1. #1
    Forum Member
    FIREMECH1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    HUSKER LAND
    Posts
    2,425

    Default Park brake test...

    I'm curious to know what you guys do for your "daily" park brake test.
    Do you have an SOP/SOG that defines how you do it???
    Put in gear and if it holds, it's good??? Or do you have a set rpm increase above idle that you use?? Or, a set rpm that you go up to, to see if it holds???

    Here's my problem. The FD engineer took 3 rigs OOS because the park brake wouldn't hold when throttled up to 1,200 rpm's in gear. I was called out to find and correct the problem.

    The FD SOP/SOG is to put it in gear, note the idle rpm, and gradually increase the throttle 200-300 rpm's over idle. If it stays, your good. If it moves, call the shop.

    After a careful inspection and test of the park brakes, all 3 were returned into service without any need of adjustment. And FYI, I am extremely cautious when it comes to brakes on these rigs.

    FM1
    I'm the one Fire and Rescue calls, when they need to be Rescued.

    Quote Originally Posted by EastKyFF
    "Firemens gets antsies. Theys wants to goes to fires. Sometimeses they haves to waits."

  2. #2
    Forum Member
    Johngagemn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Woodbury, MN
    Posts
    91

    Default

    I always just checked them in gear at idle, never tried to throttle up. Shoot, if you throttle up enough in gear you can overcome the brakes, climb a wheel chock, and go pick up a hamburger at McDonald's, and I've witnessed probies trying to do all three!
    Just a guy...

    Lieutenant - Woodbury, MN FD (Retired)
    Road Captain - Red Knights MC, MN4

    Disclaimer: The facts and opinions expressed above are mine, and mine alone, and are not intended to represent the views of any company I have ever worked for, past or present.

  3. #3
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts
    62

    Default Sop

    Our department policy is to park the truck on a slight incline facing down the incline apply the park break and throttle up 200 or 300 rpm above idle. That “above idle” is important because at one point it was written to take the truck up to a set rpm but we were finding a lot of trucks failing because the idled low and any more than that 200 or 300 rpm increase was causing the truck to move. In saying that typically if the truck moves they just put a little bit of a turn on the breaks even thought they might still be in adjustment just to stop the rig from moving.

  4. #4
    Forum Member
    FIREMECH1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    HUSKER LAND
    Posts
    2,425

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MColley
    Our department policy is to park the truck on a slight incline facing down the incline apply the park break and throttle up 200 or 300 rpm above idle.
    Our FD's SOP/SOG for going 200-300 rpm's over idle on level ground, is to substitute the parking on an incline. Either facing downward or upward.

    I'm astonished, yet surprised at the none responses from others.

    NOTED.

    FM1
    I'm the one Fire and Rescue calls, when they need to be Rescued.

    Quote Originally Posted by EastKyFF
    "Firemens gets antsies. Theys wants to goes to fires. Sometimeses they haves to waits."

  5. #5
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Greensboro, NC USA
    Posts
    1,311

    Default

    I don't think throttling up a certain number of RPM's to check is the right way to do it.

    One truck may have a 450 HP engine and 6.14:1 ring & pinion gears. A truck like that would climb trees as long as it had traction. While another truck may have a 325 HP engine and 4.88's.

    I can tell you what the NFPA manufacturer's test is, which you likely already know. The parking brake is supposed to bring the fully laden vehicle to a complete stop from a speed of 5 mph within 20’.
    The American people will never knowingly adopt Socialism. But under the name of 'liberalism' they will adopt every fragment of the Socialist program, until one day America will be a Socialist nation, without knowing how it happened. --Norman Mattoon Thomas, 6 time presidential candidate for the Socialist Party of America

  6. #6
    Let's talk fire trucks!
    BoxAlarm187's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    3,314

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FIREMECH1 View Post
    I'm astonished, yet surprised at the none responses from others.

    NOTED.
    We don't do a dedicated brake test at our department. In fact, I feel somewhat ashamed that in my many years of doing this for a lot of different departments, that I've never heard of anyone doing a brake test.
    Career Fire Captain
    Volunteer Chief Officer


    Never taking for granted that I'm privileged enough to have the greatest job in the world!

  7. #7
    Forum Member
    FIREMECH1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    HUSKER LAND
    Posts
    2,425

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BoxAlarm187
    We don't do a dedicated brake test at our department. In fact, I feel somewhat ashamed that in my many years of doing this for a lot of different departments, that I've never heard of anyone doing a brake test.
    Seems like you're not the only one that doesn't do it, or has never heard of it. I thought it was something every department did. (???)
    Maybe it's something our FD decided to do, to make sure the spring brakes will hold on the hills. Not sure why it's in their SOP/SOG, but it is.

    FM1
    I'm the one Fire and Rescue calls, when they need to be Rescued.

