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Thread: VES and PPV

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    MembersZone Subscriber Golzy12's Avatar
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    Question Can Vent Enter Search be used with Positive Pressure Ventilation?

    This may be a stupid question I'm not sure, my department doesn't normally use VES so I'm not very familiar with it

    Is it possible to VES while using PPV? In the Fire officers handbook it says they can be used together but it requires a lot of coordination. What would you have to do differently to make it work, for example, would you leave to door closed after you searched the bedroom in order to keep the hallway pressurized?

    In my mind the two just don't work well together, it seems like the fan would push everything towards the opening that you are trying to enter through. Does any one use these tactics together?
    Last edited by Golzy12; 05-11-2008 at 06:03 PM.


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    I can't speak for other agencies, but when we VES, we close the door and leave it closed.

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    The concept with VES is to vent the space you are going to enter, not to vent the fire. Closing the door as soon as possible to keep the compartment you are searching seperated from the fire is an important part of the tactic. You dont want to draw the fire to where you are operating. If using PPV you have to provide an outlet for the vent air introduced by the fan. If the fire self vented, then that is the outlet. Then you can possibly VES an univolved area. In this case you must close off the vent hole that you enter from (the window) to search (by closeing the door to the room) or you could be for a nasty surprise. I dont think I would try the two together unless you are feeling extremely lucky.

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    PPV and VES together? NO!

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    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
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    Personal opinion...way too much to coordinate between PPV and VES at the same time. Can it be done? Yes. Is it worth it? Most likely not.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    Forum Member Dave1983's Avatar
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    We use PPV on pretty much every fire, but I have done VES and understand the concept. I would say do one or the other but not both.
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    I wouldnt use the two together.

    By opening the door on your way out of the room you allow the smoke to take the opening you just created. granted, if theres fire outside or close you may not want to open it back up, but usually it is re opened on the way out.

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    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
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    opening the door on your way out of the room
    You certainly practice VES much different than we do. We go in the window, shut the door (if it's not already) and then back out the window. Move to the next window, repeat.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Golzy12 View Post

    Is it possible to VES while using PPV? In the Fire officers handbook it says they can be used together but it requires a lot of coordination.
    Golzy12: Which Fire Officer's handbook are you referring to? As far as I'm concerned there really only is one and I can't find where these two tactics are addressed together.

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    MembersZone Subscriber Golzy12's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RFDACM02 View Post
    Golzy12: Which Fire Officer's handbook are you referring to? As far as I'm concerned there really only is one and I can't find where these two tactics are addressed together.
    This one, John Normans, http://www.amazon.com/Fire-Officers-.../dp/159370061X. It is addressed briefly in the PPV section of the book.

    Also, I learned to open the door on the way out of the room too, Their must be two different trains of thought going here.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Golzy12 View Post
    This one, John Normans, http://www.amazon.com/Fire-Officers-.../dp/159370061X. It is addressed briefly in the PPV section of the book.

    Also, I learned to open the door on the way out of the room too, Their must be two different trains of thought going here.
    That's the one book I spoke of, but I couldn't see where he put VES and PPV together?

    On the door open or closed issue, there was quite a lengthy thread last year sometime on this. One school of thought is to utilize the now cleared room and window to alleviate smoke and heat by re-opening the door, the other is to close the door, search back to the window and exit leaving the room closed to minimize further smoke and heat or fire damage and to maintain control of ventilation. I'd prefer the second as a general rule as leaving the door open requires you to go back to the door vs. search from the door back and out.

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    MembersZone Subscriber Golzy12's Avatar
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    Thats a great book by the way.

    Alright I found it, It's on page 202 it says: "PPV mustn't be used if firefighters are entering the building from any other points then where the fan is operating. This requires great coordination if VES is to be employed"

    Thats the exact sentence that got me hung up on the whole PPV VES issue.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Golzy12 View Post
    Thats a great book by the way.

