Author Archives: Rich Gasaway

About Rich Gasaway

Richard B. Gasaway served 33 years on the front lines as a firefighter, EMT-Paramedic and fire chief. He earned his Doctor of Philosophy degree while studying how individuals, teams and organizations develop and maintain situational awareness and make decisions in high stress, high consequence, time compressed environments. Dr. Gasaway is widely considered to be one of the nation's leading authorities on first responder situational awareness and decision making. His material has been featured and referenced in more than 400 book chapters, research projects, journal articles, podcasts, webinars and videos. His research and passion to improve workplace safety through improved situational awareness is unrivaled. Dr. Gasaway's leadership and safety programs have been presented to more than 42,000 first responders, emergency managers, medical providers, military personnel, aviation employees, industrial workers and business leaders throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Australia.

Episode 24: A situational awareness driving lesson.

Available on iTunes and Stitcher Radio! (Click the icon below or search SAMatters Radio)       __________________________________________________________________ On this episode, I interview Firefighter Richard Marcus of the New Hartford Volunteer Fire Department in Connecticut. On May 5, 2006, Firefighter … Continue reading

Posted in Attention Management, Close Call Survivor, Communications, Decision Making, Equipment, firefighter situational awareness, Multitasking, Safety, Situational awareness, Standard Operating Procedures/Guidelines, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Situational Awareness and Decision Making Tips for Training

I recently received an email from a SAMatters community member asking for tips to improve size-up, situational awareness and decision making while training in a flashover simulator. It was a great question (thank you Captain Scott Byers from the Tracy … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Attention Management, Decision Making, Distractions and Interruptions, Emotions, Fatigue, firefighter situational awareness, Human Behavior, Information overload, Intuition, Multitasking, Questions & Answers, Risk Assessment, Safety, Simulation, size-up, Teamwork, Technology, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Episode 23: Situational Awareness lessons learned when three feet from death – Part 2

Available on iTunes and Stitcher Radio! (Click the icon below or search SAMatters Radio)       __________________________________________________________________ On this episode I continue the interview with Captain John Lightly. John as served as a member of the Youngstown, Ohio Fire … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Auditory exclusion, building construction, Close Call Survivor, Communications, Crew Resource Management, Culture, Decision Making, Emotions, firefighter situational awareness, Human Behavior, Intuition, Personal protective equipment, Risk Assessment, Safety, Situational awareness, size-up, Staffing, Standard Operating Procedures/Guidelines, Tacit knowledge, Teamwork, Training, Tunneled Senses | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Situational Awareness Keyword Search

Here’s a cool new way to search for situational awareness articles. Click on any keyword in the word cloud below and you will be directed to a list of articles related to that topic.    

Posted in firefighter situational awareness, Safety, Situational awareness | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Episode 22: Situational Awareness Lessons Learned when Three Feet From Death – Part 1

Available on iTunes and Stitcher Radio! (Click the icon below or search SAMatters Radio)       __________________________________________________________________ On this episode (Part 1 of 2) I interview with Captain John Lightly. John as served as a member of the Youngstown, … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Auditory exclusion, building construction, Close Call Survivor, Communications, Complacency, Crew Resource Management, Culture, Decision Making, Emotions, firefighter situational awareness, Human Behavior, Intuition, Personal protective equipment, Risk Assessment, Safety, Situational awareness, size-up, Staffing, Standard Operating Procedures/Guidelines, Tacit knowledge, Teamwork, Training, Tunneled Senses | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Physical condition assessments improve situational awareness

One of the primary purposes of a Personnel Accountability Report (PAR) is to ensure that the incident commander and safety officer knows where crews are and that all members are accounted for. In the event of a rapid change in … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Checklists, Crew Resource Management, Decision Making, Fatigue, firefighter situational awareness, human factors, PAR, Physical Fitness, Safety, Stress, Technology, Weather conditions | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Episode 21: Situational awareness lessons shared by a first responder struck by a car

  Available on iTunes and Stitcher Radio! (Click the icon below or search SAMatters Radio)       __________________________________________________________________ On this episode I interview Sean Balantic. After serving 6 years active duty as a United States Marine, Sean served as … Continue reading

Posted in Close Call Survivor, Competency, Decision Making, Emotions, firefighter situational awareness, human factors, Personal protective equipment, Risk Assessment, Safety, Situational awareness, size-up, Stress, Training, Tunneled Senses | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Expectations and situational awareness

The ability to develop and maintain situational awareness is a far more complex process than most people realize. I’ve had many responders say to me that as long as they are “paying attention” or “keeping their head on a swivel” … Continue reading

Posted in Decision Making, firefighter situational awareness, Mental Models, Meta Awareness, Risk Assessment, Safety, Situational awareness, Situational Readiness, size-up | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Episode 20: Mayday for Mental Health

  Available on iTunes and Stitcher Radio! (Click the icon below or search SAMatters Radio)       __________________________________________________________________ This episode chronicles a father’s story of inspiration from tragedy. Listen in as I interview Fire Chief Patrick Kenny from the … Continue reading

Posted in Attention Management, Communications, Culture, Decision Making, Emotions, Fear, firefighter situational awareness, Human Behavior, Leadership, Mayday and RIT, Safety, Situational awareness, Standard Operating Procedures/Guidelines, Stress | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Teaching situational awareness and decision making

Situational awareness is the foundation for good decision making. Situational awareness is formed by observing… and understanding what is happening in your environment, in the context of how time is passing. That “understanding” is then used to make predictions of … Continue reading

Posted in Communications, Crew Resource Management, Culture, Decision Making, Leadership, Meta Awareness, Risk Assessment, Safety, Situational awareness, size-up, Teamwork, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment