The New York City Fire Department or the Fire Department of New York (FDNY) has the responsibility for protecting the citizens and property of New York City's five boroughs from fires and fire hazards, providing emergency medical services, technical rescue as well as providing first response to biological, chemical and radioactive hazards.
The Fire Department of New York is the largest municipal fire department in the United States with approximately 11,400 uniformed officers and firefighters. It faces an extraordinarily varied challenge. In addition to responding to building types that range from wood-frame single family homes to high-rise structures, there are the many bridges and tunnels as well as the largest subway system in the United States. These challenges add yet another level of firefighting complexity and have led to the creation of the motto for FDNY firefighters of New York’s Bravest.
1648 - 1865
The Fire Department of New York traces its roots back to 1648 when the first fire ordinance was adopted in what then was the Dutch settlement of New Amsterdam. Hooks, ladders and buckets were financed through the collection of fines for dirty chimneys, and a fire watch was established consisting of eight wardens which were drawn from the male population. An organization known as the prowlers but given the nickname the rattle watch patrolled the streets with buckets, ladders and hooks from nine in the evening until dawn looking for fires. 250 leather shoe buckets were manufactured by local Dutch shoemakers in 1658, and these bucket brigades are regarded as the beginning of the New York Fire Department.
In 1664 New Amsterdam became a British settlement and was renamed New York. The first New York fire brigade entered service in 1731 equipped with two hand-drawn pumpers which had been transported from London, England. These two pumpers formed Engine Company 1 and Engine Company 2. These were the first fire engines to be used in the American colonies, and all able-bodied citizens were required respond to a fire alarm and to participate in the extinguishing under the supervision of the Aldermen.
As the city continued to expand, the General Assembly formed the Volunteer Fire Department of the City of New York in December of 1737. It required the participation of every sober and discreet man to be ready for service day and night, and to be industrious, diligent and vigilant.
1865 - 1898
In 1865 a state act was passed to create the Metropolitan Fire District and the Metropolitan Fire Department (MFD). The MFD lasted until 1870 when the Tweed Charter ended state control in the city. As a result, a new Board of Fire Commissioners was created and the establishment of the Fire Department of the City of New York (FDNY) came into existence. The change met with a mixed reaction from the citizens, and some of the eliminated volunteers became bitter and resentful which resulted in both political battles and street fights.
Subsequently, the volunteers declared that they would accept the decision and, despite their disappointment, continue to function until properly relieved by paid units. Volunteer fire fighters were also given preference when the paid department recruited its members. With the introduction of the steam engine the need for volunteers to pump water disappeared, and the introduction of horses to draw the engines eliminated the problem of hauling fire engines by hand.
Initially, the paid fire service only covered New York City (present day Manhattan), until the act of 1865 which united Brooklyn with New York to form the Metropolitan District. The same year the fire department consisted of 13 Chief Officers and 552 Company Officers and firemen. The officers and firemen worked a continuous tour of duty, with 3 hours a day off for meals and one day off a month, and were paid salaries according to their rank or grade. 1865 also saw the first adoption of regulations, although they were fairly strict and straitlaced.
Following several large fires in 1866 which resulted in excessive fire losses and a rise in insurance rates, the fire department was reorganized under the command of General Alexander Schaler, and with military discipline the paid department reached its full potential which resulted in a general reduction in fire losses. In 1870 the merit system of promotion in the Fire Department was established.
Westchester County (which would later become the Bronx) was annexed by New York in 1874 and the volunteers there were phased out and replaced by the paid department. The borough of Queens became a part of New York in 1887, and here also the volunteers began to be replaced by the paid department. (The last volunteer unit in the Bronx disbanded in 1928 and the last 5 volunteer units in Queens are still in operation, such as Broad Channel VFD which has 102 years in service.
1898 - 2001
On January 1, 1898 the different areas of New York were consolidated, which ushered the Fire Department into a new era. All the fire forces in the various sections were brought under the unified command of the first Commissioner in the history of the Fire Department. This same year Richmond (now Staten Island) became a part of the City of New York, but the volunteers units there remained in place until they were gradually replaced by paid units in 1915, 1928, 1932 and 1937 when only two volunteers units remained.
