. But not Hollywood style, But the way it really was, based on these stories. And then donate the profits to some organizations within the FDNY for making it all possible.
  And Thanks Mack, your figures tell a story in themselves. Thank you for sharing that. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on May 09, 2010, 05:08:35 PM
Thanks Bill, I would like to add 2 names.First is "mmattyphoto", Matty also lived in DaBronx and has been buffing fires forever.He is also an honorary DC and well known to many of the members. "Wayne the Flame" (RIP) also lived in DaBronx and is sort of a legend.He was buffing for longer then I can remember. Wayne also brought the Salvation Army canteen to numerous fires. If I am not mistaken "G-man" knew him quite well.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on May 09, 2010, 08:23:48 PM
Remember the housewatch areas of the 1960s:  A desk, sometimes on a small platform, separated by a few brass rails.  It was usually located immediately to the left or right of the main apparatus door or doors.  There were lists of response boxes on the wall with E, T or C (engine, truck or chief) indications and 1st due boxes noted.  Bells (telegraph alarm) and voice alarm system when later installed.  A chalk board with boxes received marked with times.  You would sometimes see tick marks for guys keeping count of signals received.  There was a department radio.  The journal. A box with running cards (always marked up with changes).  Cards with directions to each box from quarters.  There was a speaker system, light switches.  A small black and white TV.  A fan.  A few ash trays.  A desk light with a bulb that was always bigger than necessary.  Notes and reminders taped on the walls.  A WNYF, old magazines and copies of the Daily News or NY Mirror opened to the sports pages.  A filled trash can. Companies then began enclosing their housewatch areas and built booths with additional comforts.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on May 09, 2010, 08:24:53 PM
All you guys are stand-up guys. Thanks for the wealth of information.  ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on May 09, 2010, 10:52:34 PM
Thanks Bill, I would like to add 2 names.First is "mmattyphoto", Matty also lived in DaBronx and has been buffing fires forever.He is also an honorary DC and well known to many of the members. "Wayne the Flame" (RIP) also lived in DaBronx and is sort of a legend.He was buffing for longer then I can remember. Wayne also brought the Salvation Army canteen to numerous fires. If I am not mistaken "G-man" knew him quite well.
 Yes, Wayne was a couple of years younger than me and got his start with me at E60,L17,BC14. Another buff from that house was Bobby "The Beef" who went onto the Fire Patrol and is now a legendary Bronx CO Dispatcher.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            P.S., the reason we have not heard from Matty recently because he was hospitalized after suffering a stroke last month. The last I heard is that he was at Burke Rehab in White Plains, N.Y.

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on May 17, 2010, 11:33:44 AM
Andy, once again your right!!! LOL. Have to also say "thank you" to all who have posted and made this site what it is, one of the BEST sites, with the greatest members and real life living History of the FDNY. And YES the book the Usual, well recommend.
Stay safe.   Rob
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on May 17, 2010, 02:05:32 PM
And don't forget the old radiator. In the old days the apparatus floor was unheated save for the radiator (or a coal stove before central heating was installed) to keep the man on watch from freezing. E48 has a great picture of theirs in 1910 in their 125th Anniversary book.

The box assignment board was usually color coded, with first due boxes in red. Some houses have resurrected them after years stored in basements. E88 and L38 have theirs mounted as before. The one at L38 is encased in the old oak frame that was made by the brothers back in the 1960's. It still shows them 2d due at Tremont and Webster, Boston Road and Southern Blvd, and Mosholu Parkway and Perry Ave.

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 17, 2010, 08:32:30 PM
Generally buffing the FDNY was a pretty cheap, inexpensive hobby. Get yourself an inexpensive Buff Mobile thats good on gas, a scanner, camera and map, then you're all set to hit the streets. But wouldn't it be great if we could video this with sound. Well, that wish came true, just as the heavy War Years activity was starting to slow down, and the action was now starting to spread more to the West Bronx. Companies like 92/44, 75/33, 68/49, 43/59, 48/56 (Ladder 56 had just moved from Eng 42's qtrs for floor repairs), and Engine 42. As this was happening, a new product started to hit the shelves. A Super 8 Sound Movie Camera, and Projector was a MUST HAVE for me. The camera itself costs about $800.00, probadly more than the Buffmobile was worth. The projector was about another $300.00. Then came the cost of the film. About $6.00 for three minutes, and another $6.00 to get it developed. And this was 1978/79 dollars. My buffing hobby had really gotten expensive, but for me, now I could show these movies to others as they watched with astonishment.
  After splicing these three minute films together, I ended up with about an hour worth of sound movies from the South Bronx, Harlem, and Bushwick. The sounds of breaking glass, handie talkies, saws running, and those companies coming into the job. I ended up putting on programs and fundraisers for some of the smaller depts in my area. I was able to get a few dollars back on my investment. People that had only heard stories about the Busy FDNY WAR YEARS, got to see about one hour of just what was going on in these arson prone areas. The Stars of the program were the FDNY members that came to work and put out fires EVERY SHIFT, sometimes EVERY HOUR. Sadly, I got rid of those films just about five years ago, as the film got old and brittle. What a mistake !!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 19, 2010, 05:20:24 PM
Came across these photos on another site put on by "Mr Negative". As stated earlier Engine 92 and Ladder 44 kind of took over after most of Engine 82 and Ladder 31s first due response area was pretty much destroyed from those thousands of fires. Most of these photos were taken in Engine 92/Ladder 44 area, one of the favorite buff spots of the late 70s and into the 80s.
  So with "Mr Negatives" permission click on this and enjoy the view.
           http://www.flickr.com/photos/dpoole6131/sets/72157616643071198/ (http://www.flickr.com/photos/dpoole6131/sets/72157616643071198/)
  About the only thing I know about "Mr Negative" is that I believe he might be from the Chicago area. Thank you. Great Memories.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Lifeguard238 on May 19, 2010, 06:26:40 PM
The shot with the "flying standpipe" is pretty cool.  I've seen that done with a regular aerial ladder, a stretch from the ladder into an upper floor, but never something like that.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 19, 2010, 06:45:50 PM
The shot with the "flying standpipe" is pretty cool.  I've seen that done with a regular aerial ladder, a stretch from the ladder into an upper floor, but never something like that.
"Lifeguard" they actually did that quite a bit. Alot of these buildings had previous fire damage in them, and rather than try stretching a line up those stairs, it was a lot safer and faster to bring the line up from the bucket of the Tower Ladder. Plus it saved on lengths of hose needed. A good example of just one of those simple things that you learn when buffing these guys.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on May 19, 2010, 07:25:23 PM
Great shot of the young sappling with the senior man. Probably his pop's or something.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on May 19, 2010, 07:32:30 PM
One thing I dislike, even though I shouldn't, about the fire-ground today vs. yesterdays is you can't get as close as you used to. Whether its the cops (only doing their job), or whatever. After looking at Mikeindabronx's photos and other one's on flickr, these guys were practically inside the fire room with the line knocking down fire! Reading all these stories makes my mind wander into that era, and I just wish for once I could've been there. Guys with stories about riding the rigs all night long, catching a 4th there, a all-hands here, and a 2nd alarm over there. You guys are truly the last generation of 'real' buffs. Don't get me wrong, I've been to a lot of fires with my father, dragging hose as a 16 year-old kid, filling bottles, helping guys with their gear etc, in the early 90's. But boy you guys really experienced 1000x that. Lucky dogs.  8)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 19, 2010, 10:07:52 PM
Andy, speaking as a buff of those days, you are right. Very few people ever kept us from getting close up shots of the guys at work. Probadly its just that the cops were just too busy doing other things. I know sometimes you'd have to wait for an ambulance for one hour. The dispatcher would give a one hour ETA for it.
  I don't want to speak for "Mikeindabronx" but I believe he had special permission from the FDNY to ride with those companies and do his photography work.
  And I was with "Anesti" a few weeks ago. He's a buff and on this site pretty regularly. He made a good point. He said: "My generation will probadly be the last group of Buffs around, because it's just not the same". He's about 30 years old, and maybe there's something to that.
  It was just the right time to be around, and of course the FDNY was the busiest. Although as I stated earlier, many cities were also going through their own busy War Years. But to think that there were times when there were no Engine or Ladder Cos available in the Bronx because everybody was busy, car fires would just burn themselves out, sometimes it was a choice of which job to take in, there might be three seperate columns of smoke rising, two rigs would cross intersections going to different calls, rigs would go from one job to another, or they might make five or six runs before getting back to the firehouse. It was just such a busy time.
  It was an education that you just couldn't get from a book. For the guys that fight the fires today; the smoke, heat, and danger is still the same. But for today, "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters", sure is a Tough Act to Follow.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on May 20, 2010, 09:16:33 AM
Things sure were different buffing in the 80's at least when I was a regular. Still seemed to be plenty of work and not any "restrictions" as far as getting in. On occasion you were on the fire floor with the Truck before the Engine had made the stretch. I recall one night heading to a job in the west Bronx (traveling on 95) and a Box came in for a building on Walton and 174. We looked to our left and saw fire out of several windows on the top floor. We exited onto Jerome Ave. and ended up arriving before any companies. The building was on the southwest corner (large "H" Type). We made it up to the fire floor with 44 Truck and I was able to witness some great work. The Engine had a bad hydrant so water was delayed. Fire was starting to burn thru the fire apt. door. The inside team from 44 started to remove doors from apts. down the hall and held it in check by placing them against the origional fire apt door. I remember the Officer telling the can man to conserve the water in case they really needed it !!! Unreal !!! Being able to witness these actions first hand sure was great. Tactics that have probably been done for years. You don't see these in the suburbs!!!   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 20, 2010, 11:25:03 AM
'Bxboro", a good friend and a Great Guy. Yes, he was there. The story is Great. Thank you. That Walton Ave area was really "Hot" in those days. Back then, we were very seldom disappointed even though the "Official War Years" had pretty much ended. Even though the Red Caps were doing an Excellent job in putting a huge dent in the fires of the busy War Years, the FDNY members of those busy companies were still catching it.
  For the buffs then (1980s), instead of catching 6-7 jobs south of the Cross Bronx, it was now 3-4 jobs that probadly extended north to the Fordham Rd area. It was just a matter of increasing the buff area a little more to the West and North for the busy activity. Of course sometimes it was a job in Harlem or Washington Heights. Those busy companies were sharing the workload too. That was just a matter of crossing one of the smaller bridges.
  I don't know if Rescue 3 still has it (maybe Squad 41 too), but they had a decal on the rig. It said basically that they had the "BEST of Both World's-Bronx and Harlem". Although many Bronx and Harlem Companies also fought fires in both areas due to their location. For  many of us buffs then, including "Bxboro" and myself, we also claimed to have the "Best of Both Worlds". Right Mr Bxboro !!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: georged4997 on May 20, 2010, 09:47:48 PM
big blue
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Lifeguard238 on May 20, 2010, 10:01:50 PM
The shot with the "flying standpipe" is pretty cool.  I've seen that done with a regular aerial ladder, a stretch from the ladder into an upper floor, but never something like that.
"Lifeguard" they actually did that quite a bit. Alot of these buildings had previous fire damage in them, and rather than try stretching a line up those stairs, it was a lot safer and faster to bring the line up from the bucket of the Tower Ladder. Plus it saved on lengths of hose needed. A good example of just one of those simple things that you learn when buffing these guys.

Thanks for the information.  Makes sense with what they were dealing with.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bulldog on May 20, 2010, 10:39:45 PM
The shot with the "flying standpipe" is pretty cool.  I've seen that done with a regular aerial ladder, a stretch from the ladder into an upper floor, but never something like that.
I've also seen them take the nozzle off the monitor in the bucket and attach hose to the monitor.  That really saves hose for a stretch to the fourth or fifth floor!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on May 20, 2010, 11:27:25 PM
Genius!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on May 20, 2010, 11:55:41 PM
   Buffing can be very dangerous just like being a reporter embedded in a combat zone can be dangerous. I have witnessed and even had a few close calls while buffing during "War Years". I remember a routine top floor vacant on a winter's Saturday afternoon on Grand Concourse between 144 & 149th Sts. I had just finished knocking out the kinks on the two stretched lines, standing next to the 1st due the engine talking with the MPO when there was an explosion from the front basement entrance of the fire building. The blast was caused by burning embers falling on gasoline that had been poured on the steps that go under the front stoop leading to the basement. What saved me from burns was that I had on a U.S. Navy surplus peacoat and had just turned my back to the building facing the pump panel. Another time in the Summer of '73 I had a bunch of buffs in my new 1973 red Plymouth Gran Fury wagon and we were at Southern Blvd. & 180th heading to a job at Marmion & 179th St. A gang fight was going on and we found ourselves right in the middle of it. The guys closed their windows and as we moved to get out of there I heard a bang on my roof. Somebody had fired a shot and it scraped some paint off of my car. ::) :-X  Talk about the "Wild West" ??? ::) :o ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Lifeguard238 on May 21, 2010, 12:32:23 AM
The shot with the "flying standpipe" is pretty cool.  I've seen that done with a regular aerial ladder, a stretch from the ladder into an upper floor, but never something like that.
I've also seen them take the nozzle off the monitor in the bucket and attach hose to the monitor.  That really saves hose for a stretch to the fourth or fifth floor!

To me that would sound more practical, but sometimes you gotta make it work.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: scamall dubh on May 21, 2010, 07:18:39 AM
'Bxboro", a good friend and a Great Guy. Yes, he was there. The story is Great. Thank you. That Walton Ave area was really "Hot" in those days. Back then, we were very seldom disappointed even though the "Official War Years" had pretty much ended. Even though the Red Caps were doing an Excellent job in putting a huge dent in the fires of the busy War Years, the FDNY members of those busy companies were still catching it.
  For the buffs then (1980s), instead of catching 6-7 jobs south of the Cross Bronx, it was now 3-4 jobs that probadly extended north to the Fordham Rd area. It was just a matter of increasing the buff area a little more to the West and North for the busy activity. Of course sometimes it was a job in Harlem or Washington Heights. Those busy companies were sharing the workload too. That was just a matter of crossing one of the smaller bridges.
  I don't know if Rescue 3 still has it (maybe Squad 41 too), but they had a decal on the rig. It said basically that they had the "BEST of Both World's-Bronx and Harlem". Although many Bronx and Harlem Companies also fought fires in both areas due to their location. For  many of us buffs then, including "Bxboro" and myself, we also claimed to have the "Best of Both Worlds". Right Mr Bxboro !!

Best of both worlds is Squad 41. It is because as a Squad they operate as both an Engine or a Truck .
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 21, 2010, 10:53:54 AM
I've also seen them take the nozzle off the monitor in the bucket and attach hose to the monitor.  That really saves hose for a stretch to the fourth or fifth floor!
  One of the problems with operating the line attached to the bucket though is that once the line is in operation, that ladder or bucket can't be moved if necessary, without first shutting down the line, and disconnecting it. I've actually never seen that done in FDNY. Although I'm sure it has been done at one time or another. I know it's NOT recommended now though for the reason I've stated. Just another point I learned from buffing these guys.
  And I certainly have to agree with G-man about buffing. I can relate to being in the middle of a street fight surrounded by a few NOT so happy campers. One Fourth of July while buffing Brooklyn (Browsville Area), my buddy and I saw a guy hit a motorcyclist and the motorcycle was under the car. The motorcyclist was injuried and the car driver tried to back off and take off. I was about to block him in using my car. Before I could do that, he fled on foot. When the NYPD got there, they found a "small cannon" under the seat of the car. I'm sure he would have used that on us if he had to. I guess you could say, "it was our lucky day". It taught me a good lesson.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 24, 2010, 05:57:49 PM
With a little help from my friend "mikeindabronx", we would like to share with you another Great Video. This video has been "borrowed" from another site, BUT, we think you'll like it.
 It is of the old neighborhood of the South Bronx in the 70s and 80s. Parts of this has been taken from the movie "Wolfen" which was filmed back then. So lets take a look at things the way they were. For some of us, its just a memory. For others, you will get to see how life was back then. And for the Brave Firefighters that fought the fires back then, "We Salute You". One look around will tell just what "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters" faced on a daily basis.
  Click on "South Bronx", then you tube, and watch. (And Thanks goes to Jerry (tpu30z), for posting that on the site).

    http://fdnyrant.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=history (http://fdnyrant.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=history)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on May 24, 2010, 08:40:11 PM
Don't know if these were posted before.  Newark FD:

1950s:
THE LIFE OF A NEWARK FIREMAN.... 1950'S (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vRvmv6gZ43k&feature=related#ws)

1960s:
Life of a NEWARK FIREMAN. 1960's (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rw3kOtHVyb4&feature=related#ws)

1970s:  
NEWARK FIRES 1970's (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_2UlrPGQvU#)

1980s:
NEWARK FIRE 1980'S (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pChbP8C1Npw&feature=fvw#)

Newark FD stills:
NEWARK "OLD SCHOOL" FIREFIGHTING (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bg7Cdl7wlfk&feature=related#ws)

Old Days:
THE LIFE OF A NEWARK FIREMAN (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6rBhtZTphKU&feature=related#)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 24, 2010, 09:30:31 PM
Thanks "mack" for those videos. Newark was another one of those cities that had it's own set of "War Years". I have a friend who's father went on the Newark Fire Dept in 1968. That was a very busy time. My buddies father had just entered the Newark Fire Academy to begin his 30 year career. He attended only a few days of training when all the New Probies had to be taken out of the Academy to go out into the streets, and go to work. Martin Luther King had been shot and killed in Memphis, and Newark was one of many cities that broke out in riots. Fires throughout the city for many days/nights. They went from one fire to another. This class of New Probies, including my friends father, became "Seasoned" Firefighters over night.
  After all was said and done, before the year was out, the Newark Fire Dept made all those "Probies" go back to "Probie School" and learn how to fight fires. Like their Brother's of the FDNY, these Newark Firefighters then went on to fight fires during the 1970s and 1980s. It was the busiest time that the Newark Fire Dept had ever faced. Those guys fought a lot of real tough jobs too. We need to remember what these guys did.
   I thank my friend Josh (AKA Bendy) for passing his father's story on to me. And like many, he has now followed his fathers footsteps as he works a busy Ladder Company in Bridgeport, Ct....... Thanks Josh.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on May 24, 2010, 09:38:56 PM
Thanks nfd.  Newark did a lot of work.  Didn't FDNY also have a least one or two probie classes pulled from the academy and placed into units during the war years? 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 24, 2010, 10:11:15 PM
Thanks nfd.  Newark did a lot of work.  Didn't FDNY also have a least one or two probie classes pulled from the academy and placed into units during the war years? 

 I'm not really too sure, but I would guess they did. Those War Years were just so busy, I'm sure it happened. It might have been during the strike by NYC Sanitation workers. I seem to remember fires all over the place then. Or maybe during the Blackout 1977. Although there were layoffs and company closings a year or two before that. I don't know if there was a Probie Class around that time.
 And the FDNY took their hits too with those riots. I remember seeing Harlem on the news getting hammered. I remember it well. I was in a bar celebrating my reaching legal drinking age. The TV in that bar room came across with "breaking news". Martin Luther King was shot and killed. After that, it didn't take long for the riots to start. At that point, I really wanted to leave the bar and my buddies. I just wanted to go home to catch the action on the crystal (not programmable) scanner. I never told them that, but I guess they know that now.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on May 24, 2010, 10:19:09 PM
  Probies have been sent to major incidents in the past. The U.S.S. Constellation fire at the Brooklyn Navy Yard back in 1960 was one I instance remember reading about. ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: anesti on May 24, 2010, 11:10:21 PM
  Probies have been sent to major incidents in the past. The U.S.S. Constellation fire at the Brooklyn Navy Yard back in 1960 was one I instance remember reading about. ;)

read a story in a fdny book where there was a fire in a telephone company in wither midtown or inwood section of manhattan, i say inwood nfd2004 says midtown  ;D where there was a explosion that killed about a dozen or so people. In the story i forget the probies name, he states the were at the rock having lunch when they saw the bellvue disaster unit responding,as soon as the saw that a chief ordered them on a bus and reserve rigs to respond to the scene.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: fdce54 on May 24, 2010, 11:59:01 PM
Weren't the probies the "Fire Dept" during the brief strike in '73 or '74.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on May 25, 2010, 01:45:55 AM
Fdce you are right about the strike.  In November 1973, crews of probies (who could not strike or they would be fired) and fire officers (who could not perform firefighter duties) responded during the 5 hour strike. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on May 25, 2010, 07:44:37 PM
Philadelphia 1971 (War Years):
Philadelphia Fire Dept. 1971 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wMT2QZ11z7Y&feature=related#)
7 Alarm Fire in Philadelphia July 14, 1971 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X-nJf36w2eY&feature=channel#)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on May 26, 2010, 10:55:23 AM
Thanks Mack,
   Hey nfd, didn't realize that Newark took such a beating also. I have new out look on Newark FD. Thanks for posting your stories and I am sure your friend's father was a DAMN GOOD Firefighter. Would loved to have meet him and hear some of those old stories from a "Genration of Firefighter's" that can never be replaced and left a GREAT past for us newer guys to follow.
  PS -- I also was told from a Buddy that the Wilmington,DE Fire Dept during that time also took a severe beating. To the point that the Natl Guard was needed to guide the fire trucks into certain areas. When MLK was shot and some Police Shooting in the 80's the City burned, but being so small and no real bldg's of importance back then, never made the media. Only about 6 Square Miles and had 80,000 minorities and hard workers mixed in. 3sty brownstones, row homes, just like in Philly. They ONLY 8 Engines/3Ladders/1 Rescue then. NOW down to 6 Engines/2 Ladders/1 Rescue. Lots of talk about shutting DOWN Ladder 2. Guess what, Wilmington Police, hiring more,buying Chargers/SUV's all types of Special Ops Vehicle's(remember only 6 miles)no cuts. But POOR Wilmington Fire, taking the financial toll.
  They did LAY Firefighters OFF for the first time in History, just found out. At least 25 got the pink slips and were not placed in other City Positions. NO COPS. here some info
http://rescueus06.blogspot.com/2009/04/baker-implements-plans-to-layoff.html (http://rescueus06.blogspot.com/2009/04/baker-implements-plans-to-layoff.html)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 26, 2010, 11:29:51 AM
Rob, Thanks for the kind words. Although my father was a firefighter in Bridgeport, Ct not Newark. It is actually my buddy's father that was on the job in Newark. But I did write a little story about my father on this site under "National" posts. Its called "Role Model" and is a true story.
  Yes, those Newark War Years Firefighters took some real beatings. And here, at least in the Northeast, they had plenty of company. Most firefighters in any sizeable city during that time (70s and 80s) went to work in the firehouse with more chance of catching work, than NOT catching work.
  Actually, Rob, both you and "Mack" have given me an idea of starting another thread about stories from the War Years of other cities. Mack posted those videos of Philly and Newark. I spent time buffing the FDNY, but also Providence, RI and Bridgeport, Ct. On another site (www.ctfire-ems.com (http://www.ctfire-ems.com) ) I wrote about the Bridgeport's War Years.
  My Younger Buff Years went way over what I expected. I started just by writing a few stories to a handicapped person. Then I thought how about telling some stories to others. Then the other stories, videos and pictures started coming in and this has become almost an entire history lesson on the FDNY WAR YEARS. So lets start another post about buffing those other cities. There's a lot to tell there too. I'll try to keep this to my FDNY days.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on May 26, 2010, 11:36:15 AM
Sounds Great, GOOD IDEA.
Great Video of ALL of there Apparatus.
Wilmington Apparatus Through the Years (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xuQ5GTE3Gyw&feature=fvw#)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on May 26, 2010, 12:44:22 PM
My dad told me a story about the Newark War Years yesterday. Living in Kearny I live in close proximity to Newark, and basically the only thing separating us is the Passaic River. During the Riots, they National Guard along with the police, shut down every possible way for Newark residents to get into Kearny and Harrison etc. This was done in an effort to keep the riot from spilling over into another district.

Being a fireman in Newark during the riots was the busiest week Newark fireman ever saw of activity. Experiencing over 200 fires in less than a week. My Dad's friend was on the job in Newark, and once the riots were over he said to himself "Screw this. I have a family, and I don't need to be getting shot at doing the job I love." I always thought that was a testament to the unrestful times of that time period. So the following month he packed his bags and was transferred to the Kearny Fire Department. A smaller department, but very busy in those years.  As was every other department that was either a large city or in close proximity to a large one.  Those years were hectic for just about every major city, not just FDNY.  FDNY was just a much larger magnification of the problems faced in the fire service.  However, being that busy, a lot of was learned on fire activity and the dangers of fires in every type of building. Noticing that there were multiple fires everyday in each area, especially for the FDNY.

If you think about it, w/o the War Years, even though it was a terrible time for poverty and economically, there would most likely be lesser understanding of what happens in a fire.  The technology advanced rapidly and the word of mouth increased greatly.  With the introduction of firefighting lore especially Report from Engine Company 82, Firehouse magazine, Fire Engineering etc. people began to associate with each other more and more.  

However these advances helped the fire service greatly, a lot of these things sometimes had negative effects.  Your skin and ears used to be temperature gauges, and now with hoods etc, fireman really don't know how hot it really is. That's just one.

The 'War Years' explored the best, and greatest generation of fireman, not just for their brawn and balls, but for their intelligence too. They took what they learned and ran with it, as evident as to the way we fight fires now.  And for that I don't think there is anything else you can say, but "Thank You" for doing a job not because you wanted the paycheck, but because they wanted to make a difference for the people in the present, and for the future generations. I'd buy them a pint any day of the week.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on May 26, 2010, 04:01:07 PM
Thanks Andy about that Newark Story. Your father was right. Newark was sure burning. And you're also right about buying them a pint. One for every single one of them.

  Andy, the story is Great. And we've started another post on "National" called "The Other War Years". "vbcapt" has already mentioned about Norfolk. I hope to tell a few stories there myself. Of course there's still more to tell about the FDNY too.

  I'm just very greatful to everybody who contributes to these stories. And I'm very Thankful for this site that allows us to do this.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on May 27, 2010, 10:41:18 PM
The shot with the "flying standpipe" is pretty cool.  I've seen that done with a regular aerial ladder, a stretch from the ladder into an upper floor, but never something like that.
"Lifeguard" they actually did that quite a bit. Alot of these buildings had previous fire damage in them, and rather than try stretching a line up those stairs, it was a lot safer and faster to bring the line up from the bucket of the Tower Ladder. Plus it saved on lengths of hose needed. A good example of just one of those simple things that you learn when buffing these guys.

TL-17 bringing a hose line up to an engine co. on the top floor of a vacant building.
(http://fdnysbravest.com/TL17.5.27.10.jpg)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 01, 2010, 09:14:17 PM
I just can't tell you how many nights I sat in my room listening to that Brooklyn. It would be 2 AM or 3 AM and the radio was just non stop. Dispatchers George Munch (I think #247 in those days), and Warren Fuchs (I think #120) were some of my favorites. There were others too, but I had met George and Warren back in those busy days. While most guys my age were out drinking or chasing the ladies, I was just happy chasing fire trucks in New York and my home town of Bridgeport.(see: "The Other War Years" in National).
  In those days there were no MDTs, CAD, or no aids to help those dispatchers. You could here the pull boxes coming in all the time over the radio. In the back ground, everybody was talking. You could tell everybody was busy, just by listening. At one point, during the peak of the War Years, my brother made a 24 hour, reel to reel audio tape for the entire month of, I think August, 1975 or 1976. He made it for a friend of ours, but we really don't know if he has it, or would it still play after all those years. Job after job were on it. Second Sections, I think TCUs, everything we've talked about here.
  I spent most of my FDNY buffing time in the Bronx and Harlem. But turning on that scanner to the Boro of Brooklyn, just had a certain class about it. They were so busy and could just rattle off companies, and addresses without missing a beat. One after another. I'd hear one job, then want to get the progress reports, then another. Then another. I'd have to force myself to get some sleep, because 5 AM came real early to get up and go to work. It just went on and on like that, day after day. There really was no rest. It was just constant running and jobs. While most people were watching Johnny Carson's Tonight Show, I was listening to the Best Fire Dispatchers in the World putting Brooklyn's Bravest to work during those Busy Brooklyn Nights. The fire activity was just non-stop.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on June 05, 2010, 11:18:34 PM
Turning out - late 1960s  (a composite from tours spent with my dad)

