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LODD: Lairdsville, New York

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  • LODD: Lairdsville, New York

    Anyone with anymore info on this training accident death please post it here. Only thing I've read is that it was an apartment fire RIT scenerio that went bad.
    My prayers and thoughts are with you in Lairdsville.

    be safe brothers
    Be safe brothers

  • #2
    My prayers and thoughts go out to the families of the fallen brother and his two injured brother firefighters.

    Tom Drennan
    Oswego County, NY

    Never Forget 9-11-2001

    Stay safe out there!

    IACOJ Member


    • #3
      Here is the text of an article. My comments follow:

      New York Firefighter Perishes In Training Exercise

      The Observer Dispatch

      WESTMORELAND -- Investigators are trying to determine how a training exercise fire burned out of control Tuesday night, killing a Lairdsville firefighter and seriously injuring two other volunteers.

      Bradley Golden, 19, of McQuade Avenue, Clinton, died on the second floor of a vacant house at 7355 Route 5 as smoke and flames quickly filled the structure about 7 p.m. He was pulled from the wood-frame building by firefighters and rushed to St. Elizabeth Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead, authorities said.

      An autopsy performed Wednesday night at St. Elizabeth Medical Center showed Golden died of asphyxia due to smoke inhalation, Oneida County Coroner Mark Bentz said. Golden’s death was ruled accidental, he added.

      Adam Croman, 19, son of Lairdsville Fire Chief Lance Croman, jumped from the second floor of the burning structure. Benjamin Morris, 19, was pulled from the second- floor area by firefighters. Croman and Morris suffered burns and other injuries and were airlifted to the burn unit at University Hospital in Syracuse. Croman was listed in serious condition Wednesday night and Morris was listed in fair condition, a hospital spokeswoman said.

      A steady stream of Lairdsville volunteers and supporters checked in Wednesday at their Norton Avenue station to discuss the tragedy. Croman stopped by briefly before visiting his son in the hospital. Croman described the training session as a "rapid intervention team exercise" conducted by the Lairdsville, Westmoreland and Lowell fire departments.

      "We were simulating having down personnel and the other two companies were going in to get the down personnel," said Croman, who was able to speak with his son after the incident.

      "He told me he pushed them toward the stairs and he jumped out the window with a full pack on," Croman said. "For some reason we don’t know, the other two didn’t make it out."

      Adam Croman and Morris were experienced members of the Lairdsville Fire Department, each with several years service. Golden had been with the department about one month and was a provisional member, officials said.

      "He just joined (September) 20th. He was only on two controlled burns and now he’s gone. It’s sad that we have to lose young guys like that," said fire company Vice President John Klein.

      Golden was enthusiastic about being a firefighter and helping others, Croman said.

      "He loved it. He thought this was the greatest thing in the world," Croman said. "Somebody had asked him where he was living and he told him jokingly that he was living at the firehouse."

      Investigators from the Oneida County Sheriff’s Department, the state Office of Fire Prevention and Control, federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration and other agencies went through the charred red structure Wednesday.

      "We’re working with all the agencies to find out what happened," said sheriff’s department Lt. Joseph Lisi. Robert Walsh, first assistant chief and safety officer at the Westmoreland Fire Department, said Wednesday controlled fires were set on the first and second floors. The fire on the first floor got out of control, went up the walls and staircase of the structure and trapped the three men upstairs, he said.

      "The couch just started burning out of control and it went right up the stairs," Walsh said.

      Tuesday night’s fire was started on the first floor in a queen-size sofa bed, while the fire on the second floor was ignited in a container, Walsh said.

      About 10 firefighters were on the scene when the fire flared up, Walsh said, with water close at hand and constant radio contact being maintained.

      "It was the same drill situation as before, but something went terribly wrong," Walsh said.

      It was at least the third training exercise at the vacant home on Route 5, which was scheduled to be taken down in a controlled burn exercise in October, Klein said.

      Lairdsville was in charge of the drill, Walsh said. The fire company has been taken out of service, with neighboring companies answering Lairdsville’s calls, officials said.