The unification of the Fire Department, which took place in 1898, would pave the way for many changes. In 1909 the Fire Department received its first piece of motorized fire engine. On March 25, 1911 a fire in the Triangle Shirtwaist Company killed 146 workers, most of whom where young female immigrants. Later the same year the fire college was formed to train new fire fighters, and in 1912 the Bureau of Fire Prevention was created.
In 1919 the Uniformed Firefighters Association was formed. Tower ladders and Superpumpers were introduced in 1965; other technical advances included the introduction of high pressure water systems, the creation of a Marine fleet, adoption of vastly improved working conditions and the utilization of improved radio communications. In 1982 the first female fire fighter joined the ranks of the Fire Department, and in 1997 emergency medical services came under the control of the FDNY.
September 11, 2001 attacks
Main article: Rescue and recovery effort after the September 11, 2001 attacks
For a list of the FDNY firefighters killed during the September 11, 2001 attacks see In memoriam: FDNY 9/11
On September 11, 2001 terrorists associated with al-Qaeda hijacked four commercial passenger aircraft and used these as weapons in order to attack targets in New York and Washington, DC during the September 11, 2001 attacks. Two aircraft, American Airlines Flight 11 and United Airlines Flight 175 were flown by the terrorists into the twin towers of the World Trade Center, causing massive damage both during impact, when the jet fuel was consumed by fire, and finally when the buildings collapsed.
New York City firefighters were deployed to the World Trade Center minutes after the first aircraft struck the north tower. Chief Brass set up a command center in the lobby as firefighters climbed up the stairs. A mobile command center was also set-up outside on Vesey Street, but was destroyed when the buildings collapsed. A command post was then set-up at a firehouse in Greenwich Village. The FDNY deployed 200 units to the site, with more than 400 firefighters on the scene when the buildings collapsed.
Many firefighters arrived at the World Trade Center without meeting at the command centers. Problems with radio communication caused commanders to lose contact with many of the firefighters who went into the buildings; those firefighters were unable to hear evacuation orders.  There was practically no communication with the police, who had helicopters at the scene. When the towers collapsed, hundreds were killed or trapped within. 343 of the FDNY firefighters and paramedics who responded to the attacks on September 11, 2001 lost their lives, and others were injured. The casualties included First Deputy Commissioner William M. Feehan and Chief of Department Peter Ganci.
Meanwhile, average response times to fires elsewhere in the city that day only rose by one minute, to 5.5 minutes. Many of the surviving fire fighters continued to work alternating 24-hour shifts. Firefighters and EMT's came from hundreds of miles around New York City, including numerous volunteer units in Upstate New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. The NJ State First Aid Council which represents Volunteer First Aid and Rescue Squads also reported that hundreds of the Councils' ambulances and rescue personnel also went to Ground Zero.
In the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks the Fire Department has rebuilt itself and continues to serve the people of New York. During the 2003 North American blackout the FDNY was called on to rescue hundreds of people from stranded elevators in approximately 800 Manhattan high-rise office and apartment buildings. The entire fire department was called in to handle the many fires which resulted, reportedly from people using candles for light.
At the beginning of the 21st the Fire Department of New York had expanded together with the city and now protects more than eight million residents and an area of 320 square miles. The FDNY is administered by the Fire Commissioner, who in turn is appointed by and responsible to the Mayor. The uniformed force consists of more than 11,400 Fire Officers and fire fighters under the command of the Chief of Department. The New York City Fire Department also includes 2,800 Emergency Medical Technicians, Paramedics and Supervisors assigned to the Bureau of Emergency Medical Service (EMS), and 1,200 civilian employees.
(Sources:  )
Ideology and core competencies
The FDNY. derives its name from the Tweed Charter which created the Fire Department of the City of New York. This is in contrast to most other fire departments in the U.S. where the name of the city precedes the word fire department.
The FDNY ideology of aggressive interior fire attack grew naturally out of the building and population density that characterize the city. 