    Alright I found it, It's on page 202 it says: "PPV mustn't be used if firefighters are entering the building from any other points then where the fan is operating. This requires great coordination if VES is to be employed"

    Thats the exact sentence that got me hung up on the whole PPV VES issue.
    Must be a different edition, I'm in the 2nd Ed. and didn't look in the first. I think the first sentence says it all, given that VES would screw up the controlled openings required to use PPV. In my mind I'd think he's alluding to having to kill the fan until the VES FF verifies the door is closed to the room, each time an entry is made. That would require ridiculous coordination.

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    MembersZone Subscriber Golzy12's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RFDACM02 View Post
    Must be a different edition, I'm in the 2nd Ed. and didn't look in the first. I think the first sentence says it all, given that VES would screw up the controlled openings required to use PPV. In my mind I'd think he's alluding to having to kill the fan until the VES FF verifies the door is closed to the room, each time an entry is made. That would require ridiculous coordination.
    It's in the 3rd Ed. Thanks for the info, I think my question has been answered. They don't work well together and it would be a pain to try to use them together.

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    Default Ppa & Ves

    If you are using PPA during the initial attack do not use VES. If you are using VES we recommend that you have the fire controlled before starting blowers. The close coordination required to use PPA and VES at the same time is too risky. Choose which ever tactic you believe to be most beneficial but don't use them together. More in depth information on positivepressureattack.com

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    i would never do both at the same time. we also hardly ever ppv.

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    This is a question for those of you that employ PPV during your initial attack....

    Who is assigned to do this task? And what other tasks are being performed simultaneously?

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    MembersZone Subscriber Golzy12's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jakesdad View Post
    This is a question for those of you that employ PPV during your initial attack....

    Who is assigned to do this task? And what other tasks are being performed simultaneously?
    On my dept the truck co's are the only ones that carry PPV fans so they are typically in charge of it. We have three firefighters on a truck co so the tailboarder and the captain will start a primary search and the driver will set ppv up. During this time the first engine co will be making their initial attack.

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    Staffing on an engine - 1 Officer, 1 Driver, 2 FF's.

    First in engine arrives, officer assumes command, gives radio report and does 360 size-up. While doing the 360 size-up he is looking for the fire room. One FF stretches the line while the other FF grabs the fan. When the line is on the ground and charged, the fan is started and pointed AWAY FROM THE DOOR. Officer vents the window by breaking it and goes back to the door to make entry with the nozzle firefighter. When making entry turn the fan into the door, and give it 15-20 seconds to clear out before entering. The outside FF stays at the door to satisfy two-in/two-out with the driver as the 2nd person.

    Truck company arrives with 3 or 4 FF's and assumes command. They perform inside truck work (search, overhaul, etc.)

    2nd truck performs outside truck work (laddering, utilities, etc.)

    For those who are anti-positive pressure attack (PPA) just try and get into a class on it and see how it works. You may never use it but at least educate yourself on it. And there are many times where vertical ventilation is the way to go. Watching a couple videos on YouTube of and saying PPA/PPV is stupid is not educating yourself. Talk to the FF's in Salt Lake City or Austin about the results on real fires and the studies. (2 very large departments who use PPA). Remember these are relatively young cities with predominant lightweight construction so PPA works well.

    There are many departments that would never use Positive Pressure Attack and others who will never get on a roof. You have to have good training to decide when each is right.

    As for VES and PPA at the same time, I would say that's not a good idea.

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    In my time I've operated with a department that uses PPV and one that practices VES. Never..let me repeat that...NEVER..together. While I respect the opinion that PPV works great, I am of the old school here. I've done both like I said, (and maybe it's just close-mindedness on my part), but at the fires I've been at the old school techniques have served us very, very well...honestly better than any new fangled, hot off the press operations. But I'm a dinosaur I guess.

    As for VES..I was taught..and practice ..in a window..close the door..search and check for extension, then out. VES is NOT an operation I (or my department) would entrust to a rookie or inexperienced member. The person going in that room better damn well know what he/she is doing, and that only comes with experience.
    For those that use PPV ..that's great and I'm sure it serves you well, but I'll stick with the old ways thank you. Some things are better left unchanged.
    And although this doesn't fit the topic....smooth bore for interior operations...keep the fog nozzles to water the lawn.

    Take care
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    Stay Safe

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