One of the most difficult parts of a Fire Officer Interview are the scenario questions. The candidate has to listen to the scenario, reference SOP/SOGs and formulate a strategy and tactics to effectively mitigate the emergency. Proper size up and accounting for scene safety is critical. Here is a scenario that was given to Fire Captain candidates in California recently.

Scenario: You are called to a smell of gas at a duplex at 1am. The response consists of three engines, one ladder truck, and a heavy rescue unit. You arrive on scene and take command. The resident states she can smell something funny in her unit and things it may be gas. She states that she doesn’t know if her neighbor is home.

Example Answer: This is a very typical call in the fire service. As command the first thing I want to do is ensure the arriving apparatus are positioned correctly. I will instruct my engineer to position our engine two houses down past the address, following our SOP on natural gas leaks inside a residence. I will also instruct my second due pumper to stand by at the hydrant, and the third due company to stage in an appropriate staging area, and prepare to be a RIT team.  I want the ladder truck to stage two houses short of the address, and the rescue to stage in the staging area. I will send my medic and firefighter into the unit with full PPE and a gas detector. I will have the rescue crew evacuate the other unit of the duplex and use a gas detector to check it. If any gas is detected we will immediately shut off the gas supply to the home and lock out the meter. I will notify the gas company, and my battalion chief of a locked out meter. We will then ventilate all affected units either naturally or with PPV depending on how much gas we detected. Once the hazard has been removed I will clear the additional units from the scene. I will also work with the citizen to ensure they have family they can stay with for the night, or a place to go. Our Fire Department Chaplin has the ability to get hotel rooms for displaced families if necessary.

This question has been added to our Fire Officer Interview ebook.

Fire Officer Interview Questions