I’m going t be real careful about how I word this post as not to offend anyone. But I have to admit, I have been shaking my head about some posts for a while now and regarding some comments to posts.

I know that the new ‘stuff’ coming from Ul, NIST, ISFSI and others is not popular with some, and I’m fine with that. I have no problem with that at all.

I know and understand that some in the fire service may have taken their tactics to one extreme or another for varying reasons that we will not fully understand. We have preached for years about the difference between reckless and aggressive to support, and rightly so, aggressive firefighting because some take it to the extreme. But, that doesn’t stop us from training and using smart, calculated, aggressive tactics based on conditions.

Why is it different with some of the new considerations? I’ve not been all over this country so I cannot directly discount that the fire service in places may have taken this consideration to the extreme, just as I mentioned above, but towards the other end. But, the effect has been incredible.

I read about firefighters wanting to quit being firefighters. Really?

I read about how they just can’t go on in this new fire service. Really?

From what I see on Youtube, Facebook, blog posts, articles, training classes, forums, etc. aggressive firefighting is still alive and well and is not going anywhere anytime soon. The large majority of material that I see is interior firefighting.

I don’t see the wide spread epidemic that is being portrayed on some of the posts and pages of social media talking about how awful the fire service is. I am in awe of the some that speak of this doom and gloom and to be quite honest, I expect more from some.

I can tell you that you, a page, a class, a curriculum, a post or blog WILL NOT define MY fire service! I will define my fire service! If I don’t like what you or anyone else is doing, it certainly is not going to cause me to slump my shoulders and think about another career! That is weak!

We’ve been down this road before and for all intents and purposes, we still fight fire the same way we did for years with a few tweeks. For those that are reporting the sky falling, are you being forced to perform new tactics at your department? Or, like me at my department, is just an option based on the situation? I would bet the large majority are the in same boat as me with the latter response.

Things are going to come out you don’t like and I’m fine with discussion and questioning things. What I find troubling is the mind set that this is the fall of the fire service as we knew and know it. I think you’re wrong and would be willing to bet that the large majority of fire departments in this country will still be making aggressive interior attacks at most fires for years to come.

So, get off your poor pitty me train and do what you do, fight fires! Train and pass on what you know and your experiences. But for all things honest and pure, quit feeling sorry for the fire service, it is just fine and will continue to be long after we’re gone. We need differing opinions, but if a differing opinion causes you to question your career, I think there are bigger issues.

I love the fire service, the good, the bad and the ugly. I love the fire service, the stuff I like and agree with and the stuff I don’t like and disagree with. But I can tell you this, I’m not leaving anytime soon!


  • Bill Carey says:

    Well written Jason; nice job.

    Bill Carey

  • Chris Sterricker says:

    Great read Jason. I liken this issue to the recent unfortunate events in Kentucky in which a firefighter was killed and another, his mother, seriously injured when struck at the scene of a car fire. The response to the tragedy was for the fire department to immediately institute a complete shut-down policy of any incident being worked in the roadway. It totally disregards research (more science stuff) that says the chances of a secondary incident increase exponentially the longer travel lanes are closed. Perhaps the department doesn’t understand this. Perhaps they haven’t received any training. Perhaps, due to an emotional reaction, their way is better and will not be changed. It’s all the same thing. Many firefighters don’t fully understand the new science. Perhaps they’ve only heard bits and pieces about it and have not had any formal training on the issue. Perhaps an emotional response is elicited and there is no way you’re going to tell them the way they’ve been doing it has a better solution. As we all know, it’s the emotional issues that are the hardest to overcome.

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