Guidelines for Media Response to Emergency Incidents
As a member of the working media, you may travel to various emergency incidents to report the event. The Boone County Fire District is an all hazard department, responding not only to fires, but also auto accidents, medical emergencies, water rescues, wilderness rescues, hazardous materials releases and brush fires, for example.
To assist you in quickly gathering the information you need in a manner that will guard your safety, we request you follow the guidelines below.
  1. You have 24-hour access to the Boone County Fire District Public Information Officer. We maintain a NEWS MEDIA HOTLINE and should you have a question related to an emergency event in Boone County, contact the Public Information Officer at 573-876-7600.
  2. When driving to the scene of an emergency, please follow all traffic laws. Do not try to keep up with an emergency vehicle should one pass you.
  3. When you arrive on the emergency scene, park your vehicle on the same side of the road as the emergency responders.
  4. Dress for the conditions. Emergency scenes are usually wet, muddy or full of debris.
  5. Report to the Command Post to locate the Public Information Officer (PIO). The Command Post is usually marked by a rotating green light or flag indicating “Command Post.” From here you will be directed to the media area and information officer. If you are unsure, ask any firefighter to assist you, or look for a firefighter with a white helmet, which indicates a command officer.
  6. Understand that during an emergency incident, the primary objective is to save lives and protect property. Information will be relayed to the press as quickly as possible. Persons assigned to assist you understand the deadlines you work under and will provide information as it becomes available.
  7. When you report to the media area and PIO, he/she will brief you as to dangers on the scene. In addition to emergency scenes being wet and muddy, they are also very dangerous. Walls can fall, power lines can come down and explosions may occur. You will not be restricted in your movements other than to keep you alive and uninjured.
  8. Following the incident, should additional information become available, it will be forwarded to your newsroom.
  9. Each morning, Monday through Friday we fax to each media outlet our daily MEDIA REPORT that lists the emergency incidents we have responded to in the last 24 hours. This report is also available via our web page,
Media Relations Program
The information we can and will release differs depending upon the nature of the emergency.
  • Property owner or occupant names
  • Address
  • Cause of the fire
  • Origin of the fire
  • Dollar estimate of damage and contents saved
  • Injuries
  • Numbers of firefighters, fire equipment involved
  • Special accomplishments, hazards
  • Other information as requested
  • Release of property owner, occupant or victims names, as allowed by law
  • Address of incident
  • Cause of accident, as allowed by law
  • Injury report
  • Hospital location where victims were transported
  • Numbers of firefighters, fire equipment involved
  • Special accomplishments, hazards
  • Other information as requested
By Missouri Regulatory Statues, we cannot release the following information:
  • Names of juveniles involved in an incident.
  • Information related to a criminal incident or investigation.
  • Generally, victim names are released by law enforcement agencies after the immediate family is notified.
The Public Information Officer (PIO) is charged with dissemination of information to the news media on the scene of an incident, as well as follow-up information that is not readily available on the scene (i.e. damage estimate, cause, etc.). This person is also available to augment existing communications and assist in contacting other Fire Protection District personnel for media interviews.
The Fire District enforces two policies pertaining to media relations that must be adhered to at all times:
  1. With the exception of the chief officers, the only Fire District personnel authorized to relay information to the news media, without prior approval, are the PIO or the Incident Commander (IC) of the emergency.
  2. At any time during the course of an incident involving private property, if the property owner asks that media representatives leave the premises, Fire District personnel will see that news media adhere to the property owner’s request. In the event this occurs, Fire District personnel will relay information to media outlets at a separate time and location.
Interviews for News & Feature Stories
The Boone County Fire District has a vast and experienced public safety team that is available for news and feature stories on various safety & survival topics. In order to answer the many questions reporters may have about a topic, we are experts in.
  • Fire safety & survival
  • Emergency medical care
  • Water safety & rescue
  • Ice safety & rescue
  • Weather safety & preparedness
  • Natural disaster preparedness
  • Wildland fires & response
  • Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)
  • Wilderness search & rescue
  • Hazardous materials use & response
  • Explosives and bomb disposal
  • All general safety topics, e.g. bikes, electrical, etc.
