The human brain in fireground decision-making: trustworthy firefighting equipment?

Sallis, Geoffrey and Catherwood, Dianne F and Edgar, Graham K and Medley, Andrew and Brookes, David (2013) The human brain in fireground decision-making: trustworthy firefighting equipment? International Fire Professional, 5. pp. 21-24.

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Abstract

The research programme to date has involved studies of the response of Fire and Rescue (FRS) crew and commanders in fireground training situations and simulations (tabletop, BA and incident command exercises). The studies have revealed patterns and tendencies with potentially serious consequences for real FRS situations. The main conclusion from these studies is that the fire personnel involved were well-trained professionals with good “Situation Awareness” (SA) or knowledge of the incident under study, but there was also evidence of “bias” in decision-making leading to either a tunneling or broadening of focus that may respectively produce “miss” or “false alarm” errors. This tendency is linked to the limits of the human brain under pressure and could explain tragic errors of decision-making such as may have occurred in real-life fire incidents.

Item Type: Article
Article Type: Article
Additional Information: A version of this paper won the FIRE/GORE prize at the 2012 Fire-related Research and Developments Conference
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Business, Computing and Applied Sciences > School of Natural & Social Sciences > Psychological Sciences
Research Priority Areas: Sport, Exercise, Health & Wellbeing
Depositing User: Anne Pengelly
Date Deposited: 18 Aug 2015 10:23
Last Modified: 29 Jun 2016 05:02
URI: http://eprints.glos.ac.uk/id/eprint/2511

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