Communications Drill with DCFD RS.3 Video

Arrival video from D.C. offers opportunity to train on sizeup report expectations.

It may be boring to you, without any audio and a clear view of the action, but this video of Rescue Squad 3 arriving at a Southeast apartment fire can offer the opportunity for your crews to drill on what specifics should be transmitted as part of the initial sizeup report.

Consider the video action in general and ask the following:

If we are not the first due or first arriving engine company, what should we expect to hear from the engine company that is first?

What particulars about the fire building (any) should we hear?

Suppose we are the second arriving engine company. Do our SOP's provide direction on where we should position our apparatus? What should be transmitted once we arrive on the scene?

If we are a ladder company or rescue/squad company, what do we need to listen for while responding? Once we arrive on the scene what is expected from us?

If you are a chief officer responding, what 'benchmarks' if any, are you listening for? Do you issue tactical orders even before you arrive or only after you arrive on the scene?

Related from FireRescue Magazine:

"Radio Reports: A Review"
Communications such as initial-arriving radio reports and progress reports provide command with much-needed fireground information. Greg Jakubowski, January 2012

"Engine Company Size-Up & IAP Development"
First-in engine companies are often tasked with both size-up & initial fireground operations. Greg Jakubowski, May 2010

"Drills for Practicing How to Describe Fireground Conditions"
Fireground performance will be improved if your crew demonstrates consistency in sizing up what they see upon arrival. Homer Robertson, October 2010

"Situational Awareness Ensures a Safe Operation"
SA is being aware of everything that's happening & could happen on the fireground. Robert Dube, January 2008


Bill Carey is the daily news and blog manager for Elsevier Public Safety (FireRescue Magazine/Firefighter Nation, JEMS and LawOfficer sites.) Bill also manages the network and is a former volunteer lieutenant with the Hyattsville Volunteer Fire Department in Prince George's County, Maryland.

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