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  • fire fighter suing

    I just read the article about the ff who is going to sue a homeowner. I think that is **** poor on his part to do such a thing. I wonder who told him that being a ff was all fun and games and there was no risk involved.I hope he loses his *** in court.His workers comp. payed off and he got some other payment for something.When it comes a day that a ff can sue a homeowner for stuff such as this its a dont say a lot about the fire service. People like this guy shouldn't even be in the fire service he's just looking for a free ride.Look at all the times us True fire fighter's went home with cuts,bruises,and no telling what else after a day at work and the only thing we wanted was to get back to work and do it all over again.Thanks for letting me vent on this matter. Tell me what you think on this stupid law suit.


    p.s,
    let me just say that this is my opinion and does not reflect the opinion of my dept.or anything else, i would hate to get sued for telling how stupid i think this person is.

  • #2
    I'm going to have to agree with you. Our cities and departments are insured for these exact reason - hence "Worker's Comp." Based on the article, this guys worker's comp picked up his medical expenses so I don't see how he can be suing to recover them.

    I think it is something we accepted when we took our jobs. There is an inherent 'unknown' that we face at every job, and the risk of injury or God forbid death comes with that unknown. If this fire was indeed accidental in nature, then I am embarrassed for this FF that he would take legal action to recover expenses that appear to have already been repaid. Had this been flat out Arson, then I may feel different since that would definitely be negligence.

    I don't know, it is always hard to comment from the outside looking in on a lot of these situations, but this sure does look like a reminder of what a lawsuit happy society we live, work and play in!! I suppose his partner will sue now claiming mental anquish from watching his partner blow out his knee????

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    • #3
      I agree if it was arson it would be a different story. He should have expected to find a mess in a shed, just look at all of the sheds, garages, and any other places we use to store stuff in its a mess. Everyone including us firefighters we just open the door and throw whatever it is in it and where ever it lands is where it stays until we need it again.Like you said before firefighting aint a "pretty boy's" job it does have risk involved.

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      • #4
        This is appalling. Certainly not what I would expect from a 'brother'. I hope he loses in court, and that he has to pay the homeowner's legal defense fees.

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        • #5
          I would also have to agree, I find it hard to believe that a ff would do something as obsurd as to sue a homeowmer. However I wasent there and dont know the full story on what happened so its hard to imagine what could have happened to make the ff think he had a justifiable suit against the homeowner. Like i said I wasent there and dont know but it sounds to me like he was working to hard trying to put out a structure that wasent worth saving(i.e. no life threatening situation) wasent watching where he was going and tripped over something. Like I said I wasent there.

          these are just my opinions take them for what they are worth

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          • #6
            I hope his department boots him. This will be damaging to his department as well as to the rest of us. Can you imagine the attitudes? We are supposed to be the ones they call for help, not to get sued - now they must feel like they are up against a wall.... damned if they do, damned if they don't. What next?

            ------------------
            Susan Bednar
            Forsyth Rescue Squad (Captain)
            NCTF-1
            Griffith Volunteer FD

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            • #7
              Let me come at this from another angle. I don't necessarily think that what the firefighter has done is justified, however I do feel that somewhere down the line property owners are going to have to take some responsibility for irresponsible acts. Here, in Florida, we're well aware of how fast fire travels and the damage it does to anything in its path.

              Only last month, someone decided to burn some yard trash on a windy day. The fire got away from him, and before it could be brought under control, it had burnt four mobile homes, two vehicles, and two barns. The man could be charged, and probably was, and have to pay for the firefighters time on the scene, and a fine. If the county is getting paid for firefighter's time, why shouldn't the firefighter get that money?

              I get so angry with ignorance, and it's ignorant to start a fire you can't control, and endanger the lives of firefighters and neighbors. Do I think the firefighter should sue? Maybe not, but it doesn't bother me that someone should sue them for negligence.

              Sorry, just my opinion, and I'm not a firefighter, but I am a homeowner and taxpayer.

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              • #8
                it's poo man. it's a sad day when firefighters sue. kinda makes me wanna say no i'm not a firefighter. hopefully he get kicked out of the fire service. and he pays the poor homeowner's legal bills, then they turn around and sue his ***. just my thoughts.

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                • #9
                  I too, like most on these forums, am a homeowner and a taxpayer myself however I still do not agree. How as a taxpayer you can agree with the practice floors me. Taxpayer's money in some shape or form contributed to this FD's or city's workers comp program. The program paid out the expenses and now on top of it this guy wants more from one of his 'taxpayers'??

