Show cover of Fully Involved with Unified Fire

Fully Involved with Unified Fire

Join us as we talk firefighting and the issues. Fully Involved with Unified Fire will be a product of UFA's Information Outreach Division aimed at discussing a diverse subject matter. Our goal is to inform ourselves, our peers and our communities about all aspects of Utah’s largest fire department.


Kronos Hack Part 2 Staffing
ON THIS EPISODE:  The Staffing Office once again joins Fully Involved to discuss the Kronos Hack last December further. Captains Chad Simons and Brandon Boshard dive deeper and go in-depth about all the lessons learned. Thank you for listening to Fully Involved with Unified Fire. You can send any comments, questions, or suggestions to Nile at Until next time!GUESTS:Captain | Chad SimonsCaptain | Brandon BoshardCo-Host | Aaron LanceFOLLOW US:Facebook | @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram | @unifiedfireTwitter | @fireauthorityYouTube | Unified FireEpisode recorded March 28, 2022.
42:21 4/13/22
Kronos hack how did our Finance Division react and how did they get through?
28:58 3/21/22
The Staffing Office Talks About You Know What (Staffing)
ON THIS EPISODE:  The Staffing Office joins us to discuss the ins and outs of staffing the largest fire department in Utah. Captains Chad Simons and Brandon Boshard, along with guest host Operations Chief Dusty Dern explain the challenges of filling 111 seats every day and the policies necessary to make that happen... including mandatory staffing. We hear how a shift in the department's staffing paradigm may have created a heavier load for the Staffing Office, but helps us provide better service to our communities. Thank you for listening to Fully Involved with Unified Fire. You can send any comments, questions, or suggestions to Nile at Until next time!GUESTS:Operations Chief | Dusty DernCaptain | Chad SimonsCaptain | Brandon BoshardFOLLOW US:Facebook | @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram | @unifiedfireTwitter | @fireauthorityYouTube | Unified FireEpisode recorded December 7, 2021.
43:28 12/20/21
Build Strong Relationships at Home
ON THIS EPISODE:  Health & Wellness Officer Captain Layne Hilton and Clinical Operations Director Darren Elkins of Blomquist Hale are back in the studio to discuss strengthening relationships at home.We talk about things shared between happy couples, and adjustments that can be made to strengthen a relationship that's struggling.How do you deal with the stress in your life? If you don't have an answer to that question... you may want to take action beyond listening to this podcast.The way we take care of ourselves directly impacts our intimate relationships, so it's important to look at the ways we self-soothe to manage our daily stressors.Throughout the show, Layne recommends listening to Dr. Brené Brown's, The Power of Vulnerability.  Brown provides information on the cultural myth that vulnerability is weakness, and reveals how it is actually our most accurate measure of courage.If you're looking for someone to talk to, reach out to Blomquist Hale, Unified Fire's EAP provider. You can also reach out to Layne directly. Thank you for listening to Fully Involved with Unified Fire. You can send any comments, questions, or suggestions to Nile at Until next time!GUESTS:Captain / Health & Wellness Officer | Layne HiltonClinical Operations Director (Blomquist Hale) | Darren Elkins FOLLOW US:Facebook | @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram | @unifiedfireTwitter | @fireauthorityYouTube | Unified FireEpisode recorded November 29, 2021.
30:22 12/6/21
Managing Stress as a First Responder
ON THIS EPISODE:  Health & Wellness Officer Captain Layne Hilton, and Clinical Operations Director Darren Elkins of Blomquist Hale are back this week to discuss stress. Stress is the number one killer of firefighters, and we talk about why. Depending on how we relate to the stress we're experiencing, the consequences in the body are different. We talk about the importance of having a creative outlet to assist with stress management, the impact stress has on the brain and body, and of course we discuss resources and ways to find help for those struggling to cope with their stress. GUESTS:Captain / Health & Wellness Officer - Layne HiltonClinical Operations Director (Blomquist Hale) - Darren ElkinsFOLLOW US:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityYouTube - Unified FireEpisode recorded August 12, 2021.
