Fire Suppression Management

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Course description

This course is a required or elective in the Certificate in Fire Service Administration

Prerequisite: None

There are five units in this course.
Unit One concentrates on defining ways in which the threat of fire can be objectively measured. It includes discussion of how you assign priorities to surveying buildings, and how these surveys should be conducted.
Unit Two is based on recognition of a community's fire threat. Since water remains the principal extinguishing agent, this unit primarily concerns itself with the calculation of Required Fire Flow.  This constitutes the "demand" for fire suppression.  The "supply" of fire suppression entails water transport. This issue is considered for above ground (primarily rural) and below ground (primarily urban) water transport systems.
Unit Three introduces students to the basics of analyzing data to assist in decision making.
Unit Four addresses fire suppression location.  This issue arises not because urban sprawl requires more stations but also because fiscal restraint and municipal amalgamation can lead to station closure.
Unit Five tackles the issue of fire suppression management from both a rational and political perspective and explores the differences between these two approaches.

Learning objectives

Unit One

By reading this first unit you should be able to:

  • assign priorities to the buildings which should be surveyed,
  • know how to conduct a building survey.

Unit Two

By reading Unit two you should be able to:

  1. Calculate required water flow based on the:
    a)    Iowa State University Formula
    b)    National Fire Academy Formula
    c)    NFPA 1142 Standard
  2. Explain the assumptions which underlie each formula name above
  3. Explain the effects of required water flow on
    a)    training requirements
    b)    apparatus and equipment requirements
    c)    personnel requirements
    d)    station location
  4. Calculate hydrant flow rate
  5. Explain the different methods of water transport in unserviced areas and the criteria for method selection

Unit Three

By reading third unit you should understand how analysis leads to decision making

Unit Four

By reading this fourth unit you should be able to:

  1. Identify the criteria which affect fire station location,
  2. Identify the trends which alter the criteria which affect fire station location,
  3. Identify processes of group decision making which produce acceptable decisions on fire station location.

Unit Five

By reading this fifth unit you should be able to:

  1. differentiate between rational and political perspectives on fire suppression management
  2. explain the ICMA fire protection system model
  3. identify the factors which do (not should) determine the municipal budget for fire suppression

Course author

Bruce Morrison, BBA, AIT
Bruce Morrison served as Fire Chief of the City of Moncton from 1992 to 2001. During his career he has had extensive specialist training in emergency medical services, disaster services and the handling of hazardous materials. He was Fire Chief in Oromocto NB from 1985 until his appointment to the City of Moncton and served with the Dartmouth Fire Department in Nova Scotia for approximately eleven years prior to that. Bruce also served several years with the Waverly volunteer fire department and is a life member of that department.

Currently Bruce serves as the Emergency Services Supervisor for Lanxess Inc an international chemical company. His role as supervisor includes managing a fire department, plant security department, river spill team and a hazardous materials response team that responds to incidents in both Canada and the United States. Bruce is also responsible for all plant fire protection and safety systems and emergency planning.

As an administrator, Bruce Morrison has served in many capacities on provincial, regional and national fire service and related industrial and government organizations. He has served as President of the New Brunswick Association of Fire Chiefs, as a Director on the Board of the Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs, and as President of the International Association of Fire Chiefs - Canadian Division.

He also served on the Major Industrial Accident Coordinating Council of Canada’s Technical Management Committee, as well as their Emergency Response — 2000 and Beyond steering committee and chaired the Task Force on Shelter in Place versus Evacuation. In addition to his position with MIACC he also served on the Federal Transport Minister’s Policy Advisory Committee on the Transportation of Dangerous Goods.

Bruce co-authored a book on HAZMAT response teams and a decontamination guide. In the private industry, he has been a fire protection consultant with a number of firms. He is a recognized expert in Fire Cause Determination and Origin, Court of Queens Bench, Province of New Brunswick. Bruce is also trained as an international delegate with the Canadian Red Cross and is on standby status for response to global disasters and international missions.



“I have been a fire service officer for many years and have achieved certification in many NFPA disciplines such as 1021 and level II, 1041 level II, 1001 level II, 1051 level I, 1081 Brigade Leader, 1006 Rope Technician and many more. I have completed the ICS program to the 400 level and have taken management level courses including a designation in CMP. The Dalhousie CFSA has been a very beneficial program to my professional and personal development. It deals with real life situations and scenarios and the course content has been very helpful in my day to day career as a fire service officer. From the online discussions and interaction with students from across Canada to the in depth readings and assignments for each course, there has been a great deal of knowledge and even experience that I have achieved form the CFSA program. The instructors are active fire service officers that bring a wealth of experience to the table as well as the different experience levels from the students in each class."

Steve Douglas, Deputy Fire Chief Sturgeon County AB