                  I have a scar on my wrist from a bus fire a couple years ago from over extending myself to get a trapped passenger off. Should I sue the driver for hitting black ice and being negligent by crashing the bus creating a fire that has left me with scars that I see everytime I check the time on my watch? Maybe the passenger for failing to get off the wrecked, flaming bus therefore making me go in and get them?? NO, I accept the responsibility of my job. I attempt to restore order to the horrific chaos an accident creates in a civilian's life and if along that path, I get injured, then HELLOOOOOOO worker's comp. It's what it's there for.

                  Accidents happen to the best of us. It happened to this guy in Texas and now on top of that he is being sued by one of the FF's who hurt his knee because the guys shed was not neat and tidy. Whatever?!?! I disagree with the whole thought let alone following through on the act of filing the lawsuit?? If you want to file a lawsuit, file it against the county or whoever, for allowing open burns for the removal of leaves, trash, etc. It is a dangerous practice! They happen in my county too so I am not preaching from up on my high horse, but I still disagree with the practice due to the simple fact that once lit, a fire has the perpetual potential for disaster until it is completely extinguished.

                  Just a thought. Seems a little heated, but it's not, just in the mood to type!!

                  Stay safe! and check you're homeowner's policy. Make sure your covered in case one of your town's FF's decides to sue you for leaving your lawnmower in the middle of your shed floor for him to trip on.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    "I too, like most on these forums, am a homeowner and a taxpayer myself however I still do not agree. How as a taxpayer you can agree with the practice floors me. Taxpayer's money in some shape or form contributed to this FD's or city's workers comp program. The program paid out the expenses and now on top of it this guy wants more from one of his 'taxpayers'??"

                    You're absolutely right, taxpayers dollars do pay for the fire department, they keep the fire department going. I never said I agreed with what this fire fighter was doing. I believe I said there are instances where it would serve the property owner right if he was sued.

                    The example I gave and the example you gave are very different. Accidents happen, such as the bus accident you described. Ignorance, on the other hand, occurs when a property owner sets fire to a brush pile in an open field full of dead winter mulch, in the middle of a drought. The fire gets out and destroys other properties. That taxpayers ignorance came at a cost that could for all intents and purposes been avoided.

                    I don't know the circumstances surrounding the event that occurred in Texas, but my guess is there's more to the story than you and I know. It's very possible, especially if it's a small town, that this stems from personality. It's also possible that the man who started the fire had been warned. I don't know, and won't try to justify it. I will say I do believe there are times when a property owner should be held accountable for their stupidity.

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                    • #11
                      According to the article, the FF suit is based around the homeowners negligenc. "NEGLIGENCE" is defined as "failure to exercise a degree of care that a person of ordinary prudence (a reasonable person) would exercise under the same circumstances." Couldn't you apply negligence to about 90% of fires that occur? Aside from acts of God (lightning, volcanoes, etc), aren't most fires attributed to negligence. Would a "reasonable person" use gasoline to light his fireplace, or light up a cigarette while their oxygen mask is on? Most fires (and resulting FF injuries or deaths) can be blamed on someone's negligence. How is this incident different? Again, we are basing our opinions on a small article, so if someone has more insight the information would be appreciated. This suit should open some eyes.

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                      • #12
                        ok...obviously everyone is against the firefighter thats suing. now could someone please tell me what the hell he is suing for. you guys just started complaining and didn't state what he is acually suing for.
                        sorry didn't mean to vent there.
                        thanks.

                        Robert A. Klinger, Jr.
                        Junior FireFighter

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Comwhite -- just wanted to let you know I wasn't directing my comments at you. Your POV just started my gears in another direction so I felt the need to spit it all out there. I will agree with you on the scenario you describe as being negligent. I guess we can apply it to the Forest Service guy in New Mexico last summer as well since he did what he was advised not to do. The fact that there are people who do not see the impact of their decisions is one of the biggest reasons I am opposed to open burns to clear brush and trash.

                          Klinger -- to bring you up to speed, you can take a look at the article that started this. It was on the front page of Firehouse.com this morning. I attached the link below.
                          http://www.firehouse.com/news/2001/2/15_tx.html

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                          • #14
                            comwhite - You are correct about open burning being negligent, it could also be criminal!

                            If the property owner's action is in violation of the fire code or a local ordinance, penalize him and go after the costs of suppression.

                            Another question, in NJ we are covered under workers comp, an injured vol in our company was paid as a career firefighter (quite a raise for him) due to an on duty shoulder injury. Do other states treat their vols this way?

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                            • #15
                              I am a volunteer firefighter in a town which still gives no compensation for us, we to this job out of a desire to help ALL the people of our community. We accept the risks and do our job. I think this lawsuit is a disgrace to the fire service

                              Comment

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