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  1. #1
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    Default Battalion Chief roles & responsibilities

    Our department is in the process of forming battalions. The battalion chiefs will be appointed in the near future. I need some help on this matter from anyone who would like to send me their job descriptions and/or the roles of the BC's. Also, does your BC's have other duties besides the normal administrative/responding to alarm duties? Do they head up fire prevention, PR, special ops etc.?
    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Ed


  2. #2
    Forum Member DeputyChiefGonzo's Avatar
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    Default

    We don't have battalion chiefs, we have Deputy Chiefs, one per group. They work the same 10 and 14 schedule that we do. In addition to being the shift commander, each deputy has a portion of the FD administrative duties to cover. Their radio designations are D1 through D4.

    D1 is in charge of fire prevention and inspection reports. Inspections are done by the in service companies.

    D2 is in charge of equipment and apparatus.

    D3 is in charge of training. Training schedules are delegated to thecompany officers.

    D4 is in charge of fire alarm and communications.

    The system isn't perfect...we really sohuld have additional personnel dedicated to the day to day operations, fire prevention and training, but when it comes to $$$, the politicians think with the wallets and not their heads!

    Using the span of control theory...
    The Battalion and Deputy Chiefs oversee the company officers, but should allow the company officer personnel under their command to think for themselves and let them command their companies instead of micromanagement. The company officers, in turn should utilize the talents of the people under their command. Remember, some of he brightest minds in the fire service do not wear the bugles!
    ‎"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

  3. #3
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    Default

    The main question is how big is your department. This will dictate the function the battalion fire chief will have. What a battalion chief will do verses a deputy chief or shift captain is the basic span of control question that is described in basic Incident Command Systems.

  4. #4
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    Default

    Thanks for everyone that replied or at least read my post.
    The part I am struggling with the most is since our department is a combination one, every one (as you can imagine) does not want to buy into the BC concept.
    I am looking now for ideas as part of a presentation that I must make that shows how a BC on duty (career) 24/7 will ehance our operations.
    Any thoughts or ideas would be of a great help.

    Thanks

  5. #5
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    We work in a 4 platoon system, 10/14's. Each platoon is headed by a Battalion Chief. He is responsible for the overall shift from rosters, detailing of personnel, receiving sick and vacation requests, discipline, incident command, liason between the line personnel and the administration, and just about anything else that can be thrown at him. As a combination dept. you can justify the need for a BC from an accountability aspect. Everyone on duty at a particular time career and volly alike are accountable to the one person in charge which would be the BC. Any problems that occur, assignments on both trucks and the fireground, personal disputes, and the like. This system would reduce the occurance of conflict if the chain of command is to reflect that the BC is THE person in charge and is to make all decisions relevant to the operations on his watch.
    "I have no ambition in this world but one, and that is to be a fireman. The position may, in the eyes of some, appear to be a lowly one; but we know the work which a fireman has to do believe that his is a noble calling."

    Edward F. Croker
    Chief 1899-1911
    Fire Dept. City of New York

    HOOK N' CAN of the I.A.C.O.J.

  6. #6
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    I have been reading about your growing pains in the 'Daily Times' recently. With the career/volunteer issues, what you should focus on is the peaceful coexistence of the career B/C and the volunteer chiefs. Whether or not your B/C has multiple areas of responsibility is far less important to you (at this juncture in the process) than the chain-of-command at an emergency incident.

    Good luck!!! I'm afraid you will really need it.

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