We are having a discussion at the station on what constitutes a standby for call reporting. Some believe you must come to the station for a call and stay until units are placed in service. Others believe you should receive a standby credit for showing up and not getting on a piece and not staying for the duration of the call. I would like to get input from others on what your company policy, procedure or rule is and see if anyone has an sop/sog in place that we could use in creating our own.

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we don't do stand by on station per say, but if a large storm is coming some of us will go to station until it passes. If we recieve no calls then there is no run number made up so noone gets credit ,but a large number of people in our community have the station number and the chiefs cell number.That way if the have a non-emergency problem they call those numbers direct and we help in any way we can.

Where I came from (a full time, paid, department) a standby (personnel) meant a firefighter from another station/shift turned up to replace a missing shift member so that the appliances remained fully staffed (not enough riders and it's automatically "off the run"), and a standby (equipment) meant an appliance from another station booked attendance at the station when the recipient station's appliances were fully engaged elsewhere (so as to maintain cover).

Because it's full time everyone just got paid as normal, overtime if you were covering from another shift, no Brownie Points.

When we had reserve firefighter's who were responded to the station to provide coverage, or as you phrased it, standing by, the understanding and philosophy was that there was a minimum time that would be paid. I think it was 2-hours of paid time, even if you responded to the station and stayed less than an hour. It was also understood that the paid/call reserve firefighters did not leave the station until the first-due engine was placed back into service, e.g. 100%. the last person to leave when called in was the Lieutenant that entered the data into the station logbook.

We do get credit for standing by, but have to remain atthe station until the untis clear scene. We are incuraged to roll an appartatus, but there are times when it doesn't happen, like minor medicals that already have enough personell, or a probationary firefighter whoe is not cleared to drive. They still get credit for showing up. Now we are not a paid per call department, we are a combination career and volunteer department with a pension program. So the idea of credit for just sitting at the station amy be different of you are getting paid per call.


I understand both of your points Mike and Andy i was looking at things from a purely volunteer  perspective not even thinking of the paid side  for us "standby" is when we are called to cover another  departments station.

What they are referring to is a call standby, not making a unit for a particular call but recieving credit for coming out for it and staying at station so if they are needed for that call or an additional call.


We are also a combination dept. The problem we are having is the way individuals determine what standby means and not giving credit to personnel that come out for the call but are unable to make it on any apparatus. Some believe you should only get standby credit if you remain at the station for the duration of the call. Others believe just by coming to the station in an attempt to make the call that you should recieve credit. We just want to get some input and come up with a clear definition to make guidelines so there is no question on who should be recieving credit because there is a legal issue involved if someone gets hurt yet was not included in any report.

The problem we are having is the way individuals determine what standby means and not giving credit to personnel that come out for the call but are unable to make it on any apparatus. Some believe you should only get standby credit if you remain at the station for the duration of the call. Others believe just by coming to the station in an attempt to make the call that you should recieve credit.


I figured this was a bit more about volunteers. On a FT dept we can get called to standby at another station or to more centrally locate due to an incident. If off duty and they need personnel to staff reserve rigs because of an incident, then we have it set up as a minimum 4 hour OT. If the incident is handled sooner, then OT crews will stick around up to the 4 hours.


I can understand the issue on the volunteer side of things, too, but I do think you can also look to establish your own rules for a standby. When I did volunteer and someone didn't make the rig, they could sign in and get credit, but didn't have to stick aound. The issue also depends on the dept setup and so forth, not to mention the nature of the call. If the issue was a fire, then those who didn't make a rig out, would standby until the rig was back in service.


So why not look into a compromise in establishing a rule, like a sign in/sign out and make a minimum call in time? For instance if you get a call and you get people showing up late to make a rig, then make it that they have to stay a minimum of an hour to get credit. If they can't stay an hour, then should they really receive credit for the call then? An average call takes about an hour, with paperwork, etc, etc, so if the call was over in the hour time frame, leave when the rig gets back, otherwise waiting an hour is not that big of deal to receive credit.


If the call is a bit more involved, then the chief or an officer should be able to have those standing by to remain at the station if need be, otherwise, look to set a minimum time frame in order to receive credit for the call. This way it helps to curb those "screening" a call and happen to arrive "late" and just sign their name to get credit.

At my all volunteer station if a member responds from home (or is all ready at the station) and there is no seat for them on a vehicle, then they are listed on the call report under Standby at Station. This gives them the same credit point(s) as those who actually went to the scene. Our sog's say they must remain until everyone returns, however they may be allowed to leave early at the senior officers discretion. This works well for us because it balances members and the departments needs.

We staff 24hrs, but if a member sleeps through a call, then they do not get any credit (and must wash the rigs by themselves afterwards).

Quick reply, dont have time.

A stand By is when one department is out to a large call and needs to have someone cover calls in their district AND be ready in case they need more help at scene.  They call the mutual aid dept to stand by.  I make the members of our department STAY at the station to get the credit.  I couldnt stand it when guys came in, signed the book, THAN asked what the call was for ans when they heard they left and expected to still get credit...wrong.

For someone to get stand by credit they need to physically be in the station and ready to respond to a call should another call be toned out for the mutual aid dept, or be ready to respond to the initial call for extra help.  If you cant stay then technically you are not available for the call and you do not get credit.  Thats just my 2 cents though!



Well, there shouldn't be any confusion within your department about it as there should be a policy in place so that there isn't any question. 


In my combo department we often get called out for alarms and usually the vols get to the station and remain there until the paid guys either say it is clear or we get enough of a crew to roll.  We'll sometimes get called out to be on standby while the paid guys are all tied up at some other scene (usually a car accident) so that we cover the city while they're busy.  If severe weather is on the way we'll often get called out to be on standby.  On those night we only get "credit" for the initial callout no matter how many actual calls we go on after the initial page.  Sometimes we get called out to fill in for one of the paid guys if he had to ride the ambulance in with a patient leaving one of the engines undermanned. 


But, in all cases, we all stay at the station until the situations that prompted the call-out is resolved.  I suppose if we were there for a few hours and one of the guys had something he had to do, he would probably go home, but I haven't seen that happen. 

Standby for us would be to stay at the station to man any apparatus that didn't respond on the call or help the crew from another dept when they are sent to fill in from another county or state with info about the area. 

 Now if you are on standby you can't leave until your station's unit(s) are back in the station, ready for service like filling SCBA, replacing hose or cleaning apparatus or equipment  and your name is on the station run sheet as a standby for credit by the officer in charge.  

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