Safety Culture Within the Anne Arundel County Fire Department

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By Allen S. Williams


The research problem was the department had never analyzed its safety culture, a component believed to have a significant impact on firefighter safety. The purpose was to reduce the risk of injuries and death to firefighters. Research questions included:

  1. Why study safety culture?
  2. What components should be analyzed?
  3. Given those components, what is the safety culture?
  4. What should be done to enhance it and maintain it for the future?

Descriptive research methods included surveys to all fire department members. Results indicated a 64% positive response to all survey statements. Recommended improvements included: a clear message regarding safety, improvements in communication techniques, instituting the right and responsibility of everyone to report safety problems, enhanced leadership skills, better internal marketing related to safety, and enhanced training.