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Should All FF's be EMT's or above

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  • #31
    I think ChicagoFF breaks away from the TV more than most people on here.

    Not everyone wants to be EMS certified, so why force it? We require a minimum first responder in my department, and that's just so we can legally assist an ambulance crew if they need us, and is more of a hold over rule from when we actually ran an ambulance. Does everyone want to be an EMT, or medic? NO! Why force them. Some of the worst EMT's and Medics, are the people who don't want to do it, and are forced to. Making someone do something they don't want to, usually doesn't get the best outcome out of people. I'm not saying anyone will let a patient die, but people aren't going to be going out of their way to be super medic.

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    • #32
      Well...Yes and no.

      Face it, the number of fires are on the way down and have been for years. We need to deversify, and EMS is a good place. Why? Simple, people will always need health care. Hold on, before you "big city" brothers pounce, your situation is a bit different. You all are still plenty busy enough actually fighting fires. In no way would I ever suggest that FDNY needs to start running ALS engine companies. Or Chicago, or Boston or...

      But in many areas of the country, mine included, we need EMS. Whithout it, we would be running two FF engine and truck companies, or we would lose companies all together. Our fire load just doesnt justify our current staffing/appararus levels. For us, EMS has been money in the bank.

      As for the question, where you work should determine your level of EMS training. Here, every FF is at least at the EMT level. As for FDNY, CPR/basic first-aid would be fine.
      Fire Marshal/Safety Officer

      IAAI-NFPA-IAFC/VCOS-Retired IAFF

      "No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government"
      RUSH-Tom Sawyer

      Success is when skill meets opportunity
      Failure is when fantasy meets reality

      Comment


      • #33
        One of the most difficult things to do is to quantify the value of a fire department. Even if fires are down it’s only a matter of time before the fire monster strikes your area with a vengeance. The fact of the matter is that you have to be ready for it. A backup goalie on a hockey team has to be ready to play because if the starter takes a puck in the head, he’s going to be expected to perform. Just because fires may be down is no reason to commit ones thoughts to other things like EMS duties and let firefighting take a backseat. This is exactly how the EMS scourge takes over the firehouse. Pretty soon that crusty old jakes are forced out because they’re viewed upon as being unimportant in this new modern age. When the sh*t hits the fan everyone will be glad that the jakes were there. Or maybe they’ll be so caught up in their fourteen syllable words that they won’t even notice.

        Stay Safe

        Comment


        • #34
          Originally posted by firefighter1962 View Post
          One of the most difficult things to do is to quantify the value of a fire department. Even if fires are down it’s only a matter of time before the fire monster strikes your area with a vengeance. The fact of the matter is that you have to be ready for it. A backup goalie on a hockey team has to be ready to play because if the starter takes a puck in the head, he’s going to be expected to perform. Just because fires may be down is no reason to commit ones thoughts to other things like EMS duties and let firefighting take a backseat. This is exactly how the EMS scourge takes over the firehouse. Pretty soon that crusty old jakes are forced out because they’re viewed upon as being unimportant in this new modern age. When the sh*t hits the fan everyone will be glad that the jakes were there. Or maybe they’ll be so caught up in their fourteen syllable words that they won’t even notice.

          Stay Safe

          Well said!
          Last edited by FDAIC485; 02-14-2007, 09:00 PM.
          I believe them bones are me. Some say we are born into the grave. I feel so alone, gonna end up a big ol' pile a them bones

          -J. Cantrell

          Comment


          • #35
            Originally posted by FDAIC485 View Post
            I guess you don't break away from the TV much at the firehouse than do you?
            Yeah, you're right, we don't do much here. Where are you a fireman? I ask because since you question my dedication and how much we do, I thought it would be interesting to hear where you work and your engines stats.
            I am a complacent liability to the fire service

            Comment


            • #36
              Originally posted by firefighter1962 View Post
              One of the most difficult things to do is to quantify the value of a fire department. Even if fires are down it’s only a matter of time before the fire monster strikes your area with a vengeance. The fact of the matter is that you have to be ready for it. A backup goalie on a hockey team has to be ready to play because if the starter takes a puck in the head, he’s going to be expected to perform. Just because fires may be down is no reason to commit ones thoughts to other things like EMS duties and let firefighting take a backseat. This is exactly how the EMS scourge takes over the firehouse. Pretty soon that crusty old jakes are forced out because they’re viewed upon as being unimportant in this new modern age. When the sh*t hits the fan everyone will be glad that the jakes were there. Or maybe they’ll be so caught up in their fourteen syllable words that they won’t even notice.

