1. #51
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    Why does there need to be a blanket policy? I see exactly what Memphis is saying.

    If you start out properly, upwind of the fire there is no need to wear an SCBA face piece and be on air. If the wind shifts and as you move in closer, take a breath and put your mask on. Wow. Common Sense.

    We all grip about blanket safety policy and this person is tying our hands, they don't let us use common sense...

    But here we are saying don't use common sense. There is no possible win. There MUST be two extremists in an argument/debate.
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    I think what is so hard for some of us to understand is the fact that there are no good reasons not to wear one. Plenty of reasons justifying why you need to, but the reasons on why not to are absent. Unless you count laziness. That's about all you can really say.
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    Quote Originally Posted by GTRider245 View Post
    I think what is so hard for some of us to understand is the fact that there are no good reasons not to wear one. Plenty of reasons justifying why you need to, but the reasons on why not to are absent. Unless you count laziness. That's about all you can really say.
    Like I said previously, add too cool, too macho, too old school, to too lazy, and you have all the bases covered.

    There is no logical reason for not wearing your SCBA.
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    I really can't understand how wearing a mask while working the nozzle at a car fire shouldn't be required.

    Rationalize it however you like, but it is just stupid.
    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.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChiefKN View Post
    I really can't understand how wearing a mask while working the nozzle at a car fire shouldn't be required.

    Rationalize it however you like, but it is just stupid.
    I'm with you on this one, Chief. This falls squarely into the list of "issues" that I can't believe we're even still debating in the modern fire service.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    Like I said previously, add too cool, too macho, too old school, to too lazy, and you have all the bases covered.

    There is no logical reason for not wearing your SCBA.
    Who is saying anything about being too lazy, old school or anything?

    Car fire, get out with the pack on. If you're upwind and standing off from the vehicle using the reach of the stream to knock down the initial fire, you're fine. As you approach put the mask on. Novel concept.

    By this theory of you MUST wear it, do you:

    Where the mask on air while in rehab after a fire because you're no further away from the smoke?

    Where the mask on air while stretching lines to the very front door while smoke is coming out?


    Literally NO ONE has said wear nothing and eat smoke while standing in the midst of the smoke. No one. All anyone has said was use your common sense.

    Complaint after complaint that the NFPA, OSHA this group the boogyman etc etc are taking away or ability to think. Yet here we are, when people say to use your common sense, we're "too lazy, too macho, too old school".
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    Quote Originally Posted by FWDbuff View Post
    Are you an officer? I hope that you encourage the men under you to wear their masks.
    He is a hard charger, p i s s er, leader that is in where the action it. Probably one of a very few that is!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonnee View Post
    He is a hard charger, p i s s er, leader that is in where the action it. Probably one of a very few that is!
    He also gets more than three vehicle fires a year. I would trust his judgement.
    I doubt anyone here would go on air for a smoker.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MemphisE34a View Post
    You guessed wrong. I am not ridiculing anyone. I answered the question - don't stand in the smoke and you don't need an SCBA. The same reason that engine drivers at house fires don't pack nor even don turnouts.

    Oh, and another answer to a previous question - hold your breath.
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    Again, I couldn't begin to pretend to care less whether some guy in Memphis, or Butt Hump Nevada, wears his mask. It has no effect on me personally at all. I wear my SCBA to fight car fires, dumpster fires, structure fires, and whenever else the situation dictates the need to. I am NOT going to risk the wind changing and the smoke and toxic gasses being blown over me at a stupid, it's junk anyways, nothing to save, car fire. Some have said put it out from a distance. ReallY? No overhaul? No investigation? RIGHT! You may feel your life isn't worth the time to put on the pack, I feel differently. Geezus, put the thing on your back on the rig, stretch the line and while it is being charged put on your mask. How hard is that? Pure damn laziness, too lazy to put it on, and then too lazy to swap the bottle out afterwards.

    Further, and I am fully aware that some of you will call me a Safety Sally, or a Nancy, or a pussy, or whatever other stupid insult you can muster, to try and shout me down. Sorry NO. To me your stance on not wearing an SCBA at a fire puts you in the same category as LA and some of his ridiculous ideas and policies. I refuse to teach my students and my firefighters to attack a car fire without COMPLETE PPE, including SCBA. There are too many variables that we can't control, like what is being transported in the car...pesticides, charcoal liughter fluid, paint or solvents, ammunition, and so much more, that can turn that "simple" car fire and one breath into a death sentence or a life altering, crippling, event. The other variable is the wind, either from nature, or from a semi passing the scene at 55 plus miles an hour.

    We will never agree on this because frankly you can't justify the risk of your position. It is that simple.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    I am NOT going to risk the wind changing and the smoke and toxic gasses being blown over me at a stupid, it's junk anyways, nothing to save, car fire.

    So answer this honestly. Just yes or no. I'm not calling you anything.

    Are you on air when:

    You're stretching lines to the front door on arrival?
    You're in rehab and the fire is still off gassing?
    You're defensive manning monitors or exposure protection?
    You're standing at the pump panal?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonnee View Post
    He is a hard charger, p i s s er, leader that is in where the action it. Probably one of a very few that is!
    So, in order to be a hard charger, pi ss er, leader, that is in where the action is, you can't wear an SCBA? Come on that is just plain ridiculous. My Captain at work is one of the most aggressive, where the action is, leaders I have ever worked for and he wears his SCBA.

    Do whatever you wish, and your FD lets you get away with. It doesn't make it right or safe.
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    I think ya need to take a step back, take a breath and re-read what some have wrote.

    No one in this thread has said to NOT wear an SCBA.
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    'The fire went out and nobody got hurt' is a poor excuse for a fireground critique.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnVBFD View Post
    So answer this honestly. Just yes or no. I'm not calling you anything.

    Are you on air when:

    You're stretching lines to the front door on arrival?
    You're in rehab and the fire is still off gassing?
    You're defensive manning monitors or exposure protection?
    You're standing at the pump panal?

    On that note, why not packed up but not packed out. I'd be worried if you couldn't (with gloves on) remove helmet, put mask on, and put your helmet back on within 10 seconds. I always get off the truck sans mask because, with my trade back ground, I like to find out what kind of vehicle I'm dealing with. If our driver can't avoid the smoke then I'm masked up and on air. It's a common sense thing. Sure, you can walk around on air the entire time, or you can use it when you need it. Busy companies tend to use it when they need it.
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    How stupid do you really want to make this? These questions are frankly, idiotic, and insulting, and you know it. But I'll play along just to appease you.


    Quote Originally Posted by JohnVBFD View Post
    So answer this honestly. Just yes or no. I'm not calling you anything.

    Are you on air when:

    You're stretching lines to the front door on arrival? NO, BUT if smoke is coming from the front door or front of the building I will stop prior to that area and donn my mask. Although, and I disagree with this, I do know some FDs that use a tactic, that I can't think of the name of right now, where they do get off the rig with their mask in place.

    You're in rehab and the fire is still off gassing? Seriosuly, this is just plain stupid and you know it. Rehab is OUTSIDE the hot zone and free of smoke or toxins. At least it is here. So once again the answer is NO.

    You're defensive manning monitors or exposure protection? That would depend entirely upon whether I was in the smoke or not. I have done exposure protection where I was in the smoke and needed an SCBA. So the answer is both YES, and NO.

    You're standing at the pump panal? I have never worn an SCBA while operating a pump. I have seen pump operators wear one when the wind changed and their position became unbearable without one. I would have you talk to the MPO on my rig at work and ask him whether having an SCBA available for the pump operator was a good idea or not. The answer is YES, I would if I needed it to be able to stay with my rig to oerate the pump because of smoke conditions. Normally the answer would be No
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    How stupid do you really want to make this? These questions are frankly, idiotic, and insulting, and you know it. But I'll play along just to appease you.




    Anything you want to ask me?

    So, not once did I call you anything, but you start with "Hey stupid.." And you wonder why people have a beef with you at times.

    So as I knew the answer were no, they are ALL in positions where if the wind changed, you would use your head and rethink what you are doing.

    But we are all "idiots" "too macho" "too lazy" etc etc etc for doing the same thing at a car fire?

    Take a step back, it's ok. You're putting words and thoughts into people's mouths. You're used to arguing with LA all the time. In this case you are being the extremist.

    As you said, no biggie. You want to see a car fire and get off the truct on air so be it. Works for you. But don't call others "too lazy" "too stupid" "too macho" because we can practice some common sense.

    PS- It is Houston if I recall correctly due to the Reed Hood that gets off on air.
    Last edited by JohnVBFD; 07-23-2011 at 08:19 PM.
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    'The fire went out and nobody got hurt' is a poor excuse for a fireground critique.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnVBFD View Post
    So, not once did I call you anything, but you start with "Hey stupid.." And you wonder why people have a beef with you at times.

