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December 2011 Blog Posts (30)

Train Today for Tomorrow

As a Training Officer, with 2012 staring at me, there are decisions that need to be made. Specifically twelve months of training that needs to be prepped, planned and scheduled. A primary step in this process is to decide what training will be correctional and what will be developmental. The old adage of ‘two steps back , one step forward’ applies. Let’s take a look at each.

Correctional training is looking at the behaviors and attitudes of our people rather then skills. Complacency…


Added by Christopher Huston on December 13, 2011 at 1:30pm — No Comments


I was really hoping that I would never have to draw another seat-belt cartoon. Ugh! I was wrong! C'mon guys, we're smarter than this!


Added by Paul Combs on December 12, 2011 at 7:05pm — 8 Comments

Judge Not

I've done it and you've done it. It is going to happen again and it's going to happen soon. With every line of duty death the Monday morning quarterbacks come out and tell us all what they should have or should not have done. We preach and teach to learn from these tragedies by understanding the circumstances surrounding the incident. But, what are we doing to make sure that this doesn't happen?

Our job is dangerous. Worcester Fire Department is a highly trained department and… Continue

Added by Jason Hoevelmann on December 11, 2011 at 9:38am — 5 Comments

Electrical Hazard Recognition - Fireground & MVC's

We had the opportunity to gain some valuable knowledge from our local electric utility company at a recent training.  They provided answers to questions with professional and expert recommendations.  First, I’ll review some terminology through pictures.  Second, I’ll list a series of questions that were asked of the utility company personnel and their answers.  Lastly, I’ll review several…


Added by Paul Hasenmeier on December 8, 2011 at 5:02pm — No Comments

The Purpose

This is a very simple post but one that I am finding is ever more important. Take a look at the picture and what is the first thing that you think of? What do you see? We've all done this drill or scenario and we have all at one point or another felt the anxiety of being "stuck" in a box, tube or tight spot. Some may have had instructors that guided us through and others may have been screamed at they needed to get out or they were going to die in there.

The main purpose of this post…


Added by Jason Hoevelmann on December 6, 2011 at 9:00am — 1 Comment

Cribbing For Heavy Vehicle Lifting

Here is a basic review of wood cribbing capacities and then some thoughts on how to increase your crews critical thinking before the heavy rescue lifting call.

Are you prepared to lift a heavy vehicle off of an entrapped victim?  Do you have the knowledge, equipment, and cribbing to make the rescue fast and safe?  Fast is a relative term in this case.  Technical rescues are not often fast, but we should strive for expeditious rescue with coordinated and competent techniques.…


Added by Paul Hasenmeier on December 5, 2011 at 3:55pm — No Comments

I Have Always Done Victim Survivability Profiling

VSP is one of the hottest topics of conversation in the fire service today.  Captain Marsar’s research has taken the fire service by storm and has created an interesting “new” flavor of the month for those who feed on “firefighter safety through spectatorship”.  Maybe it was because of my animosity for the “let it burn” folks within our profession that I was initially against the concept of deciding if a building is searchable from the front yard and was unfairly biased.  However, the more I…


Added by Matt McDowell on December 5, 2011 at 9:18am — No Comments

Anatomy of a Firefighter

They are questions that are often asked by both those wishing to be a firefighter and by those trying to understand why someone would be a firefighter: what does it take and why do you do it?

I will often reach back into my past and resurrect some of the mental tools that I used during my time as a firefighter. It is a characteristic that is so ingrained into your being that it is yours’ to be used for the rest of your life. You will react to decision-making in a much different…


Added by Art "Chief Reason" Goodrich on December 4, 2011 at 5:03pm — 1 Comment

Umbrellas and Sprinklers

The pictures below were sent to me by PTFD Lt. Bronner while on a road trip.  

After you get done chuckling at the photos below consider the following:

  • Are your walk-throughs, inspections, and preplans catching building or content alterations that could potentially place you or the occupants at a disadvantage during a fire?
  •  Would the umbrella material melt away and not interfere with sprinkler coverage?…


Added by Paul Hasenmeier on December 3, 2011 at 10:48pm — No Comments

Smoke and Mirrors

I have been involved with training for a long time. One thing I have learned over the years is that training does not need to be wrapped in smoke and mirrors. It doesn't have to have a "trick" or wild and crazy obstacle courses. I see so many training officers and instructors spend so much time building almost impossible mazes, courses and drills that the purpose of the exercise is lost.

Recently we set up a new training division and basically started over with our training schedule and…


Added by Jason Hoevelmann on December 1, 2011 at 4:00pm — No Comments

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