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Thread: Hey let's see if we can get a fire topic to go more than 5 posts befoe we let it die!

  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by captnjak View Post
    Application of water from the exterior has nothing to do with controlling flowpaths via ventilation practices. Too many guys think the UL/NIST research was about blitz attack. Others think it's only about door control. These are minor parts of the picture. The lessons learned from the research are more about the negative effect of air intake to a ventilation limited fire via ANY opening we may make. And it's about what happens in the fire area AND adjacent areas when this happens. It's also about the effects of water when applied to areas other than the area of fire origin. There is a ton of information. No one will understand it all by reading a forum on the internet or a magazine article.
    I took a 6 hour class at our State Fire School last weekend that was essentially a case study of the Governor's Island studies. There is so much information to sort through from that study it could have easily been a 12 hour class. Captnjack is right on the money, you can't understand it by just reading a little here and there. There is so much info there and a lot of the results were not quite what they were expecting.

    My department has been doing a lot of things like door control, vent path control, and transitional attack for years. For us these things were done because we have very limited manpower and we figured out that it worked. It was nice to get some of the science behind why it works. Now I'm not saying that these are the only tactics we use, they are just "tools in the toolbox" for us and, in my opinion, the more tools you have the better.


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    Quote Originally Posted by captnjak View Post
    Door control should not be looked upon as minor.

    You say we should be aware of changing conditions. I assume you refer to deteriorating conditions. YesI agree, but I would take it a step further. How about we be aware of changing conditions and also be aware of things we can do to stop things from deteriorating. Most certainly, that was one of my points.

    Do you agree that venting every window in a structure can be counterproductive? Of course.If you do, then you should agree that improper venting via doors can also be unproductive.

    I don't see how door control prevents you from considering transitional attack, VES, rescue, exposures, manpower, etc. Door control could make all of those things safer and easier.
    I would put door control last on that list. All those other things are more likely to be viable scenarios and more likely to influence the tactics used. Door control in my opinion is going to require a "perfect storm" of manpower, conditions, and training. And even with the manpower, many fires are not going to require door control. You can be ready for it if you need to, but I don't see where it will be needed or possible all that often, at least in this area. It's in my toolbox, at the back of a drawer...

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnsb View Post
    I would put door control last on that list. All those other things are more likely to be viable scenarios and more likely to influence the tactics used. Door control in my opinion is going to require a "perfect storm" of manpower, conditions, and training. And even with the manpower, many fires are not going to require door control. You can be ready for it if you need to, but I don't see where it will be needed or possible all that often, at least in this area. It's in my toolbox, at the back of a drawer...
    Put it where ever you wish. But the truth is many times excuses are far easier than actually embracing new and perhaps lifesaving procedures in the fire service.
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    Quote Originally Posted by johnsb View Post
    The open space of the average front door with an 1 3/4" line going in will be in the neighborhood of 2 square feet. That's a lot of space for air to enter, even with door control. My goal is to put wet stuff on the red stuff. If that involves a transitional attack, fine. But if I'm that worried that I'm going to get caught in a jet of fire just because the door behind me is open, it's time to go defensive and use other tactics until we can reenter. If it's that volatile inside, nobody is likely to still be alive. You do what works for you, but around here I just don't see that scenario playing out knowing what the fire charactaristics are of the buildings here.
    Using your number of 2 square feet of opening with the door pulled back instead of around 20 square feet of opening with the door wide open is a big difference. Also if on your 360 walk around you notice several windows open or the fire has vented itself, the door control and the flow path is less of a issue because the flow path is already there. The use of door control is when you find no or a couple of open windows and the fire has not yet vented itself.

    Our VES now includes flow control. Vent the room, enter the room, close the door, and then search.
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    Quote Originally Posted by johnsb View Post
    I would put door control last on that list. All those other things are more likely to be viable scenarios and more likely to influence the tactics used. Door control in my opinion is going to require a "perfect storm" of manpower, conditions, and training. And even with the manpower, many fires are not going to require door control. You can be ready for it if you need to, but I don't see where it will be needed or possible all that often, at least in this area. It's in my toolbox, at the back of a drawer...
    You've made reference to your area several times. I'd love to know how the fires and buildings are so drastically different in your area. This is all about fire behavior. Fires don't know what town they're in.

