Shifts in Time

 Good afternoon from the jumpeat. As I was driving home this morning from a busy shift at the firehouse I started thinking about how it's seems like our call volume goes up in the summertime. It always appears that we run more of everything, except for fires, during the summer.  In my home department we run 24 hour shifts and the firefighter's split their 24 with 12 hours on the engine and 12 on the ambulance. This is the perfect mix for firefighters with EMS in their blood because you get 12 hours of both. 


When the temperature goes up the people get more active, especially during the nighttime. I contribute this to being more active at night to avoid the heat of the day.  Many of us work the 24 on, 48 off shift cycle and it can lead to long days and nights. Grinding out a long night on the ambulance or running the smells and bells on the engine can lead to exhaustion.  A lot of departments have gotten so busy that they run split shifts, due to the call volume.


Now it's poll time. Let's take a poll of your own department and speak up about your shift schedule. I would like to hear how your department deals with the increasing call volume. Do you run 24 on, 48 off, 8 or 10 hours? If you are a volunteer fire department do you use a coverage plan? Speak up everyone and let's see how today's fire service deals with shifts in time.


Speak up everyone, its time to hear your voice.


Thanks for the visit to the jumpseat.