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  1. #1
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    Default What Is Your RIT Response?

    I was talking to a co-worker about RIT Response. We heard that Denver FD sends an extra engine company on alarms dedicated solely RIT. Can anyone from the DFD or area confirm that please? Even if you don't know, please tell us what your RIT response is and how many firefighters you have dedicated to that.


  2. #2
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    I'm not from Denver, but our dept sends a dedicated engine company to fill the role. It's supposed to be 2 in and at LEAST 2 out.

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    MembersZone Subscriber dday05's Avatar
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    We run a engine with 4 RIT trained firefighters on it and an incident commander to over see the RIT team. So we send 5 people total. Our engine has all of our RIT tools on/in it.

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    Forum Member st42stephenAFT's Avatar
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    By "alarm" I hope you meant like 1st alarm, 2nd alarm, etc. Not like fire alarm, or smoke alarm. That would be over doing it a bit.

    My department usually runs 2 Engines FAST since we have 2 company's in town. The man power response usually varies from 4-10 guys depending on when the call comes in. During mid-day, our response numbers are usually around 4, but at dinner time, they can be up into the double digits. All depends on who's working and where they are, just like every other call we get.

    Each piece of apparatus that responds has some FAST equipment on it in one of the compartments. Then when they arrive on scene, one of our chief's take FAST command, and directs what to do and where to stage. During that time, the saws are all started up, and everything is ready to go in case we're needed.

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    We dispatch three engines, two trucks, a rescue, and a chief on 1st Alarms.

    The third due engine is assigned RIT duties. Each engine has RIT tools on it, (Primary Rit Tools) and the trucks have the secondary equipment. All of the tools are placed in a staging area, usually on the A side of the structure.

    The RIT team is responsible for placing a ladder for escape on the second floor, and conducting a 360 of the structure.

  6. #6
    Forum Member mdcook's Avatar
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    Post FAST Team response

    For my volunteer department, we respond mutual aid for our FAST team with our heavy rescue, seats 8, with a driver (non-interior FF), at least 4 FAST FFs and, if possible, a safety/accountability person and a go-fer or FAST trainee.
    Our SOG's say that any one going as part of the FAST report to the station, unless they are closer to the scene than the station, then they are to call the station and report to the officer in charge that they are responding in their POV. This lets the OIC know how many FFs he has so they don't have to wait for some one else to show up.
    We have members that live in all parts of our district and that live in neighboring districts, so some times our people are closer to the scene than our station.
    As one of the designated safety officers for my department, I will go if available.
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    We do not have a dedicated RIT response, primarily due to manpower.

    RIT is often assigned from staging as the majority of our personnel arrive POV. All apparatus from our volunteer stations are usually driver only and the 1-2 pieces we get from Central, which are a mix of paid (minimum of 1/maximum of 3) and volunteer rideout personnel are often commited to initial operations are they are first-in in about 50% of the district.

    In some cases we do not assign as RIT if manpower does not permit, which is quite common during the day. If an emergency was to occur, manpower would more than likley be pulled from rehab.

    While this is probably not right, it's simply the nature of the beast. We have a VERY limited amount of mutual aid manpower, some of which do not have a substancial amount of interior experience and no RIT training due to thier very rural nature and limited fire experience.

    The city department, which would be the best choice for RIT based on thier experience, will not send a company mutual aid if it to be used for RIT. It has been made clear to us that if they are not a working company, they will be returned to quarters.

    This is probably the situation in many rural departments. We have begun the process of training our senior firefighters in supervising RIT operations, and training all firefighters in basic RIT operations and self-survival. For us it's a start and the best course given our manpower situation.

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    We run a third engine to every alarm call and the last one in becomes the RIT crew. We do have RIT equipment carried on the truck, but much is the same stuff every pump carries as well. Last year though, our RIT was activated for a FF down. Because of that we are looking at things more closely and looking at what would enhance things. A fire call for us is 3 pumps, a truck, and ambulance, third pump in being RIT.

    At our incident the RIT team was activated, but could not locate the downed FF. A second alarm was struck immediately when the mayday was called and we got another pump, truck, and rescue with the pump and truck being additional RIT crews.

    What it boils down to is manpower. As stated, not every dept has it, and unfortunately, many don't see a need for a dedicated crew. The "it hasn't happened here" attitude is quite prevelant in many places. Also many places think they will have the necessary resources to handle a mayday. To that I say BS. While RIT in itself sucks to do, it is a very important responsibility and should be set in place right away, as well as the dedicated RIT crew, should take the job very serious. Get the tools ready, do a walk around, get ladders up, etc. When the s**t hits the fan, you have to react NOW!!!

