Equipment Operator Fire Safety
&
Fire Attack Procedures


PART TWO - Section 2 Legal Stuff


PART TWO - TABLE OF CONTENTS

Sections 1 - 8

  1. Heavy Equipment Varieties
  2. Legal Stuff - the law and you
  3. Operating Cost Issues
  4. General Equipment Concerns
  5. Specific Equipment Uses
  6. Equipment and the I.C.S. (Incident Command System)
  7. Building the Fireline / Guard or Fuel Break
  8. Safety Concerns

Sec 1    Sec 2    Sec 3    Sec 4    Sec      Sec 6    Sec 7    Sec 8 


... an emergency situation does not give you (the operator) the right to drive and operate your equipment anywhere you please OR anywhere you are told to go ...

Case in Point - 

In British Columbia, Canada, some time back - while fighting a forest fire, a bulldozer operator was told to drive his machine through and across a stream in order to go to another area of the fire.  He carried out those instructions as he was told. (the stream was fish bearing)

A short time later a Fisheries Officer chanced upon the crossing area.  Subsequently the operator of the equipment was charged and given a VERY HEFTY fine for driving through this riparian (wetland, stream, water course) area.


It is not possible for this course to know and list all the various rules and regulations for operating equipment in YOUR area.  

YOU MUST LEARN AND MAKE YOURSELF AWARE OF ANY LAWS, RESTRICTIONS, ETC. THAT WILL DICTATE TO YOU WHERE AND HOW YOU OPERATE YOUR SPECIFIC TYPE OF EQUIPMENT.

The list below is just a partial list of what could be much larger

  • wildlife conservation areas
  • private land
  • federal or state / provincial parks or reserves
  • city, village, or municipal properties
  • areas designated for no fire control or suppression 
  • areas designated where NO mechanized machinery is permitted

2.0 - The LEGAL Stuff - The LAW and YOU

(we are not lawyers / solicitors however with a basis as a former Forest Officer / Peace Officer, the basic points will be discussed - we are interested in helping you to be able to minimize any type of losses, be they physical or financial)


2.1 - Permission / Authority

Your Authority to operate ...

  • you must trained and qualified on that specific type
  • you must have permission from equipment owner
  • a valid equipment hire agreement / contract must be in place

2.2 - Contracts

There may be more than one occasion you encounter (may already have had this experience) whereby you are asked / told / demanded, to get a specific piece of heavy equipment started and take it "over there" and start to "fight that fire" NOW!

(SEE 2.1)

Below are some but not all items that should be in a Contract - In no specific order;  MUST

  • describes the nature of work to be carried out
  • describes the general location
  • describes in detail the financial reimbursement for the equipment
  • have an "out clause" for both contractor and contractee
  • be signed by both parties and who have that aurthority
  • show legal description of equipment (i.e. make, model, serial number, etc.)
  • indicate any required or supplied accessories and their rates
  • be able to show prove of insurance by owner OR prove of insurance by the agency hiring the equipment

NOTE -  Your standard insurance policy for equipment will probably NOT BE VALID FOR PURPOSES OF FIRE FIGHTING ACTIVITIES.

(This is probably true for other emergency work (i.e. flood abatement work)

Therefore - it is common for the agency hiring the equipment (for these types of actives) to provide the necessary insurance.  This MUST also be noted in the CONTRACT.


NEXT PAGE - Section 3

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