End of the Year Review 2013

     Once again we have come to the end of another year, 2013, yes I know it's early, but lately with my work schedule and assignments, I really have been away from the computer.  For a quick recap, hopefully my mind stays with me through this, I have started to do photography work for Asst. Chief Johnson with the CCFD and his Volunteer Firefighter's Program, from there had a meeting with Chief Washington (pictured below with me) and Asst. Chief Baker that does the community outreach stuff and as some of the Firefighters have told me, Chief Baker's Public Information Office; during the transition of getting settled into the photography for CCFD, I got noticed of my appointment.  I went before the oral board to become a Volunteer Firefighter and made it known that my interest was to be assigned to Station 78 (pictured below), and when I least expected while ironing out things for the photography within CCFD, I get a call advising me that I have been selected and assigned to Station 80; I have been informed that the photography portion is still a go!  
      During one of the open houses that I attended and took photographs at, Station 78, I met one of Australia's finest paramedics from Victoria, Paramedic J. Green, with Victoria's Ambulance Services.  It was bummer that we could have not hung out a little more, but what a great fellow.
      During one of the E.L.F.F. training at CCFD Training Center, I got to see the new fleet being prepared and pictured below is Truck 16, and to my surprise one of the captains for that truck has the same last name as to the Battalion Chief that help me get started with the understanding of arson photography, B.C. McBride of Redondo Beach FD, now the photo hangs somewhere inside the day room at Station 16.
      One of the greatest things to happen to me, besides what I have mentioned above, is that I finally got to see my daughter and getting to know her.  She had the privilege to meet her grandfather, which is hard to catch him since he travels a lot (where I get my photography hobby from among other things), and to my surprise even my daughter likes photography and she quite good at it for a 17 year old.  During my runs down south of the border, anything south of Nevada & especially going into California from any angle, I managed to visit the Space Shuttle Endeavour that a friend of mine got lucky to see it on her street while they were moving it to it's present location and to visit my old stumping grounds of Redondo Beach and enjoyed a beautiful sunset that I have not seen in over 20 years (no I'm not moving back).   During all the commotion of life's fast lane, dealing with the courts, getting set up to become the official photographer for CCFD, trying to get photo shoots, etc., once in a while something off the wall will take place and make you smile, laugh, cry, whatever, in my case a candid photo shot of what's normal in some parts of Las Vegas, to be seen as a normal thing among Cosplayers as I have been introduced to this strange and fun World of Cosplay, I think I will enjoy this.

      To all that read this, skim through here, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!  See you next year if the good Lord is willing!

The Fire Chief Washington

Goodsprings VFD, NV CCFD Sta78

Victoria, AU finest Paramedic J. Green
CCFD new Truck16

Space Shuttle Endeavour 
Cosplayer but normal for Vegas!

Redondo Beach, CA sunset


Incident Command Post Carpenter 1

Carpenter 1 Fire Information Board

Today I visit the ICP Carpenter 1, learned some things from the PIO, to put into use in the future and walked out with an invitation and a schedule photo shoot.  As I spoke to the PIO and explained what had happen to me a few days back, immediately the PIO understood and knew that I had received my “experience in California”, for they made reference to that State and I was instructed that Nevada is very “competitive” among their “media photographers trying get that one shot”, in fact the PIO advised me that at this incident they had a media personnel attempt to gain access by pretending to be a resident, but they were stopped on their tracks by “Metro”.   During our improv meeting the PIO recognized IFPA, understood what I do, and commanded me for doing my research on keeping up to date with their policies, e.g. NWCG memo pertaining to media access and guidelines.  The PIO managed to set up a photo shoot for me and invited me to tour the area on a different day, which I already have the time for it.  I’m looking forward to the photo shoot, however, large or small it may be, but still it’s a shoot.

USFS Fire UT-13, unk, CA-BDF E314, BLM Fire 3630 & 3634, USFS Fire Unk Engine


Fire Season

Looking East from southbound US-95 between Kyle Canyon and Lee Canyon (2013 July 5)

This year the fire season started early, unfortunately with tragedies.  In the State of Nevada alone there are approximately six fires going, two of them being major fires, Bison with approximately 25, 733 acres burned (Carson City District) and Carpenter 1 with approximately 19,757 acres burned (Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest), both with the possibility and most likely to increase in acreage.  Both of the major fires have cost over $4 million and in my area the good news is there has not been no structure or injuries reported.

