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    Default whats the average cal fire calls per 72 hour shift?

    Was Just curious whats the average call rate a Cal fire station gets per 72 hour shift? I know it varies depending on where you work. Hopefully a Cal fire firefighter can answer This question or a former calfire ff thanks! !

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    Who on gods earth is working a 72 hour shift??

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    You'd be surprised what they do on the left coast. 3 & 4...4 & 5.
    I'm sure someone here will explain it.

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    The paid ambulance service which covers sevaral parishes to my east, which runs both EMS and non-EMS calls, has 72-hour shifts w/ 5 days off between shifts.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    The paid ambulance service which covers sevaral parishes to my east, which runs both EMS and non-EMS calls, has 72-hour shifts w/ 5 days off between shifts.
    While clearly not on topic with the OP, it's sheer lunacy that we have agencies working their personnel on 72 hour shifts. The only way I could see it is if the agency only runs a call or two a shift or has some method to guarantee a minimum sleep time. Line personnel and fire chiefs both need to remember they can be held personally liable if they have a fatigued driver behind the wheel of an engine or ambulance that is subsequently involved in an accident that can be tied to that fatigue.

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    I'd love to work 48's like our west coast brothers, but mandatory 72's is too much.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chief_Roy View Post
    While clearly not on topic with the OP, it's sheer lunacy that we have agencies working their personnel on 72 hour shifts. The only way I could see it is if the agency only runs a call or two a shift or has some method to guarantee a minimum sleep time. Line personnel and fire chiefs both need to remember they can be held personally liable if they have a fatigued driver behind the wheel of an engine or ambulance that is subsequently involved in an accident that can be tied to that fatigue.
    As a rule, they run between 10-14 calls in that 72 hours. They have run, according to the folks that choose to work a 72 as many as 20-24 in that time period.

    I personally agree that 72 hiours is simply to long to be on duty without a break, but they do give the employees that option.

    There have been several times that our career fire personnel have worked thier regular 24 here on the fire side, then worked a 24 for the parish EMS service, then turned around and worked thier regular 24-hour fire shift.

    I fully agree that it's probably not a smart idea.
    Last edited by LaFireEducator; 01-03-2012 at 06:52 PM.
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    I've heard of folks working a 24-on/24-off schedule doing shift swaps and working 72 as a result. Not terribly common, but it happens.
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    I thought FLSA laws capped the max number of hours working in a row at 48 hours (during non-emergency operations)?

    Who in their right minds would want to work a 72 hour shift. I even question the work performance on 48s compared to 24s or even 10/14s.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoxAlarm187 View Post
    I'd love to work 48's like our west coast brothers, but mandatory 72's is too much.
    48-96 here. Been doing it for about 12 years now. It's nice. If I have to work a payback, or overtime, it's not too bad depending on the station.

    I'm not 100% on this happening now,but Cal-Fire used to work their seasonal FF's 96-72. That's 4 days on, 3 days off. They are one of the worst abusers of a young persons desire to become a career firefighter. Dangling the golden carrot in your face until you either give up, get hired, or go somewhere else.

    That is no reflection on the fine firefighters that work there.
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    Quote Originally Posted by RFD21C View Post
    I thought FLSA laws capped the max number of hours working in a row at 48 hours (during non-emergency operations)?

    Who in their right minds would want to work a 72 hour shift. I even question the work performance on 48s compared to 24s or even 10/14s.
    I can do 48's standing on my head. Most captains know when their guys are beat up, they are too. A good BC will leave you alone on day two as well. Fatigue hasn't been an issue here, and we can get pretty busy.
    There also has been a sharp decline in sick leave and no noticeable difference either way in injuries.
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    Snowball how many calls are you all running on a typical 48? Are most of your calls daytime or nighttime calls? Do you all change the work day on the 2nd day of the 48?

    I am just trying to wrap my head around working that long of a period of time. What happens when you run 4-6 calls in the time period of 0000 hrs to 0700 hrs. how do you all change things to reflect the lack of sleep for the 2nd 24?

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    I'm curious too. If you have a rough first 24, are you stuck during the second 24 doing inspections, tours, training, and other misc. day time activities. Sure 48s are doable, but it sure doesn't help our argument of "this is a skilled profession that takes mental and physical abilities", while every other skilled profession is doing more and more to cut down on extended work periods.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RFD21C View Post
    Snowball how many calls are you all running on a typical 48? Are most of your calls daytime or nighttime calls? Do you all change the work day on the 2nd day of the 48?

    I am just trying to wrap my head around working that long of a period of time. What happens when you run 4-6 calls in the time period of 0000 hrs to 0700 hrs. how do you all change things to reflect the lack of sleep for the 2nd 24?
    The calls vary. Last tour we hit 30 calls in 48 hours. If I was to hit an average, I'd say 12 at my house. Shift change is at 0800. For example, I go in Thursday morning, I get relieved at 0800 Saturday morning. If we get hammered at night, some guys will sleep in past the 0700 wake up/bell test. Most are at the table for 0800 line up. I tend to wake early, so I'll get up and make a pot of laxative...you know.

