Dave McGrail

Habit based fireground operations

it’s all about the process

Course Description:

The training program will focus on the Mindset associated with Habit Based Strategy, Tactics, and Task Level Operations for structural firefighting.  

Topics will include:

• Engine Company Operations, with a focus on Proper Weapon Selection, and Overwhelming the Fire with Disproportionate Force, regardless of staffing levels.

• Truck Company Fireground Operations, with a focus on Fire Ground Reconnaissance, Aggressive Search, and Door Control.  

• RIT Operations, with a focus on Pro-Active RIT RECON and Secondary Egress.

• Fireground Command and Control, with a focus on Pro-Active decision making to anticipate and stay ahead of Fireground Problems.

It’s all about the process, and daily habits — That’s what will increase the probability of a successful operation, and most importantly, civilian and firefighter survival


Dave McGrail is a 40-year fire service veteran, and Assistant Chief with the Denver Fire Department assigned to the Operations Division, District #3.  Dave has been assigned to some of the busiest fire companies and fire districts within the Denver Fire Department.  Over the past 40-years, from Nozzleman to Incident Commander, Dave has responded to and operated at thousands of fires and emergency incidents, including high-rise fires, plane crashes, technical rescues, and all of the other daily incidents that occur in a big city. Dave has received fifteen commendations for his actions at various incidents over the past 40-years.  Dave has, and continues to provide educational programs and hands-on training to firefighters all across the American and Canadian Fire Service, and Internationally.  Dave has several College Degrees, including Fire Science Technology, Human Resource Management, Fire Service, and Public Administration.  Dave is a second-generation Denver firefighter and lives with his family in the Washington Park neighborhood of Denver.