    Quote Originally Posted by EastKyFF
    "Firemens gets antsies. Theys wants to goes to fires. Sometimeses they haves to waits."

  8. #8
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    SW Missouri
    Posts
    1,154

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FIREMECH1 View Post
    Seems like you're not the only one that doesn't do it, or has never heard of it. I thought it was something every department did. (???)
    Maybe it's something our FD decided to do, to make sure the spring brakes will hold on the hills. Not sure why it's in their SOP/SOG, but it is.

    FM1
    I have heard of it, but we don't do it or have a policy for it. It is not a bad idea.

  9. #9
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Pa Wilds
    Posts
    586

    Default

    Some CDL parking brake (spring brake) tests reference rolling at low speed and setting the spring brake. This test specifies a minimum braking rate of 12% of gravity. Since "G" is 32 ft/sec*sec. This is 3.84 ft/ sec * sec. Rolling at 5 mph is 7.33 ft/ sec so stopping should be accomplished in 1.909 seconds. Assuming a uniform decileration rate, the rolling distance after the brake starts dragging will be (7.33 / 2) * 1.909 = 6.996 ft. But you must only start measuring after the brake starts to apply, not when you pop the yellow button. Another way to test would be to stop on a 12% grade, set the spring brake, and see if the truck stays still.

  10. #10
    Forum Member
    FIREMECH1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    HUSKER LAND
    Posts
    2,425

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by txgp17
    I don't think throttling up a certain number of RPM's to check is the right way to do it.

    One truck may have a 450 HP engine and 6.14:1 ring & pinion gears. A truck like that would climb trees as long as it had traction. While another truck may have a 325 HP engine and 4.88's.

    I can tell you what the NFPA manufacturer's test is, which you likely already know. The parking brake is supposed to bring the fully laden vehicle to a complete stop from a speed of 5 mph within 20’.
    Yep, I know what the NFPA standard is set to. But that 20' is too long in my opinion. If push comes to shove with those that think they know, I do a 5mph test. If it doesn't stop in 3 seconds from popping the valve, then we MAY have a problem.

    As for HP and rear gearing, that issue is really not an issue. I've got a rescue/hazmat 500HP with 5:37 gearing on a single axle, and does OUR park brake test just fine.

    FM1
    I'm the one Fire and Rescue calls, when they need to be Rescued.

    Quote Originally Posted by EastKyFF
    "Firemens gets antsies. Theys wants to goes to fires. Sometimeses they haves to waits."

  11. #11
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Greensboro, NC USA
    Posts
    1,311

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FIREMECH1 View Post
    As for HP and rear gearing, that issue is really not an issue. I've got a rescue/hazmat 500HP with 5:37 gearing on a single axle, and does OUR park brake test just fine.
    FM1
    Yes,
    A parking brake that can resist your test with the 500/5.37 combo is a good example of a good parking brake.

    However, a 350/4.88 combo would exert much less torque on the wheels. So a weaker parking brake on that truck MIGHT pass that test, but not hold adequately on a steep grade. Emphasis on MIGHT.
    The American people will never knowingly adopt Socialism. But under the name of 'liberalism' they will adopt every fragment of the Socialist program, until one day America will be a Socialist nation, without knowing how it happened. --Norman Mattoon Thomas, 6 time presidential candidate for the Socialist Party of America

  12. #12
    Forum Member
    EngineCO38's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Windham County, Vermont
    Posts
    195

    Default

    When I do my weekly pre-trip of the trucks (The pre-trip that is defined in the Vermont DOT CDL manual) I rev the engine to 1,000 RPM's, and if it holds it passes its inspection. If it moves, well I recommend it taken out of service.

    That's how I do it with all the big vehicles I drive, our rigs at the station, my 02' International box truck at Budweiser. And whichever school bus I happen to be driving on the weekends.
    Opinions expressed by myself here are just that, mine. And not that of ANY organization or service I am affiliated with.

  13. #13
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Location
    KENTUCKY
    Posts
    410

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BoxAlarm187 View Post
    We don't do a dedicated brake test at our department. In fact, I feel somewhat ashamed that in my many years of doing this for a lot of different departments, that I've never heard of anyone doing a brake test.
    Remember, disaster begats code. Those departments with a parking brake testing policy, procedure, guide, etc. are probably those who have had an apparatus roll away with the brake set. Just sayin'

  14. #14
    Back In Black
    ChiefKN's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    The Nice Part of New Jersey
    Posts
    6,981

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by LFD2203 View Post
    Remember, disaster begats code. Those departments with a parking brake testing policy, procedure, guide, etc. are probably those who have had an apparatus roll away with the brake set. Just sayin'
    My wife's car was crushed (it was parked) by a 3000 gal FD tender that rolled out of the auto body shop.

