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    Default Search and Rescue with or without a hose line?

    What is your departments policy for this?
    Last edited by WAX; 10-10-2011 at 03:45 AM.

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    No special policy because it should be the call of the officer in charge of the crew or of the IC. Search and rescue can be preformed with or without a hoseline depending on the situation.

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    Our SOP is for the first engine to pull a line and the 1st special service to perform a search. Because we normally get the engine first, there is normally a line in operation while searching, but the search team does not drag a hose with them.

    I was taught to search without a hose line, this way the search team can move faster. Also, if an unresponsive subject is found, the team will have to drop the hose line in order to evacuate them.

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    Truck and Rescue Companies do this most of the time.
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    Policy here is all seacrh crews will have a handline.

    In all reality, we rarely have a team assigned as search only. Generally speaking the intial handline performs a search while advancing, and the backup line(s) will search in other areas when we have an indication the structure may be occupied.
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    No policy.

    However, we are considering a policy for gum chewing, while walking.

    Seems some need help with that.
    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
    No policy.

    However, we are considering a policy for gum chewing, while walking.

    Seems some need help with that.
    Policy should probably be that you are not to chew gum while walking unless incident command is established, safety officer is present and all of the command functions are filled.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Policy here is all seacrh crews will have a handline.

    In all reality, we rarely have a team assigned as search only. Generally speaking the intial handline performs a search while advancing, and the backup line(s) will search in other areas when we have an indication the structure may be occupied.
    So if you pull up and see someone hanging from the second floor window and they disappear while you are throwing a ladder to the window, do you drag a hoseline as well?

    Seems like a pretty open thing to have a policy on. I'm all for getting the first handline in place and that is the majority of what we do as well, but giving the officer flexibility on what is dynamic seems like it would work better.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spencer534 View Post
    So if you pull up and see someone hanging from the second floor window and they disappear while you are throwing a ladder to the window, do you drag a hoseline as well?

    Seems like a pretty open thing to have a policy on. I'm all for getting the first handline in place and that is the majority of what we do as well, but giving the officer flexibility on what is dynamic seems like it would work better.
    Please... don't encourage him.

    Let's not go down this road for the millionth time.
    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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    Understood. Just getting back into the Forums so it may take a while.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spencer534 View Post
    Understood. Just getting back into the Forums so it may take a while.
    He will tell you that there are no second stories in his neighborhood... and a whole host of other crap.
    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
    He will tell you that there are no second stories in his neighborhood... and a whole host of other crap.
    No, I will tell him there are very few ..........
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spencer534 View Post
    So if you pull up and see someone hanging from the second floor window and they disappear while you are throwing a ladder to the window, do you drag a hoseline as well?

    Seems like a pretty open thing to have a policy on. I'm all for getting the first handline in place and that is the majority of what we do as well, but giving the officer flexibility on what is dynamic seems like it would work better.
    Not going to comment on the 2nd story thing, however, it is our policy that search crews have a handline as we want them to be able to control extenstion in addition to serach duties, as well as have the ability to protect themselves, as well as any occupants.

    Simply makes no sense to operate without a handline if you are on the same floor as the fire.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Not going to comment on the 2nd story thing, however, it is our policy that search crews have a handline as we want them to be able to control extenstion in addition to serach duties, as well as have the ability to protect themselves, as well as any occupants.

    Simply makes no sense to operate without a handline if you are on the same floor as the fire.
    Sorry ChiefKN. I know I said I understood, but.....

    Ok LA, forget the second story. Take a rancher, would you still wait to pull a handline, get it flaked out and charged or would you just go straight to the window, pop-in, close the interior door and grab the victim?

    Take a report from a mother who states that her 6-month old baby is in a crib in that room. Would you drag a hose through the house to get to them, or just pop-in.

    Again, I'm all for the first tactic to be fire extinguishment except when there is an imminent rescue.

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    If your firefighters are skilled enough, let them do it.

    If your officers are firefighters who understand how to operate basic fireground strategies, they will let them.

    If you train for excellence and not mediocrity, you can do it safely.

    If you meet this criteria, base your decision around the competency of your men.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spencer534 View Post
    Sorry ChiefKN. I know I said I understood, but.....

    Ok LA, forget the second story. Take a rancher, would you still wait to pull a handline, get it flaked out and charged or would you just go straight to the window, pop-in, close the interior door and grab the victim?

    Take a report from a mother who states that her 6-month old baby is in a crib in that room. Would you drag a hose through the house to get to them, or just pop-in.

    Again, I'm all for the first tactic to be fire extinguishment except when there is an imminent rescue.
    Standard procedure would be take handlines and search through the structure Geberally the firsdt handline will be assigned to find and hit the fire. They will search rooms off the hallway while doing this.

    The second line would be assigned to search and extension control. That second crew may have additional members if we beleive that the building is occupied but they would be searching off and under the protection of the 2nd handline.

    Depending on fire conditions they would exit either through the structure or via the window.

    Our typical site built residental structure are small enough (less than 2000-2300 sf) that this system works well. A large percentage of our homes are single wides or small double-wide trailers where search can be accomplished by the initial handline crew simply by adding on additional member.

