I hope everyone had a safe holiday over Christmas! Our department is 1 call away from a new annual record set back in 2001. Honestly, I hope we don't achieve it.
Everytime those tones go off, it's another chance that someone may not come back. You just never know what may be lurking around the next corner, hidden behind the scene or with the situation itself.
We (our department) has been very fortunate in regards to everyone going home. Our S.O.P.'s are in place to prevent as much danger as possible however, many uncontrolable and unknown variables play a part.
I remember rolling on a PIA (personal injury accident)...some on here list them as motor vehicle accidtent ie/ MVA..treating and packaging a patient for transport and finding out later after the fact there was a blood borne pathogen hazard. Those of us with patient contact were tested, treated and found to have negative results. Had we all not utilized our universal precautions and worn our PPE as well, who knows what the result could have been.
Another situation was a structure where we were providing exterior mutual aid support. The fire was so intense and hot, it actually melted the overhead power wires that were approx 30-40 ft horizontaly away from the structure and I would guess 100' in the air. The lines decended upon a tree and were held up by branches which then shorted out the lines before they would have reached the ground before any FF's were injured. Even though we were aware of the lines, and were back away from the structure, with the rain, wind and standing water, had the line not shorted out, no one could predict what damage the electricity could have done.
We all risk our lives every day, sometimes due to circumstances completely out of our control. Every time the tones go off, I say a prayer. If I'm at home with my family and we are paged, I tell them goodbye and I love them EVERY TIME without exception. My wife knows the danger of the job but also knows our Chief and officers have created our S.O.P.'s to do everything possible to protect our FF's.
Our annual record is something I hope never gets broken.