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Fire Engineering Webcast January 12, 2015

Posted by Jim Silvernail in Combat Ready for Suburbia.
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If you missed the Jan. 8 webcast of “Fireground Decision Making for Suburban Company Officers” it is available on demand at Fireengineering.com.  This was a “down and dirty,” one hour overview of the 4 hour FDIC workshop presentation which will be presented at FDIC International 2015, April 21 @ 08:00.

Fire Engineering


Kicking off 2015! December 30, 2014

Posted by Jim Silvernail in Combat Ready for Suburbia.
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I would like to wish everyone a very Happy New Year!  Suburban Fire Tactics will be kicking off 2015 with the first Webcast of the year for Fire Engineering, the exclusive magazine of SFT.  Very proud to be apart of the PennWell family and this industry leading magazine.


2015! Year 5 at FDIC…Looking forward to another great year! December 17, 2014

Posted by Jim Silvernail in Combat Ready for Suburbia.
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Suburban Fire Tactics 2015! December 11, 2014

Posted by Jim Silvernail in Combat Ready for Suburbia.
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We are starting to fill the calendar for 2015 and excited about new and future bookings for the SFT seminars. If you are interested, please get ahold of me at jim@suburbanfiretactics.com Starting to fill up fast.

We will be kicking off the year by being featured on FE webinars on 1/8!

SFT on the road 2015:
New York
Indiana (FDIC)


Building Consistency on the Fireground December 5, 2014

Posted by Jim Silvernail in Combat Ready for Suburbia.
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Recently I delivered a discussion on “Building Consistency on the Fireground.”  Consistency seems to be a major issue for us in suburbia.  Often, our fires go extremely well.  Please don’t think to yourself, “well, every fire goes out!”  The answer, YES it does.  But what transpires in the interim between the origin and going out?  9 out of 10 times our crews pull a line and put the fire out very effectively, sometimes even with non-effective or safe tactics.  What happens on the 10th fire that offers a challenge?  Will those tactics work?  Have a system in place which guarantees Safe, Efficient, and Effective fireground operations at EVERY fire, CONSISTENTLY (experience, training, and effective SOGs).  This includes implementing the fireground safety net.  Stay safe brothers.

Building Fire Ground Consistency

Fire Ground Safety Net

ISFSI Fall Conference November 17, 2014

Posted by Jim Silvernail in Combat Ready for Suburbia.
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I wanted to send out a huge thank you to both the International Society of Fire Service Instructors and the Ohio Society of Fire Service Instructors for allowing me to attend and present at the annual Fall Conference.  I was given the opportunity to hang out with old friends and make new ones.  What a great group of individuals interested in the progress of the fire service!

I was given the opportunity to present: “Building Consistency on the Fire Ground” to 4 classrooms of very motivated fire service professionals!  Success!  I am planning to build this seminar into something larger in the future.  Please stay tuned

.Building consistency

This website will also soon undergo some updating.  I plan to add a new catalog section with all deliveries:

  • Flag ship presentation: “Suburban Fire Tactics: The Coordinated Fire Attack”
  • Building Consistency on the Fireground
  • Let’s get REAL: Firefighting in Suburban and Rural Environments    COMING SOON!
  • Decision making series:
    • “Fireground Decision Making for Suburban Company Officers”
    • “Fireground Decision Making for Quint Company Officers”
    • “Fireground Decision Making for Quint Operations”      Lecture and consulting available
    • NOTE:  Practical sessions are also available with the Decision Making presentations dependent on agency logistical capabilities

Please stay tuned in!   Jim

New Quint Class Offered June 29, 2014

Posted by Jim Silvernail in Combat Ready for Suburbia.
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I just had the opportunity to deliver a new offering this week, “Fire Ground Decision Making for Quint Operations.”  For the past four years I have been delivering a variation of presentations under the “Suburban Fire Tactics” theme at various regional and national events.  I have been preparing and awaiting for this delivery since the inception of the SFT.  As an officer in a Quint system for the past 11 years, I have been documenting and assessing different operational needs and deficiencies in relation to this concept in the suburban setting. 

This past week 6/23-25/14, this delivery, including practical evolutions,  was put to the test over a 3 day period in a suburban Chicago setting.  The Addison Fire Department ( in the northwest suburbs) had recently purchased three new 75′ Quints to replace their compliment of engines and a tower ladder.  This class was designed to create an interactive discussion and workshop to discover the new challenges and necessary adaptations which this system would bring to this agency.

