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Sample Case Study Paper on Ecology

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Sample Case Study Paper on Ecology

The Monroe fire rescue department was founded in the year 1872; the department was merged with the police department in 1980. Among the services the department provides are;  responding to light, and in collaboration with the Union County Volunteer Fire Department, the Monroe fire rescue department responds to the emergency in medical and hazardous materials. This committee is led by the Ronald Fowler, and this unit is divided into four divisions: Administration, Operations, Training and the Safety as well as the Fire Marshal’s Division. For the last fifth teen years, the department has recorded the following incidence of fire, which resulted in the death of some officers and several others injured. (Fowler, 2013).

The incident

Number of injured firefighter

year

Building fire

131

2001

Vehicle fire

3

2003

Other fires

11

2004

Ems/rescue

103

2005

Conditional hazards

7

2008

Service calls

1

2010

False alarms

3

2011

 

The total number of injured officers were 246, and four of them died.

The activities that the soldiers were engaging themselves recorded in the department are as follows below;

The activity involved

The number of casualties

year

Racing the vehicle

23

2001

Operating a FD apparatus

3

2003

Neutralizing fire

96

2004

Support  on the fire suppression

54

2005

Access to egress

7

2008

Rescue

36

2010

Scene activity

14

2011

Undetermined action

91

2012

 

 

 

Over the years, the department has lost dedicated firefighters in the line of duty.  On 31st may 2013, four firefighters died and several others injured during the operation. Those who died were the captain 35-years, career engineer operator 41 years, firefighter 29 years old, and a 24-year-old career firefighter. They died when the roof of the restaurant collapsed on them when they were in afirefighting operation.  When the department receives the fire alarm, it assigns the officers different fields.  The captain had been assigned an engine, and the operator was assigned a ladder, but he was later assigned jump seat to the left (E51B). The other two firefighters were assigned to an Engine 68. On arriving, the captain transmitted his size-up, indicating there was a big fire at the restaurant with a thick smoke and a high-temperature reading from his thermal imager. The operators began to fight the fire from the side offensively using a 2-inch pre-connected hose line in the cafeteria.  When the key 68D arrived, he ordered the captain out of the building, since the engineer had stated that E51 operator was running short of water as the tank was under a quarter. The firefighters had just arrived and laid down the two supply line each 4 inch connected to that of the captain to faucet east of the building. On establishing the water supply, the captain (E 51) re- entered the building with his crew. He was given back -up by engine company (E68).  The Engine E68 was pulling 11/4 inch fire hose on the doorway.  Twelve minutes after the captain had re-entered, the building collapsed. The captain from the Engine 68 made a call to Mayday for intervention. The Rapid intervention group arrived to rescue their own people, and during the intervention, the second collapse occurred injuring several officers from the rescue team. The incredible efforts made by the other members of the bureau resulted in saving some RIT operation. The rescue group located the captain of E68 took him away from the structure and rushed to the hospital. The engineer who later died at the hospital was trying to withdraw from the building when it collapsed covering him underneath.  The rescue team persisted in search of the other two firefighters and the captain of from E51. After searching for about 2 hours, the body of the E51 captain was discovered in the debris at the top of the roof of the restaurant. The two firefighters’ bodies were found beneath the rubble of the collapsed building. The three of them had died on the spot before being taken to the hospital. It was a big tragedy to the department of the fire rescue to have happened in a duration of over twenty years.

The first factor that contributed to the death of the four officers is the delay in fire reporting. The officers were informed about the occurrence three hours after the fire had started. The cafeteria personnel took a long time before raising the alarm to the rescue department.  By the time the officers were arriving, the fire had already taken over a bigger portion of the structure, giving the firefighters rough time dealing with the ferocious fire. The second factor is that the department delayed in initiating the fighting process. They took much time to notify the concerned personnel, and on receiving the information, the division converged its officers for some time to assign them the roles and to give them the instructions followed in responding to the fire. The captain, engineer, and firefighters were assigned different positions. The fire continued to spread further when the division was organizing them. The third factor is the lack of enough facilities and the equipment; the firefighters had only one tank of water that was insufficient in fighting the fire in the whole structure. After a few minutes of combating, only a quarter tank of water was left, forcing the captain to leave the building for some time to call for assistance from the Engine Company E68.  The fourth cause of death was poor building construction. The structure collapsed as a result of its faulty design. If the building had been constructed appropriately with a strong perimeter wall and the roof, it might not have collapsed during the firefighting process. Lack of the emergency medical response team is the other factor. The firefighters went to the scene in a group of four, without being accompanied by the medical team to help the victims of the fire and those who suffered injuries from the collapsed structure. The victims should have received first Aid before being taken to the hospital. There was a lot of wind, which destructed the fighters, as they were trying to combat the fire from the door. The wind accelerated the rate at which the fire destroyed the structure. The wind came at a constant speed of 17 miles per hour, affecting the tactics employed by Engine 51. (NFPA, 2014)

