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The Sunday Preach:

'Head on a Swivel'

"Company Officers must not be completely focused on the locking devices on the door itself. Those are forcible entry firefighters' tasks. They must keep their heads on a swivel. While they must offer calm, focused advice to the FE team, they must also be watching smoke and fire conditions and watching the status of the hoseline." Pg.200, "25 to Survive: Reducing Residential Injury and LODD"

The initial actions of the first arriving company officers will set the tone for the incident and their actions are critically important to the overall success of the operation. 

In many parts of the country, we certainly know that the Company Officer may indeed be an integral part of that FE team. They MUST NOT however become 'task saturated' and overlook any changing conditions that may be reported to them via Handie-Talkie radio, or visual cues shut out by self imposed 'blinders.' 

To master the 'head on a swivel'... is certainly easier said than done. While there is no replacement for actual fireground experience, realistic training with simulated conditions, full PPE and SCBA... are a 'must have' start!

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