    So as I knew the answer were no, they are ALL in positions where if the wind changed, you would use your head and rethink what you are doing.

    But we are all "idiots" "too macho" "too lazy" etc etc etc for doing the same thing at a car fire?

    Take a step back, it's ok. You're putting words and thoughts into people's mouths. You're used to arguing with LA all the time. In this case you are being the extremist.

    As you said, no biggie. You want to see a car fire and get off the truct on air so be it. Works for you. But don't call others "too lazy" "too stupid" "too macho" because we can practice some common sense.

    PS- It is Houston if I recall correctly due to the Reed Hood that gets off on air.
    While I applaud you for reasonable thinking and eloquent speech (and the ability to keep cool), please make note that there are a few people here you simply can not disagree with. They will become more and more agitated and vocal about their displeasure with any type of dissent. While they may be knowledgeable, they tend to fly off at the handle if you do anything differently.

    You are not stupid, you just do something different; just like we, memphis, and many other busy (and not so busy) companies operate.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnVBFD View Post
    So, not once did I call you anything, but you start with "Hey stupid.." And you wonder why people have a beef with you at times.

    Actually, I called your questions stupid and insulting. I didn't call you anything. I don't think YOU are stupid, I think that entire post by you was stupid. Frankly, I do not wonder at all why people occasionally have a "beef" with me at times. I admit I am very opininated and am not intimidated by where people are from if I believe they are wrong. Besides that, if we all agreed why have a discussion forum in the first place?


    So as I knew the answer were no, they are ALL in positions where if the wind changed, you would use your head and rethink what you are doing.

    I don't know how you do it we set rehab up OUTSIDE the hot zone. Judging current wind conditions we place rehab it what seems to be the safest position. If the wind or conditions change we move rehab. Seems kind of obvious to us.

    But we are all "idiots" "too macho" "too lazy" etc etc etc for doing the same thing at a car fire?

    I get off the rig with an SCBA on my back and my mask hung around my neck. I advance the line to where I will begin my attack, outside of the smoke, donn my mask and go on air, then commence my attack on the fire.

    Whether I donn my mask for 5 minutes, or wear it for the entire car fire operation, I still need to swap out my bottle so why not just use it? The I don't have to worry about wind change and quickly donning my mask, or having sucked in a lung full of toxins.

    I don't believe I called anyone an idiot. I called your questions idiotic because they were an obvious set up to try and prove some point that has absolutely nothing to do with wearing an SCBA at a car fire. I did say too lazy, too macho, too cool, and too old school. Please if you are going to attempt to quote me at least get the quote and the context right.


    Take a step back, it's ok. You're putting words and thoughts into people's mouths. You're used to arguing with LA all the time. In this case you are being the extremist.

    Nope you have said a couple of things that I never said so listen to your own advice here. If the SCBA is on your back, and the mission is a car fire, just wear the mask. Why carry it around, not donn the mask and risk breathing all that nasty crap? Make me understand why YOU believe the risk is worth it. Because it sure isn't to me, OR the majority in this topic.

    As you said, no biggie. You want to see a car fire and get off the truct on air so be it. Works for you. But don't call others "too lazy" "too stupid" "too macho" because we can practice some common sense.

    Never once ssaid to get off the truck breathing air. Remember your putting words in people's mouth point above? Pot meet kettle. You really should read more closely what I have said. In fact, go back up a couple of paragraphs because there it is and NO WHERE do I say get off the rig with even the mask on my face.

    If common sense is waiting until the smoke is blowing in your face at a car fire to put on your mask I don't want any part of it and I will use my uncommon sense and mask up.


    PS- It is Houston if I recall correctly due to the Reed Hood that gets off on air.

    There is a department near my career FD that gets off the rig on air too. Just seems wasteful to me of air I could be using in the hot zone.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tajm611 View Post
    While I applaud you for reasonable thinking and eloquent speech (and the ability to keep cool), please make note that there are a few people here you simply can not disagree with. They will become more and more agitated and vocal about their displeasure with any type of dissent. While they may be knowledgeable, they tend to fly off at the handle if you do anything differently.

    You are not stupid, you just do something different; just like we, memphis, and many other busy (and not so busy) companies operate.
    Just for the record...

    I never called anyone stupid.

    I never called anyone idiotic.

    I pointed out the obvious stupidity and insulting nature of the questions I was asked. They had NO elelvance to the original question.