Most agencies realize that there is more involved than simply making a trip to an apparatus manufacturer and purchasing a whole new type of apparatus.  Replacing a ladder and engine company with a Quint requires a new operational game plan.  There are many intangibles which must be understood.   The efficiency desired through the quint system will require adoption of operational guidelines, specific to agency capability and needs, in order to achieve effectiveness.  Often, sacrifices are experienced in the form of: reduced booster tank size, reduced hose lengths and loads, compartment capacity, and reduced aerial length.  Operational guidelines must be implemented which take these changes into account.  Examples can include: the need to forward lay and the need to explore new procedures for commercial and extended stretches.

The delivery focuses on the achievement of the ultimate goal, the coordinated fire attack.  It does not simply explain the operations of the specific fire apparatus.  The apparatus manufacturer could achieve this task.  The elements of a safe, effective and efficient fire ground are broken down to the individual fire ground functions and implemented according to function prioritization, agency capabilities and response area characteristics.  Consistency will be achieved through the development of effective Standard Operating Procedures.  All challenges are tested through a final practical evolution.



Suburban Fire Tactics is hitting the road in June….Who is next? May 21, 2014

Posted by Jim Silvernail in Combat Ready for Suburbia.
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Suburban Fire Tactics is hitting the road in June. Our first stop is the state of the “Land of 10,000″ Lakes, Minnesota on June 12-14 for their annual MSFDA Conference. Then we will be headed to the suburbs of Chicago, Addison F.D. on June 23-25, to discuss Quints and decision making. Great way to kick off Summer!

Who is next? If you are interested in any of the SFT deliveries, please give me a shout.

 Image        Image

FDIC 2014 Recap April 13, 2014

Posted by Jim Silvernail in Combat Ready for Suburbia.
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FDIC 2014 is officially in the books.  Another fantastic year of inspiration and learning.  Also another fantastic year for Suburban Fire Tactics.  The message is getting bigger and stronger every year.  I have to truly thank Fire Engineering, PennWell, Bobby Halton, Diane Rothschild, and the entire cast at Fire Engineering Books and Videos.  I am so fortunate to have SFT under this brand with so many talented people.  THANK YOU!

The Suburban Tactics classes saw over 150 participants this year.   The workshop session of “Company Officer Development: Fire Ground Decision Making for Suburban Company Officers” had phenomenal discussions, problem solving, and an unbelievable participation into FIRE FIGHTING.

The Classroom Session saw a packed room in a large classroom.  I was overwhelmed by the interest level in this subject matter.  My only complaint is that I truly can’t get the full participation level in this allotted time.  This subject matter is so unique to all participants, that I love to share their challenges and tactical decision making.

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU to all who gave up their time to come see my deliveries.  It means absolutely the world to me and is very humbling.

I was also able to share some very quality time over at the bookstore/author’s booth with some of my very favorite people and mentors.  This year I was slotted with the great Mike Ciampo.  I took his ladders class almost 12 years ago.  What an honor.

The opening ceremony was unbelievable.  Erich Roden and Bobby Halton absolutely lifted participants to all time highs and made you remember what loyalty and service is all about.

Of course, I also enjoyed doing the FE Blog and Talk show “Small Town Tactics and Tools” with Chris Willis.  We were able to chat and discuss how size up begins sooner than the bell.  It begins by looking in the mirror with an honest assessment.

Finally, I can’t end this entry without talking about the brotherhood.  I love the opportunities to meet and reunite with so many industry professionals and true brothers at FDIC.  I am so glad that I was able to go to the Fools Bash, the dinner with Tommie Grigg/Cindy Huse (FE Magazine and FE Books and Videos), lunch with Cindy Huse and her cast of characters, breakfast with my friends PJ Norwood and Jason Hoevelmann, and the FE Books and Videos Author’s Dinner.  I know I am missing something.  But it isn’t just the formal events, its the small chance encounters and quick conversations with brothers from all over the country.


I am starting to get requests to bring SFT on the road this year and am beginning to finalize the dates.  If you have interest in having your own/customized conversations about suburban challenges, tactics, quints, truck-less agencies, limited resources, limited staffing dilemmas, creating SOPs, company officer decision making, rural challenges, automatic/mutual aid, PLEASE contact me so we can set it up (not limited to the list).



FDIC 2014 April 4, 2014

Posted by Jim Silvernail in Combat Ready for Suburbia.
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FDIC 2014

It is that time of year again! Let the learning and brotherhood commence!


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