29:43 9/16/21
Station Visits with the Chief
ON THIS EPISODE:  Chief Petersen sits down to discuss his station visits, and all that's learned through this lengthy, but invaluable process. He also gives us a glimpse into what he sees coming for next year's visits.GUESTS:Fire Chief - Dan PetersenPublic Information Officer - Aaron LanceFOLLOW US:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityYouTube - Unified FireEpisode recorded August 27, 2021.
39:43 9/3/21
Incident Review: 3 Alarm Fire in Millcreek (06.16.21)
ON THIS EPISODE:  We review the June 16, 2021 three-alarm fire that happened at an apartment complex under construction in Millcreek. Nearly 60 firefighters and 20 apparatus from six surrounding agencies were utilized due to the size and complexity of the fire.News segment courtesy of Fox 13 Salt Lake City. You can view their full article, Massive construction site fire seen across Salt Lake Valley, here.GUESTS:(South Salt Lake Fire Dept.) Captain - Lyndsie Hauck Operations Chief - Dusty DernCaptain - Ken AldridgeCaptain - Jubal Perez FOLLOW US:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityYouTube - Unified FireEpisode recorded August 20, 2021.
27:58 8/24/21
Incident Review: South Jordan Trench Collapse (06.15.21)
ON THIS EPISODE:  South Jordan Fire Department joins us to review the June 15, 2021 incident when a man died after a trench collapsed at a construction site in South Jordan. GUESTS:(South Jordan Fire Dept.) Deputy Chief - Ryan Lessner(South Jordan Fire Dept.) Captain - Jared VelezOperations Chief - Dusty DernCaptain - Travis HobbsEngineer - Jake Schaugaard FOLLOW US:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityYouTube - @unifiedfireEpisode recorded July 3, 2021.
29:46 8/16/21
Post-Pandemic Emergency Management Division Update
ON THIS EPISODE:  We touch base with Emergency Management to discuss their hands-on experience working through the pandemic and what their division's goals look like moving forward.This last year has been different than any other for Emergency Management. A 5.7 earthquake, the windstorm, civil unrest and of course, the COVID-19 pandemic has kept everyone working hard as we dealt with many unknowns.The positive for them through this has been the opportunity to use all that's learned in FEMA classes to be prepared for these emergencies. Operations Unit Leader/Captain Chet Ellis emphasized how we train for short-term instances that are days to weeks. The pandemic presented the new factor of a long-term instance, with it being over a year since their work began. Through this challenge, they have still seen a lot of success. The processes worked and their partnership with the health department has been largely effective in coordinating vaccine efforts.On the horizon for EM:  continued recovery from the pandemic, earthquake and windstorm; an expected busy fire season, as Utah is in a state of emergency due to a continued drought; and getting back into the groove of training that has been on hold.Episode recorded April 4, 2021.GUESTS:Emergency Management Division Chief Clint MechamCaptain / Operations Unit Leader Chet EllisPIO / JIC Manager Tina BrownEM Project Coordinator Valerie GreensidesFOLLOW US:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityYouTube - @unifiedfire
23:51 6/22/21
VEBA 101 - What is the VEBA & Why We Chose This
ON THIS EPISODE:  We discuss a benefit available to all UFA employees upon reaching eligibility requirements. UFA is proposing to the Board a 2% addition to all VEBA accounts for eligible employees, which will create 212 new accounts for employees now added to this benefit. This 2% will give everyone the start to a VEBA account until meeting the requirement to reach the sick leave cap to begin investing. UFA and the employees of UFA own a Voluntary Employees Beneficiary Association (VEBA) plan, managed through Wells Fargo. This is an account UFA contributes funds into, and then that account can be used by employees once they separate employment, usually when they retire, resign, or leave for any other reason. These funds can be used for medical expenses and operates a lot like a FLEX plan, but is for post retirement/post employment. On average, Firefighters in Utah hire around age 27 and stay for about 27 years, which puts them at 54 come retirement. Since they don't qualify for Medicare for another 11 years, VEBA can fill that gap for medical expense coverage.One of the key advantages when investing in a VEBA account is the money is always tax free. It goes into the account, accrues earnings and is reimbursed without being taxed. Though it is restricted to medical expenses, it is a great asset to employees for their future planning. More information is available on our website and in our benefit booklet.GUESTS:Assistant Chief Riley Pilgrim, Chair of VEBA Board of TrusteesHuman Resources Director Arri Woolf, member of VEBA Board of TrusteesCaptain Jeremy Robertson, member of VEBA Board of TrusteesRetired Assistant Chief Bill Brass, member of VEBA Board of TrusteesFOLLOW US:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityYouTube - @unifiedfire
