Saturday, February 6, 2010

DeKalb Public Safety Director William Miller to speak at Monday's Dunwoody City Council Meeting

Monday, February 8th
Dunwoody City Hall
Dunwoody, GA 30346
7:00 p.m. - Watch Live

On Monday at the request of the Mayor and Council, Mr. William Miller the Public Safety Director of DeKalb County will be addressing the Dunwoody City Council; and I believe answering a few questions from the Council.  Let me personally thank Mr. Miller in advance for agreeing to come to our meeting to address the tragedy that occurred on Houghton Court even though the full investigation is not complete.  It is my personal belief after talking to hundreds of citizens prior to incorporation about what changes they wanted for the new city of Dunwoody, that the fire rescue services were not only considered adequate but they were touted as being very good.  One very sad event does not change that perception for me and I am still very proud to have the men and women of DeKalb Fire Rescue serving the City of Dunwoody.  

Does that mean that I don't want to ask tough questions about the level of service being provided?  Ask about the level of training and certifications like paramedics available at each station house, on each shift?  Ask why one of the pieces of equipment failed to start when needed?  It is that line of questioning that I want to take up with Mr. Miller because again it is my personal belief that the DeKalb Fire Officers will be thoroughly retrained because of this incident and the policies updated whereby a citizen like Ms. Bartlett will never again be left to face the fire in her home alone.

Please do me a favor if you see a DeKalb Fireman, Thank him.   Thank him for his service because that officer has more then likely risked his life for the good of the community, more than once.   Thank him for continuing to serve this fine community with the dedication that has always existed and that he will continue to do so.  Remember that God made Firemen so Policemen would have heroes and I would hate to have this community turn on these service men when collectively they too are in mourning because of the sad situation that occurred. 

DeKalb Fire Update.

Resolution to re-appoint members to Board of Ethics.
Janet Webb & Wade Wright- Term to expire on 01-26-2013

PUBLIC HEARING & FIRST READ – Ordinance amending Chapter 27 of the City of Dunwoody Code of Ordinances by amending certain public notice signage requirements for zoning actions.

PUBLIC HEARING & First READ – Ordinance amending Chapter 27 of the City of Dunwoody Code of Ordinances by amending composition of the Design Review Advisory Committee.


Dunwoody Mom said...

Thank him for his service because that officer has more then likely risked his life for the good of the community, more than once. Thank him for continuing to serve this fine community with the dedication that has always existed and that he will continue to do so


Bob said...

Several neighbors have called me over the past two weeks, since the death of one of our Dunwoody residents in that tragic house fire. Nothing can replace the loss the family and friends have suffered and I know all of Dunwoody mourns the tragic loss .

To date 5 DeKalb Firefighters including the Chief have paid for that mistake with the loss of their jobs and in many cases their pensions.

What concerns me are the reports that several Dunwoody residents have been approaching DeKalb fire fighters and personally attacking their qualifications, dedication and commitment to serve the City of Dunwoody.

For as long as I can remember The DeKalb County Fire and rescue have done an extrodinary job protecting our community. I find it outrageous that some residents are subjecting these brave men to taunts and insults in a random manner. Many, if not most of the firefighters had nothing to do with last weeks events. Taunts and negative comments only worsen the moral of the remaining members of the Fire Department.

I agree with Dunwoody Mom that these men deserve our support and a thank you.

Let us not paint the entire department for the tragic events of last week

Bob Lundsten
Planning Commissioner
City of Dunwoody
DeKalb County

Bob Fiscella said...

Thankfully the vast majority have the common sense not to hold all firefighters responsible for the actions of a few.

Dunwoody Mom said...

Our family lived through the tornado that tore through Dunwoody in 1998. The response, protection and assistance of the DeKalb public safety officials is something for which I will never forget and always be grateful.

TwoDogsTrucking said...

Asking tough questions. Sorry but it sounds like the council will be playing politics, lecturing the “evil” DeKalb County and pointing fingers of blame. There is no doubt that mistakes were made on this call but remember this is one call out of thousands of calls handled by these firemen without a mistake.

My questions (not tough) about public safety for the city council:
Is Dunwoody a member of DeKalb Emergency Management Agency and if not, why not?
Is Dunwoody planning to join the Sandy Springs/Johns Creek 911 partnership (Chattcomm)?
How is it a good idea for a 911 call placed in Dunwoody to be routed to a private company in Sandy Springs and then routed back to DeKalb 911 for dispatch to emergency services when currently a 911 call placed from Dunwoody goes directly to DeKalb 911 and then to emergency services?
Will this private company’s 911 service be as open with records as DeKalb 911 was with this incident?
The Dunwoody Police run two 12 hour patrol shifts to cover a day. Each shift needs to cover 84 hours out of a 7 day week. Each shift is assigned 1 watch commander, assuming the watch commander works 40 hours of the shift who’s commanding the other 44 hours?
Is it correct to assume that for 44 hours (particularly on night shift) out of a week the highest rank on duty in Dunwoody is a sergeant?
Prior to the incorporation vote residents were promised better services than the county provided. Is the council willing to support a referendum allowing Dunwoody residents and businesses an opt-out and return to county service if they do not feel the city is living up to their promises?

