The SAFENET form and process was designed for frontline firefighters and endorsed by the National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG) in 2002.
SAFENET provides another way for frontline firefighters to be heard - to get unsafe situations resolved on the fireline. SAFENET is also a means of capturing important safety-related data for a common data base at the National Interagency Fire Center to help determine long-term trends and problem areas.
SAFENET is a response to numerous requests from field fire managers and firefighters. These requests culminated in the TriData Wildland Firefighter Safety Awareness Study, and became a recommendation of Phase III of that Study.
Anybody who was involved in or witnesses unsafe situations in wildland fire.
SAFENET may be filled out anytime you want to document an unsafe situation.
Yes. Although SAFENET is intended for wildland fire operations, it has been extended to include such activities as training, and all-hazard (floods, hurricanes, etc).
Any safety issue. SAFENET not only begins corrective action, it also documents the issue. SAFENET should also be used to document "near misses." We ask only that SAFENET submissions not be frivolous or be used maliciously to address personal "paybacks."
SAFENET should first be directed to your supervisor. The SAFENET may also be submitted to your agency safety officer, to the incident commander in charge of the affected operation, or even to the local agency administrator. You may also submit the SAFENET electronically directly to the National Interagency Fire Center.
Ultimately the form goes to the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, where the data is entered into an interagency database.
The supervisor's role is the key to corrective action. If you are unable to take corrective action, the supervisor should be able to do so.
SAFENET is not intended to replace existing avenues for immediate action, rather it is a system that promotes the dissemination of hazard information as well as the analysis of large scale safety trends primarily in the wildland fire environment. The whole idea with SAFENET is that corrective action can most effectively be taken at the ground level. The supervisor is key to making this happen.
No. You have the right to file a SAFENET anonymously, however, issues can often be resolved more quickly if they can be discussed with the originator.
No. If you want complete confidentiality when filing SAFENET, file it without using your name.
No. You will not be punished for using SAFENET. However, if you feel some reason to fear punishment, then file SAFENET anonymously. Equal consideration will be given to all SAFENET filings regardless if they are signed or not.
No, but you have a better chance of having your issues resolved if you use it.
We hope so. SAFENET is being promoted throughout all fire organizations, be they local, state, or federal.
The originator of the SAFENET should describe what actions he/she took to correct or mitigate the unsafe/unhealthful event.
No. Corrective action for safety-related problems should come from any source you can find. SAFENET is just being provided as another vehicle to voice your concerns.
People at the field level were consulted during all aspects of SAFENET development. Additionally, SAFENET was field tested for one year in the Pacific Northwest to gain insight into field level concerns before making it a national program.
The safety officer on any incident should have a SAFENET form. If for some reason one is not available, just document the incident and file a SAFENET when you do find a form, or when you next have access to a computer.
No. The Safety Management Information System (SMIS) Accident/Incident Report is the official Department of the Interior system for reporting incidents and accidents.
The U. S. Forest Service has the same basic reporting system called SHIPS - Safety and Health Integrated Personnel System.
Other agencies may also have primary accident/incident reporting systems. Always follow your agency policy for reporting incidents and accidents.
SAFENET is a system designed for sharing knowledge and mitigating hazards for all fireline personnel, regardless of agency.
Even though providing your name is optional, providing your agency/organization information allows for faster corrective action by the responsible party(ies), if it is known what agency or jurisdiction you belong to. It also assists higher levels of the organization to ensure that corrective action was taken.
"Jurisdiction/local unit" identifies who has land management authority where the event occurred. An example: "Bureau of Land Management/Elko Field Office," "California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, Lassen-Modoc Ranger Unit."
"All hazard" in this case is a generic term indicating all non-wildland fire activities which require an incident management response, such as flood, hurricane, search and rescue and so forth.
"Transfer of Command" refers to the formal process of transferring incident command authority and the new Incident Commander assumes incident responsibility (e.g., signing Delegation of Authority).
"Position title" refers to your position on the incident at the time of the event in question or concern. For instance, you may have been assigned as a Strike Team Leader, Crew at the time of concern (which may or may not have been your assignment at other times on that incident).
The Incident Command System defines levels of complexity and management of incidents, from the most complex (Type 1) to the least complex (Type 5). A variety of factors are used to define those levels. For wildland fire, those factors or criteria may be found in the Fireline Handbook and other agency manuals.
Human factors are the interactions of the individual with the work environment that often contribute to, or cause incidents/mishaps. The interactions generally fall into two categories: behavior and mechanical/physical. Behavior includes such things as decisions/decision making, communications and interaction with others.
Mechanical/physical include such things as compatibility of tools, equipment, procedures, design of things, arrangement of instruments or controls.
Each agency will determine who completes the corrective actions for a particular SAFENET. The intent is to eliminate the unsafe situation at the administrative level closest to the place and time of the incident. As the SAFENET works its way through the system, ultimately to the national level, there may be several "agency corrective actions" that are appropriate.
Operationally, the goal is to remove the risk from the workplace. Pragmatically, the goal is to fix any contributing or causal factors, training, procedure or standard so as to eliminate the risk.
In terms of intent, there are no differences. SAFECOMS deal with aviation incidents/mishaps and SAFENETS deal with ground operations incidents/mishaps. SAFECOMS go to aviation program managers and SAFENETS go to operations program managers for either reporting purposes or resolution.
The national fire management safety program managers at NIFC will receive all SAFENETS. Each will be reviewed to see what kinds of safety issues are being reported and how the issues are being resolved, and the timeliness of resolution and at what levels of the organization. SAFENETS will be used to identify national trends, and to alert all fire program personnel of situations that warrant consideration or need. SAFENETS also will be used to identify new safety issues that may not be obvious to local personnel but would show up in the aggregated information.
Whenever a SAFENET is submitted to the national fire management safety program managers at NIFC, it automatically will be forwarded to the appropriate agency safety manager for mitigation followup and comment. Two working days after the SAFENET is submitted, it will be posted to the SAFENET website at http://safenet.nifc.gov/.
An electronic version of SAFENET is available on the internet. The site address is http://safenet.nifc.gov/. Some firefighters may not have internet access, so it is important to make sure some form of SAFENET is completed and filed as soon as possible, and that it is given to the person who can take action to correct the safety issue.
Hard copy forms are no longer available. SAFENET has transitioned to a web-only format.
Yes, SAFENET training has been included in annual refresher training as well as other fire training courses in the fire career progression.
The SAFENET will be delivered to the national data base located at NIFC and then forwarded on to the person responsible for fire safety on the unit and to the regional/state fire safety officer two working days before being posted to the SAFENET website.