Firefighter Suspended After Trying To Save An Elderly Woman From A Burning House

Firefighter Suspended After Trying To Save An Elderly Woman From A Burning House

Captain Daniel Thomas Dwyer was suspended for four days without pay because he did not follow protocol. He entered by himself without waiting for backup.

Image Source: Facebook/City of Atlanta Fire Rescue Department

A firefighter's job description includes rescuing people from burning homes and quelling the flames. Now, one firefighter from Atlanta is facing suspension for doing just that. Captain Daniel Thomas Dwyer's attempt to rescue a woman from a burning building resulted in him being suspended, according to Fox 5 Atlanta.  While it is his job to save and rescue people, there is a certain protocol to be followed which Captain Dwyer did not. 


Dwyer's commander claims he carried out his mission in a manner that can only be deemed as unsafe. They say he needed to wait for additional firefighters to show up before starting his search for 95-year-old Sallie Skrine by himself. The incident took place last June. Sadly, Skrine succumbed to her injuries. According to 11 Alive, officials believe it was hard for them to get to her on time because of the "burglar bars" she'd installed. Dwyer somehow managed to get in, pulled her out of the front door and onto the porch before the other firefighters joined Dwyer to help carry her out of the house. 


Skrine's niece described her as a matriarch of her family and a pillar of the community. Skrine was someone who prepared meals with a full heart for neighbors and was involved in her church. She was affectionately known as Ms. Sally. "Every time she talked about helping people she would be very, very, passionate about it," she said.  


A "notice of final adverse action" complaint was prepared last week on Monday. Dwyer will be suspended without pay for four days and will return to work on Feb. 19. Dwyer's split-second decision to enter the home alone on June 27, 2019, was a breach of protocol.


"You entered the structure without your crew members which are in immediate conflict with no freelancing, accountability, and maintaining crew integrity," the document states. The suspension was signed by Atlanta Fire Chief Randall B. Slaughter. Dwyer is currently appealing the decision. In a statement, Slaughter said:  "The disciplinary process for the Atlanta Fire Rescue Department is designed to encourage safety and order."


"It also seeks to establish clear expectations in both emergency and non-emergency situations. At this time it would be inappropriate to publicly discuss individual disciplinary cases that have not been totally resolved. The City of Atlanta has a process in place where each employee is afforded the opportunity to appeal proposed adverse disciplinary actions with the Civil Service Review Board."


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