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New York City Fire Department

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The New York City Fire Department (FDNY) has the responsibility of protecting citizens and property in New York City's five boroughs from fires and fire hazards, as well as first response to biological, chemical and radioactive hazards. FDNY (pronounced Fid-knee) is the largest Municipal Fire Department in the US with 11,000 personnel and faces an extraordinarily varied challenge. In addition to responding to building types that range from wood frame to high-rise, there are the many bridges and tunnels needed to move a large commuter population into and out of the city as well as the largest subway system in the US. These challenges add yet another level of firefighting complexity. Old wiring in subway tunnels (as well as in older buildings) is occasionally the cause of fires. A scarcity of water for drinking and fighting fires ultimately resulted in the transition of Brooklyn from separate city into NYC borough. The city, by then had developed a vast up-state feeder system to slake the growing city's thirst.

The FDNY ideology of aggressive fire attack grew naturally out of the building and population density that characterize the city. It was this time honored approach that led to the death of 343 FDNY members who rushed into the World Trade Center Towers following the terrorist piloted plane crashes of September 11, 2001 attacks.

In addition to firefighting, rescue and HAZMAT, FDNY stations ambulances throughout the city and supplies paramedics and EMTs. These complement ambulances provided by the hospitals and private services and help reduce emergency response times.

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