Friday, May 26, 2017

Fire Strikes Jasmine's Restaurant


At 3:20 PM the Auburn Fire Rescue Department responded to 711 Southbridge Street for an activated fire alarm.  Deputy Chief Glenn Johnson arrived on scene reporting smoke coming from the roof over Jasmine's restaurant.  The smoke was caused by a fire in the kitchen.    

Deputy Chief Glenn Johnson said "the restaurant was in full operation when the fire department arrived and partially evacuated with fire alarms sounding.  Fire department crews quickly evacuated the building and extinguished the fire."    

There were no injuries to civilians or firefighters.  The Board of Health was called to the scene.  At this time the fire is under investigation but does not appear to be suspicious.      

Pictures for media use.

Deputy Fire Chief Glenn Johnson

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Early Morning Mother’s Day Activity kept the AFRD Running

AFRD Group 3 was busy in the overnight hours on May 14, 2017. The all-nighter began at 11:27 p.m. when crews were requested to the Mass Pike westbound at the 91.2 mile marker just behind the Auburn Mall for a reported motor vehicle rollover. It was reported that two patients were unconscious. Engine 3 and Ambulance 1 responded and immediately requested the Rescue as crews were receiving updates. A total of three patients were extricated from the vehicle, one with life threatening injuries and 2 with serious injuries. All patients were transported to UMASS Memorial University Campus. One Ambulance was received mutual aid from Millbury.

Just as Engine 3 was backing into the station at 12:42 a.m. still soaked from the MVA rollover they were requested mutual aid to the scene in the Town of Charlton to 98 Baker Pond Rd. for a 2 alarm structure fire. Companies worked the scene for several hours in the pouring rain. AFRD Captain Justin Brigham said the rainy conditions made fighting the fire challenging. “It poured the entire time we were operating” Brigham said.
                                          98 Baker Pond Rd. Charlton, MA             5-14-17

Chief Stephen M. Coleman Jr., MPA, CFO

Thursday, May 11, 2017

AFRD Promotes Deputy Chief and Captain

On Monday May 8, 2017 the Auburn Fire Rescue Department held a ceremony in Town Hall to promote two veteran fire officers. Asst. Chief Glenn Johnson and Lt. Justin Brigham were promoted to Deputy Chief and Captain. Deputy Chief Johnson has been with the department for 22 years and has served as a Lieutenant, Captain and Asst. Chief before starting his new role on Monday. Deputy Johnson fills a vacancy that has existed within the department since May of 2011 when Chief Stephen M. Coleman Jr. was promoted to Chief of Department.

The Deputy Chief of Operations oversees the day to day activities and operation of the emergency response of the department. In addition, Deputy Johnson will serve as the departments EMS Coordinator overseeing the administrative oversight of the Ambulance operation including billing.  Chief Coleman is thrilled to have the Deputy Chief position back in the ranks of the department. "The vacancy of the Deputy Chief position left a huge void in our operation. The restoration of this position will ensure additional administrative support to the Chief and will strengthen the day to day consistency of the department by being the constant day to day with four working groups who rotate on 24 hour shifts. Without administrative leadership in place to ensure the day to day consistency of the emergency operations the potential exists for the 4 separate working groups to drift away from procedure, then the next thing you know you have 4 separate fire departments operating under one roof." Coleman said.

The Chief went on to say that we are extremely lucky to have strong and talented Captains who serve as shift commanders to oversee their groups however he is relieved that they will not have the additional burden of managing all of the other day to day activities within the department. "The role of a shift commander is to manage their shift to ensure the safety of their people and the public. They are responsible to make sure that emergency calls are being executed in a manner that is consistent with the high standards of our department. They can't do that if they are also worrying about answering the day to day business phone calls, public that comes to the window and making sure trucks are delivered to the DPW for preventative maintenance. That is not there job, and when they have to focus on those types of administrative functions something suffers." Coleman said.

Chief Coleman credits the hard work of many to see this position restored within the department. The Town Manager, Asst. Town Manager and CFO, The Board of Selectmen and the Finance Committee, all who unanimously supported bringing the Deputy Chief position back and have been trying to accomplish it for the past several years. "I am happy that all of the elected and appointed officials heard our concerns and recognized the need. I am very thankful that we had the full support of all of these folks who made it happen."

