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In Memory
Posted on October 17th , 2007

We recently received a phone call from a 20-year resident of Palm Beach County who told a story that hits close to home for us all. Mr. Bill Herms had a 19-year-old nephew that was a volunteer member of the Sharon Hill Fire Department in the suburb of Philadelphia, Pa. The firefighter, Michael Reagan, was part of a crew that was fighting a garage fire at a residence and had just successfully extinguished the fire when the wall of the garage collapsed on top of him and two other crewmembers. The other two firefighters were injured but survived. Unfortunately and tragically, young Michael did not. At Mr. Herms' request, we are posting a link to a portion of the Sharon Hill F.D.'s website that has been set up as a memorial to their fallen firefighter. There is an area set aside for readers to leave their condolences. Our hearts go out to Michael Reagan's family and friends. We can all relate to this type of tragedy and it brings about another reminder about how dangerous our jobs can be and about how careful we must be at every emergence call, even at seemingly simple house fires.

For those that are interested, please go to this link:

Apartment Fire In Royal Palm BeachApartment Fire In Royal Palm Beach
Story and photos by Capt. Don Delucia, PIO. Posted on October 17th , 2007

On the morning of October 17th a fire broke out in an apartment in Royal Palm Beach. Around 7:15 am, calls were coming in to the dispatch center advising smoke was pouring out of apartment 108 in the Greenway apartment complex. Units found smoke and fire coming from the bedroom area of the apartment. The fire was quickly extinguished but the residence is totally uninhabitable. The Red Cross was called the assist the apartment's two residents. Among the units on scene were: E28, E21, R28, EMS2, DC2, PI1, Q29, E34, R21, EMS3, BC2, DC3, LA34, R29.

Riviera Beach Water Main Break & SinkholeRiviera Beach Water Main Break & Sinkhole
Story and photos by Steve Collins, MPA. Posted on October 16th , 2007

Command 81 assists City of Riviera Beach on October 11th, at the scene of a water main break and subsequent sinkhole, at Blue Heron Blvd. and Avenue F. The leak could not be isolated for over 24 hours, due to the lack of gate valves in the aging water line. Department of Public Safety (EOC staff) and Fire Rescue Water Officer provided technical assistance.

Turnpike Signal 4Turnpike Signal 4
Story and photos by Scott Jurasz. Posted on October 15th , 2007

October 12th, 2007-Osceola County FL, While returning from this year's Florida fallen Firefighter Memorial members of the PBCFR Pipes and Drums and Honor Guard rolled up on an accident on the turnpike involving two vehicles with heavy damage. The accident happened on a remote area of the turnpike in Osceola Co, resulting in a extended response from the area fire department. On scene with limited resources, members of the band and guard stayed with and comforted the injured until responding units arrived, and assisted with patient care with on scene units. Two patients were extricated from one vehicle and trauma-alerted to area trauma centers via two medevac helicopters.

Vehicle vs. House in West Palm BeachVehicle vs. House in West Palm Beach
Pictures and story by Lazaro R. Acosta. Posted on October 11th , 2007

The West Palm Beach Fire Department responded to a van vs. an occupied home at the location of Division Ave & 22 Street. On arrival, the residents were quickly accounted for; the driver of the van was transported to a local hospital. Due to the instability of the home, a "collapse rescue response" was special called for by the Captain of Ladder Co. 1.

The following companies operated at Division Avenue and 22 Street:
Ladder 1, Squad Co. 4, Engine 1, Rescue 1, USAR 4, Rescue 4, District 1, EMS 11, Collapse and Trench Trailer.

Veronica E. Juliano
Posted on October 4th , 2007

Palm Beach County Fire Rescue Pipes and Drums had the honor of being in attendance for the memorial of Veronica (Vee) Juliano. Veronica Juliano was afflicted with muscular dystrophy since the age of 2 and passed away this week at the age of 23. Veronica was a camper at the MDA summer camp held in Brandon, Fl where PBCFR and Local 2928 sent members as camp counselors for kids with muscular dystrophy. Veronica was definately one of the kindest and most warm hearted young ladies a person could ever meet.

PBCFR Pipes and Drums met Vee in the past, and had the oppurtunity to play for her, at the summer camp. It was our honor to be at her memorial to say goodbye to such a wonderful person. Despite her challenges with muscular dystrophy, Vee was also a truly talented artist. Please take a moment to visit her website at http://veronica-art.com.

On behalf of the Pipes and Drums and Honor Guard, we would like to express our condolences to the family of Veronica Juliano. She will be missed by many friends and family and it is all those who will miss her that are grateful to have been her friend and apart of Vee's life.

Anthony Acosta Returns from IraqAnthony Acosta Returns from Iraq
Story and photos by Capt. Don Delucia, PIO. Posted on October 4th , 2007

Our own Tony Acosta has returned from yet another tour of duty in Iraq. Tony and other returning Marine Reservists received a warm welcome from family, friends and co-workers. Two of the returning Marines were firefighters. One from PBCFR and the other was from the Town of Palm Beach. The local media was on hand to captue the event for the community.

Fatal Crash Between a Train and a Tractor Near Palm  Beach/Martin County LineFatal Crash Between a Train and a Tractor Near Palm Beach/Martin County Line
Story and Photos by Mark Carr. Posted on August 28th , 2007

A collision between a New York bound Amtrak passenger train and a Bobcat forklift stopped rail traffic for several hours along the CSX tracks in northwestern Palm Beach County on August 27th. Palm Beach County Fire-Rescue's Engine 14, Rescue 14 and District Chief 1 responded along with Engine 64 from Palm Beach Gardens Fire-Rescue.

