1. #1
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    Default Squad Company Concept

    Looking for information or articles discussing the points of implementing or operating engine companies as Squads. Any SOP's for dispatching or operating would be beneficial as well.

    I have the jist of it down, but am looking for specifics from multiple agencies to combine ideas and make a presentation.

    Thanks.
    RK
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    Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

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    Memphis, I know you are on here quite a bit and by now you know that there are many different definitions of a squad from across the country. Are you reffering to FDNY type squads, ambulance squads, rescue squads, etc etc??? I realize you added Engine to what you are looking for, but it could still be taken as cross staffing and engine co with another piece of apparatus.

    My question, while on this topic, is whether or not FNDY and Chicago Squad Co's are similar in function? Also what other cities implement the use of what FDNY defines as a squad? Lastly, and I know this will draw some heat from the FDNY guys........It seems their squads' duties are very similar to cities that run "quints" (minus the stick)....From what I understand.....they pick up truck or engine work depending on their particular dispatch assignment. Please, and I know you FDNY guys will, correct me or clear this up.
    Last edited by ehs7554; 02-26-2008 at 10:49 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ehs7554 View Post
    Lastly, and I know this will draw some heat from the FDNY guys........It seems their squads' duties are very similar to cities that run "quints" (minus the stick)....
    That's awesome! With the amount of razzing between FDNY truckies, enginemen, the rescue elite and the squads this could be pretty funny!

    Squads: Quints without sticks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ehs7554 View Post
    My question, while on this topic, is whether or not FNDY and Chicago Squad Co's are similar in function?
    I would answer but I am not familiar with FDNY squads. Ours are two piece units staffed by 5 ff and an officer. They have an equiptment truck that carries tools and a snorkel. Both units are always together (like two chicks going to the toilet - or five chicks and their officer). They have air bags and high angle stuff and all sorts of other specialized rescue crap. On fires they are baisically additional truckmen. They go to all pin-ins which makes sense if this were 1976, but every truck in the city has jaws and cutters and spreaders and whatever. Clout heavy, glory hounds who are never first in at a fire (except, oddly enough, the chicago fire video posted here by frenchfireball!) but are always there long enough to wipe some soot on their faces and tell you how hot it was "in there" as you bed your hose!
    Last edited by ChicagoFF; 03-18-2008 at 03:00 PM.
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    Here is a link to our SOG on our Squad operations.

    Squad Operations

    Our "Squad" is a single piece that operates as both a truck and an engine. It is not standard on our calls.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChicagoFF View Post
    I would answer but I am not familiar with FDNY squads. Ours are two piece units staffed by 5 ff and an officer. They have an equiptment truck that carries tools and a snorkel. Both units are always together (like two chicks going to the toilet - or five chicks and their officer). They have air bags and high angle stuff and all sorts of other specialized rescue crap. On fires they are baisically additional truckmen. They go to all pin-ins which makes sense if this were 1976, but every truck in the city has jaws and cutters and spreaders and whatever. Clout heavy, glory hounds who are never first in at a fire (except, oddly enough, the chicago fire video posted here by frenchfireball!) but are always there long enough to wipe some soot on their faces and tell you how hot it was "in there" as you bed your hose!

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    EHS - Yes, like the FDNY Squad program.

    Thanks for the link Bones.

    Thanks Chief - will check back.
    RK
    cell #901-494-9437

    Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

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    Our squads are also 2 piece companies staffed with 4 FF and an officer. Only respond with front line piece depending on dispatch. Front line piece is an engine and 2nd piece is kinda like a bread truck which carries more of the specialized stuff. They operate as an engine and have defined box assignments. However, at the chiefs discretion they can be utilized as the SOC company on an assignment and their position on the fireground gets filled with another engine. Besides their regular box assignments they also respond to fires with atleast 2 engines and 2 ladders in service. They also go on hazmats, high angle rescue, trench rescues and such. They also get hiked out on accident responses with possible or confirmed entrapment. Which like ChicagoFF stated seems almost redundant seeing how all ladders carry cutters, spreaders and rams. But, they do carry some more extensive extrication equipment. They can be special called on any assignment but as with every company they have chiefs that love em and get them in service every chance they can and chiefs that hate them and recall them every chance they get.

    Our neighboring engine is a squad company and we generally have a pretty good working relationship with them. Only really tweeks our nipples when they are operating as an engine yet still wanna run around with hooks.
    Just another one of the 99%ers looking up.

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    The FDNY squad concept goes a little like this. Back in the war years of NYC there were something like 8 "squads" that rode around in trucks that were basically just manpower movers and they only acted as additional manpower at alarms. By the mid seventies all of these units were disbanded.

    Then in the late seventies the citizens of Park Slope, Brooklyn complained to the governor of the state who pressured the city into re-opening the recently closed firehouse in the area. Instead of opening a regular engine company they decided they would re-establish Squad 1 and have them respond to the first due boxes of the closed engine and all working fires in the boro. They would act as an engine at their first due boxes and basically be a truck at working fires outside their first due. As fire duty dwindled they received more specialized equipment and training to be able to handle a wider array of emergency, like the rescue companies.

    In the late nineties more companies were slated to be closed because of budget cuts and fewer fires. The department, and namely Chief Downey, recognizing the need for a greater capacity to handle large scale emergencies like Haz-Mat incidents and terrorist attacks. Rather than close the engines they made them squad companies - with a little more emphasis placed on Haz-Mat and WMD responses. They were trained as Haz-Mat Technicians - they same as Haz-Mat 1 - and given a second piece for Haz-Mat responses. To be assigned to the companies they held "tryouts" on guys' own time, which wasn't a hit with the union, but in theory, gave you got the most motivated, talented and experienced guys for the job - the way it should be.

