Fireground Safety, Officer Development

Being an Effective Incident Safety Officer

Issue 3 and Volume 172.

By Richard Marinucci The mission of an incident safety officer (ISO) is to prevent injuries to firefighters whenever possible. The most effective ISOs are those who have the right skill set above just being great firefighters or fire officers. They must combine the attributes of an expert; a salesperson; a diplomat; a missionary; a recon ranger; and, at times, an enforcer. If improving safety outcomes is the goal, then pursuit of methods to improve effectiveness must be included in the preparation of those designated as this important position. This means that establishing an ISO within the incident command system is done not only to “check the box” but also to truly influence the operation and prevent harm. Results are the true measure of success; using as many means as possible will allow an ISO to get to that goal. There are experts in all walks of life. They are recognized…

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