The following information was provided by the
Sicomac Engine Company No. 3 won the Township’s 53rd Annual Fire Department Inspection Contest that was held on Friday, March 2, and concluded in an awards dinner ceremony the next night.
The Township Committee congratulated firefighters of Company No. 3 and Deputy Chief Len DeBlock on winning the contest. The Township is very fortunate to have so dedicated a group from all three fire companies who so unselfishly volunteer their time and energy to serve the entire community.
The Township’s volunteer firefighters spent many weeks dismantling, cleaning and repairing, if necessary, the fire pumpers and trucks of the three fire companies that protect the Township, as well as all the equipment located on those vehicles. They also spent countless hours honing up on their firefighting knowledge in preparation for the annual inspection.
A panel of seven independent fire fighting experts conducted the inspection of the fire apparatus and the knowledge of the firefighters, traveling first to Protection Company No. 1 which is located behind Town Hall, to Community Engine Company No. 2 located on Wyckoff Avenue and finally to Sicomac Engine Company No. 3 located on Sicomac Avenue. Fire Chief Mike Rose emphasized that the annual contest provides an opportunity for the fire department to ensure that the Township’s fire fighting equipment is in the best possible condition by conducting a thorough review of the fire trucks, equipment and the knowledge of the officers, drivers and firefighters of all three fire companies in the Township.
The inspection was conducted by a team of seven inspectors. They were: Lead Inspector, John Riker, Retired Deputy Chief Newark Fire Department; Inspectors: Captain Len Rybicki, Ladder Company No. 8, Jersey City Fire Department; Brian J. McDermott, Battalion Chief Paterson Fire Department; John Tobin, Lieutenant FDNY Rescue No. 1; Jim Doughtery, Ex-Chief Ramsey Fire Department and John Donahue, FDNY Engine No. 10; and Wyckoff resident Erik Rubenaucker.
“The inspection is an intense competition between Wyckoff’s three fire companies”, Fire Chief Mike Rose said as the firefighters were being tested on their knowledge.
He explained that the firefighters prepare by servicing, cleaning and revamping their apparatus and equipment two nights a week for six to seven weeks prior to the inspection, and every night for the final two weeks before the inspection. They also study procedures and policies in order to pass the oral examinations and respond to the various potential fire fighting scenarios presented by the inspectors.
The Township’s fire department is the only fire department in the State of New Jersey that conducts inspections of the condition of its fire apparatus, and, submits the fire fighting knowledge of its firefighters and officers to the evaluation of outside experts.
Chief Rose informed the firefighters and their families who attended the awards ceremony that the Wyckoff Volunteer Fire Department responded to 689 calls requiring 39,000 man hours of time in 2011 and spent an additional 11,500 hours dedicated to training in order to prepare for those emergency responses.
This year several of our firefighters participated in an in-house 20 week Rescue Technicians Training Course. This extensive course helps prepare our members to be properly qualified chauffeurs during an emergency. This year, the following members will be awarded with their drivers wings:
- Will Neuenhaus Lt. James Abma
- Colin Bell Lt. Aaron Gettleman
- Matt Tani Capt. Andrew Forsyth
The following firefighters completed milestone years of firefighter service and were presented with “service stripes”:
5 years of service:
- Lt. Jim Abma
- Lt. Aaron Gettleman
- Ken Dyer
- Russ Hoeffs
- Peter Saliu
10 years of service:
- Deputy Chief Len DeBlock
- Captain Brian Zivkovich
- Jack Tanucilli
15 years of service:
- Ron Gilmore
- 20 years of service:
- Assist. Chief Lou Graglia
- Dave Murphy
- Bob Shannon
25 years of service:
- Lt. Tom Durkin
- Doug Christie
- Tim Murray
- Bruce Peters
35 years of service:
- Craig McCall
40 years of service:
- Tony Avia
50 years of service:
- Nick Ciampo
55 years of service:
- Lou Rizzo
- Bob Todd
- George Conklin
60 years of service:
- Joe Landi
Several other awards were presented include, Most Active Junior Firefighter: William Pettit from Company No. 1; Highest Fire Call Percentage: Company No. 1: Thomas Martin, Company No. 2: Mark Tanucilli, Company No. 3: Joseph Labarck; Highest Drill Percentage: Company No. 1: Brian Dehaas, Company No. 2: Mike Schell, Company No. 3: Matt Tani.
Fire Chief Rose awarded the Dana Hannon Distinguished Service Award, the Wyckoff Fire Department’s highest honor to an individual who personifies everything that Dana stood for; honor, courage, leadership and heroism to Ex-Chief and past Mayor, Charles Cole.
This is the ninth year this award was presented in honor of Dana Rey Hannon, a Wyckoff volunteer firefighter and a New York City firefighter. Dana Hannon was killed during the immediate rescue response to the World Trade Center terrorist attack on September 11, 2001.