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Episode 57: Interview with Close Call Survivor Jeff Cheshire

057 - Cheshire5Speedway Fire Department (Indiana) Lieutenant Jeff Cheshire recalls an incident where his crew was overrun by changing fire conditions while operating on the third floor of an apartment building fire.



Length: 63 minutes
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On June 30, 2008, an intense wind-driven blaze destroyed an apartment building in Speedway, Indiana. As crews arrive on the scene a large column of smoke filling the sky from the building located along I-465 just north of Hollister Drive.

The fire started around 3:21 pm and quickly spread as high winds from the north pushed the fire further into the building.

Lieutenant Jeff Cheshire, then serving as a firefighter on Engine 202 recounts how his crew got overrun by rapidly changing fire conditions and how another fire crew got blown down a set of stairs but what was described as a backdraft or smoke explosion.

Lessons Learned

  1. The need to pay attention to clues that indicates unusual conditions.
  2. The need to trust your gut and to speak up when you sense something is not right.
  3. The need to overcome your concerns about what others might think of you if you suggest it may be time to leave.
  4. The need to rely on your training and to apply the lessons from training on the fireground.

Link to additional coverage – please click here.


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Safety Dance (1982)
Men Without Hats
GMC – Virgin Records

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Intro music
Safety Dance (1982)
Men Without Hats
GMC – Virgin Records

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The mission of Situational Awareness Matters is simple: Help first responders see the bad things coming… in time to prevent bad outcomes.

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