Research has demonstrated that, without question, stress can have significant impacts on situational awareness (SA). Stress can narrow your attention, cause task fixation, contribute to heightened awareness of non-critical information (at the detriment of more critical information) and so much more. As stress erodes situational awareness, it can also impact decision making. The research I […]
Throughout the fire service there are departments whose staffing has been reduced as a result of budget cuts. That is not going to come as a shock to most readers. What has been shocking for me, however, has been the response to my question of what fire department leaders are doing to ensure the situational […]
The process of developing situational awareness starts with capturing information using the five senses. Then, the information must be understood. And finally, once the information is understood, a prediction is made about future outcomes. This process can be challenged when staffing is unpredictable.
Understaffing can have a big impact on first responder safety. We all know that. But it can also have a huge impact on first responder situational awareness. More than I ever imagined. I have experienced understaffing issues many times throughout my career but I never gave much thought to how my situational awareness was being […]
During a recent Flawed Situational awareness program, I engaged the class in a discussion of what the actions of the first-in officer should be once the decision is made to be offensive/interior. The choices were: a.) Make entry with the crew; b.) Establish a fixed command position outside and send the crew in without the […]
I have many opportunities to talk with first responders about the importance of having Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) or Standard Operating Guidelines (SOGs). These documents are essential to the safety of responders because they set the standard for training and for incident operations.
The research I have conducted on the neuroscience of situational awareness and high-risk decision making has been fascinating and extremely enlightening to me. Over the past 9 years, it has been very rewarding to take the lessons of research and apply them for the benefit of first responders. For those who have attended one of […]
During SAMatters Tour events there are lots of discussion happening among attendees and some great questions being asked. This episode addresses some of the questions fielded during live events. Length: 27 minutes http://traffic.libsyn.com/samatters/SAM20063207C20SA20Q26A20Session.mp3 _____________________________________________________ If you are interested in taking your understanding of situational awareness and high-risk decision […]
This is going to be an uncomfortable conversation as we talk about assessing your team to identify your weak links – the members who are not adequately trained, prepared or fit to perform the duties of a firefighter. During my SA programs we talk about the need to complete a situational awareness “size-up” of the […]