    Any additional questions please PM as this has been discussed in open forums previously.
    Last edited by LaFireEducator; 10-10-2011 at 06:14 PM.
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    If you have a skilled, trained, and hopefully experienced, firefighters in supervisory positions the decision whether to search with a handline would be made at the company level by the company officers.

    The truth is the only way to search PRACTICALLY with a hose line is to NOT search with the hose line. When you get to an area to search anchor at the doorway with the hoseline and the nozzle man, let the crew split off the line and search the room. When they are done they return to the hoseline and move to the next area to search.

    Frankly, if the ladder crew and the engine crew, coordinate efforts it is MUCH faster to search with the hose line.
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    Cool My .02

    Been awhile since I've been in, but here's my two cents.

    If you have a skilled, trained, and hopefully experienced, firefighters in supervisory positions the decision whether to search with a handline would be made at the company level by the company officers.

    The truth is the only way to search PRACTICALLY with a hose line is to NOT search with the hose line.
    I adhere to this theory..... We just had this debate at my FD and having been on incidents with "confirmed rescues" my theory is "move quick, move light". For me, (1) FF grabs the water can, (1) FF grabs the irons (assist with reaching and searching small closets and such, plus emergency egress tools if needed) and I grab the TIC. My Engineer stays outside to track our movement (right/left hand search, 1st/2nd/3rd floor, A/B/C/D side, etc) and pulls the Medical Cache for the victim.

    I am also a firm believer that if you need a hose line for the room that the victim is in, more than likely it is a "body recovery" not a "rescue". For a body recovery I say take a line, for a rescue no line. Definitely train, train, train on whichever works for you.

    We are fortunate to have quick responses and (3) Units (2 Medic Engines and a Truck) on scene within 7-9 minutes from dispatch, normally. So this works for us.....
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    My department has always preached that going with a hoseline would be ideal, but you won't see it in an SOP.

    Why?

    Because as the previous poster stated, "light and fast" can be critical. This isn't a leisurely crawl around like you lost a contact lens. This is a quick, "they can't breathe" get them out of the IDLH scramble.

    I have done many searches where the hoseline went one way, and I went the other to sweep a bedroom or a hallway. It just makes more sense.
    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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    Depends on the situation.

    "Easy" grab and go (victim in window)? Grab and go.

    Many's the person who's pointed out here that if the fire is out you can search the premises at your leisure.

    If your search is precautionary (no known victims, but you're still searching 'just in case'), it would seem like having water with you would be a good thing. See the previous paragraph.

    If you have known victims, and the fire isn't going to succumb to a water can or a single handline, then fast is the order of the day. Get in, do your search, get out.

    It also depends on your resources. Those lucky enough to have multiple staffed companies on the way make far different decisions than a rural outfit that arrives at a daytime incident with two on the engine and the nearest mutual aid ten minutes or more away.
    Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

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    Quote Originally Posted by WAX View Post
    What is your departments policy for this?

    It depends on the situation at hand. Generally a primary search can be done without a hoseline, as it's a quick and thorough search. But if it's too dangerous, we'll wait for a hoseline.

    Basement searches generally require a back-up line set in place prior to the descent.

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    1st due truck does search.
    1st due engine brings hoses.
    "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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    Curious, if you're a 1-3 man company and you'll be the only ones there for a good while...

    With a report of occupants inside, do you spend the time to charge a line and enter?

    What about at night and no one meets you on the lawn?

    Not arguing, just curious on how others choose to operate.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tajm611 View Post
    Curious, if you're a 1-3 man company and you'll be the only ones there for a good while...

    With a report of occupants inside, do you spend the time to charge a line and enter?

    What about at night and no one meets you on the lawn?

    Not arguing, just curious on how others choose to operate.
    Glad you went down this road, because this is the reality of many places.

    My opinion: Depending on the level of skill of the people on scene, the configuration of the structure, and the proximity of more personnel, I would probably elect to undertake a search even if we're shorthanded. The victims inside aren't reading NFPA books; they're dying. I would find it unconscionable to stand there like an idiot and let somebody die without at least trying to get them out. It would be more dangerous than we would like, but you do what you gotta do.

    And being shorthanded could push my thoughts in either way on the hose line issue. Because there's less help to rescue a search crew, I'm more inclined to send a line in. But because it would impede movement on even a simple rescue, I'm more inclined to leave it out.

    Too many variables to make a blanket statement, just some cud to chew.
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    I don't mind going in with a line if that's what the situation calls for. Unfortunately if you feel the hoseline to be a necessity then odds are extremely low you'll pull anyone out alive. That being said, we've actually done both. I think it's entirely possible (as we've done this often) to do both, search with a line and without -if manpower allows.

    Many forget we're not just searching for victims but fire. We send an attack team in with a line to the probable fire origin to search for 1. Fire and 2. Victims. At the same time, we send a search team in sans-hand line to search for 1. Victims and 2. Fire (if need be). We coordinate between the two heavily and it works out very, very well.

    It's easy to overlook the fact that one part of the house necessitates hoseline protection while the other part of the building may still be able to sustain life. Recent NIST reports are finding this to be fairly common.
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