Wildland Interface Issues

Looking back at the amount of training that a new firefighter received, it is evident that most of the material is aimed at structural firefighting with a very Topic: Wildland Interface Issues Time Required: 2 Hours Materials...


• Avoid excessive idling with lights, radios, etc., on unless you can maintain adequate RPM's with a hand throttle because excessive idling can deplete the battery, killing the engine and radio and placing you and your crew in jeopardy

• When moving around in smokey conditions, keep your headlights and red lights on

• Keep at least one length of charged 1-1/2-in or larger line looped on top of the engine for protection of your engine and your crew

• Save the last 100 gallons of water in your booster tank for the protection of your engine and your crew and never pass up an available water source when your tank is less than full

• Never leave your equipment unattended, unless you are parked in a safe area such as the burn, cleared areas, or paved, gravel openings, etc.

• If trapped by fire

• Take refuge in the structure because it does not burn instantly and provides protection from the fire outside or if your leave your engine, park it in as safe a place as possible, perhaps in the garage

• Take refuge in your engine and, if it is in a good location, stay there, or, if not, keep moving and seek a place where the fire is less intense but be aware that visibility will be poor

• Keep the pump running and use the looped line to deploy a fog pattern over the cab

• If available, take SCBA into the cab and use them as necessary to protect yourself from smoke.

• Use fire shelters or salvage covers to reflect radiant heat from the windows

• Request air drops

• Stay inside the cab until your are sure it is safe to go outside. If the motor has died, there is not enough oxygen outside to keep you running either. If the engine is catching on fire, so will you if you go outside. The cab will normally burn last, and may buy you time until things outside start to cool down

• Ensure everyone has a fire shelter and is properly trained to use it (This is your last resort)

• Maintain control of your people, keep calm, display a positive attitude and maintain communications, and don't make a bad situation worse by coming unglued

• Stay out of possible lethal areas such as saddles, chimneys, chutes, extraordinary fuel buildups, areas where you would not position your personnel or public, or the structural collapse zone

• Be aware of hazardous materials in the home or on the farm, smoke color indicators of hazardous materials, and vehicle fires which include approximately 300 lbs. of plastic in each vehicle

Interface Safety Considerations

• Structural situations that shout "Watch Out"

• Wooden construction, shake roof

• Poor access, narrow one-way roads

• Inadequate water supply

• Natural fuels 30 feet or closer to structures

• Extreme fire behavior

• Strong winds, 25 mph plus

• Evacuation of public (panic)

• Structures located in chimneys, box or narrow canyons, on slopes of 30% or more and in continuous, flashy fuel types

• Bridge load limits

• Do's and Don'ts in protecting structures in the interface

• Do wear full protective clothing and equipment

• Do keep at least 100 gallons of water reserve in your engine booster tank

• Do have a protective line for your crew and engine

• Do back your engine in or you may need to leave quickly to protect you and your crew

• Do use 1-1/2-inch or larger lines when possible

• Do post lookout as necessary

• Don't park in saddles or in chimneys

• Don't enter a burning structure unless you have been properly trained and equipped for that sort of activity

• Don'ts when working around power lines

• Downed conductor on vehicle; don't leave vehicle until power company arrives; if the vehicle is on fire or fire is near, jump clear; don't hang on; keep feet together and bunny hop away

• Don't operate heavy equipment under power lines

• Don't use rights-of-way as a jump or cargo drop spot

• Don't drive with long antennas under power lines

• Don't fuel vehicles under power lines

• Don't stand near power lines during retardant drops

• Don't park under power lines

• Don't apply straight stream to power line

Wildland Interface Issues

• Structural and Wildland Fire Differences

• Wildland Obstacles

• Safety Considerations