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A Boston Herald article published this week introduces us to Camp Bailout, a day camp west of Boston where girls who want to pursue a career in firefighting can go to learn about the skills needed for a promising career as a first responder.

 

Lyn Moraghan, a lieutenant with the Ashland Fire Department, wanted to give girls the feel for what a firefighting career entails, and founded the camp in 2011. At Camp Bailout, young women receive guidance and mentorship from women who have chosen firefighting as their profession.

 

As of 2014, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reports that about 7 percent of U.S firefighters are women. The camp does not teach the girls how to run into burning buildings but rather focuses on how to use a fire extinguisher, the handling of a powerful fire hose, and water rescue strategies, among other critical fire and emergency response skills. Female campers also learn about the reality of 24-hour shifts, time away from their family, and the importance of ongoing training.

 

This is not the only all-girl camp that provides firefighting training according to Kim Cox, executive director of the International Association of Women in Fire and Emergency Services. The organization lists eight more camps on its website.

 

Camp Bailout is a great place to start for girls who are passionate about firefighting and interested in pursuing a career as a first responder.

NFPA has issued the following errata on NFPA 11, Standard for Low-, Medium-, and High-Expansion Foam, NFPA 20, Standard for the Installation of Stationary Pumps for Fire Protection, and NFPA 85, Boiler and Combustion Systems Hazards Code:

 

  • NFPA 11, Errata 11-16-1, referencing 4.7.2.10 and 4.7.4.2 of the 2016 edition, issued: 7/13/2016
  • NFPA 20, Errata 20-16-1, referencing various section of the 2016 edition, issued: 7/13/2016
  • NFPA 85, Errata 85-15-2, referencing 6.4.2.1.6* and A.6.4.2.1.6, issued: 7/13/2016

 

An errata is a correction issued to an NFPA Standard, published in NFPA News, Codes Online, and included in any further distribution of the document.

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Settling into my cramped seat at Boston's Fenway Park last week--beer in one hand, popcorn in the other--I watched one of my idols grace the Jumbotron. He was not donning a Red Sox uniform, but rather a neatly wrapped bath towel around his head.


A one-day-only showing of Ferris Bueller's Day Off at Fenway was the perfect ender to a summer night. (My haiku summation of this 1986 classic, for those who sadly haven't seen it: Teen boy takes "sick" day/opts for fun outings with friends/gives key life lesson.) More importantly, the movie was a reminder of the joys of rule-breaking.

 

Now I'm not condoning illegal behavior or playing hooky from work. (You're welcome, HR.) What I am trying to highlight is Ferris' think-outside-the-box mentality. In Ferris' world, a good day is a terrible thing to waste. On his day off, he trekked into Chicago, rode a sports car, caught a foul ball at a Cubs game, chowed down on a swanky dinner, and participated in a danceathon to the Beatles' "Twist and Shout" during a parade. ("Shake it up baby, now!") If he played by the rules, none of this would have been possible.

 

How does this relate to us in the fire safety world? We can continue to do the same thing day in and day out, or we can alter our habits. We can start to think differently. Live differently. Work differently. Act differently. Advocate for safety differently.

 

An example: I recently attended Canada's first summit on home fire sprinklers. This country mimics the U.S. when it comes  to setbacks requiring sprinklers in new homes, but one of their biggest hurdles is battling opponents in the homebuilding industry. Rather than bring together all fire service supporters for sprinklers for this summit, our Canadian friends (with NFPA's support) did something different. They invited Ontario's homebuilders to the table and gave them a day's worth of education. All of the myths they had heard on fire sprinklers were countered by facts. They participated in healthy dialogue on the topic. One builder even said, "I will walk away from [this summit] with more information than I have ever gotten [on fire sprinklers] at this point."

 

How powerful is this type of education? I've interviewed two American builders this year (here's one of them) who told me all it took for them to change their opinion on fire sprinklers was a healthy conversation with a safety advocate on the facts.

 

Fire sprinklers might not be your forte, but is there a way to somehow find or embrace your inner Ferris? How can you promote fire safety in a way that's not the same ol' same ol'? How can you reach your audience with messages that are getting through? Take a page from Ferris' book--start challenging the status quo.

 

This post was written by Fred Durso, Jr., communications manager for NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative. Follow him on Twitter @FredDursoJR.

Earlier this year Matt Klaus, NFPA's Technical Lead, hosted the first NFPA 25: Standard for the Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems hands-on training class and according to those who participated, it was a resounding success. How successful, you ask? Well, just read what one of the attendees had to say: "I think this was the best class I ever attended in 30 years in the industry!"

 

Because of its success and the request for more training sessions, on Monday, August 29 - Wednesday, August 31, 2016 NFPA will be bringing this class back to Cranston, Rhode Island. Participants will not only get the chance to gain knowledge in the classroom but they'll also get hands-on training in a lab setting. Attendees will also be able to review the 2014 edition of NFPA 25 chapter by chapter with Matt, and then apply what what they’ve learned on actual equipment.

 

 

There's nothing better than being able use the tools you learn and apply them to your job immediately, right? So join us! The class is popular so register now before it's too late.

 

Want some additional information before you hit "send" to register? The video above provides a great overview of the class from Matt himself. Give it a watch then read more about the training in our catalog. We hope to see you in Rhode Island!

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Steven Sawyer, NFPA's Fire Code Regional Director and the International Fire Marshal Association's Executive Secretary received a very large honor at our recent NFPA Conference & Expo in Las Vegas.

 

In only the 9th award presentation since it's inception in 1969, Steven was the recipient of the Percy Bugbee award on June 12th for his notable, significant and enduring contributions to fire safety.

 

Get the complete story by reading our recent news release, and leave your well-deserved congratulations for Steven below in the comments!

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