I finally got the chance to watch this hangout the other day, and I feel overall it is very good and the message overall is relevant.
Eddie hit a lot of points that I think needed to be said and that a lot of us have been arguing over. The biggest misconception of SLICERS is that it is an exterior fire model. That simply is NOT the case and Eddie spoke on that very well. He also stated that RECEO and SLICERS match up and I TOTALLY agree with that statement. When I first read SLICERS I thought it was a great engine company acronym and that RECEO still had a very good place for the incident commander, so I am glad that person’s way smarter than me see that.
The topic then shifted to tactics when one of the questions was asked about no one can compare to the FDNY because of the staffing levels. Ray in my opinion and with all due respect still does not see the truth in this, even making the statement that in the FDNY the hose stretch is made by a pipeman, officer, back up man, and someone at the door which is a small number of people. In order for me to get that many people on the hose line it would take 2 engine companies! Some other departments it would take even more. I agree with Eddie that we all need to know the same “skills” (forcing doors, stretching lines, venting, searching) I would even argue we need to know them a little better as we often operate with lower numbers and minimal back up. However the “tactics” are not and can not be the same! We must approach our fires differently based on the staffing levels.
When I worked part-time in a department where I was a driver only (alone on the rig), making entry was not an option, while I still needed to stretch a line, pump the truck, and vent the window closest to the fire area skill wise the TACTIC used was much different that the 4 person hose team would have been able to accomplish.
One thing I did agree with Ray on is that there are certain construction types an exterior hit may not work, which is why he initially came up with DICERS. I couldn’t agree more, and I do think that is a portion that the SLICERS model may have missed (even though size up is the first letter) the building is still something that plays a huge role in how we do what we do.
This in my opinion was a very good discussion with respectful opinions brought forth, which to be honest I did not expect as Ray often (again my opinion) comes off condescending and narrow-minded when expressing his opinion. No doubt Ray is smart, experienced, and one hell of a fireman but I have always found his brand of expression a bit insulting, yet informative it is a very weird dynamic I have with his writings and opinion. One minute I am emailing everyone I know a great article he has written the next we are arguing on twitter about something he wrote or said.
Give this hangout a watch and make sure you always keep your department in mind whenever you learn a skill or tactic.
As usual thanks for reading, spread the word, and STAY SAFE!