I have a question for those in departments out there regarding incident reporting. This isn't directed just at officers.
My department serves a rural community and is all-volunteer. We utilize a computer based incident reporting system that is accessible via the internet.
Those in similar departments, how do you get your personnel to get reports done? Do you have time limits, penalties, etc.?
Stipend / per diem rate per call is a paid call firefighter. I have seen true volunteer departments that get nothing do the reports in a timely manner. It comes down to delgating authority and time management. The IC should be doing his/her incident report and the crew should be putting the truck(s) back in service. It happens all the time in volunteer, call or career department's. A simple fire alarm report should be no longer than 10 minutes if you don't have a computer issue. Yes fire reports are longer but so is cleaning tools, racking hose and packing the rigs back in service.
The department I am a part of is an all volunteer department that covers a rurual area. I am not an officer but I am the member responsible for entering all of the call data for NFIRS. We do not have a high call volume.I make it a point to get to the station at least once a week and enter all of the data for each call. There is normally only two or three calls a week. I am motivated to assist my department in any way I can. I want to be an active member and this is how I help.
Reports should be completed as soon as everything is cleaned up. We have reports that gets filled out part on scene and the rest when back at the station. Then these reports (papers) get turned into the Fire Prevention Officer (me) and I enter them into the fire program, at the end of the month I send them to the State Fire Marshalls office. All reports are to be completed at the end of the call and put in the box.
Both at work and at the volunteer house, the report gets done before you leave the firehouse. No exceptions.