However, the communities that have been affected by the fire in my area (Carpenter 1) seems to be criticizing how the fire is being handle and they don’t think enough was done at the beginning of the fire that was started by lighting, I just love how “others” seems to know how to do the job better without the education and/or experience needed in any given line of work.  I think those folks should step up and volunteer their experience and see how much they really know. 

Nevada Division of Forestry heading towards Carpenter One Fire, about 5-6 units passing me while I'm on the shoulder.


NSFA 78th Annual Training and Conference 2013V

I attended the Nevada State Firefighters' Association 78th Annual Training and Conference that was held in Mesquite, Nevada.  Unlike the California State Firemen's Association (CSFA) that I attended in the mid 80's, this conference included hands on training for firefighters, most of the firefighters that attended the conference were volunteers.  The Volunteer Firefighters in their district receives training from their appropriate department and/or from the paid fire department that sponsors them so they can keep current with the issues and hone their skills, the State association training and conference that I attended, I notice that it not only brings the brotherhood together (paid firefighters were on hand too), have vendors present to show the latest equipment for the fire service, but offered classes for any individual to learn more in a specific field and some of the classes an individual can receive a certificate.  All attendees that participated representing a specific fire department (paid or volunteer) receives credit towards their training as I was explained by one of the State Marshall officials.  They collect the name badges that were issued at to the individual at the classes to give them credit and as a check-in status for any of the firefighters that were sponsored by their department to be at the conference to ensure they were at the conference and not spending the entire time at the pool, as it was told to me.

This year host were the Clark County Fire Department's Volunteer stations of Logandale, Bunkerville, Moapa, Overton, and the City of Mesquite Fire Department...they did a great job. 

VFF learning to stabilize a vehicle

LPG Live Burn exercise

LPG Live Burn exercise  

LPG Live Burn exercise

Animegacon 2013

 I was invited to go to my first Animegacon Convention, at first I was like "A what Anee-mega-uh?"  I had no idea what I got myself into nor if I knew I was going to have fun or not, but as always I carry my cameras with me where ever I go to entertain myself.  However, I must admit that I did have fun at the convention and looking forward to other conventions that are similar.  Special thanks to Tiffany Tyler for inviting me to Animegacon.

Johnny Yong Bosch signing a Power Ranger card

Maid Cafe host


Budget Cut At Society's Expense?

It is sad to hear and see first hand budget problems.  Line of work I do we deal a lot with the PD and to hear them even say they are delayed to FD over public radio is sad.  Rolling up unto this non-injury accident after being out with friends and seeing the rescue leaving the scene with no PD on scene, I decided to wait around until the PD arrives, just to catch another driver slam into these vehicle in the middle of the block.

Dash Cam


Brush Fires Southern California...

These fires in Southern California are reminding me of 1983, when I first started taking Fire Photography and I was still part of the LACoFD Explorer program.  Now the only difference is I read about it instead of being part of it since I live in another State.   http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/wildfires/


Alamo, Nevada....

A smaller town than Caliente in the Eastern portion of Southern Nevada along US-93, (the last time I have driven through the town was back in 1994).  It has grown to a considerable size.  The US Post Office has moved from its location and the gas station where it was house had closed.  However, on the South side of the town, you will find a large Sinclair gas station capable of hosting some eighteen-wheelers and it doubles up as the general store for the community; on the North side of the town there is a Shell station (you will not see the stations from either of the stations).

Rachel, Nevada...

So what is the hype of this town?  Besides low flying aircraft signs along the highway; however, you start seeing low flying aircrafts signs along US-93 to NV-375 and various parts of Nevada in the rural areas; Rachel only has a diner that has some items all dealing with aliens, in fact the name of the diner is Little Alien Diner. Prices of the food is not bad, prices on the collector items are not bad, similar to a gift shop you will find in Las Vegas, Nevada.  No gas station, in fact, there is nothing in this town!  With all the hype that people have put into this town in Las Vegas, I was disappointed.  I found Alamo, Nevada to be more interesting than Rachel and Caliente, Nevada a lot more than Alamo.  Would I return to Rachel?  Only to see if I can catch more of the low flying aircrafts that are flown by the USAF along the highway.  You can hear sonic booms when they break the sound barrier, but definitely not in the near future would I go there, nor would I even think of taking someone to show them the town, unless they persist on seeing the "Extraterrestrial Highway".


Caliente, Nevada...

