We are a volunteer department, with 25 members, that deals mainly with rescue-type calls. Any suggestions on creating an RIT?
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Thread: Creating an RIT
05-30-2000, 09:09 AM #1fyrmedikFirehouse.com Guest
Creating an RIT
05-30-2000, 01:05 PM #2FFTrainerFirehouse.com Guest
What are you looking to accomplish by establishing a team? Other than the obvious which is to help our own, are you looking for a way to boost number of calls? Do you frequently call on mutual aid for services in other areas and are looking for a way to give something back?
When we made the decision to establish our team, those were some of the things we stated as justification. One of our other reasons was the that we(and some mutual aid towns) were not entirely satisfied with the level that RIT was being offered by other teams we would need to use. We wanted to form a team that would be well trained, have the right equipment and act in a professional manner. I'm not saying that others weren't but there was just something left to be desired so we made the move.
All that being said, we're back to your reason. If you are looking to offer a service to mutual aid, then go for it and establish your team in a way that you would want a team to be prepared if coming for you. Based on your statement that you have 25 members, you will probably not be able to go for it all in one shot, but before you spend the money on equipment, spend it on training. My personal feeling is that all the money in the world can be spent on tools and equipment, but if the training is not there beside it, then you are still no further ahead of the game, however you may be more dangerous. I don't know about you, but I would take the team with the training and the experience and minimal tools over the team with every tool and minimal training anytime.(I just looked back at your post and see you state that you do mostly rescue work so you may be pretty well equipped as far as tools go so get training standards outlined first)
You also need to take a look at who would be qualified to be a team member. If you only have 25 members, can your staffing accomodate requests for a team at anytime? We have 22 members RIT(actually FAST) certified and it is still tough during those daytime runs.
Go for it and see how things start to fall out in the design/planning stage. Keep posting back here as more things come up. We only put our team into service in the last 6 months so the design and implementation concepts are fresh to be passed on.
06-12-2000, 10:36 AM #3FFD#35Firehouse.com Guest
Why not train every member for RIT assignments ? It is great knowledge for every Firefighter to know.
06-12-2000, 12:41 PM #4FFTrainerFirehouse.com Guest
Agreed with training everyone. The basis of RIT training is FF Safety and Survival which we can never get enough of.
My question was with only 25 members even if you train everyone, can a team still be gathered when the call comes in at 13:30 in the afternoon?
06-12-2000, 03:09 PM #5E229LtFirehouse.com Guest
My personal opinion is RIT teams should be from mutual aid calls. The use of our own members for RIT depletes our IC's forces. It also increases the likelyhood of these members being put to work in other areas, due to lack of manpower.
Talk to your surrounding departments and set up a mutual aid program for RIT. I did this in my area and it has worked for all involved.
06-14-2000, 07:56 AM #6sarge552Firehouse.com Guest
As E229lt stated, use a mutual aid company if at all possible. Our county is in the process of training a team from each of the fire depts. in the county then if it is needed you call in the closest RIT team to the scene, while not depleting your manpower and causing extra chaos on the fireground, it gives you fresh people coming in and allows the initial companies to do the task at hand and if something should arise there are qualified people waiting to go in with a plan.
06-14-2000, 10:50 PM #7LooperFirehouse.com Guest
We tried to develope a RIT mutual aid system, where a mutual aid engine (min. 4 man crew) would be automatically dispached on all confirmed (i.e. multiple calls, member on scene, ect) structure fires. The RIT would stage their aparatus and use their own tools & equipment (except ladders). As soon as the fire was under control, the RIT company would be released.
We met with resistance from some of the neighboring depts who don't seem to grasp the importance of the RIT and who didn't want to "put another truck on the road". For now, we are using our own personnel for the RIT at our fires.
06-15-2000, 08:38 AM #8CHFD126Firehouse.com Guest
One thing that was brought up during my New York State FAST training was the use of a mutual aid team. Aside from the fact that it helps with the home dept's manpower, it helps to diminish the personal factor. If one of your own members goes down, you are more likely to not keep a level head, as you recall things like what happens to his wife and kids if we can't find him, etc. It sounds cruel, but a FAST member from another dept. with less personal involvement may be better able to withdraw himself from the situation and handle the task at hand.
06-16-2000, 08:49 AM #9FFTrainerFirehouse.com Guest
It seems the majority opinion here is that RIT/FAST should be a mutual aid job. I will agree with that 110%. We will never do RIT for ourselves, we will always call mutual aid to handle and they will always call us. A FF down is still personal since it is a FF Brother/Sister, but if you compound that by it being someone out of your own station, you're asking for trouble. Based on human nature, a FF will generally do more for a friend(fellow station member) and tend to have a tunnel vision view. When trying to find/rescue a down FF, you need the broadest vision possible, there is NO room for tunnel vision. You need to be monitoring every single thing going on with the job since so that you can perform the duty you are their for and also avoid being the next one down.
In my original post on this subject, I posed the question of what was looking to be accomplished. I think that based on replies to date, that FYRMEDIK should be looking at creating the team as a service to mutual aid depts. If you're looking for a way to boost the number of calls you run, the two will go hand and hand.
06-16-2000, 09:02 AM #10FSRIZZIOFirehouse.com Guest
Good post, you guys got me thinking about this. I have people interested in forming a team, the automatic/mutual aid view is interesting. I'll have to fish around and see if I can make it work here.
Be safe, Frank
06-16-2000, 09:35 PM #11fyrmedikFirehouse.com Guest
Thanks for the input. There original idea for the RIT was to offer the service as mutual aid to other areas. Not our own. We just don't have the manpower to do it for ourselves. As I said before, we are largely a rescue company, and are looking to branch out into other areas of service (tech rescue, collapse rescue, etc.)
07-12-2000, 11:36 AM #12HVORSEFirehouse.com Guest
RIT is the most important training anyone can ever recieve. I was in awe at how important of a job we are asked to do. When I had my RIT training, and we learned about how so many firefighters died due to the lack of a RIT team being put into action. I still have to fight with our Chief officers to keep our program going, they feel that this manpower is wasted, and these people who are just "standing around" could be put to better use on the fire ground. Fight, fight, fight. I will not risk the life of a fellow firefighter. Train, and train, and then train some more. We can never train enough for what we may have to face. I would rather suffer a little pain now, sore muscles, scrapes, heat stress,and all that comes with it, than suffer the loss of a fellow firefighter.
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