Fire Engineering Training Community

Where firefighters come to talk training

We often talk about being a "Combat Ready" firefighter. What does that mean? I first heard the term "Combat Ready" and the idea behind it around 2003 from Lt. Pete Lund, a storied fire officer from FDNY Rescue 2 who was also a volunteer at Kentland with his son (Matt, aka "Vinny") while I was living there.

So what does it mean to be a "Combat Ready firefighter"? Is it your certifications? No... Is it a cool paint scheme on your fire truck? Absolutely not. Is it a "holier than thou, step aside I got this, don't question me I know my stuff attitude"? No it's the total opposite. Is it your skill with a hoseline or Halligan? Kind of...

Certainly many people may have different definitions or ideas of what it is to BE this concept of "Combat Ready". I would argue that it is a product of your motivation and attitude along with your relentless attention to detail. And more importantly, your "Combat Ready" state (or lack thereof) is really the sum of all of these little details when put together - not any one of them individually.

This driver from CFD Engine 13 is standing by with his apparatus while crews investigate a gas leak in an apartment building - no big deal, everyday stuff. While he waits at the rig he has several options. Daydream? Check Facebook on his phone? Chat with other FF's? None of the above. His selection was to test the hydrant that he is sitting next to. Not a pitot gauge flow test, no paperwork required - but a quick simple informal check. Taking ownership of his first due.

By simply opening the hydrant, he has checked and loosened the caps. He has insured the stem is intact and that water will flow. He has flushed any debris that may have accumulated since it was last opened. And by touching and using that hydrant, he has cemented in his mind where that hydrant is located. He'll remember that next time he's in this block. So what's all this matter? Is that really necessary?

Fifteen hours later this hydrant was used by the 1st due engine on a working apartment fire in the same block.

Perhaps those simple actions 15 hours earlier contributed to how smoothly that fire went.

Being "Combat Ready" is about the small actions you take day-in-day-out. Actions that at the time and by themselves often seem inconsequential or "over the top". Actions that (unfortunately) most others aren't taking. Others may even mock you for this kind of proactive attention to detail. That's because you're making them look bad. You are more prepared, more motivated then they are. KEEP IT UP.

#CombatReady

Views: 14635

Comment

You need to be a member of Fire Engineering Training Community to add comments!

Join Fire Engineering Training Community

Comment by Sid Newby on February 6, 2014 at 7:36pm

Great  Post Nick. Thank You for your dedication to the job. We all should lead by example without making a big deal about it. The members see it without all of drama.

Policy Page

CONTRIBUTORS NOTE

Our contributors' posts are not vetted by the Fire Engineering technical board, and reflect the views and opinions of the individual authors. Anyone is welcome to participate.

For vetted content, please go to www.fireengineering.com/archive/.

Fire Engineering Editor in Chief Bobby Halton
We are excited to have you participate in our discussions and interactive forums. Before you begin posting, please take a moment to read our policy page. -- Bobby Halton

Be Alert for Spam
We actively monitor the community for spam, however some does slip through. Please use common sense and caution when clicking links. If you suspect you've been hit by spam, e-mail peter.prochilo@clarionevents.com.

FE Podcasts


Check out the most recent episode and schedule of
UPCOMING PODCASTS

© 2021   Created by fireeng.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service