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THE COST OF A BROKEN HOUSTON FIRE FLEET

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Houstonians’ safety is being compromised every day by a fire fleet so broken neighborhood fire stations are often empty or unable to respond to calls for help.

Now, for the first time, you can see how your neighborhood fire station is being harmed.

Dolcefino Consulting has spent months analyzing thousands of individual pieces of data to prove how many hours fire stations are left empty or disabled. We now release this report, State of Emergency, the cost of a broken fire fleet, as a gift to Houston taxpayers and a warning to the Mayor.

Dolcefino Consulting began looking into the state of the Houston Fire Department as we watched the nightly news reports of broken fire equipment. The idea that we are sending firefighters to save lives with aging equipment and broken air conditioning systems is unacceptable, especially in the heat of the summer.

“We were shocked by the true magnitude of this crisis, and it is a crisis,” says Wayne Dolcefino, President of Dolcefino Consulting. “When Houstonians drive by their fire station and see it empty they assume the firefighters are out saving lives. This investigation proves that it may simply be the truck is broken and missing. Even if the truck is in the station, it may be unable to fight a fire.”

Over the last two years, Houston Fire Department data reveals first line Houston fire engines have been missing or unable to respond to fires a total of 21,000 hours, a staggering cost to response time when seconds matter.

Engine 55 in District D is located at 11212 Cullen Blvd in south Houston. Engine 55 had 168 breakdown events in the two-year period, with a truck out for more than 400 hours.

“What should also scare Houstonians is that the Fire Department fleet management didn’t even know this. They don’t even track the hours fire stations were left empty until a backup reserve truck could arrive to help. If their records are accurate, some stations may have been left empty for days,” says Dolcefino. “How do you run a fleet management department and not know this?”

Fire Department records provided to Dolcefino Consulting show Station 104 had an engine out of service for nearly 8 days in one incident. Station 29 had a ladder out for 10 and a half days during one event.

Fleet Management records show that when the day begins, sometimes more than 15 percent of the first line Houston fire trucks are in the shop. On some days, more than 20 of the 100 first line engines and ladders are broken.

Dolcefino Consulting has taken the raw data and created a database, so you can now see the truth about the fire truck in your neighborhood, by fire station and by council district.

“Every single city councilmember should read this document and what it means for the safety of their residents. It is time to put the name calling aside and get these heroes the equipment and the pay they deserve, says Dolcefino.”

The broken fleet is costing precious seconds when seconds count.

One example was an apartment fire on January 20, 2018. Fire Engine 10 started smoking just as it left the fire station. It could not respond. It took four and a half hours for a reserve truck to arrive at the station. It is one of many incidents that Houston firefighters are now making public on social media. Instead of acting to fix this emergency, critical firefighters are being investigated.

“If you call for help and your neighborhood fire truck can’t respond, no one can tell you it doesn’t affect the response time,” says Dolcefino. “It is incredibly sad that the response from the fire official in charge of emergency response, Executive Assistant Fire Chief Isaac Garcia, is to try to silence the men and women we count on to save us in an emergency who are begging for help.”

The June 21 memo from Garcia to all employees says that no member of the HFD should be speaking to the media.

The difficulty in analyzing this data exposes another problem. Broken Houston fire trucks go to the same centralized mechanic shop as every other city truck. That should end. We need specialized repairmen for life saving equipment. The current system requires the Houston Fire Department fleet management to be at the mercy of another city department. There is too much bureaucracy.

Where can you see how your neighborhood fire truck fared? How many hours was your fire station left empty or disabled because of an aging fleet?

Go to Dolcefino.com, where you can find a new banner for State of Emergency on the home page. You can download or view the full report and the supporting documents. We have fleet reports from the HFD as well as raw data that can be viewed for specific breakdowns on any date in 2016 and 2017.

The final analysis documents explain the size of the problem in a form that is easy to understand.

If you have tips showing how this State of Emergency affected the call for help to your home, you can contact us on Dolcefino.com.