    Of course, the parking brake wasn't set. A critical step in the process.
    I am now a past chief and the views, opinions, and comments are mine and mine alone. I do not speak for any department or in any official capacity. Although, they would be smart to listen to me.

    "The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it's still on the list."

    "When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water."

  15. #15
    Forum Member
    FIREMECH1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    HUSKER LAND
    Posts
    2,425

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by LFD2203
    Remember, disaster begats code. Those departments with a parking brake testing policy, procedure, guide, etc. are probably those who have had an apparatus roll away with the brake set. Just sayin'
    Nope, not here. It is something called being "PRO-ACTIVE", than being RE-ACTIVE. Some should study the difference. 'Just sayin'

    FM1
    I'm the one Fire and Rescue calls, when they need to be Rescued.

    Quote Originally Posted by EastKyFF
    "Firemens gets antsies. Theys wants to goes to fires. Sometimeses they haves to waits."

  16. #16
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Rhodell, WV
    Posts
    18

    Default

    As a professional school bus operator and engineer for our fire department, the proper way defined in WV is having the park brake set (assuming you are using air brakes) put unit in drive, gently acelerate the engine to 1200 RPMs. If the vehicle moves any, then the brakes needs serviced. You should also remember to check for air leaks. You should build your air pressure to 100 lbs, and turn engine off, listen and watch gauge for 1 minute. Then hold service brake for 1 minute and listen and watch gauge. A drop in pressure more than 3 psi indicates a problem. Your compressor should build from 85 lbs to 100 lbs in 1 minute or less. If it doesnt, there is another problem. The brakes are in size to acomidate the respective vehicle they are on. Whether it is a 10 ton vehicle with a 220 hp engine or a 30 ton vehicle with a 410 hp engine, Its all the same.

  17. #17
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    11

    Default Check the BOOK!

    Per the "Fire Service Pump Operator: Principles and Practice" pg. 139 Parking Brake Test "Make sure that the fire apparatus is in a safe position and has plenty of room to perform this simple brake test. With the fire apparatus turned on, allow it to move forward at a speed less than 5 mi/h (8km/h). Apply the parking brake. If the fire apparatus does not stop, bring it to a halt using the service brakes and have the apparatus inspected by a qualified mechanic."

    If something does happen and it goes to court, you as the engineer and your department, have a legal leg to stand on. This test is in a text approved by NFPA and IAFC. By going out and "making up" your own tests potentially puts you and your department in a position of liability.

    If you and your department are going to create SOG/SOP's then refer back to the textbooks you used in school.

    "It sounded like a good idea..." and "I thought it was a good idea..." doesn't hold a whole lot of water in court.
    Jeffrey

    "Plan for the worst, hope for the best!"

  18. #18
    Forum Member
    FIREMECH1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    HUSKER LAND
    Posts
    2,425

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Nullygarhoe View Post
    Per the "Fire Service Pump Operator: Principles and Practice" pg. 139 Parking Brake Test "Make sure that the fire apparatus is in a safe position and has plenty of room to perform this simple brake test. With the fire apparatus turned on, allow it to move forward at a speed less than 5 mi/h (8km/h). Apply the parking brake. If the fire apparatus does not stop, bring it to a halt using the service brakes and have the apparatus inspected by a qualified mechanic."
    How many feet, or how many seconds do I let it roll before it stops????

    Simple question.

    FM1
    I'm the one Fire and Rescue calls, when they need to be Rescued.

    Quote Originally Posted by EastKyFF
    "Firemens gets antsies. Theys wants to goes to fires. Sometimeses they haves to waits."

  19. #19
    MembersZone Subscriber
    LVFD301's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    3,956

    Default

    When it takes out the doors or the wall - you let it roll too far.

  20. #20
    Forum Member
    CaptOldTimer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 1999
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    7,242

    Default

    We have done this before but at a speed of 25 mph, near the training school and also at the shops, and apply the park, aka maxi, brake. In 100% of these tests the rig stopped.

    Not sure the distance it took.

    Maybe in quarters the members may test it daily but not an usual case. No in writing to do so. Just at a drivers whim.
    Stay Safe and Well Out There....

    Always remembering 9-11-2001 and 343+ Brothers

  21. #21
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    11

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FIREMECH1 View Post
    How many feet, or how many seconds do I let it roll before it stops????

    Simple question.

    FM1
    Your right, it is a simple question. Of course a minimum or maximum distance is not listed in the book.

    The only thing I can suggest at this point is either dig deep into NFPA and see if there is a minimum or maximum distance listed or go with what you as the engineer would feel safe with.

    Popping the brake and the truck mmediately coming to a stop would be the best response I would expect. The longer the roll out, the less comfortable I would feel. With that said, if there is any roll out, that may also be normal due to the weight of the truck and the number of axles.