It was a routine summer night.  Through the screen door from the kitchen, you could see the new proby listening to the the 2nd alarm progress report, which was now under control.  He was disappointed.  Neither company had responded.  Everyone knew he was anxiously waiting for his first big job to prove himself. Other members displayed no interest in the fire they knew they would not respond to.   Most had had a few jobs and several runs their last tour.  This 6x9 night tour would be no different. There was a card game, Gin Rummy, being played at the kitchen table by the two senior members working the shift.  The other members were watching the Mets on the large, 24 inch, RCA color TV.  Neither the Mets or the Yankees were doing well in those years.  Like NYC in general.  The kitchen went immediately silent as the bells started to ring.  You could see everyone counting, lips were betraying an outward nonchalence.  A kitchen "mute" button seemed to be hit. When the second set of bells on the telegraph alarm indicated this was not a response box, it was back to normal.  The housewatch quickly reassured with an "OK engine, OK truck, OK chief".  This was repeated rapidly, two or three times for different boxes, over the next 15 minutes. The card game and baseball arguements continued in the kitchen.  A few more jokes.  When the next box came in, the engine whip, still playing cards, announced matter-of-factly, "that's a bad box".  A quick story or two about a job on that block, bad building, lack of hydrants.  7 or 8 minutes later, the 7-5 signal bangs in for the bad box.  The kitchen remains silent this time as the housewatch yells for the battalion to turn out as the all-hands chief.  Without emotion, the aide and chief quickly walk down the stairs from the chief's office, get in the plain red station wagon and wait for the member on housewatch to stop traffic for them.  They already had 7 or 8 runs this tour since they relieved the day shift at 4:30. Most were 10-92s, false alarms, but they had a trash fire, food on the stove and an ADV (abandoned derelict vehicle). The chief has his white dress hat on and is reaching for his turnout gear folded on the back seat.  He has the radio to his ear waiting for the next progress report.  The siren from the chief's vehicle becomes harder to hear and then vanishes in the early evening sounds of a busy neighborhood. The senior guys in the kitchen calmly agree that the truck is first due on the second and that the engine goes, too.  The housewatch makes the same announcement holding the assignment card in his hands.  The lieutenants, who were studying upstairs for the upcoming captain test, slide the pole and start a quiet discussion at the houswatch desk around the department radio.  There is talk about best route to take and who else could be responding in at different intersections.  Is the squad responding?  The proby in the kitchen asks a question and immediately gets told he "better not f--- up" as everyone laughs.  The proby silently leaves the kitchen and heads for the housewatch desk.  One of the truckies makes a quick sandwich, wraps it up and sticks it in his pocket.  There a few quick glasses of water gulped. One-by-one, the members watching the baseball game leave the kitchen. A few stop by their turnout gear, one goes to the john, most head to the housewatch desk.  There is a quick cigarette lit. The Gin Rummy game continues at a quicker pace.  The radio is louder now and the deputy's request for another truck is heard.  The truckies walk to their riding positions on different sides of the rig, kick off their shoes, put on their turnout gear and mount their 85 foot all-red tillered apparatus without saying a word. The tillerman signals he is ready.  The housewatch man runs out into the street and waves the truck out of quarters.  They are already heading out the door before the dispatcher taps out the 5 bells and bad box signal announcing the special call.  The proby's early smile is gone and he has a nervous look on his face as the lieutenant talks to him.  Everyone is silent as the chief's aide gives the next progress report.  "Two lines stretched and in operation...Occupants being removed...Heavy fire condition...Exposures... Checking extension to cockloft...Doubtful will hold."  Another two minutes go by.  Members are silent, faces are confident.  This is a good crew.  It's like watching a baseball team before they take the field to start a game.  The division aide is now back on the radio and out of breath.  The senior member is already walking over to the driver's position.  He could tell by the new excitement in the aides' voice.  "The fire has extended into the cockloft - transmit the second."  Members put on their black and yellow-striped rubber turnout coats and leather helmets. Shoes are kicked off.  Everyone slides into their boots.  The red Mack's engine cranks and spits out exhaust across the apparatus floor.  Two guys are already out in the street to stop traffic.  The officer hits the air horn as the engine rolls into the street and stops for members to mount the back step.  The doors are closed by the proby and he mounts the rear step as the member next to him says "first real job, don't f---up kid."  Air horn and siren slowly become silent as the engine responds into the summer night.  The cards were left on the kitchen table with two coffee cups, Ralph Kiner was summarizing how the Mets lost on the big 24 inch RCA color TV, the engine's exhaust fumes lingered across the apparatus floor, 10 pairs of shoes and a few drip pans remained where the rigs were located only a few minutes ago.  And I listened to the department radio at the housewatch desk and waited for my dad to return.  It was a routine summer night.       
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 06, 2010, 08:46:43 AM
Thanks Mack, you got a Great story there. The rubber coats with the yellow stripes, the bells ringing in the firehouse, and the red station wagon Battalion Cars etc, etc. As you describe it, I could picture being in the firehouse myself.
  Progress is Great. MDTs, Bunker Gear, Air Conditioned Rigs, But don't you just wish we could "Bottle Up Those Days" and save them.
  On a side note and somewhat off track here, Mack and I had a lot in common. Hope you don't mind Mack. We both didn't do too good in Catholic Grammer School, but we loved going to the firehouse to see our dads. But, our dads sure didn't love going to see the nuns about how we were doing in school those days. One night when my father was called in because I wasn't doing too well, the nun asked me: "William, what do you want to do when you grow up" ? I said: "Be A FIREMAN" !!! It wasn't really what they wanted to hear.  They always wanted you to be a priest, doctor, or a lawyer. I remember my father wanted to hide when I responded with that. When Mack's father and my father were on the job, it was really low pay and long hours. When my father (I called him "Smoke") started, he worked 7 days, then 7 nights, then 2 days off. (96 hrs). For me, growing up kinda poor with my two brothers and sister wasn't so bad. As long as I got to visit my father at the firehouse.
  Thanks again Mack for all your Great Posts.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on June 06, 2010, 10:23:46 PM
One night when my father was called in because I wasn't doing too well, the nun asked me: "William, what do you want to do when you grow up" ? I said: "Be A FIREMAN" !!! It wasn't really what they wanted to hear.  They always wanted you to be a priest, doctor, or a lawyer. I remember my father wanted to hide when I responded with that.

nfd - was thinking ....... if you were a priest you could have been a fire chaplain;  a doctor - you could have worked at the FD Medical Division; a lawyer - you could have been working at headquarters, and like one of the FDNY lawyers - become a Deputy Commissioner.  The nun knew!!!!! :) :D ::)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 14, 2010, 12:29:22 PM
When I would go buffing the Bronx (or Brooklyn), I usually got into the boro around 11:00 AM or so. In July and August, the streets were already steaming hot. Fire hydrants would be running on every block. Water was flowing down the streets like rapid rivers. As you'd ride down some of those streets, it wasn't uncommon to get your car soaked and all the windows had to be rolled up. The kids would take tin cans and open both ends. Then they aimed the water flow to your car. Or they would take a tire and a piece of wood to make your car a target for that heavy water flow. The younger kids would be jumping up and down on several old mattresses in those rubble strewn abondonded lots. The scene of previous building fires.
  As the day went on it got hotter. Groups of teenagers would gather on street corners. An Engine company would be dispatched to that corner for a street pull box. Of course there was no fire and nobody saw anything. We'd hear the 10-92 (false alarm) given for the box number. Within a few minutes or so we'd hear Bronx to Engine ###, respond to Box ####. The same box that had just been pulled earlier. The stage was being set for bigger and better things. Maybe next time would be an abondonded car fire, or a large pile of rubbish. But everybody seemed to know what was coming. The FDNY War Year Members, The Buffs, even the local people in the neighborhood knew, before the night was over, there'd be a big job. Sure enough, after four or five false alarms from the same box, maybe one or two fires to kind of "wet their whistle" in that block, the big job would hit. Nobody saw anything during the entire night, yet the FDNY had responded to the street 6 or 8 times earlier. And there'd be two or three floors of fire as the members arrived for the Grand Finale. Maybe the same thing would start all over again the next night.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: patrickfd on June 14, 2010, 05:06:27 PM
I remember the kids playing with the hydrants and aiming for your car when you drove past. How about all the kids climbing on the rigs when the members were working at a job. NO WAY would they be allowed to do that today.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 14, 2010, 05:07:56 PM
nfd - was thinking ....... if you were a priest you could have been a fire chaplain;  a doctor - you could have worked at the FD Medical Division; a lawyer - you could have been working at headquarters, and like one of the FDNY lawyers - become a Deputy Commissioner.  The nun knew!!!!! :) :D ::)
[/quote]

  "kfd274", yeah, after a week or so I've been thinking about that myself. Besides, it sure would have sounded good. "Father Willy "D", or "Doctor Willy "D", or better yet, "Attorney Willy "D". Those nuns might have been Old and Nasty but I guess they sure knew what was best for us. But here's the thing that they just didn't understand. If I had listened to them, I wouldn't have gotten to ride Squad "A" through the downtown streets of Norwich (CT). I'm sure a rich guy like Bill Gates wishes he could have done that too.
  So I guess life really wasn't so bad. Got to ride Squad "A" for a few years. Saw the FDNY and a few other cities during their busiest, most historic time for fires. And then got to tell about it on a GREAT WEB SITE, like this. And Thanks to all those that contributed, and to those that just listened. But the real credit goes to those War Years Firefighters and Dispatchers, who did the almost impossible job every single day for those so many years. For some an entire career.
   Bill Dennis (AKA Willy "D")
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on June 16, 2010, 09:03:25 AM
My first trip buffing Brooklyn was in 1980. Yea....I know it wasn't the war years but I sure did enjoy the "Boro of Fire". Got into Brooklyn around 10 pm after spending the day in the Bronx as we usually did. Bklyn was new to me and I was excited to explore new grounds. Absolutely loved the Bklyn Dispatchers.....never more than a minute or two of radio silence.......very active. Although there were several jobs that night, we caught nothing. We took the advice of our friend "Nfd" and tried to stay in a certain area. If you headed out to all jobs that were transmitted, you would just be dissappointed. As soon as you left an area, there would be a job within a block of where you just spent hours waiting. My first job came in around 6:30 am on a hot August morning. It was already in the 80's and very humid. The city never did cool off much that night !! It was a 4 story building on the sw corner or Rockaway Ave. and Hull St. E-232 was first due and there was fire throughout. Store on the first floor and vacant upstairs. E-233, L120, L176 the 44 and another Engine and Chief were also there. Thinking back, the amount of fire and the few units assigned seemed odd to me then. The fellas went about there business and that was that. That fire today would at least have been a 2nd or maybe a third. Dozens of units, Chiefs, PD, etc......There wasn't a single person on the street watching that morning and I remember thinking to myself how this must be an everyday thing in the neighborhood. One look around would have seen that. Back to the dispatchers........took me a while to figure out who the BUG man was and my favorite was the Chief asking for a 10-7 and the Dispatcher replied "Chief...thats Apt 4c.....as in breadcrumbs"....CLASSIC !!!!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 16, 2010, 09:39:44 AM
Great story Scott (Bxboro) and thanks for sharing it. Don't you wish we could do it all over again. And you're right, the 80s still had plenty of action. I think the first year that the Fire Marshall "Red Caps" went into place was the Fall of 1978 (?). FDNY had hit 100 Multiple Alarms for a month or so before that (the actual War Years). When the Red Caps started hitting the streets, the multiples dropped to 50-60 per month. Yes, the War Years were coming to an end. But as "Bxboro" explains, an All Hands in the 80s would be a Second or Third today.
  Point is, even though the multiple alarms were almost cut in half, there were some pretty big ALL Hands jobs in those 1980s. So if you missed out on the Busy Historic War Years, but was around for those 1980s, there was still plenty of activity around. It's just that some neighborhoods were already wiped out. And that in itself, was something to see. Riding through completely burned out neighborhoods with nobody left, except a few pigeons living in those burned out shells. Hard to believe this sight was just a few miles from the "Heartbeat of the World". The Cosmopolitan of Midtown Manhattan. Two different worlds apart. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on June 16, 2010, 09:55:22 AM
After several trips to Bklyn.....one day we were at a job and got to talking to the fellas from 231/120 and were invited back for coffee. After the job we headed to Watkins St. to say hello and that was the start of many of nights riding with the 44. These Co's were at the top of there game as were the rest of the neighboring Co's. That neighborhood was still going to fires daily and never did I not go to a job when riding....it was great. The 44 Aide "Ratso" was something else!! One evening we were at 283's for a Division meeting. Hanging around the watchdesk, Ratso was telling us stories after stories. A Box came in for a job on Stone Ave. (Mother Gaston Blvd.) and the dispatcher (Fuchs) asked the units for a 10-12 because of the delayed time for the Chief. Without any delay, Ratso picked up the phone and promptly advised the Dispatcher that the reported address was in fact a vacant lot......enough said !!! 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 17, 2010, 09:37:49 PM
Through out this series we discussed several extra companies. Some were called Second Sections, others TCUs (Tactical Control Units), and those Squad Companies of the War Years. There were also Battalions that operated during those busy years. The Bronx had Battalion 55 with Engine 73/Ladder 42, and Battalion 56 with Engine 46/Ladder 27.
  There was also a "roving" Battalion in Brooklyn called Battalion 60. I do also remember a Battalion 59 that I think operated in Brooklyn also.
  I'd like to thank a few of "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters" for refreshing my memory on another site. Including the retired member who was the Captain of Engine 82 during those very hectic times.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on June 17, 2010, 10:22:37 PM
There were several battalion 2nd sections operating in the late 60s.  I know the 44 had a 2nd section which I think became Bn 58.  There was also 2nd sections for Bn 3, 12, 39.  They disbanded in the 70s and created new battalions with them.  Most of the "real busy" (all battalions were "busy") new battalions had only 2 firehouses - 4 companies.  And they still went from box to box.  It was not unusual to hear the dispatcher asking for "any available battalion in the boro of --------- for a working fire?"

They also formed the 17th Division in Brooklyn about the same time they formed the new battalions.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on June 17, 2010, 11:21:03 PM
There were several battalion 2nd sections operating in the late 60s.  I know the 44 had a 2nd section which I think became Bn 58.  There was also 2nd sections for Bn 3, 12, 39.  They disbanded in the 70s and created new battalions with them.  Most of the "real busy" (all battalions were "busy") new battalions had only 2 firehouses - 4 companies.  And they still went from box to box.  It was not unusual to hear the dispatcher asking for "any available battalion in the boro of --------- for a working fire?"

They also formed the 17th Division in Brooklyn about the same time they formed the new battalions.
Also the 2nd section at Batt. 14 which became BC26. BC12/BC25, BC3/BC27, and I believe BC37/BC28 and BC34/BC57
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 18, 2010, 07:55:55 AM
Thank you very much "mack" and "G-man". I surely appreciate that info. And yes, I do remember the 17th Division in Brooklyn. Let me just list them in order and maybe easier to follow. I know my brother "georged4997" (Bridgeport retired War Years Chief), might have a little bit of trouble following this if I don't.
       Battalion 3,-2 (Second Section)...became Battalion 27
       Battalion 12 - 2.........................became Battalion 25
       Battalion 14 - 2.........................became Battalion 26
       Battalion 34 - 2.........................became Battalion 57
       Battalion 37 - 2.........................became Battalion 28
       Battalion 44 - 2.........................became Battalion 58
  And then there was also Battalion 60 which was a "Rovering Chief" in Brooklyn, who may have only been in service during certain peak hours, similiar to the TCUs. And then also there was Battalion 59. Somebody said that Battalion 59 covered fulltime, parts of Brooklyn and Queens. What is now the 28 and 46 area. But I'm not sure on that one.
  Thanks again to "mack" and "G-man" for supplying that info.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on June 18, 2010, 01:32:23 PM
BN*60 was on duty 24/7..... in the evenings from 1800 to 0100 they rotated as the first section of certain BKLYN Bns they hit each one every third night .......1 night in BN*35.....1 night in BN*44 & i dont remember the third night ...may have been BN*37.......from 0100 till 1800 the next night they were in the qtrs of ENG*218 at 650 Hart St bet Myrtle & Central in Bushwick & responded at the direction of the Dispatcher to wherever neccesary......they were in existence approx from '70 till '75.......some great Chiefs & BN FFs were in the unit.... when i was in LAD*108 ,every third night they were in the 35 & after we moved to Union Av they were joined by SQ*3 on those nights who acted as the first section of ENG*216 ..........BN*59 was a full time BN who was organized twice during those GREAT years.......first time was in ENG*275 in South Jamaica Queens with the intent of lightening up the workload of BN*50 & BN*54...the 51 was still in w/ ENG*294 in Woodhaven......nowadays the 51 is in w/ ENG*308 & kind of picks up some of 50 & 54 s boxes ......59 started in  '70 & closed in '75......they were reorganized in the qtrs of ENG*319 in Middle Village Queens in '84  until '89   they were a full time BN given boxes to lighten the load of BN*46 in Queens & Bn* 28 just over the Bklyn. border.....however they really only got boxes in the slower portion of the 46 & 28......both Bns remained busy.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 18, 2010, 06:02:35 PM
Thanks there "68jk09" for providing that info. I remember hearing the "59" and "60" Battalions, but really didn't realize how they worked and what area's they served. Thank you very much for sharing that with us.
  On a side note, there are many readers on here that weren't around for those very busy FDNY War Years. For myself, and my brother, (georged4997), we were just a couple of part time buffs that got to see some of what went on during those busy times. Or how those firefighters fought the fires in America's busiest neighborhoods and worked the busiest firefighting outfits the World has ever seen. And probadly will never see again.
  "My Younger Buff Years" is really dedicated to those guys that fought a huge amount of fire activity on a daily basis. No Firefighters, have ever come close to doing the fire activity that the FDNY WAR YEARS FIREFIGHTERS FOUGHT. There has been a huge interest in this subject worldwide.
  "68jk09", as a firefighter of those busy times, and as your other brothers who have fought those fires, "its time for you guys to stand up and take a bow". We Salute You. And in our own selfish way, we hope that you will contribute to "My Younger Buff Years" as you were there doing it. Thank You.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on June 19, 2010, 01:00:56 PM
My dad rode in Bn 60.  Loved it.  All fire duty - no admin/no paperwork - except fire reports.  Rotated into great firehouses.  Busy every tour.  Thanks 68jk09 and nfd2004
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 19, 2010, 01:40:30 PM
My dad rode in Bn 60.  Loved it.  All fire duty - no admin/no paperwork - except fire reports.  Rotated into great firehouses.  Busy every tour.  Thanks 68jk09 and nfd2004

  "mack" I'm sure you read above what "68jk09" wrote about Bn 60. Let me quote: "some great chiefs and FF's were in that unit". That say's it all. Being called a "Great Chief or Firefighter" by your peers in the fire dept is something that is "earned" not just some pat on the back given out. To me, your father is considered to be one of "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters" to ever live. He was a Leader of many other "Greatest Generations of Firefighters" who paid their dues every shift they worked. And after some 30 or 40 years, nobody has ever come close to the kind of work they did.
  I'm sure I saw the 60 Battalion at many jobs in those days, and I'm sure your father was there. "mack", I'm sure that you're very proud of your father. I didn't even know him, but just from what has been said, "we are all very proud of him".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on June 19, 2010, 02:19:46 PM
There has been a lot of questions regarding former battalions, TCU's, Engine and Ladder CO's and other units. Mike Boucher has created a great PDF document regarding all this. I think the site is NYFD.Com. This is a great reference document, if anyone has a more correct web site address please post. You will not embarass me ;D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on June 19, 2010, 02:27:08 PM
This is it:   http://www.nyfd.com/cityhist.pdf (http://www.nyfd.com/cityhist.pdf)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on June 19, 2010, 02:38:00 PM
U R So Rite! Thanx for the assist! ;D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on June 24, 2010, 12:01:47 AM
I remember as a kid listening to war stories told in fire house kitchens, softball games and picnics by "old timers" who talked about the good old days of the 1940s and 1950s.  These were well-respected veterans who talked about jobs, operating without masks, being able to take "good feeds".  They spoke of raising heavy wooden ladders, stretching into unsprinkled loft buildings, putting out fires without sprinklers, poor fire codes, using scaling ladders, riding on the back step in winter, training with safety nets, double companies, squads for manpower, and using fire alarm boxes to communicate with the dispatcher.  They considered their era difficult, dangerous, busy.  And it was.  Busy companies did 600 or 700 runs to make the FDNY top 25 list for Runs and Workers.  Most were World War II or Korean veterans and they considered their fire duty similar to their combat war years - maybe more dangerous. 

The "War Years" of the 60s/70s/80s, into the 90s in some areas, cannot be understated.  Countless fires, false alarms, voice alarm, adaptive response, TCUs, ADVs, covered rigs, radioes, safety ropes, masks, companies responding 9000 runs a year. There were intense physical demands.  Injuries - lots of injuries.  Too few members trying to do too much.  2 engines and a truck doing the work of a full first alarm assignment.  I remember seeing my dad come home from working a night tour with three soot-stained shirts, blisters on his neck, puffy eyes.  That was normal. These were "War Years" and you have to admire the firefighters (in NYC and other cities) who served during this era.

Things have changed significantly.  I got to thinking my last night shift just how different things are today from tours worked during the "War Years".  A 2 AM medical run (one of many that night).  Within 5 minutes, members go from their bunks to a high rise with AED, O2, stretcher, aide bag, etc.  Within 10 minutes, vitals checked, patient assessment made, patient on O2, etc.  Within 20-25 minutes, EKG, line started, dexi, etc.  Paramedics/EMTs/firefighters are routinely performing life saving skills that emergency room doctors used to do in the not too distant past. Patient stabilization, pain management, transport.  There is no room for error.  Every patient presents an opportunity to contract disease.  There is the treat of liability claims, even if proper protocols are followed.  There are privacy issues.  Medical treatment records.  All that - betweeen 2 AM and 3 AM.  There are also HazMat runs.  There is not enough money to fund all the units required.  Firefighters are getting laid off in cities.  Training has been reduced.  And there are still fires.  Maybe not as many as the 1980s - but still, a lot of fires. Units are doing 2000/3000/4000 runs a year.  Emergency medical care/terrorism deterrence/environment protection/response to disasters/cyber attack protection requirements/and fighting fires? I do not want to diminish in any way the challenges and contributions of the past but I thought - are we in a "New War Years" era, of sorts?   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 24, 2010, 08:45:06 AM
"mack" that sure covers it over the last 6 or 7 decades. I can relate to EVERY Word. It's like what I saw and remember too. For anybody who is into the fire service, I think being a part of the so-called "baby boomer generation" was about the best time to be around. The Great Stories and Role Models of the "Greatest Generation" were our fathers, espically being on the job. The "Baby Boomers" got to be a part of the busiest time for fires in history. Whether it was the FDNY, or any other city. We got the chance to Tiller the Hook and Ladder and/or ride the back step of the Engine. It's just been the Best of Both Worlds for me.
  And "mack" is right. In a short few years, we probadly will be reading about the "War Years" of today's Firefighters. A few recent visits to some firehouses, and hearing what the current generation of firefighters have to say, I'm sure there will be plenty to write about.
  Although I'd Love to be about 35-40 years younger these days (currently a fat, balding, 61 year old), I wouldn't want to trade my Great Memories of the FDNY Buffing, or buffing a few other busy cities, or years on the job in the small City of Norwich, Ct for anything. Just really a Great time to be a part of the Fire Service.
  But I do hope to be around so that I can read the stories of the New War Years Firefighters. Even the most seasoned retired firefighters might be amazed at some of "their stories". I've heard a few already.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 28, 2010, 01:47:03 PM
As the temperature and humidity rises outside my bedroom window (on 6/28/2010) in Connecticut, these were the type of days that really saw the most action. I would leave my home about 8 AM usually headed to the South Bronx. Sometimes it was Harlem or Bed Sty/Bushwick. Of course I would take with me a picnic lunch because there just wasn't any place to eat in those neighborhoods, except the White Castle on Webster Ave in the Bronx.
  I'd usually get to the Bronx New England throughway around 11 AM. Of course the scanner would be non-stop with activity. Co-op City had just been built and I think Eng 66/Lad 61 was newly formed there. As I entered the Bronx, I would usually see either Eng 66 or 38 operating at a rubbish fire off the highway there. There were no stores or shopping centers there at that time. As I approached the Third Ave Exit off the Cross Bronx, maybe a job was being put "under control". Once settled in, usually around Eng 46 or 82, one of my riders would grab a paper and pencil for when the activity really picked up. He would just write down the box numbers, then if we needed to, we'd look it up in the box location book. It was impossible to keep track of everything. And we'd only have the Bronx/Manhatten on. A job would come in, and as we head for that job, another closer one would come in that we would "take in" instead. Sometimes you'd see two or three seperate columns of smoke. Of course one could be a car fire or an oil burner. Sometimes we'd get fooled.
  As the day went on, and night approached, the work and runs would pick up. There would be jobs that we wouldn't even consider going to, because they were a little bit out of our reach. It just wasn't worth leaving the neighborhood to chase one fire a few miles away. Just too much work in one area, to leave it for another.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: patrickfd on June 28, 2010, 04:01:00 PM
You also knew you were in the city because within 500' over the city line on I95 south you would see an abandoned vehicle on the side of the road. Stripped and burned out.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 28, 2010, 04:37:34 PM
You also knew you were in the city because within 500' over the city line on I95 south you would see an abandoned vehicle on the side of the road. Stripped and burned out.

  You got that right Pat. Always, had a burned out ADV on the side of the road. No tires, nothing left. Nothing but a burned out shell. 

  Hope "Patrickfd" doesn't mind me mentioning it. As I understand it, Pat's father was on the job and a part of those Busy Hartford War Years, and before that they lived near/hung out at 231/120s house.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on June 29, 2010, 02:43:23 AM
Thanks nfd2001. Stripped cars all over the city (ADVs): (http://img84.imageshack.us/img84/6849/amdbornbronx2.th.jpg) (http://img84.imageshack.us/img84/6849/amdbornbronx2.jpg)

ADV history video:
"The Vandals" part 3 of 3 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qUDh1D8pxz4&feature=related#)

The Bronx - 70's/80's - (FDNY response 3 mins 16 sec into clip)
New York Bronx (South Bronx) in the 70`s and 80`s (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AtI-En92Xso&feature=related#)

1980s:
The Fires and The Wasteland (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NgFOvIARlDc&feature=related#ws)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 29, 2010, 08:21:07 AM
"mack", Thanks again. Do I say; "Thanks for posting those Great Memories" ????? Looking at the first above picture with the "ADV" and the vacant 5-6 brick today, it's hard to believe that things were so bad there. On the first video called "the Vandals", yes, that's the way it was. Nothing lasted long on the streets as it was shown. And how many times did those Greatest Generation Firefighters just put out those ADV Fires. I think in Brooklyn near the Belt Parkway was a favorite drop off point. I remember hearing about that area with it's numerous car fires. And notice the booster line and lack of bunker gear. Some how those thousands of car fires got put out that way. It was just so routine.
  I think the third video, "the fires and the wasteland", might have been posted here before. But it tells the story and sure has some Great War Years Photos. Again, just hard to believe how bad things really were in those days.
  I don't know if anybody else had any problems viewing the second video called "New York Bronx (South Bronx) 70s and 80s". It just wouldn't play for me. If anybody can help me (us) out, I'd appreciate it. I'd sure love to view it.
  Thank you very much "macK' for posting these. I guess I have to say, for me, some Great Memories. That actually may be a little "sick" for the average person viewing these videos. Most people liked spending their off time in parks, or at beaches. For me it was the Ghettos of The South Bronx, Harlem, and parts of Brooklyn. Well yes, "I guess that really is a Little Sick".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: raybrag on June 29, 2010, 11:16:43 AM
Great videos!  NFD2004:  Embedding is disabled on the 2nd video, so you've got to watch it on YouTube.  To do that, right click on the video window, then choose "Watch on YouTube".  Voila . . . it comes up on YouTube in a new window!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on June 29, 2010, 01:19:41 PM
Sorry nfd2004 about the difficulty viewing the second video.  It may be my posting mistake but for some of these videos, you get the message that it is "embedded".  You have to click on the embedded message to view independent of nyc firenet.  The video is collection of Bronx street scenes from the late 70s.  There are some clips of FDNY units responding and operating.

The Youtube video clips of NYC neighborhoods in the 50s and 60s show: stores, cars, trucks, apartment buildings, people sitting on their stoops, kids playing basketball and riding bikes, families.  The 70s and 80s videos show: rubble, vacant buildings, vacant blocks, grafitti, legs of mail boxes that disappeared; boarded up stores, barred windows on occupied buildings, traffic lights that do not work, cars ignoring red lights that did work, empty streets, abandoned cars (or what was left of them), garbage, boarded up churches, kids playing in empty lots on piles of bricks.  It's amazing how much destruction happened in 10-15 years. The videos are like the bombed-out cites of World War II. 

Back then, there always seemed to be a siren or air horn that could be heard and the haze and smell of smoke from last night's fires - indications that new neighborhoods were being destroyed.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on June 29, 2010, 04:50:58 PM
Early one evening we got a run , as the engine door went up, there was a car facing the door and a guy screaming something to the effect that his girlfriend had been kidnapped. This guy and his story obviously didn't fit into the neighborhood. One of the brothers told him we had a run, to move the car and we'd be back. I think the officer called for PD as we responded. When we got back he was gone but his car was still there, double parked in front of the firehouse. After the next run the hood was popped, the next run the hood was up and the battery was gone. Next run,  doors open, radio  gone and the trunk was open. It became comical,  after every run someone would take a walk over and report what was gone. Even on the runs someone would make a prediction of what would be taken by the time we got back. Not much left by morning. Cops told us the guy was involved in a drug deal gone bad. I don't think he got arrested but he didn't have any wheels, literally.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on June 29, 2010, 07:18:06 PM
One of the '60s tricks to get a brand new car battery in BKLYN was .....while the unit was out on a run ......they would slip into the vacant lot we parked in & pop your hood , remove your battery & throw it in the bushes......after the tour you could not start your vehicle.......you would open the hood & .....no batt......so you buy a new one & go home.....next tour in they would spot the car & lift the new batt........when they did this to my '64 Dodge ghetto wagon ....i took the useless pike axe & made a big hole right in the hood ....dropped a big chain into it & around the bumper & back up........locked it with a big padlock......saved my new batt......one other BROTHER had new tires on his car.....they loosened the lug nuts on the front & rear tires on the side of the car facing away from the Firehouse......he got in to go home but only made it around the corner when the clunking made him stop & pull over .......he walked back to the FH to get some assistance ....they were watching & had all 4 tires off & gone before they got back to the car.......gang of punks that hung out on the block made their living stealing cars & parts.......rarely did any time for it even when caught.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 30, 2010, 11:38:51 AM
Great videos!  NFD2004:  Embedding is disabled on the 2nd video, so you've got to watch it on YouTube.  To do that, right click on the video window, then choose "Watch on YouTube".  Voila . . . it comes up on YouTube in a new window!
  Thanks "raybrag" for your help. I was able to view that video by clicking on the words under the box (if anybody can understand what I'm trying to say).
  I do think that video was posted earlier too. But with 40 plus pages of "My Younger Buff Years" it's kinda hard to follow. Besides, I'm sure there are some out there that are seeing what the South Bronx looked like for their first time, during those very busy War Years. For anybody who wasn't around and maybe questioned what it was like, "this video showed it". Blocks and blocks of burned out buildings, from fire after fire. It wasn't caused from any bomb being dropped. Its still hard to believe that this took place in what we call a Civilized Country. And just a few miles from the high society, flashy parts, of midtown Manhattan.
  And it wasn't just the miles of the South Bronx streets. Similiar areas of the Lower East side, Brownsville, Bed Sty, Bushwick, and Harlem you could also drive for blocks and see entire streets of burned out buildings. A little later the pattern started to spread to Flatbush, Coney Island, Jamaica, Washington Heights, and the West Bronx as we got into the 80s. My friend "bxboro" told me, when he started buffing in the 80s, He would see Ladder 44s bucket up at a job everytime he went down to buff.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on June 30, 2010, 06:44:06 PM
As "68jk09" says about the chains and padlocks going through the engine hood of the ghetto wagons (private vehicle used to drive to work), I certainly remember seeing that on a few cars. I didn't realize about the "new battery" being taken after stealing the original older battery. Those people knew just what they were doing. One of those unwritten fringe benefits of working in these areas. Strange but it was those same people that so depended on that neighborhood firehouse. The same people that were steeling those batteries were the one's depending on the fire dept to save their life and valuables.
  And going with what "turk132" had to say, as we would make the trip to the Bronx, we'd notice an ADV along the side of the road. Still had tires, battery etc. As we would start our day of chasing a few jobs, somebody would mention; "I wonder what's left of that ADV". Generally, by midnight it was completely stripped and maybe set on fire.
  Throughout all these stories and pages written, you really had to be there to witness what was going on. As I said before, when we left to go home, "it was like they opened the gates and let us out". Almost like leaving a "third world country" and then being back to civilization in a matter of minutes. And although I can't speak for everybody, as I watch some of these videos and look at the photos, or read the stories, it's still hard for me to believe what went on there some 30-40 years ago. "And I was there".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on June 30, 2010, 07:23:12 PM
This may not be much but, the funniest thing I saw concerning an ADV was one that used to be around the block from 332/175 years ago. The rotting hulk was there so long there was nothing left other than the shell of the car and a small tree was growing inside it.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on June 30, 2010, 07:24:27 PM
LOL!!!!!!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on June 30, 2010, 07:58:34 PM
Some of the local swine would actually bang on the front door of the firehouse and offer to sell a car battery to the members. This generally would result in an announcement over the 'bitch box' for all members to check their cars to see whose battery had just been lifted.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mercurygrandmarquis1 on July 01, 2010, 03:44:12 PM
time to tell you all my buff story from back in the day,
in the mid/late 90s my uncle worked light duty at division 8 (which is in a 5 minute drive from my house) and he used to "borrow" the old 1991 suburban that was used as the messanger SUV to visit. and when he visited he used to come with the lights and siren on. he also used to let me play in it. one thing i remember about the suburban is the black handset style radio microphone. which i was surprised to notice are still being used when i visited D8 to take a few pictures back in February.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on July 09, 2010, 09:46:27 PM
I remember driving along the Bruckner Expressway (maybe late 70s) midday.  I saw a new car pulled over, hood open, driver apparently gone for help.  I also saw a van pulling up behind it with 3 or 4 guys jumping out of it.  I suspected what was going to happen so I got off at the next exit, spent a few minutes circling around, made my way back on the Bruckner - and the damn car was already stripped.  Tires/wheels/everything gone.  No sign of the van.  I have to say that even though I was pissed, I was also impressed.  Unfortunately, there were no cell phones and even if I was able to invent one, cops had bigger crimes to worry. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on July 09, 2010, 09:55:53 PM
  Back in 1972 around 10 AM on the Major Deegan service rd. (E. 135th  between Alexander & Lincoln Aves.) driving my 1963 Ford Galaxie wagon when I hear a noise from the undercarriage. I pull over to peer under the car and some guy pulls up alongside me and yells: "You got the tires, I'll take the battery!" :o
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 09, 2010, 10:41:42 PM
Reading these stories, it might sound strange, but I'm just glad I was a part of it. Besides seeing the worlds busiest fire dept in action, there was always plenty of other action going on. It was an education that you couldn't get from a book. At times, some things, I wouldn't give a second look to. Sometimes you just became so immune to it. Where I would notice the difference is if I brought a guy down for his first or second visit. They were just in shock at what they saw. As you'd ride down a street and see piles of rubbish, stripped abondoned cars, blocks of burned out buildings, fire hydrants running flowing thousands of gallons of water into the street, etc, etc. All that while chasing probadly more fires in a day, than some of my friends had seen in a week, a month, or even a year.
  I think my record for catching working fires was 11 in one day. But that was only in about eight or ten square miles. I think NYC total is about 360 Sq miles. I remember one time taking in a Second Alarm in the North Bronx, just because it was on our way home. Otherwise I wouldn't have drove to it.
  Yes, it was about the fires. But it was also about all the other kinds of stories that have been mentioned. A time in history that most people want to forget. But if you were there, you will never forget.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: E-211 on July 13, 2010, 09:46:05 PM
This topic is like a first class novel,.... I can't stop reading it. Well, at any rate I'll add a couple of my own escapades.