    We will get our daily duties knocked out, p/t, shopping, then it's time for lunch. Take an hour to hour and a half snooze if we can, then we're good to go. On multi company drill days, our training division is really good about scheduling it for the first day, so day two will be open.

    Hydrants are divided up and my shift has about ten per day done twice a year. Wet season (spring summer) and dry season (fall winter). Most crews knock out a few extra for those days when you can't get them all in, kinda like a buffer.

    We don't do inspections, we used to. Long story, we might get those back.

    I will say that when this schedule was proposed and voted on by the body, a two year trial period only passed 51% to 49%. When it was voted on to keep the 48-96 or go back to the 24-48, it passed by more than 90% in favor of the 48.
    Sick leave has decreased exponentially, and guys are saving gas traveling to and from work half as much.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tree68 View Post
    I've heard of folks working a 24-on/24-off schedule doing shift swaps and working 72 as a result. Not terribly common, but it happens.
    Quote Originally Posted by snowball View Post
    Most captains know when their guys are beat up, they are too. A good BC will leave you alone on day two as well. Fatigue hasn't been an issue here, and we can get pretty busy.
    There also has been a sharp decline in sick leave and no noticeable difference either way in injuries.
    When I was a Federal FF working 24/24 and had a 135 mile one-way drive I would work 72's (via swap) all the time; there were several of us that did it in fact. Never had a problem with fatigue, and we even covered watches. And the bosses let us alone, and in fact even turned their heads if we dissappeared into the bunk room (during the day) to take a nap if it was necessary (very rare.)

    Union contract lmited us to 72 without a 24hr break.
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    We run the 48/96 and have done it for almost 20 years. I run my shifts similar to how Snowball described, the main difference is we don't do Hydrant Inspections, the Water Contractor does them. In place of Hydrant Inspections though, we do Sprinkler Inspections and depending on the month for our Company they vary from 3-7 for the month.

    I've worked 24 on 24 off, 48 on 48 off with a Kelly Day, 8 hr shifts, 12 hr shifts, 24 on 24 off with a 4 and 6 day off cycle and the 48/96 is by far the best schedule of all of them. For busy houses, yeah you're gonna have some sleepy days but that is where Management needs to do whats "right" and not assign them "mindless tasks" and such. For my Battalion, if we're tired as long as our B.C. is kept in the loop of why we're still in our bunks then if "The Man" asks questions he's got answers and all is good. I work out of our busiest house, varies on how many calls in a 48 hr Tour from 3-20-30 (for our Shift, which for the last few years we've been the busiest Shift for calls).

    My favorite is I know that when I come home and I'm super tired (after a 1 hr 25 min drive) I sleep for part of my 1st day off and I still have 3 more days with my family. Opposed to when I was working 24s I would sleep part of the day then go back to work the next day. I felt like I was always at work until a 4 or 6 day break. On this schedule, I feel like I'm at home way more than work... The only down fall to the schedule are holidays; you may end-up working the same holiday for 2 or 3 years but then your off that holiday for 5 or 6 yrs, so it's all good.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FWDbuff View Post
    When I was a Federal FF working 24/24 and had a 135 mile one-way drive I would work 72's (via swap) all the time; there were several of us that did it in fact. Never had a problem with fatigue, and we even covered watches. And the bosses let us alone, and in fact even turned their heads if we dissappeared into the bunk room (during the day) to take a nap if it was necessary (very rare.)

    Union contract lmited us to 72 without a 24hr break.
    Our current CBA states that the only time we have to be relieved is during Strike Teams. We are relieved after 14 days, doesn't matter if it's "In County" or "Out of County". The State and the Feds have work/rest ratios so we fall under that when we're assigned to their incidents.
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    Quote Originally Posted by chongo84 View Post
    Was Just curious whats the average call rate a Cal fire station gets per 72 hour shift? I know it varies depending on where you work. Hopefully a Cal fire firefighter can answer This question or a former calfire ff thanks! !
    As far as your original question, I just attended a FF Survival Class down at the Riverside County Training Center (Riverside County/Cal Fire) training site and talked to a lot of their personnel. It obviously varies from Ranger Unit to Ranger Unit I know the local Cal Fire Station might run 3-5 calls with the County during the Fire Season. Off Season, they'll run T/C and F/S but that's about all so they may run 3-5 a month. Opposed to Riverside County Ranger Unit, they have some Stations that routinely run 15-40 calls per 3 days. I'm not too familiar with Nor Cal, but the Stations I do know (Tehama County) are fairly slow and are contracts with small cities. I hope this sheds some light on how busy they are or could be.
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