Courses offered by Christopher J. Naum

Courses offered by Chief Christopher J. Naum, SFPE Command Institute and Buildingsonfire.com

Building Construction: Tactical Risks for the First-Due

If you’re going to command or tactically engage at a structure fire: you better understand the building; there is limited margin for error on today’s evolving fireground-Errors and Omissions are Unforgiving. The ability for the first-arriving company, company officer or commander to perform an accurate identification of building type, classification and vintage are formative toward anticipating variables in structural integrity and resiliency to the effects of rapid fire development or rapid fire behavior, accelerated fire load package growth rates and intensity levels typically encountered in today’s composition and arrangement of buildings and their associated construction systems during initial and sustained fire suppression. Arriving companies and personnel at a structure fire must be able to rapidly and accurately identify key elements of a building, process that data based upon a widening field of variables present on today’s evolving fireground and implement timely actions that address prioritized actions requiring intervention. This program will present tactical risks and key considerations for the First-Due Company, Company Officer, Commander and provide insights into integrated command and operational risk management, command and tactical safety and tactical protocols based upon occupancy risks and reading the building. Integrated group activities and case studies are incorporated to reinforce program objectives.

Reading the Building and Occupancy Risk

Today’s buildings and occupancies continue to present unique challenges to command and operating companies during combat structural fire engagement. Building and occupancy profiling, identifying occupancy risk versus occupancy type, construction methods, features, systems and components require new skill sets in reading the building and implementing predictive occupancy profiling for firefighters, company and command officers for effective and efficient fireground operations. Focusing on a wide variety of residential, commercial and multiple occupancy dwellings, the program will present leading insights on improved building size-up, risk assessment and determining and implementing appropriate tactical operations for today’s evolving fireground challenges, operations and incident management. Incorporating the Buildingsonfire FACTSTM concept for First-Arriving Construction, Tactics and Safety, this program provides a methodology and process to increase operational effectiveness and ensure critical building factors are identified, assessment and monitored throughout the incident.

Building Construction for Today’s Fire Service

Today’s buildings and occupancies present increasing challenges that have redefined strategic and tactical fireground operations and impact these operations on a wide variety of levels that often include adverse compartment fire conditions, structural compromise, collapse and predicable building performance. Presenting insights on building construction for today’s fire service, the primary objective of this program is to increase awareness and understandings and promote new skill sets in the fundamentals of building construction, architecture, engineering and design that directly impact firefighting operations at structure fires. Five fundamental areas integrating building and construction methodologies, will be threaded throughout the program related to Construction Systems, Occupancy Risks, Collapse & Compromise Characteristics, Methods & Materials and Fire Dynamics related to building anatomy, vintage and intrinsic building and occupancy characteristics assimilating comprehensive case studies, history repeating events, research findings and emerging fire suppression theory will be presented.

Fireground Operations at Buildings of Ordinary & Heavy Timber Construction

A fundamental building type that has profound operational considerations on the fireground that is commonly found in nearly all jurisdictions and response areas throughout the United States. This program goes beyond the cursory discussions of “main street” unreinforced masonry (URM) and reinforced masonry (RM) construction and occupancies, but expands and explores the complexities of this heritage and legacy construction system and their renovations, adaptive reuse, make-overs and fireground operations. A comprehensive overview of construction systems, materials and methods, inherent building characteristics, predictability of building performance, operational considerations, strategies and tactics with a focus on operational excellence and firefighter safety. Key Building Anatomy features, design and current architectural and design systems will be explored on this often neglected building system. Collapse zone identification and management with integrated case studies and discussion on adaptive use, integrated engineering components and how to effectively assess and operate at buildings of ordinary (type III) and heavy timber/mill & semi-mill (type IV) construction.

Firefighting Operations at Mega-Mansions

Today’s Residential homes are being built larger than ever, in all community settings from rural to suburban and urban contexts. These residential occupancies present many significant risks and operational challenges to commanders and firefighting companies. This comprehensive program will examine building construction, engineered systems and design configurations and characteristics of common mega-mansions – homes ranging from 4000 square feet to 10,000, 12,000, 15,000 and 20,000 SF. Predictability of Building Performance, Occupancy Risk and Reading the Building, Strategic Factors, Tactical Methodologies integrating the latest on fire behavior, flow path and compartment control with insights on accessibility, limited water supply factors and coordinated operational and incident management principles will be presented. Firefighting operations in these residential homes present significantly different operational models than the conventional home requiring command and company officers and firefighters to have increased knowledge and skill sets for safe operations.

Rebooting Old School Principles for Today’s Demanding Fireground

Much is being debated related to tactics, methodologies, practices and the learnings gleaned from emerging research and insights. What has today’s fireground evolved into when we talk about traditional firefighting operations and engagement? Has it remained constant-Has it changed? Do we continue to operate utilizing time proven methodologies or are we prepared to identify new adaptive methodologies and practices? Rebooting old school principals while incorporating lessons from the fireground, learnings from research and the improved understanding of the fireground and our buildings is paramount to operational excellence.

Buildings on Fire: Lessons from the Fireground

This program will present and lead through past History Repeating (HRE) Events and present leading insights and findings from pertinent case studies, NIOSH LODD Investigative Reports and After Actions Reports from select incidents for a facilitated examination of apparent and contributing factors and an analysis and review of recommendations and actions to preclude similar events on the local and regional level. Elements of effective and adaptive fireground leadership and the hard lessons learned will be presented in this highly interactive program. Extensive case studies are reviewed and applied to identify local and regional gaps and vulnerabilities and development of suggested corrective actions to preclude similar events. Integrated in the program will be discussions on emerging research can its effect on future strategies and tactics. Lessons from the fireground resonate with recommendations and actions that all fire departments and personnel must recognize and implement in future fireground operations in order to reduce operational risks and improve incident mitigation and structure fires