              Stay Safe
              Well said, and I agree. Unfortunatly, the reality is taxes that to a man, John Q thinks are way to high. Run numbers are what politicos see, and they are the ones that decide how much of "the pot" the FD gets. Its simple math. Neither John Q nor their elected reps are interested in "what ifs" or ""just in cases".

              So I ask you, are we better off with 4 on the rig with EMS funding, or should we go back to the old way with 2 on a rig and privates running EMS? Oh, and we have more rigs now as well.

              All Im trying to say is, if your FD finds itself in a position that the politicos are talking cuts, EMS may be the answer to keep yourselfs from being gutted. And you have to admit, running EMS calls with your BRT is better then not haveing your BRT at all.

              And BTW, that "scourge " as you put has been in our firehouses since 1980.
              Fire Marshal/Safety Officer

              IAAI-NFPA-IAFC/VCOS-Retired IAFF

              "No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government"
              RUSH-Tom Sawyer

              Success is when skill meets opportunity
              Failure is when fantasy meets reality

              Comment


              • #37
                if the department runs in tandem with medics on medical calls, everyone should have atleast FR and in alot of areas, should have EMT-B.
                FF I
                FF II
                Hazmat Operations
                EMT-B
                ---------------------------------------------------

                The light at the end of the tunnel has been temporarly shut off due to the current work load. The Mangement

                When all else fails USE DUCT-TAPE!!!

                My views posted in this fourm are my personal views only and do not reflect on any agencies that I am afiliated with.

                Comment


                • #38
                  Originally Posted by firefighter1962
                  One of the most difficult things to do is to quantify the value of a fire department. Even if fires are down it’s only a matter of time before the fire monster strikes your area with a vengeance. The fact of the matter is that you have to be ready for it. A backup goalie on a hockey team has to be ready to play because if the starter takes a puck in the head, he’s going to be expected to perform. Just because fires may be down is no reason to commit ones thoughts to other things like EMS duties and let firefighting take a backseat. This is exactly how the EMS scourge takes over the firehouse. Pretty soon that crusty old jakes are forced out because they’re viewed upon as being unimportant in this new modern age. When the sh*t hits the fan everyone will be glad that the jakes were there. Or maybe they’ll be so caught up in their fourteen syllable words that they won’t even notice.

                  Stay Safe
                  I agree with you there


                  Originally posted by ADSNWFLD View Post
                  Over half of our work is at EMS related jobs. You need to have a level of training that supports what we go on.
                  If half of your calls were Haz Mat would you not support guys being Haz Mat techs? If 500 out of 1,000 calls were confined space rescues wouldn't you all be CS tech?
                  If your department doesn't run EMS great, don't get your EMT-B. Even if that is the case you need to be a cretified first responder with CPR and AED.
                  When people have a bad day we are called, the days of a fire crew standing by the patient pointing and waiting for the medics is over. If you get called for EMS then you need to be trained.
                  I don't care if you only go because the department makes you, if when that ticket comes over it is for a first responder or ambulance assist then you need to be an EMT.
                  I kind of disagree I dont think every firefighter needs to be EMT. Yes first responder but thats it. You can say EMS is taking over fire all you want but EMS gets called to alot of BS calls. Cause guess what everytime someone has any type of pain wheather its 2 am toe pain they call EMS because they have been taught if you hurt go to the doc and guess what they call 911 and we have to go (Unfortunately). So if it were drilled in peoples head that everytime something minor happened at the house that they needed to call 911 for just say outlet sparked when pluggin something in or lights flickered well guess what the fire calls would go way up and we could say fire is taking over EMS. If EMS only responded to the calls that they actually need to go to guess what the calls would go way down.
                  Last edited by Tann3100; 02-14-2007, 10:27 PM.
                  IACOJ
                  FTM-PTB

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Originally posted by ChicagoFF View Post
                    Yeah, you're right, we don't do much here. Where are you a fireman? I ask because since you question my dedication and how much we do, I thought it would be interesting to hear where you work and your engines stats.
                    I'm not questioning your dedication....I don't even know you. What type of response would you expect after the remark you posted?

