1. #1
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Hey, what do you say we start specking firefighter friendly apparatus. I know it's tough because your neighbor just got something bigger or longer than you. I know you can resist, just say NO! These fire engines that people spec out are getting out of hand, seems MOST of them now are so high you need a step ladder to pull the crosslay off. Where's the common sense ? See if you can spec out something smaller so that ff's don't have to reach or CLIMB to get essential items such as hose or ladders. If you want to see a piece of firefighter friendly apparatus go to a city fire department. Most of the apparatus is short and low to the ground so you can get the equipment off safely and easily. Does anyone out there see things the way I do or am I just getting shorter?

  2. #2
    Firehouse.com Guest


    I'd say this department has the simplest and firefighter friendliest apparatus. Plus every rig is exactly the same. It is much higher tech thanmost but BUTT simple.

  3. #3
    Firehouse.com Guest


    exactly! crosslays you can pull from down low & charge at their bed (less on the pump panel) low main hosebeds, all fittings kept at their place of use, squirrel tail suctions, what about a water thief on one of the 2" dis. on each side and get rid of the stupid crosslays altogether and just keep donut rolled atack lines in the running boards ? things like this are not "normal" but may work

  4. #4
    Firehouse.com Guest


    City departments do usually have low hose beds and short trucks, but there is one important reason why that some more rural departments can't deal with. Most city pumpers carry only 500 or maybe 750 gallons of water and minimal equipment. They have fully hydranted districts and rescues or truck companies to bring the specialized rescue equipment. Big tanks mean taller trucks.

    However, as is apparent with the Rattlesnake trucks, this can be dealt with. Some ideas are "L" tanks (watch the front axle weight) or crosslays on a seperate compartment module ahead of a side mount pump enclosure or even accross the front bumper (two full width lays, not hose wells keeps the hose undercontrol, although Rattlesnake's front bumper rolls are good too.)

    Rear pumpers are good at keeping trucks shorter in length and when spec'd right can give a low hose bed. Unfortunately, many rescue pumpers of this style put rescue first and pumper second, so compartmentation is a higher priority than hose bed height.

    The basic point is that in order to get better hose access height, you'll probably have to compromise on something else. However, ease of operation and firefighter safety should always be the highest priority.

  5. #5
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Here are a few other ideas -- How about easy access, in and out? check out Spartan's "chicago grab bars" in the rear seats, you can put your hand on the bar when still in the seat and maintain contact with the same bar all the way down to the street. Ground lighting, all around the truck! that comes on automatically, not just with the door opening. check out the cut-out tank offered by UPF which allows storage of 28ft,14 ft roof and scuttle ladders accessible from the rear of the pumper, at shoulder height while standing on the ground! No climbing, no lifting heavy ladders from above shoulder height. Use LARGE numbers (1" or more) with contrast (light on dark, or dark on light) at each discharge and control valve. Its a lot easier to hear somone say "my line is on port four (while holding up 4 fingers) that to tell me its on purple or violet or was that pink? (especially if your pump operator happens to be color blind)and a lot easier to see at night. Compartments with roll-out trays make getting tools & equipment safer and easier. These are just a few ideas, I'm sure there are more. Maybe one of the most important ideas is to talk to the truck operators when we spec a new unit and LISTEN to what their needs are.

  6. #6
    Firehouse.com Guest


    I love the idea of having the attack lines coming off the rear step. If you have a pumper with a low hose bed, you can get the hand lines real low. I found that cross-lays can be to high and cumbersome and get in the way of the pump operator. Also handlines coming off the front bumper is a good idea. As you can see I like everything as low as possible. Less of a pain in pulling lines if everything is low and accessible. Let's try and make the wheel base short, around 175 to 185. This allows for better maneuverability.

    [This message has been edited by Firefighter194 (edited 05-06-2001).]

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