02/06/14 3:50pm

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A reader sends this shot just after 3:30pm – view from T and Rhode Island Ave, NW.

Update. Though the photo above was taken in Bloomingdale it is looking east towards Eckington. Another reader sends a close up photo from Lincoln Road, NE and Seaton:

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01/31/14 8:35am

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From @DCPoliceDept:

“Traffic Alert: Fire 3100 block of Mt. Pleasant St., NW: Mt. Pleasant St., NW is closed is between Irving St & Lamont St NW”

@DCFireEMS tweeted:

“UPDATE – Fire 3100blk of Mt Pleasant St NW. 3 ppl transported w/serious to minor inj. all non life threatening. 30 ppl displaced.”

@WeinDC tweets around 8:30am that Mt. Pleasant Street is still closed to traffic at Lamont.

Update: A readers sends these very sad photos.

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A fire devastated 3145 Mt. Pleasant St, NW in 2008. Work is slowly progressing on rebuilding the new Monseñor Romero apartments.

01/17/14 3:15pm

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Photo of 3522 Connecticut Avenue, NW reopening via @mayorvincegray

From a press release:

“Mayor Vincent C. Gray today joined public-safety officials to celebrate the opening of the newly renovated Engine Company 28 firehouse in Cleveland Park. The historic building – which first opened on December 1, 1916 – has undergone a $4.7 million renovation to provide safety, architectural and energy-efficiency improvements.

Mayor Gray was joined by Deputy Mayor for Public Safety and Justice Paul Quander, Jr., Fire and Emergency Medical Services (FEMS) Chief Kenneth B. Ellerbe, and Department of General Services (DGS) Director of Capital Construction Services June Locker for the official ribbon-cutting ceremony.

“The improvements made to Engine Company 28 have not only restored this historic fire station, but they have also equipped the facility with needed upgrades to provide a safer environment for our outstanding FEMS staff,” Mayor Gray said. “This will improve the safety of residents, businesses and visitors in Ward 3.”

FEMS has implemented a capital program for the modernization of several of its fire stations. The program includes replacement of deteriorated HVAC equipment, updates to structural and electrical components and preservation and improvement of architectural features.

“Fire stations have always been an integral part of the communities they serve,” said FEMS Chief Kenneth B. Ellerbe. “I’m certain the residents in Cleveland Park are just as excited about the re-opening of this beautifully renovated station as our staff members are about returning to this building and this community. We appreciate the Cleveland Park community’s patience during this renovation time.”

The renovation project for Engine Company 28 included widening the fire station’s bay doors to provide easier entry for emergency vehicles while also maintaining the building’s historic features.

“This project provided DGS with a great opportunity both to restore and modernize this 100-year-old building,” said DGS Director Brian J. Hanlon. “The building upgrades have improved the firefighters’ and paramedics’ living space, and today the fire station is safer for first responders to perform the outstanding work that they do for the city.”

01/06/14 1:57pm

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Dear PoPville,

There are at least 4 full-sized fire trucks, 2 EMTs and 2 emergency SUVs all on Spring Rd NW between 13th and 14th Streets NW. I live on Holmead and heard the first 3 trucks pull through and have been poking my head out the door to see if I can tell what’s going on. Within the last 10 minutes or so the 2 SUVs came and are blocking the traffic moving between 13th and 14th. I can only see people coming in and out of a house on Spring (directly across from Holmead), but it doesn’t seem to be a hectic situation. I’m not sure what’s going on. The only thing I can think of is if someone called in a Carbon Monoxide issue or other type of gas leak, but I would think they’d bring a PepCo person out…Any ideas?”

12/04/13 9:16pm

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Thanks to a reader for sending:

“Between 7 and 7:30 p.m. tonight, nearly a dozen DCFD and MPD vehicles were at intersection of Georgia Avenue and Webster Street, closing off Georgia between Varnum and Allison Streets, as well as Webster between Iowa and Kansas Avenues. We heard what sounded like a police megaphone outside for a few minutes, so we poked our heads out and saw this.

According to one first responder that I spoke to, it was “just a small kitchen fire,” at 908 Webster Street, but it’s easy to see from some of these photos that there must have been enough smoke to soot up the side of the attached home. One bystander noted that none of the home’s windows had been busted and there was no smoke left in the air, so they must have responded quick.”