28:41 5/12/21
Catching up with our Fire Prevention Division
On this episode:We catch up with our Fire Prevention Division. Division Chief/Fire Marshal Brad Larson along with Deputy Fire Marshals Dan DeVoogd and Stewart Gray explain the division's unique role in our organization. On a regular basis, Fire Prevention works alongside our community partners to assure that the planning and development of our jurisdiction's construction projects are safe and code compliant. This involves a lot of technical expertise and problem solving capabilities to provide consultation, service and enforcement throughout all phases of the building process. There are nine individuals working in the Fire Prevention Division, with an Inspector position opening soon. Inspectors meet with developers, engineers, architects and city officials regularly, and are a part of the development team that makes sure our community's continue to grow safely. To anyone considering joining Fire Prevention, now is the opportunity to apply. Guests:Fire Marshal/Fire Prevention Division Chief Brad LarsonDeputy Fire Marshal/Captain Dan DeVoogdDeputy Fire Marshal/Unit Leader Stewart GrayFollow us:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityYouTube - @unifiedfire
25:41 4/27/21
Checking in with our Logistics Division - All things Fleet, Facilities and Supply
On this episode:We are checking in with our Logistics Division. Chief Zach Robinson talks through some of the work that's been done since he came into his position about three years ago. Some of the big picture improvements are the implementation of new software for fleet, supply and asset management - these have provided great changes for the division. Many people don't realize how vast the scope of work is that Logistics covers; each of the managers talk more specifically about the sections they oversee, with Fleet Manager Dan Yates, Facilities Manager Larson Wood and Supply Manager Pete Young. At the end we hear what is on the horizon for Logistics and the ground breaking new things coming to our department. Guests:Logistics Division Chief Zach RobinsonFleet Manager Dan YatesFacilities Manager Larson WoodSupply Manager/Paramedic Pete YoungFollow us:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityYouTube - @unifiedfire
25:56 4/16/21
Get to Know our Special Enforcement Division
On this episode:We dive into the responsibilities of our Special Enforcement Division (SED) with Division Chief Steve Ball and two of our Investigators, Steve Bowen and Paul Larsen. Arson and Explosive related incidents are considered two of the most dangerous criminal activities that threaten our citizens. The team utilizes highly-trained and certified canines (K9s) that assist with accelerant and explosives detection. The SED houses an FBI accredited Bomb Squad and conducts investigations for fire related calls for service. If the cause is criminal, they investigate and apprehend offenders. Special Enforcement also manages the SWAT Paramedic Program, conducts Professional Standards investigations as needed, and conducts background investigations for new-hire personnel. We wrap the episode with a discussion on what individuals interested in joining the division can expect. At least a five-year commitment is preferred due to the training and education necessary to work in this specialty.Guests:Special Enforcement Division Chief Steve BallInvestigator Steve BowenInvestigator Paul LarsenFollow us:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityYouTube - @unifiedfire
27:35 4/5/21
Employee Assistance Program (EAP) - We're Here to Help
