1. #1
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Location
    Sitting in my chair, listening to the scanner while the young kids respond
    Posts
    375

    Question What are we coming to?

    There recently was a post on the volunteer forum about run sheets and seeking samples. I posted a suggestion that they should be using NFIRS for reporting purposes. If everyone did, we would have accurate statistics on the fire situation in the country and thus the basis for requesting money.

    My post got bumped down on the list in favor of lights and sirens on POV's. Maybe I'm too old but it seems to me that fire reporting is far more important than lights and sirens. Law enforcement seems to be able to come up with figures on how many murders, rapes, etc. occur each year but we can't seem to figure out how many fires. NFPA statistics are always estimated because not everyone reports.

    As George said in another thread, we need to get our act TOGETHER.

    We have the potential to be a powerful force, but some how we have become targeted on red light and sirens, volunteer and career, smooth bore vs. fog, leather vs. plastic, etc.

    I am old. I have not had an air pack on in over four years yet I am still committed to seeing be fire service progress. We can't do it in a lot of little groups. Their is strength in mass.

    Time to get our act together.

    Rant off.


    Stay safe.

    Pete
    Pete Sinclair
    Hartford, MI
    IACOJ (Retired Division)

  2. #2
    MembersZone Subscriber
    SamsonFCDES's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Posts
    1,708

    Default

    Hmmmm.... This istantly brings to mind a number of phrases that best sum up my experience of trying to lead the ignormant masses (my local/fellow VFD members) to the light...

    "Leaders always get shot first"
    "He who sticks his neck out farthest is the first to loose his head"
    "Dreams are like rainbows, only fools chase them"

    and on and on.

    I am all for advancing the fire service, but the fire service has to want to advance.

    From what I have experienced it doesnt want to.

    In the last 2 years on the VFD I voly for the youger guys got tired of the complacensy and took the bull by the horns. Things are better then ever, it is amazing how far some things have come...

    Then the old schoolers decided that things were changing to fast and planted their buts firmly to the ground, refusing to move forward or backward.

    A lot of young fire fighter are chomping at the bit to have the chance to make a difference, to advance the fire service.

    The problem IMO is that there is an old gaurd that does not want change, does not want to let any measure of power go, and definatly does not want anybody younger then themselves to have a chance at making a difference.

    That is the fire service I experience, I HOPE that is different for others in other places.
    Last edited by SamsonFCDES; 12-06-2004 at 04:26 PM.
    -Brotherhood: I don't know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.
    -Mistakes: It could be that the purpose of you life is to serve as a warning to others.

    -Adversity: That which does not kill me postpones the inevitable.

    -Despair: Its always darkest before it goes Pitch Black.

  3. #3
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Bossier Parrish, Louisiana
    Posts
    10,619

    Default

    I agree heartily with both posts....

    Yes, thier is an old guard that resists change ...wether it is
    full use of airpacks, fully enclosed cabs, full PPE etc etc..
    people are threatened by change, especially if they know that they
    don't have the skills and leadership abilities to be part of the
    change. Sometimes ya can easily nudge 'em out of the way and
    sometimes ya need a bulldozer .....

    And Pete, you are so right. Firm and accurate Data is the basis for
    any discussion on what we need from the government. Without that
    data it is tough to make our case, and yes the Cops have figured
    that out which is why they keep statistics so religiously. One of
    these days we'll figure that out.

  4. #4
    Forum Member
    Co11FireGal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Country Roads, Take Me Home...
    Posts
    721

    Arrow

    SamsonFCDES, your dept. sounds about like mine. Some of us have been working very hard to change the way the department is run, and things are better for us than they have been in a long time too. BUT...others are still dragging their feet.

    As far as NFIRS goes, maybe some state offices need to step in. I don't think West Virginia does much right, but our state fire marshal's office does a good job forcing departments who won't comply into it. Our state money depends on us reporting (and reporting in a timely fashion). We do use our own run sheets, then transfer the info to the WVFIRS form, which is then passed along to NFIRS. It would really be a pain to take a WVFIRS or NFIRS sheet out on a call, especially for vehicle accidents and other calls that aren't reported.
    IACOJ

    "And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap it if we do not lose heart."

  5. #5
    MembersZone Subscriber
    firefighterbeau's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Central ND USA
    Posts
    451

    Default

    First I agree with all the posts, change needs to happen as long as its good change. I know of somethings that have happened since our old chief was ousted cause we needed change. Somethings have gone down hill, others have worked out pretty good, explaining exactly what could get lengthy.
    Second I agree that NFIRS should be used or a standard report system, but we use ''run sheets'' that are specific to our dept. Ours is a basic run down of who, what, where, and when. From there the officer or senior firefighter tells the chief exactly what happened and all info that was noted either by paper or mental is put into NFIRS. The dept may have been looking for that kind of run sheet.