                    And, I don't get involved in the "who's ax is bigger" competition.
                    I believe them bones are me. Some say we are born into the grave. I feel so alone, gonna end up a big ol' pile a them bones

                    -J. Cantrell

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Originally posted by FDAIC485 View Post
                      I'm not questioning your dedication....I don't even know you. What type of response would you expect after the remark you posted?

                      And, I don't get involved in the "who's ax is bigger" competition.
                      What was your expectation from this?

                      If you show me a firefighter that does not want to provide EMS in some form or fashion, I'll show you a person you will find in front of the TV or in bed sleeping at the earliest possible moment.
                      What are the odds that some of us could exclude EMS runs and still have less "couch" or "TV" time than you?

                      FTM-PTB

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        OK, I agree that we run a lot of BS EMS with the ambulance. My department sends an engine (ALS) on just about every call (Unresponsive, unknown medical, SOB, person who passed out, full arrest, etc) but as the officer I go available and use the run as a mini preplan drill. I usually ask the family to see the pt's meds and that gives me a great opportunity to look around.
                        Without the EMS calls I wouldn't see all of the inlaw appartments, single family turned SRO, pack rat homes and all sorts of other bizzare stuff.
                        So I use it as a chance to learn the buildings in town better. I want to know where the people who can't rescue themselves live, I want to see the house with 18" isles through the years of newspapers, I want to see the house with a Harley in the livingroom before it is on fire with smoke to the floor.

                        I was one of those guys who watched Emergency! and said I want to be those guys and 20 years in, I am a firefighter, medic, HazMat tech, Diver, collapse, rope, confined space, and trench tech. My part time job is teaching those subjects (just to stay current)and I go to more drills off shift then many do on shift. Getting involved in EMS takes some time on your part, but how many of you can say that if it wasn't for you this person would be in the basement of the hospital and not walking out of it.

                        Again if the tones go off and it is for an EMS call you are cheating the residents by not being properly trained.

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          The sad thing is that there are a lot of departments out there who exist only because of EMS. They run EMS so they get a bigger budget. A lot of departments in the DFW area may only be around 20,000-30,000 people but they will have two to three stations only because of the EMS factor. If they ran private EMS, more than likely a lot of 50,000 population cities would have like one or two stations with a 3 man engine.

                          Most of them rely on mutual aid if they ever catch a fire and their main goal is to stop it from spreading.

                          I got to thinking that in January, there was like at least 5 or 6 structure fires on my shift..... but where was I? I was staffing the medic that was last out. Oh yeah, many times (and I know i'm not the only one) have I been running a rectal bleed or a lady who didnt take her medication and wanted to go to the hospital because her blood pressure is up when there is a large structure at a strip mall or a bad wreck that requires a heliocopter.

                          I may have the firefighter logo on my shirt, but, a lot of firefighters out there work under the rule of "We are a EMS department with firefighting capabilities"
                          Its a sad thing really. But, it does keep us busy.

                          With that being said, it varies from area to area. In my opinon, does every engine company in the US need to be fully staffed with EMT's and Medic's? NO!

                          But, I do advocate the idea of having an engine out there with at least an advanced trained person, be it intermediate or Medic. Some may disagree but that is my opinon.

                          I think fully medic staffed engines and ambo's are a waste, even if it makes things easier.


                          And FFFRED, u still owe me 5 forum dollars from a topic in the off duty forum about a guy from deepthroat. I demand my money with interest
                          The Box. You opened it. We Came...

                          "You'll take my life but I'll take your's too. You'll fire musket but I'll run you through. So when your waiting for the next attack, you'll better understand there's no turn back."

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                          • #43
                            I don't think it should be like that all. For one reason, it keeps everything in checks and balances. We all know the EMT-B is there to save the medics butt in hairy situations, and then so forth. Another reason is that there are a lot of volunteer departments that will take all the help they can get. Let's face it, NOT everybody has a diploma (I have mine btw, and I am going through EMT-B) therefor they can't get their license. I have known some really good firefighters that never graduated. So what do you do then? Now you ticked off a lot of people, and you are even more short-staffed. My last reason I can think of is funding. Same situation, that small little BFE department now has to fork over all this money to send their firefighters to. That money could be used for something that would be more beneficial to the department. Don't get me wrong, I think all FFs should have a minimul of first responder. Around here I know the first responder class is actually free for the fire departments, but I am not sure about anywhere else. What is the point of being at an MVA without entrapment other than fluid control and fire suppression. A lot of the ones I have been to required very little to no mitigation for those hazards. That is just my opinion.