    Today the 7 squads are basically "rescue engines" that respond to alarms in their first, second and third due areas as an engine company*. Additionally, they respond to all 10-75's (working fires) or greater in a much larger area. In addition to their Haz-Mat training they are also trained in high-angle, collapse, confined space, trench and other technical rescues and they're dispatched to these incidents in their areas.

    * - With all this said, today the squads are viewed by most of us "regular" firemen exactly the way ChicagoFF puts it. In addition to ChicagoFF's gripes - our squads today are mostly full of junior guys who often don't have the experience and knowledge.

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    Our county started the Squad designation a few years ago after someone was watching 3rd Watch(not kidding). Here, a Squad is a Rescue-Engine, that should be capable of any engine company operation and some rescue operations. Some companies have enough rescue equipment to be a full heavy-rescue, while others can barely pop a door, but that is soon changing as the County Chief's Assoc. has implemented minimum equipment standards.
    For most companies here, Squads are the "do all". It's expected that the ff's can do Engine, Truck, and Rescue company operations.
    A Fire Chief has ONLY 1 JOB and that's to take care of his fireman. EVERYTHING else falls under this.

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    Kramer, what are trying to stir up? I can see it now " Dispatch Squad 34 were closer to that you can disregard the Rescue and show us responding"
    Lt. Dan Harris
    Rescue Co. 3
    Memphis Fire Dept.
    danharris@iaff1784.org

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    Quote Originally Posted by danomfd View Post
    Kramer, what are trying to stir up?
    DanO,

    You know that I would NEVER intentionally do anything to stir something up!!
    RK
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    Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JTFIRE80 View Post
    For most companies here, Squads are the "do all". It's expected that the ff's can do Engine, Truck, and Rescue company operations.
    Yep, the do all....Squads...Quints without sticks.....And trust me a I am not defending the quint, but I am just calling it the way it looks.

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    A rescue company in my neck of the woods does pretty much what the name suggests. At a fire, it acts somewhat similiar to what a truck company would do. It carries air bags, spreader, cutters, lights, rope rescue, trench rescue, and etc.

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    I like to think of the squad guys as laddermen that are afraid of heights...........

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    Quote Originally Posted by MemphisE34a View Post
    EHS - Yes, like the FDNY Squad program.

    Thanks for the link Bones.

    Thanks Chief - will check back.
    Our Squads date back years. Initially set up to supplement fires with manpower and not apparatus. They responded in a "wagon" and acted as an Engine or Truck when needed.

    Squads in The City are set up for various types of operations; Engine Company, Ladder Co, Tech Rescue, and Haz-Mat. They have three riding positions, Engine, Ladder, and Haz-Mat. They are trained at the Recuse School and Haz-Mat School. They have 2 pieces, 1 front line Engine, and a "bread" truck that carries their technical gear. In Haz-Mat functions they initiate operations by "scouting" out the area for Haz-Mat Co. 1 but mostly they mitigate small haz-mat incidents. As and Engine Co. they have first,Second, and third due boxes and are supposed to function as an Engine on those assignments. For fires outside their response areas, they are assigned along with Rescue, or in lieu; if a Rescue is not available. At these fires they are assigned by the IC with whatever function he sees fit, as an Engine, Ladder, or to supplement rescue. As for Tech Rescue, they supplement Rescue companies with manpower and equipment.

    That's a brief outlook on their functions. As for Quints for them. That would not work here due to how we already assign units to Boxes and their specific jobs at fires. Our Squad concept has been around for many many years. All the companies but Squad 1 were disbanded, and in 1998 the city established the new Squad concept as "Enhanced" Engine Companies to support Haz-Mat Co 1 and all 5 Rescue Co.'s. The program wasn't created overnight, and the subject matter experts here developed the concept as it would benefit us the best. Quints would be adverse to us because

    A) The cost for the Swiss Army Fire Apparatus is absurd for what you actually get. And the idea does not fit our model of response.
    B) Companies that were made already existed as engines. They were at first, Modded to carry the extra gear, then they got the "rescue-pumper" type vehicle. A quint does not have the compartment space to fit our complement of hose and equipment....and fit into an existing firehouse that is on average of 70 years old.
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    The second piece carries the haz mat equipment ( overpack drums, various suits, patay pump, etc) Anything else you would need to be beat out ESU is on the rig, ropes, hurst tool (waste of space) Meters, 5 guys that never worked in a busy truck, but can tell you all about what truck work is like.

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    What you call "squads" would be "Rescue Engines" around here. Depending on where they are listed on the run card will depend how they are dispatched on a box alarm. Let's use Rescue Bus, I mean Rescue Engine 18 (I couldn't resist Harve! ). If they are dispatched on a first due box the will be utilized as the first due engine company (this is also assuming that one of station 18's regular wagons are not in service). If they have two crews, one each for an engine and the rescue engine, the engine will be dispatched as the first due engine and the rescue engine will be dispatched as the first due special service.

    The rescue engines in our county are all very similar in set up. In my opinion they have just enough equipment to operate as an engine and barely enough to operate as a rescue squad. It's not as big a deal when they have to operate as a rescue squad on a fire because they don't need a whole lot of stuff. But from my experience, anything much more than a door pop, or flapping the roof, they start to run low on equipment.

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