This year's annual observance of the Fallen Firefighter Memorial is scheduled for Friday, October 19 at 10 AM at the Memorial site located at Fire Station #1, 611 Liberty Street.
The month of October wasted no time in showcasing that last month's unusual lack of truly significant incidents was, in fact, an outrageous anomaly. The morning of October 1, just after 6:30 AM, units were dispatched to an apartment fire in the 7500 block of Beach Boulevard, specifially the Magnolia Point apartments. As the first arriving crews from Fire Stations 20 and 28 arrived on scene they could see a ground floor apartment unit within an 8 unit encompassing, two story building, belching forth heavy smoke and fire. A young, adult male outside the aforementioned apartment proclaimed that he 'jumped out of the window' to escape the blaze. The victim was immediately transported, in stable condition, to Memorial Hospital by Rescue 28. The fire itself seemed, initially, to be nothing more than an average, mundane challenge for the firefighters. With the building quickly evacuated, the aggressive interior attack measures appeared to be successful as the area of origin was promptly secured. With the ceiling in the process of removal by the interior sector, the sudden appearance of flames along the eaves followed by fire visible through the roof showcased the tenacity of this particular foe. Another focused and deliberate attempt, greatly assisted by the presence of a firewall, eventually resulted in the incident deemed under control after a total expenditure of 45 minutes of physical effort. In the aftermath an assessment of all displaced individuals requiring Red Cross assistance resulted in a figure hovering in the vicinity of twenty, with the State Fire Marshal's office called to the scene to determine the cause.
It isn't very often that the topic of a hurricane would be addressed this late into the season, but that's exactly what happened over the weekend of the annual Florida-Georgia football classic, Saturday October 27. Although Hurricane Sandy was well offshore, her effects to our area did bring about a significant impact in the form of high winds, dangerous surf and rough waters coupled with swift currents on the St. John's River. Fortunately, the football festivities were not extraordinarily impacted by the weather conditions and damage accounts throughout the region were minimal.