CASE STUDY: The Origin of L.C.E.S. for Firefighters


The Origin of L.C.E.S. for Firefighters

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Arizona, 1990:  Six (6) firefighters died after being overrun in a wilderness fire attack.


In the After Action Review (AAR), the reviewers determined that opportunities were missed by the fire ground commanders to prevent many of the contributing factors that led to the responder loss of life.

From that tragedy TWO (2) overarching safety guidelines were instituted in order to reduce future responder injury and death.

The 2 Safety Guidelines are:

  1. Safety evaluations and briefings must be conducted before any tactical operation where responder safety is at risk.
  2. This evaluation criteria must be re-evaluated and re-briefed whenever incident conditions change, including when people enter or leave the field Team.

From those 2 guidelines arose FOUR (4) specific safety measures to be implemented called L.C.E.S.


Responder Safety LCES

The PURPOSE of L.C.E.S. is to improve the responders safety margin while operating in a hazardous environment.

Any time during an incident, each and every Team member is empowered and expected to initiate an L.C.E.S. briefing if they identify a change in incident conditions.


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