Apparatus & Equipment

The Qualities of an Effective Engineer-Driver

Issue 2 and Volume 161.

BY STEVE PRZIBOROWSKI The engineer is one of the most important positions in the fire service. In some departments, it is a promotional rank. In others, like mine, firefighters are cross-trained to drive, to increase flexibility and help reduce staffing problems. Titles of the positions may be different in departments. They may include “engineer,” “driver/operator,” “driver,” “firefighter/engineer,” “apparatus operator,” and simply “firefighter” (the senior firefighter is rotated into the position for the day). Regardless of whether the position of engineer is a promoted rank or what the name of the position is for that critical role, the individual filling the engineer role should be qualified for the duties and responsibilities of that job and, more importantly, also have an extreme sense of situational awareness and regard for safety. PROFILE OF AN EFFECTIVE ENGINEER In no specific order, I have put together the top 10 characteristics of the profile of an…

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