Thursday, 10 October 2019 20:22

Rapid Intervention Crew


To provide Emergency Services Organizations with recommended Rapid Intervention Crew (RIC) operations protocols where an Immediately Dangerous to Life and Health (IDLH) environment would be present or any such incident where the Incident Commander deemed appropriate.



The application of this guideline shall apply to all Emergency Services Organizations actively engaged in fire suppression activities or anytime the safety of firefighters operating at an incident would be enhanced.



There should be an established list of qualified RIC Teams to assist Emergency Services Organizations in setting up their response boxes/grids.  The dispatchers at the Communications Center should be allotted the authority to automatically move up a RIC or RIC Task Force when a RIC is committed for firefighting duties by Incident Commander (IC).



Initial Dispatch Response

1.       It is recommended that a single RIC be dispatched in conjunction with the first alarm structure response or as pre-determined by the local response agency.

2.       It is recommended that Commercial or High Hazard Boxes/Grids have two or more RIC Teams on the first alarm structure dispatch or as pre-determined by the local response agency.


Confirmed Fires or IDLH Incident Responses

1.       It is recommended the following Rapid Intervention resources (a RIC Task Force)  be dispatched to confirmed fires or entrance into a IDLH atmosphere

·         A RIC Team meeting the standards in the Guideline.

·         A RIC Group Supervisor

·         Additional BLS Unit(s)


RIC Company Staffing

1.       A Minimum of 4 (four) interior structural firefighters, 1 (one) of which should be the Team Leader with an IMS Level 1 certification.

2.       Members of the RIC should be trained in Rapid Intervention skills and techniques.


Response Channel

1.       Companies responding should operate on the radio frequency for that response area or designated by the Communication Center.

2.       The RIC should monitor all fireground frequencies being utilized.

3.       If the crew splits for proactive RIC operations each team should monitor the frequencies in use.

4.       All RIC members should be equipped with portable radios with the appropriate channels programmed.

5.       Upon a report of a downed, trapped or lost firefighter or collapse with interior operations the Communications Center shall dispatch an emergency tone to have all unnecessary communications cease unless urgent.

6.       All companies not involved in the firefighter rescue should be switched to a secondary frequency at the IC discretion; RIC Operations shall continue on the channel that the Mayday was called.

7.       The IC or his/her designee should transmit the same information over the fire ground operations channel unless this is covered by the Communications Center.


Team Staging and Identification

1.       Radio and fire ground identification to follow NIMS terminology for single resources.  Example: RIC 241, RIC 161 or RIC 113

2.       The IC may make adjustments in the RIC designation based on evolving incidents, size and complexity (i.e. Multiple RIC’s and/or various staging locations).

3.       Individual RIC team members should be identified by their seating position or job assignment when necessary while away from or if separated from their crew.  The Leader of the RIC team should answer for the entire team when the team is called

4.       Tool staging for RIC should be in close proximity to the team location.

5.       A stokes basket or ground ladder should be used to transport equipment to reduce strain on RIC members.  This allows the movement of the RIC as a unit.

6.       Only RIC members shall be authorized to utilize RIC tools.


Tools and Equipment

1.       Upon arrival, the RIC should assemble the minimum following equipment for all assignments.

·         Full Turnout Gear, SCBA, & Pass Device

·         Flashlight (each member)

·         Portable Radio (each member, if available)

·         Thermal Imaging Camera / spare battery

·         RIC Emergency Air Supply for Downed Firefighter

·         100ft Life Safety Rope

·         Steel 6ft Hook

·         Sets of Irons (Flat Axe/Halligan)

·         Sledge Hammer/Maul

·         Rotary Saw (Metal & Wood Capable)

·         Chain Saw

·         Search Rope (minimum 100’)

·         Bolt Cutters

·         Stokes Basket or Ground Ladder for Tool Transport


Commercial/Multi-Story Occupancies add the following equipment:

·         Search Rope (Minimum 200’ w/ Tag Lines)

·         Hydra Ram/Rabbit Tool


Optional Tool Compliment

·         Emergency Medical Equipment w/ AED, unless supplied by designated RIC BLS unit(s).

·         Firefighter Removal Device (Half SKED, RIT Drag Device, etc)

·         Basic Rope Rescue Equipment (3:1 Mechanical Advantage)

·         Reciprocating Saw (Battery Powered Preferred)

·         Additional SCBA Cylinders


Rapid Intervention Crew Responsibilities

1.       Upon arrival, the Leader and (1) firefighter should report to IC to initiate 2-In, 2-Out coverage while the remainder of the crew gathers equipment.

2.       The Leader should obtain a briefing of the incident from the IC, verify RIC operations channel and confirm staging area for the RIC.

3.       RIC should stage close to fire building.  In the event the situation is a high-rise building (6 stories or higher), RIC should stage one floor below the fire floor, the 2nd RIC should be staged in the Lobby.

4.       When possible all RIC members should conduct a 360 size-up (walk-around the building, incident, etc.) and report any findings (construction features, forcible entry problems, special hazards, fire location, etc.) to the RIC Leader who should report to the IC.