The contribution of Irish Americans to the FDNY dates back to the formation of the paid fire department. During the Civil War New York's Irish firefighters were the backbone of the New York Fire Zouaves (or 11th New York Volunteer Infantry), a highly decorated unit. 
In addition to firefighting, rescue and HAZMAT, FDNY stations ambulances throughout the city and supplies paramedics and EMTs. Together with ambulances run by certain participating hospitals and private companies, it is known as the FDNY EMS Command, which is the largest pre-hospital care provider in the world, responding to over 1.3 million calls each year. All of the FDNY EMS Command members are also trained to the HAZMAT Operations level. Some EMS units are trained to the Haz Mat Technician level allowing them to provide emergency medical care and decontamination in a hazardous environment, in addition to their normal 911 duties.
Members of the FDNY have the nickname "New York's Bravest".
Members of the FDNY EMS have the nickname "New York's Best".
Saving of life and property
Search and rescue
CBRN/HAZMAT life safety and mass decontamination
Fire protection inspections
Pre-hospital emergency medical care
Fire calls for 2005
For the period 1 January 2005, to 31 December 2005 the FDNY dealt with the following number of calls:
Structural fires: 28,455
Non-structural fires: 22,940
Non-fire emergencies: 199,643
Medical emergencies: 202,526
Malicious false alarms: 32,138
There were 3362 serious fires in 2005, defined as those declared 'all hands' or above in severity, response times to incidents were roughly between four and a half, and five and a half minutes from the time of call.
White male firefighters dominate the FDNY, accounting for about 90% of the department. The FDNY has been trying to recruit ethnic minorities and women to join it for years, department officials engaged in a 1.4 million dollar recruitment drive aimed at increasing the number of minority applicants. The physical examination has been changed to make the test easier but the Vulcan Society, an FDNY fraternity that represents black firefighters, have contended the changes actually hurt minority applicants who always fare much better on the physical than written portion of the exam. This allowed minority applicants to make up points they would lose on the written but the new pass/fail system eliminates that possibility. In August 2006, they announced changes in eligibility requirements for application to the FDNY and a recruiting drive intended to boost diversity by changing entrance requirements.
Of the FDNY's 11,600 uniformed members, there are about 620 Hispanics, or 5.4%, and about 330 blacks - fewer than 3%. The department has 30 women members and about 70 Asians. The federal government is investigating the FDNY for possible discrimination in its hiring practices.
How incidents are transmitted and received
There are four ways in which fires can be reported in New York City:
1. TELEPHONE ALARMS - This is the most common method in which a civilian uses a telephone to dial one of the following:
(a) "9-1-1" (...where the call is routed through the N.Y.P.D.);
(b) a special, "7-digit telephone number" published in each borough for the specific purpose of reporting fires;
(c) "0" [i.e., zero] (...where the call is routed through a telephone company "operator").
2. ALARM BOXES - The second most common method is by means of F.D.N.Y. alarm boxes in the street and in certain public buildings [e.g., schools, hospitals, etc.] as well as highways, bridges, etc. These consist of the following types:
(a) "mechanical" boxes (...also commonly called "pull-boxes"...) in which a spring-wound mechanism alternately opens and closes an electrical circuit thereby rendering a coded number linked to the specific location of the box; (Until the advent of the STARFIRE "C.A.D.S." [i.e., "Computer-Assisted Dispatch System"], dispatchers had to physically count the "taps" from mechanical boxes when they were received in the central offices. For a time, a "paper punch" system was also used, but it proved ineffective as the number and frequency of alarms from mechanical boxes increased significantly in the 1960s and '70s. Today, a "B.A.R.S." [i.e., "Box Alarm Readout System"] display handles that aspect of the job.)
(b) "E.R.S." [i.e., "Emergency Reporting System"] boxes that are equipped with both F.D.N.Y. and N.Y.P.D. buttons allowing either department's dispatcher to have direct voice communication with a reporting party; (E.R.S. boxes began to replace mechanical boxes [...the earliest examples of which date back to the 1800s...] in many areas of the City beginning in the 1970s. Manhattan, for example, is entirely E.R.S.-equipped.)