“We offer our help to the Mayor and City Council to discuss this investigation at length if it helps them fix this problem before someone gets hurt or dies because of a broken fire truck. We all want to know the help will come fast, and from first responders who are respected for the lifesaving work they do,” says Dolcefino. “It is time to treat this as a State of Emergency.”

 

 

We felt it vital to identify the danger in each council district, especially for those members of Houston City Council who do not seem sufficiently alarmed to demand changes. We reviewed maintenance documents for dozens of fire stations where engines and ladders are stationed. We documented maintenance service time gaps, noting the hours, sometimes days, when firefighters do not have a truck to fight fires.

The out of service trucks fall into essentially two categories. They are either parked at the station waiting for maintenance or taken to Fleet Management for analysis and repair. Now you know why sometimes you drive by a fire station and see it is empty. It isn’t always because our firefighters are out on a call.

The results of our inquiry are staggering.

According to the data provided by the Houston Fire Department. first line fire engines were out of service more than 21,000 hours over the two-year period we analyzed. We analyzed data at 90 different fire stations.

First line ladder trucks were out 7743 hours at the 42 fire stations analyzed.

The longest time a single engine was out of service was at Station 104 in District E, when the engine was out for nearly 8 full days. The longest time a ladder was out of service was at Station 29, when the ladder was out for 10 and a half days.

Fire station 55 in District D had 168 events with an engine during the period. Fire station 7 in District D had 96 events with an engine during the period. These are the highest for any station.

Now, we identify the issues in every council district so that no councilmember can claim they weren’t warned. We are offering to meet with any councilmember to discuss this report further.

 

HFD REPORT

District A COUNCILMEMBER BRENDA STARDIG
We have reviewed maintenance records for the following fire stations in District A.
Station 4 is located at 6530 W. Little York
Station 5 is located at 2020 Hollister
Station 38 is located at 1120 Silber
Station 49 is located at 1212 Gessner
Station 50 is located at 4420 Bingle
Station 66 is located at 5800 Teague
Station 77 is located at 10155 Kempwood
Station 90 is located at 16553 Park Row
Station 96 is located at 7409 Willowchase

District A has 9 stations with engines. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 50 had the highest number of hours with an engine out in 2016-2017 at 354 hours, 47 minutes and 51 seconds.
Station 38 had the longest time out for a single event in District A at 138 hours, 1 minute and 4 seconds.
Station 50 had 118 total events related to engines, which is the most in the district.
Station 38 had 5 events with engines out for 10 hours or more and 1 event with an engine out for over 24 hours, which is the most in the district.
District A has 5 stations with ladders. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 38 had the highest number of hours with a ladder out estimated at 500 hours.
Station 96 had the longest time out for a single event at 14 hours, 29 minutes and 37 seconds.
Station 4 had 80 total events related to ladders, which is the most in the district.
Station 4 had 4 events with a ladder out for 10 hours or more, which is the most in the district.

District B COUNCILMEMBER JERRY DAVIS
We have reviewed maintenance records for the following fire stations in District B.
Station 19 is located at 1811 Gregg on the corner of New Orleans St.
Station 32 is located at 8614 Tidwell
Station 39 is located at 5810 Pickfair
Station 42 is located at 8675 Clinton Drive
Station 43 is located at 7330 N. Wayside
Station 56 is located at 5820 E. Little York
Station 63 is located 5626 Will Clayton Pkwy
Station 64 is located at 3000 Greens Rd.
Station 67 is located at 1616 W. Little York
Station 74 is located at 460 Aldine Bender
Station 84 is located at 320 Gears Rd.
*Stations 54 and 99 do not have engines or ladders

District B has 11 stations with engines. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 67 had the highest number of hours out with an engine out in 2016-2017 at 437 hours, 5 minutes and 2 seconds.
Station 43 had the longest time out for a single event in District B at 102 hours, 3 minutes and 4 seconds.
Station 67 had 127 total events related to engines, which is the most in the district.
Station 67 had 7 events with an engine out for 10 hours or more and 3 events with an engine out for 24 hours or more, which is the most in the district.

