Oswego Fire Chief responds to recent problems

In the midst of a State Health Department review into allegations of wrongdoing, the Chief of the Oswego Fire Department has issued a Departmental Order. CNYcentral obtained a copy of Chief Joseph Perry's order dated January 27th.

Perry turned down our request for comment, but the Chief appears to be asserting his authority over the fire department staff. "We have been accused of lack of leadership and guidance and blamed for the recent incidents that have plagued the fire department." The order goes on, "Starting today an Oswego City Fire Department Policy Manual will be handed out. everyone will sign for one and keep it in their locker."

Chief Perry also ordered new training schedules which began February first. The order concludes: "All personnel will be participating in the training even if they had it before." First Assistant Fire Chief Jeff McCrobie says Oswego's firefighters undergo constant training anyway.

The department's ambulance corps has been under fire for more than a month. As CNYcentral was the first to report, a state agency recently suspended the EMT certifications of two firefighters over allegations they refused to transport patients. The State Health Department has also confirmed that they are reviewing the situation to determine if the fire department has violated state health law.

Oswego City Councilor Connie Cosemento says she's glad to see the fire department is proactive. "I was not aware there is no policy for the fire department but you know necessity is the mother of invention and if these fellows and gals think they need one, I suppose that's a good thing."

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