Firefighting operations often include very high risk activities that can occur in any weather conditions, and at any time of day. Fire safety officers and line officers are responsible for assuming all risks and making the decisions for the entire fire department. Firefighting is inherently dangerous, but that does not mean that death or disabilities are acceptable or inevitable, these responsibilities tend to fall on every single member of the fire department to watch and advise about dangers that will affect them and/or other members of the firefighting crew.
Of all the daily decisions and responsibilities in the command of a fire department the number one concern of nearly every leader is safety. If a captain can figure out how to shave valuable seconds off of response time or find a better hose pattern, they call it a win. However, nothing matches their level of concern for the area of personnel accountability.
Posted by Feld Fire on 9/10/2014
Those of us on the fireground every day know all about change. A fire scene is not linear and predictable; it is dynamic and unpredictable, even from minute to minute. We have to be flexible and adaptable and be able to think quickly on our feet or lives could be lost.
Lift bags can be very important tools for fire rescue operations. If you are not familiar, lift bags are highly pressurized air bags that help lift patients or victims to safety.
This has been a pretty tough last few years for wildfires in the U.S., especially in the western states. Over the last five years in California, for example, firefighters have had to prepare for an average (average!) of more 3,000 wildfires every year - or about 250 every month, or about eight per day. Eight per day!
When celebrities like actors and athletes end up making the headlines negatively, people remember their names for some time to come. When people employed in the area of public safety are featured in the headlines negatively, the public doesn’t remember the individual, but instead, they remember the occupation and even the city associated with the story.
Firefighters must work and live with a variety of personalities. The long hours and often close proximity of living quarters, combined with sometimes stressful working conditions can often cause tension in coworker relationships. If you are able to exhibit tolerance, understanding and compassion, these same things that create tension can also create bonds between you and your co-workers.
Firefighters come in a remarkable range of shapes and sizes, which isn't surprising, as firefighters span the entire adult population. The days of building turnout gear that fits a "normal" range of firefighters are over. When your gear really fits your body, it's not just more comfortable; but it enables you to perform your job to the maximum of your ability. In spite of manufacturers meeting all the rigorous safety standards and requirements for fire fighting protective wear, many firefighters are still getting gear that doesn't fit well.
This year on September 11, the 9/11 Memorial Plaza will open at night to the general public for the first time on the anniversary of the attack. In the 13 years since the Al Qaeda terror organization headed by Osama bin Laden flew two 747 passenger jets into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in TRiBeCa, hundreds of volunteers and paid employees have reclaimed the crash site in honor of the 2,606 New York victims of the attacks, along with some 372 passengers on board the aircraft, 341 NYC firefighters, 62 police officers, and 10 paramedics and EMTs. The nation has seen an invitation-only memorial service televised every year on the date, and the reading aloud of all of the victims' names, including those who perished at The Pentagon and on Flight 93 in Pennsylvania.
Everyone on the fireground has likely operated a walkie-talkie system at some point in the past, but are you a fire department that considers communication the No.1 priority? If you do, then you probably shouldn't be reading this - because you already know that the mobile radio systems currently in use are not your father's walkie-talkies, and you know that training on these networks is every bit as vital as training in various fire situations.
A leader must understand when to stand up and say something and when to sit down and listen. Able to show displeasure or pleasure by the words and tone of voice in the actions of subordinates. You have to be able to speak your point without much ado. When seconds count, long winded discussions and instructions are killers. You have to make sure you are quick, to the point, and that your followers understand your objectives.