I think I am going to use this section for jabbering about my job. As a big city firefighter you see lots of wild stuff. From the best in people to the absolute worst. Often its mind numbingly boring. Other times the adrenaline rush is enough to stop your heart. (sometimes it does) Our brothers suffer a very high rate of cardiac arrest. Its just too much stress and exertion some times. If your not in reasonably good shape you can get seriously hurt or worse.
This week we had a kid drown down at Penns landing. I say a kid because at 21 you pretty much are a kid, maybe at the big end, but still a kid. I was working out of Old City. It seems like every time I work at this particular station we get power failures or people in the river. This night we had both. The power failure was fairly run of the mill for that area. A transformer blew somewhere in the neighborhood and left about two blocks without power(including Elfreths Alley). Not much we can do. Its a job for PECO. Prior to that we got a call for a man in the river. It usually means a possible drowning. Sometimes (like the last time I had this call) people decide to jump in the river and go for a swim. They look surprised when we get them out, like what’s all the fuss? Its way more insane than it seems. The Delaware river is a dangerous body of water. I strongly advise anyone from trying to swim across, in or around it for that matter. On this night I had a bad feeling about this call from the outset. Whenever we see lots of police cars going with us that’s a clue something is up. They get information out over the air before we do. When we got to the river a guy in his boxers was explaining that their friend had tried to swim across an enclosed area to a dock / walkway about 30-40 yards away. When he went under he and another friend tried to swim out to him but no luck. By the time we got the call and got on location it had been about 15 t0 20 minutes. The police divers went in and the Coast Guard searched the area. Our guys started probing with hooks and thermal cameras but it was too late. We were told they were drinking and he decided to go for a swim. He got tired, slipped under and that was it. His body was recovered a day or so later not far from where he went down. I thought he was still in there and would be found close by when we left. Sad, such a waste. Life is fragile. Be safe.

3 Responses to SHOP TALK

  1. kateykakes says:

    Off topic: Where was that pic taken? Landsowne & Haverford maybe?

  2. Captain Den says:

    I think it was out that way, not 100% sure…

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