    I guess NFPA also wants us to incorporate redundant systems into our truck operations by listing wheel chocks as part of the mandatory equipment on all trucks.

    Going back twenty years to highschool physics... "An object at rest has a tendancy to stay at rest unless acted upon by another force... An object in motion has a tendancy to stay in motion unless acted upon by another force..."

    The next thing is anything that WE can do to keep the truck from moving will help. From parking brake to wheel chocks, on to turning a front tire in against a curb will help keep pthe truck from rolling away.
    Jeffrey

    "Plan for the worst, hope for the best!"

  22. #22
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    11

    Default Answer to our questions...

    FIREMECH1, I went and asked some friends on another forum and here is the response I got:

    NFPA 1911, 2007 edition.
    16.4.1 The parking brake system shall be tested at least annually.
    16.4.2 The parking brake system shall hold the fully loaded fire apparatus on a grade of 20 percent or the steepest grade in the fire department's jurisdiction if a grade of 20 percent is not available.
    16.4.3 The parking brake shall be tested with the apparatus facing uphill and again facing downhill on the same grade.
    In my area, I have a grocery store parking lot with a side entrance that is very steep. I do not know if it is 20 percent grade, but it is the steepest grade around here. I use it to test the trucks in the nearby districts.

    Ronnie Fulcher


    The link below lets you convert an angle reading to percent grade so you can document the grade in the terminology the spec is written in. As you can see in the chart 20 % grade is app. 11 1/2 degree slope.
    http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/sl...de-d_1562.html

    Patrick Collins
    ASE Master Auto, Med/Hvy Truck, Truck Equipment
    EVT Master Apparatus
    EVT Master Ambulance
    City Of Yuma, AZ

    Just had to go to the right people and ask politely for their help.
    Jeffrey

    "Plan for the worst, hope for the best!"

  23. #23
    Forum Member
    FIREMECH1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    HUSKER LAND
    Posts
    2,425

    Default

    hehe.... I'm also on that same site. If you're clever, you'll find me.

    Remember, I already know what it says for "ANNUAL INSPECTION".

    What I am talking about, is a "DAILY" brake test. One that will show a broken spring in the spring chamber, that unless you wait until you roll down and hit something, you won't find until it is too late.

    The NFPA has some good guidelines, and some that are just plain ridiculous. If you want to live and die by only what the NFPA says, then you are in trouble.

    We are progressive on the mechanical side, as the FD is on their side for their operations and equipment.

    If you don't want to do a daily brake test, fine. But if you hit something, your precious book isn't going to save you from liability. If, by chance a rig did roll down and hit something, it is duly noted that it passed a prescribed park brake test at 0700, when the accident happened at 1500. Things break, but the driver covered his butt by doing his daily checks. No lawyer will win this round.

    And all those credentials, I have them too.

    FM1
    I'm the one Fire and Rescue calls, when they need to be Rescued.

    Quote Originally Posted by EastKyFF
    "Firemens gets antsies. Theys wants to goes to fires. Sometimeses they haves to waits."

  24. #24
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    50

    Default

    I guess our department goes kind of overboard when it comes to brake tests. I applaud this over achieving mentality though since the brakes will be the only thing that will save your bacon on the road. We do a daily brake test to satisfy the California Vehicle Code for commercial driving. This consists of a COLA test at minimum
    C- Cut in (note the pressure)
    O- Cut out (note the pressure)
    L- Leak test
    A-Alarm test

    I am not sure how many of our Engineers do a park brake test but i do every morning which consists of pulling the rig out to the front apron, allow it to roll and then pull it. No more than 5 mph when this is done.

  25. #25
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Pa Wilds
    Posts
    586

    Default

    Nullygarho: Easy way to check grade. You will need a 2 x 4 stud 8 ft. long. They are usually 97" (allows 1" trim to square), a level and a tape measure. Definition of percent grade is the drop in feet for a 100 ft. run. Changing to inches does the same thing. Put the level on the top of the 2 x 4. Place one end of the stud on the road, and raise the down hill end of the stud until it is level. Last, measure the distance from the bottom of the stud to the road and the inches you measure will be the approximate grade.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Getting nervous list expires on July 24th.
    By Prime Nightmare in forum Hiring & Employment Discussion
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 07-15-2010, 02:23 PM
  2. Replies: 19
    Last Post: 07-19-2005, 11:22 PM
  3. World Of Fire Report: 12-07-04
    By PaulBrown in forum World of Fire Daily Report
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 12-24-2004, 07:14 PM
  4. 2 firefighters die during Pack test
    By EMTNAS in forum Wildland Firefighting
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 07-05-2004, 08:11 PM
  5. World Of Fire Report: 02-17-04
    By PaulBrown in forum World of Fire Daily Report
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 02-18-2004, 07:47 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts

Log in

Click here to log in or register