    I have said repeatedly I don't care if YOU, Memphis34a, JohnVBFD, or anyone else chooses not to wear an SCBA at a car fire. I have also said that I will not let that go unchallenged because I believe it is unnecessary and dangerous with no justification for that risk. You don't like my opinion, and further, you don't like that I won't let it go with the cutesy comments that have been made to me over it.

    I asked before, and I will now ask you, IF the SCBA is on your back, why not just use it? I have never understood the reason for carrying an SCBA on your back, entering the hot zone of a fire with smoke and toxic by-products, and not using it. Why not just leave it on the rig instead of carrying it around?

    Frankly, you and I have battled before. We have also agreed before. It doesn't make either of us better, or smarter, than the other and your condescending little speech above was completely unnecessary. Especially since you have been called by more than a few here on your own posting style.

    Stay safe and have a nice day.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    Just for the record...

    I never called anyone stupid.

    I never called anyone idiotic.

    I pointed out the obvious stupidity and insulting nature of the questions I was asked. They had NO elelvance to the original question.

    I have said repeatedly I don't care if YOU, Memphis34a, JohnVBFD, or anyone else chooses not to wear an SCBA at a car fire. I have also said that I will not let that go unchallenged because I believe it is unnecessary and dangerous with no justification for that risk. You don't like my opinion, and further, you don't like that I won't let it go with the cutesy comments that have been made to me over it.

    I asked before, and I will now ask you, IF the SCBA is on your back, why not just use it? I have never understood the reason for carrying an SCBA on your back, entering the hot zone of a fire with smoke and toxic by-products, and not using it. Why not just leave it on the rig instead of carrying it around?

    Frankly, you and I have battled before. We have also agreed before. It doesn't make either of us better, or smarter, than the other and your condescending little speech above was completely unnecessary. Especially since you have been called by more than a few here on your own posting style.

    Stay safe and have a nice day.
    Because its not uncommon to receive multiple calls before we return back to quarters. We have a bottle on each pack (5 packs) and 6 spares. SOP's state that you can not make entry on a bottle below 2000psi (we use 2216psi dragers). Using air when I'm not in an DLH environment will severely hamper my response at a structure fire or anything requiring sustained exposure to a DLH environment. We had a mobile cascade unit but it broke 3 years ago and the chief didn't find it worth his time to replace. We have a rescue unit with 6 more bottles and our BC's response vehicle also has 6. Coupled with a normal response manpower-wise and you're looking at 3-4 bottles a firefighter. We've had situations where we knew we'd be in a bind so we'd shuttle bottles back and forth in a 1982 chevy van we keep at a station.

    Our problem may or not be unique and I know it is in fact a problem but it's just a nuance we have to deal with. So in these regards, to go on air in any other situation but an actual DLH environment isn't good for us. You'll see many of us walk around outside with mask around necks, connected to regulators, bottles turned on, and the whole nine but we won't click on until we feel necessary.

    Hope that clarifies any confusion and belief that we're running around in smoke huffing it down just to get our face dirty.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tajm611 View Post
    Because its not uncommon to receive multiple calls before we return back to quarters. We have a bottle on each pack (5 packs) and 6 spares. SOP's state that you can not make entry on a bottle below 2000psi (we use 2216psi dragers). Using air when I'm not in an DLH environment will severely hamper my response at a structure fire or anything requiring sustained exposure to a DLH environment. We had a mobile cascade unit but it broke 3 years ago and the chief didn't find it worth his time to replace. We have a rescue unit with 6 more bottles and our BC's response vehicle also has 6. Coupled with a normal response manpower-wise and you're looking at 3-4 bottles a firefighter. We've had situations where we knew we'd be in a bind so we'd shuttle bottles back and forth in a 1982 chevy van we keep at a station.

    Our problem may or not be unique and I know it is in fact a problem but it's just a nuance we have to deal with. So in these regards, to go on air in any other situation but an actual DLH environment isn't good for us. You'll see many of us walk around outside with mask around necks, connected to regulators, bottles turned on, and the whole nine but we won't click on until we feel necessary.

    Hope that clarifies any confusion and belief that we're running around in smoke huffing it down just to get our face dirty.
    So in 3 years no one has come up with a solution to the problem of the broken portable cascade truck? How about instead of carrying 6 spare bottles on your rig you carry 10? Seems like an easy answer to not having enough air available. The quint I am on carries 5 SCBA and 11 spare bottles. The engine in my station carries 5 SCBA and 10 spare bottles. We have a Rescue that carries 30 spare bottles, and the duty chief carries 6 spares in his suv. No rig other than ambulances carries less than 8 spare bottles and some carry more. We also have a rack in each station that has a minimum of 6 spare bottles in it.

