Nog enkele foto's van de afgelopen dagen


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NEW ORLEANS Ð U.S. Coast Guard Station New Orleans host firefighters from the Belgian Fire Observer, with crewmembers giving a search and rescue presentation, mission overview and an underway trip on Lake Pontchartrain, May 25, 2011. The organization selects 10 Belgian firefighters annually to participate in an international exchange program, embedding the crew with fire departments across the U.S. for 10 days in order to observe rescue operations, study procedures and share experiences

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U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Elizabeth H. Bordelon.


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En natuurlijk moet er ook gegeten worden

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Lekker, heel lekker.......

20:33 Gepost door Paul Vanlook | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |

Friday in the city...

Around 0930 am, our Belgian Fire Observers walked thru the doors of the New Orleans 911-center. We got a tour of the facility and we were able to talk with the Fire and EMS dispatchers.

Next to the building, a new 15 million $ 911-center was set up that we've got to see to see as well. Some state of the art equipment, they plan to move in during the next couple of months.

Second visit of the day was a walk on the Cypress Grove Cemetary. The first NOFD firefighter was laid to rest here, as well as entire companies. We saw some pretty amazing tombs, all above ground like little mausoleums due to the swamp grounds. 

During lunch in a nearby bar, Superintendant Parrent came to see us. It was time to change out some "thank you words" and presents. 

The afternoon was filled with a visit to the airport fire department, a Best Buy store and the NOFD HQ. At the New Orleans Louis Armstrong International Airport, Nola firefighters took out the newest crashtender. They gave a little demonstration and they took us out for a tour on the runway.  Next to the current ARFF station, a brand new station is being build. A HUUUUUUUGE fire station for 6 guys!

Carl and Patrick arived right on time at their station. The crew made some delicious, awesome, amazing, tastefull and good crawfish!

Now, kitchen is cleaned up, we took the engine out for some..."fire inspections" on Bourbon Street and the Captain made some fired Oreo's....!

Oh yeah...it's the fun crew! The crew with smoke bombs, fire crackers, water balloons,.... Today, it was the full bucket of water day! You should better keep your eyes open when you walk thru some doors at 14's...!


Carl - May 27th 2011 - 1030 pm.















05:33 Gepost door Carl Verstrepen | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |


Photos from the Times-Picayune - NOLA.com


Ondertussen kan je op de bovenstaande link ook een fotoreeks vinden van het bezoek dat we eerder deze week brachten aan het opleidingscentrum.


Ten members from the Belgian Fire Observers organization visit the New Orleans Fire Department training facility and also the Delgado Marine and Industrial fire fighting area on Wednesday, May 25, 2011.

The group will also ride along with the NOFD and stay in area firehouses during their 8 day visit. NOFD trainees battle a simulated ship bilge blaze.





Geslaagde foto's alvast, en alweer een leerrijke ervaring rijker.


21:45 Gepost door Paul Vanlook | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |

Een ware eer voor de VZW Fireobservers

Tijdens het bezoek aan de hoofdstad van de staat Louisiana viel onze vereniging volgende eer te beurt.

In de notulen van de senaatszitting van afgelopen woensdag werd volgende tekst opgenomen, dit ter gelegenheid van het bezoek dat we brachten aan Baton Rouge.

Regular Session,






To welcome fire fighters from Belgium and members of the Belgium Fire Observers Organization to Louisiana; to acknowledge the bravery, strength, selflessness, courage, and true heroism of all fire fighters; to thank these visiting fire fighters for choosing the New Orleans Fire Department and Louisiana to visit and not only to learn but to share their knowledge and experiences with us; and to thank all fire fighters for the bravery and courage they exhibit on a daily basis, never faltering from the oath and duties they have undertaken. WHEREAS, Engineer Carl Verstrepen, Battalion Chief Mark Opstal, Fire Fighter Serge De Bussere, Captain Eddy Depauw, Fire Fighter Stefan Bonne, Lieutenant Jeroen Bollemeijer, Battalion Chief Patrick Wallaert, Fire Fighter Eric Cloot, Engineer Johan Van De Voorde and Lieutenant Sylvain Van Teemsche, all members of the Belgium Fire Department are visiting Louisiana to observe operating procedures and fire fighting techniques of the New Orleans Fire Department; and