Personnel accountability contributed to the loss of life of the officers. The chief officers of the department have not developed enough strategies that could match the magnitude of the fire. He sent only four officers to the scene, but the condition required more than that. After realizing the strength of the fire, the firefighters were not supposed to control it with the offensive tactics. They were expected to identify the possible outcomes of the building and use the defensive mechanism to suppress the fire. Poor communication and coordination between the commanding officers and those in operation contributed to the misunderstanding between the chief and the commander.  Due to heavy smoke, the commander asked E51 to use the entrance, which was the Alpha side.  The management contacted the Alpha Division and advised him to remain on the Alpha side of the building.  After a few minutes, E82A reported back to the commander that the roof had collapsed, and E51 and E82A were inside.  The commander requested the Engines dispatched from the division. The time interval between the fall of the building and the dispatch was 15 minutes.

Lack of fire sprinkler system also contributed to the accident; they had only one fire hose shared amongst the two firefighters.  Moreover, the scene size-up brought a challenge, the initial size up according to the commander was 2-inch hand line. Based on this magnitude, the captain developed his strategies assuming that there were occupants in the building. The District 68 used the command and followed similar tactics and strategies. The department did not pre-plan the structure based on the assessment of risk. It should integrate the current fire behavior with the research developed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology into operative procedures by conducting live training on fire, and revising the foregrounds tactics.

The systems development should be flexible to allow the changes. Life safety should be the number one priority of the rescue team followed by the property. The incident commander should ensure the strategies match the condition encountered. The department needs to review and update the standard procedures for the operations on fires driven by the wind.

The Monroe County Fire Rescue has several policies and procedures to deal with the situation like that, should it happen in the future. Among the policies and procedures to be applied are; Public Education and fire prevention activities. Aviation firefighters and rescue program, Emergency Medical care, hazardous material program, Technical Rescue, fire suppression program, New Fire Station constructed, planning and emergency management division and the new strategic plan developed.  The Monroe department has launched a strategic plan for the year 2014-2018.  The program was prepared in conjunction with the Center for Public Safety Excellence, and they come up with the community-driven plan. The strategic plan focuses on the key pillars of the department, such as the safety, compassion, teamwork, integrity, respect and the customer service as the main components of a unit.

 The competency of workers is improved by training. Training of the members done at the firefighting college where members are trained in areas, such as the emergency response, the Medical care, the use of the firefighter’s pipes. The staffs receive an advanced certificate in the firefighting and certified fire investigation.  The new fire station was constructed in the year 2014 as one of the strategies to ensure that the firefighting equipment is brought close to the major city centers to respond efficiently to a fire accident. The operating division charged with the responsibility of responding to the emergency; the division has more than 72 highly trained men and women who are divided into three shifts, each 24 members.  The members work in the different shift so that the unit does not close at any time; the office is open at nights, over the holidays and weekends. They are ready for any element of weather like flooding, snow, rain, and icy conditions. This division provides all the services, such as provide emergency medical care for the sick and those injured, mitigating various types of hazardous materials, rescuing persons who are trapped in the vehicles or buildings, saving those who are carried by water, and aids where people need limited attendance. The division conducts fire safety inspections, maintains the apparatus and equipment, and conducts pre- incident planning and training on a regular basis.

The fire suppression program concentrates on those events that require faster fire mitigation. The incidence includes structures, vehicles, and brush fires.  In Response to the occurrence, the division deploys various resources like firefighting and the apparatus. The department uses an efficient response force consisting of 14 firefighters to mitigate fires in buildings occupied by business, factories, and storage facilities, rated as the high individual risks. The firefighters are deployed in two engine companies: one of the battalion, and the other one to Quant Company. The department has a technical rescue team, which responds to the emergencies requiring particular knowledge and expertise. It functions on three levels; the awareness, operation, and technicians (Fowler, 2013). The firefighters receive the training onrescuing during recruitment at school; this group is capable of conducting operations at a rescue incident and minimizing the threats to the rescuers. The department has identified the exact level of capability of the exploitation of the rescue team, which requires critical thinking to solve the problem. In a rescue incident, the first response is to determine the address, the type of event, then upgraded or downgraded based on the initial size up.

The department has trained some hazardous material firefighters to respond to the hazardous materials. This team usually responds to all the 18 Union of The County Volunteer Fire Departments. They responded to calls with engine company crew, from fire station 1 to fire station 3 with Hazmat as its primary focus. The fire department converted the previous Hazmat 55 and introduced a new Hazmat to take the responsibility of delivering new rescue.  Faster response to the emergency medical attention is vital because some conditions like cardiac arrest or blood flow in the brain require the quick response. Monroe Fire Department follows first respondent principles developed by Union EMS Medical Control and the North Carolina Office of EMS. The procedures are guided by the initial management of the medical victims. Quint and the Engine companies respond to the incident with three firefighters while vehicles, such as QRV’s respond with at least two firefighters.  They call for additional resources from the CPR during higher priority medical response.  Furthermore, the department has begun using the CPR concept, which is administered by the NC office. The CPR assigns tasks to the responders at the scene of an incident; it has streamlined the approaches to the patients.  Since the introduction of the service, the rate of the survival has risen (Haney, 2013).

