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What drives your actions?

Posted by Sebastian Jacobs
Sebastian Jacobs
Keen Australian based fire fighter
User is currently offline
on Sunday, 15 January 2012
in Industry Insights

Firefighters are often faced with situations that require the ability to conduct an accurate size up, usually with limited information and in a compressed time frame.

If this is not challenging enough, the decisions made have the potential to endanger the lives of firefighters and may mean the difference between life and death for any persons that are trapped.

Where the outcome is not positive, firefighters face the prospect of having their decisions and actions analysed by people who will have the benefit of information obtained from detailed investigation, hindsight and generous time frames.

With this thought in the back of your mind, how do you make command decisions on the fire ground?

The logical process is to calmly analyse the hard and soft information available, make a risk benefit analysis to determine the likelihood of a successful outcome against the possibility of serious injury (or death) to members of your crew.

To further complicate this calm and logical thought process the firefighter has a few environmental and human challenges to deal with. Including, but not limited to:

  • Confusing, limited, poor or even false information

  • High ambient noise levels

  • Adverse weather conditions (heat, cold, wind)

  • Fatigue

  • Stress

Are your actions driven by emotion, tradition, routine or knowledge and skill based logic?

Shan Raffel

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