One time I was going down to 110 Church to stop at the store at HQ. I had the usual "buff accouterments on the car (chevy Impala), and my red strobe on the dash, gear in the back seat. It really looked like an under cover FDNY marshall's car, except it had Pennsylvania plates, So I get out of the car after parking it in an FDNY only parking spot, in the standard uniform of that day, radio across my shoulder, and another marshall ( a real one) walks up to me and says, " we're using out of state plates now??? " I said Yeah,.... latest thing, concealment, and walked away leaving the "real" marshall quite beside himself......... I couldn't stop laughing all the way up the elevator.
ROFLOL X100
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: E-211 on July 13, 2010, 10:02:15 PM
Well, another time while at E-211's in the late 70's, we were dispatched about 03:00, as 3rd due eng. to  a 10-75, fire on the top floor of a 5 st o/m/d/ heavy fire coming out the whole top fl. We pulled up and we were trying to get a hydrant, but a car was parked right in front of the closest hydrant. So, we had to find the next best, and lay the line from the tower operating back to the hydrant. We did so, but grabbed a nearby cop to complain about the "hydrant" situation. When we told him what happened, he promised to "take care of it" for us.

 I was with the mpo back at the engine, and I was watching the cop. He walked around the offending car, cut the stems on all 4 tires, then proceded to whack the windshield of the offending vehicle several times with his night stick, causing the expected result. He topped off his "night's work" by completing the job w/ a ticket for parking on a hydrant !! WOW What Service !!!   The fire was held to an all hands, although there was one 10-45 code 1 in the apt.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: anesti on July 13, 2010, 10:28:40 PM
Lol at all of these car stories,the only valid one i can remember my uncle had a beat up  78 camaro in the late 80's to the early 90's. This thing was a wreck to begin with but it only had cost him a few hundred bucks, the doors on that thing would randomly open while in drive, it couldnt make it up hill,and it would speed up without slowing down on a downhill.Also a horrible fish smell. Well the engine finally gave in one day, instead of taking it to a chop shop he decided to dumped it on burnside and jerome we cab it back home. So the next morning  my uncle decides lets go see if its there so me and my older cousin go along. When we get there all we find is the engine and a note ontop of it Which read "hey buddy next time clean your trunk" little did we realize that the dried up rotted fish that was on the engine was the source of the fish smell.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on July 13, 2010, 10:55:46 PM
There have been several instances when a supply line between and engine and a hydrant is run through an offending car parked next to the hydrant.  My company did it at least once at a fire on Linden Blvd.  When the line was uncoupled, it just happened to drain inside the offending car.  The chauffeur of Ladder 113 came out of the building and stood in front of the offending vehicle.  As he said " I can't believe anyone would park next to a hydrant", he flicked his wrist holding an axe and took out one of the headlights.  He moved a few feet and said "why would anyone park here?".  His wrist flicked once again and took out the other headlight.  Then we had the PD sector car issue a summons as we left the scene.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on July 14, 2010, 10:02:31 AM
That's AWESOME!!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on July 14, 2010, 10:51:19 AM
One of the best I've seen was TL138 needing to get their boom up fast and dropping a tormentor across the trunk of a parked car. I'm currently trying to locate a photo of it.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on July 14, 2010, 05:01:50 PM
I remember a job in Boston during the 70's It was a really cold night in the city when a box was struck for the back bay. Engine 33 pulled up to the hydrant but there was a Benz parked on the hydrant. Some companies would have knocked out both windows and make sure there was a loose coupling fitting in the middle. In other words they would soak the interior. At this job the car was on an incline, and the hydrant fitting was not completely tight, if you know what I mean! The job went to a fifth, after 7 hours of pumping the Benz was in a foot of solid ice! Payback is a moth--f---er, ain't it
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on July 14, 2010, 05:53:50 PM
In the early 60's I spent some time at Pease AFB in Portsmouth,NH.A few of us would go to Boston & due some buffing. I do remember several times seeing car windows broken and the suction hose run through the car parked at a hydrant. Also saw some very good ladder work in Boston.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: E-211 on July 15, 2010, 08:57:01 PM
Well time for another E-211 escapade.....

It was during the mid 70's when I used to buff at E-82 & L-31, By this time, I had gotten to know many of the guys on the shift, which by coincidence was the same shift Dennis Smith had  been on, but a short time after he had left 82's. I was helping with the meal in the kitchen, and we got a call for a fire on a barge at Hunts Point. So, off we go .... we get there and it was a garbage barge at the dock(fun city ). So the Lt. has us stretch a 1 3/4 line but doesn't connect it to the pumper, but to the hydrant nearby. We stay and "wet down" for some time, and it was getting about nighttime shift change, and the Lt. was also covering the night shift as well. He says to me { I had my own gear on} do you think you can handle this **** until I can take the outgoing shift back and come back for you?? I says sure Loo, I'll hold the fort here... he says great we'll be back shortly. So, I've got my scanner with me and I'm on the Bronx Freq listening, and wetting down the trash fire on the barge at the dock. I hear nothing from 82's, and I was wondering if they forgot me at Hunts Point, and how I would explain getting stranded there.

About 45 min. later {still no radio traffic from 82} they come back as I could hear the siren approaching, and saw them pull up. Loo says everything under control?? No sweat Loo, we're good. Great says he. We stayed for about another hour till it was pretty well extinguished, and then went back to quarters and back in service. After that call, I got invited downstairs, into the brothers "inner sanctum" where they had much entertainment items, and "beverages". What really blew my mind, was the old beer keg that they had cut out, and made a urinal of right there in middle of the "entertainment room" which I assume had been placed there for "convenience" so one wouldn't have to go far to drop the tank so to speak. I made good friends there among Dennis Smith's former shift members, but none better than Buddy Croce. Buddy was an adjunct big brother, father confessor, and house cook. Although I never rode with him on the truck, we just hit it off pretty good.

All the brothers there always treated me as one of their own, and I never felt like an outsider. I still remember all the burned out 5 & 6 st tenements, and I could never get over the scene of the Bronx in those days looking much like I had seen of WWII pictures of Berlin being bombed out, there was hardly a difference in appearance.
I always had a great time there at La Casa Grande, and I'll never forget those days riding with E-82 & L-31.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 15, 2010, 10:12:54 PM
E 211, I have to guess that being at Eng 82 and Lad 31 in those Busy War Years was "NO" "PARTY". Those guys saw their Brothers get hurt and disablied all the time. During those busy years, the FDNY was loosing 11 Firefighters a year in line of duty deaths. Many FDNY Firefighters had to get off the job from serious injuries. They saw their Brothers get hurt and even die in front of them. The free times they did have was far and few apart. They'd sometimes go from job to job without even getting time to eat their meal.
  These Firefighters threw themselves into danger day after day. sometimes hour after hour. I talked to one retired member of Engine 82 within the last few months. His stories are of seeing his Brothers get hurt on the job. And even die on th job. I asked him if he ever goes back there. He said "NO". Just too many memories. I don't think he was referring to his "good" memories.
  The Firefighters of Engine Co 82 and Ladder Co 31 were the Busiest in the World. If they had time to relax, I think they deserved it. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: L-103(ret) on July 15, 2010, 11:11:01 PM
NFD 2004.... Reading your blurb I think back when I was in the trenches(E-290 L-103,  65 -81) and I remember carrying out maimed and injured members and non of us were ever sorry we had a busy tour or didn't rest long enough.  Why do you think we fudged the #s so we wouldn't have to inter change the next night,  and work with "Queens Quiff's" which I became one day (E-315. ) Driving to work on Southern State Pky' and seeing 3 columns of smoke rising out of Bk. got everybody in the car pool excited.  The fact that we were doing a job no one else on the planet could do was better then any rest or free time we might have gotten.  Plus they paid us to do it.  Don't feel to sorry for the Brothers we all loved every min. we worked and were thrilled with working with the guys we worked with.  God bless them all.  Mike Weinberger,  L-103 Ret.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on July 16, 2010, 02:06:44 AM
Mike... i know exactly what you are saying.....going to work, i used to get on the LIE in Flushing & as i accelerated in the entrance lane heading to BROOKLYN i felt like i was on a rocket ship heading for the moon......41 years ...it was a great trip .....some days were sad ...but most were EXCELLENT ...would'nt trade it for anything ......i agree about the interchange it blew.....nobody in LAD*108 wanted to do it either......& the Queens Quiffs ......yes we used to say that too....in later years though i was Capt of ENG*275 & LAD*126 for about 6 years then BC in Bn*46 for another 10 ......Queens became great too....i enjoyed all of it till they said " hit the road Jack"......one year too soon i wanted to do 42 but the body didnt hold out....i dont know if i ever met you but i drove John Vig for 9 of my 10 years in RES*2 & he mentioned your name many times........Regards ...Jack Kleehaas.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on July 16, 2010, 08:27:27 AM
The Busy companies of Ladder 103, Ladder 108, Rescue 2, then a litlle later Eng 275, Ladder 126, and Battalion 46. For Mike Weinberger and Jack Kleehass, "enjoy your retirement". You certainly earned it. I have hung out in those neighborhoods that you worked over the years. I have been to Ladder 103 and Rescue 2s quarters several years ago. (when Rescue 2 was with Engine Co 210, and their current quarters). I was always treated with respect by the members at each house. Thank You, and again, "enjoy your retirements". And Thank you for telling your stories on this site.
  Yes, it's True, during those Busy War Years those firefighters wanted to fight fires. The moral within the dept was as high as it could get. At least from what I had seen. As busy and dangerous as it was, those guys "Loved going to work".
  In my above post, I wanted to try and say working in a busy house like 82/31 was "No Party". Although I'm sure most enjoyed going to work, reality was that many members got hurt in those days. I may have read into the post by "E 211" (above), that it was some kind of party going on, when actually, those guys just loved going to work.
  Mark (E 211) has been very good to me. He sent me photos of those Combo Company Helmet Fronts. I just didn't want people on this site to think that these firehouses were Social Clubs. They were homes to some very Busy and Great Firefighters. (and Mark R, hope we're still buddies).
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: L-103(ret) on July 16, 2010, 10:05:48 AM
68jk09...  It was good to see Viggys name again,  he was one of the guys who broke me in as a proby,  John and Tom Neary,  they were some pieces of work!  All I ever saw was the bottoms of their boots as they went in.  They were always doing stuff that left our mouths open.  Did you know Capt. Freddy Gallagher and his chauffeur Tommy Dillon?  They were a couple of alumni.  I don't know which was better working a tour or carpooling with those guys.   When I worked in 315 I would try and take the details down the hill to 275 and 126.  The Queens lifers didn't like it down there to much.  As I remember they wouldn't let me pay for meals,  but they did let me pay for beverages,  and the Chief didn't care if ya wore brown shoes. We sure did have fun huh?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on July 16, 2010, 10:23:52 AM
68jk09...  It was good to see Viggys name again,  he was one of the guys who broke me in as a proby,  John and Tom Neary,  they were some pieces of work!  All I ever saw was the bottoms of their boots as they went in.  They were always doing stuff that left our mouths open.  Did you know Capt. Freddy Gallagher and his chauffeur Tommy Dillon?  They were a couple of alumni.  I don't know which was better working a tour or carpooling with those guys.   When I worked in 315 I would try and take the details down the hill to 275 and 126.  The Queens lifers didn't like it down there to much.  As I remember they wouldn't let me pay for meals,  but they did let me pay for beverages,  and the Chief didn't care if ya wore brown shoes. We sure did have fun huh?

BROWN SHOES- LCC-Tiller Ladder-28
http://fdnysbravest.com/fp90.htm (http://fdnysbravest.com/fp90.htm)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on July 16, 2010, 03:49:58 PM
Tom &  Fred... 2 tough Firefighters but also 2 real gentlemen.      On FDNYrant i have posted pictures of Tom getting a 20 year gift & Lt. Zooby is in one also.......they are in the "Iron Lung" forum under "Group Photos".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: E-211 on July 16, 2010, 06:03:00 PM
Nah 2004,.... nothing read into it in the above post, they guys I was with at 82 & 31 were the tops. I never thought anything about it being a party house, never even crossed my mind, and shouldn't cross anybody else's  either. Those of us who love the job ( as one NEVER gets over it ) Like me and others, KNOW that we all need to ( take a blow ) as we used to say. It was some of the best times I ever experienced being with the Brothers there, and I wouldn't trade it away for anything.

After joining Aux's , and being assigned to E-211 in Williamsburg, I was welcomed and adopted by another "family", those members of 211 & 119. They too demonstrated the fraternity of the brotherhood to me, and I had good years there. Although I "cut my FDNY teeth" with La Casa Grande ( and was glad about that) I settled down with my company in Brooklyn. I had a really good Loo there, named Rich DiPadova. Lt. D.P. as we called him, went on to become Capt of E-33 in Manhattan, then a BN chief. I wish I could find out whatever happened to him since. If any of our fellow members remember him, I'd certainly LOVE to hear about it.

Nowadays, serving locally as the fire commissioner to a local dept., I treat our brothers with the highest respect, and make all due consideration in serving both them and our community. Since I can no longer "be on the line", I figured it would be good to use my years of experience to the benefit of those among whom I now live. Even as Commish,... it sure is good to be around the dept again, and at least present when needed.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: fltpara16 on July 18, 2010, 11:48:29 PM
68jk09: I am a Battalion Chief in Virginia and live in a community that has several retired FDNY brothers living here.  We get together once a month with the retired brothers (FDNY and Washington DC) for a "Board Meeting".  This consist of lunch, a few appropriate beverages, and many stories of the War Years.  Your name has come up, as one of the members was a LT. with you in R2, Lenny S. I enjoy the stories from those years, as well as from the retired members of 124 Truck who are also on the "Board".  It sounds like an exceptional time in firefighting, and I feel blessed to have these brothers pass along the stories as well as useful information we can still put into practice.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on July 19, 2010, 12:36:52 AM
fltpara16.......nice to hear from you........WOW.......say hello to Lenny for me......when he was a FF in LAD*124 & I was in LAD*108  both units were in the 35*BN prior to the 28*Bn being organized........in addition to working with him in R*2 i also worked for him on the side for awhile......my regards to all the VA/FDNY in your group.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: fltpara16 on July 19, 2010, 08:42:43 PM
68jk09: We have a "board meeting" next week and I will say hello to Lenny for you.  We are so fortunate to have Lenny and the rest of the retired guys from LAD*124 and ENG*21 living in our community and willing to pass along the War Years history. 68jk09, if you are ever in VA there is an open invitation for you to join us! 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on July 20, 2010, 05:17:35 PM
Thank you.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: E-211 on August 03, 2010, 10:53:30 PM
OK Folks;
It's been a little while, so Here goes with another "fond memory" from the "war years". In the early times, while recently being assigned my Aux. spot at E-211's I had come up from Philadelphia (where I was living at the time) with some of the other members of our company E-81 ( Philly's Reserve Fire Force), to show them around the city, and see some of the "sights". My buddies always wanted to see an FDNY Rescue Unit, and I could think of none better  than R-2.

So we ended up at the quarters of R-2, and stopped in to introduce ourselves. In the usual great hospitality, the brothers were very kind, and made us feel right at home. They "elected" one of their "junior" shift members to give us the full tour of the station and the apparatus. We viewed all the wonderful accoutraments that R-2 carried, and how the many various tools carried were to be employed.

While up inside the rescue, the guy was showing us many tools, and decided to show us the LYLE gun, used to fire rope and rescue lines where needed. he was very detailed in his description, but failed to realize that the LYLE gun was loaded,.......... Well, you guessed it, when he pulled the trigger, it went off with the loudest bang you can immagine, and fired the steel rod in the barrel right back into the reserve apparatus parked behind R-2, cauing a huge dent in the front of the reserve truck!!!!!

Well needless to say, everyone was shocked, suprised, and runing for cover. The Rescue officer came flying down the stairs yelling copius explatives at the "jr member", and wondering how he'd explain to the chief how the "dent" got in the reserve truck.By that time we thought it wise to render our quick thanks, and make a hasty departure. I still always wonder however, if that "Jr. member" stayed at R-2,....or got shipped of to Staten Island, to man one of the DSU units at the land fill.

Only in ::) New York, I suppose,..... ROFLOL :D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 03, 2010, 11:49:40 PM
I probadly started buffing the FDNY right after my first ride with Rescue 2. That was back in 1968 with the late Lt Hamilton. And when they shared quarters with Engine 210 on Carlton Ave. That's a long time ago. And around that time the first Tower ladders were just coming into service.
  During all of those years, and up to this day, I can only remember seeing a ladder pipe used Once. That was at a Fourth or Fifth Alarm in Brooklyn, on I believe Waverly Place (?), I think near Atlantic Ave. As I remember it, it was Ladder Co 108 who operated an American LaFrance tiller ladder at the time. I remember seeing the ropes being used to guide the nozzle. And that was new to me. Most of the fires I had seen in Connecticut would put a guy at the tip of the ladder operating that ladder pipe nozzle. For me, watching the FDNY use that ladder pipe with the ropes was another learning experience.
  But over those 40 Plus years of chasing fires in the City of New York, I can only remember seeing the FDNY operating a Ladder Pipe that One Time.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 04, 2010, 10:20:55 AM
  I had a different experience because buffing in the Bronx & Harlem I saw ladderpipes used at many fires. The start was in the early 60's when there were many ladder trucks with 2 (one for fly ladder and one under the bed ladder) ladderpipes. Those were the 1959-60 Mack C/Maxims, 1960-61 ALF's and some 1956 ALF's. The rest of the metal aerials had single ladderpipes that were either mounted under the bed ladder (only 35 ft. height) or carried in a tray or basket on the running board for attachment to the tip. Some wooden aerials were also equipped with ladderpipes and the first two were installed on L45 & L48 in the early 50's. FDNY used hallyards (ropes) to control the nozzle from the ground vs. the man at the tip that was the norm in other places.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on August 04, 2010, 07:34:06 PM
Thanks G-man for the interesting info on the use of ladderpipes in the FDNY
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on August 06, 2010, 02:11:04 AM
E 211 ... In regard to your post on the Lyle Gun...I was working in R*2 when that happened ......it was right around the change of tours at 1800 & the apparatus floor was loaded with guys.....i was standing by the workbench at the side of the rig.....first a loud bang then some pinging as the projectile richocheted around .....thankfully no one was hit......the Senior man in the Company was working & realizing what had happened ....he picked up the projectile... walked to the rear of the rig & threw it at the guy who did it ......cursed & slammed the back doors of the rig ...do you remember that ? the guy who did it sure learned a lesson....he retired as a Deputy Chief a few years ago.......i have seen that projectile go through a wooden table standing on end & also saw it go off accidentally in the Rescue Office on the third floor ...it went through the office window across the street & through a wire glass window of the commercial bldg across the street.....we used it one day to secure a large steel chimney at Woodhull Hosp that was in danger of collapse in a windstorm.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on August 06, 2010, 02:40:12 AM
In regard to ladderpipes.....i was in LAD*108 when we still had a Tiller rig.....it had a BED ladderpipe which was permanently affixed to the first non extending section & was controlled by a crank with wire cable  to control up & down movement & side to side movement was done by rotating the turntable we used it once in awhile at a vacant that was in serious structural danger of collapse especially if no Tow Lad was on the box or if we were in front of the bldg & the street was blocked.....on a few occasions at factorys i used the aerial to push in the rolldown door & if it didnt fall down i would lift the corrugated door up with the ladder then the pipe was right in postion to provide a quick knock down.....it was designed to be supplied with 3 1/2 but we used to ride with 2 lengths of 2 1/2 folded under the turntable to allow for quick hookup & it supplied enough water.......the FLY ladderpipe was carried not attached to the ladder .....it clamped on the tip of thr Fly section & had 2 lengths of 3 1/2 with a gated siamese at the end....up & down motion was by 2 rope halyards ...side to side was by rotating the turntable .....all rotation had to be done slowly due to the weight of the charged lengths on the extended ladder.....according to FDNY evolutions 5 men were required to set it up.....we always did it with 2....it is an involved setup for the Fly pipe whereas the Bed pipe is basically in place .....a good thing about the Bed pipe was that if an aerial ladder rescue was being made from the floor above & fire blew out from below & water was started it would hit the bldg right above but not into the fire floor window & provide some protection to those on the ladder...i have pictures that i was given of us using the Fly pipe at a multiple in a big Church on Lafayette Av around Feb '69......it wasnt used often but it was used ....today ALL Aerial Ladders only carry the Fly pipe .....nfd is the fire on Waverly Av the factory around '79...i was in R*2 at that one it is also the last time i remember the Life Net being used..as a precation underneathe us....pictures in the last pages of Al Donchins book "First Due".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 06, 2010, 12:07:32 PM
.....nfd is the fire on Waverly Av the factory around '79...i was in R*2 at that one it is also the last time i remember the Life Net being used..as a precation underneathe us....pictures in the last pages of Al Donchins book "First Due".

  Yes Chief, I believe that was the fire. I have the book "First Due" and that is the picture. I'll remember that day myself, as it was one of the few times that I ever got pulled over by the NYPD. On the way to the fire, I made a "U" Turn. I think it was Delancy St in Manhattan and little did I know that one of NYPDs Finest was sitting right there. We could see the smoke and told the cop, that's where we were going. I remember telling the cop, we are firemen from Ct and Fire Buffs. After a verbal beating, he let us go.
  That goes back quite a few years Chief J.K. I had a guy with me who was also on the job in Connecticut. It was his "First visit". We caught a few jobs in the Bronx earlier, then the Fifth Alarm in Brooklyn. He got "hooked" and later joined me for many buff trips we made after that.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: E-211 on August 06, 2010, 09:12:11 PM
WOW Chief K,.... Second Bullseye  :o ;D :o

Fellas, Chief K is truly amazing. that's exactly how it happened !!!!! It's mind boggling to think that our paths crossed that night at R-2's.

I am also amazed that the "guy" in question made it to Dep. Chief  :o :o
I guess there IS a patron saint of second chances LOL   :D ;)

All in all,... what a night
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 07, 2010, 03:17:06 PM
Some ladder pipes in operation:      (you can click on these pictures after opening to magnify for better image)

(http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/7318/1950lp1.th.jpg) (http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/7318/1950lp1.jpg)  Manhattan Wanamaker Dept Store 7-14-56

(http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/3551/lp2v.th.jpg) (http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/3551/lp2v.jpg) Manhattan 5th Alarm 69 Greene St  2-21-57

(http://img812.imageshack.us/img812/108/lp4.th.jpg) (http://img812.imageshack.us/img812/108/lp4.jpg) WNYF What's New (13 ALFs) October 1960
(http://img812.imageshack.us/img812/6540/lp6.th.jpg) (http://img812.imageshack.us/img812/6540/lp6.jpg) WNYF What's New (13 ALFs) October 1960

(http://img267.imageshack.us/img267/7945/lp21e.th.jpg) (http://img267.imageshack.us/img267/7945/lp21e.jpg) Manhattan 9 alarms for a fabric warehouse Broadway and Grand 11-12-60

(http://img217.imageshack.us/img217/2376/lp20.th.jpg) (http://img217.imageshack.us/img217/2376/lp20.jpg)  Brooklyn 8 alarms for a warehouse 3-7-64

(http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/4239/lp13.th.jpg) (http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/4239/lp13.jpg) Manhattan 4th alarm for a loft E19 St  1965

(http://img812.imageshack.us/img812/1349/lp7.th.jpg) (http://img812.imageshack.us/img812/1349/lp7.jpg)  Manhattan Box 33-289  3-25-72

(http://img812.imageshack.us/img812/284/lp3.th.jpg) (http://img812.imageshack.us/img812/284/lp3.jpg)

 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: raybrag on August 07, 2010, 03:38:59 PM
Great pictures, Mack; thanks for posting.  In the Greene St photo, there is what appears to be a water tower behind the ladder using its ladder pipe . . . or am I seeing things?  If it is, it must have been one of the last multiple alarms for the tower . . . the last 2 were placed in reserve in 1957.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 07, 2010, 09:06:32 PM
Ray - It does appear to be a water tower.  Many pictures of the 1950s multiple alarms have a water tower operating.

The 6 water towers were disbanded in April 1957.  

They were located in 1957 at:  WT 1 - E 31, WT 2 - L 3, WT 3 - L 24, WT 4 - E 58, WT 5 - E 260, WT 6 - E 211.

Most were built in late 1890s.  Length 54 ft, width 7 ft, 8 in.  Mast extended to 65 ft.  1 or 2 nozzles.   Not many changes while in service for about 60 years (spring assist raising mechanism added in the 1930s, new tractors).

(http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/8966/wt1wg.th.jpg) (http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/8966/wt1wg.jpg) 1944 WNYF - 1903 picture

(http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/751/wt3t.th.jpg) (http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/751/wt3t.jpg)  1944 WNYF - 2 water towers at Manhattan loft 3rd alarm 1940s

(http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/7165/wt2.th.jpg) (http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/7165/wt2.jpg) 1955 WNYF
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: raybrag on August 07, 2010, 09:45:45 PM
Thanx again, Mack . . . great pictures.  Just one thing . . . I don't think it was Bloomberg in 1957.  Robert Wagner, wasn't it?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mercurygrandmarquis1 on August 07, 2010, 10:01:53 PM
Ray - It does appear to be a water tower.  Many pictures of the 1950s multiple alarms have a water tower operating.

Mayor Bloomberg disbanded the 6 water towers in April 1957.  

They were located in 1957 at:  WT 1 - E 31, WT 2 - L 3, WT 3 - L 24, WT 4 - E 58, WT 5 - E 260, WT 6 - E 211.

Most were built in late 1890s.  Length 54 ft, width 7 ft, 8 in.  Mast extended to 65 ft.  1 or 2 nozzles.   Not many changes while in service for about 60 years (spring assist raising mechanism added in the 1930s, new tractors).

(http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/8966/wt1wg.th.jpg) (http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/8966/wt1wg.jpg) 1944 WNYF - 1903 picture

(http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/751/wt3t.th.jpg) (http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/751/wt3t.jpg)  1944 WNYF - 2 water towers at Manhattan loft 3rd alarm 1940s

(http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/7165/wt2.th.jpg) (http://img261.imageshack.us/img261/7165/wt2.jpg) 1955 WNYF

i think you mean Mayor Wagner he was mayor from 1954 to 1965.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 07, 2010, 10:03:59 PM
Ray - I am pretty sure Mayor Bloomberg must have been responsible for the water towers being disbanded in 1957, even if he wasn't may yet.  I think he was also responsible for all the cutbacks in the 1970s.  Maybe he shut down E 17 in 1991.    

I actually put the line about Bloomberg in to see if anyone read the entry.  Thanks Ray.  
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: raybrag on August 08, 2010, 06:58:41 AM
Yeah, I understand.   Seems like the mayor's office has been wearing bloomers for far too long.  Saw in the paper the other day he's joining Bill Gates & Warren Buffett and giving away half of his billions.  I've got a suggestion for some of those billions . . . why not fund those FDNY companies he insists should be closed?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 08, 2010, 08:17:23 AM
I second the Thank you for Mister "Mack". I look at those pictures today, and it seems so antique to see those many ladder pipes and no Tower Ladders.
  Way back a few decades ago, like 1969/70, The Late Lt Richard Hamilton of Rescue 2 had gotten assigned to the Fire Acedemy due to an injury he recieved. So that's when I started buffing on my own. I picked Harlem because the streets were numbered and pretty easy to follow. Plus those Harlem companies were getting really busy. The first firehouse I found was Engine 58 and Ladder 26. I didn't have any unit location chart at the time. I would watch 58/26 do those many runs and sometimes catch a job. Ladder 26 was an American LaFrance Tiller. I loved watching that rig make those turns into the Harlem streets. What was even better was that Tower Ladder 14 (a first Tower Ladder for FDNY) was just put into service, and they caught work together with Ladder 26 in the "Hood". I hung out there until relocating a year or so later to the South Bronx after "Report from Engine 82" came out.
  Then I remember two tillers. Ladder 31 and Ladder 27, and No Tower Ladders. I hung out at both places. Engine 46/Ladder 27 had just gotten their new firehouse at the Cross Bronx Expressway and Washington Ave. Where the Bathgate Industrial Park is now, those square blocks was sure burning. From 170th St to the Cross Bronx, and from Park to Third Aves. There was plenty of activity just in that small area. As I remember seeing, Every single building in those blocks was burned out.  Later the Movie "Wolfen" was filmed there in that burned out area. Today it looks quite different from what it was then. That area was actually the first area to be rebuilt after the Arson Plagued South Bronx War Years.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on August 08, 2010, 10:25:03 AM
I was driving a covering DC one night who was assigned to E46-2 as a proby. He said when he got there most of the buildings around the firehouse were vacant. Driving around then you would see Con Ed digging up the streets and laying large diameter electric cables. He couldn't figure out why, the buildings weren't occupied. Low and behold the Bathgate Industrial Park came along. Somebody knew and I'm sure capitalized on the destruction.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 08, 2010, 12:40:39 PM
You're right John, I remember seeing ConEd working there too. Yeah, somebody knew, and somebody made some money. But honestly, if I was a gambling man at the time, I would have Never bet that the place would have worked out. Except for being close to I-95, the area was just such a diseaster that I was writing it off, and thinking that the devastation would just move to other areas. Two U.S. Presidents had toured the Charlotte St area with promises of rebuilding the South Bronx. I remember seeing as I drove south on the Sheriden Expressway a large painting at the top of some of those buildings. It said: "We Are Still Here". Among the burned out vacant shells that stood there for blocks, there were still people living in some of those buildings.
  Maybe 15-20 years later, the South Bronx was completely changed. It started with the Bathgate Industrial Park, then went to Charlotte St where there now stands several single family raised ranch houses. I think it was around 1989 when they talked of rebuilding that neighborhood. Now, no longer stand those six story partially occupied or vacant burned out multiple dwellings that lined those streets. Those burned out neighborhoods are now just memories. Sometimes I think it never really happened. But those fires DID HAPPEN. Someday, I would hope they make a movie about being a Firefighter in the South Bronx, or any other NYC Ghetto area that saw the same kind of action of those days. But the movie needs to tell the True story of what Great Firefighters these guys really were.
  They really are "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters".
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 08, 2010, 02:53:37 PM
  It would be nice to make a movie but hollywood will surely screw it up by making it a soap opera with phony hollywood fire (all flames, no smoke, firefighters standing straight up in the middle of a burning room, etc.). And they'll use a Crown Firecoach Snorkel and some other west coast apparatus.  Oh, oh don't get me started........ ::) :-X :( ??? ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on August 08, 2010, 05:48:50 PM
As far as sewers , elect , etc being installed in vacant areas the same thing happened in the "East New York Airport " area.....during the '60 s & 70 s a large expanse burned down hence the term you could land an airliner there......but in the early 80 s utilities were being installed & by the late '80 s .....sure enough tons of housing was put into place on every available lot.......somebody had plans.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on August 08, 2010, 06:10:27 PM
Some very nice shots.......the job on Broadway & Grand in '60 resulted in the deaths of 3 FF s who were trapped in the basement of this loft ....1 from SQ*8 & 2 from ENG*31.... RIP........the Greene St job reminds me of an old WNYF shot around that time that was titled "the Greene St twins".......2 lofts on opposite sides of the st.with seperate fires at the same time .......Lad Pipe & Deckpipe streams going both ways......anyone remember that ?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 13, 2010, 09:50:33 PM
There was an area of NYC that I don't think I ever mentioned. But the Engine and Truck there was doing as much work as those Busy Harlem, South Bronx, Brownsville or Bushwick Companies. It was Engine 28 and Ladder 11 and Battalion 4. It was the Lower East Side area, and at that time it closely resembled parts of the South Bronx. Only about one square mile, but sure a busy square mile. In the same area was Engine 17, and Ladder 18. Engine 17 was closed down I believe during the Fiscal Crisis in the mid 70s. But that Engine 17 was a busy working outfit.