  • Holiday safety, e.g. fireworks, Christmas
  • Driving safety
  • Cold & hot weather preparedness and safety
  • Terrorism and emergency response
  • Safety devices and their use
  • Camping safety
  • Personal safety & strangers
  • Children safety & preparedness, babysitter tips
  • Firearm safety
Boone County Fire Protection District Facts and Figures
Population Served: 35,000
Area Served: 500 Square Miles
Number of Alarms Annually: 4,300 (average)
Personnel: 400+ (including those assigned to Missouri Task Force 1)
Number of Apparatus: 50

Specialized Teams within the Fire District

Missouri Task Force 1: Missouri Task Force 1 is a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Urban Search & Rescue (USAR) specialized disaster response team for catastrophic building collapses. USAR task forces were used extensively at the Murrah Federal Building bombing in Oklahoma City and the U.S. Embassy bombings in Africa. Only 28 of these specialized teams exist in the nation and can be deployed throughout the United States and its territories should a natural or man-made disaster occur. The Task Force consists of 62 highly trained rescue, medical, search and technical specialists, who must be able to leave with the Task Force at a moments notice and are trained to find persons trapped under tons of concrete and steel. Missouri Task Force 1 has cooperative agreements with the University of Missouri Hospital & Clinics, which provides the entire medical equipment cache, as well as emergency trauma surgeons, nurses and paramedics. The Task Force, designed to be self-contained for at least 96 hours, carries more than 16,200 pieces of equipment worth nearly $1.3 million.
Hazardous Materials Response Team: Responsible for hazardous material release response, evaluation, decontamination and incident control. Consists of fully encapsulated chemical suits, diking and absorbent materials, over pack drums, patch kits and monitoring equipment.
Wildland Fire Crew Members: A U.S. Forest Service (USFS) certified fire crew members who fight forest fires in the western United States during the summer fire season.
Technical Rescue Team: Trained in trench rescue, confined space rescue, urban (collapsed building) search and rescue, water rescue and high-angle vertical rescue.
Missouri Region F Type III Incident Support Team (IST) Team Members: Several Fire District members serve on the Region F Incident Support Team (IST). This team is deployed to support incident management operations for large-scale emergencies (i.e. train derailment, tornado, earthquake, etc.) within the State of Missouri Fire Mutual Aid System.
Communications Team: Develop communications plans, distribute communications equipment and provide dispatch services at major emergency and non-emergency incidents.
Fire Investigation Team: Investigate fire scenes at the request of the Incident Commander. Members are specially trained in fire and arson investigation.
