Houston Fire Department

  • Blogs

    September 3, 2014

    Fire Chief: Radio Problems Played Role in Southwest Inn Tragedy

    Radio communications hampered rescue efforts in the May 2013 fire of a hotel that took the lives of four Houston firefighters, Houston Fire Department Executive Assistant Chief Richard Mann said Tuesday. Mann said at a press conference that the department had just upgraded to a new radio communica ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 26, 2014

    Are Ghosts to Blame for Montrose Blaze?

    Could ghosts have started yesterday's huge fire that destroyed a $50-million apartment complex in Montrose? As KHOU reported earlier this week, the construction was obnoxiously close to the Magnolia Cemetery. Blame the lack of setbacks on some of these apartment complexes going up in the area. The ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 25, 2014

    Breaking News (Updated): Apocalyptic Fire Ravaging Montrose Apartment Complex (w/ Video)

    Check out our slideshow of the fire. Update 2:32 p.m.: We talked to eyewitness Kim Cortez who works in the Wortham Tower across from the fire. She says that in less than five minutes it went from being a small fire on the roof of the apartments to the full on blaze you see in the photos above and b ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 28, 2013

    The 5 Best Things to Eat or Drink This Weekend: Food Truck Friday, Firefighter BBQ Benefit & More

    All Day Happy Hour @ L'Olivier Friday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m., Saturday, 5-11 p.m. 240 Westheimer Rd. In honor of Pride Houston 2013, L'Olivier is offering an all day happy hour Friday and Saturday. Chef Olivier Ciesielski has created $6 appetizers, including beef sliders with pomme frites and avocado pan ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 20, 2013

    Electrical Explosion in Downtown Houston Sends Five Workers to Hospital

    An electrical explosion in downtown Houston this morning sent five Centerpoint Energy workers to the hospital, according to the Houston Fire Department. Ruy Lozano, HFD's spokesman, said the burns were all significant. "The flash burn was very significant to the majority of the bodies," Lozano told ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 14, 2013

    Guns and Hoses: How You Can Help the Families of the Four Fallen Houston Firefighters

    If you're looking for the definition of courage, a good place to start would be along Houston's Southwest Freeway back on May 31, where a burning hotel and restaurant took the lives of four Houston area firefighters and injured five more. Most of us see a fire like that, and our first instinct is ... More >>

  • News

    June 13, 2013
  • Blogs

    June 6, 2013

    Houston Firefighters Honored at Reliant Stadium Memorial

    Fire trucks from across Texas rumbled through the streets of Houston before dawn to be a part of a procession that would lead into Reliant Stadium. The trucks filled the front stadium parking lot, silent with lights flashing as they moved into the stadium parking lot an hour before the memorial ser ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 4, 2013

    Memorial for Fallen Firefighters Scheduled as Investigation Continues

    Last Friday, a call went out around noon for a fire that seems to have started in the kitchens of the Southwest Inn. Firefighters from the Houston Fire Department showed up, because that's what they do. The fire was massive, a five-alarm blaze being battled by more than 200 firefighters from 60 unit ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 28, 2013

    Three-Alarm Fire Breaks Out at Sorrento in Montrose

    Five Houston Fire Department ladder trucks responded to a three-alarm fire that broke out this morning at Sorrento, a popular Italian restaurant on Lower Westheimer. The fire started at the restaurant around 9 a.m., and had been downgraded to a one-alarm fire by 10:30 a.m. "No one hurt at Sorrento, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 1, 2012

    Jarmaine Darnell Simon: Charged With Arson In Azul Lounge Blaze

    A Houston man has been charged with second-degree arson in connection with the September 18 blaze at a southside nightclub. Jarmaine Darnell Simon, 23, is charged with setting the fire at Azul Lounge at 9880 Buffalo Speedway about 4:30 a.m. that day, destroying the club that is near Reliant Stadium ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 10, 2012

