Leader

Collapse

Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Safety Question

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Safety Question

    I know someone will get the wrong idea, so don't flame me too bad. My question is have our leaders replaced the term fear with safety? Have we safeguarded ourselves into not doing our job appropriately. Have we put our tactical priorities in the wrong order? We need to go back to the days of going in and putting the fire out or doing good S&R. Have we placed RIT or RIC before other tasks. I heard an FDNY Lt. speak about this briefly and it really sparked a debate in the firehouse. Thanks
    Jim Gower
    Newport News Fire Department, Virginia

  • #2
    No flaming from me Jim.

    I don't think you can paint the entire fire service with a single brush, but I concur with many of your sentiments - especially with individuals who move up the ranks faster than their experience should allow.

    We seem to have alot of Chiefs that you could not have melted and poured on a fire when they were firefighters and/or company officers. Because they had no nuts when they were "working", they don't think you should have any either.

    As long as your uniform is squared away, the engine house is clean, and there is 2 in/2 out or RIT, nothing else matters. House burns down, but job well done because "everyone went home" the chant for the pussification of the fire service.
    RK
    cell #901-494-9437

    Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

    Comment


    • #3
      I think post-9/11 there were a lot of people that saw the prestige and romance associated with the fire service. The way people put firemen on a pedestal. Individually people still do, mothers tell their kids to thank us for protecting them, people bringing food to the firehouse, people waving to us. Many people do hold us in high regard, but I think a lot of people lured into the fire service because of that, forgot that special place in people's heart was bought with 200+ years of blood, sweat, and tears. We want the prestige, but don't want to do the dirty work the men that came before did to earn it.

      Comment


      • #4
        As a Chief officer and shift commander, it is my duty to make sure that my personnel go home at the end of their duty tour.

        We have far too many career fire officers that fall into the "booksmart, certifications up the wazoo" category that have little or no experience in actual fireground operations... They can tell you in theory what should happen... but there is a vast difference between theory and reality.. and that gets firefighters killed and injured.

        We have far too many paid on call and volunteer FD's that "elect" officers based on popularity instead of actual credentials and experience... and that gets firefighters killed and injured.

        We keep getting mandates that we cannot possibly afford, train for or keep up with while ignoring training on our bread and butter operations.

        We also have to deal with the politicians.. who have no qualms about cutting FD operational budgets to keep their pet projects funded and are swayed by the internet idiots who hate the FD out of ignorance or jealousy.

        Ray McCormack stated that the best way to keep our people safe is to go in and put the fire out... I agree with Ray.
        Last edited by DeputyChiefGonzo; 07-26-2010, 06:52 AM.
        ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
        Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by jimmyg34 View Post
          I know someone will get the wrong idea, so don't flame me too bad. My question is have our leaders replaced the term fear with safety? Have we safeguarded ourselves into not doing our job appropriately. Have we put our tactical priorities in the wrong order? We need to go back to the days of going in and putting the fire out or doing good S&R. Have we placed RIT or RIC before other tasks. I heard an FDNY Lt. speak about this briefly and it really sparked a debate in the firehouse. Thanks

          So you think Scott isn't doing the correct thing or that Ken didn't do the job correctly?

          This is what I am reading from your post!
          Stay Safe and Well Out There....

          Always remembering 9-11-2001 and 343+ Brothers

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by DeputyChiefGonzo View Post
            As a Chief officer and shift commander, it is my duty to make sure that my personnel go home at the end of their duty tour.

            We have far too many career fire officers that fall into the "booksmart, certifications up the wazoo" category that have little or no experience in actual fireground operations... They can tell you in theory what should happen... but there is a vast difference between theory and reality.. and that gets firefighters killed and injured.

            We have far too many paid on call and volunteer FD's that "elect" officers based on popularity instead of actual credentials and experience... and that gets firefighters killed and injured.

            We keep getting mandates that we cannot possibly afford, train for or keep up with while ignoring training on our bread and butter operations.

            We also have to deal with the politicians.. who have no qualms about cutting FD operational budgets to keep their pet projects funded and are swayed by the internet idiots who hate the FD out of ignorance or jealousy.

            Ray McCormack stated that the best way to keep our people safe is to go in and put the fire out... I agree with Ray.
            I couldn't possibly add any more or say it better. Well done, Chief.

