Archive for the ‘Public Relations’ Category

The Twin Cities Fire Service in the News – June 25

June 25, 2011 Leave a comment

Eagan’s New Safety Center/Fire Station In The News

The new fire safety center/Station 2 received a ton of news coverage this week when it had a grand opening and dedication. The $8.1 million building combined two fire stations into one, has several training features and is features green construction. Find more coverage here: Eagan Patch, Pioneer Press, This Week Newspapers

Final Interview With Richfield Chief Sveum

Richfield Fire Chief Brad Sveum talks with Richfield Patch’s Caitlin Burgess about 38 years in the fire service. Sveum, who retires this month, reflects on 29 year in Richfield and shares his most memorable moments. Read the interview here.

Brooklyn Center Receives Grant for Thermal Imager

The Brooklyn Center Fire Department has a new thermal imaging camera after receiving a $9,800 grant from the Firemen’s Fund Insurance Company. According to the Minnesota Sun Newspapers, the department’s current cameras are 15 and 17 years old. You can read the full story here.

Photographer Documents Live Burn in Lakeville

Lakeville Patch’s Paige Andrews photographed the fire department as they participated in a recent live fire training exercise at the ABLE joint training center in Burnsville. Check out the photos here.

There’s a New Fire Marshal in Town: Mendota Heights

Veteran firefighter Jim Lee was recently appointed fire marshal in Mendota Heights. According to the Mendota Heights Patch, Lee was a firefighter in West St. Paul and is now responsible for enforcing fire codes and conducting building inspections. Read the story here.

Fridley Police Beat Fire in Softball Matchup

The Fridley Police Department defeated the fire department with a 12-5 win in Friday night’s ’49er Days softball game. Fridley Patch reports that this was the first time the teams played each other in more than 20 years. Read the story and see the photos here.

Golden Valley Recruitment Drive

More than 20 people attended the first of three recruitment drives for the Golden Valley Fire Department. Check out Golden Valley Patch’s story and photos here.

St. Louis Park Fire Station Demolished

Construction crews demolished 40-year-old St. Louis Park Fire Station 1 recently. A video from St. Louis Park Patch shows the work underway and the website reports that it’s the first step in the construction of a new $15.5 million fire station.

Boy Scouts Learn About Fire from Stillwater Firefighters

Stillwater Patch covered an event where boy scouts were given a. Click here to see the photos.

See something that we’ve missed? Send an e-mail to and we’ll look into it.


Minneapolis Local 82 Looking for Tornado Clean Up Volunteers

Minneapolis Tornado, North Minneapolis, Disaster, Minneapolis Fire, Twin Cities, St. Paul Fire

Minneapolis Local 82 Photo

Minneapolis Tornado, North Minneapolis, Disaster, Minneapolis Fire, Twin Cities, St. Paul Fire

Minneapolis Local 82 Photo

Minneapolis Tornado, North Minneapolis, Disaster, Minneapolis Fire, Twin Cities, St. Paul Fire

Minneapolis Local 82 Photo

June 2 –The president of the Minneapolis Firefighter’s Union is looking for firefighters  to assist with a massive clean up effort North Minneapolis on Saturday.

Local 82 President Mark Lakosky said that firefighters will likely serve as team leaders for each clean up group. Officials are expecting to have 2,000 volunteers work in two shifts to complete much of the clean following the May 22 tornado.

The first shift is scheduled to work from 8 a.m. until noon. Volunteers need to be at Brookdale Mall (1108 Brookdale, Brooklyn Center) near the Macy’s store by 7:30.

Those interested in the afternoon shift need to be there by 12 p.m.

“It was great last week,” Lakosky said. “We must have had 15 chain saws running at the same time, cutting trees and clearing yards of debris.”

He said firefighters from all over the state, including Coon Rapids, Chisago, St. Paul and Winona jumped in to assist Minneapolis fire crews.

He asked that firefighters come prepared with heavy-duty footwear, gloves, eye protection and other essentials. He’s encouraging firefighter’s to wear their department shirts too.

Women’s Fire Service Expo to Aid in Twin Cities Recruiting Efforts

 North Star Women's Firefighter Association, Eden Prairie, Female Firefighter

Courtesy North Star Women's Firefighter Association

May 13 – The North Star Women’s Firefighter Association is preparing for their sixth annual Women’s Fire Service Expo that takes place on May 21. The event features a unique opportunity to recruit female firefighters for department’s in the metro.

Twin Cities Fire Wire spoke with NSWFA President Kimberly Cummings and she’s excited for the event. Cummings has been a career firefighter in Eden Prairie for 10 years.

The event is used as a recruiting tool, Cummings said. “It’s a chance for them to get hands-on with firefighting and see if it’s for them.”

The attendees are given an introduction to firefighting equipment and then suited up in a full protective ensemble. They go through live fire evolutions, extrication scenarios and have the chance to go though a physical agility test.

“They can come away from the day and say ‘I can do this’ or they can leave saying ‘this isn’t really for me,” Cummings said. “We’d rather have them know ahead of time if it’s for them.”

The idea for the annual expo came up when area department saw they were falling short in their recruitment efforts. “We were doing the typical recruiting efforts with flyers and meetings, but it wasn’t working.

Cummings said that many would attend the a general information session at their local fire department, but most would not return. This is just one opportunity for them to “get beyond the meeting enviroment and learn more about what firefighter really is.”

Since the first event six years ago, Eden Prairie has gone from three female firefighters to 10. The association doesn’t have any solid numbers on how many expo attendees have joined their local agencies as a result, but she feels that it’s made a certain impact on some woman.