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                            • #44
                              First Responder minimum, EMT preferred....One of the things I hated when I first started volunteering was the fact that I could cut someone out of a vehicle, but didn't know squat when it came to medical treatment once I got them out. After obtaining my undergrad, I immediately went back and got my EMT-B and later upgraded to EMT-IV a few years later. I really don't do any volunteer work anymore, but since my PD is a dual-functioning agency, my EMT license has been a great benefit. Actually an extra $1200 a year to have it.

                              ps...DOT First Responder is a little over 60 hrs. I am a FR Instructor for my department.

                              Most of you guys on this forum know that if you're in a decent sized paid department, the growing trend is to not only have EMT's on the Engine and Truck companies, but ALS not far behind. Every FF with Metro Nashville FD in TN is an EMT and most of the companies have become ALS. Like it or not that's the way it's going....

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                              • #45
                                Better than the Funny Papers

                                I posted this on another thread a few months ago. But with a few changes it seems to fit here, "as long as you have a sense of humor." I take a Fatalistic attitude toward the downfall of the traditional Fire house and the rising
                                importance of words like Telemetry, Emt, Paramedic, Ambulance Supervisor, Deputy Brain Surgeon, ALS Engine, Plan 1, 2, 3, etc... But that's just me. Guess you had to be there!



                                I can well remember when our Engine Company did 3,500 runs a year and we were only the third busiest in Chicago.(Eng. 45 was doing over 4,000) We had check the boxes and other miscellaneous runs, but also a ton of fires. GUESS WHAT, NO FIRST RESPONDERS. The only ambulance's we had were Cadillac Hearse type, and you had to have better than 20 years on the job (And usually some physical problem) to get assigned to one. They carried a little cheater bottle of oxygen and the big E&J was in a corner of the rig with dust on it. IT WAS THE, YOU CALL - WE HAUL principle. If they could make it out to the curb, and crawl in the back, they got dropped off at the nearest hospital emergency room. THEN in the mid 70's everything changed. CHICAGO was taking Federal money, and they got a load of Brand new Pontiac ambulances (25 I think, and it was called the Model Cities Program. Now there are about 60 or more) It was a miserable 24 Hours if you got detailed to that cursed ambulance. They started making us go to the ACADEMY and fool around and Resuscitate ANNIE. How degrading. Remember we considered ourselves Leather Lunged Heroes (We didn't use SCBA then.) Suddenly every civilian in the ghetto with a hang-nail insisted on their free ride to a hospital. The tide was turning, LESS FIRES and more NURSE MAID for whiners. Then to our relief came EMT's. Not much help in the watch card, but at least we didn't have to deal with them except to answer the speaker for their runs. Later came the DOCTORS. They had little scissors on their belt and knew everything. CALLED themselves PARAMEDICS. Nobody wanted to be in a house with an Ambulance. And to boot they were trying to get into our Pension. The TAIL was starting to wag the DOG. We might as well park that big 2000 GPM pumper in the back. All the ambulances were running non stop. They couldn't keep up. We had to follow them on runs (or be First responders and get to stand around and watch somebody vomit and have Diarrhea at the same time.) Mostly we'd get in back and spell Dr. Marcus Welby and the EMT when they got tired of giving CPR. Then the big Diesel Pumper would follow the Ambulance like a Polish trailer across town to the nearest Trauma Center to pick up our guys at the Emergency entrance. It was no longer the Chicago Fire Department, it was the Ambulance Department. Then in 1980 we went on STRIKE against the WICKED WITCH
                                (Mayor Jayne Byrne) and they stood beside us. Hey, they're not so bad. Guess there's room for both of us. We got our first CONTRACT. The city began to pay more if you would CROSS TRAIN and become a SEMI-DOCTOR. But the fact still is "NOBODY" wants to be in a house with an Ambulance. And it only get's worse. What's the solution ?
                                I don't know, but it's like my dear, departed Mother would say, " You do it once, it's your job."

                                IFSTA Manuals, NFPA.. These are books written by some Chief from BOSTON or TIMBUCKTOO who does not use the same terminology that you are used to. "Hey goofy, get the roof will ya". They are only to be opened in the event you get stuck in a study class for a promotion and may prove confusing!

                                Have a good one, and stay warm.. Rockie..
                                Last edited by Rockie; 02-15-2007, 03:19 PM.

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