Aerial Operations And Your Thermal Imager

Your thermal imager can be used for a variety of call types. I think, at this point, everyone knows that a thermal imager can be used for interior fire operations and direct fire-suppression activities. This month, we will talk about a non-traditional...


Your thermal imager can be used for a variety of call types. I think, at this point, everyone knows that a thermal imager can be used for interior fire operations and direct fire-suppression activities. This month, we will talk about a non-traditional, exterior application that often gets...


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Are you flowing water into the fourth-floor window? Use the thermal imager to direct the placement as well as to select stream type and flow rate necessary to make it to the red stuff. The same concept applies to aerial deluge of a self-ventilated building. You can use the thermal imager to place the stream with pinpoint accuracy and get the water exactly where it needs to go. No more guessing involved. Operations will be quicker and more efficient while using less water.

In conclusion, although many departments relegate their thermal imager to the job of interior fire suppression, the tool is valuable in a variety of situations. In fact, many of the applications are limited only by your thinking. As your thinking expands, so do the uses for your thermal imager. As with any new skill or application, I encourage you to practice and train first. The fire scene is no place to try something for the first time. That being said, it is only through training and experimentation that the full value and applicability of your thermal imager will be realized.

BRAD HARVEY is the Thermal Imaging Product Manager at Bullard. He is a veteran of public safety as a firefighter, police officer and paramedic and is certified through the Law Enforcement Thermographers' Association (LETA) as a thermal imaging instructor. Harvey has worked as a high-angle rescue instructor and is a certified rescue technician and fire instructor. If you have questions about thermal imaging, you may e-mail him at brad_harvey@bullard.com.