Identifying the Knowledge and Skills Needed for Successful Critical Thinking and Decision Making on the Fire Ground   [open pdf - 398KB]

"Fire ground decision making is very stressful as decisions are required to be made under severe time constraints, often with little information. The problem is the Cedar Rapids Fire Department does not currently have a comprehensive program to train our incident commanders on critical thinking and fire ground decision making, which may result in unsafe decisions that can compromise safety on the fire ground. The purpose of this research was to identify the knowledge and skills necessary for critical thinking and decision making on the fire ground as well as training programs that currently exist to develop said knowledge and skills. Descriptive research was used to answer the following questions: a) What knowledge and skills are required to establish successful critical thinking and decision making results? b) What research and data currently exists on critical thinking and decision making skills? c) What research and information currently exists in non-fire service fields requiring critical thinking that could benefit the fire service? d) What research and information currently exists in fire service literature to address critical thinking on the fire ground? and e) What programs do other fire departments have to develop critical thinking and decision making skills for their incident commanders? Procedures utilized were a literature review and survey distributed to individuals in various emergency response organizations."

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United States Fire Administration: http://www.usfa.fema.gov/
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