We are having difficulties with the direction of the NFPA in standard 1710. Any comments from you would be helpful. Thanks
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Thread: NFPA 1710
01-04-2001, 09:40 AM #1Gene TaylorFirehouse.com Guest
01-12-2001, 05:02 PM #2ADSN/WFLDFirehouse.com Guest
Too many departments leave out important fireground functions and blame it on manpower shortages. Many of these functions have a direct relationship on firefighter safety. The impression I get when I read 1710 is that the NFPA wants to ensure that all of the basics are covered.
Realistic? not for many departments. The standard is the ideal not a minimum that we should all achieve then strive for more.
Take a look at the 2 in 2 out rule. How many departments refuse to deal with it. I know of more than one officer that has stated that they would NOT follow the mandate. Because as a firefighter he couldn't sit by and watch a structure burn while waiting for back up. Instead of fighting it, shouldn't we look for ways to comply and do our job?
As I'm sure you are aware, fire departments don't like to be told how to do things or how to run their fires. Imagine if the NFPA made a standard that said that every department must utilize a reverse lay. Could you picture the comments made?
I don't think anyone should adopt this standard into law, but we should all strive to achieve or exceed it. If that means calling auto aid earlier, then do it. Too many departments are afraid to call on their neighbors to help. If a neighboring department beats you to your fire and extinguishes it, is that really that bad. Does it go against your mission statement? When your elected officials ask "why?", TELL THEM. (they are full time and we are not, their station is closer, we were out on an ambulance assist...) To often we BS our mayor or city manager into thinking we can handle everything, and we can't always. Chief Dunn made this statement about highrise fires in a recent article: "A fully involved, free burning 20,000 square foot floor area can not be extinguished by a couple of firefighters spraying a hosestream from a stairway. City managers and department chiefs will not admit this to the public if they want to keep their jobs." How many times do we have the guts to tell someone that?
Perhaps 1710 could be the catalyst for change. Possibly the battle cry of the 21st century should be "put up or shut up" If you don't give us the manpower, and equipment to comply then we aren't going in. I don't personally want to see us stop entering buildings on fire. But if firefighters lives would be saved then that may be the direction we should take.
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