Caleinte, Nevada depot
A small little town in the Eastern portion of Southern Nevada along US-93, (the last time I have driven through the town was back in 1994).  This trip was very enlightening, I learned from their representative at the train museum (not to be mistaken with the Nevada's official railroad society museums) that the town has done several changes, "...for good or bad...;" which he seemed to end most of his conversations with when speaking of the town.  The fire department is all volunteers and they only had one station, which was located on the wrong side of the train tracks; it prevented them from crossing the tracks if there was a train passing through or stopped on the tracks, so they built a second (larger) station on the main highway to serve the majority of the community.  The old section, as I would call it, is on the side of the train depot, which Amtrak no longer stops at.  The depot has become a city building hosting the City's Office and Library besides some other offices, the train museum is a converted boxcar with very few, but valuable information of the town and a caboose attached to it (currently closed until renovation).  You can find a True Value store and a Sinclair gas station.

Caliente VFD Station 1 (same side as depot)


Quiet Neighborhood...

 Yesterday, while I was enroute to work, I just happen to be in the right spot at the right time to photographs some activities before they extended the line where you couldn't see anything due to safety purposes.  Normally this is a quiet neighborhood to my understanding the subject just decided to have company; no hostage but they barricaded themself threatening to hurt themself.  
Preparing to deploy.

Final prep.

Move out.


Webpage Update

You can go to my Webpage and see the photos that are available.  Spread the word and pass it around.


Something to do when visiting Las Vegas, Nevada

One does not have to stay inside a casino and just play the machines or the tables; there are shows at the casinos, plenty of things to see off the strip, or even go for a nature hike at Red Rock instead of a walk on the strip.  After all, how much can one endure being locked up in four walls?  Don't you do that enough at home?  Take a tour towards Valley of Fire, Hoover Dam, Red Rock, or even Laughlin (granted you'll probably be in another casino), or if you can rent a car and go exploring some of the places around Southern Nevada like the Nevada State Railroad Museum, Boulder City which offers rides (picture below); or visit the Clark County Heritage Museum in Henderson, Nevada, which is on the way.  Take a trip to Beatty, Nevada and visit Rhyolite Ghost town; Mesquite, Nevada; Logandale, Nevada; or even Death Valley. 


Shed fire....

Units at a shed fire CCFD Station 27 & Btn 3
Remains of the shed

Firefighter inspecting area

20 Years Ago

To believe that over 20 years ago from this spot, the majority of the tall buildings were not there and the very spot that I'm on did not exist, at least as a paved road that is.  Las Vegas Strip with a small southern end of the downtown (on the far right you'll see a small tower, the "Stratosphere") with the Sheep Mountain range in the background and new housing development in the foreground (seen in the closeup).


Restricted; yet determine to get the photo story.


It's A Shame...

It is a shame that businesses that have dealt with small businesses and those that may have a force of less than five individuals to get a task done, are no longer being taken into consideration.

In the line of work that I do for myself as a volunteer to provide a service for a larger Public Service entity, I have come across the misfortune of finding out that the company I had dealt with, the new owners have discourage to deal with the "small" fish".  Luckily I still have one that does not care what you want or how many you want as long as you are willing to pay the price.  Just wish there were more companies that had that same attitude, especially towards the "small fishes".


Domestic Violence

Apartment fire once again at a well known complex seems to have a black cloud over it.  In 2007, there was a fire that took out a building, about four months ago it had another fire that took out another building, and this very recently one (2013 Feb 10), displaced several residents.  The reports have it that it was caused by an individual with a very violent history of domestic violence.  In my opinion this is beyond a case of domestic violence, at least the local police department are planning on charging this individual with at least 15 counts of attempt murder.

On another note...early this same day by three hours, there was a fire less than a mile that had several units fighting a vacant house fire.  It seems like this area is plague, but it is not Detroit (yet).

2013 Feb 12 Fatal Accident

No full detail about this fatal accident car vs. bicycle; however, regardless of who was at fault, this tragedy should have not happened if one and/or both were paying attention to what they were doing.  Drive defensively, not offensively.


2013 January 9 MVA

 On 2013 January 9th Motor Vehicle Accident (MVA) without injuries occurred at one of our busiest intersections, rescue and ambulance arrived on scene and cleared immediately, Engine 17 from Clark County Fire Dept. (CCFD) was clearing the scene as AI was starting their investigation in Southeast Area Command.


Major Gas Leak

2013 January 28, around 2230 hours there was a major gas leak at the border of Enterprise Area Command and Northwest Area Command that closed the street for approximately five hours.