GaryRayBetz said...

Back in Chicago, firefighters were shown the greatest reverence and admiration of all the city's public servants, from the iconic photo of the fireman carrying the child from "Our Lady of the Angels" school fire that devastated the city and made us all weep, to their recent dramatic rescue of window washers from a Chicago high rise.

And in my family's 18 years in Dunwoody the DeKalb County Fire Department has received and earned the same respect from us with their professionalism, integrity, and bravery.

One of my children was so inspired by a 2nd grade visit to a DeKalb County fire station that his career choice had always been that of a fireman, and he still vacillates between continuing to study pre-med at UGA or get a degree in chemical or mechanical engineering and eventually become a firefighter.

And my wife cashiers at the Georgetown Kroger where the local DeKalb County fire house at times will purchase their food supplies, and she gets a chance to see what a real man looks like when they check out in her aisle (i.e. if the firefighter is a male, of course).

DeKalb County Firefighters have our family's deepest and sincere respect and gratitude, and have done nothing to lose it.

Platos Republic said...


Whom do you blame for the recent fire related death here in Dunwoody?

Do you think she would be alive had at least one fireman gotten off the truck and walked up to the house (the house that was clearly identified by a physical address in the 911 call)?

I do not think the chief should have quit his job, nor do I think DeKalb should have fired 5 firemen over this. But clearly, when a person dies due to the error of another, there will be action taken.

GaryRayBetz said...

To answer your inquiry, Plato old pal, I'd say it was force majeure, vis major.

Platos Republic said...

sure, blame the French.

Servant said...

Thanx for all the positive comments here for the Fire Department I have been a Firefighter all of my adult life and have served and lived in Dunwoody for the majority of my career. Basically the Fire Department has broken the public trust and we are striving very hard on every call to earn it back on every encounter we have with someone in need. Some of us have had some encounters with some very angry citizens and it has been hurtful to be judged as a group not as an individual.I know the healing process will be slow and I pray for the Bartlet family Again thank you for the kind words here.

John Heneghan said...

Family Of Dunwoody Woman Killed In Fire Reaches Settlement With DeKalb County

County Awards Family of Ann Bartlett $200,000 But Does Not Admit Wrongdoing

A year after a Dunwoody woman died in a fire, her family has reached a settlement with DeKalb County.

Last January, Ann Bartlett called 911. The firefighters who responded never got out of their trucks to get a closer look at the home. Hours later, firefighters were called back to the home. By that time, flames had engulfed the house and Bartlett was dead.

DeKalb County and five firefighters were named in a lawsuit in April. CBS Atlanta News obtained documents detailing the settlement. It awards the Bartlett family $200,000 and releases the county and firefighters from any further legal action.

Ruth Bartlett said she and her sisters are hopeful DeKalb County is making the appropriate changes.

As a result of the Bartlett case, interim DeKalb County Fire Chief Eddie O'Brien said the department has made changes to several operational procedures.

According to O'Brien, these are the changes:

1. Full review and revision of the Incident Command guideline. Distributed and education completed.

2. Clarify with personnel that Command shall be established on all calls.

3. A Battalion Chief will proceed to the location of reported fire to verify findings of the Incident Commander (Unit on scene). Previously, the Incident Commander could cancel all additional incoming units if they could handle the incident.

4. A 360 walk around of the location of a reported fire. Previous guideline stated that a size up occurs and the update included a walk around be completed with the Nothing Showing mode and other modes of operation.

5. Clarification on level 1 staging. Previous guideline stated additional units stage and wait for assignments. New guideline states that the staged units are not exempt from the responsibility of command and safety if other units are neglecting their duties. This is a clarification in the event that the first unit fails to follow the Incident Command guideline that the staged unit shall step in and handle critical factors.

6. Clarification on what is expected if an address is not located. The AOIC/Officer shall establish command at the dispatched location and then request additional information from the communications center.

7. Add additional critical factors to the guideline. They include Address, Call Back Number, Information on the MDT, Location of Incident, Size Up and a 360 view.

8. Education on ANI/ALI. This is the term used by the Communications Center to verify where a 911 call originated from. ANI is the Automatic Number Identification and ALI is Automatic Location Identification. This is a verification that is associated with a home phone line that is used to confirm where a call originates from. This contains the callers address, phone number and who the number is assigned to.

9. Review of the AOIC class. This is the Acting Officer In Charge Class that is used to train personnel to be certified to be an acting officer.

10. Review of GIS mapping that has been updated on the MDT (Mobile Data Terminal), the computer in the vehicle. The system locates an address that units are dispatched too and places a red dot in the vicinity of the location. This information is validated as an actual address in the official county tax records. Employees can manually place an address in the field to verify or use this tool to look up street addresses.