Trics of the Trade: Hoselines Trapped Under the Door

The priority is getting water back into the hoseline, but crews may encounter difficulty in removing the door. Beep! Attention Engine 42, Engine 92, Engine 46, Ladder 44, Ladder 27 and the 56 Battalion, respond to a phone alarm, 1245 Weeks Ave, between...

Make Sure The Engine Has Water Supply
Once a charged line gets stuck under a door, you can not just open it normally (see Photos 1 and 2). Even our conventional forcible entry can take some time and those firefighters on the other side of the door don't always have a lot of time.

Take the hydraulic forcible entry tool and place it on the floor adjacent to the hose line (see Photo 3). By expanding (raising) the bottom of the door you will get water to the engine and we can give them a fighting chance. As the tool expands, the water will start to flow back in to the line (see Photos 4 and Photo 5.) At this point listen for the sound of water bouncing off the walls fighting the fire and contact the engine officer to ascertain that they do indeed have enough water to continue the fight.

Once the water is flowing in the line again place a Halligan tool under the door to maintain your purchase (see Photo 7).

Forcing The Door
Once you have the purchase and water flowing, try to force entry on the lock side. The door may have become wedged in to the point that you will have to work both sides of the door, working your way down until you remove the door completely from the opening (see Photo 8.) You may also need two or even three Halligan tools to complete this evolution.

The same would apply to using a Halligan. You will have to continue to force the bottom of the door to get the water to the engine and then work the sides of the door (see Photo 9.

This is by no means the only way to do this and it's a basic skill. The trick here is to know what to do when the situation presents itself so you are not using trial and error when there are brothers or sisters in need.

Practice this a few times and put it in your tool box. This is just one more...Tric of the Trade.

TONY TRICARICO, a Contributing Editor, retired as a captain with the FDNY assigned to the Special Operations Command at Squad 252. A 32-year veteran of the fire service and a past chief of Mount Sinai, NY, Fire Department, he is a nationally certified instructor and teaches at the FDNY Technical Rescue School, Suffolk County Fire Academy and around the country.  You can reach Tony by e-mail at