Fireground Management, Fireground Safety

Recognition Primed Decision Making: Saving Precious Time for First-In Crews on the Fireground

Issue 5 and Volume 171.

By Michael G. Emillio When reportedly asked how he might save the world if given an hour, Albert Einstein replied: “If I had an hour to solve a problem I’d spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and 5 minutes thinking about solutions.”1 In other words, the plan over time yields action. The fireground time continuum, of course, offers no such luxury: On the fireground, time over the plan yields action. The fireground is a place where “genius” is measured in seconds and fractions of seconds whose aggregate amounts to lives saved or, at the very least, property preserved. Einstein’s notion of planning is effectively turned on its head, as time limits planning in the equation. (1) Interior working crews will benefit greatly from minimized radio chatter. The ability of interior crews to communicate changes in working conditions and to alert the fireground to a Mayday is essential to safe…

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