Tag Archives: decision making under stress

Twelve Ways to Situational Awareness

Ho, Ho, Ho. Merry Christmas everyone! 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.” … Continue reading

Posted in Communications, Complacency, Culture, Decision Making, Gasaway Consulting Group, human factors, Incompetence, Information overload, Safety, Situational awareness, Situational Readiness, size-up, Staffing, Stress, Teamwork, Training, Workload Management | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Culture And Situational Awareness

Each member of the fire department is guided by a unique system of values, beliefs, assumptions and norms. Every member also brings their own unique habits and routines. What happens when you combine the values, beliefs, assumptions, norms, habits and … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Communications, Complacency, Culture, Decision Making, Ego and Self-Esteem, Emotions, Fear, firefighter situational awareness, Human Behavior, Leadership, Safety, Situational awareness, Teamwork | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Mission Myopia: A situational awareness barrier

Every emergency scene operation should begin by determining the mission (sometimes called strategy) and setting task-level goals (sometimes called tactics). Strategy and tactics establish what is to be done and how it is to be done. For example, at a … Continue reading

Posted in Attention Management, Complacency, Crew Resource Management, Decision Making, firefighter situational awareness, human factors, Repetition, Risk Assessment, Safety, Simulation, Situational awareness, size-up, Stress, Tacit knowledge, Training, Tunneled Senses | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Expectations can Impact Situational Awareness

Towering Inferno… Backdraft… Ladder 49… Emergency… Adam 12… Dragnet… Rescue Me… Chicago Fire. Love them or hate them, movies and television influence perceptions and create expectations three ways: First, they influence citizen perceptions of emergency service providers and create certain … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Competency, Culture, Decision Making, Ego and Self-Esteem, Emotions, Fear, firefighter situational awareness, human factors, Safety, Situational awareness, Stress | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Confirmation Bias Impacts Situational Awareness

The foundation of situational awareness is capturing clues and cues in your environment – what some would call “paying attention” - and then making sense of those clues and cues – what some would call “understanding” – and then making projections … Continue reading

Posted in Crew Resource Management, Decision Making, firefighter situational awareness, human factors, Safety, Situational awareness, size-up | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Developing Situational Awareness in Novice Responders

One of the most frequent questions I get asked during the Mental Management of Emergencies and Fifty Ways to Kill a First Responder programs is: How can a novice responder develop expert knowledge when the number of fires are going … Continue reading

Posted in Competency, Decision Making, Emotions, firefighter situational awareness, Human Behavior, Neuroscience, Repetition, Safety, Simulation, Situational awareness, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Bravado: A Barrier to Situational Awareness

I recently sent out a message across my social media networks (Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn) about bravado being a barrier to situational awareness. The message, in case you missed it, read: Bravado: The purposeful ignorance of critical signs of danger … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Crew Resource Management, Culture, Decision Making, Ego and Self-Esteem, Emotions, Fear, firefighter situational awareness, Human Behavior, human factors, Safety, Situational awareness, Situational Readiness, Teamwork, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Using the simulation environment to improve situational awareness

Many first responder training programs use simulation in the development of decision making competencies. Simulation exercises help develop skills in setting strategy and tactics, in applying policies and procedures and in developing critical thinking skills. But how can simulations be … Continue reading

Posted in Communications, Crew Resource Management, Decision Making, Human Behavior, human factors, Information overload, Mental Models, Neuroscience, Safety, Simulation, Situational awareness, Stress, Technology, Training, Workload Management | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Firefighting: It’s a whole new ballgame

There is little doubt the recent recession has had a significant impact on the nation’s fire service. Hardly a day goes by where there’s not some news about an organization that had downsized, rightsized or capsized. There are all kinds … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Complacency, Crew Resource Management, Culture, Decision Making, Emotions, Fear, Human Behavior, Leadership, Mayday and RIT, Personnel location, Risk Assessment, Safety, Situational awareness, Situational Readiness, Staffing, Standard Operating Procedures/Guidelines, Stress, Teamwork, Training, Workload Management | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Ignoring the Signs of Danger

A lesson on situational awareness: The tones drop for a reported residential fire. On the way, dispatch reports multiple calls, confirming a working fire. On arrival the crew sees fire blowing out the B-C corner of the single story, detached … Continue reading

Posted in Accountability, Communications, Complacency, Crew Resource Management, Culture, Decision Making, Fear, firefighter situational awareness, Human Behavior, Safety, Situational awareness, size-up, Teamwork, Tunneled Senses | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments