Hartford deputy fire chief suspended without pay for second time in a year

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HARTFORD–A Hartford fire deputy chief has been put on unpaid leave after putting firefighters at risk.

Deputy Chief James McLoughlin will be on a 15-day unpaid suspension after he jeopardized the health and safety of firefighters at a fire earlier this year.

According to Scott Brady, the interim assistant fire chief, McLoughlin didn’t talk with an assistant chief on the day of the fire, but instead spoke to a fellow deputy chief, causing a miscommunication and ultimately jeopardizing the health and safety of the firefighters working to put out the fire.

Brady said there was no indication that McLoughlin disobeyed an order, but he said he “didn’t follow department procedure and practice in analyzing the scene and addressing all safety concerns.”

For our full coverage of the issues plaguing the Hartford Fire Department over the past year, click here.

McLoughlin was previously placed on leave on December 17, 2014. At the time, Mayor Pedro Segarra and Hartford Fire Chief Huertas both refused to comment on the matter.

He was the sixth firefighter placed on leave within one month after a string of incidents, including physical altercations, DUI arrests and an accidental shooting.

McLoughlin was the incident commander on duty the night that Hartford firefighter Kevin Bell died battling a Blue Hills Avenue blaze.