Worcester Fire Department External Review Reveals Problems | State


WORCESTER, Mass. (AP) – An independent review of the Worcester Fire Department commissioned after a firefighter’s death in 2019 revealed issues requiring “immediate response.”

Emergency Services Consulting International report 248 released on Monday revealed a poor internal communication system and on-site management and called for a change in the leadership structure.

The report was commissioned after Lt. Jason Menard died while battling a fire in 2019, but the department has recorded nine deaths in the line of duty over the past 22 years, including six in 1999 during ‘a fire in a warehouse.

The report makes 10 major recommendations, including appointing a deputy city manager or fire marshal to take over after current fire chief Michael Lavoie retires early next year.

The report also found that poor management on site and lack of accountability “is fundamental to deaths in the line of duty.”

He also found that the chain of communication in the department is “broken, causing even the best of planned programs to fail, or being undermined due to a lack of explanation of the purpose, need or vision. “.

City manager Edward Augustus Jr. said he plans to follow the recommendations of the report, which will be presented to city council on Wednesday.

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