  These companies are sometimes forgotten about when it comes to the very busy War Years for the FDNY. But the fires, the stories, and the neighborhood were very similiar to its bigger brother up there in Harlem or the South Bronx. They too, would go from run to run, or job to job. Hats off to the members that worked those very busy companies.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Lifeguard238 on August 13, 2010, 11:05:46 PM
Don't quote me, but I believe Engine 17 was shut down permanently in the mid 1980's. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on August 14, 2010, 02:02:41 AM
Dont forget SQUAD*5 who was in that area before being moved to ENG*41 in the Bronx........today ENG*15 is now in the Quarters of former ENG*17.......ENG*17...LAD*18..& BN*4 s old quarters as well as ENG*15 s are still standing.  SQUAD*5 had been scheduled to move to Pitt St from East Broadway.....but before that happened they went to the Bronx.............google LAD* 18 s Fort Pitt website for some history & old photos.........when i was a kid i lived not too far away....i remember blocks & blocks of vacants as some of the area was being leveled for projects.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on August 14, 2010, 09:17:15 AM
There was an area of NYC that I don't think I ever mentioned. But the Engine and Truck there was doing as much work as those Busy Harlem, South Bronx, Brownsville or Bushwick Companies. It was Engine 28 and Ladder 11 and Battalion 4. It was the Lower East Side area, and at that time it closely resembled parts of the South Bronx. Only about one square mile, but sure a busy square mile. In the same area was Engine 17, and Ladder 18. Engine 17 was closed down I believe during the Fiscal Crisis in the mid 70s. But that Engine 17 was a busy working outfit.

  These companies are sometimes forgotten about when it comes to the very busy War Years for the FDNY. But the fires, the stories, and the neighborhood were very similiar to its bigger brother up there in Harlem or the South Bronx. They too, would go from run to run, or job to job. Hats off to the members that worked those very busy companies.

The 'War Years' audio that was posted on this site a while back had some communications involving multiple jobs and no (or very few) units available to respond in that part of Manhattan.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on August 14, 2010, 10:17:00 AM
ENGINE 17 MANHATTAN

ORG. 91 Ludlow St. FQ Vol. (Sep. 17, 1865)
RELOC. (Aug. 20, 1879)
NQTRS. 91 Ludlow St. (Mar. 17, 1880)
NQTRS. 185 Broome St. W/ L-18 (May 1, 1939)
NQTRS. 25 Pitt St. W/ L-18 (Dec. 12, 1973)
DISB. (Jan. 3, 1991)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on August 15, 2010, 12:33:45 PM
In Peter A. Micheels book Braving the Flames there is a first-hand account from Fireman Dan DeFranco from Engine 17. If you ever wonder how busy those Lower East Side guys were, read that part. They were just as busy as some of those Ghetto Bronx or Brooklyn companies back in their the day.

They were doing 5,000 plus runs up until 1977.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 15, 2010, 02:21:01 PM
Thanks Andy, he wasn't lying when he says that. You could just about walk to the jobs on the Lower East Side. A small area with a lot of work. Streets like Ave "A", Ave "B", Rivington St, East 4th, East 5th etc.

  One time when the aydes epidemic hit this country, they did a documentary on the Lower East Side. As I watched that, they showed the vacant and burned out 5-6 story bricks lining the streets. It was all E28,17, Lad 11, and 18 area doing the work.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: E-211 on August 15, 2010, 07:19:10 PM
Is the old quarters of E-15 still standing ?   I have an old FDNY helmet from the 1920's from E-15 I found it at a fireman's muster back in 1977 at the Valhalla muster.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on August 15, 2010, 07:35:35 PM
Last I saw it was still there
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 16, 2010, 11:27:34 PM
Dont forget SQUAD*5 who was in that area before being moved to ENG*41 in the Bronx....  SQUAD*5 had been scheduled to move to Pitt St from East Broadway.....but before that happened they went to the Bronx.............

  I may need some help on this one. But when Squad 5 went to Engine 41, they became the Second Section of E 41. (Eng 41-2). Then the Second Section (41-2) was closed. After that, Engine 41 became "Enhanced Engine 41". They responded very similiar to what a Squad Co did to working fires in several battalion areas. Also they were given extra special equipment such as a hurst tool etc, which other engine companies didn't carry. It was very similiar to what we know of the Squads in use today, except for maybe the Haz Mat role.
  Just before "Enhanced Engine 41" there was an engine company that was supposed to be closed in Brooklyn, but the citizens took over the firehouse. It was called "The Peoples Firehouse" and as I understand it, the citizens held the firefighters hostage so they wouldn't close the firehouse. I think that's how the company became Squad 1, as it only responded to certain areas of that neighborhood after a deal was struck.
  One time I remember hearing the officer of "Enhanced Engine 41" calling themselves "Squad 41". The dispatcher quickly came back and said; "You are Enhanced Engine 41, not Squad 41". That was long before we know of the Squad 41 these days. I just guess the Officer was alittle ahead of his time.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 16, 2010, 11:53:24 PM
The Peoples Firehouse - Engine 212 - Williamsburg/Greenpoint

(http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/4636/e212.th.png) (http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/4636/e212.png)

http://www.nofirecuts.com/html/eng_212.html (http://www.nofirecuts.com/html/eng_212.html)

http://www.nydailynews.com/archives/ny_local/2004/02/12/2004-02-12_people_s_firehouse_tribute.html (http://www.nydailynews.com/archives/ny_local/2004/02/12/2004-02-12_people_s_firehouse_tribute.html)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 17, 2010, 12:02:27 AM
Thats the one "Mack". It was Engine 212. I couldn't remember which company it was. Now the question for anybody out there. What company became Squad 1, was it E 256 ? I just don't really remember, but Squad 1 came about from the closing of an Engine Company as best I remember. Something about they would only respond to their first alarm area ???? I'm just not sure, exactly what the deal was.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: lucky on August 17, 2010, 12:17:43 AM
That would be E 269.  E 256 wasn't too far away at DeKalb Ave and Ft. Greene Pl. across the street from Bklyn Tech High School
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: FDNY150 on August 17, 2010, 12:40:22 AM
Sq-1 responds as an Engine 1st due only.
Sq-5 was in the Bronx as Squad 5. I do remember hearing a tape with them responding to an incident in the South Bronx. I don't know if they were out of 41 or 73 at the time.
For all intents and purposes, 41 was a Squad back when they were the "Enhanced Engine". They didn't go further than 3rd due on anything, and responded to jobs in Harlem and certain battalions in the Bronx. They were a Squad, just nobody wanted to say it.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 17, 2010, 12:43:50 AM
Bill - According to Squad 1's web site - "Squad 1 was organized in Harlem at Engine 59 in 1955, moved to the Bronx at Ladder 58 in 1972, then to Engine 45 in 1975 and then disbanded in 1976. Squad 1 was re-established in 1977 in Brooklyn at the former quarters of Engine 269; which had been closed during the budget crisis."

Squad 1 going in service in 1955:
(http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/5516/scan0001nk.th.jpg) (http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/5516/scan0001nk.jpg)

Squad formed during WWII using 1930 Seagrave:
(http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/2544/scan0002emd.th.jpg) (http://img153.imageshack.us/img153/2544/scan0002emd.jpg)

Squad vans 1950s:
(http://img265.imageshack.us/img265/9594/scan0004xh.th.jpg) (http://img265.imageshack.us/img265/9594/scan0004xh.jpg)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 17, 2010, 12:56:48 AM
That would be E 269.  E 256 wasn't too far away at DeKalb Ave and Ft. Greene Pl. across the street from Bklyn Tech High School

  Thanks "lucky". That's right Eng 269. And just as a side note, way back around 1968 when I first got introduced to the FDNY and rode with Rescue 2, they were with Engine 210 on Carlton Ave. I remember going to calls, espically street pull boxes and seeing Engine 256 all the time as they were in the same neighborhood. That's when the guys hung on the back of the rig, holding onto those subway handles and wearing 3/4 boots, and a black fire coat. I think a pull box got three and two then. It had to change as the companies were getting really busy. They went down to two and two, with a third engine response on reciept of a second phone call.
  With that, things really started picking up and what we know now as "the War Years" were getting into full swing. At that point it almost became impossible to get 2 + 2 to respond to a street pull box. They were just to busy and the dispatcher would say "you're getting 1 + 1. Or sometimes they'd say, "you're going in on the box by yourself". It just got so busy as time went on. The fire dept was almost at the breaking point. It was the beginning of "My Younger Buff Years". Just a Historic Time to be a buff, or on the job.
  And Thanks "Mack" and "150", I just caught your post as I was finishing this.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on August 17, 2010, 01:02:10 AM
I could not find a squad unit formed in the 1940s on the historical list of all FDNY units.  WNYF reported in an article on Squads in 1970 that the first "squads" were three manpower units formed during World War II to address the manpower shortage due to the large number of firefighters in military service.  A unit was at Ladder 24.  E 20 and E 204 were converted to the other two manpower units.  They responded on assigned first alarm boxes in high hazard areas of Manhattan and Brooklyn.  They were disbanded in 1945.  

Major working schedule changes in the 1950s required additional manpower and Squads 1, 2, 3 and 4 were formed using 1938 Mack hose tenders.  Nine Squads were eventually formed and they used International vans or Chevy station wagons.  Apparatus later changed to 1960 Mack Pumpers for the 6 Squads operating at that time.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on August 17, 2010, 01:07:21 AM
You are posting faster than i can answer since i am on 3 sites at once....ok , here goes.....ENG*269 was disbanded in '75.. those members unfortunately went to the 4 winds....in '77 Ray Downey RIP 9-11 organized the BKLYN SQ*1 as the CPT....all the members were hand picked from applicants thruout the City...they only had 1st due boxes ...several BNs on the 10-75 & no bldg insp or hyd insp...also no haz mat till after 9-11.....they lost 11 members on 9-11.............ENG*41 in the BRONX was disbanded in '89.......I was one of the original Officers who organized SQ*41 on 7-1-90....there was a lot of political bullshit involved...koch was the mayor who closed ENG*41 & dinkins was the mayor who in his campaign said he would open it....when the time came they wanted more bang for their buck since the immediate area had slowed down from years past....the plan was to make it a SQUAD since R*3 was still in Manhattan.....when we interviewed the applicants from some of the busiest Co s in the JOB we told them 1st due boxes only 9 BNs on the 10-75 ...no bldg insp & no hydrant insp.....we got some great FFs w/time on the JOB.....however the community powers were not happy since most previous SQUADS were disbanded....they only wanted the ENGINE back.......the FD caved somewhat & did not call it a SQUAD but rather an ENHANCED ENGINE.....we had all the special equipt. but the term SQUAD was not allowed to be used on the Dept radio only on the Handie-Talkie.....some real political bullshit.....also we got 1 st 2nd & 3rd due boxes as an ENG contrary to what was originally said (if you were 2nd or 3rd due standing fast at some bullshit then you were missing jobs)....then we were given bldg insp & hyd insp (taking away from important drill time)...around '98 the FDNY was mandated to have a specific amount of HAZMAT backup units & more SQUAD were organized & SQUAD*41 was allowed to use their proper title .....on 9-11 all 5 FFs & the Officer were killed RIP.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on August 17, 2010, 02:03:26 AM
OK now you are asking the questions faster than i can set up another Bud & Jamoe....between reply 696 & my 702  i have a few more to answer.....maybe not in order asked but here goes....SQUAD*5 did operate as a SQUAD on 150 ST......ENG*212 was the peoples FH they held the rig & the FH hostage not the FFs it had nothing to do w/SQ*1.... there was a recent video post i am not sure what site ,of a rubbish fire extending to a scaffold next to 212 s former qtrs w/only LAD*104 on the scene w/no ENG....when ENG*41 was closed a local activist handcuffed himself to the suspension under the front of the rig...ESU cut the chain in the middle of the handcuffs.....the one end remained on the Green Mack when we had it....(thats another story..the community originally forced the FD to give us the Green '86 back instead of a newer '89..like i said another story for another time)...ENG*256 was mentioned...when i was a FF in R*2 256 was closed & a guy in the company said "lets buy the bldg it s only $125 grand"..we alll laughed at him...today spike lee owns it & its valued at 4 million.....on "FDNYforgotten" .."Blast from the Past".. forum i spoke about the gm stretch carryall (like connecticut limo used to run) that SQ*3 & the old community relations out of pier A used to run.....i havent gotten anyone to post any pictures yet...the comm rel rig was in an old whats new in WNYF....anybody ?...hope i answered everybodys questions..take care.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 17, 2010, 09:52:31 AM
...hope i answered everybodys questions..take care.

 Chief K., I can't speak for anybody else, but you sure filled in a lot of the blanks for me. Thank you. I was around when those things you mentioned took place. But I certainly didn't know about a lot of the details that went on behind the scene. Somehow I missed the story of the person hand cuffing himself to "41". But I do remember seeing "41" using that Green Mack, and it sure was overdue for replacement.
  And Thank you for the information on Eng 269 later becoming Squad 1. I'll have to check out the story on "FDNYforgotten", "Blast from the Past" regarding the old 256 qtrs. I've been on that site before. A lot of good info on FDNY, similiar to The Rant.
  Thanks to all who have helped supply this info. My memory was a little fuzzy with these details. And "Thanks Again for this Great Web Site".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 17, 2010, 10:34:16 AM
Did Dick Vizzini being a member of E41 have anything to do with why they were offered up for disbandment? ??? ::) ???
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on August 17, 2010, 11:05:14 AM
 I think moving E71 from Park Ave to Melrose Ave & 156 had more to do with it. I think Vizzini had been out for a while when they closed E41. My mind is fuzzy but I think when the house on Melrose was bulit it was originally lettered with Engine 41 and Ladder 55.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 17, 2010, 11:12:42 AM
I think moving E71 from Park Ave to Melrose Ave & 156 had more to do with it. I think Vizzini had been out for a while when they closed E41. My mind is fuzzy but I think when the house on Melrose was bulit it was originally lettered with Engine 41 and Ladder 55.
Yes it was lettered for E41, L55, BC26 and E41 was actually closer to it than E71 was.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: anesti on August 17, 2010, 12:14:31 PM
Did Dick Vizzini being a member of E41 have anything to do with why they were offered up for disbandment? ??? ::) ???

who is dick vizzini nd why would they close engine 41 for him??
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 17, 2010, 12:17:47 PM
He was a "Big" guy with the FF's Union ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on August 17, 2010, 12:25:18 PM
Did Dick Vizzini being a member of E41 have anything to do with why they were offered up for disbandment? ??? ::) ???

who is dick vizzini nd why would they close engine 41 for him??


This info might be of some help:

http://www.nytimes.com/2003/11/02/nyregion/city-lore-the-day-the-firemen-went-on-strike.html?pagewanted=all (http://www.nytimes.com/2003/11/02/nyregion/city-lore-the-day-the-firemen-went-on-strike.html?pagewanted=all)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: anesti on August 17, 2010, 12:45:05 PM
ahh ok i see ,very intresting.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on August 17, 2010, 12:53:32 PM
Willy D- leave Brooklyn to the people who know the Borough of Fire.  List of closed engine companies in Brooklyn: 203, 204, 208, 209, 212, 213, 215, 232, 244, 256, 269.  There were a couple in the 300 range that were double companies that were also closed; I believe one was in with 246 in their old house.  There might be more; please chime in.  Willy D's getting pretty old so all he can remember is history.  LOL!!    :o ;D :D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 17, 2010, 01:05:54 PM
  Yes, there was E326 at E245 that was formerly E245's 2nd section and E327 at E246 that was formerly E246's 2nd section. E326 was disbanded in 1952 to form a new E251 in Glen Oaks Queens and E327 was disbanded on July 16, 1960 which was the same day E246 & L169 moved from their old house on E. 23rd St. to their present home on E. 11th St.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on August 17, 2010, 03:11:38 PM
Vizzini was retired way before ENG*41 was closed.....i feel it had to do with the immediate area slowing down from what it had been & the proximity to ENG*71 s new qtrs as well as being close to ENG*60.......had this happened in a time period closer to the strike & had he still been an active member of the unit then i could possibly have seen that as a vindictive move......but that was not the case here........Certain other ENG s that were closed may have been a different story though.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on August 17, 2010, 04:01:17 PM
What units were in the Big House back in the day, in Jamaica?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: lucky on August 17, 2010, 04:34:14 PM
E275,E298,E299,L127,and BC50. There were very few, if any, boxes that all three engines responded together. E 275, who wound up in South Jamaicato the South, only responded to boxes North of the firehouse. E 299, who wound up in Fresh Meadows to the North, only responded to boxes South of the firehouse. E 298 responded both North and South.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 17, 2010, 04:42:27 PM
Talk about a crowded house? E275 and the chief came out of one bay E298, E299  & E299 wagon came out the middle bay, L127 had their own bay with a wall separating them from the hose haulers.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on August 17, 2010, 05:10:30 PM
SQUAD 1 MANHATTAN
ORG. 180 W. 137th St. At E-59 (Apr. 16, 1955)
NQTRS. 111 W. 133rd St. W/ E-59 (Nov. 1, 1962)

SQUAD 1 BRONX
RELOC. 451 E. 176th St. At L-58 (Nov. 22, 1972)
RELOC. 925 E. Tremont St. At E-45 (Oct. 31, 1975)
DISB. (May 1, 1976)

SQUAD 1 BROOKLYN
REORG. 786 Union St. FQ E-269 (Dec. 1, 1977)
RELOC. 395 4th Ave. At E-239 (Aug. 26, 2003)
RQTRS. 786 Union St. W/ TRV (Dec. 26, 2004)

SQUAD 2 BRONX
ORG. 659 Prospect St. At E-73 (Aug. 1, 1955)
DISB. (May 1, 1976)

SQUAD 3 BROOKLYN
ORG. 206 Monroe St. At E-235 (Nov. 16, 1955)
RELOC. 701 Park Ave. At E-230 (Jul. 8, 1966)
DISB. (Jul. 2, 1975)
REORG. 701 Park Ave. At E-230 (Jul. 19, 1975)
DISB. (May 1, 1976)

SQUAD 4 BROOKLYN
ORG. 107 Watkins St. At E-231 (Nov. 16, 1955)
RELOC. 214 Bristol St. At E-283 (Jan. 1, 1956)
NQTRS. 885 Howard Ave. W/ E-283 (Nov. 19, 1973)
DISB. (Jul. 2, 1975)
REORG. 885 Howard Ave. At E-283 (Jul. 4, 1975)
DISB. (May 1, 1976)

SQUAD 5 MANHATTAN
ORG. 340 E. 14th St. At E-5 (Apr. 1, 1959)
RELOC. 185 Broome St. At E-17 (Apr. 22, 1966)
RELOC. 269 Henry St. At E-15 (May 15, 1969)
RELOC. 55 East Broadway FQ E-9 (Jan. 10, 1970)

SQUAD 5 BRONX
RELOC. 330 E. 150th St. At E-41 (Jan. 19, 1974)
DISB. (Jul. 2, 1975)
REORG. 330 E. 150th St. At E-41 (Jul. 4, 1975)
DISB. (May 1, 1976)

SQUAD 6 MANHATTAN
ORG. 205 W. 77th St. At E-74 (Nov. 1, 1959)
RELOC. 120 W. 83rd St. FQ E-56 (May 1, 1960)
DISB. To Org. Ladder 59 (Nov. 24, 1972)

SQUAD 7 BROOKLYN
ORG. 136 Wythe Ave. At E-212 (Dec. 19, 1959)
RELOC. 43 Morgan Ave. At E-237 (Jul. 15, 1964)
DISB. To Org. Engine 232 (Jul. 8, 1966)

SQUAD 8 MANHATTAN
ORG. 243 Lafayette St. FQ R-1 (May 1, 1960)
RELOC. 87 Lafayette St. At E-31 (Nov. 1, 1961)
RELOC. 363 Broome St. At E-55 (Feb. 1965)
RQTRS. 87 Lafayette St. W/ E-31 (Apr. 1965)
DISB. (Apr. 22, 1966)

SQUAD 9 MANHATTAN
ORG. 159 E. 85th St. At E-22 (Jun. 17, 1961)
DISB. To Reorg. Engine 85 (Jul. 1, 1967)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on August 17, 2010, 05:13:52 PM
rdm....check out "1st Due Response Area" thread ..my reply #4 for more info on the "Big House".........& Lucky you are correct about the North & South responses.....it is odd how they flipped them when they moved.........Box 9876  Jamaica Av & 162 St. was the home box i dont think all 3 of the ENGs went to that either just 2.......anyone have an old card  ?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on August 17, 2010, 05:28:33 PM
In the SQUAD posting above BKLYN SQ*1 basically has been on Union St. the whole time the temporary reloc. to 239 in '03/'04 was to allow work to be done to qtrs. whereas  the other SQ reloc were tactical moves.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on August 17, 2010, 05:29:56 PM
  I have a bunch of 6000 series Little Neck & Douglaston cards from the 1930's to 40's. All show E298 relocating to E304 on the 2nd, E275 on the 3rd and E299 on the 4th. Both E275 and E299 got covered by E270 & E294 respectively. ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: rdm258 on August 17, 2010, 06:46:43 PM
Thanks "68jk09" read that post, great knowledge. Rob
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 24, 2010, 09:18:50 AM
My good friend, "Mikeindabronx" has advised me that he has posted more photos on his site. He now has added page 10. These are some of the very Best Photos of the FDNY in action during those very busy times. To view them go to www.fdnysbravest.com (http://www.fdnysbravest.com) .
  Thanks very much Mike. They're Great, and that's really putting it mildly. Your photos have preserved a very important part of the FDNY History.
  During those busy years, and while Mike was busy taking those pictures, I buffed the Bronx and Harlem with my good friend "Bxboro" (AKA Scott). That was some 30 years ago. I understand that his son has shown an interest in this Buffing Hobby. So he plans to introduce his son to the busy FDNY. Like Scott told me awhile back when we were talking about my father being on the job in Bridgeport, "the apple doesn't fall far from the tree". So too, Scott and his son.
  Scott is on the job in Connecticut and has a brother on a busy FDNY company.
  Looks to me like we are looking at three generations of FDNY buffing. Maybe soon his son will be writing "his" stories on "My Younger Buff Years".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1261Truckie on August 25, 2010, 01:53:06 PM
Went to the Bravest site and saw not only page 10 but page 11 of new "MikeindaBronx" photos. GREAT SHOTS !!!! Thanks, Mike
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on August 25, 2010, 11:58:08 PM
Went to the Bravest site and saw not only page 10 but page 11 of new "MikeindaBronx" photos. GREAT SHOTS !!!! Thanks, Mike

  Yes my friends it's true. Mike has posted page 11 (www.fdnysbravest.com (http://www.fdnysbravest.com)) of his Great photo Series. And to me, they are Priceless. Great job Mike and THANK YOU.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 02, 2010, 09:12:53 AM
From the early days of hanging out at Angie's Market across the street from 82/31, to the Cross Bronx at 46/27, to Clairmont Park, and the Webster Ave McDonalds, many of my friends who buffed the area became firefighters. Some have now retired. My brother George, Bill Bernhard, and Jim Sank spent several years on the job in Bridgeport, all have now retired. My buddy Zack H. is still on the job there.
  On the job in New London, Ct is my friend Jeff R. In Groton, Ct is Scott L., who also has a brother on a busy company in the Bronx. They all buffed the FDNY.
   Some in this group started buffing the busy 70s and 80s when they were young teenagers.
   They all buffed the FDNY and all learned from the very best out there. Some have been promoted to as high as a chiefs rank. There just wasn't any school out there where you could learn so much just by watching. Everything from the little tricks of the trade, to dealing with some of the worst ghetto conditions the world has seen. It was a total "across the board education". And those FDNY members were always willing to take the time to explain the job to us.
 Things we learned years ago, have recently started to show up. It was the FDNY that started painting squares on vacant buildings, with a "slash" or an "X" for fire damage. That was way back in the 70s. Today, that is common practice in many cities. But it was the FDNY that started that four decades ago.
  I am very Thankful that I was able to see and learn from what is "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters" the world has ever seen. 
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 03, 2010, 08:30:58 AM
I had a good friend who became an Auxiliary Firefighter with Engine 83/Ladder 29. In those days, Ladder 29 was a tiller. Also Satalite 2 was stationed there before going to its new home w/72. Later Ladder 29 got a Tower Ladder and that area was really burning. Streets like St Anns, Brook Ave, Cypress Ave and those 130's and 140's streets saw work all the time. I'm sure G-man can relate to what I'm talking about.
 I sure used to enjoy those two neighborhood Tower ladders, TL 17 and TL 29, giving those five brick vacants a dual attack. They'd knock down some heavy fire on five floors in no time. Maybe the response would be "two and two" and the battalion would go with a 10-30 signal. That ment 2 + 2, nothing else. For a five story brick building "fully involved". And there were a few times when they could only get 1 + 1 for that same kind of fire. Impossible to believe today, but TRUE.
  And as we all know, Ladder 29 is now a Rearmount. Several years ago Ladder 29s rearmount went to Ladder 50. I believe somebody covered that on another thread or earlier on this. Had something to do with the weight of a tower ladder crossing one of the bridges in 29s area.
  But that TL 17 and TL 29 sure caught their share in those days. Right G-man !!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on September 04, 2010, 05:09:52 AM
I just posted 53 photos on the "FDNYrant".......go to the Forum "Iron Lungs"......then to the new thread "Old Fire & or Rig Photos".......they are from the 50 s to the 80s.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on September 04, 2010, 08:29:56 AM
Chief.....great photos, thanks. Below is a link to the photos.

http://fdnyrant.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=history&action=display&thread=8424 (http://fdnyrant.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=history&action=display&thread=8424)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 04, 2010, 08:42:29 AM
Thanks very much Chief for advising us of those Great Pictures. I got home from my P/T job last night and was advised by my friend "mikeindabronx" of the pictures on the Rant. At that time there was maybe a dozen or so. I got up this morning, and see that Santa Clause had arrived early, and there were a total of "53 Photos" posted.

  Thanks very much Chief. And Thanks Mike for advising me, and helping us out to find those Great Photos on site.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 08, 2010, 10:00:59 PM
It was around 1975 and a few of my buddies were Boston Buffs. They are referred to as "Sparks" up there in Bean Town. And like most places then, Boston was catching its share of work. I had gone up there a few times with the guys, but I would ask my friends to make a trip and buff the FDNY with me. I told them its busy and we are sure to catch a few jobs. But for some reason, they would just Never want to go. It was almost the same distance from Norwich (our area), to Boston or NYC.
  Finally, after much talk, I finally got two of them to go. At the time I was spending most of my NYC buffing time in Brooklyn. We would take the Williamsburg Bridge to Broadway and follow that out to Koskeosko St (spelling ????) where we would hang out at a McDonalds. As soon as we got there a job came in for Evergreen and Gates (?) in a row of attached frames. These were very common in Bushwick. The fire quickly spread across the entire cockloft. But in those days, an entire city block of row frames with heavy fire in the cockloft, might only get a second alarm assignment. And that's exactly what they got. That was about 10 AM. As the day went on, the radio traffic got busier. I remember telling my buddy; "just write down the box numbers". It would get so busy, you couldn't write down the address of the fire. I think we caught about seven jobs that day. Of course there were more throughout Brooklyn, but thats what we took in. In addition, on the way home we caught a job in Bridgeport. "After that, they were sold". I don't think they went back to Boston too many times after that. Although Boston was certainly catching it, I think my friends had found a new hangout in Bushwick/Bed Sty.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on September 08, 2010, 10:37:36 PM
nfd2004 aka "Willy D" - this thread is now 49 pages, and eveywhere you go you eat McDonald's!!!! If I had know about this earlier, I would have bought stock in Mickey D's and I'd be rich.
 :D :D ;D :D :D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 08, 2010, 10:50:18 PM
nfd2004 aka "Willy D" - this thread is now 49 pages, and eveywhere you go you eat McDonald's!!!! If I had know about this earlier, I would have bought stock in Mickey D's and I'd be rich.
 :D :D ;D :D :D

  Well Kevin, it's Never too late to invest some money. 49 pages is a lot of McDonalds. Here's another Hot Tip, invest in Dunkin Donuts too. I spend a lot of time there also. (And sorry to say, it shows).
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on September 08, 2010, 11:05:30 PM
You forgot White Castle? ??? ;D ;D ;D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on September 08, 2010, 11:28:23 PM
I don't know Bill but the last time we met in DaBronx it was Wendy's.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 08, 2010, 11:53:45 PM
I think we're supposed to be talking about "Our Younger Buffing Years", not about food. So if we could get back to talking about those Tower ladders, The Jobs, etc, instead of those Big Macs, White Castle Burgers, and Wendy's Chocolate Shakes etc, I'm sure those Moderators would be very happy.
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on September 09, 2010, 05:58:44 AM
Some excellent additions by 811 to the "OLD FIRES & OR RIG PHOTOS"   .......link to same in reply # 729 above.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 09, 2010, 06:26:42 PM
Some excellent additions by 811 to the "OLD FIRES & OR RIG PHOTOS"   .......link to same in reply # 729 above.

