Firefighter Suspended After Breaking Protocol by Saving an Elderly Woman


Onika Wallace, Contributor

On June 27, 2019, a fire aroused in an elderly woman’s house at one in the morning. Firefighter Daniel Dwyer was one of the men on this call. He is the firefighter that is now suspended without pay for attempting to save the ninety five year old woman, Sallie Skrine.  The fire was caused by a kitchen burner that was left on by accident. Even though Skrine tried her hardest to escape, she had burglar bars on her windows, so she could not get through those. She had to across her house to get to a door, but because of all of the smoke in the air, she collapsed. She could no longer breathe. Dwyer broke the rules of protocol when he ran in on his own to save her. he found her lying on her dining room floor unconscious.

He picked her up and got her out to the front porch where he met other firefighters that helped him carry her down the front stairs. Due to Skrine’s conditions, she died a little after everything had died down. Many firefighters were very grateful for his heroism, but there were others who claim he endangered others when he ran into the house by himself. Those firefighters are absolutely correct because if he were to get hurt, there would have been more men running in there to help him. However, Dwyer’s conscience could not allow him to leave somebody in the house helpless. Dwyer not only did something heroic, but he did something that was reckless.

Until February nineteenth, Dwyer will be suspended without pay for his recklessness. Many firefighters are very upset this. “When the men and women in the station hear that fire captains are going to be punished for acts of valor, it just goes against in which anything a firefighter swears an oath to uphold,”  says the head of the union, Paul Gerdis. Gerdis is correct because when you enter any form of emergency services, you have to take an oath to help complete strangers as best as you can for as long as you can, or until they no longer need emergency services. Dwyer did exactly this, but in ways he is not allowed to do. He has do all of the steps he needs to do before he does something like this and as you can see he did not do those steps. according to The Washington Post, “But the local firefighters’ union, the Atlanta Professional Firefighters Local 134, slammed the decision, arguing that Dwyer’s actions that June night should receive only praise.” There has been a lot of conflict due to this suspension, but overall Dwyer did something he was not supposed to do and now he is suffering the consequences of his actions. “The disciplinary process for the Atlanta Fire Rescue Department is designed to encourage safety and order,” says Slater. “It also seeks to establish clear expectations in both emergency and non-emergency situations.” No matter what people say in the conflicts, he is officially on probation and there is nothing anyone can do anymore.