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Firefighting Challenges of Campuses, Complexes, and Industrial Sites

At FDIC on Friday, March 25,  Purdue University (Lafayette, Indiana) Firefighter Jason Fisher contrasted the fire response to campuses, complexes, and industrial sites to typical industrial or residential responses from the perspectives of preplanning, access, fire load, and specialty hazards with factors that must be considered from the point of arrival to the conclusion of the incident. Topics included campus safety, multiple casualties, research labs, creating partnerships, developing mutual aid, and working with brigades. 

Fisher said, "Departments with response duties to college campuses and surrounding areas must realize the importance or our role in protecting the students, combining this mentality with creating partnerships only maximizes our potential of fulfilling our jobs."

He continued, "Hazard recognition is the most important job we have besides arriving safe to any incident. Becoming complacent in these areas, which is easy for the fire service to do, can become more dangerous and hazardous to us as an industry more than most of us realize."

"There are more facets involved in a typical campus, complex or industrial site, than we or our partners in response fail to realize. Passing these hazards on in training and regular communications is essential; if you don’t have this luxury, it’s our job to search this out."

Fisher concluded, "The best operating practice I can pass on in these response realms is INCIDENT MANAGEMENT, not only for you as the primary agency but making sure your mutual aid agencies understand this as well. Combining the known and unknown hazards with the population at risk with a department that is not typically first due can be a catastrophe."


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