How's Your Apparatus Staffing?

PREPARATION: MOTIVATION: Adequate staffing at the scene of any emergency can have a direct relationship on the outcome. Inadequate staffing can also contribute to the potential for harm to operating personnel. We owe it to each other to insure that...

      e. Firefighter 3

         1) Assist driver at scene

         2) Assist with standby safety line

         3) Perform exterior operations such as setting up master streams

      f. Comment: With a five-person crew, the officer is required to be part of the attack crew which

          limits size-up or supervision. The initial attack is limited to one line and exterior operations until

          the remainder of the crew is available to permit interior entry or activation of additional attack

          lines. This is probably the minimum crew that should be available to initiate interior operations

          without having to wait for additional personnel. It should be pointed out, however, that additional

          personnel and apparatus will be needed to provide relief for the initial attack crew as well as

          performing other fire scene duties.

   4. At the conclusion of the discussion, open the floor for an interactive discussion of how the

       members would utilize personnel to perform the various duties based on various staffing levels.

       Start with the maximum staffing for the piece of apparatus based on available and continue the

       exercise by eliminating one person for each round. You may want to incorporate the department’s

       standard operating procedures into the discussion. Consideration may also be given to the priority

       of the tasks.

   5. Understand that the discussion involves only the first arriving engine. As more units arrive, the

       duties can be shared with the staffing on those units.

   6. This discussion could be very thought-provoking when the next unit is delayed in arrival and/or the

       staffing level is low.

   7. The safety of operating personnel must be the primary consideration of the incident commander

       and everyone on the scene.




* Introduction

* Engine Company Duties

* Utilization of Personnel

REMOTIVATION: Understanding the duties and responsibilities of the engine company and how to deploy the available personnel to carry out those duties requires coordination and teamwork. It needs to be practiced on a regular basis so that the team can perform effectively and efficiently when called upon. As in sports, it is very difficult to win when you do not have adequate personnel.