New Online Training Provides Research-Based Considerations for Firefighters Conducting Search and Rescue Tactics

UL’s Fire Safety Research Institute (FSRI) has released a new Search and Rescue Tactics in Single-Family Single-Story Residential Structures online course, developed with support from the Study of Fire Service Residential Home Size-up and Search & Rescue project technical panel. Available through the FSRI Fire Safety Academy, this course shares tactical considerations stemming from FSRI research that can be employed to minimize occupant and firefighter exposures during search and rescue operations in single-family, single-story residential structures.

After taking this course, firefighters will be able to:

  • Identify how isolation impacts firefighter and occupant survivability during various search and rescue operations.
  • Describe how the timing of suppression impacts search and rescue operations and firefighter and occupant survivability.
  • Explain how search and rescue operations may be influenced by differing occupant removal situations.

FSRI encourages firefighters to continue the conversation at their station utilizing new supplemental resources to take a deeper dive into the research, discuss ways to integrate considerations into training and fireground operations, and conduct their own time to task drills.

“In the decade prior to this study, fires in the United States were down 3% but fire deaths were up 24%. And while the fire service doesn’t control all the factors that contribute to these deaths, we do own some of them,” said Christopher Finelli, technician, District of Columbia Fire and EMS Department. “So, from the arrival on scene of a fire and for the next 6 to 8 minutes, we go from controlling none of the factors to controlling almost all of them. And this course and the tactical considerations that are presented are aimed to maximize those 6 to 8 minutes of time that we have to improve the probability of survival for the public we serve.”

“Being a part of this study provided my agency some great opportunities to learn about where we were effective, where we had room to improve, and help steer our training programs to be more effective,” said David Wolf, chief, Estes Valley Fire Protection District, CO. “I hope you’ll take this course and use this information for your own agency and take this challenge to look at your own agency and address those gaps in training opportunities.”

Click here to access the course via the FSRI Fire Safety Academy.
Click here to watch an intro video to the course.

If your crew has recently performed a rescue/removal on the fireground, help us tie these tactical considerations to real data from the street by filling out the Firefighter Rescue Survey. Created for firefighters and by firefighters, this data will help guide future research and training.

About Fire Safety Research Institute
UL’s Fire Safety Research Institute (FSRI) strives to advance fire safety knowledge and strategies in order to create safer environments. Using advanced fire science, rigorous research, extensive outreach, and education in collaboration with an international network of partners, the organization imparts stakeholders with knowledge, tools, and resources that enable them to make better, more fire safe decisions that ultimately save lives and property. To learn more, visit Follow FSRI on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

About UL Research Institutes
UL Research Institutes is a nonprofit research organization dedicated to advancing the UL public safety mission through scientific discovery and application. With best-in-class experts, we are the world’s premier safety science research organization. We conduct rigorous independent research, analyze safety data, and explore at the edges of technology to be the first to uncover and act on emerging risks to human safety. To learn more, visit