On-Duty Checklist “The IDIOTS of the Fire Service”

When reporting to the firehouse, are you ready for a shift change FIRE? Have you prepared for the FIRE that will happen just as you relieve the off going firefighter? We must look at a Tour Of Duty/24 Hour Watch in the firehouse like a marathon. We must show up READY! You just don’t wake up one day and say, I’m going to run a marathon today. No, you train, train, and train some more. You prepare and plan out all 26 MILES, just as you should be training for the marathon that will happen while On-Duty. It doesn’t happen every watch, but it does happen, and usually on a  day when you least expect it.

photoAre you ready for the early morning/shift change fire? Are you scrambling when the tones drop? Do you put your gear next to the rig first thing? This could be your first call of the day….

You walk in the door and tell the off going firefighter sitting at the kitchen table  “I Got Ya”, and a minute later you get toned out for the worst fire of your career. The question is, did this firefighter already store his or her gear away in their locker, and have you even gotten your gear out of your locker before saying “I Got Ya”?  Are you ready for the early morning/shift change fire? Are you scrambling when the tones drop? Do you put your gear next to the rig first thing? This could be your first call of the day…

This job is for REAL, and is not very forgiving when you fail to prepare and take it seriously. You must respect your fellow brothers and sisters, and the civilians that are relying on you to be READY! Being ready to be On-Duty, starts before you arrive at the firehouse, it starts when you decide to be a firefighter, and chose a career to SERVE OTHERS!!

On-Duty Checklist for 2015

1. Do you eat properly the night before your watch?

2. Do you properly hydrate?

3. Do you get a good nights sleep or were you up all night at your SIDE JOB?

4. Do you shower and shave before leaving the house?

5. Do you show up in uniform, or get to work early so you can be in uniform?

6. Do you go straight to your gear and put it next to the rig?

7. Do you ask for a proper pass down before you say “I Got Ya”?

8. Once you say “I Got Ya” do you start checking the rig or eat breakfast first?

9. Do you confirm your SCBA is FULL and READY?? Actually turn it on and breathe from it?

10. Do you confirm your 911 System works?? That would be your portable radio!

The above 10 steps should be completed before the off going firefighter even leaves the firehouse..

If you are a Firefighter and you are overweight, WHAT ARE YOU DOING ABOUT IT??
We do not care about EXCUSES….. Manage what you eat and burn more calories.
I have watched the BIGGEST LOSER, and it can be D O N E!!!  If you are overweight, everyone sees you and wonders if you will be able to get the job done at crunch time. The majority of LODDs are from firefighters being overweight and out of shape. If you are overweight and are spending you’re time talking about those that are trying to make the fire service better, you are an IDIOT!!  The definition of IDIOT is a person considered stupid, foolish, or ignorant.

If you are in shape and take this job seriously, THANK YOU!

The link below is an article I wrote a while back. I am very proud that I did not succumb to the IDIOT mentality.  If you are a young firefighter and love this job, please do not give up. Do not let those that view working at the Fire Department as JUST a JOB keep you from training and doing the right thing. Just because they come in to work with a three day beard and sit at the kitchen table for hours before putting their gear next the rig, doesn’t make it right. Even if they have 20 years on the job, it just means they are a 20 year IDIOT. If you are a firefighter and your Company Officer doesn’t wear their gear, or gets off the rig on fire calls without an SCBA, they are an IDIOT. You must make a mental note of all the IDIOTS you work with for your own SAFETY.


Curt Isakson

2 thoughts on “On-Duty Checklist “The IDIOTS of the Fire Service”

  1. Thank you I hate being overweight . Good motivation .always put gear on first thing and check pass devices, but don’t usually turn on the portable.i will now.

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