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Lookouts, communication, escape routes, safety zones

Author(s): Paul Gleason
Year Published: 1991

In a presentation to the USDA Forest Service's national Fire and Aviation Staff, Gleason provides a clear overview of his proposed Lookouts, Communication, Escape Routes, Safety Zones (LCES) method of training firefighters for greater safety. After defining LCES, he discusses how it should be implemented on the ground. He emphasizes the importance of lookouts, span of leadership control, safety zones on downhill and indirect fire lines, floating divisions, and wildland/urban interference. He cites ignorance, casualness, and distraction as the primary causes of firefighter accidents. Supervisors must ensure that basic fire behavior and suppression skills are learned and reviewed, that shelters are not used as a safety net to justify unwise behavior, and that firefighters on the fire line monitor one another and keep communications lines open (summary from Larson et al., 2007, USDA Forest Service Gen. Tech. Rep. RMRS-GTR-201, p.7)

Citation: Gleason, Paul. 1991. Lookouts, communication, escape routes, safety zones. Unpublished presentation. Available: https://www.fireleadership.gov/toolbox/documents/lces_gleason.html
Topic(s): Fire Behavior, Fire Safety Zones, Human Dimensions of Fire Management, Human Factors of Firefighter Safety
Ecosystem(s): None
Document Type: Management or Planning Document
NRFSN number: 15460
Record updated: May 31, 2018