REM 244 Fireline Safety Heather Heward A state of mind • Safety is a state of mind • Safety is always the first priority • Safety is your responsibility Overview • • • • • • Physical fitness Proper equipment 10 standard firefighting orders 18 watchout situations Hazards Situational awareness Physical Fitness • Fire fighting is a demanding job which required you to be both mentally and physically fit • 2 parts of fitness • Aerobic fitness – related to oxygen intake, regulates work capacity • Muscular fitness – includes both strength and endurance • Being fit will allow you to be more tolerant of heat, acclimate faster, work with lower hart rates and body temperatures Fitness levels • Pack test is the only physical requirement • 3 miles • 45 pounds • 45 minutes • Recommended line crew 1.5 mile run 10:30 (min) Pull-ups 4-7 Sit-ups (60 sec.) 45 Pushups (60 sec.) 25 Physical fitness • Fitness tests • Fatigue • 2 to 1 work to rest • Heat stress and dehydration • Water and electrolytes • Smoke and carbon monoxide • Food and nutrition • 5,000 to 6,000 calories a day Heat stress Heat cramps Heat exhaustion Dehydration exhaustion Heat Stroke Symptoms Muscle cramps Weakness, extreme fatigue; wet, clammy skin; headache; nausea or collapse Weight loss, and excessive fatigue Hot, often dry skin; High body temperature; mental confusion, collapse, loss of consciousness Treatment Drink water, juice or a sports drink Same as heat Increase fluid cramps, rest in intake, rest the shade until body weight is restored Cool the body, treat for shock, seek medical attention Proper equipment • PPE • Wear it right • Fire shelter • Line gear • Personal gear PPE – required • Flame resistant shirt and pants • Made from Nomax or Kevlar • clean, no holes or tears and has no gas or oil stains. • Boots and socks • leather 8 inch (no steal toe) • cotton or wool socks • Hard hat • plastic, light weight… • Gloves • Leather, no gap between glove and shirt • Chaps • Hearing protection • Eye protection PPE – recommended • Wear a 2nd layer - typically cotton • Goggles • Hood or Shroud Fire Shelter • A fire shelter is a required piece of safety gear • Protects you by reflecting radiant heat and trapping air • THE SHELTER IS A LAST RESORT ONLY!!! Preparing for a wildland fire (line gear) • Nomex Shirt and Pants • All-leather 8” Boots with nonskid soles • Hardhat w/ headlamp clips and chin strap • Neck shroud • Headlamp and batteries • Fire Shelter • Radio and harness • Leather gloves • Eye protection • Hearing protection • Fusees and lighter • Compass and/or GPS • • • • • • • • • • • • • Canteens Extra batteries First aid kit Task book MRE or other food Fire line handbook Map/IAP TP Warm layer Rain gear Flagging Parachute cord Knife Preparing for a wildland fire (personal gear) • 2 set of nomex • Underwear, t-shirts, socks • Washcloth, towel, soap, shampoo • Toothbrush, tooth paste • Medications/vitamins • Money • Camera • Bathing suit • • • • • • • • • • Flashlight Knife Hat and gloves Warm layers Shower shoes Tent and sleeping bag Extra boot laces Handkerchiefs Book Street clothes 10 standard wildland firefighting orders • Developed in 1957 • Are absolute • Common reasons for breaking one of the orders • Ignorance – lack adequate training • Over confidence – excessive “can do” attitude • Lack of empowerment – thinking someone else will take care you • Work on making the firefighting orders instinctive 10 standard wildland firefighting orders FIRE BEHAVIOR 1. Keep informed on fire weather conditions and forecasts 2. Know what your fire is doing at all times 3. Base all actions on current and expected fire behavior FIRELINE SAFETY 4. Identify escape routes and safety zones, and make them known 5. Post lookouts when there is possible danger 6. Be alert. Keep calm. Think clearly. Act decisively ORGANIZATIONAL CONTROL 7. Maintain prompt communication with your forces, your supervisor and adjoining forces 8. Give clear instructions and be sure they are understood 9. Maintain control of your forces at all times IF YOU CONSIDER 1-9, THEN 10. Fight fire aggressively, having provided for safety first 10 standard wildland firefighting orders • Keep informed on fire weather conditions and forecasts • 2 types of weather information • Tactical – fire weather observations • Strategic • Spot weather forecasts • Long range forecasts 10 standard wildland firefighting orders • Know what the fire is doing at all times • Keep track of: • the location of the fire perimeter • the rate and direction of spread • fuel cover • fire behavior • location of fuel breaks • spotting • Obtain information from: • personal observation • Lookout • Supervisor 10 standard wildland firefighting orders • Base all actions on current and expected fire behavior • Constantly evaluate the fire behavior and detect subtle changes • 3 possible outcomes fire behavior: • stays the same • lessons • gets worse Make sure to have a plan for all three! 