Captain Justin Brigham will serve as the new Shift Commander of Group 3 filling the vacancy left by Deputy Johnson. Captain Brigham has been with the department for 10 years and has over 20 years of fire service experience. Captain Brigham serves on the District 7 Technical Rescue Team and will now serve as the Team Leader for the newly created Motorcycle Unit that will provide Advanced Life Support Emergency Medical Services to the Central Mass Law Enforcement Council. Captain Brigham will also continue to coordinate equipment repair issues and preventative maintenance along with Captain David Tefft.

On June 29, 2017 the department will be promoting two additional Lieutenants to fill vacancies created by a retirement and the promotion of Captain Brigham. Chief Coleman said, "I am so blessed to have such a strong, talented group of officers in my command staff. All of these promotions will only work to strengthen that".

Contact Information:
Chief Stephen M. Coleman Jr.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Auburn Fire Rescue starts Motor Unit to support Law Enforcement

Auburn Fire Rescue Chief Stephen M. Coleman Jr. was on hand at the Board of Selectmen’s meeting Monday night to announce an exciting new program initiative within the department that will continue to support the Central Mass Law Enforcement Council, also known as CEMLEC. The department will be outfitting a 2017 Harley Davidson motorcycle with Advanced Life Support equipment to be embedded into the CEMLEC Motor Unit to provide immediate Emergency Medical care to both motor officers and the public. Attending the meeting with Chief Coleman was Lt. Todd Lemon from Auburn Police and Chief Thomas Ford from the Sturbridge Police Department both of whom are leaders within the CEMLEC organization and oversees the Motor Unit.

Chief Coleman said this new motor unit program “is a continuation of our relationship with CEMLEC that as a department we have enjoyed for over 15 years.” The department currently has one Paramedic assigned to the SWAT Team who trains with them and responds to SWAT activations to provide advanced medical care and treatment to injured SWAT officers.

Chief Ford who oversees the Motor Unit for CEMLEC said, “public safety partners train together regularly in order to better enhance our response to critical incidents. Many of the CEMLEC Motor Unit assignments involve the organized movement and control of hundreds of people and motorist at any one time. The addition of an Emergency Medical Services component to our Motor Unit will integrate Advanced Life Support into our operational readiness and allow us to have highly trained medical personnel at the ready, in an instant, should the unfortunate need for their services arise.” Chief Ford pointed to an incident this past summer where a Motor Officer went down during a traffic escort mission. The officer suffered serious injuries and was in a remote community that took just over 20 minutes for an Ambulance to arrive on the scene.

Chief Coleman pointed out that although some may think it is unconventional for EMS providers to deliver care from a motorcycle, there are successful EMS Motor Units around the world and in the United States including CT. Although Auburn is not the first EMS motorcycle unit to operate in Massachusetts, they will be the first to operate a motorcycle at the Advanced Life Support level. “The Island of Nantucket operated 4 EMS motorcycles for many years at the Basic Life Support level” Coleman said. Chief Coleman went on to say, “I am so proud to work for this community because we are looked at as forward thinking and visionaries. We are not afraid to do something new, and we are not afraid to be the first at something. This community and our department have a long standing history and tradition with that philosophy.” Chief Ford also thanked Chief Coleman for his support and said they “welcomed this addition to the CEMLEC as we continue to work together to provide our communities better services each day".

Chief Coleman informed the board that the department received $21,100 in donations and grants to upstart the Motor Unit and expects that number to climb. Coleman expects to operate the program at the cost of the lease for $1,570 annually.

The three department members that have been selected for the Motor Unit are Captain Justin Brigham who will be overseeing the unit internally and Firefighters Fran Hartnett and Scott Henderson. Chief Coleman described them all as “responsible, conscientious riders and employees.” All three members will be attending the 80 hour Police Motorcycle training School in August at Northwestern University, Center for Public Safety in Weymouth MA, where national trainers will put them through an intense two week program, the same program that all CEMLEC Motor Officers have graduated. Chief Coleman expects the program to be fully operational on August 26, 2017.

The Board of Selectmen applauded the efforts of the Fire Rescue Department by continuing to find ways to improve on services and programs that are delivered. They pointed out the unbelievable relationship between the Auburn Police and Fire Departments that are based on admiration and respect for each other’s work. The Selectmen were thankful that the Town is able to continue to assist in the mission of CEMLEC and is able to provide this new program for the protection of the Motor Officers and the public.
Contact Information:
Chief Stephen M. Coleman Jr.