The expo takes place at the South Metro Public Safety Training Facility in Edina from 7:30 – 12:30 on May 21.

She encourage departments in the Twin Cities metro to inform any potential candidates about the event and invite them to attend. The event is free, but attendees need to pre-register for the expo.

The North Star Women’s Firefighter Association has about 50 active members. Cummings said the group is focused on building mentors and networking among peers.

Fire Explorer Event Looking for Volunteers

April 29, 2011 Leave a comment

We received a request from the Minnesota Fire Exploring Association to spread the word as they are actively recruiting volunteers for this year’s Minnesota Fire Exploring Conference.

The event takes place on May 14 at the Columbia Heights Safety Center and begins at 8 a.m. More than 30 Minnesota Fire Explorer posts are expected to attend the event.

The group is looking for about 60 firefighters, officers and emergency medical professionals volunteers to help judge the competition, which consists of several fire and EMS events. Meals will be provided for the volunteers.

Please contact Maple Grove Fire Lt. Riley Slimmer at or by phone at 612-282-6061.

You can learn more about the future members of the Minnesota fire service by visiting

The Twin Cities Fire Service in the News – March 31

March 31, 2011 Leave a comment

First Responders Awarded for Life Saving Actions

Eight first responders were given life saving awards for their actions at a house fire in Apple Valley on Feb. 4. Firefighters Trudy Hagert, David Kennedy, Sam Seal and Nick Torrini started CPR on a resident after he collapsed while crews investigated a fire in his home.

Allina Paramedics Katie Kuenzi and Albert Reiff gave advanced cardiac life support intervention and police officers assisted in the save, Apple Valley Fire Chief Nealon Thompson told the Apple Valley Patch.

  • Read the story and view the video here.

Grant Provides Medical Training for East Bethel Firefighters

A 2009 Staffing Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant provided the funding to get half of the East Bethel Fire Department’s firefighters trained at the EMT level, according to

Chief Mark DuCharme said the $346,750 grant, which is spread over four years, provided the training for medical emergcnies, which accounts for more than half of the department’s calls.

“This is something we could not afford without the grant,” DuCharme told the paper.

  • Read the story here.

Edina Fire Blotter

The Edina Patch has published an extensive list of emergenicies that Edina fire crews were called to between March 14 – 20.

Firefighters responded to more than 70 EMS calls, several crashes and assisted area departments at two major incidents.

  • Read the story here.

South Metro Fire Looking at ‘Crash Tax’

The South Metro Fire Department is considering a “crash tax,” according to an article in the Pioneer Press

They are considering charing non-residents $577 for responses to serious accident scenes. This could open the door for additional fees at other rescue incidents.

Several departments in the metro have already implented simialr taxes. The article says that Minneapolis created $129,000 in revenue from such fees. St. Paul brought in more than $30,000 in fees.

  • Read the story here

Two Veteran Bethel Firefighters Retired

Fire Chief Shane Swedeen firefighter Gary Fox retired from the department after more than 60 years of responding to emergencies in Bethel.

According to ABC, Sweeden served for 20 years and Fox gaves 46 years of service to the community. Both joined the department after witnessing fires while they were young.

The two talk about the ups and downs of being a firefighter in the small community in the artice.

  • Read the story here.

Bethel Names New Fire Chief

David Arcand, a six-year member of the Bethel Fire Department, was tapped to lead the department in January.

The new chief talks with about his goals for the department, which operates on an annual budget of $28,000. He hopes to apply for grants, increase fundraising efforts and raise the department’s ISO rating, which is currently a nine.

  • Read the story here.

Rosemount Honors Emergency Responders

Rosemount named Fire Captain Mike Reis as firefighter of the year, the Rosemount Patch reports. He has been a member for 29 years and has served in several capacities.

  • Read the story here.


Minneapolis Firefighter Voted as Finalist in Awards Program

March 30, 2011 Leave a comment

March 30 – We have some great news on last week’s story about Minneapolis Firefighter Jacob LaFerriere. The injured firefighter is now a finalist for “America’s Most Wanted-All-Star 2011 Award,” that is given to those who go above and beyond the call of duty.

The public votes for the public safety professional that they feel is most deserving each week and LaFerriere edged out the others in the sixth week. There are two more weeks before the event ends.

He suffered serious injuries last July after he was forced to jump from a third floor window to the roof of a first floor porch. Local fire photographer and Extra Alarm Association member Steve Skaar caught the dramatic event in a series of pictures.

“After months of painful treatments and physical therapy, LaFerriere hopes to return to duty soon,” Assistant Chief Cherie Penn said.

America’s Most Wanted will be air a segment about LaFerriere this Saturday on Fox at 8 p.m. local time.

You can learn more about LaFerriere and the America’s Most Wanted-All-Star 2011 Award here.

Injured Minneapolis Firefighter Up For Award, Learn How to Vote

March 23, 2011 2 comments

March 23 – A Minneapolis firefighter is in the running for the “America’s Most Wanted—All-Star 2011 Award,” after his actions at a house fire last year.

Firefighter Jacob LaFerriere is still recovering from injuries that he sustained in a July 2010 backdraft, Assistant Chief Cherie Penn said. He was forced to jump from a third floor window to escape the fire.

He suffered a broken ankle, torn ligaments in his knee and third and fourth degree burns on his hands and still has not been able to return to work.

The award honors first responders who have gone above and beyond the call of duty and they are chosen by a public vote. The winner receives $10,000 and an All-Star weekend at a NASCAR event.

You can cast one vote per day until April 2 at this link.