When you did your early training, did you make a lot of mistakes? If so, you likely learned more from the screw-ups than anything else. It was valuable experience. And hard to replace effectively. But my guest today says a lot of today’s younger firefighters are short-cutting that training— and missing the point—by using the internet. Benjamin Martin is a Lieutenant with a large metro fire department in Virginia. With over sixteen years in public safety, he speaks around the country on...
With more and more firefighters being injured as they work to ventilate roofs during a structure fire, we need to ask:Why are we still putting crews up there in the first place? Is it time to admit that vertical ventilation is an obsolete concept? Our guest this week says it is. Mark Cotter is a third generation firefighter, who entered the fire service in 1974. He’s served in several departments, including one in which he rose to fire chief. In 2002 Mark joined the Salisbury Maryland Fire...
If you or someone you know had a broken arm, you’d want it treated right away. Well, PTSD or clinical depression are no different. Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean you can ignore it. And just like a broken arm, it is absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. Here to talk about why that stigma exists and how to overcome it is Todd Donovan. He’s a firefighter/paramedic for the Derry Fire Department and a Data Specialist for the New Hampshire Fire Academy and EMS.
Sometimes it seems that engine companies don’t always get the respect they deserve. It may be rescue squad crews or truckies that feel engine crews have a simple job: put the wet stuff on the red stuff. But this show's guest says he’s seen those guys have change of heart when they pay attention to what engine companies really do. Jarrod Sergi is a Lieutenant with Norfolk Virginia Fire Rescue. He’s been in the Fire Service for close to 18 years and has served in one of the city’s busiest...
We’ve been talking over the past few weeks on this show about whether firefighters have become too risk-averse. But there are also some department cultures that condone overly risky behavior. It’s not in the SOPs or SOGs – culture is an unwritten feeling or understanding of what firefighters expect to do. How do we balance safety with being aggressive firefighters? Scott's guest to discuss this is J. Travis Carricato.
If you’re of a certain age, you were probably strongly influenced to become a firefighter-paramedic by a couple of guys named Johnny and Roy, the two heroes of the 1970’s TV show “Emergency!” They played a couple of the country’s first firefighter-paramedics. The characters on that show were good role models. Our guest says we could use some of their attitude these days. Mike Rubin’s a paramedic in Nashville, Tennessee.
If you’re a company officer or a command-level officer, you know the job is all about decision-making. The trick, of course, is to make good, defensible decisions in a big hurry at a chaotic scene. How do you do it? Scott's guest has some ideas that could help you make the right decisions under pressure. Nick Salameh is a 36-year veteran of the fire service. Thirty-one of those years were spent with the Arlington County, Virginia, Fire Department.
We’ve talked several times on this show about working with younger firefighters. But we haven’t heard their viewpoint. That’s about to change. Millennials are sometimes a mystery to previous generations. They learn differently, they react differently. They relate differently. Here to offer some advice to the new guys is a millennial who’s been around long enough to have seen the mistakes young firefighters make. Tom Redden is 26. He’s been a Firefighter/ EMT with the Flanders Fire Department...
How do you conduct a primary search? It’s one of the most critical actions a firefighter can undertake at a fire. It’s also a dangerous task. There are several ways to conduct them. On this episode, Paul Mastronardi goes over a few tips on safely conducting a search.
The number of women in the fire service seems to be stalled at about four percent, despite efforts to recruit more. Why is this, and what can be done? Cheryl Horvath addresses that question and discusses what she thinks of the term “Brotherhood” on this episode of Code 3.
Do you go above and beyond, not for the praise, but because it’s necessary? Maybe you're a grinder. TJ Ward joins Scott to explain the grinder mindset. It’s an attitude that says—good enough is never good enough. And grinders absolutely do not believe in leaving anything to luck or chance.
What does it mean to “own it?” To a firefighter, it should mean taking pride in their job, and taking initiative to ensure it’s done right. Guest Andrew Sauder says that’s lacking among some younger firefighters, and it’s up to the more experienced crew to make sure they learn to own it.
What if you had unlimited funds to design and build the ultimate fire engine for your department? Yours would undoubtedly look different than one designed halfway across the country. My guest on this show is Ricky Riley. We discuss what features he’d like to see on the ultimate fire engine.
We all know we’re facing fewer structure fires these days… but the ones that do ignite are more dangerous than ever. More lumber is being used, and, worse yet, it’s not the old-style 2x4 or 4x4. The lumber industry is turning to manufactured lumber. It’s also called lightweight lumber. Our guest to talk about the danger of today’s wood construction is Mark van der Feyst.
On this episode, we discuss a major line-of-duty-death incident: the loss of the Charleston Nine. It happened on the evening of June 18, 2007, at the Sofa Super Store in Charleston, South Carolina. About 40 minutes into the call, there was a flashover, and the roof collapsed. Firefighters caught in the flashover were unable to escape and were trapped under the collapsed roof. My guest was there. Dr. David Griffin is a battalion chief today, but he was the engineer on the first-due engine on...
How do you conduct a primary search? I’ll bet you do it by having the whole search crew follow the walls, staying in a line, right? Doesn’t that seem a little slow and even wasteful? My guest on this episode says yes, and he says the oriented search is the way to do it. Chris DelBello is a third-generation firefighter and a 30-year veteran of the fire service.
When you’ve got a great plan, but some team members just aren’t quite on board, how do you get them to meet your expectations? Dr. Liane Davey is back to give us some tips on how to make that happen on this episode.
On this show, we talk with Cindie Schooner-Ball, who retired a couple years back from a firefighting career that began in1987. She writes a blog, titled, “Sister in a Brotherhood,” and is working on a book by the same name. Find out what it was like for a woman in the fire service back in the day.
When a man climbed into a narrow pipe and then became trapped 12 feet below ground, New Jersey rescue crews found a difficult situation. Mike Daley explains how they extricated the man from the pipe, while trying to limit damage to the wastewater facility’s infrastructure.