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NEWS
January 31, 2013 | By Karie Simmons, Inquirer Staff Writer
Family, friends, and colleagues packed into Irvine Auditorium at the University of Pennsylvania Wednesday to watch graduating classes of the Philadelphia Fire Academy take their oath of office. It was the first new class of fire recruits in five years in Philadelphia. Mayor Nutter congratulated the 181 fire and paramedic cadets as the first classes to pass through a CrossFit strength and conditioning program as well. "So this will also be the fittest class so far in the Philadelphia Fire Department," Nutter said.
NEWS
January 28, 2013 | ASSOCIATED PRESS
PORTO ALEGRE, BRAZIL - Flames raced through a crowded nightclub in southern Brazil early Sunday, killing more than 230 people as panicked partygoers gasped for breath in the smoke-filled air, stampeding toward a single exit partially blocked by those already dead. It appeared to be the world's deadliest nightclub fire in more than a decade. Witnesses said that a flare or firework lit by band members started the blaze in Santa Maria, a university city of about 225,000 people, though officials said that the cause was still under investigation.
NEWS
January 28, 2013 | By Juliana Barbassa and Marco Sibaja, Associated Press
PORTO ALEGRE, Brazil - Flames raced through a crowded nightclub in southern Brazil early Sunday, killing more than 230 people as panicked partygoers gasped for breath in the smoke-filled air, stampeding toward a single exit partially blocked by those already dead. It appeared to be the world's deadliest nightclub fire in more than a decade. Witnesses said a flare or firework lit by band members started the blaze in Santa Maria, a university city of about 225,000 people, though officials said the cause was still under investigation.
NEWS
January 11, 2013
EVEN GOOD news can't be simple in this city. For example, last week's announcement that civilian fire deaths in the city have reached the lowest number in recorded history - 25 in 2012 - is nothing but loose topsoil covering a rat's nest of complicated issues besetting the Fire Department. Many of these issues are illustrative of the evolution of a department in which changing trends - like more fire-resistant buildings and better prevention education - has led to far fewer structural fires, but medical emergencies, which the department also handles, have risen, and the city, Fire Department management and the workforce have not stayed on pace with these trends.
NEWS
January 11, 2013
I HAVE LIVED and worked in Philadelphia all my life. I have paid taxes on my home for over 55 years. The only things I have asked for in all that time have been trash removal, safe streets and police and fire protection. Now Fire Commissioner Lloyd Ayers tells us that updating our EMS system would be "a long, arduous process, a costly process. " Stop telling us why things can't be done - just get them done! And while we're talking about the Fire Department, Mayor Nutter, give the firemen their raises.
NEWS
January 4, 2013 | BY JAN RANSOM, Daily News Staff Writer ransomj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5218
ALTHOUGH HOMICIDES in Philadelphia spiked in 2012, fire deaths fell to their lowest level in at least 70 years, the Fire Department announced Wednesday, with a year-end total of 25. Mayor Nutter applauded the department's community-risk-reduction and fire-safety-outreach efforts and the leadership of Fire Commissioner Lloyd Ayers. Despite cutbacks, the department "has demonstrated the ability to do more with less," Nutter said. Ayers said that there's still work to be done and that the goal is zero fatalities.
NEWS
December 12, 2012 | By Robert Moran, Inquirer Staff Writer
Their South Philadelphia warehouse was still smoldering from a four-alarm fire earlier in the day, but members of the Fralinger String Band declared Monday night that they would not miss the Mummers Parade. "Fralinger will never back down from a challenge," said Thomas D'Amore, 24, the captain. The band had been renting first-floor space at Second and Wharton Streets to make props and costumes, D'Amore said. "Unfortunately, this is the first year we've rented this spot," said D'Amore, drinking a Pepsi outside the Shamrock Pub down Two Street.
NEWS
December 4, 2012 | BY STEPHANIE FARR, Daily News Staff Writer farrs@phillynews.com, 215-854-4225
ZED'S DEAD is an electronic band that took its name from the Quentin Tarantino thriller "Pulp Fiction. " The film includes a grisly overdose scene - and at the band's performance Saturday night at the Electric Factory, fact mirrored fiction when at least four people overdosed, causing the gig to be canceled, according to the fire department and social media. Police responded to the Electric Factory, at 7th Street near Callowhill, about 8 p.m. and found nine concertgoers passed out from possible overdoses, the Associated Press reported.
NEWS
November 29, 2012 | BY JAN RANSOM, Daily News Staff Writer ransomj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5218
CITY COUNCIL grilled the Nutter administration at a hearing Tuesday about its plans to rotate 293 senior firefighters to stations throughout the city starting in January. Fire Commissioner Lloyd Ayers spent two hours defending the plan at a Committee on Labor and Civil Service hearing before a group of skeptical Council members and dozens of heckling firefighters. "None of this makes any sense," said Councilman Jim Kenney, committee chairman, calling the administration's actions punitive.
NEWS
November 24, 2012
Blast levels Mass. building SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - A natural gas explosion leveled a multistory building housing a strip club in one of New England's biggest cities on Friday evening, injuring at least eight people. There was no word on whether there had been any fatalities, Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno's spokesman Thomas Walsh said. Eight people were being evaluated at Baystate Medical Center, but none had critical injuries, a hospital spokeswoman said. It was unclear if people had been taken to other hospitals.
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