Ocean City Fire Chief James Smith takes the oath of office Friday given by Mayor Jay Gillian. His wife Kate holds the bible with their children Ashley, Brendan and Sarah and family members Thomas O’Malley and Shawn O’Malley in attendance. By Maddy VitaleLifelong firefighter James P. Smith, who has been at the helm of the Ocean City Fire Department since 2016, was officially sworn-in Friday night to the top post, becoming the 18th fire chief in 125 years of fire service in Ocean City.The ceremony was held at the Ocean City Tabernacle. Members of each rank, deputy chief, captain and firefighter, were also sworn in.Reverend John Jamieson, chaplain for the fire department, performed the invocation.Mayor Jay Gillian gave remarks and swore in Smith.“Jim Smith will be a great fire chief,” Gillian said. “He brings energy and enthusiasm to the job.”Then the mayor told the audience that firefighters perform the bravest acts and they do so as second nature because they are true public servants.Captain John Quigley Jr. and his wife Kim are all smiles with Luke, 3, at the swearing-in ceremony.Smith thanked the mayor for the opportunity to serve the community. At the end of the ceremony the chief thanked everyone who came out, especially his fellow firefighters.“I’m trying to rekindle it,” Smith said of morale. “It might not have been here as much as it should have been.”Smith’s wife Kate said after the ceremony that she was so happy to see her husband officially named chief.“I have seen him rise up in the ranks from firefighter to chief,” she remarked. “It is great. We are so proud of him.”The chief’s children Ashley, 28, Brendan, 10, and Sarah, 7, attended the ceremony.Smith chief comes from a family of firefighters. His father James Smith, served with the Philadelphia Fire Department for 41 years and rose to the rank of deputy fire chief.Smith’s parents were out of town and could not attend. But his uncle, Tom O’Malley, a captain in the Philadelphia Fire Department, pinned the badge on during the ceremony. O’Malley’s son Shawn, also a Philadelphia firefighter, also took the stage to show support for his cousin.Smith, 48, is in his 25th year of service at the Ocean City Fire Department. He was appointed acting fire chief in November 2016. City Council officially approved Gillian’s appointment of him in December 2017.In addition to fire service, Ocean City Beach Patrol Chief Mark Jamieson and Beach Patrol Captain Brian Booth were sworn in to their posts Friday night.Smith performed the swearing-in and the pinning of the badges for fire personnel and the beach patrol.Ocean City Beach Patrol Chief Mark Jamieson is given the oath of office by Fire Chief Smith with his parents Reverend John Jamieson and Marilyn by his side.Jamieson became head of beach patrol last year. The lifelong Ocean City resident and beach patrol member since 1998, said after the ceremony that he is ready for another year working with his crew of 186 to keep beachgoers safe.His father, Reverend Jamieson and mother Marilyn, stood with him while he was sworn in.And 51-year veteran of the beach patrol, Thomas Mullineaux received some recognition for his service as well as an oar, a very long memento for his lengthy years of service.Gillian presented Mullineaux with the gift, which was met by some chuckles in the audience. Then the mayor thanked him for “51 summers of continued service” to the Ocean City Beach Patrol.Mullineaux joked, “I thought I’d do it for four years in college and one thing led to another and 51 years later, what can I say.”Thomas Mullineaux , a 51-year veteran of the beach patrol, receives a gift of an oar from Mayor Jay Gillian and Fire Chief James Smith.The swearing-in ceremony also included the following members of the Ocean City Department of Fire and Rescue Services:Deputy ChiefsStephen CostantinoVito DiMarcoCaptainsPatrick FlynnBernard WalkerChristopher VlietRaymond ClarkJohn QuigleyPaul BlankleyRichard BickmoreFirefightersSean KrugerRyan StammEric MastersWilliam LombardWilliam Tomlinson
Though the number of transfusion-transmitted WNV cases has decreased dramatically since testing began, a report in the Feb 2 Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report detailed the cases of two South Dakota patients whose disease probably came from a single infected donor whose screening tests were negative at the time of donation. The CDC said the cases underscore the importance of clinical recognition, effective WNV blood screening strategies, and investigation coordination. The Procleix TIGRIS system, developed by Gen-Probe, Inc., San Diego, and marketed by Chiron Corp., Emeryville, Calif., was approved by the FDA on Mar 2 and uses Gen-Probe’s Procleix WNV assay, which is already being used in the company’s semiautomated screening system, Gen-Probe said in a March 2 press release. Mar 9, 2007 (CIDRAP News) The first fully automated test to screen donors of blood, tissue, and organs for West Nile virus (WNV) was recently approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The automated system allows blood centers to process 1,000 individual blood samples in about 14 hours, Gen-Probe said. Blood testing sites typically use pooled samples to screen for WNV, then switch to individual donor testing once predetermined WNV prevalence triggers are met, the company said. “This is the latest step forward in what has been a very successful industry-government effort to keep blood safe from the emerging threat of West Nile virus,” he said in the press release. Mar 2 Gen-Probe press release WNV was first detected in the United States in 1999 and has since become endemic. For the 2006 season, 4,256 cases of West Nile virus have so far been reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC); 1,449 cases involved West Nile encephalitis or meningitis, and 165 were fatal. People usually catch WNV from the bite of a mosquito that has picked up the pathogen from an infected bird or animal. Most people experience no symptoms or only mild illness, but the virus can cause serious infections of the brain and nervous system. Mar 2 FDA press release Development of a WNV blood test began in 2002 when researchers discovered that the virus could be transmitted in blood, and nationwide screening for the virus began in 2003. Testing detected about 1,400 potentially infectious blood donations from 2003 to 2005, according to the CDC. Feb 2 MMWR article on South Dakota caseshttp://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5604a4.htm CDC 2006 West Nile virus figures See also: The advantages of a fully automated system are that it can reduce the potential for human error, speed up donor screening, and enhance the safety of blood and tissue products, said Jesse Goodman, MD, director of FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, in a March 2 FDA press release.