  Thanks Chief for the "Heads Up on those Photos". And Thanks to "811" for posting them. They sure are Great. I hope the guys on here check them out.
  I sure enjoy reading the RANT. Espically the "Iron Lungs Section". Some of you guys have some Great Stories to tell. Everytime I think about some of them, I sit here laughing to myself. There's been a few. I know one thread was on Firehouse Pets (I think). Laughed my A$$ off. Real Classics !!! Also plenty of History of some of FDNYs Busiet Days.
  I certainly don't want to take anything away from this site. Of course, you can probadly tell, "its my favorite". I don't really write much on the Rant because I feel it belongs more to the FDNY Members. Of course my good friend, "Mikeindabronx" writes on it once in a while, but I think he really kind of deserves that right. He spent a lot of time with those Bronx and Harlem Members. He sure knows them all.
  So thanks for passing that onto us, and I enjoy reading the many stories of the guys that were there as it happened.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 17, 2010, 08:14:08 PM
Those 30 or 40 years ago, during the Busy War Years, and even into the 80s, things were just so different then. Its hard to believe for maybe anybody that wasn't around to see it. There were no computers in the rigs or in the firehouse. Pull boxes and ERS Boxes were throughout the city. No bunker gear, just rubber coats and 3/4 rubber boots. Riding the back step was the everyday scene. And the FDNY was one of the first to actually use 1 3/4 hose, replacing the more common 1 1/2 hose.
  Riding with a company was a pretty normal thing for a buff. As long as you were a decent guy, they welcomed you into the firehouse and asked you to ride. Just a Great time to be around and plenty of action to follow. Sometimes so much that it was tough to keep up with it. At times it was so busy that we would only listen to one boro and one of us would have to write down the boxes. If it was a job, we just looked up the location in the Box Location Book. I think there was a group called "The Third Alarm Asso", and thats where I got my first Box Book from.
  At the time I guess you could say I was "young and stupid". Sometimes watching the job from the street wasn't always what I did. I sometimes went to the roof of an exposure to watch those truckies make the cuts with those saws and watch the others pull up the wooden roof area. Then push the hooks down through the plaster to open it up. Or sometimes I'd be right in the hallway just a few feet from the forcible entry team as they attacked the door locks with halligan and a flathead axe. Then the line would move in and I could hear the water hitting the ceiling. Some occupants would still be coming down the interior stairs.
I guess I was just lucky that I never got hurt or worse. I learned a lot from watching but I certainly wouldn't do it today. The FDNY was always very good to me with my buffing thing. And I have a feeling they kept a close eye on me while I watched them perform. I guess kind of like a "Guardian Angel".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: anesti on September 17, 2010, 08:27:12 PM
a sonic needs to be opened in the bronx so we can eat,be in the car and have the engine running for a head start.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on September 17, 2010, 08:43:44 PM
Bill....I can definitely relate to getting in to jobs first due. Also spent a lot of time in fire buildings as well as on the roofs. The one thing you did not do was leave the company you were riding with and go to another job you heard on you radio. That was a no no as far as I'm concerned.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 17, 2010, 09:41:38 PM
Yeah Mike, you can relate to what I'm talking about. And your right about not leaving the company that you are riding with. I got to tell you, my very first night with Rescue 2 and the Great Late Lt Hamilton, we caught a second alarm in one of those Brooklyn 3 story row frames. I was about 18 years old and Lt Hamilton told me to follow him. We went up the interior stairway in exp 2 which was attached. One guy was carrying the saw. We got onto the roof of the fire building and Lt Hamilton told me to hold onto the guys coat while he was sawing the roof. He also had me hold a light for him. They let me wear FDNY gear and Nobody had air packs on. The smoke was brutal. Every once in awhile a breeze would blow the smoke and I could see a bucket of a tower ladder. At that time it was probadly one of FDNYs very first Tower Ladders. I can't tell you how I wanted to go for that bucket, get down, and get fresh air. When the fire was knocked down, I got a few strange looks from one of the chiefs. Next thing I know, the chief is calling Lt Hamilton a side. I can guess the rest.
  Mikeindabronx web site (www.fdnysbravest.com (http://www.fdnysbravest.com)) as most of us already know has some Great Photos, including roof shots and shots in the public hallways. I can relate to those photos from my buffing days. I saw what he photographed. I'm just really glad he was around with a camera and got the "Official Word" to take those historic pictures. I'm sure glad he has saved in photos a very busy historic time for the FDNY.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on September 19, 2010, 02:33:52 PM
Just wondering 'mikeindabronx', did you need special permission to take your shots, or were you just buffing and got as close as possible?

Cause your shots, are epic.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on September 19, 2010, 03:21:39 PM
Yes I had permission from HQ to ride with 69/28 & BN-16 (Harlem Hilton). At that time 69/28,80/23 & 37/40 were in the 16th. The 16th   was part of Div-5. which was located in the quarters of 80/23.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: dillondotcom on September 21, 2010, 11:20:15 PM
I have said it before...I would give anything to have been on the job back then.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1261Truckie on September 24, 2010, 02:42:06 PM
Had a story to share with "youse guys".
Sometime late in 1969 (I think) there was a job with multiple fatalities at Brooklyn Box 681 (again I think it was 681, I know it was in that area). It was on a bitter cold night (Maybe Chief JK would remember this one). As I remember, the initial alarm came in around midnight.
L-132, normally 4th alarm truck, was special called as were several other trucks because both 1st due & 2nd due trucks went to the hospital as a result of their efforts trying to rescue the victims. Both of those companies really tried.
Anyway, as the operation wore on, everyone at the scene was trying hard to stay warm with little or no success. This was way before transit authority buses were called to the scene and for some reason the Salvation Army van did not respond. Sometime around 5 AM the chief in charge released E-235 to return to their quarters. They took up and left.
About a half hour later, just as the first light of dawn was appearing, some of us in the street saw a engine approaching the scene (no lights or siren). The chief jokingly asked his aide "Did we special call anyone?" and the aide said "No".
With that 235 pulled up in front of the building with hot coffee and pastries that they had purchased from a local bakery. They had gone back to their house, brewed several pots of coffee, found the bakery getting ready to open and then returned to the scene with goodies for the troops. They would not accept any donations, all this was out of their pockets.
Needless to say, anytime 235 needed a hand with anything at all, they got it. That's what brotherhood is about.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on September 24, 2010, 03:00:37 PM
Great story, thanks for sharing it.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on September 24, 2010, 03:36:31 PM
Yes Jimmy (1261 Truckie), that's what Brotherhood is all about. The members really took care of each other. There was No Other Group of people that was a "Tighter Group" than the members of the FDNY during those very busy War Years. And as busy as they were, they actually had pity for firefighters that worked in slower depts.
  That was one of the Greatest things about being on the job then. I could see that from my outside view looking in. The term Brotherhood, I guess got its start with those Great Firefighters. In any way, shape, or form, they really were "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters". Every one of them, "A Role Model to todays, and Future Firefighters".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 03, 2010, 12:40:25 PM
I was recently advised about more Great War Year Photos. I greatly appreciate that, so that we all can view them. Some in particularly that I remember. The picture of the Brooklyn Tin House. My buddy and I spent one night riding with Eng 232, and Lad 176. A Great group of guys. The picture of Ladder 40 with "Life begins at 40" written on the front. (Remember that Mike ! ). The Red/White/Blue rigs painted for the Bi-Centennial (1976) celebration. It also happened to be one of the Busiest Years for fires in the FDNY History. And there may even be a few faces that some of us might recognize.

  I'm just glad there were people out there that were willing to photograph and preserve this time in history. Guys like "Doyleimages", and "Mikeindabronx" (www.fdnysbravest.com (http://www.fdnysbravest.com)). Your Work is Greatly Appreciated. And for those that fought the fires during this very busy time, YOU REALLY ARE, "The GREATEST GENERATION of FIREFIGHTERS". You did one hell of a job under some of the Worst conditions that ever existed.

  Go to http://doyleimages.smugmug.com/FDNY/Misc-FDNY/11857090_MdgEJ#838534458_MKje5 (http://doyleimages.smugmug.com/FDNY/Misc-FDNY/11857090_MdgEJ#838534458_MKje5)

   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on October 03, 2010, 04:32:21 PM
Excellent Photos in reply # 749 above by doyleimages.....i would like to comment on a few.....#11 job on Queens Blvd & 71 Rd. ENG*305 s '68 Mack w/Rescue type front & crew cab seating..several of these around then.....#16 FF Glen Harris R*2.....#17 R*2s '76 Mack door handpainted by Jon Thomas RIP......#29 LAD*119 Sutphen TL w/pumps (that were never used except to augment an Eng supplied feed line , LAD*14 had one also....after awhile LAD*14 got a Mack & 119 had both Sutphen s in qtrs one as regular rig & 1 as a spare only for their use......# 31 R*2 Lt. J. Vigiano..FF s Lee Ielpi..Glen Harris ..Rich Evers....# s 35 & 36 TL*1 w/ original '65 Mack T.L..... # 38 119 s Sutphen again......# 40 LAD*108 s '74 Seagrave a victim of the "Diesel Fuel Demons" who torched bldgs in Williamsburg in the mid to late 70s this was a large vacant factory on Union Av & Lynch St. that took off unexpectedly.......# 41 another shot of 108 s rig......# 45 R*2 Jon Thomas RIP & Jack Kleehaas w/torch......# 59 Multiple in the Gasolene Tank Farms in Greenpoint around '79 white coat is Francis Cruthers (Frank s Father) who was Chief Of Dept at the time old Foam Cannon at his feet....lots of foam was used ,Foam unit deckpipe as well as several foam handlines & a very graphic example of why you approach burning tankers from the sides when the end of 1 blew out ..fittings, its meter etc flying like large shrapnel........# 86 R*2 s '76 Mack.....# 97 disbanded LAD*171 that had been quartered w/ENG*329......# 121 R*2 FF Larry Weston..Bob Athanas Disp at the time now Senior Man R*3....FF Pete Bondy....& w/camera a good friend Artie O'Leary career FF ...NY Fire Patrol....Hartford Conn, & then Boston Mass. for many years until his untimely death at age 57 RIP Artie.......# 138 ENG*234 transp w/rig ..done a lot before todays EMS.....# 142..LAD*173 s '76 Bicentenial paint job on their '68 American LaFrance......# 146 108 before burning up at another job....# 155 a sad picture of the TIN HOUSE after it was padlocked ...PD & Marshalls cars posted outside..note the TIN HOUSE PLAZA St scene mentioned in the TIN HOUSE thread ......#157 Pat Brown R*2 RIP 9-11 doing CPR.....#158 119s Sutphen again....#161 good shot of "piggybacked portables".....# 187 shot of older LAD*40 w/plywood cover over cab of a MACK Tiller...# 198 R*2 FFs Rich Evers ..Al Washington..Jack Kleehaas..Al Stienhardt....# 202 disbanded ENG*212...Real FDNY History.


Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: fdce54 on October 03, 2010, 06:29:18 PM
Photo #80, Is that Donovan's Pub that TL163 is working on? The location is 58 St and that looks like the steel structure of the elevated subway on Roosevelt Ave..
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 04, 2010, 08:39:42 AM
Photo #80, Is that Donovan's Pub that TL163 is working on? The location is 58 St and that looks like the steel structure of the elevated subway on Roosevelt Ave..

  Frank, "you got one hellava Eye there". It sure looks like Donovan's to me. If I was a betting man, I'd put my money on you.

  And I would really like to thank Chief "68jk09" for taking the time to describe many of those other photos. I consider us to be pretty lucky to have people like Chief "68jk09", and a few others like "69mets", "Turk182" and "******" (Capt of E 82 during the War Years) who have spent their time on some of the busiest FDNY Companies, and are willing to take the time to contrubute to this thread. "You were there". Great job, and THANK YOU.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 05, 2010, 07:58:23 PM
A typical South Bronx job during the War Years. Looks like they'll put "Two and Two" to work on this one. Just a vacant building.
                     http://fdnysbravest.com/fp267.htm (http://fdnysbravest.com/fp267.htm)
  Thanks to "mikeindabronx" for this photo.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on October 05, 2010, 08:20:12 PM
Excellent Photos in reply # 749 above by doyleimages.....i would like to comment on a few.....#11 job on Queens Blvd & 71 Rd. ENG*305 s '68 Mack w/Rescue type front & crew cab seating..several of these around then.....#16 FF Glen Harris R*2.....#17 R*2s '76 Mack door handpainted by Jon Thomas RIP......#29 LAD*119 Sutphen TL w/pumps (that were never used except to augment an Eng supplied feed line , LAD*14 had one also....after awhile LAD*14 got a Mack & 119 had both Sutphen s in qtrs one as regular rig & 1 as a spare only for their use......# 31 R*2 Lt. J. Vigiano..FF s Lee Ielpi..Glen Harris ..Rich Evers....# s 35 & 36 TL*1 w/ original '65 Mack T.L..... # 38 119 s Sutphen again......# 40 LAD*108 s '74 Seagrave a victim of the "Diesel Fuel Demons" who torched bldgs in Williamsburg in the mid to late 70s this was a large vacant factory on Union Av & Lynch St. that took off unexpectedly.......# 41 another shot of 108 s rig......# 45 R*2 Jon Thomas RIP & Jack Kleehaas w/torch......# 59 Multiple in the Gasolene Tank Farms in Greenpoint around '79 white coat is Francis Cruthers (Frank s Father) who was Chief Of Dept at the time old Foam Cannon at his feet....lots of foam was used ,Foam unit deckpipe as well as several foam handlines & a very graphic example of why you approach burning tankers from the sides when the end of 1 blew out ..fittings, its meter etc flying like large shrapnel........# 86 R*2 s '76 Mack.....# 97 disbanded LAD*171 that had been quartered w/ENG*329......# 121 R*2 FF Larry Weston..Bob Athanas Disp at the time now Senior Man R*3....FF Pete Bondy....& w/camera a good friend Artie O'Leary career FF ...NY Fire Patrol....Hartford Conn, & then Boston Mass. for many years until his untimely death at age 57 RIP Artie.......# 138 ENG*234 transp w/rig ..done a lot before todays EMS.....# 142..LAD*173 s '76 Bicentenial paint job on their '68 American LaFrance......# 146 108 before burning up at another job....# 155 a sad picture of the TIN HOUSE after it was padlocked ...PD & Marshalls cars posted outside..note the TIN HOUSE PLAZA St scene mentioned in the TIN HOUSE thread ......#157 Pat Brown R*2 RIP 9-11 doing CPR.....#158 119s Sutphen again....#161 good shot of "piggybacked portables".....# 187 shot of older LAD*40 w/plywood cover over cab of a MACK Tiller...# 198 R*2 FFs Rich Evers ..Al Washington..Jack Kleehaas..Al Stienhardt....# 202 disbanded ENG*212...Real FDNY History.

I didn't realize that Bob had been a Disp. I've known him since he was with E-42 (Yellow). Stopped by R-3 last week and he was working,hadn't seen him in over a year.   http://fdnysbravest.com/fp85.htm (http://fdnysbravest.com/fp85.htm)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on October 05, 2010, 08:27:59 PM
A typical South Bronx job during the War Years. Looks like they'll put "Two and Two" to work on this one. Just a vacant building.
                     http://fdnysbravest.com/fp267.htm (http://fdnysbravest.com/fp267.htm)
  Thanks to "mikeindabronx" for this photo.

Gotta love the old 10-30's.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on October 05, 2010, 08:40:51 PM

"I didn't realize that Bob had been a Disp. I've known him since he was with E-42 (Yellow). Stopped by R-3 last week and he was working,hadn't seen him in over a year."   http://fdnysbravest.com/fp85.htm (http://fdnysbravest.com/fp85.htm)




Bob was an excellent dispatcher in Brooklyn prior to being appointed to the job. Great guy and a great Fireman.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on October 05, 2010, 08:46:35 PM
Photo #80, Is that Donovan's Pub that TL163 is working on? The location is 58 St and that looks like the steel structure of the elevated subway on Roosevelt Ave..

  Frank, "you got one hellava Eye there". It sure looks like Donovan's to me. If I was a betting man, I'd put my money on you.

  And I would really like to thank Chief "68jk09" for taking the time to describe many of those other photos. I consider us to be pretty lucky to have people like Chief "68jk09", and a few others like "69mets", "Turk182" and "******" (Capt of E 82 during the War Years) who have spent their time on some of the busiest FDNY Companies, and are willing to take the time to contrubute to this thread. "You were there". Great job, and THANK YOU.

Thanks Bill. I was fortunate to be broken in by great Firemen from the 'War Years' as well as to have '68jk09' as a Lieutenant. I'm very thankful, I led a 'charmed existence' when I was on the job ...
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on October 05, 2010, 09:08:37 PM
Mike....69Mets=great guy.......Bob also & the LT. in your ENG*42 shot was someone i graduated from both Grammar School (PS 97) & Proby School with.....as always Great shots ...Thanks.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 06, 2010, 09:08:36 AM
Gotta love the old 10-30's.
[/quote]

  Mike, maybe you or a few others might remember this. Way back then, a working fire was referred to as a "Signal 30". That was before the use of 10 codes. A "Signal 18" would be using 1/1. Later the 10 was added. Also the 10-75 did NOT exist. That came about during the War Years to request a Third Due Engine. It was during a lot of changes taking place for the FDNY. The DRB (Discretionary Response Box) became a norm, where the chief did Not have to respond.  Adaptive Responses went into effect, elimnating the previous normal response of 3/2. TCUs (Tactical Control Units) were manned during the busiest time of day for fires. And pull boxes were being replaced with the newer ERS (Emergency Reporting Boxes) where it was hoped the caller would talk to the Fire Dispatcher, cutting down on the numerous false alarms from pull boxes. ERS, "No Contact", sent those busy Engine Companies to just as many false alarms, if not more than the pull boxes.
  During the mid 70s, the numbers for fires and false alarms were "Staggerring".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 13, 2010, 11:17:07 PM
Here's where it all starts. More images here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/12533995@N02/sets/72157603941305234/ (http://www.flickr.com/photos/12533995@N02/sets/72157603941305234/)
    I was going through some of Franks photos (FD347). They are all Great. But one in particular caught my eye. It's actually a sign. It says "Your scanner has stopped at KCB 525. The Hot Spot on your dial" "Brooklyn Fire Radio". How true that was. In those busy War Years, it was Impossible to scan any more than one Boro at a time. They were just so busy during those War Years.
  If I was home listening to the scanner, Brooklyn was always my favorite. They were just so busy and never missed a beat. Sometimes they would announce three or four boxes in rapid succession. It was like you turned on an AM or FM radio with constant talking. Those dispatchers were really the Greatest.
  And here's a story that I heard from one of them who is now retired. He said that he would write down the box numbers that came in on a piece of paper, but was so busy that he never got a chance to put them out. He'd find the paper in his pocket when he got home. My point is that it was just so busy, even the Worlds Best Dispatchers had trouble keeping up with it. And whether it was Brooklyn, Manhattan or The Bronx, 3 AM or 3 PM, there was little "Off the Air" time in those days.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on October 16, 2010, 10:48:24 PM
What happened to  the doyleimages photos ?......when the link opens the site says no photos available yet.....these were some great history shots.......anybody know what happened ?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 17, 2010, 08:01:25 AM
What happened to  the doyleimages photos ?......when the link opens the site says no photos available yet.....these were some great history shots.......anybody know what happened ?
Chief JK, those pictures "ARE GREAT". I tried it and noticed the same thing happen. But then I clicked on the Top Left, where it says "Doyleimages" and many photos showed up. There were alot of those photos under seperate photo galleries. For some reason they just are not together.
  I just don't understand it why they don't show up as orginally posted. Espically after explaining many of those photos. I just don't understand it.

  And I need to make a correction to one of my earlier post regarding the sign about Brooklyn Fire Radio. It is "KEB525", NOT "KCB525". I heard that so many times in the years past. How did I ever mess that up ??????
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on October 17, 2010, 09:30:35 AM
Quote
 And I need to make a correction to one of my earlier post regarding the sign about Brooklyn Fire Radio. It is "KCB525", NOT "KEB525".

Still backwards!   It was KEB-525.   Incidentally, FDNY has numerous licenses for 154.37Mhz and for each of its other FD frequencies.   There's a separate license for each transmitter location.   Brooklyn is currently using KYE-994, which is licensed to 35 Empire Blvd.  Callsign KEB-525 is assigned to a backup xmtr. over at the Brooklyn Museum on Eastern Parkway.  

We gave out that callsign (albeit incorrectly) for years.  I think that usage was a carry-over from the days of the "green monster", when the radio console at Empire Blv'd. was connected via a land-line link to the transmitter at the museum. Link to FD347 photo:  Colin O'Connor at Brooklyn Radio c. 1970 (http://www.flickr.com/photos/12533995@N02/4984977772/#)

BTW... Years ago there was a "buffmobile" cruising the streets of Brooklyn with license plate # KEB-525.  Never found out who that was.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 17, 2010, 12:14:23 PM
Thanks there "bklyndisp54". I corrected it for like the THIRD TIME. Sorry to ALL. I know it as good as my name. It actually was KEB525, and NOT KCB525. Sorry ! ! !
  I even got a "PM" from "69Mets" when I first made the mistake. He was trying to help me out with the right call sign. I still messed up. "I need to take a little more Geritol, and lay off "The Hard Stuff".
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on October 17, 2010, 12:45:59 PM
For some members who might not be familiar with what NYC neighborhoods looked like in the 1970s-80s:

S.Bronx 1970s (FDNY responses 3 minutes into video):
New York Bronx (South Bronx) in the 70`s and 80`s (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AtI-En92Xso&feature=player_embedded#)

Bushwick 1970s (Lt Carritue - posted before):
Ron Carritue and the Bushwick Firestorm Years (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4PuIy0pf2A#)

Bushwick 1970s (NBC TV Report - gangs):
Bushwick Brooklyn (70s) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cEG3btn3dQM&feature=related#ws)

S. Bronx 1970s (John Finucane - posted before):
When the Bronx Was Burning: Firefighter John Finucane on the Bronx of the 1970's (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fhOjRoPN4U#ws)

S. Bronx 1970s (Bronx Burning - posted before)
The Bronx is Burning S2.wmv (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQ6FZ_21lm4&feature=related#)
FDNY The Bronx is Burning 3 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bpUTGHvWdz8&NR=1#)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 17, 2010, 01:59:16 PM
Wow ! Thanks very much Mack for posting those videos. I think its espically good now as those attending the member meeting will see quite a differnt place from what it was in those days. Where single family raised ranch houses are now, were once the scene of blocks of vacant, or partially occupied burned out six story brick MDs.
  Thanks Mack, I sure appreciate that.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on October 17, 2010, 02:12:29 PM
This video reflects the devastation of the previous decade, not the late 1970' and 80's. Beginning as early as 1962, the area bordered by the Bronx Kills and Long Island Sound on the south, the Bronx River on the east, Park and Webster Aves on the west, and 180th Street on the north, was the location. It included Mott Haven, Morrisania, Longwood, Hunts Point, Melrose, and Tremont neighborhoods. It was the heaviest fire duty ever experienced by the FDNY (sorry Brooklyn, Harlem, and the Lower East Side, just look up the runs and workers for the years 1962 to 1974). By 1975, with literally nothing left to burn and people moving to Co-op City, the west Bronx became the epicenter, but it never saw the conflagrations of the 3d, 14th, 17th, 18th, 26th and 27th Battalions in the 60's and early 70's. These were the real War Years.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on October 17, 2010, 03:45:08 PM
This video reflects the devastation of the previous decade, not the late 1970' and 80's. Beginning as early as 1962, the area bordered by the Bronx Kills and Long Island Sound on the south, the Bronx River on the east, Park and Webster Aves on the west, and 180th Street on the north, was the location. It included Mott Haven, Morrisania, Longwood, Hunts Point, Melrose, and Tremont neighborhoods. It was the heaviest fire duty ever experienced by the FDNY (sorry Brooklyn, Harlem, and the Lower East Side, just look up the runs and workers for the years 1962 to 1974). By 1975, with literally nothing left to burn and people moving to Co-op City, the west Bronx became the epicenter, but it never saw the conflagrations of the 3d, 14th, 17th, 18th, 26th and 27th Battalions in the 60's and early 70's. These were the real War Years.
  You are so right, 3511, AMEN!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on October 17, 2010, 04:12:09 PM
DaBronx never loses it's reputation...

– Fri Oct 15, 3:58 am ET

MELBOURNE (AFP) – An Indian student leader in Australia Friday slammed a new Bollywood film based on race attacks in Melbourne, saying it was an unfair portrayal of the city and its inhabitants.

"Crook: It's Good to be Bad", was "definitely inaccurate" and poorly researched, said Gautam Gupta, spokesman for the Federation of Indian Students in Australia.

"It's definitely an inaccurate description of Melbourne -- this is not The Bronx," Gupta told AFP.

The movie, which comes after a furore over hundreds of assaults on Indian students in Melbourne and Sydney, shows a series of violent race crimes by Australians, along with song-and-dance routines.

"With the level of crime and the motivation behind crime that it shows, the reflection is that the streets are filled with it," Gupta said. "But I think that's not the case and we have definitely moved on from there."

Officials also objected to suggestions that people in Melbourne, capital of Victoria state, were racist.

"We are not racist here in Victoria," state Police Minister James Merlino told the Herald-Sun newspaper. "In fact it is absolutely completely the contrary. We are one of the most diverse societies in the world."

A wave of muggings, robberies and assaults prompted protests in Melbourne and Sydney last year and a howling response by Indian media, which carried widespread allegations of racism.

The row strained diplomatic relations and damaged Australia's lucrative overseas education industry, which attracts hundreds of thousands of Asian students.

But Gupta said new anti-hate crime legislation and an initiative to recruit more police had helped calm tensions.

"The police and the government have woken up finally and the authorities are taking some concrete action," he said. "So from that point of view it's different to a year back."

Indian reviewers have also been lukewarm on "Crook", accusing it of failing to properly tackle a complex issue.

"In trying to do a ferocious flag-waving trick over the complex issue of racism and colour prejudice, ?Crook? ends up making the Australian population look like a bunch of psychotic killers," said the Calcutta Tube website.

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: BritishAndy on October 19, 2010, 05:29:58 PM
Hi Guys....
Sorry if this has been covered before, but can anyone help with additional information, photos or memories of a 10 alarm (?) fire which was in a large disused commerical warehouse which collapsed onto the quarters of Rescue One? I think it was around 1985.

Many thanks
Andy
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on October 19, 2010, 06:32:01 PM
A verbal alarm was transmitted from the quarters of Rescue 1 at 7:26 evolved into a 10-alarm fire in the largest single-building fire since 1967. This fire went to 10 alarms on a freezing night of January 23, 1985. The eight story 125 x 90 Wiesner piano factory @ 524 W 43 st burned out of control for over 3 hours. The north wall collapse destroyed Rescue-1 quarters.  There is an outstanding photo from John Lee Gill showing three members from FDNY in a tower ladder looking into the gates of hell.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on October 19, 2010, 08:36:44 PM

http://fdnysbravest.com/fp38.htm (http://fdnysbravest.com/fp38.htm)

This would be looking West from 10th to 11th Ave. R-3 would have been on the South side right past the fire building.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Lifeguard238 on October 20, 2010, 12:26:22 AM
A verbal alarm was transmitted from the quarters of Rescue 1 at 7:26 evolved into a 10-alarm fire in the largest single-building fire since 1967. This fire went to 10 alarms on a freezing night of January 23, 1985. The eight story 125 x 90 Wiesner piano factory @ 524 W 43 st burned out of control for over 3 hours. The north wall collapse destroyed Rescue-1 quarters.  There is an outstanding photo from John Lee Gill showing three members from FDNY in a tower ladder looking into the gates of hell.

What was the alarm total for the Gardner Warehouse?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: anesti on October 20, 2010, 05:38:59 AM
here is some audio from the job where rescue 1 quarters  was destroyed http://www.hfdradio.com/FDNY.htm (http://www.hfdradio.com/FDNY.htm)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 24, 2010, 09:27:09 AM
 Back in the early 80s the FDNY had went to quite a few of those American LaFrance Pumpers. For me it was a little disappointing because I was just "so in Love with those Mack C.F.s". (My wife never knew that though). But just as those Mack Pumpers would pump those jobs and many rubbish and car fires, so did these newer American LaFrance rigs.
  Air conditioning was an Unheard of for any of these rigs at the time. Whether it was a Mack, ALF, or Seagrave rig. I rode a few companies then and sitting in the seat next to that hot engine was sometimes like sitting in a furnace room on a hot summer day. Then a new idea came out. Why not paint the roof of these rigs white, to reflect some of the heat. So I remember seeing a few of those American LaFrance rigs starting to appear with a roof area painted white. As I remember in the Bronx Eng 50 and Eng 82 had one.
  After that, the all red FDNY Apparatus began to disappear. Each new apparatus began to come in painted white over red, including all ladder companies. In fact, Rescue 5 was formed in Staten Island. One of the older Macks had been put into service as that company, and its roof was repainted white. I remember driving out there from the Bronx to get a photo of it. As I remember, Staten Island also had the first Mack Tower Ladder painted with the new white roof. When that new Ladder Co 85 went into service with the newer color scheme, I also made the trip to Staten Island to get that rig shot. It was also the first time I had seen those old metal "Pump Cans" being carried on a FDNY Ladder truck.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kfd274 on October 24, 2010, 10:08:30 AM
 Back in the early 80s the FDNY had went to quite a few of those American LaFrance Pumpers. For me it was a little disappointing because I was just "so in Love with those Mack C.F.s". (My wife never knew that though). But just as those Mack Pumpers would pump those jobs and many rubbish and car fires, so did these newer American LaFrance rigs.
  Air conditioning was an Unheard of for any of these rigs at the time. Whether it was a Mack, ALF, or Seagrave rig. I rode a few companies then and sitting in the seat next to that hot engine was sometimes like sitting in a furnace room on a hot summer day. Then a new idea came out. Why not paint the roof of these rigs white, to reflect some of the heat. So I remember seeing a few of those American LaFrance rigs starting to appear with a roof area painted white. As I remember in the Bronx Eng 50 and Eng 82 had one.
  After that, the all red FDNY Apparatus began to disappear. Each new apparatus began to come in painted white over red, including all ladder companies. In fact, Rescue 5 was formed in Staten Island. One of the older Macks had been put into service as that company, and its roof was repainted white. I remember driving out there from the Bronx to get a photo of it. As I remember, Staten Island also had the first Mack Tower Ladder painted with the new white roof. When that new Ladder Co 85 went into service with the newer color scheme, I also made the trip to Staten Island to get that rig shot. It was also the first time I had seen those old metal "Pump Cans" being carried on a FDNY Ladder truck.


If you notice, they have been painting the roofs of the School Busses white to reflect the heat and keep the interiors cooler.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on October 24, 2010, 03:37:44 PM
The very first FDNY rig to have a white roof was SQ 1 s ALF which was painted white as a pilot program......i dont remember the year...afterwards others were painted also.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: R1SmokeEater on October 24, 2010, 03:45:49 PM
The very first FDNY rig to have a white roof was SQ 1 s ALF which was painted white as a pilot program......i dont remember the year...afterwards others were painted also.