10 standard wildland firefighting orders • Identify escape routes and safety zones and make them known • Safety Zone: refuge from an unexpected change in fire behavior • Void of fuels • Not a deployment zone • Escape route: way you get personnel from where you are working to the safety zone • quick safe passage from your work site to the safety zone 10 standard wildland firefighting orders • Post lookouts when there is possible danger • Tasks: • • • • • Weather Fire behavior Smoke Communications Know crew location and tactics • • • • • • Belt weather kit Compass/GPS/Map Binoculars Radio and plenty of batteries Extra foul weather gear (sun or rain) Comfort • Tools • Lookouts should be knowledgeable in fire behavior and understand the significance of changes and identify hazardous situations 10 standard wildland firefighting orders • Be alert. Keep calm. Think clearly. Act Decisively • The key is to understand and avoid what may cause you to be less alert, to get overexcited, or to become mentally disorganized • To counteract this you should: • • • • • • Maintain self control Eat and drink correctly Get adequate rest Develop contingency plans Monitor the situation Take regular breaks 10 standard wildland firefighting orders • Maintain communications with your forces, your supervisor and adjoining forces • Ensures you can receive or report changes in instructions; warnings of changing conditions; changes in status; or progress reports. • extra batteries and a back up plan for communication 10 standard wildland firefighting orders • Give clear instructions and be sure they are understood • Be concise and clear when providing instructions • Ask to have instructions repeated if you do not understand them 10 standard wildland firefighting orders • Maintain control of your forces at all times • To help ensure this • Ensure your instructions are clear, concise and understood • Maintain communications • Know the location of your crew • Know the status of the fire • The key is to be prepared to react quickly and effectively to the unexpected 10 standard wildland firefighting orders • Fight fire aggressively, having provided for safety first • If you can not ensure you can fight the fire on your terms stop and reevaluate • To fight fire aggressively you must: • Lookout • Communication • Escape Route • Safety Zone • IRPG Watch out situations 1. Fire not scouted and sized up 2. In country not seen in daylight 3. Safety zones and escape routes not identified 4. Unfamiliar with weather and local factors influencing fire behavior 5. Uninformed on strategy, tactics and hazards 6. Instructions and assignments not clear 7. No communication link with crew members or supervisor Watch out situations 8. Constructing line without a safe anchor point 9. Building fireline downhill with fire below 10.Attempting frontal assault on fire 11.Unburned fuel between you and the fire 12.Cannot see the main fire; not in contact with someone who can 13.On a hillside where rolling material can ignite fuel below 14.Weather becoming hotter and drier Watch out situations 15.Wind increases and/or changes direction 16.Getting frequent spot fires across the fireline 17.Terrain and fuels make escape to safety zones difficult 18.Taking a nap near the fireline Common denominators in fire fatalities Denominator Why? Small fires or isolated sectors of larger fires. Firefighters underestimated the potential of the fire, failure to recognize subtle changes in weather conditions or fire behavior Light fuels Firefighters underestimate the extreme rates of spread and heat possible in light fuels Terrain Fires and heat moves up steep slopes and canyons with surprising speed Shift in wind direction or speed Not appreciating a predicted wind event. An unpredicted event occurs. Suppression tools such as helicopters affect wind Can cause flare ups or spotting across the fire line LCES • • • • L – Lookouts C – Communications E – Escape routes S – Safety zones • A simple way to help remember the key elements to survival LCES • The Lookout has to: • Know the location of the escape routes and safety zones • Be experienced enough to properly evaluate the present and potential fire behavior • Take weather readings • Understand the tactics and strategy • Always be able to see the fire • Handle other fire communication tasks • Look at the bigger picture LCES • Communications • See, track, record, interpret, anticipate and report. If the report is not made , all the other stuff is meaningless! • Fireline communication: • Incident name and IC • Immediate supervisor • Days plan • Days tactics • Safety zone and escape routes • Communication plan – channels and repeaters • AAR LCES • Escape Routes • One or more ways to exit danger • clearly identified • be clear of obstacles • short in length • not go up hill if possible • Decision (trigger) points - when you move to safety • Timed and practiced • Think about alternatives LCES • Safety Zones • A properly designated safety zone should not require the deployment of a fire shelter. • large enough to protect firefighters under worse than predicted fire behavior • As work progresses along the line new safety zones will have to be identified along with new escape routes. http://www.fire-ecology.org/research/images/small/_safety%20zone%205.jpg Fireline Hazards • • • • • • • • • • • Smoke and Dust Snags Stump holes Darkness Footing Rocks Branches/overhead hazards Weather Stobs/roots Pumps, tanks, hoses Bucket/retardant drops Vehicle hazards • Driving is the most dangerous component of fire fighting • • • • • • • • • • • • Fatigue Dust Unfamiliar routes Darkness Bridge weight limits Excessive traffic Parking Vehicle maintenance Emergency response speed i.e. the speed limit Local traffic laws Horse play Loose equipment on vehicle Aircraft Hazards • At the air field • Enter and exit • Follow instructions • Fireline • • • • • • Bucket/retardant drops Sling loads General recon Rotor wash Radio communications Ground contacts Other hazards • • • • • • • Ticks, snakes, and poison oak and ivy Power lines Hazmat People Animals Propane and Utilities Septic Wildland urban interface hazards • Hazardous materials – dangerous gases from burning material • Propane tanks – can act as bombs • Traffic – can be a major issue so drive carefully • Panicked public – help public move form harms way Human Hazards • • • • • • • • • • Attitude Physical conditioning Training levels Experience Fatigue Local knowledge Crew dynamics Chain of command Span of control Effective communications Human Factors • Common barriers to good listening: • • • • • Perceived opinions Distractions Filtering information Not listening Having an attitude Every firefighter is responsible for open, effective communication Five basic communication responsibilities • Briefings • The passing of general information • Debriefing • After an incident or event you ask questions of those involved to learn what happened • Warnings • Information about hazards is passed on • Acknowledge messages • You say you understand the information or orders • Questions • You ask for clarification After you receive an order • You should be able to answer the following: • • • • What task am I to perform? What are the known hazards? Where do I go to be safe? How do I get to this place? Situational awareness • Situational awareness is the gathering of information by observation or through communications • This means constantly reassessing the situation as things change • Factors that hinder your situational awareness • Inexperience • Stress • Fatigue • Attitude Final thoughts • Remember: • It is YOUR responsibility to be safe on the fireline • There are no stupid questions, if you don’t know ask • Work on your situational experience by reflecting back on the good, the bad the ugly. Review • Why is physical fitness important • List the main personal equipment items you need to be a safe firefighter • What are the categories of the 10 standard fire orders? What is the most important one? • What is the purpose of the 18 watchout situations and what should you do if you are breaking some? • What does a lookout do? • What is makes communication successful? • List several fireline, vehicle, aircraft, and human hazards • Situational awareness REM 244 The Incident Command System Heather Heward ICS - Definition • Organizational management system based on: • Successful business practices • Decades of lessons learned • Developed in the 1970’s after a series of catastrophic wildfire in California. • • • • • Unclear chain of command Poor communication between agencies Failure to outline clear objectives and action plans Lack of designated facilities Inability to expand and contract to fit situation ICS – Basic Features 1. Clear text and common terminology 2. Modular organization 3. Management objectives 4. Reliance on an Incident Action Plan (IAP) 5. Manageable span of control 6. Designated locations and facilities 7. Resources management 8. Integrated communications 9. Chain of command and utility of command 10.Unified command 11.Transfer of command 12.Accountability 13.Mobilization 14.Information and intelligence management Incident Commander and Staff • Manage entire incident • Ensure incident safety • Provide information to stakeholders • Establish and maintain contact with other participating agencies • Support staff • Public information officer • Safety officer • Liaison officer General staff General Staff – Operation section • Major functions • Implement tactics to achieve objectives • Assign resources and monitor progress • Report back • Organization positions • • • • • Staging area manager Operations branch director Division/Group supervisor Task Force/Strike team leader Single resources General Staff – Planning Section • Major functions • Gathering, analyzing, and distributing intelligence and information • IAP • Long-range and contingency planning • Maintaining documentation • Check in, tracking, and demob • Units • • • • Resources Situation Documentation Demobilization General Staff – Logistics Section • Major Functions • Ordering, obtaining, maintaining, and accounting for essential personnel, equipment, and supplies • Communication planning and equipment • Food services • Incident facilities • Support transportation • Medical services • Services branch • Communications • Medical • Food • Support Branch • Supply • Facilities • Ground support General Staff – Finance section • Major functions • • • • Negotiating and monitoring contracts Timekeeping Analyzing costs Injury and property damage compensation • Units • • • • Time Procurement Compensation/claims Cost Common Responsibilities • Resource Order • • • • • • • • Incident name Location Assignment Base phone number Reporting date, time, location Communication (frequencies) Special support requirements Travel authorization Common Responsibilities • Check in • Keep track of resources • Prepare for future paperwork • Initial incident briefing • • • • • • • Current situation Job responsibilities Location of work area Communication Coworkers Eating and sleeping arrangements Procedure for resupply Common Responsibilities • Common duties during operational period • Acquire needed materials • Organize and brief subordinates • Debrief • Demobilization • • • • • • Brief replacement resources Performance evaluations Check-out Return equipment Post-incident reports Payment paperwork Discussion Questions • What is the purpose of the Incident Command System? • When and where was it developed? • What are the support staff groups for the IC? • What are some major roles of each of the general staff of the Incident Command Team? • What should be included in the initial briefing on arrival at an incident?