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  • The Bored firefighter

    One thing I keep noticing on our fire grounds and many that I have watched of live fire videos is the danger of the bored firefighter. I would like to say I have never been this person, but that would be a lie. My incident was on a training burn when I watched everyone else do burn evolutions all day and I was left at the end of the day bored, and wanting to do something…..
    So here is the question. Are you ever that bored firefighter? What I have watched especially on videos lately is the bored firefighter standing next to that pristine pain of glass which beckons and calls “Break Me!”. Meanwhile the inside crew is facing heavy heat conditions, advancing on a fire that is pre flashover, but being held in check by its lack of oxygen. When the windows call is too much, crash! Crews inside are now faced with high heat, lots of un-burnt fuel, and fire that just got the big breath it was waiting for.
    What do you do to combat that boredom on your fireground, and do you teach the importance of sticking with your task and not freelancing or “helping” ventilate when it is not your assignment.

    Brandon
    http://www.firevidz.com/
    Brandon
    http://www.firevidz.com/

  • #2
    I guess I see a huge difference between standing around at training in between evolutions and working at an actual fire incident.

    There is of course standing around at training on occasion waiting your turn to participate, I tend to watch others doing the evolution to see if I can learn from them or I will talk to those in my group about how we will do the evolution.

    But to get so bored at a real incident that you go off and look for something to do that was not ordered, or part of the common tactical practices that you would do, just to have something to do seems ludicrous to me. Does the word freelancing have any meaning to you? Not only is this behavior stupid and wreckless, it is potentially life threatening to victims and firefighters.

    I guess my questions to you are simply this...How old are you? Is your maturity level enough to understand that the fire service and fire ground activities aren't there to keep you entertained like some inane video game? We are there to do a job, save lives and protect property. Some times it is heart racingly exciting and other times it is just what it is. Whether it looks like it or not, the fire ground is an organized, planned set of operations that tie together and someone going off on their own to do things because they are bored is not going to bode well with those negatively affected by that boredom enduced behavior.
    Crazy, but that's how it goes
    Millions of people living as foes
    Maybe it's not too late
    To learn how to love, and forget how to hate

    Comment


    • #3
      Agree with what Fyred said. Training is one thing, lots of waiting for your turn, but even in the most basic of our training classes people knew to wait and not try to "help". "The only real issue that I have seen in training is when I intentially assign a short crew to the engine and the bystanders try to help them flake hose ect. Sometimes the intent is to show them what to expect in a short staffed situation.

      On the scene, at the time in the fire attack that you mention, I'm not usually fortunate to have extra manpower that would be standing around being bored. That usually happens during overhaul or while waiting for the fire marshall.

      Issues with people taking windows tend to stem more from a lack of training, or different philosophies than from boredom. While there may be a lot of people standing around for various reasons at various stages of the operation, boredom is not an issue that I've really seen.

      Comment


      • #4
        I like both your comments and I think you are both right on with what these issues are stemming from. The training story was just because I cannot blog about something and pretend to say that I have not made the mistake before.

        The real issue is the lack of training, or what I am calling boredom may be better described as a person not having an assigned task or having to wait for something else to be done before they can perform their task.

        Here is an example of what I am talking about. You pull up to a house a crew is inside and you are assigned with a hose team to stretch a line around to the side of the building. While waiting for the line to get there you have nothing to do but you the fire continues to burn. I think this is the point that the untrained or undisciplined firefighter gets into trouble, and decides hey I need to get this thing opened up so we will not have as much smoke or heat while attacking.

        This shows the lack of training or understanding the fire conditions and reading smoke, yet the intent of the firefighter was to help. That is the undisciplined part.

        Here is an example of that happening, but I must preface it by saying this is a great training video to learn from, and in now way am I down talking or trash talking another department or other brother firefighters.

        http://www.firevidz.com/fireground/f...d-ventilation/

        Brandon
        http://www.firevidz.com/
        Brandon
        http://www.firevidz.com/

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by [email protected] View Post
          I like both your comments and I think you are both right on with what these issues are stemming from. The training story was just because I cannot blog about something and pretend to say that I have not made the mistake before.

          The real issue is the lack of training, or what I am calling boredom may be better described as a person not having an assigned task or having to wait for something else to be done before they can perform their task.

          Gerezus, really? Seriously, that is JUST THE WAY IT IS SOMETIMES. In order for the fireground to remain a coordinated, organized, and as SAFE as possible scene sometimes you have to wait to do your assigned task so as not to endanger others.

          I hate to keep hammering this but how old are you? Are you a junior or an actual firefighter? It almost seems like you may not have the maturity to be a firefighter if you can't comprehend that sometimes you just do NOTHING on the fireground instead of doing something that actually makes it worse just to be doing something.


