This is Asheville IHC Reaction #5 – part of the Asheville Hotshots written reactions to “The Big Lie”
I don’t necessarily believe it’s a Big Lie. Or at least the experience that I’ve had in this job is it is—and can be—very dangerous. I do agree in the fact that not everyone is on the same page.
The thing that comes to my mind is the risk vs gain factor. The constant talk about unnecessary risk and less exposure. I hear this all the time. Yet, again and again, that’s exactly what we are ordered to do:
“I understand that we need to do things for the public to assure them we have everything ‘under control.’ But putting ourselves at risk is not the way to do it.”
Chasing “political” smokes over 300-feet interior in a charred black area to put out a stump hole surrounded by fire-weakened trees. Or, patrolling roads that are very unsafe to show a presence for the public even when the fire has been controlled for some time.
I understand that we need to do things for the public to assure them we have everything “under control.” But putting ourselves at risk is not the way to do it. We can’t make everyone happy yet we have this “the customer is always right” mentality.
I’ve seen leadership slowly starting to change and a new wave of thinking is becoming the new majority. Less exposure for things that won’t gain us much or anything at all.
One thought on “Not Everyone is on the Same Page”
After bring a wildland fire fighter for 40+ years I’ve had the opportunity to see it all. I was a national type 1 IC in the 80’s and it was difficult then to take the politics out of the equation and I can only imagine what it’s like now…I always had the attitude that the risks never outwayed the safety of the crews on the ground..The job is dangerous enough without trying to force a square peg in a round hole just to quiet the political pressures…Yes we should do the best we can to protect property and infastrucure and the lives of our firefighters and civilians and it’s up to management to be willing to take the heat and stand the ground for a professional operation based on their years of experience..Not the driven by emotion or political pressure…