Every year we at Capitol Fire Training like to honor the fallen brothers from the City Of New York Fire Dept., that passed away during the attacks on the World Trade Center in 2001.  Below is a list of all the firefighters that died that day, in alphabetical order. Thank you to all who made the ultimate sacrifice.

Joseph Agnello, Lad.118 Lt. Brian Ahearn, Bat.13 Eric Allen, Sqd.18 (D) Richard Allen, Lad.15 Cpt. James Amato, Sqd.1 Calixto Anaya Jr., Eng.4 Joseph Agnello, Lad.118 Lt. Brian Ahearn, Bat.13 Eric Allen, Sqd.18 (D) Richard Allen, Lad.15 Cpt. James Amato, Sqd.1 Calixto Anaya Jr., Eng.4 Joseph Angelini, Res.1 (D) Joseph Angelini Jr., Lad.4 Faustino Apostol Jr., Bat.2 David Arce, Eng.33 Louis Arena, Lad.5 (D) Carl Asaro, Bat.9 Lt. Gregg Atlas, Eng.10 Gerald Atwood, Lad.21
Gerald Baptiste, Lad.9 A.C. Gerard Barbara, Cmd. Ctr. Matthew Barnes, Lad.25 Arthur Barry, Lad.15 Lt.Steven Bates, Eng.235 Carl Bedigian, Eng.214 Stephen Belson, Bat.7 John Bergin, Res.5 Paul Beyer, Eng.6 Peter Bielfeld, Lad.42 Brian Bilcher, Sqd.1 Carl Bini, Res.5 Christopher Blackwell, Res.3 Michael Bocchino, Bat.48 Frank Bonomo, Eng.230 Gary Box, Sqd.1 Michael Boyle, Eng.33 Kevin Bracken, Eng.40 Michael Brennan, Lad.4 Peter Brennan, Res.4 Cpt. Daniel Brethel, Lad.24 (D) Cpt. Patrick Brown, Lad.3 Andrew Brunn, Lad.5 (D) Cpt. Vincent Brunton, Lad.105 F.M. Ronald Bucca Greg Buck, Eng.201 Cpt. William Burke Jr., Eng.21 A.C. Donald Burns, Cmd. Ctr. John Burnside, Lad.20 Thomas Butler, Sqd.1 Patrick Byrne, Lad.101
George Cain, Lad.7 Salvatore Calabro, Lad.101 Cpt. Frank Callahan, Lad.35 Michael Cammarata, Lad.11 Brian Cannizzaro, Lad.101 Dennis Carey, Hmc.1 Michael Carlo, Eng.230 Michael Carroll, Lad.3 Peter Carroll, Sqd.1 (D) Thomas Casoria, Eng.22 Michael Cawley, Lad.136 Vernon Cherry, Lad.118 Nicholas Chiofalo, Eng.235 John Chipura, Eng.219 Michael Clarke, Lad.2 Steven Coakley, Eng.217 Tarel Coleman, Sqd.252 John Collins, Lad.25 Robert Cordice, Sqd.1 Ruben Correa, Eng.74 James Coyle, Lad.3 Robert Crawford, Safety Lt. John Crisci, H.M. B.C. Dennis Cross, Bat.57 (D) Thomas Cullen III, Sqd. 41 Robert Curatolo, Lad.16 (D)
Lt. Edward D'Atri, Sqd.1 Michael D'Auria, Eng.40 Scott Davidson, Lad.118 Edward Day, Lad.11 B.C. Thomas DeAngelis, Bat. 8 Manuel Delvalle, Eng.5 Martin DeMeo, H.M. 1 David DeRubbio, Eng.226 Lt. Andrew Desperito, Eng.1 (D) B.C. Dennis Devlin, Bat.9 Gerard Dewan, Lad.3 George DiPasquale, Lad.2 Lt. Kevin Donnelly, Lad.3 Lt. Kevin Dowdell, Res.4 B.C. Raymond Downey, Soc. Gerard Duffy, Lad.21
Cpt. Martin Egan, Jr., Div.15 (D) Michael Elferis, Eng.22 Francis Esposito, Eng.235 Lt. Michael Esposito, Sqd.1 Robert Evans, Eng.33
B.C. John Fanning, H.O. Cpt. Thomas Farino, Eng.26 Terrence Farrell, Res.4 Cpt. Joseph Farrelly, Div.1 Dep. Comm. William Feehan, (D) Lee Fehling, Eng.235 Alan Feinberg, Bat.9 Michael Fiore, Res.5 Lt. John Fischer, Lad.20 Andre Fletcher, Res.5 John Florio, Eng.214 Lt. Michael Fodor, Lad.21 Thomas Foley, Res.3 David Fontana, Sqd.1 Robert Foti, Lad.7 Andrew Fredericks, Sqd.18 Lt. Peter Freund, Eng.55