5.       Members of the RIC shall monitor their radios for the duration of the incident.

6.       The RIC Leader and/or RIC Group Supervisor should determine what needs to be done for a RIC operation should a Mayday be transmitted (additional ground ladders, removal of barriers that could impede firefighter egress, etc.). Prepare the incident scene for RIC activation; this should be coordinate with the IC and the Operations Chief prior to implementation.

7.       Formulate a secondary plan of action (i.e., alternate means and location of ingress and egress).

8.       RIC should determine which companies are on the scene and where they are operating.

9.       The RIC Group Supervisor will be directly responsible for the accountability of the RIC Team(s) at all times.

10.    The RIC Group Supervisor will oversee and coordinate all RIC operations and deployments, reporting directly to the IC.

11.    The RIC Group Supervisor should monitor conditions and request the IC to dispatch additional RIC Team for support and incident coverage.

12.    The RIC Group Supervisor should monitor the standby times of the RIC Team.  Relief crews may be needed due to weather conditions / duration.

13.    The RIC Group Supervisor should pre-determine the Recon, Rescue and Removal RIC Teams or positions of a team.


RIC Termination

1.   IDLH atmosphere has been eliminated or none exists due to suppression / control actions

2.   Present and potential hazards no longer exist.

3.   The IC has placed the incident under control.

4.   When the IC determines that emergency personnel operating at the incident are no longer exposed to harmful risl.


Recommended Rapid Intervention Crew Training

Rapid Intervention Awareness:

1.   The RIC Awareness class will be the introductory course.

2.   This course will be the prerequisite for the RIC Operations Course.

3.   It is recommended that the student not participate in a Rapid Intervention Crew until having completed the RIC Operations.

4.   It is recommended that the Awareness course consist of a minimum of a three (3) hour lecture covering a basic overview introduction into Rapid Intervention.


Rapid Intervention Crew Operations:

1.       The following are the pre-requisites for Firefighters who wish to attend Operational level training:

·         Successfully attend and complete Rapid Intervention Awareness.

·         Be a State of New Jersey, Division of Fire Safety Certified Firefighter Level 1.

2.       The RIC Operations training should consist of a minimum of Twenty-four (24) total hours of training.

Four (4) hours of lecture
Twenty (20) hours of skills-based training.
3.       It is recommended that personnel operating as a RIC be trained to this level.




Appendix 1 – RIC Leader Checklist

Appendix 2 – Tools and Equipment







□ IC Briefing     □ Crew location(s)     □ Team Location     □ Assemble Equipment       

□ Accountability System □ Radio channel   □ Designate Company Assignments



□ RIC Equipment List


Initial Size-Up

Building Dimensions ____ x ____                  Occupancy: ______________________

Type: □ Wood Frame     □ Heavy Timber     □ Ordinary     □ Noncombustible    

□ Fire resistive            Roof Type: _______________           □ Utilities controlled



□ Windows     □ Doors     □ Scuttles/Hatches     □ Basement Access     □ Ladders



□ Window Bars     □ Storm Doors   □ Fences   □ Animals  □ Window AC Units



□ Offensive     □ Defensive   □ Attack line(s)     □ Back-up line(s) 

 □ Master Streams   □ Number of Interior Crews   □ Division(s)       □ Time Factor



Size-up:   □ 10 minutes   □ 15 minutes □ 20 minutes             □ 25 minutes   □ 30 minutes

Utilities:   □ Secured   □ Unsecured   □ Natural gas  □ Propane    □ Oil    

                        □ Electric

Collapse Potential:  □ High     □ Moderate     □ Low




□ Open Egress Points

□ Additional Ladders Placed to all sides

□ Open entire window/door area

□ Secure back-up/protection line

□ Monitor number and locations of interior crews

□ Evaluate need for additional RIC’s

□ EMS Location

□ Check with Safety/Accountability Officer

□ Review Pre-Plans

□ Provide additional scene lighting





Burlington and Camden County Regional Guidelines

Rapid Intervention Crew




Upon arrival the Rapid Intervention Crew should assemble the following equipment.  The equipment compliment listed below will serve as the minimum requirement for a Rapid Intervention Company.


___ Full Turnout Gear, SCBA, & Pass Device


___ Flashlight (Each Member)


___ Portable Radio (Each Member, If Available)


___ Thermal Imaging Camera


___ RIC Emergency Air Supply for Downed Firefighter


___ Search Rope - (Minimum of 100’)


___ 100ft Life Safety Rope


___ Steel 6ft Hook


___ Sets of Irons (Flat Axe/Halligan)


___ Sledge Hammer/Maul


___ Rotary Saw (Metal & Wood Capable)


___ Chain Saw


___ Bolt Cutters


___ Stokes Basket or Ground Ladder for Tool Transport



Commercial/Multi-Story Occupancies add the following equipment:


     ___ Search Rope (Minimum 200’ w/ Tag Lines)


___ Hydra Ram/Rabbit Tool

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