Squad-1, 1982 ALF #AP-8201 (Bill D)

(http://img139.imageshack.us/img139/9545/sq1alf.th.jpg) (http://img139.imageshack.us/img139/9545/sq1alf.jpg)

"Staten Island also had the first Mack Tower Ladder painted with the new white roof. When that new Ladder Co 85 went into service with the newer color scheme, I also made the trip to Staten Island to get that rig shot"

TL-85 1981 Mack/Baker #MT-8107

(http://img89.imageshack.us/img89/1569/tl85.th.jpg) (http://img89.imageshack.us/img89/1569/tl85.jpg)

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on October 24, 2010, 04:22:59 PM
E-48  (not the first  8204)

http://fdnysbravest.com/fp178.htm (http://fdnysbravest.com/fp178.htm)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mercurygrandmarquis1 on October 24, 2010, 09:44:23 PM
the 1976 Mack assigned to Rescue 5 also had a white roof (NFD2004 picture)
(http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m638/mercurygrandmarquis1/1980s-1990s/scan00653.jpg)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 24, 2010, 11:54:33 PM
the 1976 Mack assigned to Rescue 5 also had a white roof (NFD2004 picture)
(http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m638/mercurygrandmarquis1/1980s-1990s/scan00653.jpg)

  Thanks Zack very much for posting that picture of Rescue 5 for me. It was the first Rescue to have white over red colors. But had been in service, "Red ONLY", prior to going into service for the newly formed Rescue 5. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 24, 2010, 11:58:25 PM
The very first FDNY rig to have a white roof was SQ 1 s ALF which was painted white as a pilot program......i dont remember the year...afterwards others were painted also.
Squad-1, 1982 ALF #AP-8201 (Bill D)
(http://img139.imageshack.us/img139/9545/sq1alf.th.jpg) (http://img139.imageshack.us/img139/9545/sq1alf.jpg)
"Staten Island also had the first Mack Tower Ladder painted with the new white roof. When that new Ladder Co 85 went into service with the newer color scheme, I also made the trip to Staten Island to get that rig shot"
TL-85 1981 Mack/Baker #MT-8107
(http://img89.imageshack.us/img89/1569/tl85.th.jpg) (http://img89.imageshack.us/img89/1569/tl85.jpg)


   Thanks Jamie (r1smokeeater) for posting these two photos.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 25, 2010, 08:17:41 AM
E-48  (not the first  8204)

http://fdnysbravest.com/fp178.htm (http://fdnysbravest.com/fp178.htm)

  Thanks Mike for that Engine 48 photo of the ALF w/white roof photo. Spent a little time in that neighborhood. And I can't remember how many times that Engine 48 was in the Top for Runs/Workers. Is that "Turk 132" I see in there ?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bronx72 on October 30, 2010, 08:47:53 PM
I am new to posting but have spent lots of time reading and enjoying all of your terrific stories and information about "The War Years".
My question goes back to some discussion you were having about second sections. "Guitarman" posted a copy of a run card - Box 2255, that showed both sections of E41 responding, one of them replacing E83 on the 1st alarm.  Was E41 on every run card that way?  Related to this, a retired FF from L31 told me that when E85 joined 82 & 31 and later when it moved to Boston Road that it was assigned some of 82's boxes to run to 1st due.  Both of these examples seem to suggest that these units ran together.  Of course, it was before any "adaptive response" was initiated.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on October 30, 2010, 09:23:57 PM
I hate to say it but FDNY kept changing the response policy for the 2nd engine co in quarters. In the case of 82 it was 85, & in other cases it was the second sections of the companies. Some bosses felt that th second section was there to reduce the work load on the other engine who the shared quarters with, others felt that there were there for the entire area.

82 & 85 were an interesting pair while in the same quarters. For a while they responded together 1st & 2nd due, or even third due. Other times one was held back in quarters for another box, & for a while they both were assigned to different boxes & would not respond together.

For a while, when The Bronx had three Squads ( # 1, #2, & #5) these units would rotate daily between different companies to try to give them a break.

Engines 512 (Engine 45) & Engine 513 (Engine 94), Ladder 712 (Ladder 31) were all used to give a break to the companies who's quartered that they responded from. After their tour of duty, they returned to their storage quarters & the crew when home until the next afternoon.

FDNY never got the money to make the additional TAC units as they had first planned for.


Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: turk132 on October 30, 2010, 09:56:44 PM
E-48  (not the first  8204)

http://fdnysbravest.com/fp178.htm (http://fdnysbravest.com/fp178.htm)

  Thanks Mike for that Engine 48 photo of the ALF w/white roof photo. Spent a little time in that neighborhood. And I can't remember how many times that Engine 48 was in the Top for Runs/Workers. Is that "Turk 132" I see in there ?
Not that picture.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on October 31, 2010, 02:46:24 AM
I am new to posting but have spent lots of time reading and enjoying all of your terrific stories and information about "The War Years".
My question goes back to some discussion you were having about second sections. "Guitarman" posted a copy of a run card - Box 2255, that showed both sections of E41 responding, one of them replacing E83 on the 1st alarm.  Was E41 on every run card that way?  Related to this, a retired FF from L31 told me that when E85 joined 82 & 31 and later when it moved to Boston Road that it was assigned some of 82's boxes to run to 1st due.  Both of these examples seem to suggest that these units ran together.  Of course, it was before any "adaptive response" was initiated.
  I have a bunch of "War Years" era assignment cards that E82 had previously responded to on the 2nd thru 5th alarm. During the E82/E85 in the same house period E82 was removed from the cards and replaced with E85. In addition no relocator was sent to E85 because E82 remained in the house. Before this E82 didn't relocate and was always covered usually by E41, 42, 50, 83, 88 or 90. In the case of E41, they used to relocate to E36, 58, 68, 73, 82, 91 & 92 and continued to do so when they were a double co.   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: fdce54 on October 31, 2010, 06:37:32 AM
Just a quick question about Engine 85. Being that the were in the same house as Engine 82, why weren't they the second section of 82, in other words 82-2?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bronx72 on October 31, 2010, 07:12:01 AM
Was the trigger for assigning relocators strictly the result of 2nd alarm being transmitted?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 31, 2010, 08:16:43 AM
Just a quick question about Engine 85. Being that the were in the same house as Engine 82, why weren't they the second section of 82, in other words 82-2?
   Frank, I want to say that Engine 85 had their own response district more towards Boston Rd and 169 St where the Tin House was later built. And if I remember, if Engine 82 had a second or third section, it wasn't a permanent thing. The second and third sections were brought in from other parts of the city, and then also joined in on Engine 82s response area. When those companies came in, they really Weren"t ACTING Eng 82, they BECAME Engine 82 (Second and Third Sections, Eng 82-2, Eng 82-3) within that response area. Each just took turns responding to the numerous fires within that area. Then when things slowed down, those companies returned to their own home.
   And "Bronx72", glad you joined us. In those busy days just about anything went on. There was no trigger that I could say (speaking only as a Buff now) involving second alarms and relocated companies. It was just so busy, they were happy to get whoever they could. And actually going to a Second Alarm, really wasn't too popular, because where do we find those companies from. A dispatcher would often say; "All right, we'll TRY to get you those Second Alarm Companies" It wasn't an easy thing to do in those days.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on October 31, 2010, 10:01:36 AM
My father worked in E246/L169/E327 early in his career when they were located in a large 3-bay Sheepshead Bay firehouse on E 23 St.  E327 actually started as the 2nd section of E246 in the early days of the department.  Both engines usually responded on the same boxes, even though I believe E246 was usually listed first on the response cards.  When the box location was to the right of the firehouse, E246 usually exited first and took "1st due status".  When the box was to the left (which was the door the large Ahrens Fox was located), E327 responded in the lead.  They operated this way even though E23 St became a dead end when the Belt Parkway was completed and they always had to turn right.  E327 was disbanded by Bloomberg (not really) in 1960 when E246/L169 moved to a new firehouse on E11 St. I think E327 was originally going to get a new firehouse but that did not happen.

When battalions ran with 2 sections in the early war years, they usually rotated responses.  In 1966, Bn 44 (2nd sect) was credited with 4605 runs,  Bn 44 (1st sect) had 4590 runs.  9195 total runs for the Bn., if combined.  The run totals reflect the 50-50 split.  Bn 44 (2nd sect) became Bn 58.

FDNY had a long history of 2 section companies due to workload or distance from nearby firehouses.  I guess there has been different rules about counting runs/workers at different times.  

By the way, E327 looked like one of these 1939 NY Worlds Fair Fire Dept (members detailed from FDNY) pumpers:
(http://img232.imageshack.us/img232/677/engine331.th.jpg) (http://img232.imageshack.us/img232/677/engine331.jpg)(http://img232.imageshack.us/img232/1767/firetrucktp.th.jpg) (http://img232.imageshack.us/img232/1767/firetrucktp.jpg)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on October 31, 2010, 11:10:02 AM
What you have to remember that in fire houses where there was a full time double section it showed on the assignment cards. If you look back in history of Manhattan you might see the same company relocating & on a higher alarm the other section might have responded to the incident. At this point, another company might have been relocated into that empty fire house. Manhattan in the old days was also known for double or triple relocations. Example Company B relocates to company E. Company E relocated to company K & company K goes to company S.  The thinking was that this would save time to get a unit in service at company S.

FDNY relocations over the years was also preplanned & showed on the assignment cards. These moves were automatic.  Then during the busy years that policy was stopped & companies were relocated at the direction of the borough dispatchers. It took several years for the relocations to disappear off of the assignment cards, so one would think that the policy was still in effect if you were not in the department.  The dispatchers would also relocate companies to fill open areas based on what today is know as response neighbors. Today the computer would automatically suggest a unit to relocate. This suggestion can be over rode by the dispatcher. Yesterday, the dispatcher would use a company that had all, or most of the associates in service. When the double sections were in service, some times it was better to use one of these companies instead of emptying a fire house. Each  borough & each dispatcher had their own ideas on this subject.

Now with 82 & 85 being in the same quarters, on Friday & Saturday nights additional units were moved into their quarters from Manhattan, or Queens. Sometimes Brooklyn sent additional units. I remember Staten Is units coming into the South Bronx on several occasions, but the Bronx was really burning those nights. They never had full time second sections like Rockaway, or Coney Island did. 

   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on October 31, 2010, 12:19:17 PM
Now with 82 & 85 being in the same quarters, on Friday & Saturday nights additional units were moved into their quarters from Manhattan, or Queens. Sometimes Brooklyn sent additional units. I remember Staten Is units coming into the South Bronx on several occasions, but the Bronx was really burning those nights. They never had full time second sections like Rockaway, or Coney Island did. 

  Thanks "mack" and "Atlas" for helping to clear things up. The last sentence above explains why SOMETIMES you would hear Second Sections for various companies. Sometimes you would NOT. Of course there were some companies that had Second sections all the time. Like Engine 41-1 and Engine 41-2, or Ladder 17-1 and Ladder 17-2. The rest would be companies brought in from various parts of the City during a very high activity time. Fridays and Saturday Nights of course were always a busy time. Just chasing the pull boxes alone, not counting any fires, could keep three sections running all night long. I'd see three Engine Cos and maybe another Truck Co running from the quarters of Engine 82, in ADDITION to E 85, Lad 31, and TCU 712. Very seldom were they all at the firehouse together on Intervale Ave. (Five Engines, 3 Ladders, and a Chief all on the run chasing calls in just a few square blocks). When they were parked on Intervale Ave, it looked like "Red Square". And Brooklyn, Harlem, and the Lower East Side, was also catching its share too.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on October 31, 2010, 12:28:01 PM
E60/L17/BC14 house was a "red square with sometimes 2 lines of apparatus staged on 143rd between Alexander & Willis to act as 2nd, 3rd & 4th sections.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on October 31, 2010, 01:09:44 PM
If you were to look at Bronx history, the double up companies (second seconds) were Engine 41 & 50. Engine 46-2 was transfered over to Engine 88. Engine 88-2 became Engine 72.

Double up Ladders were 17 & 27. Ladder 27-2 became Ladder 58.

TCU 712 became L-59

Engine 41-2 was replaced by Squad 5

Squad 1 moved to the Bronx @ Ladder 58 quarters. (Old quarters of Eng 46 & Lad 27 on East 176 St.) Moved over to Eng 45.

Engine 46 & Ladder 27 with Batt 56 moved to the new station (their current quarters).


Battalions: 3 was at E-82, & was assigned a double section which became Batt 27. BC 27 stayed at 82 & BC 3 moved to E94. BC 27 is now at Eng 79.

Battalion 14 also had a 2nd section which became Batt 26. Batt 18's secion section became Batt 56. Also there was a police if they had a spare BC in the city at night, he became batt 18-2 for a while. However Batt 55 was never a double section of any BC that I can remember.

Years back Eng 70's second section on weekends was Engine 76-2 from Manhattan.


Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bronx72 on October 31, 2010, 01:41:52 PM
Thanks "nfd2004" for the welcome and to all of you for making "The War Years" come alive (again).  I can almost smell the smoke.
It sure seems like the situation was so fluid that the run cards and policies were just thrown out the window and the dispatchers did what they could.  It's a remarkable thought about all those units lining up like a taxi stand at Grand Central.

E88 had 5700 runs in 1968, 5618 in 1969 (E88-2 joined them on 10/15), and 5975 in 1970.  E88-2 had 5873 runs in 1970. So, basically, E88 had about the same number of runs over the 4 year period even with E88-2 helping out.  Does that mean that they ran together and each was credited?  "Mmatty" and others suggest that the units rotated.  Then, in 1972 E88 had 6634 runs and E88-2 had 6633!
Bear with me: I'm a numbers guy, but this doesn't all make sense.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on October 31, 2010, 03:10:48 PM
Your figures most likely are correct. But what you have to look at also is the runs made by their response neighbors. In this case, Engine 45, 46,  & 48.  If you have the time, pick a five year period. See who was in service in the area in those fire houses during those years. It might be hard to find out what the response policy was back then, but it would interesting to see what you find.

Also check Eng 42, 79, & 90. I know that 88 never ran with 75 on the box but they did with the three previous mentioned units. But remember that Sq. 1 & TAC 512 were also in their area during some of those years.   Then you just might find out Where's The Fire? Eng 88's work has aways been to the south of their quarters. So also between them & 48, but mostly toward 45 & 46 quarters.

Yes, on some boxes both units went, on others only one unit responded. This plan help cut down on the running of some nearby companies. Also take into consideration that response levels were different. Three engines on the box & also the second alarm, not four like today. If 88 was third due on the box, the second section did not respond on the second alarm unless special called. this would keep a company in the area & reduce needed relocations. In some cases, relocations were started on receipt of the old radio signal 10-30.  Rescue 3 was on the third alarm in some battalions back then if I remember correctly.

Something else to take into consideration is FDNY's police about giving credit for runs to relocating units. For a good number of years, the credit for a run & also a worker went to the unit who quarters a company responded from. Example Engine 88 was relocated to City Island & had two runs during their stay there. The credit years ago went to Eng 70 & not 88. I think that has since changed to where now 88 would get the credit.









Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on October 31, 2010, 05:07:59 PM
I find FDNY relocation runs interesting. In Boston, if E34 relocated to E33, well any responses would be credited to E34. In Chicago if  L59 relocates to L61  all runs are the runs of L59. I am not making fun of the policy, just why? The ACTUAL company did the run, not the HOUSE. ???









Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on October 31, 2010, 05:15:23 PM
Good info, Atlas.

Minor point, 88 and 75 have traditonally run together, 2d or 3d due, on a few boxes below Fordham Rd. Park and 185th and 188th, Webster and 184th and 188th, Marion and 189th, Tiebout and 184th, Third and 189th, maybe a couple more. Most the same today as I track it.
Fordham Rd was generally the cutoff for 79 coming south. 183d the cutoff for 46 coming north along Park or Webster. 42 ran almost all the way to 189th St but was limited by access east from the Concourse.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: scoobyd on October 31, 2010, 05:53:07 PM
  There's a picture from the 70's in the kitchen of 94/48- taxpayer on Southern Blvd showing L59 and E323 operating.  Makes a bit more sense now.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bronx72 on October 31, 2010, 06:26:15 PM
Good information "atlas". Thanks.
The numbers are just numbers; they are a helpful reference for determining who was busy, but they don't come close to telling the real story of the actions of The Bravest.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on October 31, 2010, 08:14:20 PM
These are the 1943, 1944, 1947, 1956, 1965, 1966, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1975, 1979 and 1984 runs and worker leaders.  1970 started adaptive response (2 + 1) and TCUs.  Note the double section companies in 1943, 1944 and 1947 and the later 2nd section companies of the early War Years, 1969-1971.

 (http://img221.imageshack.us/img221/225/scan0013u.th.jpg) (http://img221.imageshack.us/img221/225/scan0013u.jpg)(http://img221.imageshack.us/img221/2509/scan0012w.th.jpg) (http://img221.imageshack.us/img221/2509/scan0012w.jpg)(http://img221.imageshack.us/img221/999/scan0010h.th.jpg) (http://img221.imageshack.us/img221/999/scan0010h.jpg)(http://img229.imageshack.us/img229/8131/scan0007y.th.jpg) (http://img229.imageshack.us/img229/8131/scan0007y.jpg)(http://img87.imageshack.us/img87/7194/scan0006fj.th.jpg) (http://img87.imageshack.us/img87/7194/scan0006fj.jpg)(http://img221.imageshack.us/img221/8655/scan0005s.th.jpg) (http://img221.imageshack.us/img221/8655/scan0005s.jpg)(http://img100.imageshack.us/img100/9188/scan0004z.th.jpg) (http://img100.imageshack.us/img100/9188/scan0004z.jpg)(http://img100.imageshack.us/img100/296/scan0001gwp.th.jpg) (http://img100.imageshack.us/img100/296/scan0001gwp.jpg)(http://img139.imageshack.us/img139/2963/scan0008z.th.jpg) (http://img139.imageshack.us/img139/2963/scan0008z.jpg)(http://img408.imageshack.us/img408/4672/scan0017d.th.jpg) (http://img408.imageshack.us/img408/4672/scan0017d.jpg)(http://img225.imageshack.us/img225/8490/scan0014v.th.jpg) (http://img225.imageshack.us/img225/8490/scan0014v.jpg)

Note - Click a second time on the image to enlarge to read.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bronx72 on October 31, 2010, 08:25:47 PM
At one point in this thread, "guitarman" posted a list of Interchanges from Sept 1972.  Would it be fair to say that at that time the company doing the covering did not get credit for any runs or work they did?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on October 31, 2010, 08:33:47 PM
Thanks, mack. Makes my point.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nap72 on October 31, 2010, 08:40:11 PM
I find FDNY relocation runs interesting. In Boston, if E34 relocated to E33, well any responses would be credited to E34. In Chicago if  L59 relocates to L61  all runs are the runs of L59. I am not making fun of the policy, just why? The ACTUAL company did the run, not the HOUSE. ???

As a current FDNY officer I can tell you that we record any runs we do, while relocated, on the CD-14 (list of runs/workers) at the company where we are relocated to, and it's been that way as long as I remember. (In RED at the back of the book.)

The amount of these runs are "generally" pretty insignificant and I don't think 90% of the company officers even know who gets the credit or doesn't!  In all honesty none of the runs probably get credited to anyone at all!!! And I'd be willing to believe the same went for the 50's, 60's, 70's, 80's, or 90's! :)

Everything is computerized now.  The difference between what WE record and the computer printouts is quite different.  Generally, the computerized printouts have more runs for us than we have recorded.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on November 01, 2010, 06:27:09 PM
I meant no respect to any company or any member of FDNY or for that matter any member or company. It seems in these asture budget times and crisis the only thing the bean counters see is "out the door" which is a crock. If somebody else has to cover your  house I guess you need the original company and those who covered the area. I guess the bean counters would have to figure out the runs from a particular company in their first due area and on a move-up. Asking too much for the bean counters, huh?? ???Stay safe and stay low my brothers
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nap72 on November 01, 2010, 10:55:52 PM
I meant no respect to any company or any member of FDNY or for that matter any member or company. It seems in these asture budget times and crisis the only thing the bean counters see is "out the door" which is a crock. If somebody else has to cover your  house I guess you need the original company and those who covered the area. I guess the bean counters would have to figure out the runs from a particular company in their first due area and on a move-up. Asking too much for the bean counters, huh?? ???Stay safe and stay low my brothers

Hope that wasn't directed at me.

I know you meant no disrespect.  I'm just trying to clarify something that no one seems to be able to clarify.  INCLUDING MYSELF!!! :)

It's very ambiguous...
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 03, 2010, 11:02:32 AM
On another site (FDNYRANT), I read this by "seniorofficer" and thought it told just a small part of the War Years Story. I quote "seniorofficer".... "Engine 235, you're going in Third Due to a working fire, West 21st Street and Surf Ave". "Pack a lunch, it's a long ride fellas". (I hope "senionofficer" doesn't mind me using this)
  How I remember those Days. Hard to believe, but Engine 235 leaving their own response area, to go as the Third Due Engine to Coney Island. Similiar to seeing Queens Engine 323 operating in the Bronx on Southern Blvd. as "scoopbyd" said earlier.
  I have to guess it must have been a nightmare trying to figure out if you are going in as the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd due Engine, or 1st or 2nd Due Truck. Of course as most of us know, that plays an important key role on what your assignment is on the fireground. And for those Battalion or Deputy Chiefs, I have no idea on how they kept track of who was doing what.
  Your primary response area might be private dwellings, but before the night was over, you could be stretching that first line in on the Top Floor of a six Brick Multiple Dwelling. My guess is that if you were on the job during those Busy War Years, no matter what company or where you worked, very few escaped the "out of control" Action. And in reality, as I understand it, NOBODY really wanted to escape the Action.
  Therefore, "They" really were the Greatest Generation of Firefighters during the Busiest of Times we've ever seen.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on November 03, 2010, 09:55:08 PM
Similiar to seeing Engine 323 operating in the Bronx on Southern Blvd. as "scoopbyd" said earlier.

When I was a kid, a Lieutenant in E-323 lived on my block and his MPO lived directly across the street from him. I can remember them coming down the block in 'Their Quad' frequently on their way back from runs. Back then, the majority of the men in the community were cops, Firemen and sanitation men.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 03, 2010, 10:10:22 PM
Similiar to seeing "Queens"  Engine 323 operating in the Bronx on Southern Blvd. as "scoopbyd" said earlier.

  What's wrong with this "NFD2004 Guy" ??? When did BROOKLYN's ENGINE 323, ever move to QUEEN'S. It's Home has been Brooklyn for years.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on November 03, 2010, 10:54:53 PM
Similiar to seeing "Queens"  Engine 323 operating in the Bronx on Southern Blvd. as "scoopbyd" said earlier.

  What's wrong with this "NFD2004 Guy" ??? When did BROOKLYN's ENGINE 323, ever move to QUEEN'S. It's Home has been Brooklyn for years.

There's nothing wrong with you Brother ... You introduce a lot of topics that bring back great memories ... thanks for continuing to contribute ...
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: fdce54 on November 04, 2010, 05:31:28 AM
When a guy gets to be his age, his hair isn't the only thing he is losing. ;D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on November 04, 2010, 08:53:19 AM
Hey!  Stop using my number!   :P
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bronx72 on November 04, 2010, 09:39:16 PM
A couple more questions for all of you:
Have the street patterns (direction of one-ways) in the Bronx remained the same for the past 40 or so years?
Obviously the buildings have changed.

Have the box locations and assignments remained the same?

And E83's first due area back in the 60's...was that industrial (something like Long Island City is now), or a mix of residential?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 04, 2010, 09:56:45 PM
"Bronx72", yes many box assignments have changed. Companies have been disbanded and a few new firehouses have changed response assignments. Somebody mentioned about changes to 48/56 and 75/33 on another thread just recently.

  Over the last 40 years, I have to guess that there have been some changes to street patterns.

  And Engine 83 has been a combination of a little of everything. Industrial, Multiple Dwellings, etc. Might even have a few Private dwellings in the neighborhood. It hasn't changed much over the years. But I'm sure there's people out there that know more about these questions than I do.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: dillondotcom on November 06, 2010, 12:30:47 AM
To answer street patterns yes they do change. Actually in the past week in Hunts Point Faile St., a one way street, was changed to a one way going in the opposite direction between Bruckner Blvd and Westchester Ave.  This was done b/c there is a new traffic patterin at the 163, Hunts Point Ave, Southern Blvd intersection that allows no turns.  I am sure that this is not the only place in the city where traffic patterns have changed. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bronx72 on November 06, 2010, 05:52:28 PM
Thanks, both of you, for the feedback.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 07, 2010, 07:29:36 AM
Once again my GOOD FRIEND, "mikeindabronx" has added some GREAT Bronx and Harlem photos to his web site. Mike has now added "page 12" to his Great photo Collection from the FDNY 1980s.
  Mike, I gotta tell you, "You sure are one Tough Act to Follow".
  To see these Great Photos, go to his site: 
                       www.fdnysbravest.com (http://www.fdnysbravest.com)       (then go to page 12 for his latest photos)
  Thanks very much Mike. You sure did One Great Job. And now a total of Twelve Pages of some of the Best and Most Historic FDNY Photos out there.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on November 07, 2010, 09:44:40 AM
Bill....thank you for the kind words.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 07, 2010, 11:06:05 AM
Actually Mike, the REAL THANKS goes to you. Remember, "A PICTURE is worth a Thousand Words". And those pictures tell more than any words can ever say.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on November 07, 2010, 12:04:02 PM
  The last photo on page 12 showing one of many multiple alarm jobs at 500 Southern Blvd. really hit home with me. I used to be able to see plumes of smoke from those fires when I worked in an office in the penthouse of the Bronx general post office across town at 149th & Grand Concourse. BTW, 500 Southern Blvd. has been renovated and re-occupied for a while. :) 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on November 07, 2010, 12:28:44 PM
I can remember if I was down with 73/42 & BN 55 and 2214 came in everybody would say it must be 500 Southern Blvd. I remember one time TL-117 & TL-14 were working on the Timpson Pl. side. I stopped by there about 3 weeks ago and as G-man said it's been renovated and looks pretty good from the outside.

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=490+Southern+Boulevard,+New+York,+NY&sll=40.841757,-73.876066&sspn=0.017077,0.045104&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=490+Southern+Blvd,+Bronx,+New+York+10455&t=h&z=16 (http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=490+Southern+Boulevard,+New+York,+NY&sll=40.841757,-73.876066&sspn=0.017077,0.045104&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=490+Southern+Blvd,+Bronx,+New+York+10455&t=h&z=16)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 1261Truckie on November 07, 2010, 12:51:13 PM
mikeindabronx,

Thanks for the newest page. Each page seems to be another chapter in the FDNY's history. You have provided us with a personal glimpse at a truly remarkable time.
Those days (and some of the guys) may be gone, but you help us all to remember.

Jim Boyle (aka 1261truckie)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: jkal on November 07, 2010, 04:38:47 PM
Remember being at a vacant H-type tenement with L-59 in the early 80's.  Tremont & Harrison, corner building.  I was on the roof.  BC Jim Slevin from the 19th Batt gives a progress report,  "we have fire out 36 windows".  Great time and great roof op's.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on November 07, 2010, 07:50:20 PM
More great memories Mike ... Keep up the good work, it's appreciated more than you know!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on November 07, 2010, 08:35:40 PM
Mike ....thanks for continuing excellent history documentation through your lens.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on November 07, 2010, 09:20:54 PM
I am very happy to know that the photos are so well received.  I have many memories of taking these pictures and I know they can't compare with what it was like on the other side of the lens.  I enjoy sharing these memories and will continue to do so.  Thanks very much to all of you.

Mike
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kidfrmqns on November 11, 2010, 02:07:17 PM
Question about 82/31's area: Was Loius Nine Blvd a continuation of Wilkens Ave before it was named Loius Nine?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on November 11, 2010, 02:43:12 PM
Question about 82/31's area: Was Loius Nine Blvd a continuation of Wilkens Ave before it was named Loius Nine?
  Yes, and Rev. Polite Ave. is Stebbins Ave.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on November 12, 2010, 06:14:11 PM
I am very happy to know that the photos are so well received.  I have many memories of taking these pictures and I know they can't compare with what it was like on the other side of the lens.  I enjoy sharing these memories and will continue to do so.  Thanks very much to all of you.

Mike

Thanks for keeping 'the old days' alive for those of us who are no longer able to 'play'. As far as "what it was like on the other side of the lens" ... It was a tremendous experience, an adrenalin rush that beat all adrenalin rushes ... coupled with working among the greatest Firemen in the world .... Something that could NEVER be matched, let alone beat.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 20, 2010, 12:46:45 PM
I had a friend who I grew up with. His father and my father worked on the job in Bridgeport together. This guy was also into the fire dept. He would buff the FDNY pretty regular with my brother and I. He later got on the Fire Patrol (I think Patrol 1) and became an Auxiliary with Engine 83. When we used to buff, I would say to him, "which area do you want to hang out in 82, or 83". Both were very busy companies. Streets like Cypruss Ave, St Ann's, and Brook were all catching jobs daily. And of course further north like Stebbins Ave, Tinton, Fox, and World Famous Charolette St were also getting daily jobs. So it was a "toss up" on which area we went to.
  I was talking with "Capnkeys" (George G.) recently and he made a very good point. He has a relative that worked 83/29 then. He said if Dennis Smith had worked at 83/29 instead of 82/31 he probadly would have called his book; "REPORT from Engine 83. Both Engines were doing a Huge amount of Fire Duty. In fact, it could have been any South Bronx Company in those days. Or East NY, Bed Sty, Bushwick, Lower East Side or Harlem Company.
  Actually, it didn't matter if we hung out with 82 or 83, 41, 45, 50, 60, 71,73, or took a little trip to Brooklyns 209 (RIP), 231, 234, 277, 290, or many others. On a Busy Night, it was all the same thing. Lots of fires and not enough companies to deal with it.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on November 27, 2010, 08:03:53 PM
NFD,
 You forgot 46,88,and 94? 88 and 94, and maybe 46 too, were first in runs or workers at one point during the real war years.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 28, 2010, 12:13:42 AM
Bill .... these links w/my comments can be found in the  "History" forum on this site.

  Sorry there Chief. My mistake. I'll delete my post.

  And "3511" you are right, 46, 88, 94 all were up there also with Runs and Workers during the War Years in the Bronx. Yes, it could have been "Report from Engine 46" if Dennis Smith had worked there instead of Eng 82. I'd say, everything South of Fordham Rd, Excluding a few square blocks around 88, with Webster Ave to the West and Bruckner Blvd to the East was burning.

  Same thing for many parts of Brooklyn, Harlem, and the Lower East Side. How's "Report from Engine 28" sound, or "Report from Engine 231" ?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on November 28, 2010, 09:22:01 AM
And we both forgot E85...shame on us.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kidfrmqns on November 29, 2010, 10:05:33 AM
And we both forgot E85...shame on us.

There are already 2 books on E85, "When the Bronx Burned" and "The Usual"  ;D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on November 29, 2010, 12:57:32 PM
Around the spring of 1990 I had the priviledge of being invited to ride with Engine 17 on Pitt St. for the first time. My good friend Lt. Mike Lopez (Ret.) was a fireman on Tower Ladder 18 at the time. I arrived in the evening just after the change of tours. Mike introduced me to the Lt. and he said I could ride in the rear facing seat behind the chaffeur. In the area I was sitting, someone's gear (3/4 boots,coat, helmet etc.) was stuffed on the engine cover and I asked about it and the Lt. said it belonged to one of the members that just got off duty. He said, "just leave it there". Right after that, a run came in and I didn't get a chance to meet or chat with anyone else on the Engine and off we went. I said hello to the fireman (I think his name was John) sitting across from me and he said hello back.