On this episode:We sit down with Health & Wellness Officer Captain Layne Hilton and one of our Employee Assistance Program providers, Darren Elkins, to discuss the services available through our organization. The foundation of EAP is counseling to help with life's challenges. All employees and family members are eligible to receive EAP benefits. UFA recently switched to Blomquist Hale as our EAP provider because of their specialized First Responder Team. These providers are better equipped to help with the types of hardships we face. Children are eligible to receive assistance too - 95 percent of our current referrals are for family issues. Elementary age kids are really suffering with anxiety related to social integration post pandemic. Blomquist is offering in-person and Zoom sessions to provide service while accommodating for the individual's comfort level. Guests:Captain Layne Hilton, UFA's Health & Wellness OfficerDarren Elkins, Blomquist Hale's Clinical Operations DirectorFollow us:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityYouTube - @unifiedfire
28:01 3/22/21
Incident Review: 3 Alarm Fire in Midvale (01.17.21)
On this episode:We review the 3 alarm fire UFA responded to on Jan. 17, 2021 at the Union Center Medical Complex in Midvale impacting 10 local businesses. Battalion Chief McBride talks through some of the challenges faced while fighting this fire related to problems with water supply and accessibility. Operations Chief Dern touches on the interagency coordination and how well we integrated working with our neighboring agencies. Fire Prevention Division Chief Larson speaks to how fire code has changed since this building was constructed in 1985, before smoke detectors and sprinklers were required. He also explains how our Prevention Division is taking a proactive approach to educate and make contact in our communities to avoid a loss like this in the future. News segment courtesy of Fox 13 Salt Lake City. You can view their full article here.Guests:Operations Chief Dusty DernBattalion Chief Scott McBrideFire Prevention Division Chief Brad LarsonFollow us:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityYouTube - @unifiedfire
29:53 3/9/21
Introducing UFA's New Medical Director, Dr. BZ
On this episode:We introduce our new Medical Director, Dr. BZ. The purpose of the Medical Director is to essentially watch over and make sure we are doing things correctly in the EMS world.  We function and operate under their medical license. Dr. BZ trained as an Emergency Medicine Physician and joined UFA in December 2020. He is a member of the teaching faculty at the University of Utah Hospitals and Clinics and is a member of Utah's FEMA Urban Search & Rescue Task Force 1. During the episode we hear some of the things Dr. BZ wants to focus on and accomplish, as well as changes our service providers can expect.Guests:UFA Medical Director Dr. Graham Brant-ZawadzkiEMS Division Chief Jay TorgersenCaptain Rob AyresParamedic/PIO Matthew McFarlandFollow us:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthority
23:01 3/1/21
Service Delivery to our Canyons
On this episode:The Salt Lake Valley is known for its mountainous landscape and canyon recreation. As emergency responders in these areas, we face unique challenges providing service and protection to these communities. In this episode, we discuss the ways we are optimizing our coverage as we continue to see trends of increased call volume as more people use the canyons. We talk about the difference in the type of calls these crews go on and the importance of their working relationships with partner agencies like Ski Patrol and Search & Rescue. Providing response to the canyons can be challenging, so we are grateful to all those willing to assist in our service delivery.Guests:Fire Chief Dan PetersenOperations Chief Dusty DernBattalion Chief Brian AndertonCaptain Jason CampFollow us:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthority
23:53 2/24/21
Welcome Class 54 - UFA's Largest Recruit Camp Starts Today
On this episode:Today is February 1 - day one of recruit camp for Class 54. With 36 individuals, this will be the largest camp in UFA history. Members of our training staff and cadre join us to give an overview of what the camp will be like, what our recruits can expect, and the adjustments they've made to maintain a cohesive unit while splitting some weeks into two groups. We also learn more about our guests' backgrounds, the readiness they strive for Class 54 to achieve by graduation, and how the staff/cadre deal with the pressure of shaping the future of UFA. Needless to say, we all have first day jitters.This episode is brought to you by The Chad Mustache Wax, not only available in November.Guests:HazMat Specialist Sean Garrett (Fire Training staff)Paramedic Tommy Miller (Cadre)Paramedic Chad Pate (Cadre) Follow us:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthority
38:32 2/1/21
COVID-19 Update and Vaccine Q&A
