This picture speaks volumes! Often times in todays high technology world where there is an “app” for everything we forget some of the basic yet vital tasks that need to be mastered in order for us to do our job.
Usually when it comes to training people either want to do the “sexy” stuff, or nothing at all. Sure the sexy stuff like stokes basket training, haul systems, rappelling, air bags, and elaborate scenario based training is good, but in order to be succesful at those things we have to master our basic firefighting skills.
Things like tying knots, pulling lines, air pack familiarization, etc. are our bread and butter and need to be trained on over and over again until we can not get it wrong. Think how succesful would a stokes basket operation be if you can not tie a figure 8 on a bite? ( A basic knot).
At the basics of this job engine companies put fires out, and special service companies (trucks, squads, and rescues) break stuff and find people. So if you focus a majority of your training on putting fires out, breaking stuff, and finding people (with a little EMS thrown in there) you will find that the more complicated things will come easier.
Take a look at the video below, the only way you can operate with maximum efficiency like this guy is to be fully trained on your basic skills. He didn’t have to think about how to throw a ladder, vent a window, vent a roof, or what tools to bring he knew what to do through countless hours of training and repetition. The example is out there we just have to follow it!
So make sure you are getting in a minimum of 1 hour of training a day, hands on is more preferable but going over an SOG/SOP, EMS protocol, or round tabling a recent fire, or article can be just as valuable. Bottom line is NO ONE is good enough at this to rest on past accomplishments, not FDNY, not DCFD, not Chicago or any other big name department. All those bigger departments are training every shift with a huge call load why is it that those of us in less busy departments can never seem to find the time? It is just one hour a day, you can make it happen!
I am very interested to know what those of you out there are doing for your 1 hour of training on your shifts. Tweet me @averagejakeff and use the hash tag #1hourHOT , or just email me you can find the address in the contact tab at the top of the page.
As usual thanks for reading, spread the word, and STAY SAFE!