Information overload

These are the first responder situational awareness and decision making issues and opportunities related to information overload. 

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. How can simulations be used in the development of situational awareness skills? The answer lies, in part, in understanding what situational …

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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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Drone Responders Interview with Charles Werner (Episode 281)

In this episode, Fire Chief (ret.) Charles Werner discusses how drone technology can be used to enhance first responder situational awareness and improve access to critical decision making information. Length: 61 minutes Click the YouTube icon to watch the full VIDEO     __________________________________________________ If you are interested in taking your understanding of situational awareness and …

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Selective Listening Can Be A Barrier To Situational Awareness

Because first responders frequently operate in environments where there are multiple auditory inputs (e.g., radio traffic, face-to-face communications, ambient sounds, etc.) they are often forced to prioritize what they listen to (or don’t listen to). This can cause issues with situational awareness.

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 Fire Department)! I offered Scott a number of ideas and thought it would be good …

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Radio Discipline (Episode 272)

  This episode discusses the importance of radio discipline in developing and maintaining situational awareness. Length: 19 minutes   Click the YouTube icon to watch the full VIDEO     __________________________________________________ If you are interested in taking your understanding of situational awareness and high-risk decision making to a higher level, check out the Situational Awareness Matters …

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Room for Improvement

I recently read an investigation report where a firefighter died and it made me sad. First, as we see so often in after action reviews, it appears as though the tragedy may have been preventable. The second thing that made me sad about this investigation report was the inaccurate and incomplete recommendations about situational awareness. …

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Noise Impacts Situational Awareness

Some time ago I had the honor of visiting and receiving a tour of the Hong Kong Fire Department training center. Many of the props used there are similar to what I have seen in the United States. However, there was one very noticeable difference in the maze they use to train firefighters. Noise! They …

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Nine considerations when evaluating incident command software

As you attend conferences that have vendor display areas, pay attention to how many incident management software vendors claim to have programs that can “develop situational awareness” in first responders. This claim is often founded on the belief that as the software is able to capture, assemble and display layers and layers of data that, …

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Eagle Scout – First Responder: The Daniel Konzelman Story (Episode 255)

Daniel Konzelman is an Eagle Scout and an accountant who found himself in the most unsuspecting place he could ever imagine. First on-scene where an Amtrak train derailed just south of Seattle on December 18, 2017.  Listen to the story of this amazing young man as he talks about what it was like to be …

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