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Posted by on May 14, 2017 in Remodeling Of Interior |

Common Characteristics of Firefighters

A career as a fire fighter involves a number of aspects such as physical strength, endurance and mental strength. As a fire fighter, you are bound to face great responsibilities and also encounter difficult challenges. At times, body strength and determination aren’t enough; and no matter how much you train as a fire fighter, if you lack essential personal fire fighter qualities, your performance and overall success may suffer.

When you go for an interview as a fire fighter applicant, recruiters will not only look for physical traits, strength, endurance and flexibility; but also your personal qualities. These personal qualities are generally known as the Firefighter Personal Qualities and Attributes (PQAs). Your personality reflects your work ethics. It shows how much you love and value your job of helping other people in jeopardy. So, apart from the physical exam, you will be assessed based on your outlook in life and personal character traits. Therefore, it is important that you understand what are some of the most common characteristics of firefighters:

1. Demonstrate an obligation to Integrity and Diversity

This essentially means that as a firefighter, you should be able to treat all people impartially, whether at the work place or within the community. You also need to be aware of your community. A competent firefighter should always maintain an open approach when dealing with people of diverse backgrounds. You should also be willing to accept other people’s differences such as gender, social background, disability, age, physical appearance, ethnicity and sexual orientation.

Firefighters are also expected to maintain the relevant ideals, be candid, and also be responsible for their own actions. You should be ready to challenge any unbecoming behavior, as long as it is inconsistent with the principles of the Fire Service.

2. Always open to change

The Fire Service is always changing. As with any establishment that has a desire to constantly develop and improve, change is inevitable. In order for that change to be realized effectively, firefighters must accept and be accommodating of it. All great firefighters must understand that there is need for change before applying for the role. In the course of your career as a firefighter there will be numerous changes and working practices that you will need to uphold. Working practices must change as safety procedures, technology and equipment improve.

3. Toughness

The physical burdens of firefighting are crystal clear. Firefighters usually lift and move very heavy equipment. At times, they have to carry people during rescue operations. Typically, they do all of this while wearing heavyweight shielding gear and breathing devices. Resting is often simply not possible during emergencies. Apart from being in excellent physical condition, firefighters need an attitude of determination and hardiness. This is what will help you to make use of your physical abilities to push through difficulties and to endure in the heart of grim situations to save lives and property.

4. Demonstrate a certain degree of confidence and flexibility

As a firefighter, you will at some point attend some tough episodes. Some of these instances will test your emotional stability, physical strength, not to mention your ability to stay calm when everything else around you is going wrong. As other people leave burning buildings, you will be going in, employing your skills and equipment to save property and life. Thus, with all of this in mind, you need to always stay cool and in control of your emotions and especially when emergency situations arise.

Firefighters must always remember their training and learn to concentrate with the task at hand in spite of all the confusion and panicking around. Even when things don’t go according to plan, firefighters must get the job done and learn from their mistakes later on.

5. Have the ability to work with other people

You can’t work alone as a firefighter. You must be able to work as a team. The size of the team will vary, depending on several factors such as the nature of the assignment in hand. However, firefighters always work in teams ranging from 2-20 people. Hence, being able to work effectively as a team member is crucial for the job.

In order for a team to work well and competently, its members need to have a positive relationship. You don’t have to personally like each other, but you need to have a good and concrete working relationship. You won’t always work with members of your fire brigade; you will meet many different teams including Police and Ambulance crews. Wherever your superiors find it appropriate to post you, you will need to be in a position to calm and reassure members of the public.

When you work as a team, you need to always be mindful of the wider team goals. For instance, when given a task that needs executing in short notice, you need to be competent enough to deliver appropriately. Always be on the ready.

It is also very important that you represent the Fire Service positively wherever you go. Obviously, you are definitely proud to work as a firefighter and that should come across in your everyday work. The Fire Service has a vital and esteemed image to keep and it is your job as a firefighter to maintain it.

Others important characteristics include:

  • Being able to communicate effectively
  • Being an apt problem solver
  • Being conscious of situations around you
  • Showing some level of commitment to excellence


The reason why firefighter personal traits are very vital is that unlike tests and other forms of training, personal traits cannot be acquired in a short period of time. In most cases, personality traits must begin earlier on within an individual. When you absorb these distinct and honorable traits first, the mental and physical aspects of the job will certainly follow. Therefore, leading to an effective and superior performance. When it comes to serving others with lots of dedication, Fire Brigades only want what’s best; and for this reason, personal quality assessment is taken very seriously and followed to the letter.