    The Broken Spoke Goes Up in Smoke: Pictures and Video

    UPDATE: A press release from the Houston Fire Department appears below. The Broken Spoke Cafe caught fire this afternoon around 3 p.m. and was still blazing around 3:45 p.m., when at least eight Houston Fire Department ladder trucks were hard at work putting the flames out. It is not known at this ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 23, 2012

    Photo: Dolce Vita Damaged by Fire

    Popular Montrose pizzeria Dolce Vita was damaged today by a fire that started at around 3:30 a.m. this morning. As reported by KPRC, the fire started in a Dumpster outside the rear of the restaurant and the flames soon spread to Dolce Vita itself. "Firefighters arrived on scene within four minutes ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 4, 2012

    Jaime Mata, Gabino Silva: Two Suspects in Chilling Arson Attempt Caught on Video Surrender

    Both suspects caught on video barricading the front door of a crowded bar and then setting it on fire have turned themselves in to authorities. First was Jaime Mata, who did most of the work captured on tape, who told police he was surrendering because "his face was all over the news," the Houston ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 14, 2012

    Thomas Dillion: 22-Year HFD Vet Dies on Duty

    A longtime Houston firefighter died this morning while on a call, but HFD said the death did not appear to be fire-related. Senior Captain Thomas W. Dillion, 49, was on the scene of a small kitchen fire in the 8500 block of Cook Road about 8:30 this morning when he collapsed, HFD says. He was take ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 12, 2011

    Unidentified Male in Murder-Suicide, Bayou Body Count No. 154

    Fox 26's take on it.​Two men were dead after a murder-suicide on the west side last night, Houston police say. Their names have not been released pending notification of family members, but they were discovered about 10:40 p.m. in the 6300 block of Deerwood Road, near the Houston Country Club ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 4, 2011

    The Scene of A Fantastic Metro Crash: Conveniently, Near Lawyers' Offices

    At around 9 a.m., a dump truck headed eastbound on Capitol was struck by a southbound MetroRail train. The truck was knocked up on the sidewalk, where it came to rest very near the door to Ziggy's deli. The train derailed, but both vehicles remained upright. A statement from the Houston Fire Depart ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 13, 2011

    Uh-Oh: George Bush Park Is (Sorta) on Fire (UPDATED)

    ​This photo, taken from a local resident's front yard, shows a smoky fire in George Bush Park on the far west side. The Houston Fire Department does report "a grass fire" and sent a unit out at 4:31 p.m. UPDATE: 22 units have been sent out, HFD says (see end of item). It doesn't sound too ba ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 8, 2011

    Comment of the Day: A Better HFD Patch for Magnolia Park

    ​We have some great commenters here on Hair Balls, and it's time we paid some damn attention to them. So we'll be highlighting a Comment of the Day each morning, from the previous day's work. Maybe two comments, even. This will all be determined by a highly rigorous scientific formula involv ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 8, 2011

    Yes, That's Wildfire Smoke You're Seeing and Smelling (UPDATE: HISD Cancels/Re-Schedules Some Games)

    Photo by GalgenTXThis is the Bastrop fire, but smoke is smoke.​The weather here is pretty perfect right now, in terms of heat and humidity. But in terms of dryness, it's still a bitch. You probably noticed a smoky smell this morning and even some haze. And yes, the source is probably what you ... More >>

  • Calendar

    September 8, 2011
  • News

    July 14, 2011

    The Shuttle's Souvenir Load

    20,000 flags and 10,000 patches aboard

  • Blogs

    June 24, 2011

    The Wildfires Come to Houston

    It didn't look like this.​The city of Houston proper has pretty much avoided the wildfires and grassfires that have been afflicting Texas, but today was different. The Houston Fire Department spent 90 minutes putting out a grassfire between Old Galveston Road and the Gulf Freeway just north o ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 1, 2011

    Camera Catches Arsonist Red-Handed

    HFDThe arsonist in his element.​Houston Fire Department investigators are still trying to catch a serial arsonist in southwest Houston, and right now they're pinning their hopes on some grainy security-cam footage. Fire Marshall Richard Galvan tells Hair Balls the investigation is a high pri ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 28, 2011

