1. #1
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    Unhappy RIT responsibilities vs. civilian rescue

    I have a member on our dept who is causing quite a stir. He is stating to the other members that if he is assigned to be on RIT and he is activated as such, then if he comes across a civilian downed first while attempting to find the downed ff, he will rescue the civilian first. I am under the impression that the RIT is for FF rescue only. S&R teams are for civilians. I need some help here, can anyone give me a brief description of their dept SOG's concerning this? I would be happy with any comments on this topic. Thank you brothers!!!

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    Default Rescue preferences?

    Hmmm, pretty simple really. You're asking a technical question, so yes RIT or whatever you call them (RIC, others), is inserted for missing Personnel. But that isn't the answer to your question. One of our interns was with a neighboring MICU crew for his internship. They were responding to "x-hundred" block of some street...they pass an injured guy, and my co-worker says" hey there he is". Well, the Paramedics continued on to the address assigned them, and said "he'll have to get his own ambulance". Well it's sadly a true story (yes there was also a hurt dude at the given address), but they should have assisted the first injured guy.

    So, if your RIT guy is free-lancing, that should be controlled. If he runs across an injured occupant and assists them, he's right. There's your answer. Remember, SOP's, SOG's, MOP's, whatever, are guidelines so certain things aren't overlooked. If these guides ever limit one from doing the Firefighter's job, the problem is in the interpretation.

    And don't forget the Sisters.

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    We addressed that in training....are solution was to radio the position of the downed civillian and move on to the firefighter. The reasoning we used is that when a firefighter was down we would get a second team moving to the firefighter and they could take care of any downed civillian. PS we come first!
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    The purpose of the RIT, RIC, or FAST is to help FF's. You have them staged for that sole purpose. If your RIT uses search ropes like we do and all of the departments around us the civilian will be easy to find if you radio there location.
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    I agree. The rit should go to the FF. For all of the above reasons. Sorry we have no sop's on this to offer you. However the firefighter you mention may need to be reminded of how he would feel if he were the downed FF and was put in that position.

    My question is how many guys are you running rit. If you have 3 or 4 it may be feasable to leave one rit member behind until another team comes to get the vic. and than the rit member would proceed along the search rope until he met the rest of the team. Some of this will depend upon what you already have in place. But the bottom line to me is the rit keeps going until they get their FF's or they are told to switch out.

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    Brothers and Sisters, Thank you! I was beginning to think I had missed something in the classes I have taken on RIT. I am the training officer on the volunteer dept where this situation arose. We have minimal SOG's and RIT is not yet one of them. All we are going on is training that a few of us have for now. I know the Chief is working on an SOG as we speak. Now there are other guys questioning this topic also and wondering what to do. My career dept couldn't believe this was brought up. My arguement is that a ff may be a more viable rescue considering gear, scba, etc. than a civilian who has been in those conditions since before we were notified of a fire without protection. Not to mention the brotherhood thing!!! I told this individual that I am not going to tell his wife and kids that he is not coming home because I choose a possible, questionable, civillian rescue over him. I WILL NOT live through the rest of my life dealing with that in my head. Anyway, please keep the comments coming, If there is anyone out there that agrees or disagrees with me or the other posts, please let me know. Maybe I am missing something or don't see the whole picture. I just need to know. I am going to introduce him to this thread this week and then it may sink in on what RIT is all about. God knows I've tried everything else.

    Thank you very much Brothers AND Sisters!!!

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    We operate our RIT for ourselves. We addressed it in training that we are for FF rescue ONLY and likewise our tools are for RIT use ONLY not to be borrowed by non-RIT FF's.

    Granted there are a myriad of reasons a FF could need assistance but lets look at it as something has gone south inside and your guy is overcome and down. If he is in this situation in Full PPE with SCBA, is the civilian a viable rescue that is worth giving up on your own guy and potentially adding to the loss of life. Not to me. It may sound cold and un-caring, but my guys are exactly that.. MY guys and I am going to help them. We operate with a search rope with distance knots, etc so if we did come across this scenario we would radio to the outside that we had located a civilian victim at approximately the 75' mark, send in a crew to extract him/her we are proceeding our search for OUR OWN!!!

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    Exclamation no question

    I find it hard to believe that this is even a discussion. A person is a person. Our first priority is always to rescue. You may be there to assist a FF, but leaving a civilian there is beyond reason, and my morality.

    Prioritising comes into play, of course you make the sprained ankle wait for the coronary.

    Leaving a person in a burning building, with no PPE, no training, and no one looking for them is manslaughter.