Boone County Fire District Station Locations
Station 1
5910 E. St. Charles ad
Columbia, MO 65201
Station 2
104 Central Street
Rocheport, MO 65279
Station 3
400 Rt B
Hallsville, MO 65255
Station 4
685 E. Sexton
Harrisburg, MO 65255
Station 5
1675 E. Prathersville Rd
Columbia, MO 65202
Station 6
201 E. Wall St.
Sturgeon, MO 65284
Station 7
Dripping Springs Area
Station 8
5801 S. Route K
Columbia, MO 65203
Station 9
6951 W. Henderson Rd.
Columbia, MO 65202
Station 10
11481 E. Highway CC
Centralia, MO 65240
Station 12
980 S. El Chaparral Ave.
Columbia, MO 65201
Station 13
4801 North Route E
Columbia, MO 65202
Station 14
Scott & Vawter School Rd
Columbia, MO 65203
Station 15
Deer Park Area
Apparatus By Station
Station 1 - Columbia - Lake of the Woods
Engine Mini Pumper
Tanker Boat
Rescue Squad  
Station 2 - Rocheport
Engine Mini Pumper
Station 3 – Hallsville
Engine Mini Pumper
Tanker Boat
Reserve Tanker Reserve Engine
Station 4 - Harrisburg
Engine Mini Pumper
Tanker Reserve Brush Truck
Reserve Tanker  
Station 5 – Prathersville
Engine Super Tanker
Tanker Mini Pumper
Station 6 - Sturgeon
Engine Mini Pumper
Tanker Rescue Squad
Station 7 - Dripping Springs
Station 8 - Columbia/Route K
Engine Boat
Tanker Reserve Engine
Mini Pumper Parade Engine
Station 9 – Midway
Engine Mini Pumper
Tanker Boat
Reserve Tanker Reserve Engine
Station 10 - Centralia
Engine Tanker
Station 12 - Columbia/El Chaparral
Engine Reserve Engine
Station 13 - Columbia/Route E
Station 14 - Columbia/Route K
Engine Mini Pumper
Station 15 - Deer Park
Public Safety Radio Frequencies
The Boone County Fire District operates on an assigned frequency of 154.430 MHZ VHF. All emergency dispatch alarms and pertinent information are transmitted over this frequency.
The Joint Communications & Information Center (JCIC) located in Columbia at the Police Building does all dispatching of alarms to the Fire District.
Other fire & law radio frequencies in the area:
Boone County Fire District Dispatch 154.430 MHZ
State Fire Mutual Aid 154.280 MHZ
Columbia FD Dispatch 154.190 MHZ
Fireground Tactical Operations 154.115 MHZ
Emergency Medical Services 155.340 MHZ
Main Law Enforcement Columbia & Boone County 155.310 MHZ
Law Enforcement Point-to-Point 155.370 MHZ
Law Enforcement Mutual Aid 155.475 MHZ
Missouri State Highway Patrol 42.120 MHZ
Missouri State Highway Patrol 42.060 MHZ
Osage Beach FD 155.985 MHZ
Lake Ozark FD 154.220 MHZ
Jefferson City FD 154.400 MHZ
Callaway County FD’s 153.770 MHZ
Cooper County FD’s 154.325 MHZ
Randolph County FD’s 155.100 MHZ
Howard County FD’s 155.940 MHZ
Helmet Color Code
The Boone County Fire District uses a helmet color code system for identification of personnel on the scene of an emergency. The system is as follows:
Chief and Command Level Officers:
White helmet
Station Personnel:
White Helmet – Captain
Yellow Helmet – Lieutenant
Red Helmet - Firefighter
Orange Helmet - Firefighter Recruit
Blue Helmet - EMS Responder
Vehicle Number System
Each vehicle in the Fire District has an assigned number. The first number in the sequence represents the station where the apparatus is stationed. The next two numbers indicate the vehicle’s use. Example: 101 - Station 1 Engine; 505 - Station 5 Tanker.
    XX01 - Engine
    XX02 - Special Duty
    XX03 - Engine (Reserve Status)
    XX04 - Rescue Squad
    XX05 - Tanker
    XX06 - Natural Cover Fire Vehicle
    XX07 - Boat
    XX08 - Service/Maintenance Vehicle
    XX09 - Emergency Medical Squad
    XX10 - Engine (Reserve status)
    XX15 - Station Captain
    XX16 - Station Lieutenant
    XX17 - Station Lieutenant
    XX18- Station Lieutenant
Radio Identifiers:
    100 Fire Chief
    112 First Assistant Chief
    20-29 Assistant Chiefs
    30-39 Battalion Chiefs
    40-99 Special Service
    1xx-14xx Station Assignments
    xx15 Station Captain
    xx16 Station Lieutenant
    xx17 Station Lieutenant
    Example: 115 - Station One Captain;
    1016 - Station Ten Lieutenant;
Emergency Incidents
Emergency incidents are usually categorized by the amount of equipment used. Equipment is dispatched according to the severity of the emergency.
A small assignment usually requiring one engine, ladder or ambulance. EXAMPLES: Car fire, ambulance call, dumpster fire, checking the building for fire.
A supply of engine companies and tankers supplemented by a ladder, a rescue squad and a chief. Usually two or three engines, one or two tankers, one ladder and one chief respond to a first or box alarm. This is the standard response, whether the structure is residential or commercial.