    Jessica Tata, Owner of Daycare Where Four Kids Died, Escapes to Nigeria

    ​The Houston Fire Department says the owner of the daycare where last week's heartbreaking fire killed four kids has escaped the country. Jessica Tata, 22, is in Nigeria, HFD tells the Houston Chronicle. Tata has been charged with reckless injury to a child involving serious bodily injury, b ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 24, 2011

    Parents' Nightmare: Three Kids Die in Daycare Fire

    Parents' nightmare on the west side​Horrible story out on the west side of town -- three children, aged three or younger, have died and another four are hospitalized with serious injuries, the Houston Fire Department and news outlets report. The fire, at Jackie's Child Care in the 2800 block ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 2, 2011

    HFD: 30 Elevator Rescues Today Because of Rolling Blackouts

    The Houston Fire Department reports that it had 30 elevator rescues today because of the rolling blackouts. Normally HFD would handle two or three a day, spokeswoman Alicia Whitehead says. The first call came at 4:30 a.m., and most of the action was between 7 and 10 a.m. We're sure they all looke ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 24, 2011

    HFD Hit Yet Again With Harassment Complaint, This Time by a Hispanic Firefighter

    Another companit against the Houston Fire Department​Just a week after the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission sided with a Houston firefighter's charges she was harassed, HFD was hit with another embarrassing allegation of firehouse misconduct. In a press conference today, a Hisp ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 5, 2010

    Whole Foods On Kirby (Somewhat) Ablaze (Update: It's Out)

    Smoky but contained​The Whole Foods on Kirby is on fire, according to witnesses and Twitter photos (that can't be accessed because everyone's trying to see them).The Houston Fire Department reports 11 units on the scene of "a building fire." At this point it's a one-alarm fire, which sounds like i ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 5, 2010

    Exclusive Photos from the Great Pumpkin Fire at Whole Foods

    ​All is well at the Whole Foods at 2955 Kirby, and the store plans to reopen to the public at 5 p.m., but many pumpkins perished in the blaze that erupted around 2 p.m. today when a seasonal display at the store's entrance caught fire. The Houston Fire Department responded quickly and no one ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 23, 2010

    Another Lawsuit Alleging Racism In The Houston Fire Department

    HFD: Another racism lawsuit, although this time the plaintiff is representing himself​A noose found hanging in a locker. The word "Nigger" spelled in graffiti on an African-American woman's dressing quarters. Sadly, the Houston Fire Department has for years been plagued with acts and allegations o ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 17, 2010

    HFD Announces It Doesn't Know Much Yet About Election-Machines Fire

    HFD still trying to come up with answers​Wondering what's going on with the investigation into the warehouse fire on August 27 that destroyed more than $30 million of Harris County's voting equipment?Well, lucky for you the Houston Fire Department threw a little media soiree Thursday afternoon to ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 8, 2010

    Three Firefighters Fired Over Racially Insensitive Comments (Updated With HFD Response)

    Another in a series of racial problems for HFD​Three Houston firefighters have been "indefinitely suspended" over racially insensitive comments made on a patient's record, a firefighters union said today. Jeff Caynon, president of the Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association, said his group ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 10, 2010

    Jane Draycott, Alleged HFD Harassment Victim: Still No Word About Shoplifting Charge

    Jane Draycott: Don't forget the ice!​Jane Draycott, one of two women suing the Houston Fire Department over alleged sexual harassment, has discovered a spectacular way to sabotage her case: She's been arrested for trying to shoplift $300 in merchandise from a Walmart.Report indicate that Draycott ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 3, 2010

    Unidentified Female, Bayou Body Count No. 132

    Body in a burned-out car​The body of a woman was found in the backseat of a burned-out car on the far west side early Tuesday morning.The Houston Fire Department was called out for a vehicle fire about 2 a.m. Tuesday at the Mansions of Shadowbriar Apartments in the 12100 block of Overbrook Lane."O ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 19, 2010

