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Thread: Whats happening here????

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    Default Whats happening here????

    Just wondering people's thoughts on why we as a firefighting society have lost sight of the important things? The basics I mean. It seems to me every day someone comes out with a new tool, or toy or way to do something... What happened to the days of guys venting and going in with a hand line to the seat of the fire?

    Why are we so technologically oriented when we should be looking at why there are still 100+ firefighters being killed in the line of duty from the SAME things?

    Just wondering if anyone out there shares my view of where we are and where are are headed...

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    Quote Originally Posted by rescue1man View Post
    Just wondering people's thoughts on why we as a firefighting society have lost sight of the important things? The basics I mean. It seems to me every day someone comes out with a new tool, or toy or way to do something... What happened to the days of guys venting and going in with a hand line to the seat of the fire?

    Why are we so technologically oriented when we should be looking at why there are still 100+ firefighters being killed in the line of duty from the SAME things?

    Just wondering if anyone out there shares my view of where we are and where are are headed...
    Funny you should mention this topic. Out in the boonies where I live I am the training officer for 2 POC FDs and I have gone back to basics. Forcible entry, ladders, hydrant hookups, stretching attack lines, transition from a deluge Blitz attack to a handline attack, search and rescue, ventilation, and scenario based trainings to put it all together.

    New technology, TICs for example are fantastic, but good sound basic skills, reading buildings, knowing when to go and when not to, how to do a strong offensive interior attack, and more are still vital to the fire service and to trying hard to keep our brothers and Sisters alive.

    My Captain at my career FD spends hours upon hours with us working on RIT and save yourself techniques and skills. We do kitchen table video training on size up and first in reports. The thing he stesses in keep your eyes open, your head in the game, and the odds of becoming trapped are much lower.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rescue1man View Post
    ...Why are we so technologically oriented when we should be looking at why there are still 100+ firefighters being killed in the line of duty from the SAME things? ...
    Maybe the lack of embracing technology is why 100+ are still being killed....

    Maybe too much of "that's the way we always did it" is why 100+ are still being killed....

    Just sayin
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    Quote Originally Posted by rescue1man View Post
    Just wondering people's thoughts on why we as a firefighting society have lost sight of the important things? The basics I mean. It seems to me every day someone comes out with a new tool, or toy or way to do something... What happened to the days of guys venting and going in with a hand line to the seat of the fire?
    It's alive and well in my department.


    Why are we so technologically oriented when we should be looking at why there are still 100+ firefighters being killed in the line of duty from the SAME things?
    I think you're kind of relating two things that aren't necessarily related.

    I think there's two primary reason for the fire service becoming "technologically oriented" as you put it. First it has to do with the people entering the fire service over the past 5-10 years. Unlike their predecessors, the "new generation" of firefighters were raised on technology so they will naturally be more receptive to new technologies. Second, the world in general is becoming more "technologically oriented", so it would stand to reason that the fire service would follow suit to some extent.


    I don't necessarily think that the development of new technology is distracting our attention from the causes of LODDs. As you mentioned, a lot of it is due to the same causes. As such, we kind of know the causes and we already know the remedies, but not all of us are putting those corrective measures into action. We know "bad driving" and being "out of shape" can lead to injury or death. We know driving "smarter", exercising and eating better are the primary solutions, but we're having a hard time getting there.

    Additionally, when you look at the annual LODD numbers from a historical perspective, it looks like we aren't necessarily making much "progress", although the past 2 years have been favorable statistically. However, you have to consider a couple of other factors. First, the criteria for what is a LODD has changed over the years and now is including deaths that occur after we've left the firehouse. I think as we've made some progress related to on scene LODDs, we've replaced them with deaths that previously weren't considered LODDs and thus we don't see a net reduction of LODDs.

    Second, LODD numbers only provide a part of the picture. To really get a true picture of where we stand, line of duty injuries have to be considered. We have far more of these per year and I think looking at the trends within this category in conjunction with the LODD information would provide a much better picture of where we are at.

    Third, I think you need to consider current working conditions. Let's face it, the vast majority of us are probably working with less personnel and/or resources than what we were 10-20 years ago. Understaffing has been proven to contribute to increased line of duty injuries and while it may seem simple to just "do less with less", the reality is we can't always do that.