3. "CLASS 3" ALARMS - Less common than the other two means of reporting fires are so-called "Class 3"s which are routed through commercial alarm companies. These firms monitor sprinkler systems, standpipes, smoke detectors and internal pull-stations in non-public spaces such as factories, warehouses, stores, office buildings and the like. When alarms are received from such accounts, these outfits pass the information along to the F.D.N.Y. central offices usually by special, dedicated circuits. (F.D.N.Y. "special building boxes" are also called "Class 3"s, but are relegated to public buildings, highways, etc., as noted above.)
4. VERBAL ALARMS - This is the least-frequently-used method. It refers to an instance in which a civilian "verbally" reports a fire directly to a firehouse or to a unit in the field, or when firefighters discover a fire themselves [e.g., while responding to, operating at or returning from another assignment] as opposed to their having been notified of same by the F.D.N.Y. dispatchers in the usual manner.
When a member of the public dials 911 they speak with an NYPD call taker who assigns the call to where it needs to go based on the information provided.
If it is police related, it is transferred to another NYPD dispatcher.
If it is on a bridge or in a port or other body of water, the Port Authority of NY and NJ is notified.
If it is a fire, hazmat, or rescue incident, the FDNY gets it. The FDNY also answers a few EMS calls, all others go to the FDNY EMS central office.
FDNY communications office
The initial call to the FDNY communications office is usually taken by the Alarm Receipt Dispatcher (ARD) who speaks with the caller in order to determine the nature of the emergency. The ARD enters the information into the Starfire computer system, which gives a recommended response based on the information provided. This information is then transferred to the Decision Dispatcher (DD) who decides what units will be assigned to the incident.
When the Decision Dispatcher has made a decision the information is transferred to the supervisor who checks the information to make any changes. The information is also passed to the voice alarm dispatcher who announces the call over the voice alarm to the units in the station and to the radio in/radio out dispatchers who transmit the call via radio to the units (the radio in dispatcher inputs information into the CAD while the radio out dispatcher talks to the unit).
The entire process from initial notification until a unit is dispatched takes approximately 25-30 seconds.
Each address in the city is assigned a box number, based on the closest ERS or "dummy" box. This just gives the companies en route the information on where to go. Rather than say "Respond to a telephone alarm at 123 Fake St.", the units get assigned to a box # - "Respond to telephone alarm, box: 1234." The companies responding get the address and box number over the air, and via their Mobile Data Terminals (MDTs) in the cab of their unit. With all the radio traffic clogging the NYC fire frequencies, the box system saves time, and shortens the duration of radio transmissions.
Critical Information Dispatch System
CIDS stands for Critical Information Dispatch System, and is pronounced by the dispatcher as "Sids". CIDS information which is transmitted to units en route is information that is collected on a building during inspections which might have an impact on fire-fighting operations. Such things as:
type and length of line stretch (or hose),
number of apartments per floor,
unsafe conditions, standpipe conditions, and
anything else the company deems important.
This information is printed on the run ticket and can be read by the dispatcher if requested. This information is also read automatically when a signal 10-75 (working fire) is given or when, due to the number and quality of calls, the dispatcher believes a 10-75 will be given on arrival.
Chief of Department
Chief of Operations
Deputy Assistant Chief
Each fire company in the Department is assigned a specific number of personnel, including a Captain, several lieutenants and a group of firefighters. The term "company assignments" refers to the number of personnel - firefighters and officers assigned to every company. Each has slots for 1 Captain, 3 Lieutenants, and 25 firefighters, although each company may not carry a full roster.
