A member of my small volunteer engine company has an attention disorder. Does any other officer have a member with an attention disorder or other challenge that may affect fireground activities? If so, what have you done? Limited his or her duties? Expelled the member? Compelled the member to seek treatment? What did you do? Did it work? Encounter any problems? Thank you!
I personally know of no reason for someone with ADD to be disqualified from duty. There is no evidence to support dismissal or reducing roles. I know a couple of firefighters, including one who has shot up the ranks of a paid department, who function very well.
I want to thank everyone for taking time to send e-mails sharing their experiences and opinions on this issue. To answer everyone's question: yes, the member's impaired concentration and distractibility has caused many difficulties on the fireground; but no, we're not looking for ways to terminate his volunteer service. What we ARE looking for is information on your experiences; what actions you took - if any - and etc... Thanks again!
If you know the members limits please take a little extra time and perfect his jobs and duty's by training one on one(sounds like alot of work but it WILL pay off later)and help him know them, and as time goes on try to expand his duty's. I say this with exp. I have a member that is sometimes easy to get distracted or forgets what their duty is. First remember safety: self, fellow FF's, public, and property. If at a scene the member has problems then keep cool and redirect them or sit them down (put them out of service) next to pump operator if possible. Maybe make up a card they could use as a refrence. <Just a note here> I've seen alot of firefighters get distracted but they get refocused fast. Some members are slower than others. God has gave you and your department this challenge for a reason (not for you to know) but for all to answer and help. I can talk for ever about helping this member and ease your thinking but maybe on a more private one on one so please e-mail me if you want more input.