At the Fire Marshal’s Division, the department focuses on the fire prevention, public education, and fire investigations. The origin and cause of the incidents are investigated so that the department prepares itself should a similar event occur in the future.  When investigating fire incidents that involved the criminals done in partnership with the police officers, those requiring specialized equipment are conducted together with the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation. The department has a policy of providing education to the members of the public to reduce the impacts of the fire should it occur.  The areas public education deal with are the Fire Extinguisher training participants, public fire education participants, fire extinguisher, smoke detector installation, Carbon Monoxide Detector Installations, and Community Watch Meetings.

As a different measure to improve the response to the accident, the department has acquired an aircraft, aviation Firefighting, and Rescue Program. The aviation firefighters and rescue follows three major approaches to the condition of the plane: if an incident occurred off the airport or outside the city where the area is remote, there is a possibility of the response time increasing due to travel. The ARFF incidence varies depending on the frequency of the incident. High-risk situations require thirteen firefighters whereas, less risk needs only three.  The department obtained a new vehicle in 2013 that is capable of responding to the aircraft emergencies. This unit gives staffs the facilities, management through a typical structure of command, the police and different supporting agencies. Planning and emergency division deals with the handling of the alarm and fire accreditation service (Hardwick, 2013).

The department established the emergency communication center that has an approximation of 34 full -time employees whose duty is to receive calls from various places where the fire incident occurs and responds by informing the firefighters immediately to report to the place. The process of installing a state of the art equipment known as the positron Viper phone system that has an Automatic Call Distribution, higher ground recording system, and the Motorola P25 Radio System. The information would be received faster and be distributed to all the divisions of the shortest time possible. Therefore, the response time is reduced, thus, more properties and lives saved.  The primary point of call answering from the public is the Union County Department of Emergency Communications; it receives the report from the emergency situations and notifies the relevant agencies. Several bodies incorporated in this communication: the Union EMS, Monroe City First Responders, the union county emergency department, and the eighteen county Volunteer Fire and the public works. The system is an improvement of the 9-1-1 operation; it works in collaboration with the National Medical Dispatch. It allows the Telecommunications to give full information to the caller including what he/she should do until the ambulance arrives; it also provides priority when dispatching the EMS and the Early Responders.

The state firefighter safety and health program was adopted by the department. The safety program’s primary responsibility is to implement the Florida Statute Section 633.801, Firefighter Occupational Safety and Health Act. The act covers the investigation, preparation report for fire services, and the training on safety. The training ground must be safe and the condition that the fighter experience at work. The system launched a website, where information regarding the safety measures obtained. The system was updated on the innovation in the firefighting, tracking the death of officers in the line of duty each month. The procedures for reporting the problem is contained in the website so that it can be downloaded from the website. The information assists in the reduction of unnecessary injuries.

The above policies and procedures have significantly reduced the loss of firefighters. In the year 2013, there was no civilian or firefighter injuries or death reported as a result of the adoption of the new policies by the department. The department has been able to implement the new rescue truck in service, several hires, upgraded hazmat capabilities to hazmat 55, and completed the training of natural gas. The CPR team focus trained some staff in various fields and professionals, purchased and redesigned new uniforms, substituted the first helmets, created and implemented two battalion positions. When they implemented the Medic program in every station, the volume of calls dropped by a significant number (William, 2016). The officers are well trained; they receive assistance from the police department when they are carrying out their duties so that in a case of any danger ahead, the law enforcers reinforce them. The members of the public are also educated in the various precautions relating to the fires in homes, vehicles or in the business setting to install smoke detectors so that they may deal with the fire on their own before it spreads to other places. The call centers enhance the receiving of the incidents and dispatch firefighters to suppress the fire.  The new machinery and the vehicles together with the aircraft boost the work of the officers; they can reduce the losses and save their lives.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References

Fowler, R. D. (2013). Monroe Fire Department Annual Report. Monroe Fire Department Annual Report, 12-20.

Haney, A. M. (2013). Division of State Fire Marshal: Florida Department of Fire and Financial Services. Florida Fires 2013, 70-90.

Hardwick, K. (2013). Glendale Fire Department: Procedures and Policies. Glendale Fire Department. Policies and Procedures, 200-220.

Raj tar, S. (2007). A Guide to the Historic Fires in Florida. In S. Raj tar, History of Fire in Florida (pp. 160-200). London: History Press.

William, K. (2016). North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Services. Fire and Rescue Services, 50-60.

NFPA. (2014). Fire Fighter Fatality Investigations. National Fire Protection Association, 250-275.

 

 

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