An additional supply of engines, tankers and/or ladders to supplement equipment already involved in fire fighting operations. A general rule is that often the same numbers of units are sent on additional alarms as responded to the first alarm.
A major incident where all equipment is specially called. Usually all assigned equipment for the area is depleted and units must be requested as needed.
Alarm Types
RESIDENTIAL STRUCTURE FIRE: A fire in any single-family dwelling. Usual response includes: two engines, two tankers, one rescue squad and one ambulance unit.
COMMERCIAL STRUCTURE FIRE: Any structure fire involving a multiple family dwelling or commercial business. Usual response to this incident includes: two engines, two tankers, one rescue squad and one ambulance unit.
TECHNICAL RESCUE:Any situation in which a life may be in danger (i.e. drowning, building collapse, climbing accident, etc.). Usual response includes: one engine, one rescue squad and one ambulance unit.
ACCIDENT WITH EXTRICATION: An automobile accident in which the occupants are trapped. Usual response includes: one engine, one rescue squad and one ambulance unit.
ACCIDENT WITH INJURIES: A vehicle accident with injured persons. Usual response includes: one engine and one ambulance unit.
MEDICAL EMERGENCY: Any incident involving illness or trauma not related to a motor vehicle accident or rescue. Usual response includes: One engine and one ambulance unit.
INVESTIGATION: Any incident in which actual emergency situation may be unknown, such as smoke in the area.
ASSIST A CITIZEN: Any incident in which a citizen needs assistance (i.e. water in the basement, person locked in car, etc.). Usual response includes: one engine or one tanker, depending on the situation.
NATURAL COVER FIRE: An incident involving burning grass, weeds or other natural ground cover. Response generally includes: one engine and one grass truck.
VEHICLE FIRE: An incident involving fire in a motor vehicle. Usual response includes one engine.
VEHICLE FIRE OVER ONE TON: An incident involving fire in a motor vehicle weighing more than one ton (i.e. gasoline tanker, motor home, farm combine, etc.). Usual response includes: one engine and one tanker.
HAZARDOUS MATERIALS INCIDENT: An incident involving the uncontrolled release or spill of a designated hazardous material. This event may present risk to persons or the environment. Usual response includes: two engines, two tankers, one rescue squad, one ambulance unit, hazardous materials unit and team.
MISCELLANEOUS INCIDENTS: Include carbon monoxide detector soundings, gas odors outside, etc.
Helicopter Operations
The Boone County Fire District routinely uses helicopters in its emergency operations. The most frequently used aircraft is Staff for Life 1, the air medical helicopter based at the University of Missouri Hospital & Clinics in Columbia.
If a medical emergency warrants helicopter transport, the helicopter is requested by the Fire Department and responds. Firefighters on the scene locate and establish a landing zone and provide assistance to the helicopter and medical flight crew as needed.
Basic criteria for requesting the helicopter can include, but is not limited to:
  • life threatening traumatic injury from an auto accident;
  • life threatening illness such as cardiac arrest;
  • distance from hospital.
If you are on the scene of an emergency when the helicopter is arriving or departing please follow these safety guidelines.
  • Do not take flash photographs or shoot video using a floodlight. This can blind the pilot and flight crew at night.
  • Hold onto personal belongings such as hats. The rotor wash can blow these off.
  • Do not approach the helicopter unless told to do so by the pilot or flight crew. NEVER approach from the rear due to the danger of the tail rotor.
  • Follow other directions of firefighters or flight crew.
Aircraft Emergency Alerts
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has classed aircraft emergencies into three levels of response based upon problems in the aircraft.
Alert 1: Minor problem and the pilot would like emergency equipment standing by. Examples include warning lights and low fuel indicators.
Alert 2: Major problem with the possibility of crash. Examples include loss of landing gear function or fire on board.
