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    Default Fire Ground Accountability

    Im in the process of revising my deparments accountability system, just wondering what everyone else does?
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    Each member gets two lamenated tags w/name,rank,station,pmh,blood type, and allergies,and emts have that listed. One tag is red and the other is white and each has a swivel klasp. the white tag goes to the driver and ids what truck your on and the red tag goes to accountability at the door. Our board has large rings that hold a team in a certain job(attack,backup,rehab,etc) and when the tags are connected all you have to do is remove one and place the whole team in another section. This is mounted on a tripod and is set up w/command.
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    Somehow hanging a tag on the crew is accountability? Didn't Seattle invent that tag system or least given credit for it and lose 4 with it? Year 2002 and we use cow tags. Seems maybe there needs to be a way to #1 know firefighters need help automatically, Pittsburg didn't call for help 3 LODDS, Houston Didn't call for help 3 LODDS, Lake Worth didn't call for help 3 LODDs, etc. #2 have a way to call for help other than a radio. Even FD's with radios didn't yell for help on LODDs. Grace is close as long as you open the box and turn it on and have an external gong and light everyone on the fire ground knows who is down by name withion 25 seconds. Of course someone will say we can't afford it. Can you afford the funerals? It is just part of doing the job professionally. So how do you track 5 dozen cow tags or 125? Got lots of extra people to do that? Have the clear radio frequencies too?
    Last edited by quintladder; 04-23-2002 at 05:23 PM.

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    We use a system similar to Shammrock54. One tag on the apparatus you ride in. Once the truck is at the scene, the driver collects those tags so he knows who was on the truck. Second tag goes to Accountability officer and gets clipped on with your assignment. Trucks don't leave the scene if the driver has a tag that he does not have the matching member for. It's very basic and simple, and it works for us. Having an accountablity system does not keep firefighters from being lost, it only lets you know who is missing. The best accountability system in the world won't keep anyone safe, if you are in the wrong spot at the wrong time, you will pay for it. Stay Safe.

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    Another typical LHS*/Quintladder/BlackB/7Tower/Mlentotha type of wisea** answer...it didn't take long for you to revert back to form, did it?

    The Brother just asked what everyone else is doing for an accountability system...and I noticed that you did not offer any information, just an insult to the Seattle FD.

    Not everyone can afford the Grace Industries GEM system. I saw the system at the Worcester Fire Safety Symposium... it is a nice system, but it still requires human beings to turn it on and program it. Firefighters can still die in the line of duty if they are wearing this system, unless you think that having a high tech system makes them immune to death and injury...news flash... it does not!

    For some departments, the tag system works out just fine.

    BGFD21...

    We use the tag system and a riding list for the on duty personnel. When we go on duty, our tags go on the rig. Any personnel that are recalled for an incident report to the person designated as the accountability officer and hands in his tag and is staged for deployment. Whenever the evacuation signal is sounded, the personnel report to their rigs for a roll call. At the end of an incident, there is a roll call, where the response is checked off and the firefighter gets his/her accountability tag back.

    It's not a perfect system...as long as humans are involved, nothing is perfect. What scares me is that there are some FD's who have no accountability system whatsoever..and that's what should be addressed!

    MOO!
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    Accountability doesn't preclude LODD's. It is one of many tools for mitigating our risks of such. No accountability system will guarantee that people won't die, nor will any turnout material, or radio system, or big red truck, or hose diameter, or TIC...

    You must use all the resources together to maximize your safety and minimize your risk, but the former is never 100% and the latter is never 0%.

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    "Whenever the evacuation signal is sounded, the personnel report to their rigs for a roll call."

    Cool how do you know someone is down?

    ""Whenever the evacuation signal is sounded, the personnel report to their rigs for a roll call."

    Ok let's all wait here till everyone gets here then will ask who si missing. yeah that's a good idea. How long can your guys hold their breathe? Isn't that what Houston used at McDonald's. Oh yeah the company officer eventually realized his guys weren't out only took what an hour to find them in a 3000 square foot McDonalds.

