The purpose of this study was to evaluate Emergency Medicine resident physicians' compliance with our institution's rapid sequence intubation (RSI) protocol by the use of videotape analysis. We conducted a prospective, observational study of Emergency Medicine resident physicians (EM 1,2,3) as they were videotaped performing RSI on medical and trauma patients. The videotapes were reviewed by the study investigators to assess the rates of deviation from our standard RSI protocol. Forty-four RSIs performed by 33 residents were studied. The most common deviations from our standard RSI protocol concerned proper use of the Sellick maneuver (45%) and use of the end-tidal CO(2) detector (34%). Videotape analysis provides an objective measure of Emergency Medicine resident performance of RSI.