Office of the Fire Commissioner -Nicholas Scoppetta
First Deputy Commissioner - Frank P. Cruthers
Deputy Commissioner, Intergovernmental Affairs & Management Initiatives - Daniel Shacknai
Deputy Commissioner, Public Information - Francis X. Gribbon
Deputy Commissioner, Administration - Douglas White
Deputy Commissioner, Legal Affairs - Mylan Denerstein
Deputy Commissioner, Technology & Support - Milton Fischberger
Assistant Commissioner, Budget & Finance - Stephen G. Rush
Assistant Commissioner, EEO - Paulette Lundy
Chief Fire Marshal/Fire Investigations - Louis F. Garcia
Chief of Department - Salvatore J. Cassano
Chief of Fire Operations - Patrick M. McNally
Assistant Chief of Operations - AC Robert F. Sweeney
Deputy Assistant Chief for Counterrorism/Emergency Preparedness - DAC Joseph W. Pfeifer
Deputy Assistant Chief for Operations Staffing - DAC Joseph J. Ramos
Deputy Assistant Chief for the Special Operations Command - DAC William Siegel
Deputy Assistant Chief - DAC Ronald R. Spadafora
Deputy Assistant Chief for Planning & Strategy - DAC James Manahan, Jr.
Chief of EMS - John J. Peruggia
Chief of Fire Prevention - AC Howard J. Hill
Chief of Training, Education & Curriculum Development - AC Thomas R. Galvin
Chief of Communications - DAC John A. Coloe
Bureau of Operations
Manhattan Borough - AC Michael C. Weinlein
Staten Island Borough - AC Thomas J. Haring
Brooklyn Borough - AC Edward Kilduff
Queens Borough - DAC John J. Acerno (Acting)
Bronx Borough - AC James E. Esposito
Division 1- Manhattan
Division 2 (disbanded)
Division 3- Manhattan
Division 4 (disbanded)
Division 5 (disbanded)
Division 6- Bronx & Manhattan North of 125 Street West of 5th Ave & North of 115 East of 5th Ave to 155 st
Division 7- Bronx & Manhattan North of 155th Street
Division 8- Staten Island
Division 9 (disbanded)
Division 10 (disbanded)
Division 11- Brooklyn
Division 12 (disbanded)
Division 13- Queens
Division 14- Queens
Division 15- Brooklyn
Unit breakdown by borough
3 Divisions 8(S.I.),11 and 15
Rescue 2/Collapse 2
2 Squad Companies (both with Hazmat support trucks)
65 Engine Companies
39 Truck Companies (6 tillered, 16 tower-ladders, 17 ladders)
3 Foam Units/1 Foam Tender
2 Satellite Trucks (#3 and #6)
1 Brush Fire Unit
1 Fire Hydrant Thawing Unit
2 Divisions (6 and 7)
Rescue 3/Collapse 3
2 Squad Companies (both with Hazmat support trucks)
30 Engine Companies
27 Truck Companies (1 tillered, 10 tower-ladders, 16 ladders)
1 Foam Unit
1 Satellite Truck (#2)
1 Brush Fire Unit
1 Fire Hydrant Thawing Unit
2 Divisions (13 and 14)
Rescue 4/Collapse 4
2 Squad Companies (both with Hazmat support trucks)
49 Engine Companies
32 Truck Companies (1 tillered, 15 tower-ladders, 17 ladders)
3 Foam Units
1 Satellite Truck (#4)
1 Brush Fire Unit
1 Fire Hydrant Thawing Unit
2 Divisions (1 and 3)
Rescue 1/Collapse 1
Rescue 6/Collapse 6
1 Squad Company (with Hazmat support truck)
42 Engine Companies
32 Truck Companies (5 tillered, 13 tower-ladders, 14 ladders)
2 Foam Units
1 Satellite Truck (#1)
2 High Rise Units
1 Fire Hydrant Thawing Unit
1 Division (8)
Rescue 5 (with Hazmat support truck)
18 Engine Companies
12 Truck Companies (7 tower-ladders, 5 ladders)
3 Foam Units
1 Satellite Truck (#5)
7 Brush Fire Units (5 large trucks, 2 ATVs)
1 Fire Hydrant Thawing Unit
Special Operation and other city-wide Units
3 Marine Companies - Waterborne units
based in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Staten Island
Hazardous Material Company #1 (in Queens)
Various other Hazmat Operation Trucks and Trailers
Decontamination Unit (in Manhattan)
5 Mask Service Units
Mobile Command Center
Various Field Communication Trucks
5 RAC Units
Emergency Medical Service
The provision of emergency medical services in New York City is the largest public, non-profit ambulance partnership in the world. Every day the members of FDNY EMS answer about 3500 calls for help. That is about 1.3 million a year. Although EMS is controlled and dispatched by the Fire Department, approximately half of the emergency 911 ambulances in the system are provided by the non-profit hospitals in New York City. Although some hospitals have provided emergency ambulances for over 125 years, since the 1990s, dozens of hospitals have joined the 911 system, with many subcontracting actual ambulance operations to private ambulance providers.