WHEREAS, this group of Belgium fire fighters is part of the Belgium Fire Observers Organization in which members visit major fire departments throughout the United States several times each year; and

WHEREAS, this group of Belgium fire fighters are present today in the State Capital in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to observe the Louisiana legislative process, as part of their visit; and WHEREAS, while visiting fire departments around the country, these fire fighters spend time with their brother and sister fire fighters meeting, observing, learning, and gathering information, skills, techniques, and knowledge of operations of our fire departments here in the United States; and

WHEREAS, these brave men from Belgium will ride along with their colleagues, observing their ways of operation, taking a closer look at their equipment, studying their methods of response, and share experiences as to how things are different and/or similar to the way they are done in Europe; and WHEREAS, these fire fighters from Belgium are not only learning from our fire departments but also sharing their knowledge and experience with our fire fighters, providing an opportunity not only to learn from us but also teach us some of their operational skills and knowledge; and

WHEREAS, this visit from the Belgium fire fighters only goes to prove the exceptional and strong bond and comradery the brotherhood/sisterhood of fire fighters all over the world share between each other.

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Legislature of Louisiana hereby welcomes these brave fire fighters from Belgium and members of the Belgium Fire Observers Organization to Louisiana.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Legislature of Louisiana acknowledges the bravery, strength, selflessness, courage, and true heroism of all fire fighters all over the world.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Legislature of Louisiana thanks these visiting fire fighters for choosing the New Orleans Fire Department and Louisiana to visit and not only to learn but to share their knowledge and experiences with us.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Legislature of Louisiana thanks all fire fighters across the country and throughout the world for the bravery and courage they exhibit on a daily basis, never faltering from the oath and duties they have undertaken.






21:30 Gepost door Paul Vanlook | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |

Third day with the NOFD

Last night, Patrick and Carl got up only once. A fire alarm with smoke visible so the engine and the truck were dispatched but cancelled as they drove down the street....

The am activities for today:

We made rendez vous at 7's around 0800 am. Ff. Ryan Mast joined us to go to Holden, LA. A visit to the Ferrara plant was schedulled. Ferrara Fire Apparatus is the foruth largest fire apparatus producer, after Pierce, E One and American LaFrance. Each year, approx. 300 Ferrara engines, trucks, brush trucks or rescues roll out the doors. That's only for new pieces, not for refurbished rigs. It takes somewhere in between 120 and 180 days to build a firetruck but in case of emergency, they can drop it down to 90 days. 

We got a quick but interesting tour thru the production process of this facility. 

After the Ferrara visit we went to Baton Rouge, to the State Capitol. We've got to meet with IAFF representatives of New Orleans and Baton Rouge and they toured us thru the capitol building. We were able to get into the Senate and the House of Representatives, which was in session by the way. 

This morning, some sort of a bill was voted regarding the Belgian Fire Observers. We got proclamations and so in the past by various city councils but this time, we were voted by the House of Representatives of the State of Louisiana...now beat that with a stick!

We sat into a special hearing commission for school fundings. All of the sudden, the hearing was interupted to welcome us and give us a round of applause. 

The Baton Rouge Fire Department Union and the New Orleans Fire Department Union bought us some drinks and a "small" lunch...we've had some good times with those guys! 

They also took us out to the LSU Tiger Stadium and the baseball stadium. Tiger Stadium seats 98000 visitors and we've got the grand tour of this house. We even saw a special Tiger coverage and went up into the VIP lounges! They were setting up for the Bayou Country Superfest for this weekend, I would love to go over there and enjoy the music of Tim McGraw, the Zac Brown Band, Billy Currington, Kenny Chesney, Sugarland,...and many many others...!

Around 0600 pm, all firefighters were back at their stations, getting ready for calls.

Carl and Patrick ate a good BBQ with the third platoon of Station 14, great guys!

The wind picked up, it started to rain and there're lightnings over the city. We just came back from a reported housefire but it turned out it was just some food on the stove.

Ready for another one!


03:49 Gepost door Carl Verstrepen | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |

Station 7 Marc en Eric - gebouwbrand en voertuigbrand 27/05

In de nacht van 26 op 27 mei was er een tussenkomst voor een gebouwbrand. De brand bevond zich achteraan de woning en was snel onder controle.



