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  1. #1
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    Default Before an engineer is ready

    Just curious if any of your departments ever push firefighters into the driver seat before they are ready or have the maturity and judgement to do the job?

    Scottsfire


  2. #2
    Forum Member Dave1983's Avatar
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    All the time. Our Chief thinks that everyone should be a driver, rather they want to be or not. Unfortunatly, driving is not a skill all posess, so this leads to problems. If a person is a poor driver in their POV, its a safe bet they will be a poor apparatus driver.
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    MembersZone Subscriber npfd801's Avatar
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    We've got a few that are supposedly qualified that have no business being there. We also just spent some quality time training a half-dozen or so how to run the pump, draft, etc. and I'm a little concerned about a few of them. They'll get the hang of it, but I just don't want it to be on the real thing. They haven't been released to drive without an officer present or a senior guy to back them up on the panel, so they spend a lot of time driving on training nights and pumping at training scenarios.

    I will say - we have mandatory yearly testing to make sure that our engineers can safely pump two lines, and transition from one line flowing to two, to the deck gun flowing while flowing lines, from tank water to hydrant, etc. So for the most part - I suspect that the initial line deployed into a fire will be pumped properly with enough water to get the job done. Its those more complex situations that concern me.

    Then again I haven't pumped water on a genuine fire for months...

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    FADO (driver) is a promotional step, which helps to eliminate that problem to some extent.

  5. #5
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    FADO ??????

  6. #6
    Forum Member Res343cue's Avatar
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    Fire Apparatus Driver / Operator

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    IC IC........is that an eastern thing? Never heard that before but it makes since.
    Learning new terms daily,
    Scottsfire

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    Forum Member Res343cue's Avatar
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    No clue where it originates..but I've seen it a couple other places before.

    We just call em drivers, engineers, or operators. None of that fancy-smancy stuff.

  9. #9
    Forum Member firenresq77's Avatar
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    For us it is a requirement for all new recruits to know how to operate all vehicles and where all equipment is on them by the end of their 1 year probation....... Some people don't "like" to drive, but there's no excuse to not be able to.

    Everyone should be able to drive and operate all apparatus........
    The comments made by me are my opinions only. They DO NOT reflect the opinions of my employer(s). If you have an issue with something I may say, take it up with me, either by posting in the forums, emailing me through my profile, or PMing me through my profile.
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  10. #10
    MembersZone Subscriber rualfire's Avatar
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    Default Driver classes

    We've just gone to a 3 class system

    Class 1 can drive and operate all trucks
    Class 2 can drive and operate small trucks (bush trucks, etc)
    Class 3 is a learner who can drive and operate at training events and when returning from calls.

    We are presenting the VFIS Emergency vehicle driving course with a written test, obstical course, and road course for the driving portion. And have to demonstrate compentency on pump operations for each truck. ( we have three different configurations ).

    People can certify to class 1 or 2 based on their desire or comfort level, but must have the appropriate level to operate a specific class of vehcile.

    We've made the course dates known for several months, and have 3 testing days scheduled. I suspect that we will run another course in the fall to catch those who are unable to attend the course due to scheduling.

  11. #11
    Forum Member Dave1983's Avatar
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    Originally posted by firenresq77
    For us it is a requirement for all new recruits to know how to operate all vehicles and where all equipment is on them by the end of their 1 year probation....... Some people don't "like" to drive, but there's no excuse to not be able to.

    Everyone should be able to drive and operate all apparatus........
    I beg to differ with you Bro. There are just some people who dont "get it" when it comes to driving, be it their POV, a BRT or a mo-ped. I firmly belive driving is a "mechanical" skill, and some are just not so inclined.
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  12. #12
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    Oh my goodness, I agree with Dave.

  13. #13
    Forum Member firenresq77's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Dave1983


    I beg to differ with you Bro. There are just some people who dont "get it" when it comes to driving, be it their POV, a BRT or a mo-ped. I firmly belive driving is a "mechanical" skill, and some are just not so inclined.
    I'm not disagreeing that some people "don't get it" or have more troubles than others, but the more you train on it, the better you will get, just like many other things in the fire service.

    Some people aren't confident in their skills or aren't the best at something right away. They need more training and assistance. Give it to them. The more they do it the better they will become. GIve them more driver's training.
    The comments made by me are my opinions only. They DO NOT reflect the opinions of my employer(s). If you have an issue with something I may say, take it up with me, either by posting in the forums, emailing me through my profile, or PMing me through my profile.
    We are all adults so there is no need to act like a child........
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  14. #14
    Forum Member Dave1983's Avatar
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    Originally posted by firenresq77
    I'm not disagreeing that some people "don't get it" or have more troubles than others, but the more you train on it, the better you will get, just like many other things in the fire service.