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    Forum Member len1582's Avatar
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    A RIT unit is automatically dispatched if an officer reports a W/F. It's a ladder ccompany with 3 FF's and a captain. High rise or large incidents could bring two RITs.

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    Both places I have worked dispatch a dedicated FAST Co. The FAST crew should not be put together like a puzzle, nor should it be obtained from a rehab area.

    The FAST duties are all encompassing enough. They need to do their own walk around to be familiar with entrances and exits into the structure. The OIC of the company needs to check in with command to know how many companies and firefighters are operating inside the structure.

    They should not be feeding hose into the structure. They should not be helping establish the water supply. They should not be venting the roof or windows, moving fans around, doing this doing that.

    They should not be sent in for a report of another missing civilian.

    Not enough manpower.....no dedicated RIT bag.....no dedicated tools....etc....are not good enough.

    The most important tools needed in the rescue of a Brother are heart, brains and determination.

    Tools that are required are carried on almost every fire engine around the country and commonly in our pockets: Webbing, a few carabineers, wire cutters, about an 8' pry bar and maybe the irons.

    Given these two sets of the equation, the third part is the most vital: DRILLING. And not just once in awhile drilling.

    I said it in another thread. If you are not motivated or interested by the very nature of this job, take the "I fight what you fear" and the Calvin and Hobbs stickers off your car, turn in your Galls tee shirt and do the rest of us a favor, go home.
    Last edited by DocVBFDE14; 07-01-2007 at 11:23 PM. Reason: the PS.
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    Forum Member Dave1983's Avatar
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    We added a third engine company to act as RIT. All engine companys have RIT equipment and all members are RIT trained.
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    A RIT ladder is dispatched to every fire with 2 engines and 2 ladders in service. The ladder runs 4 FFs and 1 officer. Every ladder in the city carries the same RIT equipment and is visibly marked on the compartment so it is easily retrieved if extra equipment is needed.
    Just another one of the 99%ers looking up.

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    On a 1st Alarm, our 5th due engine is assigned as RIT. A MINIMUM of 4 FFs.

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    I'll take the "PEN IS MIGHTER" for a thousand TREBEK

    Seriously Turd...we send a fourth engine as RIT on a regular alarm. Three firefighters and an officer. All of our personnel are RIT trained. All of our Truck Co.'s carry RIT equipment in a specific compartment. The RIT crew takes their hand tools with them and collects the RIT equipment from the Truck into a stokes and heads for the command post. Reader's Digest version.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    The city department, which would be the best choice for RIT based on thier experience, will not send a company mutual aid if it to be used for RIT. It has been made clear to us that if they are not a working company, they will be returned to quarters.
    Wow, how stupid is this! Judging by a policy such as this these "city" guys are just waiting to be on the front page with a LODD. When a FAST assignment isn't worthy of their response? They are showing how little they know about the concepts and purpose.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DocVBFDE14 View Post

    They should not be feeding hose into the structure. They should not be helping establish the water supply. They should not be venting the roof or windows, moving fans around, doing this doing that.

    They should not be sent in for a report of another missing civilian.
    Doc, while I understand what your saying and agree in concept, the fact is that this is not reality in many non-urban places. For many of us (most I suspect) establishing a RIT/FAST is functionally taking away 4 FFer's from an already weak response. We agree it must be done because the data shows fires are down and LODD's remain the same. But, due to staffing we need to have the flexibility to utilize the RIT/FAST in some manner that will allow them to be proactive on the fireground yet remain fully ready to respond to a FFer emergency.

    We teach our personnel that the incoming RIT/FAST must assemble their tools, perform a RIT/FAST size-up, the officer must report to command and then the team may be used to throw portable ladders that otherwise would not be thrown (preventative safety measure) open any other egress doors that need FE (another preventative safety measure). Check utilities, change air bottles and basic things that would otherwise go undone. The main point we pound home is that whatever the task is, it cannot require SCBA air time, it must be immediately proximate to the RIT/FAST post, cannot be overly physically taxing, must be able to be stopped without adverse effects and the members must be radio equipped. If this were not allowed many other IC's would throw their hands up and declare RIT/FAST undoable (as many do). Try and convince a manpower poor dept. that 4 guys need to standby doing nothing!