    Smallish YMCA Fire Brings Big HFD Response

    Photos by Chris VogelA lot of trucks responded for a smallish fire​As more than 30 fire trucks and 100 firefighters clogged up Downtown's Louisiana Street in front of the YMCA building this afternoon in response to a three-alarm fire, residents who had evacuated couldn't help but acknowledge the i ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 15, 2010

    No Pho-king Way: Bye-Bye Mai's, At Least For Now

    Update: The official HFD release says "Houston Fire Department arson investigators have ruled the cause of a fire at Mai's Restaurant on Milam due to a cooking fire (wok)." Photos by Craig Hlavaty​Firefighters continue to battle the blaze at Mai's, and reports are grim. (In terms of property, at ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 19, 2010

    It's Back To The Local Station For The Fire Chief

    ​The announcement came earlier today that the chief of the Houston Fire Department, Phil Boriskie, is resigning his post because of "my desire to return to the station and continue to serve in this great Department," according to his written statement. Boriskie's sudden desire to return to the sta ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 16, 2009

    Houston Female Firefighters Get In On The Calendar Act

    ​For years, the studs of the Houston Fire Department have been selling charity calendars to gay men all over the city. Possibly some women buy them, too.Now -- to top off a year when female firefighters have alleged harassment and abuse by colleagues and lack of support from supervisors -- the wom ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 24, 2009

    A Cool, Calm Discussion Of Possible Racism In The Fire Department

     You know what the Houston Fire Department racism mess needed? Some more stirring of the pot.Luckily, we have city councilwoman Jolanda Jones, who is a Sheila Jackson Lee in training when it comes to publicity, and Jeff Caynon, head of one of the local firefighters' unions, who also knows how t ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 7, 2009

    Houston Fire Department Battles Another Racism Allegation, Assuming You Think Graffiti Saying "Die Nigger" Is Racist

    The Houston Police Department began a full-scale hate-crime investigation this morning after a pair of women firefighters discovered racist and sexist graffiti scribbled all over the locker doors in the women's dressing quarters at Station 54 at Bush Intercontinental Airport. Houston Fire Depa ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 23, 2009

    Black Firefighters Protest Lack Of Action On A Noose In A Locker

    Photo by Paul KnightA senior captain in the Houston Fire Department kept a noose hanging in his locker, and according to the Houston Black Firefighters Association, the fire department, city council and mayor haven't taken the incident seriously. "They basically gave him a slap on the wrist," firefi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 30, 2009

    Spectacular Firetruck Crash Makes Huge Hassle In Montrose

    Photo by Justine Schmider Firefighters and at least one civilian were injured in a nasty crash at about 11 o'clock this morning at Westheimer and Dunlavy in the heart of Montrose.The two fire trucks collided while responding to an emergency call, flipping the ladder truck onto a white Infinity, a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 17, 2008

    In The Re-Match, Second Baptist Again Kicks Lakewood's Ass

    The battle of the mega-churches is under way as hurricane-relief efforts continue, and it looks like Second Baptist has pulled out to a healthy lead over Lakewood. In fact, if you had bet on Second Baptist, you probably wouldn’t even need to worry about the spread. As of 1 p.m. today, volunteer ... More >>

  • News

    January 24, 2002

    Fire Away

    Plus: Labor Pains, Taking the Rains

  • News

    January 10, 2002

    Riding Short

    Houston firefighters say the city has been playing Russian roulette by carrying crews of three members instead of four on its trucks. Last October, Jay Paul Jahnke anted up with his life.

  • News

    September 7, 2000

    Letters 09-07-2000

    Burned by City Hall, Leon and Joe, Muzzle This Mirth

  • News

    August 17, 2000

    On The Hot Seat

    Lester Tyra's short reign as chief of the Houston Fire Department has been filled with controversy. Can he quench the flames fast enough to save his job?

  • News

    January 6, 1994
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