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Posted by on Feb 18, 2017 in Firehouse Reconstruction, Remodeling Of Interior |

Fire Industry Conferences in 2017 – Firehouse Design

For anyone looking to learn about the current trends of firehouse design and architecture, there are two grand-scale conference opportunities in 2017. Firehouse’s Station Design Conference will be held in Fort Worth, Texas in May (it was in Anaheim, California last year). Not to be upstaged, F.I.E.R.O. is hosting what it calls the ‘premier fire station design conference in the country’. The 2017 Fire Station Design Symposium will be in late September in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Firehouse’s Station Design Conference promotes itself as covering the entire scope of building a brand-new fire station. These details include the complete bidding and construction process, construction site costs, selecting a design team, and incorporating the newest technology and equipment. There are so many considerations that don’t get a ton of thought until they become a problem. The 2017 conference will discuss unique troublesome issues such as zoning complications, dealing with city architectural review boards, planning with tree preservation in mind, height or bulk restrictions or building around natural elements such as wetlands, streams or steep hills. Of course, keeping within your budget is a major topic that will be addressed.

Topics that probably never dawned on the fire house architects of yesteryear are also on the agenda. Making your station ‘green’ and efficient, and also how to create gender-friendly locker/shower rooms and bunkrooms. Time will also be devoted to fire fighter safety, protection and training. Sponsors and exhibitors will of course also grace the facility, along with plenty of time to network and brainstorm.

The F.I.E.R.O. (which stands for Fire Industry Equipment Research Organization) Fire Station Design Symposium has held an annual symposium since 2010. It specifically focuses on not only fire stations and training facilities planning to be built but for those already in existence. This event has a schedule full of speakers, demos and exhibitions but one of the big highlights is the annual Design Awards. The goal of these awards is to showcase public safety buildings that not only serve the community but also advance what the personnel who work there can do. Six judges with fire fighting backgrounds and architectural degrees determine the contest winners.

F.I.E.R.O. is a non-profit fire service agency. All income from the symposium is channeled into the following year’s event. All attendees receive a convenient USB thumbdrive with any digital handouts the presenters share.

Between these two events, 2017 looks to be a year of education, sharing, camaraderie and architectural advances in the fire house and fire training facilities department.

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Posted by on Dec 29, 2016 in Remodeling Of Interior |

Andy Warhol’s Fire Station Studio

Many people don’t connect the famous painter Andy Warhol with fire houses, but his first studio was an old fire station on 87th Street near Lexington Avenue in New York City, NY. Hook and Ladder Company 13 had moved out in 1960 to E. 85th Street. The original Hook and Line Company 13 was famous for fighting the horrific Park Place Explosion of August 22, 1891 which claimed lives from several surrounding fire brigades. The fire house was constructed around 1868, with major renovations occurring around 1910s and 1920s. It’s a narrow building with a solo garage door for one fire apparatus. Scrolled keystone and chain motif ornamentation originally decorated the building, but the black roof line décor still remains today.

It was the early 1960s and the fire house rented for $100 a month (although most sources claim $150). Apparently it wasn’t a hot ticket and was easy for Warhol to secure. In November of 1962, Warhol scripted a letter to the Department of Real Estate contracting the rental. Even abandoned with no heat or running water, the old fire house suited him and his first assistant Gerard Malanga just fine. They converted the second floor into a studio.

Silk screening was Warhol’s focus those days and the old fire house probably provided all the room he needed. Although he still utilized his home nearby to showcase this work. Visitors to the fire house were rare (probably due to lack of heat or running water as mentioned above). Rumor has it that he listened to his music at ear splitting volume too. It was here at the fire house where he created his famous portraits of Elvis Presley and Elizabeth Taylor.

Warhol didn’t use the fire house very long and reportedly rented another studio less than a year later. As of 1966 the fire house was still registered with the New York City of Buildings as an art gallery, so it can be assumed that artists continued to use it after Warhol moved out.

In early 2016, the brokers Thomas D. Gammino Jr., Louis Marchetta, and Brett Weisblum from the firm Cushman & Wakefield, listed the historic fire house on the real estate market. Billionaire art dealer Guy Wildenstein decided to sell the property which could easily be converted to condos, boutique shops, or luxury townhomes since he mainly only used it for storage.

An LLC aptly named Warhol Hook and Ladder 13 purchased the entire 5000 square foot building for a whopping $9.975 million in November of 2016.

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Posted by on Oct 20, 2016 in Firehouse Reconstruction, Remodeling Of Interior |

DIY Firehouse Restoration Tips

Restoring a firehouse is a major operation because you will need to re-paint the damaged walls, replace or repair the roof, clean the ceilings, etc. While you can do it yourself, it is important to understand that there is a process which must be followed, and it entails lots of work. But if you have the energy to restore a fire station, you can give the building a whole new look. Many DIYers successfully tackle their own firehouse restoration projects. These DIY firehouse restoration tips will help you restore any firehouse and make it look exquisite.

Paint the walls

The first step is to paint the walls. Finding suitable paints for any structure can be challenging and using the wrong paint will only damage the building, your health and the environment. Moisture is a common issue in most old buildings and it has been believed for years that the sure fire way to combat it is to waterproof the structure through resistant coatings. Spray painter paints apartment buildings fast and efficiently. Be sure to mask and tape the surfaces you need to protect. Warn the neighbors and provide them information on where to park their cars.