District B has 6 stations with ladders. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 19 had the highest number of hours with a ladder out estimated at 435 hours.
Station 19 had the longest time out for a single event at 240 hours, 3 minutes and 8 seconds.
Station 67 had 91 total events related to ladders, which is the most in the district.
Station 67 had 2 events with a ladder out for 10 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
Station 19 had 1 event with a ladder out for 24 hours or more, which is the most in the district.

District C COUNCILMEMBER ELLEN COHEN
We have reviewed maintenance records for the following fire stations in District C.
Station 3 is located at 3735 W. Alabama
Station 6 is located at 3402 Washington St. on the corner of Lakin St.
Station 11 is located at 460 T.C. Jester
Station 13 is located at 2215 W. 43rd
Station 16 is located at 1700 Richmond on the corner of Dunlavy St.
Station 37 is located at 7026 Stella Link

Station 62 is located at 1602 Seamist

District C has 7 stations with engines. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 16 had the highest number of hours with an engine out in 2016-2017 at 358 hours, 21 minutes and 4 seconds.
Station 13 had the longest time out for a single event in District C at 156 hours, 2 minutes and 1 second.
Station 3 had 120 total events related to engines, which is the most in the district.
Station 3 had 6 events with an engine out 10 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
Station 16 had 2 events with an engine out for 24 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
District C has 2 stations with ladders. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 16 had the highest number of hours with a ladder out estimated at 210 hours.
Station 16 had the longest time out for a single event at 61 hours, 5 minutes and 4 seconds.
Station 6 had 80 total events related to ladders, which is the most in the district.
Station 6 and 16 had 2 events with a ladder out for 10 hours or more.
Station 16 had 1 event with a ladder out for 24 hours or more.

District D COUNCILMEMBER DWIGHT BOYKINS
We have reviewed maintenance records for the following fire stations in District D.
Station 7 is located at 1402 Elgin on the corner of Austin St.
Station 24 is located at 2625 Reed Rd.
Station 25 is located at 3902 Scott
Station 35 is located at 5535 Van Fleet
Station 46 is located at 3902 Corder on the corner of Scott St.
Station 55 is located at 11212 Cullen Blvd
Station 61 is located at 9726 Monroe on the corner of Swiss Ln.
Station 70 is located at 11410 Beamer
*Stations 81 and 92 do not have engines or ladders

District D has 8 stations with an engine. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.

Station 55 had the highest number of hours with an engine out in 2016-2017 at 413 hours and 40 minutes.
Station 7 had the longest time out for a single event in District D at 47 hours, 5 minutes and 4 seconds.
Station 55 had 168 total events related to engines.
Station 46 and 25 each had 6 events with an engine out for 10 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
Station 7 had 2 events with an engine out for 24 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
District D has 4 stations with ladders. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 55 had the highest number of hours out estimated at 340 hours.
Station 55 had the longest time out for a single event at 129 hours, 3 minutes and 4 seconds.
Station 7 had 96 total events related to ladders, which is the most in the district.
Stations 7 and 55 had 3 events each with a ladder out for 10 hours or more.
Station 55 had 1 event with a ladder out for 24 hours or more.

District E COUNCILMEMBER DAVE MARTIN
We have reviewed maintenance records for the following fire stations in District E.
Station 52 is located 10343 Hartsook
Station 53 is located 13349 Vicksburg
Station 65 is located at 11531 FM 1960 East
Station 71 is located at 15200 Space Center
Station 72 is located at 17401 Saturn Lane
Station 93 is located at 911 FM 1959
Station 94 is located at 235 El Dorado
Station 101 is located at 1863 Kingwood Dr.
Station 102 is located at 4102 W. Lake Houston Parkway
Station 103 is located at 2907 High Valley Dr.
Station 104 is located at 910 Forest Cove Dr.
Station 105 14014 Lake Houston Parkway

District E has 12 stations with an engine. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 104 had the highest number of hours with an engine out in 2016-2017 at 301 hours, 17 minutes and 46 seconds.
Station 104 had the longest time out for a single event in District E at 191 hours, 3 minutes and 2 seconds.
Station 94 had 71 total events related to engines, which is the most for the district.
Stations 53 and 94 each had 5 events with an engine out for 10 hours or more.
Stations 101 and 104 each had 1 event with an engine out for 24 hours or more.
District E has 4 stations with ladders. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 101 had the highest number of hours out estimated at 200 hours.
Station 101 had the longest time out for a single event at 46 hours, 26 minutes and 23 seconds.
Station 93 had 40 total events related to ladders, which is the most in the district.
Station 102 had 4 events with a ladder out for 10 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
Station 101 had 3 events with a ladder out for 24 hours or more, which is the most in the district.

