Tag Archives: risk reduction

What’s wrong with this picture?

By: Robert Avsec, Executive Fire Officer A couple of years ago, I wrote a piece entitled, Stop Romanticizing Firefighting. Apparently some people didn’t get the memo. Source: YouTube, https://youtu.be/znBtV5t4j9U This video was posted on a Facebook Group I follow with the caption “Fearless.” Along with a bazillon hastags: #firefighter #fireman #rescue #firstresponder #thinredline #firedept #firelife #firefighters #firerescue #firetruck #firestation #firemen #fire#wildlandfirefighters #firstrespondertaskforce For me, fearless is not the first word that came to ...

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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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3 Giant Steps for First Responder Mental Health Issues


Too many firefighters and EMS providers still adhere to a mind-set that mental health issues are something that happens to other people, but not them. Because to believe otherwise requires them to admit their own human frailties. They rely on this sense of denial about the realities of mental health risks as a “shield”, but it’s a “paper shield” at best.

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EVO Program: Regulating Your Fire Department’s Driving Risks

By: Robert Avsec, Executive Fire Officer Several years ago, at a fire service conference, I attended a session on reducing risk in fire departments. The presenter, whose name escapes me, make a statement that really stuck with me, “You cannot manage or eliminate risk in this business, but you can regulate it.” He went on to explain that regulating meant ...

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What They Don’t Know, But We Do

We're not "carrying the day" with effective public fire and life safety programs that provide the factual information about residential fire sprinklers. We're allowing the builders and developers to promulgate the "half-truths" and myths.

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Firefighters and Cancer

A powerful piece of prose about one firefighter's "come to Jesus" moment with firefighters and cancer. An equally powerful message about how everyone in the fire service needs to "get on the bus" concerning firefighting and the dramatically increased risk of developing cancer we--and our families--face.

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