    Control of the flowpath only really comes into play when we arrive at ventilation limited fires. With modern synthetic contents and tighter building envelopes, including windows that don't easily fail on their own, it is common for fire to be in that stage by the time we arrive. Uncontrolled ventilation is a bad tactic under these conditions. Period. Doesn't matter if it's a door or a window.

    It really doesn't require a perfect storm of manpower, conditions and training. How hard is it to close the door behind you if you enter ahead of a hoseline for search? How hard is it to keep the door at least partially closed while stretching/advancing line. I admit that it is often possible to ignore door control once the charged line is moving in. You'll likely get water to begin cooling before any flashover occurs. Complex floorplans or hoarding conditions will slow advance and make the need for door control more likely. As would larger floor areas and accompanying longer stretch.

    Having someone at the entrance door provides for overall monitoring of the area, allows for assistance feeding hose, and makes it possible to assist interior members getting back out in case withdrawal is called for. Many departments probably have SOP's that call for a firefighter in the door area anyway. Might as well control ventilation while he/she is there.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rm1524 View Post
    Our VES now includes flow control. Vent the room, enter the room, close the door, and then search.
    Interesting....closing the door was always in ours.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42 View Post
    Interesting....closing the door was always in ours.
    And ours too. Unfortunately I think that some people didn't understand that thus the renaming of VES some places to VEIS. Vent, Enter, ISOLATE, search. Spelling out clearly closing the door as part of the VES operation
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42 View Post
    Interesting....closing the door was always in ours.
    It was ours as well, but it was on the way by the door. If it was open check the hallway for a victim, if closed check for heat and if cool open, check hallway and close, if hot leave it closed. Now making sure the door is closed is first priority.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rm1524 View Post
    It was ours as well, but it was on the way by the door. If it was open check the hallway for a victim, if closed check for heat and if cool open, check hallway and close, if hot leave it closed. Now making sure the door is closed is first priority.
    Perfect example of a minor change in tactics that significantly controls flowpath. No need for major training program, equipment purchases, added staffing, etc.
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    Quote Originally Posted by captnjak View Post
    Perfect example of a minor change in tactics that significantly controls flowpath. No need for major training program, equipment purchases, added staffing, etc.
    Damn it! There you go speaking logically again...
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    Here is the biggest issue I have:

    In 25 years of being involved in the fire service, I have seen numerous times, a fire stream trained into a window that had fire coming out of it only to see fire pop out an opposite window or door 30 seconds.

    I have been coming down the hall and had a sudden on rush of flames and temperatures elevate rapidly only to find out someone tried to knock down from the outside because they didn't think we were getting there fast enough..

    Now some scientists come along and say that technically you can't push fire. I call BS. If you have a limited amount of fire - like in a single room, you may not push it much, but fire beyond that room will be affected by the air that goes in along with the fire and what doesn't go out will intensify. The natural "flow path" is out the window that you are not spraying water in.

    Ever heard that it is scientifically impossible for a bumblebee to fly? Google that one and be amazed the next time you see a bee flying around that hasn't yet heard it should not be able to fly.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MemphisE34a View Post
    Here is the biggest issue I have:

    In 25 years of being involved in the fire service, I have seen numerous times, a fire stream trained into a window that had fire coming out of it only to see fire pop out an opposite window or door 30 seconds.

    I have been coming down the hall and had a sudden on rush of flames and temperatures elevate rapidly only to find out someone tried to knock down from the outside because they didn't think we were getting there fast enough..

    Now some scientists come along and say that technically you can't push fire. I call BS. If you have a limited amount of fire - like in a single room, you may not push it much, but fire beyond that room will be affected by the air that goes in along with the fire and what doesn't go out will intensify. The natural "flow path" is out the window that you are not spraying water in.

    Ever heard that it is scientifically impossible for a bumblebee to fly? Google that one and be amazed the next time you see a bee flying around that hasn't yet heard it should not be able to fly.
    So you've seen fire out one window and then out another window shortly after a stream operated into the window? That does not tell us that the fire was pushed by the stream. It onlty tells us that fire vented out another window. Nothing happens exclusive of other acts. If someone ran around the house and broke all the windows, the fire may have been heading toward that opening anyway. Or maybe the stream and it's accompanying air movement created an obstacle to air movement out the original window. So what did the fire do? It found a new flowpath.

