Fatigue Impacts Situational Awareness

Research has shown that fatigue can impact situational awareness in disturbing ways. [tweet this] Some responders think if they take a “safety nap” it will help. In a small way, it may, as any rest is better than no rest. However, a nap does not resolve systemic fatigue. Rest is a critical component to brain function and […]

Episode 16: The impact of fatigue on situational awareness

  Available on iTunes and Stitcher Radio! (Click the icon below or search SAMatters Radio)       __________________________________________________________________ Episode 16: The impact of fatigue on situational awareness Length: 20 minutes Back in episode 7 I answered a listener question about the impact of fatigue on situational awareness. I promised in that episode that I […]

Tired Brains (fatigue) and Situational Awareness

I get asked often about the role of fatigue in situational awareness. Sometimes the question is based on general curiosity. Sometimes the inquiry is a result of someone seeking support for (or against) an extended work schedule. I sure don’t want to get caught in the middle of that debate but the question is a […]

Big Data Could Spell Big Trouble

There is a lot being written these days about how “big data” can help emergency scene commanders improve situational awareness and, subsequently, make better decisions. While information (data) is critical to the formation of situational awareness, it is very easy for a commander to become overwhelmed with data. I say this often during my Mental […]

Situational Awareness on the Roadway

There have been several recent incidents where responders have been struck by vehicles while working on roadway incidents. The roadway is one of the more dangerous work environments we operate in because conditions can go from being totally benign to total chaos in just a matter of seconds.  

Seven ways frustration can impact situational awareness

Anyone who’s been frustrated knows it can consume a lot of your mental energy and thinking space. This can significantly impact your situational awareness. In fact, depending on the level of frustration, your brain can be hijacked by  all-consuming thoughts about what is causing the angst. While operating at an emergency scene, frustration may draw […]

Radio Show

Available on iTunes and Stitcher Radio! (Click the icon below or search SAMatters Radio)       __________________________________________________________________ Episode 157 This episode is part seven of a nine-part serious on dangerous mindsets that first responders can develop and I offer some advice for dealing with each. This week we talk about the super hero mindset. […]

Episode 31: Out of air! A Close Call Survivor Story

        On Wednesday, February 18, 2009, Elyria Fire Captain Joe Pronesti experienced a close call when he responded to a fire alarm activation call on a college campus. The first arriving engine reported heavy smoke coming from multiple buildings. In search of the source of the smoke, crews would learn the fire was […]

Three types of stress

In this article we discuss three types of stress: Acute stress, episodic acute stress and chronic stress. First responders can, and often do, experience all three. Stress can impact firefighter situational awareness and, equally concerning, stress can have devastating long-term impacts.

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