On this episode:In the first part of the show, we are joined over the phone by Specialist Bethany Bitter. She relays her difficult, recent experience with COVID-19 and what the lengthy recovery process has been like. Captain Greensides also talks about his experience and notes the similarities and differences between their cases. Later on, Dr. Graham BZ joins to discuss the vaccines available to our department and answer some of the questions people have who are hesitant to get it. Guests:Operations Chief Dusty DernHealth & Safety Officer Captain Mike GreensidesHazMat Specialist Bethany BitterUFA Medical Director Dr. Graham Brant-ZawadzkiFollow us:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthority
44:48 1/13/21
Training New Firefighters During COVID-19
On this episode: We talk with some of our Fire Training staff and cadre members about the challenges faced for Recruit Class 53 in the midst of COVID-19. Five weeks into the new firefighters' camp, the pandemic hit and that brought uncertainty in how to proceed. We discuss what made this camp unique and how this time of hardship affected the recruits, but also led to strengthened relationships. Guests: Captain Dustan DinkelHazMat Specialist Sean Garrett Paramedic Micah StrattonEngineer Molly SwensonFollow us: Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthority
36:21 9/16/20
Incident Review: Salt Lake Community College 2 Alarm Fire (06.22.20)
On this episode: On June 22, 2020, a fire started on the roof of the Applied Technology Building at the Salt Lake Community College Taylorsville campus. Initial reports came in of heavy smoke coming from the roof at around 5:20 pm. Crews immediately struck a 2nd alarm, asking for more resources due to the size and complexity of the incident. This fire presented unique challenges with building construction and wind. We break down these challenges with those who first arrived and identify some important lessons learned with a couple of our chief officers.Guests: Operations Chief Dusty Dern Battalion Chief Steve Prokopis Captain Brandon Boshard Heavy Rescue Technician Sean Brass Follow us: Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthority
41:52 8/31/20
Rapid Intervention Teams (RIT)
On this episode: We're talking Rapid Intervention Teams (RIT), these are teams dedicated to firefighter rescue. RIT is a 911 for working firefighters when they are in trouble. At Unified Fire, we have crews dedicated to this service. On this episode, we get an inside look at what these valuable teams do, how they train for worst-case scenarios, and talk about an upcoming training opportunity.Guests:Operations Chief Dusty DernCaptain Brandon BoshardCaptain Matt HambletonFollow us:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthority
29:29 7/27/20
Fitness Standard Phase 1
On this episode: We talk about our new, developed fitness standard. We'll look back on how things started over a year ago, why this standard is a need for our department and what the process looks like moving forward to implement it into policy.Guests:Assistant Chief Riley PilgrimHealth & Safety Officer, Captain Mike GreensidesParamedic John MorganFollow us:Facebook - @unifiedfireauthorityInstagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthority
28:40 7/20/20
Strategic Planning the UFA Way
On this episode of Fully Involved with Unified Fire, Director of Communications Nile Easton sits down with Assistant Chief Riley Pilgrim, Division Chief Bryan Case and Public Information Officer Matthew McFarland to discuss our strategic planning process. The Strategic Plan provides guidance for the UFA to be sure the needs of the communities we serve are met. This plan adopts the vision, mission, values, goals, and action items that are integrated into the budget process and reporting mechanisms each year.Follow us on social media:Instagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityFacebook - @unifiedfireauthority
20:14 6/22/20
COVID-19 Antibody Testing
This week on Fully Involved with Unified Fire, PIO Matthew McFarland is joined in the studio with UFA Health & Safety Officer Captain Mike Greensides and Assistant Chief Riley Pilgrim. Dr. Eddie Stenehjem, an infectious diseases physician and medical director of Intermountain Medical Center’s Antibiotic Stewardship Program, calls in to discuss COVID-19 antibody testing. We talk about the test, it's importance and relevance, and how we use this information to move forward as an organization during this pandemic.Follow us on social media:Instagram - @unifiedfireTwitter - @fireauthorityFacebook - @unifiedfireauthority
25:18 5/13/20