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Thread: Would You or Wouldn't You?

  1. #1
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    Default Would You or Wouldn't You?

    Here's are two pictures sent by a MemberZone subscriber. The question I'm posing is would you or would you not do what the fire department is doing in this photo? Let's hear your opinion.
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    What exactly are they doing? Are they stabilizing the pole to permit extrication?
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    Yeah Chief, not sure what is going on here. I would imagine that they have a game plan, have taken proper precautions and are operating in as safe as a manner as the situation permits. Without knowing more I would fall back on the statement that; We are professionally trained risk management operators. Who better than us to assess the risk of an operation and operate as safely as possible?

    So what are they doing?
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    I'm a little curious at what we're trying to accomplish here.The Aerial,retracted is strong enough to tie off to BUT: Doing so opens another can of worms. The top part(of the pole) isn't all that heavy and it is supported on one end albeit poorly. If I was doing it,I'd probably tie the piece they are tying off to the ladder to the top of the pole instead.If the Utility Co. wasn't too far out it's a good job for them, What exactly is going on here?

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    I'm guessing that is a light weight composite pole. The way it broke off, it appears to be hanging by the wires. The cover is off the side of the pole like someone is disconnecting the wires. The power to the pole may or may not be on depending where the photo cell is and the voltage to the light.

    They appear to be securing the bottom of the top so they can diconnect or cut the wires and any support cables inside the pole. Then they can remove the broken part of the pole.

    If that is what they are doing, our department would do the same but we have an electrician and 5 power company employees on our VFD. They do the maintenance on the street lights and most of the parking lot lights in our area.

    Remember this is no different than any other time we deal with electicity in the fire service, if you do not have the training leave it alone and let someone with the knowledge and training do it. Just my opinion. Stay safe.

    Brad

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    I would answer with a qualified "Maybe". I would need to know if the pole is energized or the power secured, what type of material is the pole (weight), what is the status of any occupants of the car.

    I am not real comfortable with using a ladder truck as a crane. They were not designed for that purpose and using it that way would have to be a last chance, last ditch effort. Tow trucks, rigging evolutions and similar methods are much better overall IMHO.
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    I would need to know more of the patient situation. If you can easily get the patient out of the vehicle and then get everyone away there may not be a need to tie off the pole. It would be important as stated earlier to identify if the pole has been de-engerized. If not you would initially need to create a safe zone around the area, this would be priority over stabilzing the pole.

    If the pole need stabilized for a lengthy extrication I think this might be an option that I would contemplate. I need more information to make a solid yes or no.

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    I'm gonna say no, why go through all that when the passenger's side doors don't seem to be as effected? Also, with the way the pole is sitting if it did fall/fail it's going to fall towards the driver's side because of the cross member that holds the light should act like a kick-stand. Not sure exactly what they're hoping to accomplish here.....
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  9. #9
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    I would say no. Stealing copper in uniform and with department rig is considered a faux pas.
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    To clarify my answer, the pole is lite weight. The light weighs more than the broken top of the pole. If it comes down, hanging by 2 or 3 small gauge wires, the light will pull it toward the street. Securing the pole is only to disconnect / cut the wires and drop it to the ground. It’s going to take 2 or 3 minutes at the longest. Once the wires are disconnected the pole and light can be removed by hand. The entire pole can be carried by 2 individuals, the top part with light should weigh less than 50 lbs.

    The car appears to only have minor damage and if the occupants did not need rapid extrication , we are going to make the scene as safe as possible. Around here we are going to have to remove the pole top and light before the car can be removed and traffic restored. Why not make the scene as safe as possible at the start instead of the end of the call. Just my opinion.

    Brad

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    I also don't understand whats going on. If there is no one in the car I wouldn't agree to do that, let the utility handle it.

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    Appears there is a time lapse between the two pictures

    Just might be a person in the car in the top picture

  13. #13
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    This appears to be several years ago (based on the apparatus shown in the photo) at a department that a couple of my buddies work for. I'll shoot them an e-mail and see if I can get the goods on this.
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