Thomas Gambino Jr., Res.3 Chief of Dept. Peter Ganci, Jr. (D) Lt. Charles Garbarini, Bat.9 Thomas Gardner, Hmc.1 Matthew Garvey, Sqd.1 Bruce Gary, Eng.40 Gary Geidel, Res.1 B.C. Edward Geraghty, Bat.9 Dennis Germain, Lad.2 Lt. Vincent Giammona, Lad.5 James Giberson, Lad.35 Ronnie Gies, Sqd.288 Paul Gill, Eng.54 Lt. John Ginley, Eng.40 Jeffrey Giordano, Lad.3 John Giordano, Hmc.1 Keith Glascoe, Lad.21 James Gray, Lad.20 B.C. Joseph Grzelak, Bat.48 Jose Guadalupe, Eng.54 Lt. Geoffrey Guja, Bat.43 Lt. Joseph Gullickson, Lad.101
David Halderman, Sqd.18 Lt. Vincent Halloran, Lad.8 Robert Hamilton, Sqd.41 Sean Hanley, Lad.20 (D) Thomas Hannafin, Lad.5 Dana Hannon, Eng.26 Daniel Harlin, Lad.2 Lt. Harvey Harrell, Res.5 Lt. Stephen Harrell, Bat.7 Cpt. Thomas Haskell, Jr., Div.15 Timothy Haskell, Sqd.18 (D) Cpt. Terence Hatton, Res.1 Michael Haub, Lad.4 Lt. Michael Healey, Sqd.41 John Hefferman, Lad.11 Ronnie Henderson, Eng.279 Joseph Henry, Lad.21 William Henry, Res.1 (D) Thomas Hetzel, Lad.13 Cpt. Brian Hickey, Res.4 Lt. Timothy Higgins, S.O.C. Jonathan Hohmann, Hmc.1 Thomas Holohan, Eng.6 Joseph Hunter, Sqd.288 Cpt. Walter Hynes, Lad.13 (D)
Jonathan Ielpi, Sqd.288 Cpt. Frederick Ill Jr., Lad.2
William Johnston, Eng.6 Andrew Jordan, Lad.132 Karl Joseph, Eng.207 Lt. Anthony Jovic, Bat.47 Angel Juarbe Jr., Lad.12 Mychal Judge, Chaplain (D)
Vincent Kane, Eng.22 B.C. Charles Kasper, S.O.C. Paul Keating, Lad.5 Richard Kelly Jr., Lad.11 Thomas R. Kelly, Lad.15 Thomas W. Kelly, Lad.105 Thomas Kennedy, Lad.101 Lt. Ronald Kerwin, Sqd.288 Michael Kiefer, Lad.132 Robert King Jr., Eng.33 Scott Kopytko, Lad.15 William Krukowski, Lad.21 Kenneth Kumpel, Lad.25 Thomas Kuveikis, Sqd.252
David LaForge, Lad.20 William Lake, Res.2 Robert Lane, Eng.55 Peter Langone, Sqd.252 Scott Larsen, Lad.15 Lt. Joseph Leavey, Lad.15 Neil Leavy, Eng.217 Daniel Libretti, Res.2 Carlos Lillo, Paramedic Robert Linnane, Lad.20 Michael Lynch, Eng.40 Michael Lynch, Lad.4 Michael Lyons, Sqd.41 Patrick Lyons, Sqd.252
Joseph Maffeo, Lad.101 William Mahoney, Res 4 Joseph Maloney, Lad.3 (D) B.C. Joseph Marchbanks Jr, Bat.12 Lt. Charles Margiotta, Bat.22 Kenneth Marino, Res.1 John Marshall, Eng.23 Lt. Peter Martin, Res.2 Lt. Paul Martini, Eng.23 Joseph Mascali, T.S.U. 2 Keithroy Maynard, Eng.33 Brian McAleese, Eng.226 John McAvoy, Lad.3 Thomas McCann, Bat.8 Lt. William McGinn, Sqd.18 B.C. William McGovern, Bat.2 (D) Dennis McHugh, Lad.13 Robert McMahon, Lad.20 Robert McPadden, Eng.23 Terence McShane, Lad.101 Timothy McSweeney, Lad.3 Martin McWilliams, Eng.22 (D) Raymond Meisenheimer, Res.3 Charles Mendez, Lad.7 Steve Mercado, Eng.40 Douglas Miller, Res.5 Henry Miller Jr, Lad.105 Robert Minara, Lad.25 Thomas Mingione, Lad.132 Lt. Paul Mitchell, Bat.1 Capt. Louis Modafferi, Res.5 Lt. Dennis Mojica, Res.1 (D) Manuel Mojica, Sqd.18 (D) Carl Molinaro, Lad.2 Michael Montesi, Res.1 Capt. Thomas Moody, Div.1 B.C. John Moran, Bat.49 Vincent Morello, Lad.35 Christopher Mozzillo, Eng.55 Richard Muldowney Jr, Lad.07 Michael Mullan, Lad.12 Dennis Mulligan, Lad.2 Lt. Raymond Murphy, Lad.16
