Meta Awareness

  Developing and maintaining situational awareness at an emergency scene can be a very challenging task. Scenes are often stressful, complex, time-compressed, and complicated with rapidly-changing conditions. Responders have lots of information to process and many tasks to perform. And, sadly, situational awareness isn’t always the forefront on their minds. Under such conditions, meta awareness […]

Situational Awareness Begins With Knowing Your Equipment

I received an email from a firefighter who was frustrated, disappointed, and angry. He came to work for his shift and, as he always does, started his day by performing a safety check of his personal gear and his self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA). When he opened the cabinet door on the apparatus he could hardly […]

Explanations for Situational Awareness Insanity – Part 5

This is going to be, admittedly, an uncomfortable read for some. But, nonetheless it is a conversation we need to have. I need to discuss the “F” word. No, not THAT “F” word. The “F” word that is more dreaded than the F-bomb – Fear. Many first responders enjoy discussing fear as much as they […]

Explanations for Situational Awareness Insanity – Part 2

In this segment, we continue our discussion about the seemingly insane things that firefighters do at structure fires. I use the word insane not because the firefighters suffer from a mental affliction. Rather, I use the word insane because we keep doing the same things over and over again while expecting different results.  [tweet this] […]

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 […]

Situational Awareness Starts with the Size-Up

During my fireground situational awareness classes we talk about the process for making high-stress, high consequence decisions. The first step in this process is performing a rapid size up. When I ask participants how long they take to size up a single-family residential dwelling fire with no exposures, the answer I get ranges from 10 […]

Mobile Data Computers and Situational Awareness

I am seeing an increase in the use of mobile data computers as a tool used by incident commanders. Commanders are using computers to capture and manage information, aid in decision making and in some cases as a tool in the development of situational awareness . On the surface, it would appear that situational awareness […]

Mobile Data Computers and Situational Awareness

I am seeing an increase in the use of mobile data computers as a tool used by incident commanders. Commanders are using computers to capture and manage information, aid in decision making and in some cases as a tool in the development of situational awareness . On the surface, it would appear that situational awareness […]

Situational Readiness of the Personal Variety

This contribution comes to Situational Awareness Matters by way of a great LinkedIn connection I made recently with Tim Greene, CEO of EMS Options LLC. I found out about Tim and his mission while surfing his bio on LinkedIn. (Yes, I am among the few who actually read about the people I get connected with […]

Twelve Ways to Situational Awareness

Ho, Ho, Ho. Merry Christmas everyone! With Thanksgiving a day in the past, it is officially the Christmas season! I know everyone’s feeling particularly festive this time of year and I have caught the Christmas spirit in a very situational awareness sort of way. Surely you’ve heard of the “Twelve Days of Christmas.” -You know […]

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