    Iím sure d downed FF would want a civilianís life to come firs, otherwise they wouldnít be a FF

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    You always carry out the task that you are assigned.....RIT is there for firefighters. 1.You... 2.Your Brothers.......3. Civilians.......4. Pets....In that order.
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    i'm sorry guy but i have to agree with berwyn fd. The rit team is set up a certain task but rescue is rescue. If that was me i would consider rescuing both of them as quickly as possible. Long before there was Rit, ric teams there were back up teams, and rescue teams. the whole fancy RIT team is great but we must remember that a life is a life and that is a fact. As the chief of a vol. dept. it would be pretty for me to tell the family of either of them that i left them to find sombody else. YOU must figure out a way to get them both our QUICKLY.

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    Default R.i.t

    Quote Originally Posted by nmfd615
    I have a member on our dept who is causing quite a stir. He is stating to the other members that if he is assigned to be on RIT and he is activated as such, then if he comes across a civilian downed first while attempting to find the downed ff, he will rescue the civilian first. I am under the impression that the RIT is for FF rescue only. S&R teams are for civilians. I need some help here, can anyone give me a brief description of their dept SOG's concerning this? I would be happy with any comments on this topic. Thank you brothers!!!
    I have dun a lot of work with R.I.T. You need to ask your man if he was the FF down witch one goes first the FF or civilian. Then ask if the FF that is down started the fire. if he sed no then say why should he die. Tell hem that it is not his falt the fire starded. That is how it was showed to me by a SFM witch is a good frind and tercher. he just need to see the way it is in our line of work sum times you get to be the hero and sum times you get to be the badguy. I hop you can bring your man to see the right way befor you need hem . good luck and be safe rfiremen Dorchester Vol. Fire

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    Holly cow was that ebonics!! Realy I am not even sure that I got the point of the last post. Could you please repost what you are getting at little clearer.

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    I'd say it's a definite.. It depends! Who needs you more? Firefighter out of air and outside on a balcony or a civilian found in the interior hallway?

    I started learning and teaching RIT on a local level in the mid 90's. It was great to see so much interest in taking care of each other. Some great stuff has come out in the past 10 years or so and the best thing is that just about all of it has been grassroots... designed, figured out and implemented by US!

    I have seen some trends that are probably a result of all this interest. Mainly (and it's a good thing) not a whole lot of practical RIT rescues to draw experience from. Scenarios like this are interesting to talk about, but honestly, why waste your time? There is a ton of training information out there, you can find a good handful of them a year when you take out heart attacks and traffic accidents. NIOSH reports, NFPA reports, USFA reports.. learn from the guys that died. Talk about the things that kill guys every year.. collapse, rapid fire growth, lost and out of air. How many times do you think you'll get a viable civilian and a firefighter down? Try the Powerball for better odds. Talk about how to find a brother, how to get him on air, how to keep him alive. When we get good at everything else, you can worry about multiple rescues. What next? Whether to rescue a guy from my company or mutual aid?

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    Default we come first

    we come first...always...if you're sent in on r.i.t. or f.a.s.t. jobs, that's your Job you are responsible for finding the downed ,lost, or trapped firefighter(s).as for leaving a man behind with a civilian who may already be dead?i don't think we would leave anyone with the victim unless it were another firefighter who was in distress.radio contact with ops and 2nd fastteam monitoring progress ,need for additional tools,ground ladders to be placed to allow for rapid exit

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    Default

    [QUOTE=sevenfingers]One of our interns was with a neighboring MICU crew for his internship. They were responding to "x-hundred" block of some street...they pass an injured guy, and my co-worker says" hey there he is". Well, the Paramedics continued on to the address assigned them, and said "he'll have to get his own ambulance". Well it's sadly a true story (yes there was also a hurt dude at the given address), but they should have assisted the first injured guy./QUOTE]

    Ummm, no. If you stop for the second patient you are abandoning the first. You radio the location of the second and continue on your way.

    As for RIG (RIT), it is for FFs, period.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave1983
    Ummm, no. If you stop for the second patient you are abandoning the first. You radio the location of the second and continue on your way.

    As for RIG (RIT), it is for FFs, period.
    Kindly provide the link to the law that requires ambulance crews to drive around injured people in the middle of the road. It should make for interesting reading.

    Did your classes cover what to do if that pesky civilian getting in your way while you're ritting is awake? What if they grab your ankle when they realize that you plan to leave them inside this burning building? Should you kick them in the face, or reach back and use a tool?

    Wow.

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    Your order to place a line to protect a stairway... you start to do your task and another officer tells you to go get a pike pole. Which do you do first? do you know the reason for the line...can you make your own judgement on the two orders. If you answered yes to this question, you need to go back to probie school. You complete your assigned task in the order in which it was given...if you don't than you had better let someone know that the assignment wasn't completed because some ones life may depend on it!

    If you are assigned to the RIT your job is firefighter rescue... end of story!
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    Default Firefighter Rescue First!!!!!!!!!!

