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We are a single truck company department with 5 engines/stations.  We have had a dedicated truck for 10 years.  Last year we put our 75' Quint to backline and put a 100' midmount platform in service. It required new training and some changes in operations.  We have done well but are having problems with positions and qualifications.

Who is qualified to operate your Aerial?

How are they chosen?

Does it require special certification?

Who are replacements when the operator is gone?  Other drivers, back seat, etc....

Thanks Guys!

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We are 50 members out of two stations.  10 men per day and operate two engines and one 100 ft tower ladder.

All our members become qualified to operate although we don't want everyone to operate. By the end of their second year they will have completed the required training.  We are a young FD and don't have the luxury of dictating this to a select few.  Also, our paramedic staff our ladder so that contributes to the situation. These men rotate on and off the truck.

We have improved our positioning in the past few years by first doing a lot of classroom training on positioning then making every call the truck goes on a positioning drill.  By our SOP the truck arrives and takes its best position - no waiting for orders - get in and get set up.  We then critique those situations and build a better plan.  WHen we had guys stage on the roadway the truck guys did not get experience manuvering in the parking lots, setting up, making judgements, etc.  Now when we have a fire we are able to get in better and go to work sooner.

 

 

Our department runs 10 Truck Companies within our department utilizing 9 mid-mount 95-100' platforms and 1 75' Quint.  At the present we do not have a definitive minimum requirement of who can be certified on our aerials other than they must be at least an Acting Driver.  The popular opinion is that they must be an Acting Driver for at least 1 year but this is not policy.  Normally a Driver is assigned to the Aerial with Acting Driver's certified on the particular aerial as back-up.  All Drivers assigned to a double house are certified on the aerial assigned and reserve units. Acting Drivers assigned to a double house can be certified based on the Driver's, Company Officer's and Battalion Chief's approval.  As for special certification, the answer for us is absolutely and the answer for you should be most definitely.  An aerial operator must be thoroughly familiar with the truck, equipment, systems, and operation as he/she will in most cases be operating independently to accomplish assigned tasks in support of operations.  Also they must be completely familiar and comfortable in driving and operating a large vehicle as they are quite different than an engine as well as from one to another. A lot of what you require of your operators will depend on how your trucks will be utilized.  Are they used as true truck companies or are they going to be just another engine company with elevated stream capabilities?  If the former is the case, as it should be, then you will need to ensure that anyone & everyone certified to drive and operate an aerial is proficient in all aspects of the aerial, its equipment, systems and the expected operational utilization. 

   We are in the process of defining our minimum requirement for certification, most likely being an Acting LT and making it policy.  We are also developing both a formal Aerial Operator's Certification Course for new operators and an In-Service refresher course for current certified operators.  All of this must take into consideration your available resources in regards to personnel as well as training resources.

Thanks Steve,

We are a dedicated Truck Company and we are trying to set up a Truck Operator Position.  Driver?operator is a promoted position, but not all of our current Truck drivers are senior drivers.  They had been on the old Aerial so had experience.  So now with the new LARGE Truck we required a formal training and did not train all drivers to operate it.  So when both T drivers on my shift are gone it requires overtime or leave refusal.  Creates a new Driver classification and different rules under the contract. Old mentality that ALL drivers can operate the Truck.  But as you say it is a whole different set of responsibilities than an Engine Driver.  Our T driver is usually in charge of the Vent Crew.  Thanks for the response.

BT 

Steve Brown said:

Our department runs 10 Truck Companies within our department utilizing 9 mid-mount 95-100' platforms and 1 75' Quint.  At the present we do not have a definitive minimum requirement of who can be certified on our aerials other than they must be at least an Acting Driver.  The popular opinion is that they must be an Acting Driver for at least 1 year but this is not policy.  Normally a Driver is assigned to the Aerial with Acting Driver's certified on the particular aerial as back-up.  All Drivers assigned to a double house are certified on the aerial assigned and reserve units. Acting Drivers assigned to a double house can be certified based on the Driver's, Company Officer's and Battalion Chief's approval.  As for special certification, the answer for us is absolutely and the answer for you should be most definitely.  An aerial operator must be thoroughly familiar with the truck, equipment, systems, and operation as he/she will in most cases be operating independently to accomplish assigned tasks in support of operations.  Also they must be completely familiar and comfortable in driving and operating a large vehicle as they are quite different than an engine as well as from one to another. A lot of what you require of your operators will depend on how your trucks will be utilized.  Are they used as true truck companies or are they going to be just another engine company with elevated stream capabilities?  If the former is the case, as it should be, then you will need to ensure that anyone & everyone certified to drive and operate an aerial is proficient in all aspects of the aerial, its equipment, systems and the expected operational utilization. 

   We are in the process of defining our minimum requirement for certification, most likely being an Acting LT and making it policy.  We are also developing both a formal Aerial Operator's Certification Course for new operators and an In-Service refresher course for current certified operators.  All of this must take into consideration your available resources in regards to personnel as well as training resources.

Thanks Steve.

Drew Smith said:

We are 50 members out of two stations.  10 men per day and operate two engines and one 100 ft tower ladder.

All our members become qualified to operate although we don't want everyone to operate. By the end of their second year they will have completed the required training.  We are a young FD and don't have the luxury of dictating this to a select few.  Also, our paramedic staff our ladder so that contributes to the situation. These men rotate on and off the truck.

We have improved our positioning in the past few years by first doing a lot of classroom training on positioning then making every call the truck goes on a positioning drill.  By our SOP the truck arrives and takes its best position - no waiting for orders - get in and get set up.  We then critique those situations and build a better plan.  WHen we had guys stage on the roadway the truck guys did not get experience manuvering in the parking lots, setting up, making judgements, etc.  Now when we have a fire we are able to get in better and go to work sooner.

 

 

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