Care is provided at three distinct levels: Certified First Responder engine companies, staffed by firefighters providing first aid, CPR, and defibrillation; Emergency Medical Technicians-level (EMT) ambulances, whose 2 EMTs provide first aid, defibrillation, and limited medication administration; and Paramedic ambulances, whose 2 paramedics provide critical care. Each level of response is divided into overlapping grids, with the closest FDNY first responder engine company responding to life-threatening emergencies, and the appropriate level of ambulance responding.
FDNY's EMS workers are not firefighters, but civilian employees with "uniformed status" (which is currently the subject of litigation.)  They do not have the same salary, benefits, or pension as firefighters and belong to a separate union. In addition, EMS crews do not spend down time in firehouses or their base stations, rather, ambulances sit at their predesignated cross street location - known as a CSL, for the duration of their tour.
While EMT's and paramedics work well professionally with the firefighters of New York City, there have been occasional "culture clashes" between EMS and Fire, for instance, a plan in 2006 to move ambulances into a firehouse in Queens drew an outcry from both the unions of the firefighters and EMS workers and was ultimately scrapped by the city.  This is due to several factors, the relative little attention paid to the sacrifices and achievements of EMS workers by the public in relation to that paid to firefighters, the increased danger of a firefighter's duties versus that of an EMS worker's, as well as the separate mindset that each respective job entails; firefighters must operate as a team and strictly and swiftly execute the orders they are given by their officers to achieve their goals, while EMT's and paramedics are expected to act overall independently without a great deal, if any, direct supervision or direction.
NYC EMS was originally operated by the city's Health & Hospitals Corporation and was not a part of the Fire Department. The NYC EMS was administratively taken over by FDNY on March 17, 1996. NYC EMS falls under the Chief of EMS who reports to the Chief of Fire Operations.
FDNY EMS organization
Chief of EMS - John J. Peruggia
EMS Administration - Jerry Z. Gombo
EMS Field Services - John S. McFarland
EMS Operations Covering Division - Charles Wells
EMS Logistics & Support - Mark A. Stone
EMS Planning & Strategy - Fredrick Villani
EMS Division 1 - Frances Pascale
EMS Division 2 - Mark Steffens
EMS Division 3 - Robert Hannafey
EMS Division 4 - Robert Browne
EMS Division 5 - James Booth
FDNY EMS unit breakdown by boroughs
EMS Division 1 - Three stations serving Manhattan
EMS Division 2 - Nine stations Seven serving Bronx Two serving Manhattan
EMS Division 3 - Eight stations serving Brooklyn
EMS Division 4 - Seven stations serving Queens
EMS Division 5 - Three stations serving Staten Island One serving Brooklyn
There are presently 10 Volunteer Fire Companies within the City of New York:
West Hamilton Beach VFD, Queens
Broad Channel VFD, Queens 
Point Breeze VFD, Queens 
Rockaway Point VFD, Queens
Roxbury VFD, Queens
Gerritsen Beach VFD, Brooklyn
Aviation Volunteer Hose Co #3, Bronx 
Edgewater Park Volunteer Hose Co #1, Bronx
Richmond Engine Company, Richmondtown
Oceanic Hook & Ladder Company, Staten Island
FDNY Engine 6, an older Seagrave pumper which replaced the newer apparatus which was destroyed on 9/11/2001. The names of the four Engine 6 firefighters lost that day are written on the front door.In recent years, FDNY has used several fire apparatus manufacturers nearly exclusively. Beginning in the late 1970's, Mack and American LaFrance made most of the pumpers and ladder trucks in the FDNY fleet. In the late 1980's, Mack made only chassis’ and not apparatus bodies, so Ward was used for truck bodies. Often Mack would work with Baker Aerialscope to create its tower ladders. Both Mack and American LaFrance left the fire apparatus business in the early 1990's and FDNY turned to Seagrave to develop its next generation of fire truck. FDNY's very specific specifications meant that few apparatus manufacturers could compete with Seagrave for the contract.
