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  • Accountability on the Fireground

    Anyone have a good procedure for conducting a roll call / par (whatever you like to call it) on the fireground? I know many volunteer depts use tags, but how you actually account for all members during the operation? How do the officers / members report that they are accounted for?

  • #2
    Lord knows we're trying. The problem around here is that we generally don't arrive and operate as companies. Functional crews are assembled from available personnel on-scene. The bulk of the apparatus have two-door commercial cabs, making carrying a full crew impossible.

    Early in an incident, especially, we usually don't have anyone available to be the keeper of the tags and tracking clerk, documenting who's doing what where. As incidents grow, we get enough support personnel to actually do so, personnel tend to gravitate into crews, and accountability improves.
    Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

    Everyone goes home. Safety begins with you.

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    • #3
      Each crew acccounts for the members on their crew and reports back to command they have all their people
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZdEH...e_gdata_player

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      • #4
        One tag in truck, One to officer by door before entering.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by fire49 View Post
          Each crew acccounts for the members on their crew and reports back to command they have all their people
          What happens if a crew gets trapped and a fire ground emergency has been declared, command asks for PAR and the crew that is trapped cannot communicate, does command keep up with who is where? Curious..

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          • #7
            Originally posted by fire49 View Post
            Yep. On the dry erase board


            Yep, or at least on a notepad.

            We have velcro tags as I'm sure many others do also.

            Individual crew\division leaders are responsible for assuring that IC knows where that crew is and what they're doing. No one acts without at least confirmation from IC unless it's IDLH. Example, "IC, vent crew accessing roof on c side of structure". That group doesn't proceed until IC confirms their position and what they're doing. Doing otherwise is freelancing. Crew leaders are also responsible for PAR checks of their crew members.

            We contract with Cal Fire for dispatch. At any structure fire they automatically radio the IC for a par check at timed intervals.


            What happens if a crew gets trapped and a fire ground emergency has been declared, command asks for PAR and the crew that is trapped cannot communicate, does command keep up with who is where? Curious..
            If command doesn't have at least a general idea of where your group is then you were either freelancing or command is not doing it's job.
            My wise and profound comments and opinions are mine alone and are in no way associated with any other individual or group.

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            • #8
              One department I volutneer with (I will actually go on fire calls....) has a good tag system, and enough members so that we can do 2 in 2 out or some variation of that depending on the response.

              The other department. I choose not to go there, I may get lost due to lack of accountability and safe operating procedures.

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              • #9
                The old way on volunteer department was to count the pick up trucks on the scene and see if they are all gone after the job!
                Stay Safe and Well Out There....

                Always remembering 9-11-2001 and 343+ Brothers

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                • #10
                  Capt - That's the least expense / realistic system yet! LOL - Really looking for a structured procedure of radio reports from the crew officers to command during the incident. I have very little faith in the tag system and while it may tell you who is there it does not tell if they are accounted for. If Officers give radio reports (pars / whatever) every 15 minutes or so, how do you account for members operating remotely from the Officer? Does the Officer call them or do they only advise command who and how many members they have and command contact the members not accounted for? Trying to develop a plan and trying to limit radio transmissions as much as possible

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                  • #11
                    Originally posted by THTMAN View Post
                    Capt - That's the least expense / realistic system yet! LOL - Really looking for a structured procedure of radio reports from the crew officers to command during the incident. I have very little faith in the tag system and while it may tell you who is there it does not tell if they are accounted for. If Officers give radio reports (pars / whatever) every 15 minutes or so, how do you account for members operating remotely from the Officer? Does the Officer call them or do they only advise command who and how many members they have and command contact the members not accounted for? Trying to develop a plan and trying to limit radio transmissions as much as possible


                    As you said every 15 to 30 minutes a roll call should be down. Eveyone works in pairs and the Officr should know where are. Not a real problem with engine guys as they tend to say as a team, but truck guys operates in pairs, a lot of the time in different parts of the floor or building.
                    Stay Safe and Well Out There....

                    Always remembering 9-11-2001 and 343+ Brothers

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                    • #12
                      And..........

