Fireground Management, Leadership

The Command Bubble: A Tool for the Fireground and For Life

Issue 3 and Volume 172.

By THOMAS DUNNE At its core, firefighting consists of confronting and overcoming a series of challenges, which are similar at most of the incidents to which we respond. Standard operating procedures (SOPs) and past experience guide us at the structural fires, automobile accidents, and medical emergencies that make up the bulk of our work. We must make individual decisions about response routes, the initial size-up, and hands-on tactics, but generally, our knowledge allows us to manage these operations quickly and efficiently. However, unless there is something really distinct about these incidents, over time, many of them seem to blend together. Incidents That You Remember Only when something goes wrong or someone gets hurt does an incident ultimately remain in your memory. You tend to forget the fire that went very well because, most likely, the operation didn’t deviate much from the challenges you expected to face. Sometimes the SOPs work…

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