Basic Firefighter Safety – Best Practices

If you speak to any fire-fighter with some years of experience, they may be reluctant to confess it but the number of fire-fighter casualties in America is increasing by the year. Whether on the actual fire scene, illness or by suicide, the numbers are climbing and in turn so must the precautions and safety measures taken to protect and save lives. This arrangement of insight has been made to explain how to practice fire-fighter safety by using what is known as the Closed-Loop Approach.

FireThe very first component of this approach is the Daily safety movement. At the firehouse when the beginning of each shift commences, all of the key officers along with the senior personnel members will compare plans for the day as a start-of-shift gathering. The objective behind this meeting is to improve, advise and instruct on well-being awareness in all facets of the fire-fighters’ lives.

Normally, one safety moment per week is centered on the fire-fighters and their officers being able to introduce or update the results of assigned queries they were to have completed answering for this time. Basically, each week there is a selection of material presented and several pieces are left out in order to designate them to others in hopes they can answer and present them accordingly.

The second aspect of the Closed-Loop Approach is the Safety Committee. This panel will meet once a month and usually consists of 19 members. The meet is promoted and coordinated by a health, safety and environmental officer. There is normally a very free stream of information being passed around with little spoken by the senior officer who will be attending. The fire-fighters who prefer to be the most vocal are usually selected to share any concerns or additional information that might be necessary. Thorough notes are made and documented as environmental dangers, safety and health are all subjects of discussion. The date, safety concerns, the presenter’s name, the groups or persons assigned to follow up on issues as well as other details are all written down on a spreadsheet.

Next will be the fire-fighter executive and safety behavioral audits which come each month. The officer of safety will carry out around 25% of the individual safety behavioral audits for the division. The Lieutenants and the Chief will authorize the efficiency of the audits and the fire-fighters who are chosen are done so by a computer arbitrarily. Comments on the audits are noted and discussed upon normally if they are negative and if positive they are used to reinforce the fire-fighter.  More information can be found here.

Incident reporting is the subsequent method of approach. These are made at any time there is a safety incident, equipment malfunction, a near miss, etc. They are not created to find the human errors but rather for learning tools in order to improve a safer working atmosphere.

The second last method in the approach is the Six “S” (6S).safety involvements and it stands for set in order, scrub and shine, sort, standardize, safety and sustain. These exercises were designed to develop character, communications and teamwork. The 6S ratings can be linked to the officers’ yearly functionality assessment and eventually their annual compensation.

The final part of the Closed-Loop Approach is the visual safety messages. These are created to grab the attention of every fire-fighters’ senses through the use of bulletin boards that are positioned in tactical locations in order to convey a clear safety message to everyone. Although passive suggestions, they are still very compelling and effective in sustaining a safety message to everyone at the firehouse.

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