Define and advocate the need for a cultural change within the fire service relating to safety; incorporating leadership, management, supervision, accountability and personal responsibility.
Culture is generally defined as the behaviors, attitudes, values, and beliefs that are shared within a group or organization. It reflects the collective perception of right and wrong, good and bad, or desirable and undesirable actions and characteristics.
The safety culture within a fire department is reflected through its members’ behaviors, attitudes and actions in and out of the station as well as on the fire ground. The 1st Initiative asks us to explore the characteristics of our departments to bring about a higher commitment to safety.
Nationwide, the firefighter’s personal protective ensemble, apparatus and equipment technology, available training and safety resources, and safety standards are at the highest, safest levels ever experienced in fire service history. However, United States Fire Administration statistics reveal a ten-year plateau of more than 100 firefighter line-of-duty deaths and approximately 10,000 serious line-of-duty injuries each year. To worsen matters, firefighters are being injured and killed on incidents at rates close to those of 20 years ago. Case analyses show that most of these line-of-duty deaths and injuries are preventable. Within the context of Everyone Goes Home® and the 16 Firefighter Life Safety Initiatives, no advocacy point carries more importance and potential than the need to change the culture of safety from within. Clearly, the fire service must change its attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors toward safety if reductions in firefighter injuries and fatalities are going to be reduced.
Initiative 1 Resources
- 16 Initiatives for the Wildland Firefighter
- Everyone Goes Home® in the Wildland
- High School Fire and EMS Programs and Academies: Opportunities and Challenges
- Wildland Fire Safety Strategy Meeting
- National Safety Culture Change Initiative (NSCCI)
Initiative 1 Research
- Four Commonsense Steps to Preventing a Firefighter Mayday
- Why Have a Junior Firefighter Program
- 3 Decision-Making Tools To Keep Your Crew Alive
- A Healthy Discussion About Diversity in the Fire Service
- Bringing Our Veterans Into the Fire Service
Latest Initiative 1 News
- Fire Stop Tour, January 10-12, 2023 – The U.S Fire Administrator and principal leaders from the American fire service, in partnership with the Fire Department of New York (FDNY), the Philadelphia Fire Department, and the Washington, D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department, will stand together on Jan. 10‑12 to speak with one voice to address the fire problem facing our nation.
» Watch the Summit Replay
- The Life and Death of FDNY Firefighter Carmelo Puccia: A New Podcast from NFFF – FDNY Firefighter Carmelo “Carmine” Puccia was killed tragically on January 6, 1970, when he was struck by a subway train while investigating a trash fire on the tracks. The podcast is a two-part installment and tells Firefighter Puccia’s story through the recollections of the two groups most affected by his loss: his family and his department. Viewers and listeners will gain insight into Firefighter Puccia as a husband, father, and firefighter—and witness FDNY’s solid determination that we will never forget.
- Boyd Street: NFFF’s Compelling New Documentary – The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation announces the release of Boyd Street, created in partnership with the Los Angeles City Fire Department and Full Vision Productions.
- New Health & Safety at Wildland Fires Course Now Available on Fire Hero Learning Network – This timely new training discusses the unique characteristics of wildland fire responses, the known hazard categories and safety practices that mitigate these hazards, and how to practice effective risk management. As the demand for service and exposures increase, so do the health and safety hazards to all firefighters who operate in the wildland urban interface.
- NFFF Announces 4th Firefighter Life Safety Summit – This important gathering builds on the advances from previous Life Safety Summits in Tampa (FL) and Truman Fire Forums (2019 and 2022) to move firefighter health and safety strategies forward. A keynote speaker for the event is Chief Fire Officer (CFO) Sabrina Cohen-Hatton, West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service, whose in-depth work on command decision-making revolutionized the British Fire Service’s approach to incident command.
- National Fire Service Research Agenda Report Released – Researchers and fire service practitioners met virtually last year for the 4th National Fire Service Research Agenda Symposium resulting in the National Fire Service Research Agenda Report with nearly 300 recommendations.
- National Firefighter Life Safety Summit 2022 Postponed – The National Firefighter Life Safety Summit 2022 Planning Committee has postponed the Summit due to the current impact of the coronavirus pandemic on fire departments across the country. A new date for the Summit will be announced in the upcoming weeks.
- Fire Hero Learning Network Reaches New Milestone – The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation is excited to announce that the Foundation’s online learning platform, the Fire Hero Learning Network (FHLN), has reached a milestone of over 130,000 registered users.
- After the Fire Podcast – Episode 9 – In the third episode of this three-part series on the FDNY Father’s Day Fire, we are joined by the wives of Lieutenant John Downing, Firefighter Brian Fahey, and Firefighter Harry Ford.
- After the Fire Podcast – Episode 8 – In the second episode of this three-part series on the FDNY Father’s Day Fire, we discuss a Queens taxpayer fire that erupted into a 5-alarm fire claiming the lives of three firefighters Lieutenant John Downing, Firefighter Brian Fahey, and Firefighter Harry Ford.