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Interim Ohio fire chief backed despite expired fire cert

Ohio Fire Chiefs’ Association official says the retired fire chief will be an excellent chief, no matter that his firefighting certification lapsed


By Bruce Geiselman
The Northeast Ohio Media Group

OLMSTED TOWNSHIP, Ohio -- Interim Fire Chief Peter Nelson has received support from a top official with the Ohio Fire Chiefs’ Association, despite the fact that he’s not a certified firefighter.

Nelson’s appointment as the township’s interim fire chief was criticized by some residents because since retiring four years ago, Nelson’s certification as a firefighter expired. The certification expired Feb. 5, according to the Ohio Department of Public Safety.

Due to the lack of certification, Nelson will not respond to fires and will be limited to administrative duties while the township seeks a permanent replacement for former Fire Chief John Rice, who was demoted to assistant chief. Rice was demoted following a lengthy disciplinary hearing in which township trustees sustained allegations against Rice, including not wearing personal protective gear to a fire and yelling at an apartment resident during a confrontation. Rice denied the allegations and said he acted in self defense.

Full story: Ohio Fire Chiefs’ Association official endorses Olmsted interim fire chief, despite lack of certification