1. #1
    Firehouse.com Editor

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    Mar 2009

    Default Apparatus for blocking on limited access roadways

    In the last few weeks, I have seen a number of photos showing emergency vehicles blocking the scene on expressways, highways or freeways. The photos have included everything from a utility truck to a ladder truck to a tanker or even a dedicated "highway blocker" vehicle with the water-filled safety barriers.

    What does your department send to block roadways and what are the pros and cons of one vehicle over the other.


  2. #2
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    EastKyFF's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Nippa, KY


    We don't have as many apparatus to choose from as many departments. We own 3 pumpers, 1 tanker, a light rescue, a utility pickup, and an ambulance that has been converted to a command post.

    We cover ten miles of a busy 4-lane highway. If we need apparatus for scene blocking, we typically respond with whatever isn't committed to the actual response. For example, a vehicle fire will probably get two engines, and then we can block with the tanker.

    This is a major issue for us now that we have experienced an LODD in the county, when Asst. Chief Christa Burchett was struck by a coal truck on icy roads while working an MVC. In addition to blocking with vehicles, we're attentive to wearing safety vests and utilizing cones and electronic flares for traffic management.
    I am more than just a serious basketball fan. I am a life-long addict. I was addicted from birth, in fact, because I was born in Kentucky.
    ― Hunter S. Thompson

  3. #3
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    Join Date
    Nov 2002


    Get the cops and the highway dept. out there as soon as you can is another option.

  4. #4
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    MemphisE34a's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Memphis, TN - USA


    Dedicated company to block. Full size apparatus- either engine or truck.
    cell #901-494-9437

    Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.

    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

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