          Here is an example of what I am talking about. You pull up to a house a crew is inside and you are assigned with a hose team to stretch a line around to the side of the building. While waiting for the line to get there you have nothing to do but you the fire continues to burn. I think this is the point that the untrained or undisciplined firefighter gets into trouble, and decides hey I need to get this thing opened up so we will not have as much smoke or heat while attacking.

          This shows the lack of training or understanding the fire conditions and reading smoke, yet the intent of the firefighter was to help. That is the undisciplined part.

          Well, first of all unless you were ORDERED by an officer to ventilate the structure, or to do VES, you shouldn't be breaking any windows or opening up anything. Secondly, I would hate to be you if you were to cause someone inside to be hurt or killed by your stupid, freelancing behavior. That may very well be one of the few times that I believe getting punched right in the mouth is appropriate.

          Like I said in my previous post, the fire ground is not their to keep you entertained, or free from boredom. You are there to do a job and sometimes it means standing there and waiting until it is appropriate for you to do your task or perhaps you will do nothing at all at that particular job.

          I actually shudder to think of you being assigned to RIT. Where after your initial set up, information gathering, and positioning you will not be doing much but waiting to be used if needed. I think that would drive you out of your mind.


          Here is an example of that happening, but I must preface it by saying this is a great training video to learn from, and in now way am I down talking or trash talking another department or other brother firefighters.

          http://www.firevidz.com/fireground/f...d-ventilation/

          Brandon
          http://www.firevidz.com/
          Can you explain what the point of this topic is? Did you do something stupid and are trying to get advice from others here on how to stop it? Because frankly, it seems a little blurry as to the point.
          Crazy, but that's how it goes
          Millions of people living as foes
          Maybe it's not too late
          To learn how to love, and forget how to hate

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by FyredUp View Post
            Can you explain what the point of this topic is? Did you do something stupid and are trying to get advice from others here on how to stop it? Because frankly, it seems a little blurry as to the point.
            The point of the post is to get people thinking about the importance of sticking to your assigned task. Just because you have to wait a few minutes to do your task WAIT! Don't help flake hose that is not your own, don't vent windows unless you are assigned to vent them, and don't open the door until your line is in place to initiate your attack.

            In watching videos recently and being on other blog sites i just keep seeing the same thing. The guy opening up the door before the line is in place the guys opening windows, and flashing over on their crews.

            The point of the post was to start a discussion.... and to let people know every one makes mistakes lets learn from others so we don't have to do them ourselves. I am just sick of getting on posts and blogs and watching brother firefighters tear each other apart when we should be working together to learn from each other.

            Brandon
            http://www.firevidz.com/
            Brandon
            http://www.firevidz.com/

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by [email protected] View Post
              What do you do to combat that boredom on your fireground, and do you teach the importance of sticking with your task and not freelancing or “helping” ventilate when it is not your assignment.

              Brandon
              http://www.firevidz.com/
              It's called "Discipline." Works hand-in-hand with the Unified Chain of Command as well as Standard Operating Procedures. Basically, you do something you are not supposed to do, you'll get one of several courses of action, which depend on the severity of your dumbassedness.....It could range from a discussion and ***-chewing from the Company Officer to receiving a short vacation to receiving a permanent vacation.
              "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by FWDbuff View Post
                It's called "Discipline." Works hand-in-hand with the Unified Chain of Command as well as Standard Operating Procedures. Basically, you do something you are not supposed to do, you'll get one of several courses of action, which depend on the severity of your dumbassedness.....It could range from a discussion and ***-chewing from the Company Officer to receiving a short vacation to receiving a permanent vacation.
                I tend to agree, proper training and discipline work wonders. We have had very little of this types of problems with our department. If it does happen, that person usually only does it once.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by [email protected] View Post
                  The point of the post is to get people thinking about the importance of sticking to your assigned task. Just because you have to wait a few minutes to do your task WAIT! Don't help flake hose that is not your own, don't vent windows unless you are assigned to vent them, and don't open the door until your line is in place to initiate your attack.

                  IF you are properly trained, and mature enough to understand the chain of command, the needed sequence of operations in order for safe and effcient operations, the urge to freelance should not even occur to you.

                  In watching videos recently and being on other blog sites i just keep seeing the same thing. The guy opening up the door before the line is in place the guys opening windows, and flashing over on their crews.

                  I guess I am not seeing what you are seeing occurring with the frequency you claim.

                  The point of the post was to start a discussion.... and to let people know every one makes mistakes lets learn from others so we don't have to do them ourselves. I am just sick of getting on posts and blogs and watching brother firefighters tear each other apart when we should be working together to learn from each other.

                  Once again, I have to ask what stupid thing did you do that you are seeking absolution for? Because frankly I have never heard anyone talk about the bored firefighter like he is some ADHD child unable to control his urges.

