Burnout sneaks up on a lot of us in the wildfire profession, whether we are digging line, holding hoses or fostering resilience actions with our conversations and our keyboards.
You can buy belt buckles, T-shirts, and caps that proclaim you are “America’s Bravest” or that you are a “Dragon Slayer.” Are you?
While I am not an advocate for eliminating the use of fire shelters, when we understand and train for their proper application and importance, we will be able to move beyond our reliance on shelters when their presence is either unnecessary or dangerous.
Transparency, vulnerability, honesty, bluntness . . . Thom gives it to us straight about what resilience actually looks like.
The fire lines you put in, the burn outs you conduct, the retardant you call for, the fires you let burn, they are now a part of the land.
A first responder can only relax when they are retired or dead, and sustaining that pitch of mindfulness is a hard road.
Reality set in quickly as I tore the plastic on my fire shelter. There was no longer any hesitation, no stigmas to worry about, this was survival. I remember saying “I will see you on the other side” to my partners as I fumbled with unfolding my shelter.
Agency Administrators and Fire Staffs have the ability to encourage modules and individuals to manage fatigue. To set it as an expectation and then to support it.
I’m sharing this story in case you get the same call I did: “your coronavirus test came back positive.” COVID guilt is a real thing. But you should think twice before blaming yourself.
After multiple incident assignments so far during this special COVID-19 year, Brendan O’Reilly, Superintendent of the Prineville Interagency Hotshot Crew, has compiled several helpful lessons and observations from his perspective and that of his peers. COVID-19 Era Lessons and Observations from an IHC Superintendent By Brendan O'Reilly, Superintendent, Prinveville Interagency Hotshot Crew Online Check-In Excellent. … Continue reading COVID-19 Era Lessons and Observations from an IHC Superintendent