Alert 3: Aircraft has crashed
Small: Recreational aircraft
Large: Commercial passenger aircraft (e.g. TWE, Ozark)
Ambulance Locations Serving Boone County
Medic 151 Boone Hospital Ambulance
Boone Hospital - Columbia
Medic 111 Boone Hospital Ambulance
Vandiver Base - Columbia
Medic 211 UMC Ambulance
University Hospital - Columbia
Medic 221 UMC Ambulance
Ellis Fischel Hospital - Columbia
Medic 231 UMC Ambulance
Woodrail Base - Columbia
Medic 131 Boone Hospital Ambulance
Boone Hospital Clinic - Centralia
Medic 241 UMC Ambulance
UMC Ambulance Base - Ashland
Accident and Injury Classifications
Trauma Classifications - Level of injury or illness.
Trauma Alert - Life threatening injuries with unstable vital signs.
Class 3 - Non-life threatening injuries.
Accident Classifications - Relate to motor vehicle, fire or medical incidents.
J-1 - Minor incident, no injuries.
J-2 -Incident with injuries, ambulance needed.
J-3 - Road blocked by incident.
J-4 - Fatality involved.
Fire Departments Serving Boone County
Boone County Fire Protection District
Scott Olsen, Fire Chief
2201 I-70 Drive NW
Columbia, Missouri 65202
Phone: 573.447.5000
Fax: 573.447.5099
Columbia Fire Department
Bill Markgraf, Fire Chief
P.O. Box N
Columbia, Missouri 65205
Phone: 573.874.7391
Fax: 573.875.5518
Southern Boone County Fire District
Roger Jaeger, Fire Chief
P.O. Box 199
Ashland, Missouri 65010
Phone: 573.657.2370
Centralia Fire Department
Marvin Rodgers, Fire Chief
Centralia City Fire Station #1
Centralia, Missouri 65240
Phone: 573.682.2535
Law Enforcement Serving Boone County
Boone County Sheriff’s Department
Dwayne Carey, Sheriff
2121 County Drive
Columbia, Missouri 65202
Phone: 573.875.1111
Fax: 573.874.8953
Columbia Police Department
Ken Burton, Police Chief
600 E. Walnut
Columbia, Missouri 65205
Phone: 573.874.7404
Centralia Police Department
Larry Dudgeon, Police Chief
114 S. Rollins
Centralia, Missouri 65240
Phone: 573.682.2132
Hallsville Police Department
Tony Fields, Police Chief
P.O. Box 170
Hallsville, Missouri 65255
Phone: 573.696.3838
Sturgeon Police Department
P.O. Box 387
Sturgeon, Missouri 65284
Phone: 573.687.3300
Ashland Police Department
Anthony Consiglio, Police Chief
P.O. Box 135
Ashland, Missouri 63010
Phone: 573.657.9062
State Fire Marshal’s Office
Randy Cole, Fire Marshal
P.O. Box 844
Jefferson City, Missouri 65102
Phone: 573.751.2930
Fax: 573.751.1744
Missouri State Highway Patrol
Troop F
P.O. Box 568
Jefferson City, Missouri 65102
Phone: 573.751.1000
Missouri State Water Patrol
P.O. Box 136A
Jefferson City, Missouri 65102
Phone: 573.751.3333
Hospitals With Emergency Care Capabilities Serving Boone County
Boone Hospital Center
1600 East Broadway
Columbia, Missouri 65201
Phone: 573.875.4545
Fax: 573.876.2666
University Hospitals and Clinics
One Hospital Drive
Columbia, Missouri 65212
Phone: 573.882.4141
Columbia Regional Hospital
404 Keene Street
Columbia, Missouri 65201
Phone: 573.875.9000
Agencies Supporting Fire and EMS in Boone County
Missouri Fire and Rescue Training Institute
David Hedrick, Director
1001 Ashland Gravel Road
Columbia, Missouri 65201
Phone: 573.882.4735
Joint Communications and Information Center
Zim Schwartze, Director
P.O. Box N
Columbia, Missouri 65202
Phone: 573.874.7401
Fax: 573.882.0678
AIR PACK, SCBA (Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus): Respiratory protective mask and tank worn by firefighters that contain their own breathing air supply.
