Helmets and My Stupid Idiotic Chief

Today’s burning questions (yes its plural): Part I: My chief is a complete and total stupid idiot. He refuses to issue me and the other guys that came on with me in my training academy new helmets despite the fact that (1) we have been on the job for 11 years; (2) we have never been issued replacement helmets; (3) NFPA standards require that the helmets be replaced after 10 years; and best of all (4) we know that he knows he is supposed to replace the helmets at the 10 year mark because the moron replaced our turnout gear (coats and pants) just before our 10th anniversary. What can we do?

Part II: My chief is a complete and total stupid idiot. He is insisting that we replace perfectly good fire helmets – helmets that there is absolutely nothing wrong with – just because they are 10 years old. Like everyone else we are struggling for funding and this moron wants to squander money replacing helmets. What can we do?

Answer: I’m staying out of this one. By the way, did you hear what’s going on in FDNY?

About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 45 years of fire service experience and 35 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014, 4th ed. 2022) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.
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