  6. #6
    MembersZone Subscriber
    SamsonFCDES's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Posts
    1,708

    Default

    Bump.

    I think this thread has a lot of good dicussion left in it.

    I didnt want it to go away to early.
    -Brotherhood: I don't know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.
    -Mistakes: It could be that the purpose of you life is to serve as a warning to others.

    -Adversity: That which does not kill me postpones the inevitable.

    -Despair: Its always darkest before it goes Pitch Black.

  7. #7
    MembersZone Subscriber
    EFD840's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Eclectic (no, NOT electric), Alabama
    Posts
    1,510

    Default

    It would really be a pain to take a WVFIRS or NFIRS sheet out on a call, especially for vehicle accidents and other calls that aren't reported.
    Co11FireGal, please don't say you only report fires. Every time you respond to a call, you're providing a service to your community. If we're sent to something simple as a tree in the road, it gets a report and goes into NFIRS.

  8. #8
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Jul 1999
    Location
    DuBois, IL - just south of I-64 in the middle of the state
    Posts
    2,041

    Default

    Everything we do gets reported to NFIRS. IL keeps after us to get our reports in, maybe not every month but if we miss a couple of months a reminder comes. We run 1st responder with or county ambulance service and every one of those incidents gets reported, along with accidents, false alarms, storm work, etc. If a truck goes out, and sometimes if one doesn't make it out the door, it's reported.
    Jack Boczek, Chief
    Ashley Community Fire Protection District

    FLATLANDERS FOREVER!

  9. #9
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    710

    Default

    This brings up questons from my end. The U.S. reporting system NFIRS, gets reports of every call that fire depts attend? Is that correct?
    I know our system - if you can call it that - any fire with a dollar loss is reported to the Alberta fire commissioners office, oh and environmental spills over 50 litres. Thats it! I can speak for my department that we have run sheets for every call and it is entered into our own database for our stats.

    So are your run sheets entered into a national database? and what is the purpose? Can you use these stats to enhance service to communities and move forward with volunteer departments?
    Last edited by Dave404; 12-09-2004 at 12:45 PM.

  10. #10
    Forum Member
    RescuHoppy7's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Owego,NY USA
    Posts
    362

    Default

    We use our own run sheets that are then put into the Firehouse Software program and sent to New York State, It is filled out for every Fire and EMS run our department (Fire Dept. based EMS)
    NYS FF1/AEMT-CC
    IAEP Local 152
    "You stopped being in charge when I showed up"

  11. #11
    MembersZone Subscriber
    ameryfd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Wisconsin
    Posts
    598

    Default

    Originally posted by Dave404
    This brings up questons from my end. The U.S. reporting system NFIRS, gets reports of every call that fire depts attend? Is that correct?
    Actually, more than that. NFIRS reporting requires even reports of calls that are cancelled in route and false alarms.

    We do the same as most. We have our own two-page run sheet that includes spots for most of the info needed for the NFIRS basic module, then we have a space for a fairly indepth narrative. Once a month we go through our local sheets and transcribe to NFIRS.

    A question for those who use the NFIRS for thier local run sheets....where do you get the hard copies of the modules and sheets. We do our NFIRS reporting online and I can't get it to print out in an editable form?

  12. #12
    MembersZone Subscriber
    ChiefReason's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    Illinois-where pertnear is close enough!
    Posts
    5,636

    Default

    Pete:
    I have also noticed that good discussions are hard to find. Threads that have nothing to do with firefighter safety or tactics or leadership seem to get all of the responses. Topics that would be considered useful seem to die off suddenly.
    In any event; you have reason to voice your concern.
    NFIRS is crucial to gaining accurate statistical data for the fire service. You don't have to take the forms with you, but your run sheet should have the information on it that will go into the NFIRS report. We did it.
    Like Jack said; Illinois is fanatical about getting the info. If Kay doesn't get it in a timely manner, she will send you a notice. Don't ignore it. I have met this woman. She could pummel me. But she's too nice to do that.
    We only hurt ourselves when we don't report the information to the national data base.
    CR
    Visit www.iacoj.com
    Remember Bradley Golden (9/25/01)
    RIP HOF Robert J. Compton(ENG6511)

  13. #13
    Forum Member
    EastKyFF's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Posts
    3,090

    Default

    When we first started NFIRS in 2000 (the KyFIRS wasn't Y2K compliant, so we had to), there was some way I got a blank form for each module. But I don't remember how.