During this time period I remember some the fellas in the FDNY wearing "FR" Rubin Bros. dungarees and blue company t-shirts or the collared Rubin Bros. polo shirts. While riding on Engine 17, I was wearing jeans, a blue t-shirt from my Dept and a blue work jacket and I had someone's fire gear sitting near me...you can probably imagine where this is going.

After about 3 back-to-back runs I noticed other firemen and "John" were congregated in front of the building we were at, they were talking to each other, while looking and pointing at me. I just stayed in  Engine 17 and kept quiet. When John got back in the rig I said, "nothing much to it ?" John said, "if you would get your ass off the rig and join us you might find out !" I said, "I'm sorry, this is my first time riding along and I thought I'm supposed to stay here". He looked at me with a very puzzled look and asked, "are you on the job". I said, "no, not in this Dept. I work in Va. Beach and Mike on Ladder 18 is a friend of mine" He started laughing and said "Oh man, I'm so sorry". Now I gave him the same puzzled look and wondered what was going on. John told me the other firemen came up to him after the third run and said "who's that !*%$@ guy sitting in the rig" and John told them he had no idea and said "that's gotta be the laziest *$%&^ detail we ever got in here !!! He doesn't even get off the rig !!! "

John and I busted out laughing and after everything was explained to the other members on Engine 17 much more laughter broke out. I'll finish the story by saying John took a "little" heat the rest of the evening for not having a clue who he was sitting across from. 



 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 29, 2010, 03:23:10 PM

During this time period I remember some the fellas in the FDNY wearing "FR" Rubin Bros. dungarees and blue company t-shirts or the collared Rubin Bros. polo shirts. While riding on Engine 17, I was wearing jeans, a blue t-shirt from my Dept and a blue work jacket and I had someone's fire gear sitting near me...you can probably imagine where this is going.

 John told me the other firemen came up to him after the third run and said "who's that !*%$@ guy sitting in the rig" and John told them he had no idea and said "that's gotta be the laziest *$%&^ detail we ever got in here !!! He doesn't even get off the rig !!! "  

  DeanO, that's a Great Story. Thank you. I could just picture that happening. I also rode with several FDNY companies over the years. As I remember they were Engine 82, 92, and 41 (now Squad 41). And in Brooklyn Engine 290, and Ladder 176. And of course my first ride back in 1968 with Rescue 2 and Lt Hamilton. He's gone now, but I'm very Thankful to him and all the other members that always treated me "Excellent" in these very busy companies. I'll Never forget those days. I considered it similiar to playing ball with the Major Leagues. It was an "Experience of a Lifetime".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on November 29, 2010, 08:01:29 PM
Willy, "Nfd", you could have written "Report from Engine 2".......(Greenville)......don't sell yourself short !!!!!!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on November 29, 2010, 10:43:20 PM
Or any company from East Harlem.

In the Spring of 1968 I first brought some college chums from upstate to my hometown, New York, NY. These guys were from various places around the USA,...rich kid from Virginia, steel worker son from Pittsburgh, farmer from Iowa, etc..you get the picture.

I had a buddy working in 91-2 who invited us down whenever in town. We always arrived carrying a case or two of Budweiser. We were instructed to grab turnouts that fit off the rack and put them on the rig. When the bells rang, just follow the guys, they'd tell us what to do.

And did the bells ring. Constantly. Didn't matter which section was "up front" on a given night, we rolled continuously between 6:30 PM and midnight. Didn't bother with supper till after then.

Initially, 91-2 had an old Ward LaFrance CD rig. We'd squeeze onto the back step, elbow thru the subway strap, bouncing through Harlem. Keep your knees loose or you'd bounce off the rig. Maybe sometimes have to put someone to ride on top of the hose bed. A long ride to box 1237, 5th Ave and 96th street, 91's last box south, or over the bridge to relocate at E60 (and more work). And took quite a bit of "incoming " from the roof tops along the way.

At a worker, we'd hump hose up the stairwells. That's how we earned our keep as guests. The brothers needed the help and we were glad to oblige. Back to the house for a quick brew and out again. Midnight supper and then the card games began. By 2 AM, things were quiet and all grabbed a few hours sleep. Seems like there was always a run on Pleasant Ave about 6:30 AM.

 We got to leave at the tour change but the brothers came back and did it again the next night. God bless 'em all.

After all these years my chums (who have lived all over the world since) still ask about the guys on 91-2, 91-1, and Hook & Ladder 43.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bigandy on November 30, 2010, 10:57:54 AM
We always hear the stories about all those busy ghetto companies from the South Bronx and the ghettoes of Brooklyn/Manhattan. But...what was the work like for slower companies in better, less-poverty-stricken neighborhoods in the city w/ all of their relocations and what-not?

Thanks,

Andy
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 30, 2010, 11:24:24 AM
"Bigandy", speaking as a buff during those days, basically EVERYBODY SAW WORK. If not relocated as second or third sections, several slower companies would interchange firehouses with the more busier companies. You'd see companies on the streets that you never knew existed.
  Don't forget, many times there'd be numerous fires in the same neighborhood with nobody to respond. So extra companies would have to be brought in just to try and cover some of the fires.
   I just read on the FDNYRANT, a story written by one of the retired FDNY members from Engine 82. He spoke of responding to a Fourth Alarm, in his first due area. He said during that same time, there were TWO Other Fourth Alarms in Engine 82s first due area. A total of Three Fourth Alarms going all at the same time, in 82s area.
   So even companies that didn't see much work in their own neighborhood, still were fighting numerous fires. It didn't really matter too much where you worked in the city. You were going to see work.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on November 30, 2010, 12:21:57 PM
We, in Brooklyn, used to have a saying: "plenty of fire for everyone."
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: jbendick on November 30, 2010, 08:32:07 PM
   I can remember one weekday when I was in Squad 2 . There were 4 sections of 73 Engine all catching a good job. We also had our own job in the squad. None of the relocators wanted to go home. There were many times when companies were told not to use the
computer in qrt's because you are the 3rd or 4th sections. On any given Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights, it was not uncommon to hear the dispatcher, at the beginning of the tour, say the following units are being relocated to the boro of The Bronx. When they switched freq. they would be told to park thier rigs out in front of 82 or one of the other houses in the 6th Div. What a time to be a young pup in the ghetto. Oh, those were the days.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on November 30, 2010, 10:03:48 PM
Thanks John for taking the time to tell us your story. You were there and at times so was I. But I was just on the sideline watching what I couldn't believe. Yourself and a few others on here have fought fires during the busiest time in history. And you worked in the busiest city in the world. In the beginning of the documentry titled "The Bronx is Burning", the commentator states New York has more fires than Detroit, Chicago, Philadelphia and Los Angeles....."Put Together". That pretty much explained it.
  Just about everytime I went down there, I went home and couldn't believe what I had seen. I ALWAYS caught fires. I think the most I caught in one time was 11 Jobs. But that was not Citywide. It was probadly within a few square miles. And sometimes while I was at one, I'd see smoke from another.
  Those guys really are "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters". There are guys on this site like "johnd248", "mikeindabronx" or "G-man" that I'm sure can vouch for what I say.
  I personnally saw what guys like John and a few others on this site did. Funny thing I noticed about these guys. Very few want any "pat on the back". In their view they just did what they were supposed to do. But in reality, I don't know of Anybody else who did what They did.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 02, 2010, 12:10:27 AM
 
  I remember a night tour I spent riding with my father in the early 1970s like it was last night.  I was still a kid in school. My father was still a relatively new battalion chief.  He was newly assigned to the 43rd Battalion in Coney Island after spending almost two years bouncing around the city covering in just about every battalion.  Experience came fast in those days and he was glad he had a chance to work in so many busy places with some terrific firefighters.  He had an old Rand McNally city street map with tick marks locating firehouses he had worked in.  The map was covered with marks from all over the city.  I still have that map. 
  Reliefs were made early to avoid traffic and the back-to-back run activity that spiraled as afternoons dragged on.  It was about 1530 when we turned off the Belt Parkway at the Cropsey Avenue exit.  We could see two plumes of smoke rising from different locations in Coney Island.  One had thick, dark, heavy smoke pushing upward – a good job somewhere off Mermaid Avenue.  The other smoke was the white and thin – the dying remains of a worker closer to Seagate. 
  We turned down Neptune Avenue and did not waste time to look at the 3rd Alarm in progress off Stillwell Avenue.  We parked next to the new firehouse on W 8th St.  No surprise that it was empty.  Two cops were dragging a handcuffed teenager into the 60th Precinct next door.  Kids were walking down the sidewalk and did not even notice the cops dragging their prisoner.  It was a common sight.  We entered quarters and quickly placed turnout gear next to the empty battalion bay.  There was about a dozen pair of black low quarter shoes spread around the apparatus floor.  There were drip pans centered where E 245 and L 161 parked their rigs.  The odor of exhaust fumes lingered.  The department radio was a constant stream of box announcements and progress reports.  It was a typical afternoon.
  One of the truck guys from the incoming night shift was waiting in the kitchen.  He explained matter-of-factly that some Coney Island gangs had spent the day setting fires.  They threatened to burn each other’s blocks down.  The 9x6 shift had several good jobs but had missed the 3rd alarm because they were operating at a vacant building on Surf Avenue.  The battalion solid red station wagon pulled up and Chief Harry Dammers jumped out wearing a sweaty gray and black tee shirt and a filthy uniform hat.  He was big, burly and talkative.  That afternoon, he was quiet and appeared exhausted.  He had a content smile on his face, the kind of smile an athlete has when he has gone all out in a game and is satisfied with his efforts. 
  Chief Dammers explained that he was had changed into his last white tee shirt after lunch and gone through two other shirts earlier in the day.  He tenderly rubbed his shoulder and claimed that he had to take a door down with it because he did not have a truck company available at an earlier job.  I didn’t doubt him.  He said all his fires were suspicious, that the Fire Marshals had been requested and that he would like to have a Halligan tool and five minutes with the assholes who were burning down Mermaid Avenue.  The battalion aide arrived, Louis Massuci, as the Voice Alarm announced our first run.  It was the same address they had just operated at, a large abandoned rooming house on Surf Avenue.   L 161 was just arriving back at quarters as we pulled out.  The truck just turned their lights back on and responded down W 8th St.
  The dispatcher was still trying to locate an available engine company as we passed W 15 St., the location of the former firehouse of E 244.  The city disbanded E 244 in 1968 just as the War Years were taking off.  A third engine on Coney Island could have made a big difference during those years.  We transmitted a 10-30 when we were still 4 or 5 blocks away.  An empty apartment on the second floor was burning.  E 318 and L 166 became available and responded in.  It took 7 or 8 minutes for E 246 to arrive.  No FAST truck, no squad, no rescue, no deputy chief.  Tower ladder in operation, one line stretched.  No exposures – just empty lots with bricks, trash, ADVs.  No cars driving down Surf Avenue towards Seagate even slowed down to look at the activity of 24 firefighters going to work.  There was not much left of the building.  This job was quick.  Then the Brooklyn dispatcher – “43 battalion, available?”
  Our second job was a store on Mermaid Avenue.  It was actually a vacant apartment above a locked-up store.  E 245 had been special called and transmitted the 10-75.  I believe it was Captain Frank Tuttlemundo, a great guy.  A burglar alarm was ringing from the empty store.  E 254 was the 3rd engine.  Usually, most jobs on Coney Island were 2&2.  This was an “all hands” but we only had 3 engines and two trucks.  Rescue 2 was assigned on the 3rd alarm to Coney Island boxes back then and Rescue 5 had not been reformed.  No squads.  Field Comm unavailable. No “all-hands” chief available. Division 12, and the other near-by battalions were still operating at the 3rd alarm.  We were lucky to have the 3rd engine.
  The fire on the 2nd floor was extinguished and companies had started overhauling when the L 166 officer announced on his handi-talkie “L 166 to 43 – Chief I can see a fire across the empty lot on West something street – we got another job!”
  One engine remained at the store job and everyone else moved across the empty lot to the vacant tenement.  There were flames coming from the second floor.  The tenement was unoccupied but exposures were occupied.  Kids were playing on the street in front of the fire building.  No one seemed to care about a fire in a vacant building.  Fire was a common sight.  Another 10-75.  Same units operated. 
  The tower ladder went into operation.  One line stretched and in operation.  A second line was stretched.  Then one of the members announced on his handi-talkie “Bn43 – there is smoke coming from one of the buildings across the street.”  Another job.
  Our aide, Louis, called the dispatcher with the location.  An engine and truck were special called.  This was 1&1 for a structure fire.  No available chief. The 43 Bn took both jobs simultaneously.  Neither fire was significant. Routine.
  On the way back to quarters, we stopped at the site of the 3rd alarm.  It was an old hotel.  A few units were still at that location.  Another 3500 Coney Island box came in.  On the boardwalk.  Louis, the battalion aide, drove past the box location, turned off the lights, drove up the ramp and rumbled along the boardwalk hoping to catch or scare the kids who pulled the box.  A false alarm. 10-92 transmitted.  Headed back to quarters.  Important decisions have to be made.
  Frequently a member was left back on runs to finish cooking the meal if one was planned.  This tour there was no time.  Pizza?  Who is in?  Pepperoni?  Sausage?  Where are we going to pick it up from?  Before we can pick up the pizzas, a couple of runs – trash and another 10-92.  We pick up the pizza, return to quarters, and start inhaling the slices.  The voice alarm interrupts another meal.  Location is near Seagate.  L 166 transmits a 10-30 shortly after leaving quarters because of the orange glow in the sky.  A vacant bungalow is fully involved.  2&2 job.
  We had another 5 or 6 runs through the night.  Nothing significant.  Routine.  We ate a few slices of cold pizza.  It was the best pizza I ever had.   We got about 2 or 3 hours of sleep.
  My dad’s relief came in about 7:30.  There was a quick cross over.  Then we headed home. 
  I always remembered that night because it was the first time I realized and appreciated the occupation my father was in.  No rescues were made.  No one thanked any member for the work done.  No jobs made the newspapers or the local news.  But I saw the same look on the faces of the members who had worked that shift that I had seen on Chief Dammers when he finished his tour the afternoon before.  It was the look a professional has when their work is challenging and well done. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on December 02, 2010, 01:30:09 AM
mack very interesting story of times gone by....Thanks.......here is some info on the Frank Tuttlemundo the former CPT. of ENG*245 who made the Supreme Sacrifice pushing a LT. to safety in a bldg collapse as a result of a Fire on Osborn St off Pitkin Ave in B'Ville when he was a BC in BN*44 8-13-80 RIP.  
...
QUOTE by OT.
BC Frank T. Tuttlemondo Celebration
Monday, August 16, 2010 - The members of Watkins St past and present gathered in force to pay tribute to the life and career of the beloved Frank T. Tuttlemondo BC44 who made the supreme sacrifice thirty years to the day on Aug 13th, 1980. It was a remarkable turnout of "FDNY Hall of Famers" who came back home to Watkins St to honor their chief. Over 200 people were in attendance including Brooklyn Borough Commander DAC Chief James Leonard.

Captain Higgins E231 performed as master of ceremonies and interestingly noted the many changes wich have occured to the FDNY in the past 30 years and yet the core principles of Chief Tuttlemondo remain intact today. The FDNY Chaplain blessed the Tuttlemondo Medal and Lt Anthony Rich (E231) sang the National Anthem. Retired 84 year old FF Seymore Schenker proudly dressed in his Class A uniform and performed Taps for his chief and FF Kevin Scott (Ret E232) sang a wonderful rendition of Ave Maria and also gave a passionate speech thanking the current members of Watkins St and Bn44 for having the foresight to honor the chief. Captain Higgins of E231 then ordered the giant photo of Chief Tuttlemondo will proudly hang at the top of the stairs in our firehouse for all eternity. It was another memorable day in the rich history of Watkins St. BC Chief Frank Tuttlemondo will live in our hearts and his presence will be felt on Watkins St each and every day forever.

For photos of the celebration, please see the "image gallery". There wil be more to come in the coming weeks as we recieve them.




A Message From The Captain:
Saturday, August 14, 2010 - To my Watkins St family, I just wanted to comment on yesterday's ceremony remembering BC Frank Tuttlemondo. To our former members, you graced us with your presence, thank you. To the recently promoted guys, nice to see you back. To the current members of both Engine 231 & Ladder 120, your efforts were wonderful. Both I and Capt Bobby Higgins are very proud that this event occured under our command. BUT, it wasn't possible without your hard work. There are only a handful of special Firehouses on our job, we are fortunte to be one of them. It was a GREAT gathering and a memorable day in the storied history of "Watkins St".

Capt John Calamari
Tower Ladder 120

CLICK FOR MORE BROWNSVILLE HISTORY



Read more: http://fdnysforgotten.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=general&action=display&thread=4345#ixzz16vtOr9V0 (http://fdnysforgotten.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=general&action=display&thread=4345#ixzz16vtOr9V0)                   UN   QUOTE........PS also check out their excellent websitehttp://watkinsst.com (http://watkinsst.com)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on December 02, 2010, 02:04:42 AM
After '74... RES*2 responded on the 10-75 thruout the BORO (no RES*5 for another 10 years)........plenty of memorable jobs in CONEY ISLAND thru my years in R*2.....some in some famous boardwalk establishments too....we gave "The Witch" a new home on our kitchen wall after her place burned down .....also some memorable jobs in Seagate Queen Annes especially on a windy night ........the duplex & triplex apartment projects also provided some tough ones......a Member of R*2 lived in a hi-rise there.....one day as we were turning out for a job in C.I. ......the LT. slid the pole & yelled to him... " I got good news & bad news.....the good news ..were going to a job........the bads news ..its in your bldg.".........(he lived several floors below the Fire). .......i was down there on this Veterans Day '10 to visit a Nursing Home & took a ride around after....it is too bad that in bloombags restoration plan for the boardwalk he is eliminating a lot of the classic concessions (like "shoot the freak"...& other bizzare ones & some traditional food places.... he wants to yuppify /trendyzoid the place.....i doubt it will be the same.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mercurygrandmarquis1 on December 02, 2010, 07:31:00 PM
it is too bad that in bloombags restoration plan for the boardwalk he is eliminating a lot of the classic concessions (like "shoot the freak"...& other bizzare ones & some traditional food places.... he wants to yuppify /trendyzoid the place.....i doubt it will be the same.
look at what bloomburg did to northern BK with all the hipsters
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 02, 2010, 08:17:43 PM
Thank you for providing those Excellent Coney Island Stories. During those very busy years, those C.I. companies caught their share of work. Streets like Surf Ave, Neptune Ave, Mermaid Ave were familiar sounds over the scanners. It was a very busy area. I regrete that I always seem to leave it out whenever I talk about "My Younger Buff Years".
  The Great Firefighters like "Macks" father and all the others, including Chief "68jk09", that fought the fires of Coney Island saw PLENTY of Work. I just feel bad that I never give them the credit they rightfully deserve.
  And "Mack", what a Great Story !!! "THANK YOU".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 02, 2010, 08:57:51 PM
This was the 3rd firehouse on Coney Island - E244 - W 15 St - 1st due at Nathans.  Disbanded in 1968.

(http://img338.imageshack.us/img338/5185/e244.th.jpg) (http://img338.imageshack.us/img338/5185/e244.jpg)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on December 02, 2010, 11:58:36 PM
Yes, I remember going to Coney Island in the mid-60's and seeing E244's old 1951 Ward LaFrance. I heard that  they swapped rigs with E248.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kidfrmqns on December 04, 2010, 02:35:31 PM
Sorry about taking the thread back to the Bx war years. Was L59 created when the tin house on Boston Rd opened? Was L59 formed from TCU712 or did they both run in at that area? Was E45 a single engine before the formation of L58? And when was L58 formed? You guys always come through with answers to these questions and as NFD knows I am really interested in the history of this area especially during the war years.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on December 04, 2010, 04:16:35 PM
Ladder 59 was formed from disbanded TCU 712 on 11-24-72. Ladder 58 was formed from second section of Ladder 27 on 8-10-68, relocated to quarters of B-18 on 5-15-74. Cannot help on E-45 ;D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: fdce54 on December 04, 2010, 04:56:01 PM
Brian, Engine 45 was a single house. A new house was built along side the old house which was to be for Engine 45 and a newly formed Ladder 60. Ladder 60 was never formed, Engine 45 stayed in the old house and Ladder 58 and Squad 1 were moved over from the old 46/27 house on E. 176 St and Park Ave into the new house on E. Tremont Ave. I'm sure that had to do with the city's budget crises during that time period.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kidfrmqns on December 04, 2010, 05:57:54 PM
Thanks for the answers guys. Seems 46/27 moved quite a distance from their old house on E176 and Park to their current location.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on December 04, 2010, 09:17:19 PM
I was just back in N.Y.C. for 'a cup of coffee' this week. I stayed in Brooklyn at the home of a friend who also was my Lieutenant in the early 1980's. We went to Nathans in Coney Island for a quick bite ... The dogs and the fries were as good as I remembered and then we went to The Brooklyn Wall of remembrance. It really is a beautiful memorial to all the first responders who were killed on September 11th, 2001. Having moved to Florida in 2003, I don't get back to 'The City' very often, when I do, things like this bring a lot of memories flooding right back.

The stop at Nathan's reminded me that the last time I was there was 1995 after we completed operations at a dive job. We had responded to Coney Island from Manhattan as the regularly assigned Rescue was at a fire. Our Captain had the chauffeur drive the rig to Nathan's and he bought us dinner.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 05, 2010, 10:03:11 AM
You guys always come through with answers to these questions and as NFD knows I am really interested in the history of this area especially during the war years.

  Brian, yes, you can pretty much get any answer to any question on the FDNY, whether it be the War Years 40 years ago, or what new rigs are coming in tomorrow. I also learn something all the time. As a matter of fact, I always thought that Squad 2 was assigned to Eng 73/Lad 42s Qtrs. I just found out that was not the case (from JBendick) who worked that unit. He told me they would go to other firehouses as well.
  And Garrett (69mets), glad to hear that you got up to NYC. We wondered where you had been. I'm glad you enjoyed yourself. We all know there's only "ONE" New York City. Nothing else like it. Hope you got to the company reunion at 75/33, and visited Rescue 3s new quarters. (I was supposed to be the "Guest Speaker" but had other prior commitments). Anyway, Glad everything went well for ALL you guys.
  Just one more thing, can you tell us where the Brooklyn Memorial is that you referred to ? Some of us may want to visit it.
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on December 05, 2010, 10:28:08 AM
Here's the website for The Brooklyn Wall of Remembrance Bill:

http://brooklynwall.org/index.htm (http://brooklynwall.org/index.htm)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 05, 2010, 11:46:13 AM
Here's the website for The Brooklyn Wall of Remembrance Bill:

http://brooklynwall.org/index.htm (http://brooklynwall.org/index.htm)

  Thanks very much Garrett for posting this. The video certainly tells a story. And as one speaker put it, "I will NEVER Forget".

  I plan to visit that Brooklyn Wall of Remembrance with my wife this spring.

  Thank you.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on December 05, 2010, 01:05:58 PM
"kidfrmqus".......46/27 are only a couple of blocks south of their old house. R-3 was in the old house (don't remember from what year...can anyone help?? ) until recently when they moved to their new house. NFD can tell you some buff stories from those companys from back in the day. Bathgate Industrial Park area caught plenty of work. I read on here somewhere about Con-Ed running new utilities in this vacant, burned out area back then while the rest of the area was burning. Somebody knew something !!!!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 05, 2010, 01:34:22 PM
RESCUE 3 BRONX
ORG. 341 E. 143rd St. At L-17 (Jun. 1, 1931)
RELOC. 1781 Monroe Ave. At E-42 (Nov. 1, 1948)
RELOC. 3134 Park Ave. At E-71 (May 14, 1951)
RELOC. 1781 Monroe Ave. At E-42 (Jul. 23, 1968)

RESCUE 3 MANHATTAN
RELOC. 515 W. 181st St. At E-93 (Aug. 8, 1968)

RESCUE 3 BRONX
RELOC. 453 E. 176th St. FQ L-58 (Jul. 1, 1992)

http://www.nyfd.com/cityhist.pdf (http://www.nyfd.com/cityhist.pdf)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Bxboro on December 05, 2010, 01:41:47 PM
Thanks Mack !!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on December 05, 2010, 02:07:22 PM
"kidfrmqus".......46/27 are only a couple of blocks south of their old house. R-3 was in the old house (don't remember from what year...can anyone help?? ) until recently when they moved to their new house. NFD can tell you some buff stories from those companys from back in the day. Bathgate Industrial Park area caught plenty of work. I read on here somewhere about Con-Ed running new utilities in this vacant, burned out area back then while the rest of the area was burning. Somebody knew something !!!!!!
  Yes, the Bathgate Industrial Park is located on what once was a densly populated area known as the Claremont Park section. It was literally almost entirely burned out during the "War Years". I remember back in the mid 60's when Bathgate and Washington Avenues in the 170's looked like the Lower East Side (Delancey St.) with pushcarts and ragshops. After the 1980's it was a ghost town and the city decided to turn it into an industrial park so Con Ed upgraded the electric grid to support a greater load from industrial use. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on December 06, 2010, 07:19:17 PM
An update on my reply # 847 above......I came upon this last night in the bar while looking at a free copy of the N.Y. Piece Of Shit Trash......not many spend or should spend money on the  n. y.  post s anti union rag....however here is a Coney Island related story that may be of interest ......Titled  "Boardwalk Biz Brawl".....QUOTE.....The operators of Coney Island's new Luna Park are freaking out over eight longtime boardwalk businesses' refusal to be evicted, and want the courts to give them the boot.       Zamperia USA this week filed suit against Shoot The Freak, Rubys Bar & Grill and others that were served eviction papers last month and told to get out by Nov 19. The suit demands that they vacate immediatly or pay $2,000 a day in penalties.    " We are not going anywhere ", Shoot The Freak and Beer island owner Anthony Berlingieri told the post yesterday. "We did nothing wrong . We paid our rent on time , made Coney Island  a success before Luna Park got here, and now we are being thrown out like animals". UNQUOTE.........i believe the Luna Park he is refering to is the present corporation not the original part of history........as stated before ...bloombag is behind destroying some more of Real N.Y......if "Shoot the Freak" is allowed to remain in operation i have some good candidates to be the Freak.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 08, 2010, 10:01:17 PM
I recently met with John Bendick. He's a retired member of the FDNY after 37 years on the job. He's one of those guys, like a few others on here, that I refer to as "The Greatest Generation of Firefighters". We met at a restrauant and talked for hours. He also had his son John with him, who is also a member of a very busy FDNY Engine Co. John Sr also has another son Tommy (owner of this site) on the FDNY, and another son, named Mike, on a busy N.J. Fire Dept.
  Something else I didn't realize during those busy War Years. During the Adaptive Response time, which I believe started around 3 PM.  Some busy Ladder Companies, an added firefighter was hired between the hours of 6 PM and 12 Midnight. They rode in the telephone booth on the side of some of those Ladder Companies.
  As I was talking with John Sr I realized that I was talking to a person who probadly fought more fires in his time than most of us can even think about. Meanwhile, his son John Jr is probadly fighting more fires today than most firefighters across the world. Although the entire night, about the only fire they ever mentioned was when John Jr fought a fire where he recieved burns through his hood and bunker gear. The fire was on the first floor, and "pep holes" in the doors were melted three floors above from the heat. Because of those burns, John Jr was out of work for four months. But he still loves going to fires and loves the job.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on December 09, 2010, 10:01:16 PM
I started this in another forum after an All Hands was posted for box 709 but since it got further than that box i moved it to here..........
      

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A bit of trivia......present location of BKLYN box 709 is Flushing Av Opposite Garden St.......prior to the bldg of the "Bushwick Houses" around 1960 the location was Flushing Av & Morrell St.........Morrell St. ran from Flushing Ave to Moore St. & is now wiped out by the projects......there also was a box 3758 at Cook & Morrell which is gone (the box # has been re-assigned to 7 AV 900 'south of 92 St BKLYN nowheres near).......701 was Moore & Morrell.....701 is now Moore 75 ' West of Bushwick all are just around the corner practically from the old Siegel St qtrs. of LAD*108 where i started riding in '61 & was appointed to in '68.......another 3700 box 108 was 1st due at was 3757 Varet & White Sts.......another not too distant one but out of our 1st alarm area was 3755 Evergreen & Green Aves & 3756 Evergren & Palmetto......all the other boxes in 108 s area were 3 digit.  
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: lucky on December 09, 2010, 10:19:58 PM
If you continue a few more blocks down Evergreene to Palmetto St. you'll come across box 3755 and I think there's a 42 hundred box between 237 and 206.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 811 on December 10, 2010, 04:47:57 AM
Also wasn't Bogart & Rock a 3700? Maybe 3755 or 3756 in the old days?

277 was Grand & LaGrange Sts long after Eastern District High School was built and LaGrange Street removed.

(http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i16/alvin201/1929brooklynlagrangehyde2-48.jpg)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: JOR176 on December 17, 2010, 11:03:50 PM
I started this in another forum after an All Hands was posted for box 709 but since it got further than that box i moved it to here..........
      

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A bit of trivia......present location of BKLYN box 709 is Flushing Av Opposite Garden St.......prior to the bldg of the "Bushwick Houses" around 1960 the location was Flushing Av & Morrell St.........Morrell St. ran from Flushing Ave to Moore St. & is now wiped out by the projects......there also was a box 3758 at Cook & Morrell which is gone (the box # has been re-assigned to 7 AV 900 'south of 92 St BKLYN nowheres near).......701 was Moore & Morrell.....701 is now Moore 75 ' West of Bushwick all are just around the corner practically from the old Siegel St qtrs. of LAD*108 where i started riding in '61 & was appointed to in '68.......another 3700 box 108 was 1st due at was 3757 Varet & White Sts.......another not too distant one but out of our 1st alarm area was 3755 Evergreen & Green Aves & 3756 Evergren & Palmetto......all the other boxes in 108 s area were 3 digit.  


Chief , you are correct here and in additon Box 330 was located at Seigel & Leonard until the Lindsey Houses cut off Seigel St. Box now located on Leonard BET Moore and Boerum Sts.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: JOR176 on December 17, 2010, 11:06:55 PM
Also wasn't Bogart & Rock a 3700? Maybe 3755 or 3756 in the old days?

277 was Grand & LaGrange Sts long after Eastern District High School was built and LaGrange Street removed.

(http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i16/alvin201/1929brooklynlagrangehyde2-48.jpg)

811, yes you are correct also. in the mid 50's  box 3755 was Bogart & Ingraham, box 3756 was Bogart & Rock.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on December 18, 2010, 12:26:17 AM
811....in your reply # 868 you are correct about 3755 & 3756 in the old days.....i forgot about them....(JOR they remained as such into the '60s)....Bogart & Rock is now 295 ........277 at Grand & LaGrange was a working box in the '60 s during vacate & demolition of the large site in order to build Eastern District High School.......many jobs in those blocks then....the old "premium pay for doing demo in a burnout" was a factor there just as it was in all of the other School & Project sites in the day.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: lucky on December 18, 2010, 11:49:47 PM
Plenty of demolition work also at 354 box, Bdwy. and Flushing. Odd response in that one section of 217 was asigned third due and the other section first on the second, the only such response that we had. Both sections wound up there together many nights. I also remember 346 box always being transmitted but I can't remember the location because it wasn't one of our boxes.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: JOR176 on December 19, 2010, 11:07:55 AM
Plenty of demolition work also at 354 box, Bdwy. and Flushing. Odd response in that one section of 217 was asigned third due and the other section first on the second, the only such response that we had. Both sections wound up there together many nights. I also remember 346 box always being transmitted but I can't remember the location because it wasn't one of our boxes.