Lt. Robert Nagel, Eng.58 John Napolitano, Res.2 Peter Nelson, Res.4 Gerard Nevins, Res.1
Dennis O'Berg, Lad.105 Lt. Daniel O'Callaghan, Lad.4 Douglas Oelschlager, Lad.15 Joseph Ogren, Lad.3 Lt. Thomas O'Hagan, Bat.4 Samuel Oitice, Lad.4 Patrick O'Keefe, Res.1 Capt. William O'Keefe, Div.15 (D) Eric Olsen, Lad.15 Jeffery Olsen, Eng.10 Steven Olson, Lad.3 Kevin O'Rourke, Res.2 Michael Otten, Lad.35
Jeffery Palazzo, Res.5 B.C. Orio Palmer, Bat.7 Frank Palombo, Lad.105 Paul Pansini, Eng.10 B.C. John Paolillo, Bat.11 James Pappageorge, Eng.23 Robert Parro, Eng.8 Durrell Pearsall, Res.4 Lt. Glenn Perry, Bat.12 Lt. Philip Petti, Bat.7 Lt. Kevin Pfeifer, Eng. 33 Lt. Kenneth Phelan, Bat.32 Christopher Pickford, Eng.201 Shawn Powell, Eng.207 Vincent Princiotta, Lad.7 Kevin Prior, Sqd.252 B.C. Richard Prunty, Bat.2 (D)
Lincoln Quappe, Res.2 Lt. Michael Quilty, Lad.11 Ricardo Quinn, Paramedic
Leonard Ragaglia, Eng.54 Michael Ragusa, Eng.279 Edward Rall, Res.2 Adam Rand, Sqd.288 Donald Regan, Res.3 Lt. Robert Regan, Lad.118 Christian Regenhard, Lad.131 Kevin Reilly, Eng.207 Lt. Vernon Richard, Lad.7 James Riches, Eng.4 Joseph Rivelli, Lad.25 Michael Roberts, Eng.214 Michael E. Roberts, Lad.35 Anthony Rodriguez, Eng.279 Matthew Rogan, Lad.11 Nicholas Rossomando, Res.5 Paul Ruback, Lad.25 Stephen Russell, Eng.55 Lt. Michael Russo, S.O.C. B.C. Matthew Ryan, Bat.1
Thomas Sabella, Lad.13 Christopher Santora, Eng.54 John Santore, Lad.5 (D) Gregory Saucedo, Lad.5 Dennis Scauso, H.M. 1 John Schardt, Eng.201 B.C. Fred Scheffold, Bat.12 Thomas Schoales, Eng.4 Gerard Schrang, Res.3 (D) Gregory Sikorsky, Sqd.41 Stephen Siller, Sqd.1 Stanley Smagala Jr, Eng.226 Kevin Smith, H.M. 1 Leon Smith Jr, Lad 118 Robert Spear Jr, Eng.26 Joseph Spor, Res.3 B.C. Lawrence Stack, Bat.50 Cpt. Timothy Stackpole, Div.11 (D) Gregory Stajk, Lad.13 Jeffery Stark, Eng.230 Benjamin Suarez, Lad.21 Daniel Suhr, Eng.216 (D) Lt. Christopher Sullivan, Lad.111 Brian Sweeney, Res.1
Sean Tallon, Lad.10 Allan Tarasiewicz, Res.5 Paul Tegtmeier, Eng.4 John Tierney, Lad.9 John Tipping II, Lad.4 Hector Tirado Jr, Eng.23
Richard Vanhine, Sqd.41 Peter Vega, Lad.118 Lawrence Veling, Eng.235 John Vigiano II, Lad.132 Sergio Villanueva, Lad.132 Lawrence Virgilio, Sqd.18 (D)
Lt. Robert Wallace, Eng.205 Jeffery Walz, Lad. 9 Lt. Michael Warchola, Lad.5 (D) Capt. Patrick Waters, S.O.C. Kenneth Watson, Eng.214 Michael Weinberg, Eng.1 (D) David Weiss, Res.1 Timothy Welty, Sqd.288 Eugene Whelan, Eng.230 Edward White, Eng.230 Mark Whitford, Eng.23 Lt. Glenn Wilkinson, Eng.238 (D) B.C. John Williamson, Bat.6 (D) Capt. David Wooley, Lad.4
Raymond York, Eng.285 (D)


