Lieutenant Andre Kelley – Lancaster City, PA.

In almost every class that Traditions Training presents, we play the audio from Lancaster City, PA. of the MAYDAY by Lt. Andre Kelley of Engine 3. We use this as a training tool and to make firefighters aware of this near tragedy as it played out that fateful night. We expect all of our students to learn from the incident, study the incident and to better themselves and their department from this incident. And we prayed that Lt. Andre Kelley would make it back to work, today the Lancaster Professional Firefighters, IAFF Local 319 posted the story of Lt. Kelley’s…

Making the tragedy personal is the first step in preventing the next Line of Duty Death.

 “The death of one man is a tragedy. The death of millions is a statistic.” Joseph Stalin After recently reading Dan Ariely’s book, Predictably Irrational, and his use of this quote, I pondered if this quote from the feared Communist leader Joseph Stalin could help reduce our line of duty deaths and the answer is YES! While Stalin’s quote was most likely intended for more sinister purposes it does have merit when discussing LODD’s. First, we are provided statistics in our trade on a daily basis but usually with no associated instructions on what do with the data. Specific to…

Some Quick Positioning Tips

A fire on January 19, 2015 for the Harrisburg, PA. Bureau of Fire demonstrated some excellent teaching points for Drivers or Chauffeurs of Tower Ladders. The fire in the 300 Blk. of N. Front Street involved the top floor of a four story mixed occupancy structure. The first due truck was Tower 1 from the Harrisburg Bureau of Fire, the Driver positioned the rig with a perfect spot. The rig is positioned on the corner of the structure with the turntable right at the Alpha/Bravo Corner. This allows for the boom and basket to reach the entire Bravo side and…

Mayday Monday- The Radio Call

In reviewing all the procedures and policies related to Mayday incidents, we have to remember the actual call itself from the trapped or lost firefighter. Does your department have a standard information set that needs to be transmitted out to the Incident Commander or the dispatch center. This is a crucial script that needs to be practiced by your crew members during weekly or monthly drills. This skill set must be able to be transmitted quickly and contain all the information desired by your department or company. In most cases of a Mayday call, the firefighter or officer is under…

Building Leaders for the Fire Service – Part 2………..By Dan Shaw

Last post we discussed the process of orientation for leadership development, which was essentially relying upon operational manuals or standard operating procedures as the foundation for leadership. While these documents may be necessary for building the knowledge for rank and position (remember leadership is not a given with rank!), it is not a process for developing leaders of people.  This process does more to build effective managers and not leaders who must motivate and cultivate people. Orientation leaves a void in the leadership paradigm but does provide the opportunity to introduce the process of socialization for our budding leaders. Socialization…


As we start the week off, lets take today to review your departments MAYDAY policies. These tasks, procedures and policies need to be practiced and reinforced through training constantly. We sometimes put this off to one time a year or when the next monthly drill is about RIT/RIC to brush up on these crucial tasks. Take some time today to go over these things: What is your department’s procedure for calling a MAYDAY? What is the information that the MAYDAY firefighter or crew needs to relay to the IC or crews outside? Can you activate your emergency button on your…

Incident Command Checklists

Recently after reading a book called the Checklist Manifesto and Highest Duty. Our department development checklists for scenarios and incident types for the IC or the IC Aide to review and check while engaged in that incident. We have listed the current ones we have in our RESOURCES tab at the top of our webpage. We currently are constructing additional check sheets for Active Shooter, Tech Rescue, Confined Space Rescue and Marine Operations. Please feel to take these sheets and modify them to fit your department needs, building stock and staffing levels.

Building Leaders for the Fire Service – Part 1………..By Dan Shaw

Leadership is a quality we seek and desire in every level of our trade. Most of us are fortunate to be exposed daily to leadership models through our mentors, books we read of leaders from all walks of life (military, religion, politics, etc.), and the challenges we face in our own lives. Inherently, the more inspired, driven, and dedicated individuals are, they typically seek and find more opportunities to reap the rewards of leadership lessons than their more passive counterparts. This does not mean that individuals who are more passive or who may not have access to mentorship should be…

Let’s Talk Water Supply… By TT Instructor Tim Bautz

TT water supply article Let’s Talk Water Supply…..A crucial Engine Co. task Depending on where you volunteer or work, establishing a water supply can be quite simple and quick…… or it can be complicated, time consuming and require multiple apparatus. My “Small Town” fire department has both. We have areas in our municipality that have hydrants every 500’ and we have areas that don’t have any type of water source for over a mile. Either way, we have to get water to the scene and we have get it there quickly or things will not go well. So as not…

RIT Operations – Making the Stairs by: TT Instructor Donald Wedding

Take a look at this Fire Engineering drill by our own Donald Wedding…

F.O.O.L.S. Training in Erskine Lakes, NJ.

Come join Traditions Training Instructor Tim Bautz as he assists the FOOLS organization in delivering “Setting up your Company for Success”. Tim will share his experience on making his department a top shelf company. All through the hard work of all his officers and firefighters.

Our History in Photo’s by Donald Wedding

Before we get into the meat and potatoes of this post, I wanted to get you thinking…What got YOU into this career of being a “Firefighter”? Was it a catchy add or employment opportunity you read one day, explaining how rewarding this career would be? Maybe a cool story you heard from your dad, or brother about a fire they went to? Now, either one of those may have led you ‘here’, but I think for most of us seeing dramatic news stories or photographs, along with watching a fire engine screaming down the street, lights flashing, ear piercing sirens…

Consistency, Visual Cues & Options… By Keith Niemann, Captain E-10 Wichita Fire

Consistency, Visual Cues & Options I’m a hose load junky, I said it.  Every time I travel to another department, or see pictures on the internet I always look at how the hose is loaded.  You can tell a lot from hose loads, if it’s neat and meticulous I tend to find the crews operate in a similar manor.  There is one thing more important than how the load looks, it’s how it pulls.  If given a chance I will often ask “how does this hose load work” and I’m surprised to find many crews have no idea.  Either it’s…

Double LODD Report from Bryan, Texas

As with every class we teach, we urge all our students to read and study Line of Duty Death Reports. Please click on the link below to go to the report from the Texas State Fire Marshal’s Office.

See All Posts

Bring Traditions to Your Department

Join Our Mailing List

Training Programs

TT instructors deliver some of the most intense and informative training with an unparalleled passion for the fire service. Our classes are based on on-the-job experience and consist only of "no BS" fireground proven tips & skills.

Classes are fully customized and are available on all operational fire service issues, including:

  • Engine/Truck Company
  • Rapid Intervention / FF Survival
  • Officer Development
  • Strategy & Tactics

Please click here to learn more about our classes, or contact us.