    "Whenever the evacuation signal is sounded, the personnel report to their rigs for a roll call."

    They could call on the radio, like PFD they simply forgot three times until unconcious.

    "Whenever the evacuation signal is sounded, the personnel report to their rigs for a roll call."

    So you sent them to the20th floor where do you lok when they don't come down? Ecery stairway and the 20th floor?

    "At the end of an incident, there is a roll call, where the response is checked off and the firefighter gets his/her accountability tag back."

    If he is there. Kinda like Houston's LODD 1 down and they find the firefighter during overhaul no one ever knew he was missing not even the company officer. Say 150 guys on scene you only need how much time?

    Admit it the system is a joke.

    "It's not a perfect system..."

    Duh,

    "as long as humans are involved, nothing is perfect."

    Especially systems with so little thought behind them

    "What scares me is that there are some FD's who have no accountability system whatsoever..and that's what should be addressed! "

    Let's wait for OSHA to take it over.

    Well history will never repeat itself and other people lessons could never apply here. Yeah, wing it with tags. Use 20 minute marcs and the lot, it makes it look like you really care.

    Call it what it is a Joke!!!

    Well this is America you can use anything you want, including your PASS< tag, radio, seat belt or air pack.

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    Looks like he found his way back. Let the games begin. Cap, I didnt catch that earlier, but looking back now it makes sense. I wonder if the brush truck he bragged about is the one called in on the 1000 alarm brush fire?
    Shawn M. Cecula
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    Last edited by quintladder on 04-23-2002 at 04:23 PM



    51 minutes after your initial post...your posts are like Viagra...you start off with a little "forum foreplay" wanting to screw around with people, then wait a while for you to get a rise from the "members"...

    There are many small FD's that are barely surviving as it is now. Fish frys and bake sales only go so far.

    Many of career FD's both large and small are looking at level funded budgets for FY 2003..the loaves and fishes syndrome....do we pay for equipment or personnel? Training or fire prevention?

    Corporate America, a usually reliable source of donations for FDs large and small are cutting back.

    The Grace system is a nice to have, but for now the tag system is what we have to deal with.

    Unless all of your potential mutual aid comnmunities have the system, it will only take care of accounting for your people...it won't do squat for the others.

    If you have an incident large enough to require tracking 5 dozen to 125 or more "cow tags", you are going to have the personnel to rope in the tags to keep track of the firefighter dogies...MOO!
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
    Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

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    Now to the topic at hand, we use a 2 tag system, One green, One Red, green tag is put on the apparatus, the red tag is for "hot zone" (i.e interior) work. The accountability officer is not to allow anyone inside the "hot zone" without a red tag. There is definitely room for improvement in the system we use, and some improvements are on the way. I like the idea of sector assignments.
    But, for right now that is what is working for us.
    Shawn M. Cecula
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    IACOJ Division of Fire and EMS

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    You know, there are a great number of things I don't agree with Larry's position or attitude on, but with accountability, how can you argue? I looked at quite a few of the LODD's quoted too and its a shame, but Larry is RIGHT the TRUTH is that we just LOSE firefighters in the building. The GEM system will cost about 120K to do 6 stations and about 120 SCBA with command modules and devices on each member, I feel its a worthwhile expense. Unfortunately its a major budget hit every year and getting six stations to agree on an expense like this is difficult. If we didn't do it across the board, our expense in command modules increases greatly, mainly due to the number of responses where either of the engines, the truck or rescue is the only apparatus due. Scott and others are starting to advertise the same device. Do you have some insight on them Larry? I'd really like to know. I think the ultimate is something that can pinpoint location and height (ie floor) Is there something available? Do we need all of our structures mapped or can a rescue team be equipped with a tracking device? This is something we definitely need. For all the talk about Fed grants and involvement, military research and development will probably give us exactly what we need. Getting it in our hands at a reasonable price is up to government. Look at the cost of TIC's before NJ bought one for every station? How cheap would they be now if our State didn't make them bid for so many cameras and force the price below 10K?