      "It’s somber plus here right now," Croman said. "Our department is out of service until the funeral, at the very least."

      Adam Croman attends Onondaga County Community College and studies fire protection services while serving as a Moyers Corners firefighter, his father said.

      John Talerico, a former Lairdsville firefighter and a friend of Croman, was one of many who stopped by the firehouse Wednesday.

      "He was going to be a professional," Talerico said. "He was dedicated. This is what he was going to be." Morris, he said, recently enlisted in the Marine Corps and planned to begin service in December.

      The American flag was back at half staff Wednesday outside the Lairdsville and Westmoreland fire stations, after having been in the same position for several weeks in honor of the victims of the terrorist acts Sept. 11 in New York City and elsewhere.

      "A lot of firefighters are shook up. Everyone’s devastated," Walsh said.

      At the fire scene Wednesday, neighbor Christine Stockbridge stood at her door and surveyed the nearby charred structure where Golden died.

      "Nobody in the world would dream this would happen," said Stockbridge, who once lived in an apartment in the burned-out building.

      Stockbridge said her grandson is a Clark Mills firefighter. She appreciates the sacrifices they make. "You wouldn’t want them to quit," she said.

      Contributing: Observer-Dispatch reporter Bill Farrell


      this story breaks my heart because this kid did not have to die. There have been at least three, serious, live burn training incidents involving deaths or serious injuries that mirror this incident. One was in Milford Michigan, one was in Boulder, CO and one was in Parsippany, NJ. In each and every one the people running the drill did not recognize the hazards of heat release rates and flashover. That is what happened here. What is the thought process behind someone lighting a sofa bed on fire in an acquired structure to "create smoke".

      Am I bashing? You bet. In my incident, three recruit fire fighters recieved disabling burns when they were sent into a school bus, with metal plates welded over the windows with a foam rubber couch burning in it, as a "smoke house". The bus flashed over and trapped the men. My agency presented a case to the Grand Jury seeking to charge the instructors with Aggravated Assault and Attempted Murder. The grand jury instead issued a presentment that ended up changing the face of fire service training in NJ.

      I wrote an article on this case that appeared in the March 1994 issue of Fire Engineering Magazine. Here's the last paragraph of my article.

      "This incident and the firefighter injuries were caused by a foreseeable series of events resulting from a disregard of safety procedures and standards by the fire officials involved. The mistakes made in this incident have been made before and will be made again unless an effort is made to educate the fire service community and strengthen existing regulations. Perhaps this incident can be the impetus behind that change."

      I wish I weren't so right.


      • #4
        First let me say I am sorry to the families of my brother firefighters. I pray for Brad's soul, and Adam and Ben's recovery. Also I feel for the dept., as the recovery for them will be hard and long.

        George, I can honestly say I agree with you. I have posted on here before as to why I have always agreed with burn buildings. Totally life like, no, but adequate to stay sharp with basics, yes. As a fire service instructor myself, it is my responsibility if teaching in the academy or a course for the safety of my firefighters. In the instance in upstate NY, from what I understand from friends in NY OFPC, they used the firefighters as live vicitms on the second floor. Also in my opinion the age of the victims must also be taken into account. How much experience at age 19 could they possibly have had, and did that come into to question. I'm not totally bashing but, obviously things were done that should not have been. Like lines upstairs to protect them, and the stairwell. Also every live burn (which I haven't done one in over 2 years now) that a class I've taught into have used, we always cut a vent hole to aid in prevention of flashover, and protected the stairs.

        The above is my opinion only and doesn't reflect that of any dept/agency I work for, deal with, or am a member of.


        • #5

          Go to the other thread on this subject and read the information I received from an inside source that happened to chat with the others that survived.

          I also say...God bless you and keep you..My prayers are with the families.
          09-11 .. 343 "All Gave Some..Some Gave ALL" God Bless..R.I.P.
          IACOJ Minister of Southern Comfort
          "Purple Hydrant" Recipient (3 Times)
          BMI Investigator
          The comments, opinions, and positions expressed here are mine. They are expressed respectfully, in the spirit of safety and progress. They do not reflect the opinions or positions of my employer or my department.


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