Episode 24: A situational awareness driving lesson.

Situational Awareness Matters Radio

Situational Awareness Matters Radio

Situational Awareness Matters     Situational Awareness Matters Radio

Situational Awareness Matters RadioOn this episode, I interview Firefighter Richard Marcus of the New Hartford Volunteer Fire Department in Connecticut. On May 5, 2006, Firefighter Marcus was in the officer’s seat of New Hartford Engine 1 responding to a report of a fire on the roadside. While in route, they were cancelled and a discussion in the cab caused the driver to become momentarily distracted. For the brief moment that he had his eyes off the roadway, the engine drifted of the right side of the road. While the driver attempted to correct and recover, the engine veered out of control and struck a tree on the officer’s side of the engine. Listen as Richard tells his close call survivor story.

Length: 61 minutes

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If you are interested in taking your understanding of situational awareness and high-risk decision making to a higher level, check out the Situational Awareness Matters Online Academy.
CLICK HERE for details, enrollment options and pricing.

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Click the “Continue Reading” link below to access the show notes.

Situational Awareness Matters RadioOn May 5, 2006, Firefighter Marcus was in the officer’s seat of New Hartford Engine 1 responding to a report of a fire on the roadside. While in route, they were cancelled and a discussion in the cab caused the driver to become momentarily distracted. For the brief moment that he had his eyes off the roadway, the engine drifted of the right side of the road. While the driver attempted to correct and recover, the engine veered out of control and struck a tree on the officer’s side of the engine. As a result, Firefighter Marcus suffered multiple injuries that included a spinal fracture and bilateral knee injuries. All firefighters riding in the engine were wearing seat belts. However the engine was older and was only equipped with lap belts, not shoulder belts.

Listen in as Firefighter Marcus shares this incredible story of how this incident impacted his life. Lessons learned include:

  • Situational Awareness Matters RadioThe adoption of commercial driver’s license (or Q-endorsements in Connecticut) for drivers.
  • The implementation of a sterile cockpit policy (adopted from the airline industry). This is a topic I speak about in the SAMatters Online Academy and during the live Fifty Ways to Kill a First Responder program. I will talk about this more in an upcoming podcast.
  • Changes the department made in vehicle safety following the incident.
  • The establishment of a driver’s training program with criteria to accomplishment.
  • Situational Awareness Matters RadioRichard shares how the accident changed how he was treated in his department.
  • The challenges Richard has seen in his efforts to get his department to develop SOGs and to implement best practices.

The mission of Situational Awareness Matters is simple: Help first responders see the bad things coming… in time to prevent bad outcomes.

Safety begins with SA! 


Share your comments on this article in the “Leave a Reply” box below. If you want to send me incident pictures, videos or have an idea you’d like me to research and write about, contact me. I really enjoy getting feedback and supportive messages from fellow first responders. It gives me the energy to work harder for you.

Thanks,

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