Seize the learning moments for fire education

It is encouraging to see an entire community learning about fire-safety and taking action

Editor’s Note:

Editor's note: A brutal wildfire season was very difficult for many Texas communities and fire departments. But the aftereffect has been more 'fire wise' residents. Chief Adam K. Thiel, looks at how these lessons learned can make communities and fire departments stronger.

As much of a tragedy as last year's Texas wildfires became, it's nice to see an entire community (fire service and beyond) learning lessons and, more importantly, taking action based on the experience.

We know that many of the incidents to which fire departments respond are impactful to those involved. Less frequent are those (like these wildfires) that serve as "focusing events" for a whole community.

It's vitally important that we take advantage of these opportunities to have candid conversations with those we serve about our capabilities and limitations. Just as critical is making sure our own members take the lessons and convert them into positive action.

Stay safe!

About the author

With more than two decades in the field, Chief Adam K. Thiel — FireRescue1's editorial advisor — is an active fire chief in the National Capital Region and a former state fire director for the Commonwealth of Virginia. Chief Thiel's operational experience includes serving with distinction in four states as a chief officer, incident commander, company officer, hazardous materials team leader, paramedic, technical rescuer, structural/wildland firefighter and rescue diver. He also directly participated in response and recovery efforts for several major disasters including the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Tropical Storm Gaston and Hurricane Isabel.

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