    Your example of the hallway where you had a rapid increase in fire intensity could also just be normal fire behavior. With the window and door open, the fire had it's flowpath. It was either going out the window or down the hallway and out the door you entered through. Again, maybe the stream at the window put enough of an obstacle in the fire's path to make it vent in your direction instead.

    I can't say for sure. But I don't think you can say for sure that the only explanation for these events is a stream pushing fire.

    What I can say for sure is that during the FDNY/NIST/UL tests on Governor's Island, water was applied to fires from the exterior and from one interior area to another. In all tests, when water was applied, temperatures dropped THROUGHOUT THE STRUCTURE. There was not a single instance where fire intensified or temperatures increased opposite the stream. The test structure allowed for fire to be pushed as it was "railroad flat" or "shotgun style" room layout. But fire was never pushed. Thermocouplings were placed at one foot intervals from floor to ceiling in every room and at top and bottom of stairs. If fire was being pushed, it would have registered.

    The tests were not designed to prove some scientists point about pushing fire. The part about pushing fire was merely a surprise byproduct of the ventilation tactics at the heart of the tests.

    I don't much care about bumblebees. We all know they can fly because we've all seen them fly. There can be no other explanation other than that they can indeed fly. Your seeing fire out one window and then another could have multiple explanations. Pushing fire is not automatically the one and only.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MemphisE34a View Post
    Here is the biggest issue I have:

    In 25 years of being involved in the fire service, I have seen numerous times, a fire stream trained into a window that had fire coming out of it only to see fire pop out an opposite window or door 30 seconds.

    I have been coming down the hall and had a sudden on rush of flames and temperatures elevate rapidly only to find out someone tried to knock down from the outside because they didn't think we were getting there fast enough..

    Now some scientists come along and say that technically you can't push fire. I call BS. If you have a limited amount of fire - like in a single room, you may not push it much, but fire beyond that room will be affected by the air that goes in along with the fire and what doesn't go out will intensify. The natural "flow path" is out the window that you are not spraying water in.

    Ever heard that it is scientifically impossible for a bumblebee to fly? Google that one and be amazed the next time you see a bee flying around that hasn't yet heard it should not be able to fly.
    First of all, the use of exterior streams onto interior crews is not what this is about anyways. the exterior hit is designed to cool the overall atmosphere to lessen or even eliminate the possibility of flashover and to make the area easier to advance into.

    Secondly, I have said for a good part of my career anyone operating a hoseline onto interior crews from the exterior during an offensive interior attack should get their face introduced to the broad side of a flat head axe. I have been there felt that and the pi ssed offness that I felt was so high it wasn't even readable on the scale any longer.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MemphisE34a View Post
    Here is the biggest issue I have:

    In 25 years of being involved in the fire service, I have seen numerous times, a fire stream trained into a window that had fire coming out of it only to see fire pop out an opposite window or door 30 seconds.

    I have been coming down the hall and had a sudden on rush of flames and temperatures elevate rapidly only to find out someone tried to knock down from the outside because they didn't think we were getting there fast enough..

    Now some scientists come along and say that technically you can't push fire. I call BS. If you have a limited amount of fire - like in a single room, you may not push it much, but fire beyond that room will be affected by the air that goes in along with the fire and what doesn't go out will intensify. The natural "flow path" is out the window that you are not spraying water in.

    Ever heard that it is scientifically impossible for a bumblebee to fly? Google that one and be amazed the next time you see a bee flying around that hasn't yet heard it should not be able to fly.
    I have been monitoring this thread and there is certainly some good information going around here. First of all, let me say that the FDNY/NIST testing information is another great tool to have in the toolbox. It is about time someone does some scientific testing on how we fight fires. It is also about time that we change our thinking of how we fight them.

    What you are saying is that you have felt the heat of someone blasting a hose stream in a window when you were on the inside. This isn't "pushing fire" but rather that stream disturbs the thermal balance in the room and therefore "pushes" the heat and steam down to your level. I have had that happen to me on a few occasions and like Fyredup says, you can't fathom the ******ed off-ness that I felt and let that person know about it too!!

    I also have been in the fire service for 24 years now and this "new" information from NIST goes against everything I was taught over the years and it was hard to wrap my head around it. When I first started I was told to direct my stream into the window that fire was coming out of to knock it down and then go in and put the rest out. Then they said no, don't do that, go inside and get it. Go from the unburned to the burned side so you don't "push" it through the house. This "pushing" theory was just that, a theory that became a common thought over the years. If you notice in the videos, when they blasted the hose into the window it did disturb the air currents inside the structure but the science of it is that it cooled it down. We didn't know that before. Now we know.