    AS for not sending them in for a civilian: I gotta disagree strongly here. I'd send them if there isn't anyone else available right then, and call in another RIT/FAST assignment. But the whole reason we exist is to rescue civilians and if we wanted to ensure our safety at any cost we would use lights and sirens to respond, or maybe we'd not respond period. To me a report of a trapped occupant is a known emergency vs. the RIT standing by awaiting an emergency. While we all agree having a RIT/FAST is necessary we cannot lose sight of our responsibilities.

    In concept I'd love to have out FAST standby at the ready, monitoring radio traffic, conditions and basically just watching and learning everything they can. There's is almost always something that can be learned by going to fires, whether you participate or not. Sometimes you just sit back and grin and think, well maybe my dept. is do things pretty well.
    Last edited by RFDACM02; 07-04-2007 at 09:31 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RFDACM02 View Post
    Doc, while I understand what your saying and agree in concept, the fact is that this is not reality in many non-urban places. For many of us (most I suspect) establishing a RIT/FAST is functionally taking away 4 FFer's from an already weak response. We agree it must be done because the data shows fires are down and LODD's remain the same. But, due to staffing we need to have the flexibility to utilize the RIT/FAST in some manner that will allow them to be proactive on the fireground yet remain fully ready to respond to a FFer emergency.
    This is also a common problem in the "bedroom" communities such as ours where all-volunteer fire departments are very limited in manpower during daytime alarms.

    We have begun to address this problem with our automatic mutual-aid policies. If there is even a possible WSF, the closest mutual aid truck company is automatically dispatched as the RIT team.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by RFDACM02 View Post
    Doc, while I understand what your saying and agree in concept, the fact is that this is not reality in many non-urban places. For many of us (most I suspect) establishing a RIT/FAST is functionally taking away 4 FFer's from an already weak response. We agree it must be done because the data shows fires are down and LODD's remain the same. But, due to staffing we need to have the flexibility to utilize the RIT/FAST in some manner that will allow them to be proactive on the fireground yet remain fully ready to respond to a FFer emergency.

    We teach our personnel that the incoming RIT/FAST must assemble their tools, perform a RIT/FAST size-up, the officer must report to command and then the team may be used to throw portable ladders that otherwise would not be thrown (preventative safety measure) open any other egress doors that need FE (another preventative safety measure). Check utilities, change air bottles and basic things that would otherwise go undone. The main point we pound home is that whatever the task is, it cannot require SCBA air time, it must be immediately proximate to the RIT/FAST post, cannot be overly physically taxing, must be able to be stopped without adverse effects and the members must be radio equipped. If this were not allowed many other IC's would throw their hands up and declare RIT/FAST undoable (as many do). Try and convince a manpower poor dept. that 4 guys need to standby doing nothing!

    AS for not sending them in for a civilian: I gotta disagree strongly here. I'd send them if there isn't anyone else available right then, and call in another RIT/FAST assignment. But the whole reason we exist is to rescue civilians and if we wanted to ensure our safety at any cost we would use lights and sirens to respond, or maybe we'd not respond period. To me a report of a trapped occupant is a known emergency vs. the RIT standing by awaiting an emergency. While we all agree having a RIT/FAST is necessary we cannot lose sight of our responsibilities.

    In concept I'd love to have out FAST standby at the ready, monitoring radio traffic, conditions and basically just watching and learning everything they can. There's is almost always something that can be learned by going to fires, whether you participate or not. Sometimes you just sit back and grin and think, well maybe my dept. is do things pretty well.

    You say it is not feasible with low manpower. There are cities responding with an Officer, Driver, and one firefighter on the backstep and are still preforming RIT duties. Mutal Aid agreements are one way to bolster manpower.

    As for the latter, FAST- FIREFIGHTER Assist Search Team(Truck). You committ your already limited RIT to a reported trapped occupant. Meanwhile the floor collaspes under your hose team. You've called for a new RIT but they are 10 minutes out. What do you? Tell the trapped members to wait for the new RIT?

    The purpose of those firefighters "doing nothing" is to be able to help a trapped, injured or missing firefighter. Have a report of a trapped occupant, slide another company into that assignment. The RIT/FAST responsibility is to there Brothers
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    'The fire went out and nobody got hurt' is a poor excuse for a fireground critique.

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    ...nevermind my question was already answered
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwfire2000 View Post
    I'm not from Denver, but our dept sends a dedicated engine company to fill the role. It's supposed to be 2 in and at LEAST 2 out.
    I believe that the RIT team cannot be part of the 2 in - 2 out, they are in addition to that rule.

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