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11/29/13 11:30am

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Photo by PoPville flickr user ep_jhu

Council Member Tommy Wells called it “an indictment of the management and maintenance of our Fire and Emergency Medical Services fleet – of our fire trucks and ambulances.” Below is the official DC Fire EMS press release and comment from Paul Quander, the District’s Deputy Mayor for Public Safety and Justice:

“The District of Columbia Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department (DCFEMS) released a study by BDA Global that examined the department’s current fleet capacity and management practices.

“This study was a significant step in correcting some of the problems that have plagued our fleet division for years,” said DCFEMS Chief Kenneth B. Ellerbe. “The recommendations in this report will help us become more efficient and responsive in our operations.”

The report includes a comprehensive assessment of several major issues which include:

· Fleet inventory
· Maintenance and repair operations
· DCFEMS policies and procedures related to fleet operations
· Reserve apparatus requirements
· Training and certification of fleet maintenance personnel and facilities

More than 100 recommendations are offered in the report with some of them having been implemented by the Department prior to its release. One key recommendation implemented was the hiring of “a professional, civilian fleet director” to lead the apparatus division.

BDA Global, a District-based consulting firm that specializes in business process improvement, emergency management and continuity planning, was selected by the Department in July 2013 to conduct the audit.

Please click here to review the report.

From DM Quander:

“There are many observations and recommendations in the report. It should be noted that in the report, it states some of the addressed issues date back 15 to 20 years. Some recommendations are short-term in nature and others are intermediate. While still others are long range. Chief Elerbe has already taken effective measures that have dealt with some of the most immediate issues. The goal is to fully assess the report, then develop a comprehensive, transparent and measurable implementation strategy.”

11/27/13 11:00am

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Photo by PoPville flickr user ep_jhu

From Council Member Tommy Wells:

“Councilmember Tommy Wells, Chair of the Judiciary and Public Safety Committee, responded to the Fleet Audit Report released by the District’s Fire and Emergency Medical Services (FEMS). Wells will hold an oversight hearing on DC’s FEMS next week, on Wednesday, December 4th.

Click here FEMS Apparatus Division – Audit and Assessment Report  for a copy of the FEMS Fleet Audit and Assessment Report. Councilmember Wells’ response follows:

“This audit report is an indictment of the management and maintenance of our Fire and Emergency Medical Services fleet – of our fire trucks and ambulances. The audit shows that there is not an accountable system to ensure that our fleet is repaired, accounted for and replaced.

“The Administration has recently procured new ambulances, but this report does not give me confidence that they have a system to manage and maintain the new or old vehicles, or to know when they will need to buy more.

“The audit report shows that it is taking DC 20 times longer to repair vehicles in our fleet than it does for similar jurisdictions and cities across the country. There are only 369 vehicles in the Fire and Emergency Medical Services fleet, while MPD has over 1600 vehicles that they have been able to track and maintain in a timely and cost efficient manner. I would like to see FEMS be able to do the same.

“This is about public safety and accountability. The vehicles and equipment are very expensive and are paid for by the tax dollars of District residents. Our ambulances and fire trucks are critically important to public safety and need to be in the best repair possible so they can quickly get to residents in all parts of the city.

“The audit provides an oversight baseline to ensure that the Administration is replacing, repairing and maintaining the equipment in a responsible way for the citizens of DC. The city needs a radical restructuring in the way they manage the fleet, and I look forward to hearing the Administration’s plans and ideas at my oversight hearing next week.”

11/27/13 8:54am

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Photo from @ebrotherton

Around 8am ‏@SlawSpeaks tweeted us:

“holy crap. Apartment fire on Newton between 16th and 14th.”

@tommer tweeted:

“Newton St. fire sounded like electrical – overhearing investigator”

@ebrotherton tweeted:

“Photo of the damage from this morning’s fire on Newton Street. Hoping everyone got out safe.”

@RSwirling tweeted:

“I’m 3 buildings over – we could see smoke from top of building, can smell it in my apartment”

@tikidaisy tweeted:

“Saw atleast one person leaving in an ambulance as trucks cleared out from 16th and Newton at 9am.”