    I guess I need to clarify my point for how WE fight a car fire. We knock down the main body of fire from a distance, 20 feet or more, then we move in to finish extinguishment, do the overhaul necessary, and then the investigation if it doesn't seem right. We are not standing out in the clean air merrily spraying water sucking down our air bottles. We hit it, get in, and get it done.

    I hope that clears up some confusion about what we do.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    So in 3 years no one has come up with a solution to the problem of the broken portable cascade truck? How about instead of carrying 6 spare bottles on your rig you carry 10? Seems like an easy answer to not having enough air available. The quint I am on carries 5 SCBA and 11 spare bottles. The engine in my station carries 5 SCBA and 10 spare bottles. We have a Rescue that carries 30 spare bottles, and the duty chief carries 6 spares in his suv. No rig other than ambulances carries less than 8 spare bottles and some carry more. We also have a rack in each station that has a minimum of 6 spare bottles in it.

    I guess I need to clarify my point for how WE fight a car fire. We knock down the main body of fire from a distance, 20 feet or more, then we move in to finish extinguishment, do the overhaul necessary, and then the investigation if it doesn't seem right. We are not standing out in the clean air merrily spraying water sucking down our air bottles. We hit it, get in, and get it done.

    I hope that clears up some confusion about what we do.
    It's not like there's empty slots or space for bottles that we're filling with treats, there's isn't any room. When we asked for larger bottle holders, we were denied. We know what we need but we make due with what we have. I think you're agreeing with how we operate as it's fairly close to your operations. The miscommunication is that, and they can correct me if I'm wrong, memphis, john, and I were getting down and fighting fire with no pack at all/ packing up but never going on air. My only reasoning for that conclusion is the
    "if you are wearing it, why not use it" comment. We, only speaking of my crew, use our air frequently but we are very frugal about it.
    ‎"I was always taught..." Four words impacting fire service education in the most negative of ways. -Bill Carey

  23. #73
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    I'm a bit lost... can we clarify this?

    YOU are the nozzle on a well involved car fire.

    As you approach the car, do you mask up and go on air?

    OR

    Do you stay unmasked or off air until you think the smoke will blow in your face? If that is the case, do you stop, close the bale, put the line down, mask up/go on air, pick up the line, open the bale and proceed with the fire attack?

    Or is there something else?

    For me, its go on air right before I pick up the charged line.
    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."

  24. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChiefKN View Post
    I'm a bit lost... can we clarify this?

    YOU are the nozzle on a well involved car fire.

    As you approach the car, do you mask up and go on air?

    OR

    Do you stay unmasked or off air until you think the smoke will blow in your face? If that is the case, do you stop, close the bale, put the line down, mask up/go on air, pick up the line, open the bale and proceed with the fire attack?

    Or is there something else?

    For me, its go on air right before I pick up the charged line.
    Like I said, it depends on the situation. If I'm pulling up to a real burner (as in more will be needed than a bumper line) then I mask up after flaking out hose. If my hands touch hose as either nozzle or back up, then I'm on air. If I'm just flaking out hose and standing near my lt, my mask is around my neck. We normally give the nozzle (at small dumpster or car fires) to the rookie as it give us a chance to observe and work with him on hose handling.

    To add to the fact that we aren't negligent, we pull the bumper line for MVA's, even the ones with no fire or smoke (talking about pretty decent sized accidents, not fender benders). Any man on the line is masked up with bottles on and waiting. If need be, to click in and go on air takes less than second.

    Structure fires, it's the same. I mask up outside the truck while getting orders from my officer. Gives me a clear view of my building and subconsciously slows me down mentally to keep from getting tunnel vision. I understand it may be different than what you do and thats fine.

    I know it's a horrible excuse but many guys hate to walk around with mask on and not flowing air because Drager Nova's are notorious for getting very fogged up. I feel confident in my ability to get down dressed out, gloves and all, and be able to take off my helmet, pull back my hood, slide my mask on, pull back my hood, and buckle my helmet. Takes all of 5 seconds.
    ‎"I was always taught..." Four words impacting fire service education in the most negative of ways. -Bill Carey

  25. #75
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    With the new electric car batteries, increasing presence of electronics, and just our human tendency to invent new stuff that has unknown combustion hazards/poisons, I can see the day when everyone on a fire scene regardless, will have to be on air.

    Hopefully those new lightweight-low profile SCBA's get out here soon!

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