    Additionally, work is being done to search for why firefighters die. The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (Pittsburgh, PA) has been conducting some pretty in depth research the past couple of years related to firefighter health and rehab. I was fortunate to be able to participate in one of the studies last year. One of the "surprise" findings in the study so far related to the effects of increased core temps. Basically, they found that as core temperature increased, the platelets in our blood become "stickier" and as they bump into each other they stick together. The working theory is that these "clumps" of platelets reach a "narrowing" in the circulatory system that single platelets normally can pass thru, but the "clumps" can't get thru and thus restricts circulation and could be contributing to the "unexplained" heart attacks and strokes in seemingly healthy firefighters. As such, the belief is the faster we cool down after a work cycle, the quicker the platelets lose their "stick" and the better our chances of not falling ill.

    It's pretty interesting and informative stuff. Here's a link to their website - www.firefighterresearch.org

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42 View Post
    Maybe the lack of embracing technology is why 100+ are still being killed....

    Maybe too much of "that's the way we always did it" is why 100+ are still being killed....

    Just sayin
    There is no amount of technology available that will force you to push away from the dinner table and practice basic firefighter skills.
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    Lucky hit - I found these stats on the first try.

    While it takes some cross-comparisons, one can derive that perhaps a third of our LODDs over the past few years are actually due to hands-on firefighting - ie, people putting the wet stuff on the red stuff in a hostile environment.

    The other two thirds of the LODDs would not be prevented by table-top exercises involving fireground activities. In fact, 10% actually involved training.

    As FireMedic's post indicates, we need to be smarter - but in ways we may not currently consider. The core temperature item is telling, and a direct contradiction to the "rehab is for sissies" mantra. Medical screening on return to station may become a norm - CO levels, core temperature, etc. Cyanokits are already the norm for smoke inhalation patients in Europe (where the kits cost 1/10 of what they cost here), and their use has provided measurable success in the survivability of smoke inhalation patients.

    That we lose 10-15% of our people in traffic incidents is another area of concern. Many, if not most, are preventable. Some of those kitchen table exercises should concern defensive driving. Ten FDNY members just went to the hospital following a collision between two apparatus responding to the same alarm. One of them had to have had a stop sign or red light.

    We should absolutely be smart and well-drilled in the basics - but that's only 1/3 of our problem. We have to address the other 2/3 as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rescue1man View Post
    Just wondering people's thoughts on why we as a firefighting society have lost sight of the important things? The basics I mean. It seems to me every day someone comes out with a new tool, or toy or way to do something... What happened to the days of guys venting and going in with a hand line to the seat of the fire?

    Why are we so technologically oriented when we should be looking at why there are still 100+ firefighters being killed in the line of duty from the SAME things?

    Just wondering if anyone out there shares my view of where we are and where are are headed...
    Well, despite increased knowledge and better apparatus and tools, we still have a few depts that bitch about "Safety Sams". PG, I'm looking at you. (Or at least some of you)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42 View Post
    Maybe the lack of embracing technology is why 100+ are still being killed....

    Maybe too much of "that's the way we always did it" is why 100+ are still being killed....

    Just sayin
    [SIZE=3]
    I don't think the lack of embracing technology is as much a problen as depending on it too much is. Many younger FF's are more concerned with learning the "tricks of the trade" than learning the art of the trade. Depending on a TIC then having it crap out can have serious problems if guys don't know or remember the basics of interior search (stay oriented, get to a wall to find a window or door, etc). Also depending on a Rabbit Tool, which even though rare, having it malfunction can prevent a hasty evacuation if conditions turn bad. I feel there needs to be a mix of new technology and tried and true methods.

    On a different note. I hope you made out Ok from the storm. I went with a friend to Seaside Heights to help do some salvage the other day. Tough times ahead....Good luck my Brother./SIZE]

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    len1582, firehouse had 2 1/2-3 feet of water throughout. We got our trucks out, we got most of our gear out. Lost generator, compressor, and records dating back to 1885. Whole building gutted now. Personally, my house was fine. Not so for many friends. Will be a long time rebuilding everything.


    And I agree, depending too much on technology will be just as bad as ignoring it entirely. Need a good balance of both.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnsb View Post
    Well, despite increased knowledge and better apparatus and tools, we still have a few depts that bitch about "Safety Sams". PG, I'm looking at you. (Or at least some of you)
    Stop watching you tube videos from here and perhaps you'll sleep better.

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnsb View Post
    Well, despite increased knowledge and better apparatus and tools, we still have a few depts that bitch about "Safety Sams". PG, I'm looking at you. (Or at least some of you)
    Firemen bitch about "safety sams" when they advocate abdicating our duties and letting civilians die because they don't want to risk messing up their hair. I read more articles looking for way to tell ourselves that people are dead or dieing inside so we can tell ourselves not going in was "ok". They'd rather train on that, than how to competently operate in a burning building and get the trapped occupant(s) out. I'm all for safety and being alive at the end of the shift, I'm just not into letting civilians be injured or killed to do it.

