This 10 part series will take inspiration from Sacramento Metro Fire Battalion Chief Anthony Kastros' teaching of his "10 Commandments of Command" and applies those principles to complex emergency situations beyond that of a structure fire. Each of Kastros' commandments are adapted to present an emergency where both police and fire must engage in activity at the same time, in the same place. Credit

Lightsflicker, exposing the paint peeling from the wall. Rust permeates the side of the cast iron sink from years of a steady drip. The stench of an un-mopped floor rises as Justin enters a stall, slides the lock with an unsteady hand, sets his backpack on the floor, and pulls out a sock filled with supplies and carefully peels apart a new syringe.

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A student athlete only a year ago, Justin can't bare to look at himself: seeing what he has become. As a star linebacker, he had his sights on the NFL draft in two years when a player rolled up on his right leg: both tibia and fibula severely fractured. He toughed through the pain at first but eventually succumbed to the many offers for narcotic pain medication. The descent was quick from that moment on. Periodic relief from the Oxycontin led to a visceral need to continue that euphoric feeling. Heroin was the next logistical step. Classes were skipped, friendships lost, and Justin has now devoted every day for the last two months pursuing his addiction.


It has been three days since he last shot up. Justin feels the vicious withdrawals coming on. "I can double the dose this once since it has been so long" he reasons. Justin ties the tourniquet, finds a battered vein and injects everything he has. Before he can finish depressing the plunger, Justin drifts off - the soothing wave drifting over him. ...[Continue reading on Medium]