There has often been much discrepancy about ladder work, placement of ladders, and to which windows we would throw our ladders. This is always an interesting topic as there are many opinions and everyone has what they feel is logical for the task at hand. Most ladder companies whether it is a truck, quint, or tower ladder carry a wide assortment of ground ladders. Any length from 14’ foot straight ladders to a 45’ Bangor pole ladders are common ground ladders for a truck company. I haven’t seen the 45’ Bangor pole ladder ever thrown, as it requires too many personnel to get it into position, but having it available isn’t a bad idea. But the rest of these ladders, are ladders that can and should be thrown by one or two people at a max. It should be common practice that ladders get thrown for every assignment where there is a report of fire (not to be confused with if there is fire or not: “A Report of Fire”). A few things to consider when throwing ladders should be ladder placement, placement order and knowing where each ladder can reach on a structure (reference points).

In our early stages of learning about firefighting we are taught that there are numerous ways to position a ladder for the type of operation that we are engaging in. We are taught that if we want to position a ladder to ventilate a window we throw a ladder to the right or left of the window, keeping in consideration wind direction. For roof operations, we position the ladder 4 to 5 rungs above the roofline. If we are conducting rescue operations, well then we want to position the ladder just at or below the sill. That’s important too. All of these placement tactics are pretty accurate however; aside from roof ops, the best practice is throwing the ladder for rescue. Rescue is the easiest way to get a ladder in place. By doing this we are always prepared for the removal of a victim and if need be self extrication of a fellow firefighter. While the ladder is in place for rescue operations, we can still use this placement for ventilation as well. Often times we will even “slam” the ladder into the window while getting it into position, allowing the window to break, and start the process of allowing heat and gases to escape before we go up and clear it out all the way. Note that when we clean out a window we take out all the glass and sash and turn it into a complete opening that allows easier access for victim or firefighter removal.