    I think we should take this new information and adjust our tactics, at least our thoughts and understanding of why we do things. We shouldn't do things just because "that's how we always have done it that way"...rather we use that understanding to our advantage. It's not the silver bullet as mentioned before. Just another tool in the toolbox.
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    Bottom line, and it don't take a NIST study to figure this out; fire is looking for 2 things oxygen and fuel. As far as pushing fire, well it's much the same theory of sucking-you don't "suck" something up, you create a low pressure area and atmospheric pressure "pushes" the fluid into that area.
    Now lets put that into the context of a fire, if you do have fire blowing out of a window, it's a good chance it's gone beyond the incipient phase. So here you come and decide to blow water into that window. Unless you get right to the seat, that fire is going to do it's best to find another oxygen source. That being another window, and open door, hell even an open damper on a fireplace. Sounds like a very plausible reason for fire to spread throughout. So with that in mind, it's just more than your window and the flow path it creates that needs to be taken in account. So the question that needs to be answered-can you control all those variables?
    As far as the study saying it reduced temps everywhere in the structure, ok. But why do we use water? Because it expands greatly displacing the oxygen-so tell me how that's good for a victim?
    As far as these studies, yes I read them and try to place those results into my experience and district. Well to be honest, they don't fit neatly most of the time. Unfortunately I'm not in a nice bedroom community. I'm in the middle of a fairly depressed area-99% balloon frame construction, zero lot lines, active transient housing (many with ESL), illegal apts., illegal structural modifications, illegal bedrooms in basements with no windows, owner modified heat ducts, and the list goes on. So yes, I read them, but like many have said, it's another tool and a little more knowledge to assist. But to blindly follow it without a real world comparison to what your community has to offer is setting yourself up for disaster.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dickey View Post
    I have been monitoring this thread and there is certainly some good information going around here. First of all, let me say that the FDNY/NIST testing information is another great tool to have in the toolbox. It is about time someone does some scientific testing on how we fight fires. It is also about time that we change our thinking of how we fight them.

    What you are saying is that you have felt the heat of someone blasting a hose stream in a window when you were on the inside. This isn't "pushing fire" but rather that stream disturbs the thermal balance in the room and therefore "pushes" the heat and steam down to your level. I have had that happen to me on a few occasions and like Fyredup says, you can't fathom the ******ed off-ness that I felt and let that person know about it too!!

    I also have been in the fire service for 24 years now and this "new" information from NIST goes against everything I was taught over the years and it was hard to wrap my head around it. When I first started I was told to direct my stream into the window that fire was coming out of to knock it down and then go in and put the rest out. Then they said no, don't do that, go inside and get it. Go from the unburned to the burned side so you don't "push" it through the house. This "pushing" theory was just that, a theory that became a common thought over the years. If you notice in the videos, when they blasted the hose into the window it did disturb the air currents inside the structure but the science of it is that it cooled it down. We didn't know that before. Now we know.