346   Humbolt & Varet   I know 68jk09  turned out to that box a ton as well as
345   Humbolt & Seigel
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bennetj on December 20, 2010, 06:32:44 PM
We used to travel from the Hartford area to buff the city.  This was back in the mid 70's and of course one of our places was the Big House on Interval Avenue.  We stopped in one Sunday, unaanounced and ended being invited to dinner.  Surprisingly the companies made it through the dinner.  The bells did finally toll and the place emptied out.  The four of us took 20 minutes of out time to clean the kitchen as a token of thanks.  Later that afternoon, the house captain arranged a visit tot he Bronx CO for us.  Talk about controlled chaos!  The one thing I remember is one of the guys answering the phone took a prank call.  He dealt with it very matter of fact - he hung up!  He mentione dthat if there was a real problem, the idiot would call back.  Indeed the idiot did call back no more than two minutes later.  And the sign hanging in CO - "Pay your taxes on time - we need our welfare check!" said it all.  By the way, 31's had an American LaFrance tiller that was missing the complete rear fender on the driver's side.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on December 20, 2010, 07:06:33 PM
Was the Captain Bill Grimes?  He was a class act!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 811 on December 21, 2010, 07:16:43 AM
Plenty of demolition work also at 354 box, Bdwy. and Flushing. Odd response in that one section of 217 was asigned third due and the other section first on the second, the only such response that we had. Both sections wound up there together many nights. I also remember 346 box always being transmitted but I can't remember the location because it wasn't one of our boxes.

346   Humbolt & Varet   I know 68jk09  turned out to that box a ton as well as
345   Humbolt & Seigel

For "bad" boxes, don't forget 344 - Graham & Moore,  347 - Graham & Cook.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on December 21, 2010, 08:49:47 AM
Quote
For "bad" boxes, don't forget....

In my mind 1661, Blake & Amboy, stands head & shoulders above them all.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on December 24, 2010, 12:39:09 AM
The demolition work at 354 that Lucky referred to in reply #872 above included 354 Flushing & Broadway as well as 355 Sumner & Hopkins (now Garvey Blvd/Sumner Av bet Broadway & Ellery St.)...356 Park & Sumner....358 Throop & Floyd (now Throop Av 175 Ft So of Park Av)....359 Throop & Ellery.....360 Throop & Flushing.... these boxes ringed the vacate & demolition area where Woodhull Hospital sits today it was a multi block area consisting of frame dwellings ....commercials... a Synagogue ....& tenements.....the vacates as well as the fires started around the beginning of '68.....in April '68 when Martin Luther King was killed several of the bldgs in the area were torched ....including a fourth on April 8 at Sumner & Hopkins.....the Fires continued sporadically thru '68 & '69 as the vacates & demo continued (myself & many others gained personal experience in our firefighting craft in these blocks) until the whole area was levelled.....it was a long legal process to vacate a large area such as this or other project / urban renewal areas thruout the city......usually it was a bldg  here & there not leveling a whole block all at once ....you might have 3 vacants then 2 occupieds etc ...or more dangerous was when you had a large tenement w/ many vacant apartments & others still occupied....if utilities were cut off in one bldg... elect would be jury rigged from another bldg or a light post...it was not uncommon to see gas being piped from 1 floor to another or 1 bldg to another via rubber garden hose.....as i said ....this took place in almost all of the urban renewal situations in nyc in the '60s/'70s.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on December 24, 2010, 01:20:47 AM
In regard to my reply # 864 a page ago concerning Coney Island.....i just learned from a poster on another site that the "Shoot the Freak " concession on the boardwalk had been bulldozed last night w/out the owners knowledge.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on December 24, 2010, 05:59:07 AM
After my first ride with the FDNY in Brooklyn on Rescue 2 in 1968, Brooklyn became my favorite Boro to listen to nightly on my newly acquired crystal controlled scanner. For those who are not aware, in those days there were no programmable scanners. You had to buy and install a small crystal for each channel you wanted to listen to. In my case, it was an eight channel scanner with five crystals for FDNY and the rest two local FD and one local PD. Brooklyn Fire would be Non Stop. I'd stay up as late as 3 AM and the activity was still going strong. I remember hearing those many locations that Chief "68jk09" mentioned in the above post. In fact, just as most FDNY members knew those box numbers and locations, I knew many of them also, just by hearing them so often.
  My father (RIP Smoke), who was a Firefighter on the job in Bridgeport, CT would even sometimes come into the my room and be amazed at the amount of fires and activity going on. I remember how he was also so impressed with hearing those Progress Reports. In most other places you would only hear it reported as a "Working Fire". After that Nothing. With the FDNY you could picture Exactly what was going on. Another thing was that the FDNY was one of the first that you could hear units calling because of the use of "Repeaters". Strange, but I could hear the FDNY Companies calling from Sixty miles away, but couldn't hear the local companies calling from Six Miles away. The FDNY was just so way ahead of everybody else, even in the late 60s.
   And as I started buffing down there, seeing electrical wires jury rigged from one building to another, or directly from a light pole was a pretty common thing as the Chief "68jk09" says. Not counting the Arson, no wonder there was so many fires.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: firstdue2dq on December 25, 2010, 12:47:59 AM
After my first ride with the FDNY in Brooklyn on Rescue 2 in 1968, Brooklyn became my favorite Boro to listen to nightly on my newly acquired crystal controlled scanner. For those who are not aware, in those days there were no programmable scanners. You had to buy and install a small crystal for each channel you wanted to listen to. In my case, it was an eight channel scanner with five crystals for FDNY and the rest two local FD and one local PD.

My grandfather passed down his crystal controlled scanner to my cousin and I. We've got a few crystals but the only one we use is for the Hartford Fire Freq. It's in our apartment and you can hear it clearly from pretty much any room, still works perfect after many years of use. Best house warming gift a kid could ask for  ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: memory master on December 26, 2010, 04:02:04 PM
I still have a "MonitorRadio" from Lafayette electronics. Radio itself is in great shape but all it receives is static. I guess it finally needs tubes.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on December 26, 2010, 07:28:36 PM
I still have a "MonitorRadio" from Lafayette electronics. Radio itself is in great shape but all it receives is static. I guess it finally needs tubes.

Don't throw it out!  It's a piece of history.

My first buff radio was also a tunable tube job from Lafayette.  Ran it constantly day and night, much to
the annoyance of my parents.

I think that MonitoRadio was a sub-brand of Regency sold in Lafayette stores.   I remember seeing them on a number of housewatch desks in the 60's and a little later.

After the tunables, and before scanners, came a few crystal controlled rigs from Sonar, such as the FR-103 portable and the FR-105 mobile/base rig (still have one of them floating around somewhere!). Their factory was at 73 Wortman Avenue in the Borough of Fire (that's Brooklyn, for you Bronx guys!  ;D) They moved on into making scanners, along with their competitors Regency, Tennelec, HyGain, Electra-Bearcat, and a few others whose names escape me.  Newcomer Radioshack seems to have outlasted them all.

Thanks for the memory jog!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on December 26, 2010, 07:35:59 PM
I still have a "MonitorRadio" from Lafayette electronics. Radio itself is in great shape but all it receives is static. I guess it finally needs tubes.

Don't throw it out!  It's a piece of history.

My first buff radio was also a tunable tube job from Lafayette.  Ran it constantly day and night, much to
the annoyance of my parents.

I think that MonitoRadio was a sub-brand of Regency sold in Lafayette stores.   I remember seeing them on a number of housewatch desks in the 60's and a little later.

After the tunables, and before scanners, came a few crystal controlled rigs from Sonar, such as the FR-103 portable and the FR-105 mobile/base rig (still have one of them floating around somewhere!). Their factory was at 73 Wortman Avenue in the Borough of Fire (that's Brooklyn, for you Bronx guys!  ;D) They moved on into making scanners, along with their competitors Regency, Tennelec, HyGain, Electra-Bearcat, and a few others whose names escape me.  Newcomer Radioshack seems to have outlasted them all.

Thanks for the memory jog!

I still have an FR 105 in a storage drawer in my garage, I bought it from Firecom Communications when they first became available. They were excellent radios.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on December 26, 2010, 10:09:40 PM
I believe that Firecom was operated by Brooklyn Disp. Mike Espo (a/k/a "the turtle").  He would always individually check out everything he sold, so the buyer would be sure to get nothing with factory defects.
Wow.  That goes back a while!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on December 26, 2010, 10:56:57 PM
I got a midland crystal hand held from mike around '76 i believe.......I have every radio i ever got ....starting with a Harron Labs Fire Pal late '50s up to a Uniden Bearcat BC560XLT programable.....about 15 different models in between mostly crystal & mostly still working .........in the early sixties my friend had a Harron Labs Fire Pal for his car.....the one in a perforated metal box rather than the table model in maroon plastic...he had it in his '49 plymouth & it was set up for six volts.......another friend borrowed it one time & put it in his '57 pontiac but he didnt realize it was a 12 volt system.......boy did that radio light up as it fried.......i have an original Sonar FR 105  6 channel manual crystal controlled as shown in someones previous post......i also have one of Sonars first scanning models as well as an original Lafayette crystal controlled manual car only unit........a real simple & dependable 2 channel crystal non scanning unit about the size of a pack of cigarettes i have is a Radio Shack model.......& several other models ..............someone mentioned stuart electronics in QUEENS .....he is still there & has been there forever but if you are dealing with him you better know your shit or he will sell you what HE wants.....when i got out of the USMC Sonar had started making their first scanners ...i went to stuart to buy one & he said "you dont want a scanner in NYC its too busy....buy one of the manual FR105s"  so i did.......i found out later he was trying to unload his manual units since scanners were taking over.......lesson learned.

Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on December 27, 2010, 02:49:58 AM
....starting with a Harron Labs Fire Pal late '50s up to a Uniden Bearcat BC560XLT programable.....about 15 different models in between mostly crystal & mostly still working .........in the early sixties my friend had a Harron Labs Fire Pal for his car.....the one in a perforated metal box rather than the table model in maroon plastic...he had it in his '49 plymouth & it was set up for six volts.......

I had a Harron Labs hand held. I think it held five crystals. That was my first crystal controlled unit.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on December 27, 2010, 07:59:12 AM
The tune able radio in the firehouses for a good number of years in the late 50's - early 60's was either the Fire Pal, or the S-95 Civil Patrol by Helicrafter (check spelling).
Regency had a mobile radio that the cystals had to be soldered in place. When The Bronx was taken off of the Manhattan frequency in the later 60's & switched onto Staten Island, if you got the wrong cut cystal, either high or low, for the frequency, you were able to listen to TV Channel 31 & ON THE JOB training program for FDNY right in your own car. THOSE WERE THE DAYS!  How about BRONX DISPATHER 40?  Remember that voice????? Or even "BRONX DISPATCHER 7" ??????? If you do, you are really showing your age!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: raybrag on December 27, 2010, 10:14:15 AM
It was Hallicrafters, Chief.  In the photo below, fourth shelf down on the far right is the S-94 Civic Patrol.  Was that the one?

(http://webzoom.freewebs.com/wa6dij/Hallicrafters%20shelf.jpg)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on December 27, 2010, 10:18:27 AM
Yes it was. I think the '95' model was for high band.  Boy that brings back memories. Thanks!!!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on December 27, 2010, 01:30:46 PM
Atlas ....since you mentioned receiving tv over the radio...here is some of my ramblings from another site awhile ago...the last few sentences deal w/the opposite.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Years ago when "tapping in" was still in effect .....we had some Dispatchers who were partial to our Co (single Truck).......while a box or phone alarm was being recd. in their office ......one of them would click the taps a few times ....& the HW would turn us out way before the last digit of the box came in on the bells (1st or 2nd due)......as soon as the last # hit we were out the door.... seem to remember 11-11 s at 0830 & 1730 as well as 0900 & 1800..... also years ago certain establishments in close proximity to the F.H. would pick up static on their AM radio... each click could be counted as the box was being sent. ....& any Member in a Co. for awhile had all the box locations commited to memory.....as a kid i lived about 3 blocks from one of the Dispatch Offices...we did not have a TV initially but a neighbor did.....i accidentally found out that if you put Channel 4 NBC on the TV then played w/the focus knob it would recieve FD audio.....they never understood why when they had me over to watch TV the picture was always out of focus.......they thought i had vision problems. 


Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 3511 on December 27, 2010, 03:48:17 PM
I remember 11/11 at noon in the Bronx, and occasionally anytime if testing the circuits.

Three rings on the HW phone from the dispatcher to turn out the first due CO's on a phone alarm for a structural fire.

Ever hear the box number get messed up and the dispatcher just keep pounding the bell, then stop and start the sequence all over again?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on December 27, 2010, 04:33:10 PM
Correct me if wrong, but I remember 11-11 rung at 9AM and 6 PM; I believe the bell at Noon was just 2.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: bklyndisp54 on December 27, 2010, 06:29:12 PM
Correct me if wrong, but I remember 11-11 rung at 9AM and 6 PM; I believe the bell at Noon was just 2.

Correct.  "2" at noon.  The other daily sig's were those two rounds of 11 on both the primary and secondary circuits.  I think we also sent a single 11 at 830am and 530pm.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on December 27, 2010, 06:37:31 PM
I remember 11/11 at noon in the Bronx, and occasionally anytime if testing the circuits.

Three rings on the HW phone from the dispatcher to turn out the first due CO's on a phone alarm for a structural fire.

Ever hear the box number get messed up and the dispatcher just keep pounding the bell, then stop and start the sequence all over again?
YES, that happened quite often :D
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on December 27, 2010, 09:21:55 PM
Its funny that around NYC & I have to assume that the Fire Pal & some of the other well known radios were always found in fire stations or with buffs. But when you got away from the big cities, you would most likely find PLECTRON radios. Maybe some volunteers on Long Is, or up-state had them, or even the vol depts that are located in NYC might have used them. They were used as part of the dept's alerting system. By some people they were advanced for their time.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 29, 2010, 10:04:26 PM
This might not fit in this thread, but here is a good collection of Newark FD from the 50s and 60s:
http://www.newarkfd.com/index.php?view=category&catid=11&page=1&catpage=16&option=com_joomgallery&Itemid=73#category (http://www.newarkfd.com/index.php?view=category&catid=11&page=1&catpage=16&option=com_joomgallery&Itemid=73#category)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mikeindabronx on December 29, 2010, 10:18:50 PM
Thanks for the link, vintage photos are great to look at.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 811 on December 30, 2010, 10:20:13 AM
This ad is from 1961 Fire Engineering, and yes, I did have the Fire Pal.  I lived in a smaller city then and a radio friend in school adapted it where any (rare) night transmissions on the tuned frequency would activate a light and buzzer to wake me; but then any noise or static would do so it wasn't 100% effective.

Like the chief, I also messed up a TV tuner with the set screws behind the channel selector knob trying to get the FD frequencies.

(http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i16/alvin201/AD1961firepalradio.jpg)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 811 on December 30, 2010, 10:41:09 AM
Here's another that probably pre-dates Harrons FIRE PAL and FIRE REPORTER, it is a tunable "POLIC-ALARM" and in the 1950s my local firehouse had one near the watch desk tuned to the FD frequency.  Great for us kids who would walk in after they had a run, and hear where they went and what was going on.

Judging by the dial it looks like they came in VHF low and high bands

(http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i16/alvin201/policealarmradioasatE5.jpg)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on December 30, 2010, 11:56:50 AM
In the 1970s, the truckers' CB radio craze spread across the country.  Many people bought CB radioes to communicate on the highways, pass on information about gas availability during rationing and warn other drivers about traffic, accidents and speed traps. No cell phones back then.  Some FDNY firehouses had CB radioes and monitored them for traffic accidents/car fires.  For example, E166/L86 picked up a lot of SI Expressway verbal alarm runs that way.  It was a more accurate location than someone pulling a box miles away from the actual accident.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 69 METS on December 30, 2010, 05:44:18 PM
Here's another that probably pre-dates Harrons FIRE PAL and FIRE REPORTER, it is a tunable "POLIC-ALARM" and in the 1950s my local firehouse had one near the watch desk tuned to the FD frequency.  Great for us kids who would walk in after they had a run, and hear where they went and what was going on.

Judging by the dial it looks like they came in VHF low and high bands

(http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i16/alvin201/policealarmradioasatE5.jpg)

We had one of those in our kitchen when I was a kid. I wish I still had it for nostalgia purposes.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kidfrmqns on January 04, 2011, 12:06:51 PM
A few months ago I had asked about an old firehouse on Metropolitan Ave in Brooklyn not too far from the Queens border. I can't locate the info again. Could someone please remind me what companies were there and exactly where it was. I know its been closed since at least 1980.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on January 04, 2011, 12:40:14 PM
A few months ago I had asked about an old firehouse on Metropolitan Ave in Brooklyn not too far from the Queens border. I can't locate the info again. Could someone please remind me what companies were there and exactly where it was. I know its been closed since at least 1980.
Engine 206
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: lucky on January 04, 2011, 12:55:01 PM
206 Engine was on Metropolitan Ave., between Varick and Stewart Aves. It was a block or so east of the drawbridge and about a block from their new quarters. They were one of the last two piece engines, through the late seventies.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: vbcapt on January 04, 2011, 01:38:19 PM
ENGINE 206 BROOKLYN ORGANIZED AS ENGINE 6 , BROOKLYN FIRE DEPT
ORG. 14 High St. FQ Vol. (Sep. 15, 1869)
NQTRS. 189 Pearl St. (Aug. 1, 1892)
CHANGE To Engine 6, FDNY (Jan. 28, 1898)
CHANGE To Engine 106 (Oct. 1, 1899)
CHANGE To Engine 206 (Jan. 1, 1913)
NQTRS. 1196 Metropolitan Ave. (Jan. 1, 1915)
NQTRS. 1201 Grand St. (Dec. 6, 1976)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on January 04, 2011, 03:42:46 PM
Notice that before 1913 they were on Pearl St. in downtown Brooklyn near the Brooklyn Bridge which was then a densly populated area. They were located close to E205, E207 and E208. Ladder 103 was also in that neighborhood before moving out in 1932 to Sheffield Ave., East New York.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kidfrmqns on January 04, 2011, 04:14:45 PM
Thank you guys for the info.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: kidfrmqns on January 04, 2011, 04:26:51 PM
Was there ever a truck with either 237, 218, 230 or 217? Seems a rather large area with no truck company, especially as busy as this area was in the war years.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: lucky on January 04, 2011, 05:20:43 PM
There was never a truck with those engines although there was one between them. The chief can elaborate more on this subject.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on January 04, 2011, 05:31:19 PM
Upon checking, there were no trucks in quarters with any of these four engines, however, Eng 230 was in qtrs with L-102 for almost 4 years (1946 to 1950).
In Qtrs with Eng 237 was Sq 7; Eng 230 did share their qtrs with Squad 3; & Engine 217 had a second section during the war years. Remember all fire houses were not built to house both an engine & a truck at the same time.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on January 04, 2011, 07:23:55 PM
  Ladder 108 was centrally located when they were at their old home, 112 Seigel St. (Seigel Eagles). It had them almost equally distant between Engines 216, 230 & 237. That symetrical balance was lost when they moved west with E216. ;) Another note: back then, they hardly ever relocated so they could be counted on being around or covered.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on January 04, 2011, 08:13:26 PM
The only "assigned relocation" that we had on the "cards" was to relocate to LAD*102 on the Fifth for box 992... Vanderbilt Av & Park Place.......we did however from time to time .....have some "requests" honored from our good friends in the BKLYN C.O.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on January 04, 2011, 09:29:10 PM
Thanks 68jk09, I'm a Bronx buff but I knew they were always covered except for that one rare occasion. ;)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on January 05, 2011, 10:52:19 PM
An interesting point on how times have changed. And I think "mikeindabronx" will find this espically interesting because he rode with Eng 69/Lad 28/ and Batt 16. Several of his photos are from these companies (www.fdnysbravest.com (http://www.fdnysbravest.com)). Last year in the 16 battalion there were No Second Alarms for the entire year. During the War Years and the busy 80s, they were one of the busiest battalions for several years throughout the city. We compare that to the 15 Battalion in the North Bronx today. One of the Slowest Battalions during the War Years and into the 80s. Now "the 15" is one of the busiest.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on January 05, 2011, 11:29:16 PM
Remember that the 15th Batt's response area was reduced years back when the 27th Batt moved to Eng 79. This also cut down on the 19th Batt too, but then Batt 16 has had no reduction in their response area.  Years back, companies in the 15th Batt were also a good source for helping to provide coverage & were used for relocations. The same hold tue for the 54th Batt units in Queens.  Things due change in time.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on January 06, 2011, 10:04:43 AM
Some of my rig shots that "r1SmokeEater" was good enough to take the time to post on EMTBRAVO for me awhile back. Thanks Jamie. Hope this works out okay. Plus a few Extras that others took. "Do you Remember these" ???

  Sorry my friends, "if you remember these, you probadly aren't really as young as you may think you are" ! ! !

    http://www.emtbravo.net/index.php/topic/32645-fdny-old-apparatus/ (http://www.emtbravo.net/index.php/topic/32645-fdny-old-apparatus/)

  "mack", page 5 has a photo of TL 119 you had asked about on another thread. Regarding the writing on front of the rig.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: svd385 on January 06, 2011, 11:53:21 AM
Great pictures... and yes, I do remember some (quite a few) of those style rigs.  I am as old as I think I am, even remember riding some of those as an auxiliary.  I never did figure out just what the plywood or the chain link fencing on the tillers were suppose to stop now but back then I never gave it a thought. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 68jk09 on January 06, 2011, 07:04:25 PM
Bill....Ecellent photos...Thank you.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on January 06, 2011, 09:01:07 PM
Bill - Thanks for the great pictures.  It is great to look at the rigs and the creative unit logos, numbers, decorations and paint jobs.   
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on January 06, 2011, 09:31:33 PM
Thank You. I appreciate all the good words. But it's time for a little confession. "Bless me Father for I have sinned". Of those pictures that are marked "NFD 2004" Photos, I did NOT take about 10 of those photos. I believe they are photos # 1, 2 (?), 3, 4, 5, 7, 19, 20, 25, 31, and 45. I did do the rest however.

  Way back when, I had a good friend who took those pictures using color slides, and we would trade. So that's how I got them. When I made up the disk for Jamie (r1SmokeEater)to post these for me, they were on the disk that I had sent him.

  At any rate, I do hope you enjoy them. For me it brings back a lot of memories.

 And Chief J.K., I've been told that you may have a special interest in that photo of Engine 41 (Lime green Rig). It is my understanding that you were the Officer to have a big part in forming "The Enhanced Engine 41". Actually the very beginning of Squad 41. When Enhanced Engine 41 was organized, it became a favorite area for me to hang out. It was a very busy area and easy to cover the South Bronx and Harlem. As Rescue 3 used to refer to it as "The Best of Both Worlds"

 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on January 12, 2011, 10:21:03 PM
On April 23, 1987 the FDNY responded some 60 miles north east to Bridgeport, Ct. There they were joined with members of the Dade County and Fairfax County Fire Depts as the Urban Search and Rescue Teams were just being formed. All three had been requested by the Bridgeport Fire Dept because of the collpse a building under construction called L'Ambience. It was to be Two 13 story buildings using a construction method called "Lift Slab Construction". In a matter of minutes, one of the metal pins used to hold concrete slabs to be used as a floor, collapsed. This resulted in many workers trapped in this unfinished building. It was way beyond what the Bridgeport Fire Dept could handle. Within a short period of time, The FDNY, Dade County, Fairfax County, and Bridgeport Fire Fighters were all working together to locate any survivors under that pile.
  In the end, after 9 full days, 24 hours a day, a total of 28 workers were killed and 39 injuried. Shortly after this incident, The FDNY Urban Search and Rescue Team was formed called NYTF-1. It was also shortly after the Dade County and Fairfax County Fire Dept USAR Teams had returned from a Major Earthquake in Mexico City.
  And my brother George working his First Day as Lt on Bridgeport's Ladder 5, never thought he would end up being the First Due Ladder Co Officer responding to Bridgeport, Cts Worst Diseaster ever to hit that city. Or that he would be working side by side with the FDNY, Fairfax or Dade County Firefighters.
  If you like you can read alittle more about it on... http://www.ctfire-ems.com/showthread.php?t=12060&highlight=collapse+bridgeport&page=7 (http://www.ctfire-ems.com/showthread.php?t=12060&highlight=collapse+bridgeport&page=7) (Post # 67)
  
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on January 12, 2011, 10:32:16 PM
Willie D: I was working for a bank in Bridgeport on that day.  I was at lunch on upper Main Street when the call came in.  I heard Bridgeport PD send all available cars to the scene.  When I arrived, they were still pulling out survivors, but that did not last long.  Unbelievable scene of the collapse; many surrounding area FDs also responded, such as Fairfield FD.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on January 12, 2011, 10:44:21 PM
John, I left work that day about 5 PM. Did the hour and a half ride, and when I got there, I couldn't believe seeing a FDNY Battalion Car parked next to Bridgeport's Squad 5. Of course we know recently that the FDNY has responded to Haiti, and New Orleans within the last few years. But I have to guess, up until this time (4/87) they had never gone this far (60 miles) before.
 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: 811 on January 13, 2011, 05:19:18 AM
On 10/16/1955 FDNY sent mutual aid to Danbury, Connecticut to assist with serious flooding.  A total of 150 firemen and auxiliaries, 22 Ward LaFrance CD pumpers, and additional units such as Searchlight 23, GOU 12, Fieldcom, and busses of relief personnel responded.  Convoy assembled at Engine 89 quarters for the trip, which by my calculations is further than Bridgeport. (See WNYF January 1956)

Another long distance Mutual Aid was to the Great Baltimore Fire in 1904 (see WNYF 1966/4). Engine Companies 5, 7, 12, 13, 16, 26, 27, 31, 33, and H&L 5 responded.

(http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i16/alvin201/19551016mutualaiddanbury.jpg)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on January 13, 2011, 08:06:28 AM
Thanks "811". I was never aware that the FDNY responded to anywhere in Connecticut, except Bridgeport. But as a 6 year old kid, shortly after those floods, we took a ride up to the Danbury area. It was our outing for the week. Maybe my father, who I referred to as "Smoke" (see: Our Role Model, in National), just might have wanted to see the FDNY in Action for himself.

  And maybe my good friend, "Johnd248" was around when the FDNY responded to the Great Baltimore Fire, but I sure know I wasn't. Maybe John can elorborate. ???

   Thanks "811", for taking the time to post those pictures and telling us that story.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: johnd248 on January 13, 2011, 09:15:47 AM
NAAAYYY!!!
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on January 13, 2011, 09:23:13 AM
From what I remember reading, FDNY went to Baltimore via trains. But FDNY also went into Delaware County, NY at lease two times to assist with floodings. That area is part of our water supply system.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: guitarman314 on January 13, 2011, 11:09:20 AM
All the companies, including Ladder 5, that responded to the Feb. 8, 1904 Baltimore fire were double companies except Engine 7. Engine 7 was still at 49 Beekman St.(future home of E32 then later on E6) but they became a double compnay the following year (1905) when they moved into their present home, stately "Duane Manor".
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on January 13, 2011, 02:38:52 PM
Now I need help with this -  before FDNY gave up the Super Pumper, I was told that the pumper & tender was being used by the U. S. NAVY at the sub base in Conn. Can any one add on to this?
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on January 13, 2011, 03:13:55 PM
Superpumper and Tender were officiallyplaced OOS on October 25, 1982. The Superpumper was stored at the Fire Academy but was loaned to the US Navy at Norfolk Va for a period of time but was later returned.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: grumpy grizzly on January 13, 2011, 03:26:42 PM
A little more SPS info. The tender was restored and is in a private collection in CA. the pumper had cosmetic restoration and is located at a fire museum in Mi. check out toyandfirereuckmuseum.org.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: Atlas on January 13, 2011, 04:50:45 PM
Thanks for the update, & your info is correct. Again Thanks for fulling in the blanks.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: raybrag on January 13, 2011, 06:39:33 PM
I was stationed at Langley AFB from 1980 to 1984.  NASA had a wave generator on the AF base in a building that was about 100 ft wide and 1/2 mile (yes, MILE) long.  It was on the water on one side. It was used to study simulated ocean waves.  One day in 1982 or 1983 I was walking around this building while getting some lunchtime exercise, I turned the corner of the building by the water and there, sitting in all of its glory, was the FDNY Super Pumper (the pump trailer only) with its Mack tractor.  I have no idea what the Air Force or NASA were doing with it or how long it was there, but there it was.  It was the only time I was ever up close and personal with it. (For those who don't know, Langley AFB is just across the harbor from Norfolk and the big Navy base there.)
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: mack on January 13, 2011, 07:06:45 PM
(http://img441.imageshack.us/img441/4521/91349346.th.jpg) (http://img441.imageshack.us/img441/4521/91349346.jpg)

Superpumper is located in the Antique Toy and Firehouse Museum in Bay City, Michigan

http://www.toyandfiretruckmuseum.org/ (http://www.toyandfiretruckmuseum.org/)

They call it the "one and only the NYFD Superpumper".

It looks like the Supertender is privately owned and does parades in California.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: anesti on January 13, 2011, 09:07:18 PM
there is probaly a better chance of me hitting the lottery then what i am going to ask. Is their any video anywhere on earth of these 2 in there heyday with the fdny responding to a job??? I can just imagine both engines of these thing roaring at the same time must have been deafening. Or an eyewitness account from someone here who has witnessed it responding. Still cant envision these 2 monsters rolling through some of these streets with the gridlock traffic and idiot drivers. 
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on January 13, 2011, 09:28:04 PM
(http://img441.imageshack.us/img441/4521/91349346.th.jpg) (http://img441.imageshack.us/img441/4521/91349346.jpg)
Superpumper is located in the Antique Toy and Firehouse Museum in Bay City, Michigan
http://www.toyandfiretruckmuseum.org/ (http://www.toyandfiretruckmuseum.org/)
They call it the "one and only the NYFD Superpumper".
It looks like the Supertender is privately owned and does parades in California.

 Mack, its great to see that Super Pumper looking so good. If only it was in NYC. Thanks there "Raybrag" for the story of the FDNY Super Pumper after it retired from those Busy War Years. And Anesti, I'm with you about looking for a video of the Pumper and Tender Unit responding. Although I've seen it operate a few times. If I remember somewhere on this site a member reported his father was a Lieutenant assigned to it. I think it was Member "JJFlood" who's father that was.
Title: Re: My younger Buff years
Post by: nfd2004 on January 15, 2011, 09:35:56 AM
Once Again, our good friend "Mikeindabronx" has added another page to his EXCELLENT PHOTO COLLECTION. This time he has added Page # 13 to his Famous Historic Collection. I am very Thankful that these photos have preserved the very busy days of the 1980s.
  So take a look back into History and see what it was l