Placement Order:
Some officers would be content with ladders just getting thrown, let alone the order in which ladders get thrown to what windows. When throwing ground ladders there is a rhyme or reason to the order in which the ladders should be thrown and to what windows. The first ladder positioned, should be placed for rescue to where the report of fire is or to where the most active fire is present. We do this because this is where the majority of our personnel will be working. Our first ladder to that window allows an exit if a victim is found, or allows an escape route should something go terribly wrong in that room. From there, all the rest of the ladders that get thrown should be placed to windows of the next most dangerous area to the least dangerous of areas. Don’t forget the rear of the structure has to be laddered as well. When throwing ladders to the rear of a structure, it should be a common practice that the first person that goes to the rear should always radio back to command the conditions that he or she observes on the backside. This keeps everyone in the loop as to conditions on the side that everyone can’t see. Ladders thrown on this side should be done in the same placement fashion as the front side.

Essentially when the fire is out and you step back and look at the structure, every ladder should be thrown to every access point on the structure where people could or will be working. No ladder should be thrown to just a wall or thrown just to be thrown. Every one of them should be thrown for a reason and to a legit location.

It’s a good practice to have some kind of idea of where the different length ladders will reach on different types of structures. Below is quick reference guide for your basic compliment of ground ladders carried on most truck companies. Keep in mind that not every dwelling has the same exact height from floor to floor, but these distances & reference points are just estimated. This chart is a great chart to print, laminate and tape in the back or side doors of your ladder compartment.


One of the more challenging fires in a single family dwelling is a fire in a Balloon frame structure. Fires in these structures will tax manpower quickly. The main challenge is getting to the fire and cutting it off, if left unchecked fire can spread laterally as well as horizontally. Augustin Taylor introduced balloon frame construction in 1883. Taylor, a Chicago carpenter erected the St. Mary's church at Fort Dearborn. He used the idea to nail wall studs together rather than use a post and frame assembly method. With the advent of machine-made nails made it possible the throw up an entire wall at once without the skilled labor necessary to do the cutting and framing required for post and frame construction.

In balloon frame construction the studs run 2 or more stories high from the foundation to the eave line. The channel between the studs may be open from the cellar to the attic and the joist channels (floor) may be open from wall to wall.

A small fire in the basement can enter the stud channel and spread to the upper floors to the attic. The fire can burn in the floor destroying the integrity for the floor assembly thus leading to a collapse. A small exterior fire that penetrates the wall can run to the attic.
When faced with fire in these structures command officers must be prepared to put at least one enginnd one truck on each floor. Crews must bring tools to pull walls, ceilings and floors. Engine
companies must be ready to extinguish fires as the truck reveals it. Truck crews need to get to the roof and open it because fire will eventually reach the attic. Smoke will travel throughout the entire structure and may make it hard to find the origin of the fire. A thermal imager camera will assist with finding the seat of the fire.

Communities that have many balloon frame construction may have special tools to help combat fires in the stud channels. The navy nozzle with a 90 degree pipe can get into the stud channels and apply water up and down quickly.

Personnel must recognize balloon frame structures. All areas of the structure must be checked, this includes the basement and the attic. These firs are labor intensive. Without adequate manpower fires can spread quickly and risk major property damage and possible firefighter injuries. Line officers and Command officers need to call for manpower early in the incident.

As we continue to explore and develop options to get our job done with less staffing and more tasks, there are some options that require a step-back analysis to consider the option’s practicality, merit and safety. One such option is using the 20’ straight ladder in lieu of a 24’ or 28’ ladder- the thought being straight ladders are one-person ladders and are easier to place. And a 20’ ladder gets us in the ballpark of a 24’ ladder in some instances.


Capitol Fire Training instructors Sam Villani and Dave Polikoff were tasked by the Ocean City, MD Fire Department to write, assist with administering, and assess the practical portion of their Captain’s promotional process. The two were chosen based on their experience with promotional processes. Polikoff has written, facilitated and assessed both in and out of jurisdiction and Villani has facilitated and role played in Lieutenant, Captain and Battalion Chief’s processes- both instructors are company officers in Montgomery County, MD.Capitol Fire Training can assist your department with all elements of the promotional process and is developing an Officer Candidate School (OCS) that can be tailored to your organizations policies, procedures and practices. As with our Engine, Truck, Rescue, and Rapid Intervention Company courses, we are prepared to present to you a package that best represents your department’s needs. For more information on how you can have your company assessed or help with your promotional process contact us today.

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