Firefighters know what works best

Firefighters know what works best

Richard J. Shinske

Retired Officer

Detroit (MI) Fire Department

Congratulations to Lieutenant Jay B. Olsen for a worthwhile contribution to firefighter safety and survival! “AWARE: A Life-Saving Plan for Rescuing Trapped Firefighters” (December 1998) was right on the mark. Over the years, I`ve noticed that our best tools are developed by firefighters, and the AWARE plan looks like one terrific tool.

After listening to so many suggestions for new rules, checklists, and time-wasting/danger-escalating procedures by nonfirefighters (outsiders) and pseudo-firefighters (I`ve taken classes and been to a few fires), it was refreshing to learn of the AWARE Rescue Plan. AWARE is easy to remember and makes the best use of whatever time we have at that kind of scene. This article should be required reading for every fire department member.

Olsen and the Portland (OR) Fire Department are to be commended for a serious, real-world contribution–one that is sure to save lives. Maybe the best thing is that real firefighters developed a workable solution to a problem instead of having fake safety foisted on us by outsiders or pseudo fire experts. If we don`t chart our future, others will.

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