            Comment


            • #7
              No flaming here Jimmy, but I'll give you my perspective as a chief....Gonzo hit it on the head...

              As a Chief officer and shift commander, it is my duty to make sure that my personnel go home at the end of their duty tour.
              That's the difference between the firefighter or line officer vs. the chief. I believe that the individual firefighter has not lost the courage or grit of the firefighters of the past. He is willing to take the risks to get the job done. He is mainly only responsible for his own safety. He is also usually younger and, to a greater or lesser extent, somewhat of an adrenaline junkie. After all, isn't that what drew a lot of us to firefighting in the first place? (Be honest, now....)

              This is a guy who, if he wasn't firefighting, would probabably be rock climbing or dirt bike racing or some other exciting thing. That's what young guys do.

              Now, add several years of experience and maturity. More importantly, make him an officer and give him responsibility for a crew or a shift or, in a chief's case, the whole department. If you have not yet had the responsibility for the lives of others, it's hard to understand the effect this can have on your approach to firefighting and to risk taking in general. You find that it's a lot harder to take the same risks with others' safety that you were willing to take with your own a few years ago.

              Experience also plays a role here. The experienced officer will (hopefully) see hazards and recognize deteriorating conditions that the newer firefighter may not have the experience to recognize yet, or is just so hyper-focused on the task at hand that he did not see it. So the young firefighter gripes about why the crew was pulled out early when in reality the experienced officer may well have just prevented a tragedy.

              It also takes awhile to accept the philosophy that we don't risk our lives to save a crappy building that will be torn down anyway after the fire.

              And to address something else Capt. Gonzo said...

              We have far too many paid on call and volunteer FD's that "elect" officers based on popularity instead of actual credentials and experience... and that gets firefighters killed and injured.
              Guilty as charged. I was elected to my position by the membership of the department. There are no minimum qualifications to be chief of this department. I believe (of course, I may be biased ) that I'm one of the most qualified in the department to hold the position. The chiefs before me, I think, were also the most qualified we had available at the time. It's the old adage of "In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king".

              I could see how, in some departments, it could become a popularity contest. In some respects it's true in my department as well. I still feel that for the most part we have always chosen the most qualified person out of the available choices.
              Chief Dwayne LeBlanc
              Paincourtville Volunteer Fire Department
              Paincourtville, LA

              "I have a dream. It's not a big dream, it's just a little dream. My dream — and I hope you don't find this too crazy — is that I would like the people of this community to feel that if, God forbid, there were a fire, calling the fire department would actually be a wise thing to do. You can't have people, if their houses are burning down, saying, 'Whatever you do, don't call the fire department!' That would be bad."
              — C.D. Bales, "Roxanne"

              Comment


              • #8
                Posted by dmeblanc
                Guilty as charged. I was elected to my position by the membership of the department. There are no minimum qualifications to be chief of this department. I believe (of course, I may be biased ) that I'm one of the most qualified in the department to hold the position. The chiefs before me, I think, were also the most qualified we had available at the time. It's the old adage of "In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king".

                I could see how, in some departments, it could become a popularity contest. In some respects it's true in my department as well. I still feel that for the most part we have always chosen the most qualified person out of the available choices.
                Chief.. This wasn't meant to slight you at all.

                If I recall correctly.. you do have the experience working as a fire officer at a refinery.

                There are some elected chiefs that do have to meet criteria to be considered.. then there are some that only get it because they throw the best parties and buy the "beverages"....
                Last edited by DeputyChiefGonzo; 07-26-2010, 07:43 PM.
                ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
                Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

                Comment


                • #9
                  I find this thread interesting, especially with a recent thread about reducing the number of deaths.

                  Someone mentioned letting a house burn to the ground, but everyone was safe and made it home. Is a building worth a man's life, even a firefighter's? I believe a lot in the saying "risk a lot to save a lot, risk little to save little." If we have trapped victims that could still be alive, we will do everything we are able to save them. If we show up to a fully involved house, and everyone is out, what am I saving by risking the lives of firefighters?