                      Originally posted by THTMAN View Post
                      Capt - That's the least expense / realistic system yet! LOL - Really looking for a structured procedure of radio reports from the crew officers to command during the incident. I have very little faith in the tag system and while it may tell you who is there it does not tell if they are accounted for. If Officers give radio reports (pars / whatever) every 15 minutes or so, how do you account for members operating remotely from the Officer? Does the Officer call them or do they only advise command who and how many members they have and command contact the members not accounted for? Trying to develop a plan and trying to limit radio transmissions as much as possible

                      Our System is everyone has a Tag on their PPE. Each Apparatus has a Ring. When you climb in, you clip your tag on the ring. On the Fireground, one of the arriving Officers is designated as the Accountability Officer by the IC. He/She will maintain a count of members operating and their assigned location. Each unit officer is responsible for their crew. A timer is running on the Dispatch console any time personnel are operating in a Hazardous area, and the IC is "Prompted" at 15 minute intervals..........

                      Note to the OP - Why are you trying to limit Radio Traffic??........
                      Never use Force! Get a Bigger Hammer.
                      In memory of
                      Chief Earle W. Woods, 1912 - 1997
                      Asst. Chief John R. Woods Sr. 1937 - 2006

                      IACOJ Budget Analyst

                      I Refuse to be a Spectator. If I come to the Game, I'm Playing.

                      www.gdvfd18.com

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                      • #13
                        Originally posted by THTMAN View Post
                        If Officers give radio reports (pars / whatever) every 15 minutes or so, how do you account for members operating remotely from the Officer? Does the Officer call them or do they only advise command who and how many members they have and command contact the members not accounted for? Trying to develop a plan and trying to limit radio transmissions as much as possible
                        This is how we do it...

                        Our dispatch (Cal Fire) calls for a PAR check at timed intervals. It is programmed into their dispatch software so a prompt comes up on their screen automatically. They contact the IC and ask for a PAR check.

                        At a structure fire we have operating crews or groups. Examples are rescue group, fire attack, RIC, vent group, exposure group etc. Groups are 2 or more firefighters. Each group has at least one radio.

                        Crews\groups can also be labled by location, ie; division 2b will be working on the 2nd floor, left side.

                        It is the responsibility of the officer\leader of each group to maintain contact with all group members at all times. Either visual, verbal or physical. Except for extreme IDLH situations, anyone acting alone without order from or comunication with their group leader or IC is freelancing and that's a BIG NO-NO.

                        We usually use 2 channels, one for command and one tactical for operations. When dispatch calls for a PAR check, all non-emergency radio traffic stops. The IC announces that they will be conducting a PAR check and then waits 1 minute for each group to establish PAR. The IC then contacts each group to verify PAR.

                        Example...

                        "vent crew, IC, PAR check"
                        "IC, vent crew has PAR"

                        And so on until each group is accounted for.

                        This continues every 15 minutes or so until there is no longer an IDLH condition anywhere on the fireground.
                        Last edited by Blulakr; 11-19-2010, 02:57 AM.
                        My wise and profound comments and opinions are mine alone and are in no way associated with any other individual or group.

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                        • #14
                          Blu - That is very close to what we have set up. How do you account for members operating remote from the Group Leader (Officer)? Ie; Does the IC call each Driver of an apparatus to check on them or is it the Officers responsibility or are they not contacted at all?

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                          • #15
                            Chief - To answer (as best as possible) your question on limiting radio traffic, I am basically referring to not tying up the fireground channel with Officers calling members operating remotely from them (Drivers, Vent Team, etc.) in order to account for them. Also the length of time it takes Command to conduct the PAR of all the units. If we were operating with 5 engines, 2 ladders, RIT, 3 Chief Officers and a PAR is called for, you would most likely have 7 Officers calling their Drivers and additionally any member performing outside operations. It could get very busy on the radio very quickly. I was just looking for the best way to keep it to a minimum without adversely affecting radio transmissions between units that need to communicate in regards to the on going operation. Our plan may be to have the Officer include how many members responded on the apparatus and who they actually have accounted for visually or verbally. Command (or member assigned to conduct the PAR) would then call the member or team from that unit that is not accounted for. Ie; "Engine 1 responded w/5, we are operating on the 1st floor and have PAR except the Driver". Command would then call Engine 1 Driver for their status.

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