Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Annual Report 2017: Franklin Fire Department

The Annual Report is compiled and published each year to be ready for voters to obtain at the November election. A PDF copy is also posted online and available for viewing our downloading. 

The following is a text representation of the printed pages 84-85 (actually 91-92 of 264)


Fire Headquarters
40 West Central Street
Franklin, Massachusetts 02038
(508) 528-2323

The Department
The Franklin Fire Department is divided into two divisions: Operations and Maintenance, which is the largest and responsible for dispatch, emergency medical services, fire suppression and hazardous materials response. Administration and Support Services is responsible for personnel, budget and finance, training, code compliance and coordinating the Town’s emergency preparedness.

Our Mission
The mission of the Franklin Fire Department is to: Have a positive impact in the lives of citizens and visitors of Franklin in their time of crisis by providing compassionate, contemporary, community driven services.

Safeguard human life from the perils of fire, sudden illness, injury or other emergency medical condition, natural and man-made disasters as well as preserve the environment and property from ensuing destruction. Be responsible for a safe, productive and pleasant work environment for our employees, and provide them opportunities to gain new skills and advance their personal career goals.

Operational Objectives

  • Initiating advanced life support to patients within 10 minutes of receiving the telephone call at our communications center.
  • To access, extricate, treat and transport and transport trauma patients to a level one trauma medical facility within one hour of the occurrence of the injury.
  • Interrupt the progression of fires in structures within 10 minutes of open flame ignition.
  • To insure response readiness remains greater than 70%.
  • Provide safety and survival skills for all school students in grade K through 5 consistent with the Student Awareness Fire Education (SAFE) initiative
  • of the Commonwealth.
  • Provide educational opportunities for department members to insure optimal performance and safety.
  • To develop and maintain “best practice” to insure personnel and citizen safety.
  • Insure fire safety through timely, consistent code compliance services to all external customers.
  • Provide all department services in a manner that satisfies the needs of our customers.
  • Process emergency notifications in our dispatch center within 120 seconds of receiving the initial call for 99% of all calls.

Message from the Fire Chief
Fiscal Year 2017 ended as the busiest year in department history, with 4,150 emergency responses. Fortunately, the community did not suffer any fire related deaths this year, although there were several tragic incidents which resulted in the loss of life. Department members suffer two loss time work related injuries during the fiscal year. The department continued to see the impacts of opioid related incidents throughout the community. We applaud the work of the SAFE Coalition, Norfolk County Sheriff Michael Bellotti and District Attorney Michael Morrissey for their continued support and resources to provide family assistance during times of crisis.

The department enjoyed the award of two grant initiatives during the Fiscal Year. The first was in the amount of $65,000 from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to provide department personnel with hearing protection. With the Support of Representative Jeff Roy, Senators Karen Spilka and Richard Ross the department was able to purchase hearing protection which also allows for wireless communications with the two-way radio system. These devices will greatly reduce the effects of hearing loss for firefighters. The next grant was from the FEMA in the amount of $ 219,000 will be used to replace the department’s cache of Self Contained Breathing Apparatus.

We continue to see the number of calls for service that occur back-to-back or simultaneously grow at an alarming rate. Back-to-back or simultaneous calls are where the department receives another emergency call for service while managing a call for services (two at a time). In Fiscal Year 2017, this caused 200 ambulance responses from other Towns into Franklin. The increasing use of out-of-town resources causes delay in our ability to provide timely transport to the hospital emergency room. Franklin’s average response time is 5 minutes, 44 seconds; the average response time for an out-of town ambulance is 12 minutes, 33 seconds – this time difference can have a great impact on the quality of patient outcomes for people with medical emergencies.

The trend of call distribution is compounded by the increasing calls for services. As previously noted, the department responded to 4,150 emergency responses in Fiscal Year 2017, an increase of nearly 9% from Fiscal year 2017.

We believe the trend is in response to an upturn in our economy. This year saw increased occupancy rates in the Town’s Industrial Parks as well as opening of new businesses and facilities. All of these combine to bring more people into the community and increase the demands for our services. We will continue to monitor all of these trends and work with the community to develop strategies to maintain acceptable levels of emergency services within the Town.

Di Ana Baker
The department experienced the sudden loss of Dispatcher Di Ana Baker. Di had been a department dispatcher since 2000. Her energy, vibrancy and
willingness to assist the community will be greatly missed.

This year saw the retirement of three long term employees, Firefighter Robert Tucci; Firefighter Richard Leitch and Firefighter Leo Gallagher. Firefighter Tucci began his career with the department in 1988 and assisted in many department roles. Bob’s career with the department was cut short as a result of a line of duty injury. Firefighter Leitch was with the department for 23 years at the time of his retirement. He was also forced to end his career early due to a long term illness. Firefighter Gallagher retired from the department in December 2016 after nearly 18 years of service. We thank them all for their years of their dedication and service to the Town and wish them the best in retirement.

This year we welcomed new members Becki Carloni, Kathryn Forest and AJ Morris. All come to the department with a wide variety of experiences that
strengthens our ability to provide services to the citizens of Franklin and we look forward to their long productive careers with the department.

In addition to emergency response, the department also continued to try to expand its fire prevention education activities, providing safety and survival education to the most vulnerable population to fire – our children and seniors. Through the dedicated efforts of SAFE Officer Keith Darling, the department reached over 7,600 individuals with safety related programming. This included 100% of all Elementary Students, summer YMCA Camps and various Boy and Girl Scout programs and tours as well as a various activities at the Senior Center. This year the department continued to offer home visit for our senior citizens and include 48 visits. The focus of these visits is to insure there are working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, remove trip hazards as well as provide safety education. Firefighters Kevin Marshal, Bill Blanchard and Christian Mills provide dedicated assistance in completing this important service to our citizens.

In closing, I would like to recognize our employees, who are among the best fire service professional in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts! They continue to work tirelessly to protect life and property within Franklin. In addition to their on-duty responses, our employees commit countless hours in continuing education and training targeted to maintain and improved upon their emergency skills. Additionally, they continue to press forward in attempt to provide the highest level of service to the community based upon advancement in the fire-rescue field and advancements in technology. They continue to be the chief reason for maintaining our current the level of success and level of services we provide our citizens of Franklin.

Respectfully submitted

Gary B. McCarraher, Fire Chief"

Annual Report 2017: Franklin Fire Department
Annual Report 2017: Franklin Fire Department

You can find the online copy at the Town of Franklin webpage

and specifically for 2017

No comments:

Post a Comment