> I watched the season premiere of COPS saturday night. I saw something (several
> things actually) that I was not too happy about, I think. For those who
> see the episode, I will summarize. The officer in question was dispatched to
> a house fire. When he got on scene, there was flames coming from the roof
> (more on this in a minute) with heavy smoke obscuring vision. He ran to the
> front door and banged on it. There were bars on the door (not a good
> neighborhood). He proceeded to break out the front windows, also barred (kind
> of... heavy frames too small to squeeze through), with his billy club. He
> yelled and convinced the lady to open the door. She was relunctent. When she
> finally did they went into the house followed by the camera man. After a
> or so, they evacated.
> It was the wrong house.
> The smoke and flame looked like it was from the 1st house but is was actually
> from the house behind (or something like that). The cop and camera man ran
> around to where the real fire was. Several of his associates were in the
> burning structure STANDING STRAIGHT UP looking for victims. He might have
> followed them in but I'm not sure. Very quickly they exited the structure
> coughing and hacking all the way.
> I believe they did the following things wrong:
> 1. Broke out the windows of the 1st house. If it was on fire, you now have a
> well ventilated fire.
> 2. Did not remove the lady from the structure but instead discussed it with
> 3. Entered a possibly burning structure with no idea if there is a
rescue to be
> 4. Entered an actual burning structure:
> a. Standing up
> b. No appearant rescue needed.
> 5. Didn't take fire extinguisher, flashlight, or anything useful.
> I realize I don't have the full story and much of it is out of context, but it
> looked like they could have made a bad situation a whole lot worse by possibly
> increasing the size of the fire (structure 1) and setting themselves up to be
> victims (both structures).
> Any comments ? Dare I say, Flame away ? (Bad pun)
In my 25 years on the FD, I've seen where police are literally "forced" to
take some kind of action immediately, right or wrong. In defense of the
coppers, consider that usually they are first on the scene because they
are already, at times, on the road and in the neighborhood.
Unfortunately, they become the first authority figure and expectations are
high from citizens and specatators alike. To do the "right" thing, and
wait for properly equipped personnel, is a nightmare when John Q. Public
is demanding action RIGHT NOW. As a result, the cops find that more times
than not they elect to DO SOMETHING, as opposed to DO NOTHING.
I'd like to see a little cross training so that the cop first on the scene
might have a few immediate functions to perform safely, with some
training, and even some early-arrival equipment.
I know how it feels when it takes a few minutes to get water, and it
seems like hours. Or when you're waiting for and ambulance, cop or fire
response, 5 minutes ALWAYS seems like 20.
Of course, all the rest of us are perfect all the time, on every call.
:-) I'm just glad I don't have a camera following me around!
(Richard C. Ornberg ) ( DPFD Since 1971)
(Ornberg & Associates ) ( orn...@mcs.com )
(1401 Oakton Street )
(Des Plaines, IL 60018 )
>The name of the show says it all....COPS! It is in my personal opinion
>that the boys and girls in blue's responsibility is to assure that the
>fire department is on the way, assure the safety of any victims that have
>already exited the fire, determine if EMS is needed, if someone is
>still in the fire, determine from those who have escaped where the person
>is located (possibly) and relay that information to the first arriving
>fire suppression company. Then they can perform traffic control. Cops
>are notorious for being first on the scene because: 1) there are more of
>them than there are of us, 2) they are already on the streets while we
>have to get to ou vehicles, and 3)they drive worse than we do (compare
>PD vs FD accident statistics). It is incumbent on all fire departments
>to train the cops on what they should do in a fire/medical emergency. But
>then again, in fromt of the cameras, when a cop or a firefighter wants to
>be a hero....we all do something stupid! That's show biz!
I can't say I've seen the show you're talking about, but I saw some
show last night (I think it was Real Stories of the Highway Patrol or
something) where the cops show up, some guy's been shot and is dying
on the sidewalk. Cops are the first ones on the scene of course and instead
of helping the guy out, they went about sniffing for clues in the shooting
like a casing that they found lying on the sidewalk.
It was a couple minutes before the F.D. showed up to save the guy, and the
guy died later that evening. Just food for thought..
-------/ "I'm shufflin' thru the Texas sand, +Peter Zurich -- Jr. in Eng/CS+
====/==// but my head's in Mississippi..." | NCSA Mosaic Tech Support |
/--//--------------------------------- | University of Illinois |
//==================================== +-----at Urbana-Champaign-----+
The name of the show says it all....COPS! It is in my personal opinion
that the boys and girls in blue's responsibility is to assure that the
fire department is on the way, assure the safety of any victims that have
already exited the fire, determine if EMS is needed, if someone is
still in the fire, determine from those who have escaped where the person
is located (possibly) and relay that information to the first arriving
fire suppression company. Then they can perform traffic control. Cops
are notorious for being first on the scene because: 1) there are more of
them than there are of us, 2) they are already on the streets while we
have to get to ou vehicles, and 3)they drive worse than we do (compare
PD vs FD accident statistics). It is incumbent on all fire departments
to train the cops on what they should do in a fire/medical emergency. But
then again, in fromt of the cameras, when a cop or a firefighter wants to
be a hero....we all do something stupid! That's show biz!
Been there...done that!
They drive MORE than you do, not worse. To have a valid comparison, you
would have to look at accidents per mile driven, not a raw number. The
reason they are on the street is because police are supposed to patrol
for crime. This entails driving around. The more you drive, the more
likely it is that you are going to get in an accident. The more you
drive with LAS, the more you are going to get into an accident. OTOH,
being a firefighter, you can be reasonably sure that your recliner is
not going to be involved in an accident.
It is incumbent on all fire departments
FJ>to train the cops on what they should do in a fire/medical emergency. But
FJ>then again, in fromt of the cameras, when a cop or a firefighter wants to
FJ>be a hero....we all do something stupid! That's show biz!
And if the officers had stood outside of the building, there would be
someone on here whining about how they let those people just die. It
takes far more courage for police officer to go into a burning building
than it does for a firefighter to do so. Far from your ridicule, you
should be commending this man for going above and beyond the call of
duty to try to save someone's life.
In sum, you should be ashamed of yourself for your snide, self serving
* OLX 2.1 TD * --T-A+G-L-I+N-E--+M-E-A+S-U-R+I-N-G+--G-A+U-G-E--
At any rate, the point is that cops are trained to be cops and
because they're out there driving around the streets while most
firefighters are at the station, they sometimes arive first on scene.
Most cops have about 800 horus in law enforcement training so that
they don't get barbequed by some robber with a bazooka. They don't
know much about fires.
So the cops show up first and have two choices: 1) Do the best they
can given their limited knowledge of fires. 2) Stand outside and wait
for the firefighters and leave the general public PO'd because the
cops let somebody die when they could have done something.
The bottom line is that those of us in emergency services necessarily
specialize and we have to improvise sometimes, even when we may lack
expertise in a particular function. That's the nature of emergencies.
The alternative is that we all stand on the sidelines and say, "It's
not my job."
A. When a cop does a firefighters job he gets a medal !
When the firefghter does his job .....Well you get the idea
Q. What happens when a firefighter does a cop's job?
A. There is no empirical data available to answer this question.