    I think we should take this new information and adjust our tactics, at least our thoughts and understanding of why we do things. We shouldn't do things just because "that's how we always have done it that way"...rather we use that understanding to our advantage. It's not the silver bullet as mentioned before. Just another tool in the toolbox.
    I have long suspected that this "pushing fire" theory was invented long ago by a guy or guys who had steam pushed into their faces. Picture a firefighter entering a house or apartment through a window for search. He has no hood, or SCBA or bunker gear. The line is opened up. Steam is created. It expands and is pushed ahead of the line because the stream does create air movement (no one is denying this). That firefighter suddenly feels heat that he didn't feel before because it was dry heat stratified at the ceiling level. He concludes that fire was pushed at him.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SPFDRum View Post
    Bottom line, and it don't take a NIST study to figure this out; fire is looking for 2 things oxygen and fuel. As far as pushing fire, well it's much the same theory of sucking-you don't "suck" something up, you create a low pressure area and atmospheric pressure "pushes" the fluid into that area.
    Now lets put that into the context of a fire, if you do have fire blowing out of a window, it's a good chance it's gone beyond the incipient phase. So here you come and decide to blow water into that window. Unless you get right to the seat, that fire is going to do it's best to find another oxygen source. That being another window, and open door, hell even an open damper on a fireplace. Sounds like a very plausible reason for fire to spread throughout. So with that in mind, it's just more than your window and the flow path it creates that needs to be taken in account. So the question that needs to be answered-can you control all those variables?
    As far as the study saying it reduced temps everywhere in the structure, ok. But why do we use water? Because it expands greatly displacing the oxygen-so tell me how that's good for a victim?
    As far as these studies, yes I read them and try to place those results into my experience and district. Well to be honest, they don't fit neatly most of the time. Unfortunately I'm not in a nice bedroom community. I'm in the middle of a fairly depressed area-99% balloon frame construction, zero lot lines, active transient housing (many with ESL), illegal apts., illegal structural modifications, illegal bedrooms in basements with no windows, owner modified heat ducts, and the list goes on. So yes, I read them, but like many have said, it's another tool and a little more knowledge to assist. But to blindly follow it without a real world comparison to what your community has to offer is setting yourself up for disaster.
    Your response area sounds a lot like some of mine. I also have ****ty attached frame MD's. You said yourself that fires need air. Type of structure doesn't matter. There may be fewer openings due to attached construction making for less windows. If you enter through a door and chock that door open, you now have created a flow path. Fresh air can be drawn in at bottom of door opening and hot air vented out the top of the opening. A ventilation limited fire could light up and blow right out the entrance door. Rapid application of water obviously would prevent this. The problem would be when a team enters for search ahead of a line being in place. They could end up in a bad situation that could have been prevented simply by controlling the entrance door until line was in place.

    If a fire can be confined behind a closed door while known victims are removed from the area, I'm all for it. Otherwise, there is really no way around putting water on the high heat. Victims in an area open to the fire have most likely ran short of oxygen long beforewe open a line up. Quick removal and medical treatment is the best answer either way.

    Do you advocate holding off on extinguishment until all searches have been conducted and all rescues completed? Probably not. So steam generation is a necessary evil. Flow path control prior to water application has little to do with it. Additionally, properly timed horizontal ventilation ahead of the line is still a good tactic for venting steam. No one is saying all ventilation must be done away with.

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    Quote Originally Posted by captnjak View Post
    I have long suspected that this "pushing fire" theory was invented long ago by a guy or guys who had steam pushed into their faces. ...
    Probably by a department that was using a fog pattern through the window as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by captnjak View Post
    You've made reference to your area several times. I'd love to know how the fires and buildings are so drastically different in your area. Very few of the fires I've been on in this area could be considered vent limited due to whatever factors that happened to be present at that fire. I kinda made that point several times that certain situations have to be present...This is all about fire behavior. Fires don't know what town they're in.

    Control of the flowpath only really comes into play when we arrive at ventilation limited fires. With modern synthetic contents and tighter building envelopes, including windows that don't easily fail on their own, it is common for fire to be in that stage by the time we arrive. Uncontrolled ventilation is a bad tactic under these conditions. I never said it wasn't, nor did I ever call for uncoordinated ventilation.Period. Doesn't matter if it's a door or a window.

    It really doesn't require a perfect storm of manpower, conditions and training. How hard is it to close the door behind you if you enter ahead of a hoseline for search? Nowhere did I talk about closing (or not closing) a door during a search ahead of a hoseline. I addressed the door the hoseline was going in, PERIOD.How hard is it to keep the door at least partially closed while stretching/advancing line. With a 3 man crew? Kinda hard. Especially when you have to go to the second floor.I admit that it is often possible to ignore door control once the charged line is moving in. You'll likely get water to begin cooling before any flashover occurs. Complex floorplans or hoarding conditions will slow advance and make the need for door control more likely. As would larger floor areas and accompanying longer stretch.

    Having someone at the entrance door provides for overall monitoring of the area, allows for assistance feeding hose, and makes it possible to assist interior members getting back out in case withdrawal is called for. Many departments probably have SOP's that call for a firefighter in the door area anyway. Might as well control ventilation while he/she is there.And that's nice IF you have the manpower.
    I love how you read more into my posts than what's there. Flow path is what is important, we can generally figure how that will be managed, or if it's already established on size up. I'm generally going to do my best not to be in it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    Put it where ever you wish. But the truth is many times excuses are far easier than actually embracing new and perhaps lifesaving procedures in the fire service.
    What your excuse for poor reading comprehension?

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