    Len is right, technology is good, but we can't depend on it. Some guys couldn't even get the truck to the front door if the GPS went out. We can't let technology replace our skills.

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    I sleep just fine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nameless View Post
    Firemen bitch about "safety sams" when they advocate abdicating our duties and letting civilians die because they don't want to risk messing up their hair. I read more articles looking for way to tell ourselves that people are dead or dieing inside so we can tell ourselves not going in was "ok". They'd rather train on that, than how to competently operate in a burning building and get the trapped occupant(s) out. I'm all for safety and being alive at the end of the shift, I'm just not into letting civilians be injured or killed to do it.

    Len is right, technology is good, but we can't depend on it. Some guys couldn't even get the truck to the front door if the GPS went out. We can't let technology replace our skills.
    I'm with you. I'm talking about the guys that do obviously stupid things, and then act like they're bad-@$$ess and the best thing that ever happened to the fireservice. I got over having dirty turnouts years ago. You can't drink beer in the burn ward.

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnsb View Post
    I'm with you. I'm talking about the guys that do obviously stupid things, and then act like they're bad-@$$ess and the best thing that ever happened to the fireservice. I got over having dirty turnouts years ago. You can't drink beer in the burn ward.
    Yeah, I would say there is a middle ground in safety we should look for that lies between "The house is on fire, we can't go inside!" and "SCBAs are for little girls, real men breath smoke."

    It's just that, like politics, you usually only hear stuff from the two extremes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42 View Post
    Maybe the lack of embracing technology is why 100+ are still being killed....

    Maybe too much of "that's the way we always did it" is why 100+ are still being killed....

    Just sayin
    100 a year aren't being killed.

    Maybe 20-30 a year are being killed.

    Most of the rest are dying. There's a difference.

    We could cut the number of LODDs by at least 30% tomorrow- stop counting 75 year old guys who stroke out 20 hours after they directed traffic at an MVA for 15 minutes.

    Wearing a seatbelt 100% of the time, not driving like a moron, getting a yearly physical, spending some time in the gym, and going on a collective diet would take care of most of the rest.
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    Quote Originally Posted by nameless View Post
    Firemen bitch about "safety sams" when they advocate abdicating our duties and letting civilians die because they don't want to risk messing up their hair. I read more articles looking for way to tell ourselves that people are dead or dieing inside so we can tell ourselves not going in was "ok". They'd rather train on that, than how to competently operate in a burning building and get the trapped occupant(s) out. I'm all for safety and being alive at the end of the shift, I'm just not into letting civilians be injured or killed to do it.

    Len is right, technology is good, but we can't depend on it. Some guys couldn't even get the truck to the front door if the GPS went out. We can't let technology replace our skills.

    Well Said !

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    Quote Originally Posted by emt161 View Post
    100 a year aren't being killed.

    Maybe 20-30 a year are being killed.

    Most of the rest are dying. There's a difference.

    We could cut the number of LODDs by at least 30% tomorrow- stop counting 75 year old guys who stroke out 20 hours after they directed traffic at an MVA for 15 minutes.

    Wearing a seatbelt 100% of the time, not driving like a moron, getting a yearly physical, spending some time in the gym, and going on a collective diet would take care of most of the rest.
    This^ Well said sir'
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    Quote Originally Posted by emt161 View Post
    100 a year aren't being killed.

    Maybe 20-30 a year are being killed.

    Most of the rest are dying. There's a difference.

    We could cut the number of LODDs by at least 30% tomorrow- stop counting 75 year old guys who stroke out 20 hours after they directed traffic at an MVA for 15 minutes.

    Wearing a seatbelt 100% of the time, not driving like a moron, getting a yearly physical, spending some time in the gym, and going on a collective diet would take care of most of the rest.
    Difference? Yes. Still too many....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42 View Post
    Difference? Yes. Still too many....
    I don't disagree - one would be too many, but given the nature of our business, there are still going to be those times whe despite our best efforts, things are going to go "south." An unknown 500 lb propane tank, some missing structural members, a speeding semi - things we don't know about until it's too late.

    So LODDs won't go away until fires (and human interaction) go away.

    In the meantime, let's learn from the mistakes that have been made and resolve not to make them again, be they properly reading a fire situation, setting up for an MVA on a highway, or driving in a reasonably safe and sane manner.

    An area that seems to be experiencing growth is the folks who return from an incident and keel over. I'm not talking about the 75YO fire policeman - I'm talking about the line firefighter. Either we're simply becoming more aware of when they do happen, or the numbers are increasing.
    Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

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