Clean the woodwork

The second thing you need to do is clean the woodwork. You can do what professionals do and refinish the woodwork. Realize that water is not bad for wood provided that you don’t immerse it or use too  much. If the woodwork gets too wet, you risk making the glues used on the veneers and joints softer. There’s no secret to cleaning the woodwork. Dip a nice soft cloth in the soapy water and wipe it. Be sure to have a few cloths to change to a clean one as it becomes dirty. Once you’re satisfied with how clean the surface is, apply a high quality paste wax as per the instructions of the manufacturer.

Clean the walls and ceilings

Cleaning the walls and ceilings is an easy task, but, much like painting, it can get a bit strenuous. First, wipe the surface of the ceiling and the walls with the sponge or a soft cloth and use firm strokes. Next, dip the rags in warm water and rinse the ceiling and the walls. Repeat this with the other parts until everything has been properly cleaned. This step my need to be repeated more than once depending on the condition of the firehouse. Match the kind of detergent you use to the type of stain that’s on the ceiling whenever possible. Don’t over-wash your ceilings and walls as seepage of water may occur into the drywall or baseboard.

Repair an old roof

Roofing is hard work. The good thing is that it is doable but you can’t be scared of heights and you must be physically fit. Before committing to this project, climb up the roof. If you can’t comfortably walk around, hire a pro. But if you can walk around comfortably, you are good to go. Start by checking if the roof has small holes. If you spot small holes, patch them using a specially designed primer. If you have a broken or a torn shingle, remove the damaged shingle from the roof, then pull the nails out and take out the damaged shingle. Cut a new shingle to length, slip it into position and fasten it using roofing nails.

Replace old/broken windows

First, remove the glass by extracting the putty that holds it in place. No matter the size of the windowpane, remember to wear gloves when taking out the frame to avoid injuries. Once you have removed it, set down flat on a table, workbench, or even the floor and take out the broken glass. Remove any remaining putty, using a heat gun as necessary to prevent damage to the wood. Next, apply putty around the frame, insert the new windowpane into the frame and press it firmly.  Apply the putty and smooth it using a putty knife. When the putty is dry, you can paint it right away.


Most people think that restoring a firehouse is a difficult undertaking—lined with countless pitfalls and headaches. This is far from the truth. By following these simple DIY steps, you can easily restore a fire station and make it look exquisite.


Here’s a nice story about a firehouse restoration.

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Posted by on Aug 4, 2016 in Firehouse Reconstruction, Remodeling Of Interior |

Rebuilding a Firehouse

To create a self-sustaining community whose inhabitants have everything they need available and provided by the city council for building and constructing, a city should have a certain number of buildings intended for individual services. Hospitals, Law Courts, Police stations and every other similar institution with a precise intention needs to exist. Firehouse is one of those important buildings that every city should have, and this was also common for cities older than two centuries ago.

Starting from scratch.

Every city has a building that dates back to 19th, 18th and even 17th century. Some of those buildings were damaged during the years of service by weather, people or natural disasters. If one of those building is a firehouse, there is still a chance to restore the previous condition of this important building. Being that no city can function without one, Firehouses are extremely important to the safety of a community. If such building is damaged beyond repair, they are usually destroyed after a new one is constructed.

Building-Construction-Companies-Dubai-UAE-Yellow-Pages-DirectoryRestoring the former glory.

If a fire station is damaged but still available for reconstruction, architects and construction companies do their best to restore the condition of a building to make it functional again. Being that a firehouse has a specific interior as well as exterior look, special design is needed in reconstructing such buildings. Although the outside look of such buildings is not relevant to its function, it presents the institution and firemen should be presented with a dignified image, being that they save lives of other by risking their own. To ensure that it presents them in the right manner, it should be modified in such way that it is representable and decent. Concerning the interior, there is a bit more work to do than small making small adjustments to improve visually.

Reconstructing the interior.

For a firehouse to become usable again, serious construction work is needed. For the garage to store fire trucks it needs large area connected with a vertical pole that provides firemen a quick access. Such need for a quick access is needed when emergency calls are reported. Beside a garage, sleeping quarters are equally important to a firehouse. If this part is damaged and the roof collapsed, or doors aren’t functional renovation is needed. Without sleeping quarters, a firehouse can’t function, where constant presence of firemen is needed to achieve full attentiveness to city needs. Training room, although not important as garage and sleeping quarters, is crucial to firemen’s effectiveness. If there are daily training that covers the basic drill of everyday actions of a firefighter, they become more prepared for every situation.

The firefighter services are not needed every day but when the problem occurs they should be quick to act and restoring firehouse functionality does that. Investing in equipment such as firehouses, water pumps also increase their readiness. It is advised to create proper conditions for firefighters to do their job and save lives.

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