1. #1
    neo
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    Question overhaul and b/a useage

    i'm looking for a guideline for breathing apparatus useage during overhaul...my point is that if it's hot, it's still off-gasing and i want protection...at what point would there be a determination that a b/a is not needed...any ideas or departments with s.o.g.'s for overhaul and b/a useage in particular would be greatly appreciated.

    stay safe<br /> <img src="confused.gif" border="0">

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    Our guidelines require atmospheric monitoring prior to doffing SCBA's. Once the atmosphere is cleared (no longer IDLH), the companies can work without their B/A's.

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    That is a tough one. IF you monitor for percent of 02 you can be decieved. If you look for CO then you wont take into account the other toxic chemicals that are present in the burn area. It would take an entire chemical spectrographic exam to say when you can safely take off your SCBA. Leave it on during Overhaul and investigation. Its the safe way to go.

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    how many spare bottles does your rig contain to be able to work a fire, then overhaul etc with a pack on ???
    " truck till the casket drops "

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    My views and opinions do not represent the views and standards of the Department or Company that I belong to.

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    We use a level of 35ppm CO, greater than this scba is on. 35ppm is the OSHA twa for 8 hours. BC has the option to lower the limit if crews have had several fires that tour. The O2, hydrogen sulfide and explosion levels are also taken into account.

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    We continue to use SCBA *at least* until CO levels are below 35ppm. It's not the end all, be all of all gasses, but it does help indicate when an atmosphere is returning to "normal."

    (35ppm is the OSHA requirement for workers working 8 hour shifts in that environment, with a maximum peak of 200ppm -- that gives us a good margin from the IDLH levels of 1500ppm)

    Then discretion comes into whether SCBA is removed or not. Overhauling someone's wood shed is one thing, overhauling a roll-on, roll-off dumpster is another.

    BTW, our big gas-powered PPV fan *consitently* produces an atmosphere of 42ppm of CO -- so if it's running, it's a SCBA environment. I like to see it used during (if appropriate) and especially after knock down to clear the bulk of the smoke, steam, and gasses out -- then switch to our small gas fan or preferably the electric PPV to clear out the CO!
    IACOJ Canine Officer
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    /It has been my experience that if PPV causes an increase in CO levels you do not have a big enough opening in the structure. Not enough opening for the air to escape will cause a bottleneck in the airflow and the CO level will go up. Try opening some more windows or a door. A smaller fan will work too.

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    Is heat a good judge? I have long thought that you can still have deadly gases in the building even if it feels cool enough. I think that the best way when in doubt is to be on air you know is good.
    I would...but no!

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    Default CO

    The reason that we have found as to why the CO levels increase when using PPV is that the exhaust is right behind the fan for intake. so the fan in essence pushes all the CO from the fan's exhaust into the house. you can order an extension to place over the exhaust, we have it on a couple trucks but not all.

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    Lightbulb

    If you look at a lot of the injuries on the fireground, most of them occur during the overhaul stage of the fire. As a result, the company that I am with stated that SCBA will be worn in all aspects of the fire. Just my personal input!

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    Even during over haul you should use your scba. Super heated gases will cool down and decend to your level. Not just CO but what ever else is present. You got the scba USE THEM! You can control PPV so as not to be working in its exhaust fumes by controlling what ventilation points to direct the gases away from you and not to you.
    Just because there is no more smoke doesn't make it a safe atmosphere.
    Some days yer the fire hydrant and some days yer the dog.

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    Plainly stated"LEAVE THEM ON", it's not gonna hurt you to stay on air, so why take the chance? If you get tired from wearing it go to rehab and get another crew, if personnel is a problem, take a break anyway; after all the fire is pretty much out ,.....right?
    Capt. Walker

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    I agree with the Capt. Our guidelines are that we wear our SCBA's during overhaul. I think the capt. pretty much sums it up.

    I have seen our Chief "smoke up" to entire a building after overhaul to start is fire inspection. Even the next day, the chief and fire inspector where wearing breathing regulators while inside, and had SCBAs close. You never know what kind of toxics are going to be floating around. Read your IFSTA vol 4, (chapter 2 I think, PPE) gives you all sorts of examples of chemicals given off... Not just Carbonmonoxide or carbondioxide, hydrochloric acid, Hydrogen Cyanide, etc etc. I know I want to avoid any number of those things, and all the other toxins I canít even pronounce, let alone spell.
    "No one ever called the Fire Department for doing something smart..."

  14. #14
    IACOJ BOD
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    Enough air to fill a BA set $ 0.00

    Spare BA Bottles $ 0.00

    One set of FF Lungs Priceless.

    Your question was?????

  15. #15
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    My old department used to monitor the air and if the CO was less than 35 ppm you could dispense with the SCBA.. Requires constant monitoring to insure levels stay below.
    09-11 .. 343 "All Gave Some..Some Gave ALL" God Bless..R.I.P.
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    IACOJ Minister of Southern Comfort
    "Purple Hydrant" Recipient (3 Times)
    BMI Investigator
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    The comments, opinions, and positions expressed here are mine. They are expressed respectfully, in the spirit of safety and progress. They do not reflect the opinions or positions of my employer or my department.

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