District F COUNCILMEMBER STEVE LE
We have reviewed maintenance records for the following fire stations in District F.
Station 10 is located at 6600 Corporate
Station 60 is located at 2925 Jeanetta
Station 76 is located at 7200 Cook Rd.
Station 83 is located at 3350 Breezewood

District F has 4 stations with an engine. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 60 had the highest number of hours with an engine out in 2016-2017 at 568 hours, 50 minutes and 8 seconds.
Station 10 had the longest time out for a single event in District F at 91 hours, 8 minutes and 2 seconds.
Station 60 had 127 total events related to engines, which is the highest in the district.
Station 60 had 10 events with an engine out for 10 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
Station 60 had 4 events with an engine out for 24 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
District F has 2 stations with ladders. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 76 had the highest number of hours out estimated at 140 hours.
Station 76 had the longest time out for a single event at 11 hours, 2 minutes and 8 seconds.
Station 76 had 73 total events related to ladders, which is the most in the district.
Station 76 had 2 events with a ladder out for 10 hours or more.

District G COUNCILMEMBER GREG TRAVIS
We have reviewed maintenance records for the following fire stations in District G.
Station 2 is located at 5880 Woodway
Station 57 is located at 13602 Memorial
Station 69 is located 1102 West Belt South
Station 75 is located at 1995 S. Dairy Ashford
Station 78 is located at 15100 Memorial Dr.
Station 86 is located at 14300 Briar Forest

District G has 6 stations with an engine. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 75 had the highest number of hours with an engine out in 2016-2017 at 299 hours, 52 minutes and 24 seconds.
Station 78 had the longest time out for a single event in District G at 18 hours, 53 minutes and 55 seconds.
Station 75 had 90 total events related to engines, which is the most in the district.
Station 75 had 7 total events with an engine out for 10 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
District G has 3 stations with ladders. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 75 had the highest number of hours out estimated at 210 hours.
Station 75 had the longest time out for a single event at 14 hours, 5 minutes and 42 seconds.
Station 78 had 66 total events related to ladders, which is the most in the district.
Station 78 had events with a ladder out for 10 hours or more, which is the most in the district.

District H COUNCILMEMBER KARLA CISNEROS
We have reviewed maintenance records for the following fire stations in District H.
Station 9 is located at 702 Hogan
Station 12 is located at 1502 Alber
Station 15 is located at 5306 N. Main
Station 17 is located at 2805 Navigation
Station 27 is located at 6515 Lyons
Station 30 is located at 6702 Irvington
Station 31 is located at 222 W. Crosstimbers on the corner of Old Yale St.
Station 34 is located at 3100 Laura Koppe on the corner of Arkansas St.
Station 41 is located at 805 Pearl
Station 58 is located at 10413 Fulton

District H has 10 stations with an engine. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 34 had the highest number of hours with an engine out in 2016-2017 at 339 hours, 19 minutes and 6 seconds.
Station 41 had the longest time out for a single event in District H at 148 hours, 2 minutes and 3 seconds.
Station 34 had 133 total events related to engines, which is the most in the district.
Station 31 had 9 events with an engine out for 10 hours or more and 2 events with an engine out for 24 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
District H has 2 stations with ladders. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 31 had the highest number of hours out estimated at 160 hours.
Station 34 had longest time out for a single event at 12 hours, 36 minutes and 52 seconds.
Station 31 had 75 total events related to ladders, which is the most in the district.