None of the 192 passengers on the train were injured but the driver of the tractor died as a result of the crash. A heavy-duty wrecker from Sisters Towing was called in to remove the tractor from the swampy canal between the CSX tracks and State Road 710 near Indiantown Road.

Fatal Accident in Belle GladeFatal Accident in Belle Glade
Story and photos by DC Curtis Rice. Posted on August 20th , 2007

In the early morning of Aug 19th, units from the 7th Battalion were dispatched to a traffic accident at Hooker Highway and Main street in Belle Glade. The initial dispatch information was that possibly 4 people were trapped. Due to this report 2 engines, 2 AMR Med units, DC7, Commander 4 and Trauma Hawk 1 responded.

AMR's Medical 41 was first to arrive and reported a one car MVA with heavy damage, 2 occupants, one being a fatality. The auto was west bound on SR80 when it crossed Main Street. Hooker Highway is the Western extension of SR 80 in the Glades. The car struck a very large concrete power pole at the front end towards the passengers side. The impact tore the engine out of the car. The driver was able to be removed without extrication and was transported to the Trauma Center by TH1.

Units on scene, AMR Med 41, Commander 4, PBCFR DC7, E73, TH1. PBSO and FHP were also on scene.

Station 33  Thinks "Outside the Box"Station 33 Thinks "Outside the Box"
Posted on August 20th , 2007

The Customer Service Team would like to acknowledge the exemplary actions of Station 33 B-Shift. It is clear to us that these crew members displayed what it means of us when we intend on “going the extra mile” for one of our fire rescue customers. In addition, the engine and rescue company members worked together on developing a plan through improvising solutions that might be viewed as "outside the box."

Apparently R33 rolled up on a stranded invalid whose motorized wheelchair (Lark) had broken down in the hot South Florida sun one blazing afternoon a few weeks ago. By the time R33 crew made contact with the citizen, he had been in the heat for about 30 minutes already. Fortunately he was okay and there was no medical need; however, the crews needed some means of getting him home safely. Rescue Lt Pardo called for reinforcements from E33 back at the station where they utilized one of the FF's own personal vehicle (large pickup truck with open bed) in order to get the motorized lark home as well. The stranded man, who's weight was very heavy, was loaded on the rescue stretcher due to his unambulatory status without his transport. The crews took the man home and right into his apartment as well as delivered the Lark to the front office of the apt. complex as well. They decided to network with the property management officials so that a repair technician from the company could come out and make the necessary repairs right there.

Thanks go to all involved including our very own, Jim Hernandez who serves as one of our committee members as well as CSR (Customer Service Rep) for the Recruit Academy. For everyone else, Frequent Fire Miles will be awarded to the following members: RLT Dan Pardo, PM Mike Medley, PM Jason Ruffing, LT Dennis Peek, DO Jon Ferguson, and PM Scott Eddy!

Seven Victim Roll-over Accident on US-27Seven Victim Roll-over Accident on US-27
Story and photos by DC Curtis Rice. Posted on August 20th , 2007

On Sunday August 5th 2007, the pager went off at Station 74 for a traffic accident, roll over, on US Hwy 27 at the Broward County line. Initial information was that a single vehicle had rolled multiple times and that 3 people had been ejected. Due to the fact that the accident was reported to be 25 miles south of station 74 and the potential number of patients was high, both Trauma Hawk 1 and 2 were requested to fly. Districe Chief 7 contacted PBSO dispatch directly via TAC 13A for more information. The update was that 7 people were ejected, not 3, and that the SIG 4 was a few miles north of the county line. AMR's Commander 4, Mark Keating, was also monitoring the PBSO channel and called for an additional Med unit and requested mutual aid from Broward County Fire. DC7 Contacted Broward County Fire Battalion 55 via cell phone to update them and coordinate the response.

DC7, Chief Curtis Rice, was first to arrive and established 27 command. Due to the number of vehicles that had pulled over to help, the scene was not visible from the roadway. Upon exiting the vehicle, DC7 was confronted by multiple bystanders requesting more help and helicopters. DC7 made a rapid assessment of the scene. An SUV apparantly had rolled several times. Five victims were initially found lying near the SUV with an additional pediatric patient found 30' from the vehicle. Making matters worse, there were aproximently 30 people assisting the injured or just walking around the scene. PBSO began securing the scene. After the situation was updated to dispatch, an in-depth assessment was started. An additional patient was found (he had been moved from the area). There was a total of 7 patients, of which 3 were trauma alerts. E74 arrived and was directed to began packing the most critical Trauma Alert. Medical 41 arrived and took care of the pediatric trauma alert. Broward County Battalion 55 arrived and advised that they had an engine, 2 rescues and their air rescue responding. Battalion 55 assigned the first arriving engine to begin care of the third trauma alert. By this time Commander 4, Medical 42 and BCFR Rescue 67 had arrived and were assigned to assess and package the remaining patients. PBSO secured an area on northbound US27 south of the incident for the helicopters to land. Trauma Hawk 1 landed first with Trauma Hawk 2 next. Broward County 's Air Rescue 85 was eventually cancelled.

All the agencies worked very well together. The ability to get a large number of rescuers on scene in a relatively short period of time, even in a remote area made the situation much better for the patients involved.

Units on scene- PBCFR DC7, E74, Trauma Hawk 1 and 2, AMR Commander 4, Medical 41 and 42, BCFR Battalion 55, Air Rescue 85, Engine 67 and Rescue 67. Law Enforcement included units from FHP, PBSO and BSO.

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