The David Crockett Steam Fire Company recently hosted its 24th Auto Extrication Rescue Class.

One of the oldest fire stations on the West Bank, the David Crockett Steam Fire Company No. 1 got its start when 27 men of the village of Mechanickham organized to protect their families and homes from the ravages of fire.

Firefighters and EMS personnel throughout the region attended the class to learn the proper techniques to extricate victims trapped in vehicles involved in accidents.

“We had over 70 individuals as far away as Carriere, Miss. to attend the one-day class,” Captain Michael Hinkel said.

“The class consisted of basic educational techniques and presentations, hybrid vehicles, electrically vehicles, airbag placement and crumple zones, (also called crush space),” said Captain Hinkel, who took over as coordinator of the class when Captain Daniel Dauterive Sr. retired after 22 years at the station.

Throughout the day, firefighters and EMS personnel received hands-on experience focused on managing heavy vehicles involved in accidents with passenger cars.

The New Technology section looks at safety features of new vehicles. Topics discussed include batteries and battery locations, pressurized strut hinge units, exotic metals, fiberglass, plastic and other new vehicle construction body materials, deployable rollbars, seatbelt pretensioners, rear-hinged door challenges and plastic fuel tanks.

Emergency procedures for hybrid vehicles discussed the new gasoline electric hybrid vehicles and what to do with them at an emergency scene.

Among the most advanced training the group received was the “cracking the egg” technique. This technique is to remove vehicle occupants from a high-energy rollover.

Each participant received a certificate for participating in the class.

WCA sponsor run-off forum

The Woodmere Civic Association will sponsor a run-off forum Thursday, Nov. 20 at 7 p.m. at Faith is the Victory Christian Center, 3145 Alex Kornman Blvd., Harvey.

The candidates in this run-off forum are Thomas Anzelmo and Danyelle Taylor, District Judge 24th Judicial Dist. Court Div. O; Rickeem Jackson and the Rev. Ricky Johnson, School Board District 2; and Wayne Nocito and “Tony” Thomassie, Constable, 2nd Justice Court.

Veteran Recognitions

West Jefferson Medical Center honored several people on Veterans Day in a moment of remembrance and gratitude on Veterans Day 2014. Each was presented with a small token of appreciation at West Jefferson Medical Center.

Cheryl Lipovsky is the mother of U.S. Army Sergeant Frank Lipovsky who is stationed in Virginia after two tours of duty in Afghanistan. She was recognized in honor of her son’s service.

Her co-worker, retired U.S. Navy Chief Petty Officer Gerald “Woody” Woodhead, was also honored. Woodhead, a career military man, served 24 years in the Navy and is a veteran of several wars and operations including Vietnam, Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm and Bosnia. Woodhead also served in military installations across America including operations following aircraft carriers.

Philip Olivier, of Marrero, was also honored. He is a World War II veteran. He was joined by his son-in-law, R. J. Weng, of Westminster, Colorado, a U.S. Army veteran who served in Okinawa during the Vietnam era. Olivier served with the 4th Brigade Engineer Boat and Shore Regiment, 2nd Battalion of Company B. Olivier’s brother-in-law, Simon Merville Landry, of Belle Chasse, a U.S. Merchant Marine (Liberty Ships) veteran, also attended.

Yetoria Lumpkin DeShazier writes about the people and events in Algiers and the West Bank. Contact her at or call (504) 367-0905.