    That thing was too cumbersome anyway. It has a zillion questions that can be answered in the narrative with much less space. I made up a one-page form that we carry in all apparatus. At the scene we scribble down the vitals--dimensions of structure, water use, owners' names, addresses, etc.--then take it back to the station. There, I have a big 3" binder with identical blank sheets in it, numbered with incident numbers. We get times from 911 then transcribe everything over from the on-scene form (which is usually dirty, wet, messy, or wrinkled). This nice clean final copy stays in the binder, come hell or high water, and gets entered into NFIRS. Then I slash through the incident number with a highlighter pen so I don't enter it twice, but it stays in the binder in perpetuity.

    The on-scene form I developed is in Microsoft Excel format. Anybody who'd like a copy without cost or obligation can PM me and I'll e-mail it right along, with my department's name removed and everything!

    As an aside, if we don't roll a truck, I don't enter it. Maybe I should, but we have no way of getting an accurate count of personnel if we get cancelled before the rig rolls. So I just let those go.
    "Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet.
    --General James Mattis, USMC


  14. #14
    MembersZone Subscriber
    CJMinick390's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2000
    Location
    Sitting on my Laa Laa waiting for my Yaa Yaa
    Posts
    1,042

    Default

    I had one of those evil attorneys (ok, this one wasn't so evil as he was representing my employer) tell me that "if it isn't documented, it didn't happen." This is precisely why NFIRS is so important. We can sit here all day and talk about the service we provide and how important it is, but if we don't have the statistics to back it up, our word is useless when we make our case for our slice of the resource pie. This is true at all levels of government from the Feds to the local village selectmen.
    Chris Minick, P.E., Firefighter II
    Structures Specialist, MD-TF 1

    These statements are mine and mine alone
    I.A.C.O.J. Building crust and proud of it

  15. #15
    Forum Member
    HeavyRescueTech's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    2,460

    Default

    Originally posted by EastKyFF
    That thing was too cumbersome anyway. It has a zillion questions that can be answered in the narrative with much less space.
    and I think that is one of the problems. I first learn anout the NFIRS system on the first class of FFII. not being an officer, I never dealt with it. I was shocked to learn there were something like 8 or 10 sections, and they needed to be filled out for each call. yes, some don't because they don't apply to the call, but still 8 sections? that's a huge time committment. no wonder volunteers don't want to do them.

    maybe if there was a 1 (one) page report, for all calls, everyone would be willing to fill it out. if you want, mandate that one page, and leave the other 8 as optional pages. this way, you can get accurate numbers, and people will be more willing to fill out the forms.

    as an aside, I was told that police officers will spend more time filling out paperwork than they do in the field. well, I guess with them filling out reports for EVERY call they go on, I can finally see why.
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

    FF/EMT/DBP

  16. #16
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Location
    Sitting in my chair, listening to the scanner while the young kids respond
    Posts
    375

    Lightbulb Another thought

    What do you do with those burned out cars that someone stole and torched, then left in the boondocks. The state police or sheriff find it and call a wrecker. Goes into their data base as a stolen car but nothing in the fire data base.

    We still don't have an accurate data base on the fire problem in this country and until we do we will play second fiddle to law enforcement. They seem to have their act together.

    As for non-fire and cancelled calls: Every dispatch should have a NFIRS report as should those that are delayed in reporting.

    When we have the data we will get the funds.

    Stay safe,

    Pete
    Pete Sinclair
    Hartford, MI
    IACOJ (Retired Division)

  17. #17
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Jul 1999
    Location
    Flanders, NJ
    Posts
    13,537

    Default

    There is a much larger issue than what stupid run sheet to use. It is unfathomable to me that in the year 2004, the US has no way to accurately guage the true fire problem. One of the impediments to the fight on arson is that no one has a clue what the real problem is.

    Here's an exercise you can complete if you have time. Search on the web for the following information:

    1. FBI Uniform Crime Report Arson stats
    2. USFA Fire and Arson Stats
    3. NFPA Fire and Arson Stats

    Compare them. Anyone see the problem? They do not even come close to matching. That is the problem in a nutshell.

    NFIRS is not a perfect system. Niether is UCR. But NFIRS is a step in the right direction.

  18. #18
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Central IN
    Posts
    98

    Default

    one of the Vol. Depts. that I recently joined was denied a Grant due to no having run reports turned in. Due to being denied the grant for a new Grass Rig (which we need) our Dept. is now requiring us to make a report anytime we pull the trucks out of the bays, except for cleaning or maintenance.

