Teamwork

These are the first responder situational awareness and decision making issues and opportunities related to team work, team coordination and team dynamics.

Working Command and Situational Awareness

I seem to be getting asked a lot lately about what the first arriving company officer should do at a working structure fire. Specifically, the debate revolves around two basic premise. Should the first arriving company officer assume a fixed command position outside the structure and coordinate the activities of incoming units? Or, should the …

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High Reliability Organizations – Processes

Last month I wrote a piece on the traits of high reliability organizations (HROs) and received a lot of very positive feedback. Thank you! This article will focus on the processes used by HROs. These processes definitely provide some valuable lessons for public safety agencies. Compare your organization and see if you may find some …

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High Reliability Organizations – Traits

There’s a lot being talked about these days about the concept of high reliability organizations. The concept is being embraced by many hospitals throughout the United States and, arguably, for good reason. The principles of highly reliable organizations have direct application to first responders. This contribution focuses on helping you understand the overarching concept of …

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Trained to Fail

There are probably few things I say in a classroom that raises the ire of instructors more than “You’re training your members to fail.” I understand why they wouldn’t want to hear that. No instructor wants a member to fail. Even more so, no instructor wants to be implicated for being the one responsible for …

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Staffing for the Mayday/Rapid Intervention

I recently received an inquiry from an SAMatters member asking my thoughts on front loading command personnel in the event of a Mayday. Specifically, the reader wanted to know if I thought it was a good idea. I could answer the question in one word: Yes. However, I like to help my readers build deep …

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Tracking of personnel

Accountability: A critically important component to emergency scene safety when personnel operate 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 at and …

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Fireground Safety: Mistakes and Best Practices

Utah Winter Fire School: 117 more first responders are now “in the loop!” On January 13 I presented two sessions of Fireground Safety: Mistakes and Best Practices at the 2012 Utah Winter Fire School. There were 117 attendees in the two programs. The programs focused on 10 common mistakes and 10 best practices to fix …

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