                  The world has changed. Fire departments have learned the hard way there are just some things not risking our own lives for. Fires are hotter, and structures are less safe to enter. At some point, you do have to manage risk versus gain.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    There are some elected chiefs that do have to meet criteria to be considered.. then there are some that only get it because they throw the best parties and buy the "beverages"....
                    HAHA, and then you have the ones like my first dept., the Chief was the mayor, and all of the Captains were city council members, and the Loo's were the Capt.'s buddies. Can we say major politics in that dept.? When the dept spit over a stupid mayor election, I figured it was time to turn in my gear and head to the city fire dept in Dalton. So much for brotherhood at that dept eh?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by DeputyChiefGonzo View Post
                      We have far too many paid on call and volunteer FD's that "elect" officers based on popularity instead of actual credentials and experience... .
                      Or because nobody else wants the job.

                      In theory we only "nominate" our chief officers. The fire district board actually appoints them. In fact, unless they've got a bone to pick with a certain individual, they rubber stamp the department's choices.
                      Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

                      Everyone goes home. Safety begins with you.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by DeputyChiefGonzo View Post
                        As a Chief officer and shift commander, it is my duty to make sure that my personnel go home at the end of their duty tour.

                        We have far too many career fire officers that fall into the "booksmart, certifications up the wazoo" category that have little or no experience in actual fireground operations... They can tell you in theory what should happen... but there is a vast difference between theory and reality.. and that gets firefighters killed and injured.

                        We have far too many paid on call and volunteer FD's that "elect" officers based on popularity instead of actual credentials and experience... and that gets firefighters killed and injured.

                        We keep getting mandates that we cannot possibly afford, train for or keep up with while ignoring training on our bread and butter operations.

                        We also have to deal with the politicians.. who have no qualms about cutting FD operational budgets to keep their pet projects funded and are swayed by the internet idiots who hate the FD out of ignorance or jealousy.
                        DITTO...



                        I have seen many young people promoted to ranks faster now than anytime in my 38 years.

                        Theory is a great thing if you are talking about paper projects. But in the real world, most of us that have been around a long while know the book goes out the window when you really need to work.

                        There is alot that we can prepare new people for, but we can never put guts and fireground experience into a firefighter in a 100 hours of classroom and 20 hours of practicals.

                        Ever since the RISK-BENEFIT "thing" came out in the 90s, we seem to move away from doing the grunt work. I have seen departments roll up and immediately go to defense on a laundry room with extension into the attic and other calls that we had no problem going offense a few years ago.

                        During a recent mutual-aid call (we assisted), we arrived only to find the first due department on defense. When my officer advised me by phone of the situation, I recalled them. Why do I need to assist a defensive situation when there was no intent to do anything but watch it burn? The opinion of my officer was if command was inclined, they could have saved at least 50-60% of the structure, you know those personal items in the bedrooms and closets that none of us can replace. But no, it was not to be. Too bad that we chose to forget our past and purpose at times. The young chief of that department will not last... he lost his heart somewhere along the way.

                        The point is, we can still be proactive and use our heads. We can still do the job and not jeapordize safety. But of course, firefighting is dangerous stuff. Did we expect a cushy and easy?

                        Sorry... this debate always gets me going. In the meantime, stay safe and everyone be sure to kiss your kids tonight, or morning when you get home.
                        HAVE PLAN.............WILL TRAVEL

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by PaladinKnight View Post
                          Ever since the RISK-BENEFIT "thing" came out in the 90s, we seem to move away from doing the grunt work. I have seen departments roll up and immediately go to defense on a laundry room with extension into the attic and other calls that we had no problem going offense a few years ago.
                          Ive seen that too. Getting in there with a handline and some hooks will go a long way. And hey if were going to play the whole risk v benefit thing, getting the fire out NOW and going back in service has our resources available should another fire happen.

                          But I guess who cares what happens, as long as everyone goes home I guess every fire is a "victory"

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            There is a fire triangle for officers too,

                            Experience
                            Common Sense
                            Education

                            Like with fire you take one away and is will fizzle out. In the case of an officer that is a bad thing.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Acklan View Post
                              There is a fire triangle for officers too,

                              Experience
                              Common Sense
                              Education

                              Like with fire you take one away and is will fizzle out. In the case of an officer that is a bad thing.
                              Excellent analogy, Brother...
                              ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
                              Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

                              Comment

                              300x600 Ad Unit (In-View)

                              Collapse

                              Upper 300x250

                              Collapse

                              Taboola

                              Collapse

                              Leader

                              Collapse
                              Working...
                              X