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    "Scott and others are starting to advertise the same device."

    Not ready for prime time yet, at least they wouldn't sell $600,000 buck worth this month when asked to.

    "Do you have some insight on them Larry?"

    Hopefully they figure it out soon.

    "I think the ultimate is something that can pinpoint location and height (ie floor) Is there something available?"

    Yes he TAOS system will do that easily.

    " Do we need all of our structures mapped"

    No

    "or can a rescue team be equipped with a tracking device?"

    Yes and theapparatus on scene has tohave them.

    :"This is something we definitely need."

    Yes.

    "For all the talk about Fed grants and involvement, military research and development will probably give us exactly what we need."

    I wrote a Federal Fire Grant forjust under $600,000 andgt it for accountability.

    "Getting it in our hands at a reasonable price is up to government."

    Current systems are about $1250 per guy. I think free enterprise will drop the price not the fed.

    For all the excuses about cost, there are hundreds if not thousands of places that could buy them today if they wanted to.

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    I am not sure who the person is that is slamming accountability and making a joke of it...but that was not the question here.

    What did someone mean..."he found his way back"

    No system is perfect and there will probably never be a perfect one.

    We use a system in my volunteer department that has a tag attached to your helmet. That tag says if you are interior qualified or exterior only. Different colors help to identify. When you respond it is hung on a ring in the pumper and is theoretically supposed to be at the command post. Does it always happen..no..certainly not.

    We in my old dept....used to use a pasport system that had the name of the apparatus on a tag and each person on the tag had a name panel. The panel was velcroed on the larger "pasport" and turned in to command on arrival. That tag was then put on the master board and moved around from place to place as you are assigned. Officers were white tags, firefighters were black tags and EMS only was blue. If a person stayed with the apparatus that tag went on the passport upside down. You also had spare tages on your helmet so if you arrived as not part of a crew you could be assigned to someone by giving them a spare tag. After completing an assignment a radio report went to command that Engine 2 had "completed assignment, all personnel accounted for, driver at the pumper". Seemed to work well and we practiced it in several large training session and intentionally lost people, but were able to determine who...and where they were last seen. The system takes managment though.

    However....now...here goes... I firmly believe that personnel accountability and safety are necessary, but they start way before any system is in place. Firefighters must be trained to be accountable and NOT FREELANCE on the fireground.
    09-11 .. 343 "All Gave Some..Some Gave ALL" God Bless..R.I.P.
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    Where can I find info on the TAOS system? Did a web search and checked some buyers guides and didn't see something like that listed. Is this an adapted system or marketed for fire-rescue?

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    We use the "color-coded tag on the apparatus system". It may not be the best system in the world, but it's what we've got because it's what we can afford.

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    My point exactly smfd232. We dont have the funding for a hi tech system, in fact we did are whole current system for,I believe, $100-150. Much easier to get left in the budget than an accountability system that the politicans wont understand and wont pay for.
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    All of you out there are idiots ... I can't believe you don't have the system that we have. Each of our firemen have had thermal imaging cameras surgically implanted into their corneas. So, everyone has a TIC. It costs about $1.5 Million per person. But, it's worth it.

    We also have a manned satellite which orbits the Earth so that we can track all of our firemen 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The crew in the satellite monitors their location, heart rate, BP, respiration, and sends random firefighting questions to them in the form of brain waves to constantly quiz them so that they may keep their skills sharp. We have two satellites so we can have a second one in orbit while the other one is coming back into the Earth's atmosphere. These two satellites only cost us $18 Billion.