AIRWAY: A medical term referring to the passageway from the mouth/nose to the lungs of a patient. Also refers to the plastic devices used by medical personnel to keep this passage open.
ALARM: A notification to respond to an emergency.
APPARATUS: Any fire department vehicle.
APPARATUS OPERATOR: Engineer, driver, aerial ladder operator or anyone acting in any one of these positions.
APPARATUS FLOOR: The portion of a fire station on which fire trucks are parked.
ARSON: The willful and malicious burning of the property of another. Can also refer to the intentional burning on one’s own property.
ATTACK: Any action to control a fire.
AUDIBLE ALARM: An alarm actuated by heat/smoke, flame-sensing devices or the water flow in a sprinkler system.
BACKDRAFT: An explosion of a hot, smoldering fire caused by a sudden inrush of oxygen into the previously smoldering fire.
BACK PACK PUMP: A tank-type extinguisher carried on the back of a firefighter and used primarily in natural cover firefighting.
BATTALION: A division within the fire department, usually containing a number of companies.
BIG LINE: Large diameter fire hose used to connect a hydrant to a fire engine for water supply. Big line dimensions can be 2 ½”, 4”, 5" or 6".
BLEVE (Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion): Catastrophic explosion of pressurized vapors from pressurized tank such as propane or anhydrous ammonia tanks.
BOOSTER LINE: Small diameter hose wound onto a reel on a fire apparatus. Generally used for small fires such as brush and trash.
BOOSTER TANK: Water tank built into a fire apparatus. Usually holds between 250 and 1000 gallons of water. This water can be used until hose lines are laid to a hydrant.
BOX: The fire alarm box often seen on street corners and in hallways of schools and commercial buildings. Usually given a location number, this number can be used by engine companies to determine exact locations when responding to a fire.
BOX ALARM: Term indicating a level of response where engines/tankers/ladders would respond. Same as First Alarm.
BUREAU: A major subdivision within the fire department: Fire Prevention Bureau, Training Bureau, etc.
CAR: Radio term for officer’s vehicle.
CATCH A HYDRANT/PLUG: To dismount from fire apparatus at a hydrant, connect fire hose to the hydrant and supply the engine company with water.
CHARGED LINE: A line of hose loaded with water under pressure and ready to use.
CHECKING THE BUILDING: Fire size-up term used when equipment arrives on the scene of an incident and no fire or smoke are visible. The act of determining if there is an actual fire. Same as Investigation.
CHIEF: The chief administrative officer of the fire department and chief command officer at any fire. All bureaus report to the Chiefs office.
COMMAND POST: A location, established by the Incident Commander of an incident, at which management directs fire operations. Normal location for Public Information Officer or Press Liaison.
COMPANY: A designated number of emergency equipment. Typically, a fire engine is considered an engine company. A tanker is considered a tanker company.
DELUGE GUN/DECK PIPE/MULTIVERSAL/MONITOR: A master stream appliance (hose) on top of an engine.
DRAFT: The process of taking water from a static source (i.e. pond, lake, portable tank, etc.) with an engine.
EMS: Emergency Medical Services
ENGINE: Firefighting vehicle that carries water and hose. Also referred to as a Pumper.
ENGINE COMPANY: Firefighting unit that provides extinguishment and basic emergency medical service.
EXPOSURE: An object, such as a building or other structure, in the proximity of a fire and in danger of being ignited by the fire’s heat.
FALSE ALARM: An alarm given with malicious intent or without reason.
FIRE DEPARTMENT CONNECTION/SPRINKLER CONNECTION: Connections provided at ground level on a building through which the fire department supplies water to a building for fire suppressions.
FIRST ALARM: See Box Alarm.
FLASHOVER: The stage of a fire in which a room or other confined area becomes heated to the point that flames flash over the entire surface of the area igniting all contents.
HOUSE LINE: A hose line in a building for firefighting in that building. Interior standpipe hose often seen in hallways or stairwells of hotels.
IMMEDIATE FAMILY: Father, mother, brother, sister, spouse or child.
