Dedicated Heavy Rescue Crew

Heavy Rescue Crew (Currently Unstaffed) Should Have a Dedicated Crew of 4 Members Ideally, At Least 3

A heavy rescue is a vehicle with specialized equipment for less common, but extremely dangerous, emergencies


Our heavy rescue is rarely staffed. It is only available if the crew of Tower Ladder 11 happens to be in quarters, and must delay their response while moving all of their personal gear over to the rescue. On numerous occasions, they have been unavailable or significantly  delayed because they were committed to another call. Once they move onto the rescue, we face the opposite problem – if a fire comes in, the most important truck in the department, the tower ladder, may be sitting back at the station. Finally, even when we’re above the minimum manning, the priority is to get the engines and trucks to NFPA minimum staffing, so practically there is currently almost no scenario when it is/should be staffed.

What the Experts Have to Say

NFPA 1710:

“ Each company shall be led by an officer who shall be considered a part of the company.”

New Rochelle Fire Study:

“desired… staffing… 4 [members on the]… Heavy rescue squad” (pg. 54)

“the City should consider staffing … the well-equipped heavy duty rescue squad to at least three” (p. 68)

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