Pregnant Firefighters: What Men and Women Need to Know

By: Robert Avsec, Executive Fire Officer All fire chiefs and their officers SHOULD BE REQUIRED to read up on this case. Chicago Fire’s Nursing Mother Case Moves Forward Women have a right to become firefighters and paramedics. They have a right to become pregnant and start a family. And they have legal rights to protect them and their jobs and ...

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Clan Behavior and it’s Influence on Fire Service Culture

I submit for your consideration that fire department leaders will not find the “fix” until they recognize that those new members (outsiders) are being exposed to the behaviors and expectations of the firehouse clan from Day #1 with a department. Who’s teaching them in those entry-level training programs? Who’s working with them at the firehouse when they come on board?

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Interior Firefighting is Becoming Obsolete—We Just Don’t Know It

I’m not saying that firefighting as a whole is becoming obsolete, but I am proposing that we need to get out of the “pot” before we become boiled. Our approach to interior structural firefighting needs some serious restructuring lest we will only see more firefighters encountering flashovers upon arrival, structures weakened to their collapse point before firefighters arrive, and firefighters developing cancers more frequently from airborne and skin exposure hazards.

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Fire Chief Alan Brunacini

With Fire Ground Command, Bruno taught an entire generation of fire officers and firefighters how to take people, equipment, apparatus, water, etc., and bring it all together in a coordinated effort to extinguish fires.

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PTSD – The Changes No One Told You About

This whole PTSD thing is more than what any shrink could possibly tell us. Seriously. They all know the basics of it, the science of it, the consequences and more of it. Hey! They even made a nice medical chart, like a checklist of symptoms to be able to diagnose this injury… but what the hell do they do with us after? Do they really get it?

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Community Risk Reduction: What Should It Mean for Your Community?

By: Robert Avsec, Executive Fire Officer The other day, I came across a very informative and thought-provoking article on LinkedIn about Community Risk Reduction (CRR). As stated in the article, CRR is a “hot topic” for fire departments and emergency management professionals. The following is a quick synopsis of the key points covered by the author of the article. Is ...

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Bullying and Harassment in the Fire Service: A Video Misses the Mark

Bullying and harassment in the fire service, as those behaviors are in the general population, are about power and control. Those individuals who engage in bullying or harassment do so because they want to maintain the status quo or they're seeking to elevate their status among their peers or they're insecure in their position of official power (officers). In my opinion, these elements are inter-related just as fuel, heat, and oxygen are critical elements necessary for combustion. If we can successfully remove these elements in our organizations, we can make the fire (bullying and harassment) go out for good.

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