Week 8: LODD – Training Events   

Review the NIOSH – F2011-12: Volunteer Fire Fighter Dies after Falling From a Rope – Minnesota and NIOSH – F2007-9: Career Probationary Fire Fighter Dies While Participating in a Live-Fire Training Evolution at an Acquired Structure – Maryland reports. 

Did the conclusions in this report offer recommendations for future prevention of similar incidents? What relation did established regulations and standards have to the events surrounding these fatalities? Why does there seem to be such a high number of fatalities at training events when we can control the variables of the situation?

 

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#1

 

 

Did the conclusions in this report offer recommendations for future prevention of similar incidents? What relation did established regulations and standards have to the events surrounding these fatalities? Why does there seem to be such a high number of fatalities at training events when we can control the variables of the situation?

 

In this week’s reading, which took place in Minnesota on May 23, 2011, a firefighter fell off of a rope hauling system injuring himself. During the breakdown process of the class the firefighter decided to climb without proper PPE. Loosing contact with a rope, the firefighter fell hitting his head on the pavement. Due to the severity of the blunt force trauma to his head the patient later died.

 

The report offered recommendations to prevent further incidents such as the one on May 23, 2011. Some recommendations focused on ensuring that a safety officer is present during training situations. I agreed with this because in addition to having instructors another person attached to the department can be used as a safety officer to eliminate possible safety concerns. Training is supposed to be conducted in a safe controlled environment. We use the same concept on an emergency scene so why not keep the same safety aspect throughout training. 

 

Another recommendation given from NIOSH was to have PPE established for training and the use of it. The report stated that the firefighter did not have any PPE on during the accident. PPE is there to protect us from substantial injury. Most likely if the firefighter was wearing proper headgear it would have been a barrier between the asphalt and his head lessening the trauma. The report also advised on having the proper instructor to student ratio during certain training. It was stated that the proper ratio was 5 students to 1 instructor. The fire chief decided that he and the instructor were able to achieve the level suitable for safety with 19 students and was entirely wrong.  The difference that I found in this report that was unique from the others were the fact that other firefighters played a role in this incident as well. 

 

We as firefighters sometimes like to enforce the rules but not play by them. We have to start holding ourselves and each other accountable. If the other two firefighters spoke to the individual before climbing maybe it could have deterred him from doing so or maybe not. I think the injuries at any given training is higher because its either being complacent assuming that the event is 100 percent safe or not complying with the standards for student to teacher ratio. This incident as well as many others could have been avoided.  

 

#2

 

Did the conclusions in this report offer recommendations for future prevention of similar incidents? 

 

Yes, it did and with that being said most fire departments have these policies in place. But with the volunteer department they may not have the luxury that paid departments’ have all the certified personnel to fill the safety roles. So sometimes the corner are cut to meet training needs which means at times safety is disregarded.

 

What relation did established regulations and standards have to the events surrounding these fatalities?

 

Both events the had lack of safety and did not meet the NFPA recommendations for training. They also didn’t have the proper instructors for the training.  Also seem liked they are not doing the proper screening to make sure they are fit to do the job and training. 

 

Why does there seem to be such a high number of fatalities at training events when we can control the variables of the situation? 

 

Because in the fire world we become lax on the job and instead of taking serious and learning and teaching the newer guys our knowledge we tend to see training as a choir and go through the motion to complete it. Yes, we can control the variable by following protocols and assigning a safety office and having proper instructors for all the students and stress safety at all times.

 
 
 

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