In de vooravond van 26/05 werd uitgerukt voor een voertuigbrand. De brand beperkte zich tot het motorcompartiment en was snel geblust.


02:46 Gepost door Marc Opstal | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |

Derde dag in New Orleans

Voor onze derde dag wordt opnieuw verzameld in post 7 om 8 uur. Onze gids voor de dag, Firefighter Mast zal ons begeleiden naar Baton Rouge, de hoofdstad van Louisiana.

Alhoewel het wat de oproepen betreft vrij rustig is lijkt iedereen het naar zijn zin te hebben. 

Vandaag staat een bezoek aan de fabriek van Ferrara op het programma. In de vestiging in Holden, LA fabriceren zij een 300 tal voertuigen per jaar. Tijdens de rondleiding kunnen we het productieproces volgen. De meeste voertuigen worden compleet ter plaatse gefabriceerd en afgewerkt.




Na Ferrara rijden we verder richting Baton Rouge, waar we in het Capitool verwacht worden. De vakbondsleiders van de brandweer wachten er ons op en verzorgen een kleine rondleiding.



Een eerste verrassing vernemen we in het huis van afgevaardigden. Deze morgen werd een "bill" (soort wettekst) gestemd omtrent ons bezoek aan Louisiana. Een uniek gebeuren in ons bestaan. We werden voordien wel al enkele malen door een gemeenteraad erkend, doch dit is de eerste maal dat het door de staat gebeurt.

Tijdens de rondleiding wonen we ook kort een commissievergadering bij. Al snel worden we ook hier verwelkomt met een algemeen applaus van de gehele zaal.

Na het Capitool tijd voor de lunch en een drankje. De Union leiders trakteren ons, wat wij uiteraard ten zeerste appreciëren.

Na de lunch begeven we ons richting LSU (Louisiana State University) waar we het plaatselijke voetbal en baseballstadion bezoeken. In het voetbalstadion krijgen we de grand tour, inclusief een korte filmvoorstelling. Het stadion is immens en biedt maar liefst plaats aan 98.000 supporters (allen zitplaatsen). In het baseball stadion wonen we kort de training bij. Alvast één speler wordt getipt als een toekomstige professional.

Omstreeks 17 uur verlaten we Baton Rouge richting New Orleans, een uurtje rijden. Iedereen wordt terug aan zijn kazerne afgezet, hopelijk is er deze avond/nacht wat actie te beleven. 


02:38 Gepost door Marc Opstal | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |


Second day with the NOFD

All Fire Observers were picked up pretty early to be at Station 7 around 0800 am.

Our schedulled morning activity was a visit to the Fire Academy. A class of rookies graduate in about two weeks and they got burn simulations today. While they prepared to start the simulations, we toured the facility thru the trench rescue prop, the confined space prop, the 6 story drill tower,...

When the fire drills were over, we went to a nearby training facility where the instruct in industrial firefighting.

After lunch, a visit to the US Coast Guard Naval Station New Orleans was set up. These guys respond to a large, very large area. Lakes, rivers, bayous, swamps,.... They've about 20 coasties on duty per 24 hours and use 3 Long Range Interceptor II boats, and two 45' Response Boat Medium. We got a tour of the station and the guys talked about their regular operations and operations during Katrina and the BP oil spill. Afterwards, they took us out on the lake for a nice boatride.

Ryan Mast, our NOFD firefighter/tourguide, drove us thru the neighbourhoods who were affected by the storm, back in 2005. Today, almost 6 years after Katrina, you still see the damage of the disaster.

Around 0600 pm, everyone was back at their stations to spend the night and go out on calls.

Patrick and Carl got some fine New Orleans cuisine with a damn good Jambalaya!












03:43 Gepost door Carl Verstrepen | Permalink | Commentaren (4) |  Facebook |


Live New Orleans Radio stream



Live radio scanner voor New Orleans, klik op de link en luister mee naar de alarmering





23:50 Gepost door Paul Vanlook | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |

Enkele beelden uit New Orleans

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23:39 Gepost door Paul Vanlook | Permalink | Commentaren (3) |  Facebook |