    Some people aren't confident in their skills or aren't the best at something right away. They need more training and assistance. Give it to them. The more they do it the better they will become. GIve them more driver's training.
    Again, some people will never be good drivers no matter how much training you give them. We have two on my department, one with almost 25 years on the job. He has damaged every rig he has driven, many more then once.
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    "No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government"
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    Success is when skill meets opportunity
    Failure is when fantasy meets reality

  15. #15
    Forum Member firenresq77's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Dave1983


    Again, some people will never be good drivers no matter how much training you give them. We have two on my department, one with almost 25 years on the job. He has damaged every rig he has driven, many more then once.
    So if you have someone who just isn't good on the hose line or isn't good with an airpack on or isn't good at truck work, what do you do???
    The comments made by me are my opinions only. They DO NOT reflect the opinions of my employer(s). If you have an issue with something I may say, take it up with me, either by posting in the forums, emailing me through my profile, or PMing me through my profile.
    We are all adults so there is no need to act like a child........
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  16. #16
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    How about if they can't do the job, you terminate them.

  17. #17
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    Wait a second. Not everyone can be an investigator, an inspector, a chief, or an officer. So if Joe Baloney doesn't want to progress beyond being a truckie or a pipeman, he should be penalized?

    Until that job description says the guy coming on should be capable of driving and pumping a rig, or spotting and maneuvering an aerial - if someone knows their limitations and doesn't want to operate an apparatus - that's fine with me. If he can at least learn a little of how to run a pump, so much the better so he can get water through the thing in a pinch - but again, there are plenty of guys who want nothing to do with being stuck at the pump panel on a fire, or being the officer untimately responsible for making sure his crew comes back each shift.

    Especially on the volunteer side - we've got lots of folks with no desire to drive an engine. With staffing as pathetic as it is in some places, to REQUIRE someone to operate an apparatus just took what could be an excellent medic or firefighter out of the picture. Sorry, we don't force anyone to drive here.
    Last edited by npfd801; 05-27-2005 at 06:09 PM.

  18. #18
    Forum Member firenresq77's Avatar
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    Again, this IS a requirement for us. You are expected to be able to drive the apparatus. We are a POC department and as 801 just said, with staffing how it is sometimes, you need to make sure that people can do the job. Yes, we have terminated people because they could not drive the apparatus.

    Nothing says we FORCE someone to drive...... Usually we have someone who wants to drive or doesn't mind driving...... But if we NEED that person to drive or operate the vehicle, they will be able to do it......

    I'm not bashing anyone for NOT requiring it. What works for us definitely doesn't work for everybody. It works well for us.

    A neighboring FD doesn't require everyone to be able to drive their Tower.... There have been times that they have been called to fill in at the neighboring "big city" FD and the Chief has to drive and operate the truck because nobody else that showed up could do it. I don't agree with it, but I'm not the one who has to deal with it, either.

    By the way, we've never had anyone leave of their own free will, just because they had to learn how to drive.........
    The comments made by me are my opinions only. They DO NOT reflect the opinions of my employer(s). If you have an issue with something I may say, take it up with me, either by posting in the forums, emailing me through my profile, or PMing me through my profile.
    We are all adults so there is no need to act like a child........
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  19. #19
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    If it is a "requirement," yes, they should be gone if they can't perform the function. Yes, they should know when they come on that it is a requirement.

  20. #20
    Forum Member jerrygarcia's Avatar
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    I have a very different take on this issue. We have a promotional step to FAO(fire apparatus operator), but can WOC(work out of class) in the next rank up.

    FF--->FAO
    FAO-->Capt
    Capt->BC

    With my truck, I call it mine because I am responsible for everyone on the rig and the rig itself. I am the captain. Nobody drives my truck without my approval. I have 2 drivers and 2 FF assigned to our tiller. They are all excellent at working the truck.

    You have to demostrate to me that you know all normal functions and emergency functions/overrides and limitations before you even get behind the wheel(front or back). You have to prove road worthiness. You have to be able to set the truck and work the aerial blindfolded. I don't care if you're the best driver in the world, you will not drive my truck until I say so.

    I do make it a point to cross train all of the FFs and FAO's in the house so that I know who can drive and their abilities. We work in a triple house so there's 9 FF's and 5 FAO's in house on my shift.

    One of the reasons that I feel blessed is that my last driver, retired 2003, helped the E-One engineers design the Super Tillers. K.C. took delivery of the first 5 made. I learned from the very best and expect no less from those he taught around me and that we continually train.


    Last edited by jerrygarcia; 05-27-2005 at 10:05 PM.

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