District I COUNCILMEMBER ROBERT GALLEGOS
We have reviewed maintenance records for the following fire stations in District I.
Station 8 is located at 1919 Louisiana
Station 18 is located at 619 Telephone between Eddington St. and S. Lockwood Dr.
Station 20 is located at 6902 Navigation on the corner of 69th St.
Station 22 is located at 7825 Harrisburg
Station 23 is located at 8005 Lawndale
Station 26 is located at 7111 Dixie, near corner of Chaffin St.
Station 29, is located at 4831 Galveston Rd. on the corner of Ahrens St.
Station 36, is located at 7720 Airport Blvd. near E. Rent Car Rd.
Station 40 is located at 5830 Old Spanish Trail
Station 44 is located at 675 Maxey near the corner of Church Rd.
Station 45 is located at 4910 N. McCarty

District I, has 12 stations with an engine. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 8 had the highest number of hours with an engine out in 2016-2017 at 394 hours, 29 minutes and 51 seconds.
Station 44 had the longest time out for a single event in District I at 102 hours, 4 minutes and 1 second.
Station 8 had 135 events related to an engine, which is the most in the district.
Station 44 had 7 events with an engine out for 10 hours or more and 2 events with an engine out for 24 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
District I has 7 stations with ladders. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 29 had the highest number of hours out estimated at 405 hours.
Station 29 had the longest time out for a single event at 251 hours, 2 minutes and 2 seconds.
Station 18 had 78 total events related to a ladder, which is the most in the district.
Station 45 had 3 events with a ladder out for 10 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
Station 29 had 1 event with a ladder out for 25 hours or more.

District J COUNCILMEMBER MIKE LASTER
We have reviewed maintenance records for the following fire stations in District J.
Station 28 is located at 3000 Chimney Rock near corner of Delores St.
Station 51 located at 6902 Bellaire on the corner of Bintliff Dr.
Station 68 is located at 8602 Bissonnet on the corner of S. Gessner
Station 73 is located at 9640 Wilcrest

District J has 4 stations with an engine. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 28 had the highest number of hours with an engine out in 2016-2017 at 371 hours, 2 minutes and 28 seconds.
Station 51 had the longest time out for a single event in District J at 61 hours, 4 minutes and 5 seconds.
Station 28 had 134 events related to an engine, which is the most in the district.
Station 51 had 10 events with an engine out for 10 hours or more and 1 event with an engine out for 24 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
District J has 3 stations with ladders. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 68 had the highest number of hours out estimated at 370 hours.
Station 68 had the longest time out for a single event at 144 hours, 5 minutes and 3 seconds.
Station 28 had 95 total events related to ladders, which is the most in the district.
Station 68 had 4 events with a ladder out for 10 hours or more and 3 events with a ladder out for 24 hours or more, which is the most in the district.

District K COUNCILMEMBER MARTHA CASTEX-TATUM
We have reviewed maintenance records for the following fire stations in District K
Station 21 is located at 10515 S. Main
Station 33 is located at 7117 Fannin between Lyndon St and Lehall St.
Station 47 is located at 2615 Tidewater
Station 48 is located at 11616 Chimney Rock
Station 59 is located at 13925 S. Post Oak on the corner of Prudence Dr.
Station 80 is located at 16111 Chimney Rock
Station 82 is located at 11250 Braesridge

District K has 7 stations with an engine.
Station 47 had the highest number of hours with an engine out in 2016-2017 at 374 hours, 31 minutes and 28 seconds.
Station 21 had the longest time out for a single event in District K at 159 hours, 3 minutes and 2 seconds.
Station 47 had 120 events related to an engine, which is the most in the district.
Station 47 had 7 events occur with an engine out for 10 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
Station 48 had 2 events with an engine out for 24 hours or more, which is the most in the district.
District K has 4 stations with ladders. Here are some of the statistics that stand out.
Station 59 had the highest number of hours estimated at 350 hours.
Station 59 had the longest time out for a single event at 157 hours, 4 minutes and 4 seconds.
Station 33 had 75 total events related to ladders, which is the most in the district.
Station 59 had 3 events with a ladder out for 10 hours or more and 1 event with a ladder out for 24 hours or more, which is the most in the district.

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