INCIDENT COMMANDER: The person in charge of the emergency scene.
INCIDENT COMMAND SYSTEM (ICS): Method of managing resources at the scene of an emergency.
IN-SERVICE: When an apparatus is available to respond to an alarm.
INVESTIGATION: See Checking the Building.
KNOCK DOWN: Phase of fire extinguishment where the fire is reduced to a semi-extinguished state, inhibiting its spread.
LADDER: A piece of fire fighting apparatus that carries an aerial ladder used for rescue and positioning of personnel on upper floors of a building. Also called Truck or Aerial.
LEAD OFF: Term that indicates that hose is being laid from the hydrant to the engines on the scene to provide water for fire fighting. Also referred to as Dropping the Line or Laying a Line.
LOOM-UP: A column of smoke indicating the presence of fire.
MAKE THE ALARM: A call for additional personnel, an additional piece of apparatus or a second alarm.
MARK THE INCIDENT UNDER CONTROL: Sufficient personnel and apparatus on the scene to handle the incident. Does not mean the incident has been completed. The latter will be indicated by all personnel and apparatus clearing the scene.
MOVE-UP: Signal for a station to move apparatus to another fire station in the district when the first station has exhausted its personnel and apparatus on an incident. This occurs primarily when more than one emergency is occurring in adjoining geographical areas.
MUTUAL AID: An agreement with neighboring fire departments that provides for mutual assistance in the event additional equipment is needed.
NURSE TANKER: A water tanker used to supply a Pumper and other tankers in turn supply that.
OPEN-UP: The process of effecting entry into a burning structure. The opening of windows and doors and cutting holes for ventilation.
OUT-OF-SERVICE: A piece of apparatus is not in a position to respond to an alarm. Generally, the apparatus needs fuel or water or is out for routine maintenance.
OVERHAUL: The final operation at a fire. Investigating the entire premise to determine that no more fire exists. There is also removal of some building contents for this purpose.
PLUG: Fire hydrant.
PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER (PIO): Officer responsible for relaying information to the media on the scene of an incident.
PUMPER: See Engine.
PRECONNECT/ PRECONNECTED LINE/ CROSS LAY: An attack line of any size that is preattached to a discharge outlet of an engine. Cross lays are normally 1-½ inches or 1 3/4 inches in size. Also called Jiffy, Skid or Big Line.
RELAY: The use of two or more pumpers to move water distances that would require excessive pressure if only one Pumper was used.
REVERSY LAY: A hose layout from the fire to the water supply that places a Pumper at the water supply.
RUN: The action of a fire company responding to an alarm. Usually includes its return. Same as Call.
SAR: Search and rescue
SALVAGE: Operation of reducing the damage to non-damaged goods within a structure that has burned. Example: covering furniture with salvage covers to prevent water damage.
SIMULCASTING: Any time the dispatch center simultaneously dispatches an alarm on more than one radio frequency.
SIZE-UP: The verbal appraisal via radio of conditions at the scene of an incident by the first-in company or officer. May be updated as command officers arrive on the scene.
STEAMER CONNECTION: A fire hydrant connection usually from 4 ½ inches to 6 inches in diameter.
STRAIGHT LAY/FORWARD LAY: A hose layout from the water supply to the fire that places an engine at the fire.
SQUAD: A piece of apparatus especially equipped for rescue and extrication.
TANKER: A piece of apparatus used to carry water to the scene of a fire.
TANKER SHUTTLE: The act of transferring water from a direct water supply via tankers to the fire.
TRANSMITTING BOX: A geographic area.
VENTILATE: The operation of opening windows, doors and cutting holes in a building for the purpose of removing smoke, heat and fire gases. This action facilitates an improved working environment for firefighters, as well as reducing smoke and fire damage to the contents of the building.
WATERGUN: A pressurized water fire extinguisher.
WORKER: A fire that requires a major fire fighting effort to extinguish. Also called a Working Fire.

®2016 Boone County Fire Protection District, Columbia, Missouri