Search Results for: Overwhelmed

Tracking of Personnel

Accountability: A critically important component of emergency scene safety when personnel operates in a hazardous environment. From the perspective of situational awareness, accountability plays several roles. The obvious role is personnel accountability facilitates the rapid deployment of rescue teams if something goes awry. Command knows the crew sizes and where they are operating and can …

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Unexpected Information Can Be a Barrier to Situational Awareness

One of the foundations of situational awareness development is being able to make accurate predictions of future events. Making (accurate) predictions is a fairly complex neurological process that relies heavily on gathering information, comprehending the meaning of the information, tapping into your stored knowledge of past experiences, trusting your intuition and using your imagination to …

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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 …

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Task Saturation Impacts Situational Awareness

There’s no doubt that in dynamically changing, high-risk, high-consequence environments someone could be called upon to perform many varied tasks, some at the same time. When staffing levels are low, the likelihood of this situation increases significantly. The problem this creates is the brain does not perform well when task saturated, especially in stressful situations. …

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Overstaffing

It’s not something talked about often in situational awareness circles – over staffing. Far more often the focus is on issues of under staffing which, coincidentally, can be a significant barrier to situational awareness and can have a catastrophic impact on safety. There can be, on occasion, scenarios where an incident scene ends up having …

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Information Overload!

Understanding Stress – Part 7: Information Overload

Welcome to Part 7 of my series on stress and its impact on situational awareness. I appreciate all the very nice comments I have received by email, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Keep them coming. Your messages inspire and motivate me more than you can ever imagine. Thank you so much! In the previous segment I …

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Understanding Stress – Part 4: Hyper Vigilance

Welcome to part four of the series on understanding stress. In the first three segments I talked about the various kinds of stress people in high risk jobs can experience. For seasoned veterans, the information shared likely served as a good review. For newer members, it may have alerted you to the stressors that may …

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Situational Awareness Matters!

Technology Can Help AND Hurt Situational Awareness

You don’t have to look far and wide to locate clever marketing campaigns that make outrageous claims to improve our lives or solve our problems. I’ve been noticing this trend now as it relates to products claiming they “create” situational awareness. I was recently at a conference and had an opportunity to have a discussion …

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Five Best Practices for Managing the Mental Workload

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 12 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 …

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Episode 201 | When Unexpected Things Happen

In this episode, we explore what happens when faced with unexpected situations and your brain tries to make sense of the unexpected.  Length: 33 minutes click the YouTube icon to listen