Failed FDNY Fire Commissioner Finally Stepping Down - October 10, 2009

Nicholas Scoppetta will receive praise from many corners as he leaves the FDNY at years end but firefighters won't be among those heaping praise. Scoppetta has announced he is leaving and many think it should have come long before now.

One of the worst examples of his poor leadership was the aftermath of The Duetsche Bank Fire when two firefighters perished. Instead of the Fire Commissioner stepping up and taking responsibility for the failure at his level he allowed firefighters to take the hit and several were reassigned.

Another, more recent failure, is the smoke and mirrors response times. Under Scoppetta the department began a practice of sending units toward an emergency prior to having information in the system that fire department dispatchers could pass on to responders. This practice reduced response times by 13-17 seconds but did so by limiting protection for firefighters and residents.

Good riddance.