Wildland Fires and Traffic Management

Credit Hours:  1
Approximate reading time: 0.5 Hours
Approximate online time: 0.5 Hours

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Program Abstract

Despite recent severe wildland fire seasons, little attention has been paid to responder safety and traffic incident management during these events. Several struck-by line-of-duty deaths have occurred at wildland fire scenes. These events have involved smoke obscuration of visibility on the roadway, insufficient vehicle backing safety practices, and improper boarding of firefighting apparatus. Wildland fire also presents a burn hazard to crews working and staging on and near roadways. As buildings and infrastructure encroach further on undeveloped land, wildland fire and smoke will affect more moving traffic on roadways. In addition, wildland firefighting vehicles both on and off road pose a struck-by hazard to wildland firefighters. This program teaches traffic incident management considerations for roadways affected by wildland fires, firefighting operations, and safety procedures to follow when wildland firefighting vehicles are operating in close proximity to responders on foot. The program also describes recommended safety measures like meeting NFPA fire apparatus standards to avoid crashes and donning proper high visibility apparel before stepping out of the vehicle and wearing it throughout the response in compliance with applicable standards.

Important note: This program focuses solely on traffic control and the safety of responders operating near vehicles at a wildland fire. Other safety aspects of wildland fire response are outside the scope of this program.

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ResponderSafety.com and The Responder Safety Learning Network (RSLN) are a project of the Emergency Responder Safety Institute (ERSI), a Committee of the Cumberland Valley Volunteer Fireman's Association. The RSLN is an online training network delivering critical safety training for roadway incident responders. All training is free and delivered 24/7/365 on demand. The self-paced modules include critical components of roadway operations safety in an emergency situation, including: Advance Warning, Blocking, High Visibility, Traffic Control, Public Outreach, Incident Command, and more. Register online to get started.