  19. #19
    Forum Member
    Weruj1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    NW Ohio
    Posts
    7,857

    Default

    uhm joe............thats how it should be ! We use the NFIRS and put in each incident ourselves, cancellation or not.
    IACOJ both divisions and PROUD OF IT !
    Pardon me sir.. .....but I believe we are all over here !
    ATTENTION ALL SHOPPERS: Will the dead horse please report to the forums.(thanks Motown)
    RAY WAS HERE 08/28/05
    LETHA' FOREVA' ! 010607
    I'm sorry, I haven't been paying much attention for the last 3 hours.....what were we discussing?
    "but I guarentee you I will FF your arse off" from>
    http://www.firehouse.com/forums/show...60#post1137060post 115

  20. #20
    MembersZone Subscriber
    ChiefReason's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    Illinois-where pertnear is close enough!
    Posts
    5,636

    Default

    Hey, Joe:
    Don't want to burst your bubble, but now that you're doing the reports, you must also agree to NIMS if you want any future Federal grant applications.
    That's right; you won't even get a CHANCE to apply if you don't agree to do NFIRS reports and adopt NIMS.
    Damn bureaucracy!
    CR
    Visit www.iacoj.com
    Remember Bradley Golden (9/25/01)
    RIP HOF Robert J. Compton(ENG6511)

  21. #21
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    Conshohocken, PA
    Posts
    391

    Default time commitment

    Originally posted by DrParasite
    I was shocked to learn there were something like 8 or 10 sections, and they needed to be filled out for each call. yes, some don't because they don't apply to the call, but still 8 sections? that's a huge time committment. no wonder volunteers don't want to do them.
    Dr.
    I'm not sure about the system that your using, but unless there's been a fire, or you've taken some sort of action, there is very little that needs to be entered in the lastest revision of NFIRS. If the person that is your computer administrator is doing his/her job correctly, you can set up most computer incident reporting systems that limit the information to what is essential. However this is a double edge sword. If you don't enter it, you won't get it out later. What I mean by that is if you want to track something later for management purposes, and you decided not to enter information from the start, you can't get that information when you didn't collect or enter it in the first place.

    The dilema is what do you collect and enter now, when you may need some information in the future. It's normally better especially when you first start to get as much information as you can and begin to stop collecting informatin on those things that you don't really need at a later time.

    To all others on this thread:
    For those who don't fill out a report to a call that you have been dispatched to but haven't responded because you were recalled. Your only hurting yourself. How do you justify to your community the job that you do? How many times does that happen to your department? If your not keeping track you can't even answer that last question accurately. You should make out a report NFIRS or not, for each and every call that you are dispatched to. What if a member during the response to the firehouse is involved in a vehicle accident and he fails to mention it, or you haven't recorded the incident? Even if it wasn't his fault, if you don't have a report of the dispatch or call, he's hanging.

    What appears to be minor now, has in the past been the focus of law enforcement efforts later. The prosecution of those who falsely report fires and alarms needs to have accurate reports just as a structure fire would be recorded. If you haven't filled out a report it didn't happen, and you didn't take any action.

    I cannot stress enough how important accurate numbers are. For financial, management and legal purposes, please fill out a report. By using a common system that is reported to your state and the USFA it can and will make all the difference come budget time. Report every call no matter if you get out or not, and no matter how minor it appears. It may come back to haunt you in the future if you haven't. More importantly if you want the money you need to spend some time justifing why you should get it. It's as simple as that.

  22. #22
    MembersZone Subscriber
    ullrichk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    Deleted by the forum gremlins
    Posts
    1,663

    Default

    DrParasite

    NFIRS incident reports are not a big deal to enter into a computer. It rarely takes me ten minutes to make a comple report unless it's a full-blown structure fire. (We happen to run Firehouse Software, but I'm sure that other programs are comparable.)

    Back in the dark DOS days of NFIRS data entry, I personally coded and entered 2500 NFIRS reports from written incident records in order to get useable data for a research project about the number and types of calls we were making.

    Simply statted, if you don't have good data, you can't make sound decisions (or justify requests for $$$$). If your data is buried in narratives or just stored on paper, you may as well not have it.
    ullrichk
    a.k.a.
    perfesser

    a ship in a harbor is safe. . . but that's not what ships are for

  23. #23
    Forum Member
    Co11FireGal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Country Roads, Take Me Home...
    Posts
    721

    Default

    Originally posted by EFD840
    Co11FireGal, please don't say you only report fires. Every time you respond to a call, you're providing a service to your community. If we're sent to something simple as a tree in the road, it gets a report and goes into NFIRS.
    A tally of the number of calls for each area goes to the state, but fires are the only incidents reported in detail.

    This is the form that is used to report non-fire incidents for the month:
    http://www.wvfiremarshal.org/pdf/non...port%20v41.pdf

    This is the fire report:
    http://www.wvfiremarshal.org/pdf/firereport.pdf
    IACOJ

    "And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap it if we do not lose heart."

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts

Log in

Click here to log in or register