    Maybe if the fire attack crew quit and did something else (take pictures, what ever) the whole incident will get better! I don't think so!
    The WORD for the day is DISCIPLINE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! When YOU are assigned a task you need to finish the task. You need to be at your best at your task. The civilian will still be there when you RESCUE YOUR OWN FIRST!

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    Are you really so simple that you think abandoning a person in a burning building and getting a pike pole are similar priorities? Again, wow.

    I guess if we were pulling ceilings next to each other and I fell through the floor, you wouldn't rescue me because you're NOT on the RIT team.

    Neither of you answered whether you'd punch that coughing grandmother you came across in the gut to get her off you so you could complete your assigned tasks in the order that they were given to you. "Sorry lady my job is firefighter rescue... end of story!" "Suck it up, old girl, haven't you heard? The WORD for the day is DISCIPLINE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

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    Tuff question

    I would have to stick with the job at hand, and report the location of the victim and move on to my objective. When you have your RIT tool cache, do you let other companies use the RIT tools.....no...The tools belonging to the RIT team and stay with RIT as do the most important tools...."RIT personnel"

    If you have only 1 RIT team and they are called to duty, where would you be if they went off on another objective and informed you they couldnt rescue the downed Firefighter. ITs a tuff job, but we must take care of our own first. I'm not going to get into logistics of how we mark or tag the victim but we all have different ways of working the job. Just remember we all have opinions, respect it.
    Last edited by captjab; 10-27-2005 at 02:35 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by clancyxdogg
    I guess if we were pulling ceilings next to each other and I fell through the floor, you wouldn't rescue me because you're NOT on the RIT team.

    [/COLOR]"
    dogg, I be sure to go after the civilian if your ever in trouble...because you would have wanted it that way
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    Default Let's work together !!

    U.S. Fire Administration Firefighters Fatalities in the United States in 2004


    "2004 was another year of unacceptable loss for the fire service, for firefighters who lost their brothers and sisters in 2004, and-most of all-for families and friends of firefighters who died in 2004.

    "The Foundation is working from a list of initiatives that was developed at a large gathering of fire service safety experts"

    1. "Define and advocate the need for a cultural change within the fire service relating to safety, incorporating leadership, management, supervision, accountability, and personal responsibility."

    When a MAYDAY goes out on the fire ground someone better have a plan. You can not pick up the phone and call 911. YOUR THERE!

    SOP's & SOG's are there and we all understand S### happens.
    We need to work together and decrease Firefighter Fatalities.
    Last edited by ffsmromstadt13; 10-26-2005 at 09:53 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ffsmromstadt13
    When a MAYDAY goes out on the fire ground someone better have a plan. You can not pick up the phone and call 911. YOUR THERE!

    SOP's & SOG's are there and we all understand S### happens.
    We need to work together and decrease Firefighter Fatalities.
    Exactly. And in addition to that training and planning, you have to use that thing on your shoulders for something other than a new yorker holder.

    Although a couple of guys argued against it, most of the herd on this thread was perfectly willing to take ONE THING they learned in a classroom( RIT teams are not to be used for other fireground ops, only for firefighter rescue) to a ridiculous extreme. Nobody asked the reason a mayday was called, the condition of the firefighter(out of air and lost? fell down some steps?), his location(above the fire? below? next building?) No one wanted to know a thing about the civilian you wanted to abandon, either.

    Rescuing civilians isn't "another task"--it's THE TASK that's supposed to be our highest priority, and what we took an oath to do.

    That being said, it would have to be pretty desperate circumstances where you couldn't accomplish both rescues in a timely manner. I find it really hard to believe anyone would have to say "Hey, good thing we got Joe out--oh, yeah, there's some old guy still in there." What did you guys do for RIT training, watch "Sophie's Choice"?

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    When you work in an area that has limited manpower the RIT will be doing other tasks Ex ( Outside venting, ladderring the building, and what ever else needs to be done) but the reason they are there is to rescue us !..period.. end of story!
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    Our highest priority is ourselves! In today's age of limited resources, we have to evaluate risk verses reward. The downed civilian has already taken in smoke and heat and at best will require extensive medical treatment. The downed firefighter is the priority for the RIT/RIC crew assigned to make entry and attempt a rescue of that firefighter. Yes, Discipline is the word of the day. It takes discipline to do our jobs. It takes discipline to stand idle on a tarp outside as the assigned RIT/RIC crew. Who would you rather talk to after the fire? The wife and kids of your downed brother or sister?

    Speaking of discipline, once the mayday has been declared on the fireground, how disciplined are the firefighters on the scene to continue to do the assigned task at hand before free-lancing sets in and the incident commander is scrambling to regain scene control? Hearing the mayday will already be difficult. Making the decision to write your brother or sister off is another thing.

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