New Year’s Resolutions for Your Fire Department

New Year’s Resolutions for Your Fire Department

Tuesday, 09 November 2021 09:57

It is hard to believe the holiday season is already upon us. This is one of the busiest times in the year for everyone, but especially firefighters and first responders. 

In our previous article, we wrote about the dangers associated with the holidays and how they impact the season for first responders. From Christmas tree fueled fires to excessive traffic on the roadways, your department may be inundated with calls as we approach the end of the year. 

As we approach New Year’s Eve, people are taking time to evaluate their goals. While it may be challenging to find time to prepare for the future at this point in the year, it is important to analyze your firehouse and determine how you can improve. 


This is the season to set new year’s resolutions for your department. 

SMART New Year’s Resolutions for Your Department

The vast majority of people, believe it or not, fail to keep their New Year's resolutions. 80% of Americans admit they don't follow through on the goals they set for the new year. 

Only 8% of people actually achieve all of their objectives. There are many reasons why people fail to keep their New Year's resolutions, but a big part of the problem is determining what kind of goal to establish. 

The same is true for organizations and, of course, firehouses. A good rule of thumb is to set SMART goals for your department. SMART stands for  Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. Here's how you can set SMART goals for your fire department:


If your goals are too vague, you will not know whether or not you met them. Make a specific resolution rather than a general one. For example, instead of setting a goal to respond more quickly to calls, you might take time to identify a type of call or a specific part of your jurisdiction in which to improve response time.

Make your resolutions something that you can track and measure. If your goal is to reduce the time it takes to reach a fire or traffic accident in your community, you might resolve to improve response time by a certain percentage. 


While it's vital to set New Year's resolutions that will push your department to improve, they must be possible and achievable. It may be impossible to reduce your department's response time to traffic accidents by 20%, but 1% might be too easy. 

Every second counts when it comes to emergencies so set a realistic goal that, if reached, will help save lives. 


Your department is less likely to be motivated to stick to your goals if they are not significant and relevant to your firefighters and paramedics. If your people cannot relate to your resolutions, it is going to be challenging to motivate them to accomplish them.


Your resolutions must be time-bound. You are considerably less likely to achieve your goals if there are no deadlines attached to them. If your goal is to reduce response time to a location by five percent by the end of the year, you should set benchmarks to reach each month or quarter. 

Types of New Year’s Resolutions for Departments 

Now that you have a framework in which to set your resolutions, your department can begin addressing needs and setting goals for improvement. Once a goal is set, you can then develop your plan for achieving it. If your goal is to reduce response time to a specific area by a certain percentage, achieving your goal might require:

  • Finding the right software to help you know exactly where your vehicles and personnel are at all times. 
  • Integrating data, knowledge, and navigation to you and dispatchers have a full picture of each situation. 
  • Ensuring maximum situational awareness for the safety and efficiency of each response. 
  • Where and when to expect traffic and the best routes to avoid vehicles, pedestrians and other apparatus.
  • Knowing exactly how many fire hydrants are in the area and the best path to take to reach them.
  • Improving the efficiency with which you gather information for incident pre-plans. 
  • Reducing the time it takes to access pre-plan data. 

StreetWise® is a suite of full-featured software products specifically designed for Fire & EMS. With every incident, Streetwise takes you from the firehouse to the scene and back with instant call alerting, customizable Google-based maps, live traffic, hydrant locations, tactical waypoints, live unit tracking with directional apparatus icons, and full pre-plan management.

What that means is that StreetWise is one of the best tools for achieving your department’s New Year’s resolutions. 

Our system replaces large, clunky laptops with sleek, efficient tablets, putting vital data in the palm of your hand. With StreetWise mobile response software, you can see substantial improvements to the way in which your firefighters and paramedics can respond to each call. 

For more information about StreetWise as the New Year approaches, contact us today