Many years ago I got into a habit of using a stopwatch to time fire and extrication evolutions. At first many thought it was to show how "fast" we were compared to trucks or to test my crew. But after doing it for a while firefighters realized that it wasn't a test at all, but a method we could use to evaluate and speed up if possible. Nobody will disagree that time is an extremely important factor on any emergency. Using the stopwatch proved beneficial for so many reasons. Timing gives you a good idea of how long a particular skill will take (Catching hydrant, pulling an attack line, hydraulic side-out, etc.) It also will show where efficiency may be lacking and where improvements can be made. For example-when timing my backstep ff deploying a 1 3/4 line the stopwatch enabled me to see how long I could spend on my walkaround until he sitting at the front door waiting on me. Timing and efficiency go hand and hand. Get out there and try you hand at the stopwatch. You will be surprised what you find.
ISAAC FRAZIER is a Special Operations Lieutenant with St. Johns County Florida’s Heavy Rescue “Squad 4”. First due to the deadliest stretch of roadway in the nation, Frazier teaches from personal street experience providing tried and true tactics. Frazier is the owner of Tactical Advantage Training and creator of the course Tactical Extrication. Frazier travels nationally sharing his passion teaching fire and extrication courses. Frazier is a Florida Fire Officer, FL Paramedic, Special Operations Officer, Florida State Instructor, FLUSAR Tech, Diver, and FL Hazmat Tech.