Issue 6 and Volume 150.

“SUCCESS” CAN BE DECEIVING BY CHARLES R. ANGIONE A successful (or lucky) fire operation can lull us–and our customers–into a false sense of security. It was a call we dreaded. “KEC 581, Engine 2, Engine 4, Truck 3, Rescue 1, Car 2: Respond to a reported structure fire at Muhlenberg Regional Medical Center. Time out: 0430 hours.” It was also a wake-up call (in many ways) that opened this firefighter`s eyes. Often, we consider success on the fireground an affirmation of our operational procedures. The fact that a firefighting technique or fire protection system “worked” does not necessarily mean that it worked as well as it could have. Would doing it another way have produced more effective, more efficient, or safer extinguishment or incident mitigation? All fires go out eventually, but at what price? Did we have an up-to-date prefire plan? Would better fire inspections have prevented the fire in…

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