                  Brandon
                  http://www.firevidz.com/
                  Brandon, tell me is this just a ploy to get people to visit your web site to boost post count to increase your ad revenue?
                  Crazy, but that's how it goes
                  Millions of people living as foes
                  Maybe it's not too late
                  To learn how to love, and forget how to hate

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by [email protected] View Post
                    Don't help flake hose that is not your own,
                    Um, why not? So you are saying just leave a pile of spahetti on the ground because "its not yours"? Any hose that is on the ground should be faked out by anyone who passes it. As the line goes so goes the fire.

                    Originally posted by [email protected] View Post
                    don't vent windows unless you are assigned to vent them, and don't open the door until your line is in place to initiate your attack.
                    As others pointed out, this is a complete lack of discpline or training. Not boredom.

                    Originally posted by [email protected] View Post
                    In watching videos recently and being on other blog sites i just keep seeing the same thing. The guy opening up the door before the line is in place the guys opening windows, and flashing over on their crews.
                    What videos?


                    Originally posted by [email protected] View Post
                    The point of the post was to start .... http://www.firevidz.com/
                    I think the above is the point, which is why I don't click on the link.
                    Last edited by JohnVBFD; 02-02-2011, 02:21 PM.
                    Co 11
                    Virginia Beach FD

                    Amateurs practice until they get it right; professionals practice until they cannot get it wrong. Which one are you?

                    'The fire went out and nobody got hurt' is a poor excuse for a fireground critique.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      With all due respect. Get your job assignment. know your job assignment, do your job assignment, and maintain situational awareness. It is pretty d**n simple. If you are an officer, well, I understand you watching to make sure people are doing their assigned task. I don't think you are an officer and you probably ought to be concentrating on your assignment.

                      If this is a problem in your department and it directly affects you, then talk to the chief or an officer above you.
                      A coward stands by and watches wrongs committed without saying a word...Any opinions expressed are purely my own and not necessarily reflective of the views of my former departments

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Sorry, Brandon, not seeing your point either.
                        The only times I get bored on a fireground seem to be in the second, third or fourth hour of a defensive attack in bad weather, with wet gear, and no hope of the Chief springing for a coffee run. But the boredom doesn't last too long as I make it a game to find a drier more comfortable spot than my partner has.
                        I've also gotten bored at downed wires calls waiting for the power company to lolly gag on in. But then I simply pull out the map and refresh streets, grab the preplan book and review, take out a magazine, or even more likely...go to any one of the nearby vacants and do a walk through. Always something to learn or occupy your time with if you want to badly enough.

                        Bored at a good working interior fire or in the initial stages of a defensive one? Nope, not me. Too many things to do and to be done. Like someone else said, it's not too hard. Know your assignment and do it. If you have time to wait before your assignment check with command to see if there is another crew to assist.

                        Don't flake out hose that isn't yours???? That's not freelancing....that's teamwork.
                        Last edited by YFDLt08; 02-02-2011, 03:56 PM. Reason: grammar

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by [email protected] View Post
                          The point of the post is to get people thinking about the importance of sticking to your assigned task. Just because you have to wait a few minutes to do your task WAIT! Don't help flake hose that is not your own, don't vent windows unless you are assigned to vent them, and don't open the door until your line is in place to initiate your attack.

                          In watching videos recently and being on other blog sites i just keep seeing the same thing. The guy opening up the door before the line is in place the guys opening windows, and flashing over on their crews.

                          The point of the post was to start a discussion.... and to let people know every one makes mistakes lets learn from others so we don't have to do them ourselves. I am just sick of getting on posts and blogs and watching brother firefighters tear each other apart when we should be working together to learn from each other.

                          Brandon
                          http://www.firevidz.com/
                          OK, you've got to be that mangy mutt that had the "Unique Fire ground tactics, Inc" site. Same diatribe -- opinion all based off online video's and arm chair QB bull sh*tting, like a 14 yr old puke.

                          The site disappeared off the 'net after Joey DiBernardo (Ret-FDNY) called him to task today. It's either you, are you have an identical evil twin.

                          What's your story?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            So Brandon,

                            You have been exposed as another puke pretending to be what you aren't. Fantastic. I figured you were just here pushing your site trying to boost visits to boost ad revenue.

                            Okay, now just go away because you will NEVER have any credibility here.
                            Crazy, but that's how it goes
                            Millions of people living as foes
                            Maybe it's not too late
                            To learn how to love, and forget how to hate

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              The topics on the FB page were the same, but they appeared more like an outlet for an angry kid to tear ff's aprt. The video commentaries consisted of long run-on angry rants. Sounded more like a veiled ff hate site.

                              He had some fuming OTJ guys hot on his trail in short order.

                              Comment

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