When to be an Outstanding Firefighter!

Now that your jumpseat is checked and ready and you have been training with your pack of air, you're ready to be a interior structural firefighter. But what if you arrive to find a well-involved lightweight wood-frame and your ordered to the front door? Well, we are under the direction of an officer and is it our place to second guess them? Maybe you should suggest to him, hey Cap' maybe we should be outstanding firefighters today, outside standing in the yard.

If you are faced with this situation I would recommend using the aero medical go no-go policy. When an aero medical aircraft is requested they evaluate the risk, weather, and chance for a safe return before launching their aircraft. While evaluating these risks they use a motto, "four to go and one to say no."  This means it takes the whole flight crew to agree to fly and the dispatcher must approve of the mission before leaving the ground. 

I think that slogan can be used in the fire service. A first-due officer has a lot of responsibilities to handle when arriving to a structure fire. Our job is to help ease the pressure by handling basic tasks while keeping a heads-up look at the situation. If you are ordered to the front door of this well-involved lightweight frame home maybe it's time to say no. Now we can't use this just because we don't want to be aggressive firefighters or are looking to take the easy road, this comment needs to be reserved for the "no win" fires.

Most officers make accurate and intelligent choices on the types of attacks they feel are safe. Right now it's not our place to make these decisions because we are riding backwards. But always keep in the back of your mind the slogan "one to say no!" There is nothing wrong with sometimes being outstanding firefighters, because when you are outside squirting water you're not risking your life!

Thanks for the visit to the jumpseat.

Be safe everyone!

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