Most of the engines in FDNY's fleet are Seagrave Commander II's and include 500 gallon water tanks and either 1000 or 2000 gallon per minute pumps. The 2000gpm pumps are primarily located in the high-rise districts and are considered high pressure pumpers. With the loss of apparatuses which occurred as a result of the September 11 attacks, FDNY began to use engines made by other companies including Ferrara and E-One.
Truck companies are generally equipped with Seagrave aerials. Ladder length varies and often depends on the geographic area to which the unit is assigned. Those in the older sections of the city often use tiller trucks to allow for greater maneuverability. Before Seagrave was the predominant builder, Mack CF's built with Baker tower ladders were popular. Most FDNY aerials are built with 75’, 95' or 100' ladders. Tiller ladders, rear mount ladders and tower ladders are the types of trucks used.
For specialty units, FDNY uses a variety of manufacturers. Its current heavy rescues, often called a 'toolbox on wheels' are made by Pierce (Rescue 1) and E-One/Saulsbury (Rescues 2-5). Other specialty units, including hazardous material units, collapse trucks, and reserve rescues are made by American LaFrance, Pierce, E-One and Freightliner. Various body types include standard heavy rescue bodies, step vans, busses and smaller units built on GMC and Ford pick up truck bodies.
FDNY chiefs generally operate with Chevrolet Suburban's and Ford Expedition's at the Battalion level and Ford Crown Victoria’s and the Division level. As they come up for replacement, the Crown Victoria’s are being changed to Expeditions at the Division level as well. This provides greater command options for the Deputy Chiefs who command the Divisions.
In addition to its engine, truck, and rescue companies, FDNY operates three fireboats as Marine Companies:
Marine 1 – John McKean
Marine 6 – Kevin C. Kane
Marine 9 – Fire Fighter
Reserve – Governor Alfred E. Smith
Former FDNY Marine Unit – John J. Harvey
The Bronx is Burning
The FDNY was the subject of a 1972 documentary Man Alive: The Bronx is Burning, for BBC Television - it was screened in the UK on 27 September 1972 and followed firefighters from a fire house in the South Bronx: Battalion 27, Ladder 31 and Engine 82. It chronicled the appalling conditions the firefighters worked in with roughly one emergency call per hour, and the high rates of arson and malicious calls.
The documentary focused heavily on firefighter Dennis Smith who served in the South Bronx area - he went on to write Report from Engine Co 82 and a number of other books. The documentary reported that he sold the film rights to the book. He has become a prominent speaker on firefighting policy.
FDNY in popular culture
The 2002 documentary film 9/11 features the September 11, 2001 attacks from the perspective of the FDNY.
The 2004 TV series Rescue Me depicts the fictional life for firefighters in a FDNY fire house.
The 2005 film focuses on Squad 252, in Brooklyn, the Rescue Company 1 of Manhattan and the Rescue Company 4 of Queens.
The NBC drama Third Watch that ran from 1999 to 2005 provided a fictionalized and highly dramatized depiction of the firefighters and paramedics of the FDNY. While presented as a procedural drama, it had many glaring inaccuracies, such as depicting the paramedics and firefighters working out of the same quarters, and the paramedics staying in the station when they were not on assignment. In addition, errors in geography, operational procedure, member duties, radio protocol, human pathology and appropriate treatment, unit designations, physics, tactics, and city and state laws and ordinances were common owing to dramatic license . However, due to the popularity of the TV show, it had great influence on the general public's perception of how the FDNY operates .