    Next week, we're taking delivery on a four wheel drive quint/tower (it has two separate aerials) which seats 17 firemen plus a driver. It can flow 24,000 GPM out of a normal street puddle and can extinguish brush fires up to 1,000 alarms, or 10,000 acres, whichever comes first. There are 35 crosslays and it carries 180,000 feet of 5". It has a separate satellite mounted on the rear which can be launched into space on a moment's notice just in case the Russians blow up the regular satellite we have in orbit. This only cost $24 Million.

    The firefighting equipment and accountability devices you use are terrible. Get a clue and stop giving the fire service a bad name.

    But Stay Safe

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    Lots of talk about freelancing and what we can afford, 2 questions though. First, freelancing is an issue. Command has to know that his crews are working where they were assigned. But who calls for help when they can't? Heart attack, collapse, etc.. I'm more concerned about that. Crew integrity is **** poor in most departments. I see it in training and I see it in real life. Some companies in my area create "manpower pools" on working fires which completely dilute the concept of keeping the officer and his crew together. In training i see crews come out of the burn building an not realize they didn't have their whole company. In career departments there were a number of LODD's where an officer failed to account for his crew as well. The opinions expressed by many on these forums is that "I know whats best, officers and Chiefs should leave me alone to do my job". Its just that attitude that kills a guy when he gets lost an no one knew where he was. The other question involves tags and "it might not be the best, but its all we can afford". My vol company uses that too, as do most of the others in the area. It doesn't work here and it probably doesn't work for you. IF everyone was diligent in their assignments and using the tags, how long would it take you to evacuate, roll call, discover who is missing, guess where they are and get back in to rescue them? I'm thinking maybe a few seconds longer than the 6 minutes they can go without O2.

    As far as I'm concerned spending 150 bucks total on a system to track your firefighters is nothing to be proud of. I know the systems are too expensive now, but so were TIC's a few years ago. We should lobby our governments that electronic accountability is of equal or greater importance to firefighter safety

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    PA Volunteer:

    There are 35 crosslays and it carries 180,000 feet of 5".
    I think you need to add some 8", 10", and 12" also.

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    Originally posted by Bones
    I think you need to add some 8", 10", and 12" also. [/B]
    We carry that on our utility truck. I forgot to mention that the utility (called a tractor trailer in some parts of the country) carries all of the XLDH and XXLDH. It also carries the tools necessary to install underground water mains out into the desert if need be. It's all a "turn key" operation.

    Thank you for pointing that out.

    Stay Safe

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    Contact Cranberry Township Fire Department in Butler County, PA. They go out and teach a two tag system to PA depts. I believe their course is now accepted by the PA Fire Academy. We use their system and it work well for us.
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    A part of the accountability system that hasn't been discussed is the buddy system.
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    ,,,,,A part of the accountability system that hasn't been discussed is the buddy system."

    Let's talk about it, it didn;t seem to help the guys in Chesapeek, Pittsburgh, Seattle, New York (highrises), Houston, Syracuse, etc, etc, etc

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    Default Ignore him

    Larry, you are a sh*twad of the highest order. Nobody wants to read your heartless posts around here.

    NOBODY.

    Stop coming back. We sniff you out every time. Go away and stay gone.

    If you were a true firefighter in your heart, you would not do as you have been in this & the high-rise thread--literally take in vain the name of literally hundreds of brothers who died being far better firefighters than you. There are mistakes and miscalculations involved in many LODD's, but there is a right way and a wrong way to discuss them.

    Right way: With careful thought, thorough analysis, and a respectful tone.

    Wrong way: Larry's way.

    Go away.

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    I see Larry has been banned again!

    I still say that each department has to have a system that works for them and use it. No matter what it is.. No system will be perfect. I have heard of places where you sign in when you arrive...Simple...and stoneage...but...if it works..why not?

    Also...I still contend that accountability is a direct result of attitude and that is the first step. The second it to stop FREELANCING. Those are our biggest obstacles.
    09-11 .. 343 "All Gave Some..Some Gave ALL" God Bless..R.I.P.
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