1. #1
    Junior Member

    Join Date
    Aug 2002

    Unhappy pumper- enclosed passanger compartment pros/cons

    we currently have 2 seater pumper trucks, the passangers/firefighters who don gear sit backwards in a none enclosed compartment. We are fighting the city on the pros/cons of enclosed cab.. 4/5 man cabs... our biggest problems are cold weather, lack of communication, and safety... I'm sure there is more... let me know
    thanx... your fellow firefighter

  2. #2
    Junior Member

    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Fort Smith, NWT


    The enclosed cab is definitely the way to go. We replaced our open pumphouse design with an enclosed pumphouse and I don't think you could ever get us to go back (we have a second pumper with an open pumphouse but it is slated for replacement with an enclosed cab in the next couple of years. There are many advantages I can think of:

    1) SAFETY: We have had a few instances where we have almost lost people off of the open cab. It is very difficult to safely suit up while going around turns and trying to keep yourself and all of your gear in the truck.

    2) Gear: We have been lucky enough not to loose a person overboard, but we have lost helmets, gloves, radios etc....Whats the point of suiting up in BA if you radio or helmet is halfway between the hall and the fire call? (or destroyed underneath the wheels, which has happened to us as well).

    3) CLIMATE: We often have calls in nasty weather. Our temps range from -40 Celcius to +35 Celcius (not to mention that if the weather is nice then the mosquitos will also provide quite a distraction!
    The enclosed cab protects equipment and gives FFs a change to recover from the elements (thawing out and defogging masks comes to mind).

    4) Operating Environment: Not only is it climate controlled, but it can also cut out a lot of noise and distractions so that our pumper operator can concentrate at the tasks at hand (BA control, radio operations, and of course the making of water . Actually this is a plus while responding as well as it is easier for the IA and hydrant crews to communicate and plan their response before arriving on scene.

    5) People mover: The days of riding beaver tails are gone, (it was fun though . The extra room and security of the enclosed cab means you can move more people to the scene. Our pumper rolls with the first 5/6 qualified FFs (Driver/operator and command up front, 2 IA and 2 Hydrant in the back) into the hall and our rescue unit hangs a couple of minutes to pickup the slower arrivals. If you use an open cab design is there still room to move a hydrant crew with pumper 1? I know our older pumper would be a little to crowded to do that safely.

  3. #3
    Forum Member
    Bones42's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Pt. Beach, NJ


    ace2b - not sure, but I think current NFPA standards require seated, seatbelted, and enclosed. Might want to do some searching on the NFPA web site.

  4. #4
    Forum Member
    SCOOBY14B's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2001

    Default enclosed cabs

    Yes...enclosed cab apparatus is required by NFPA.

  5. #5
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    May 2000
    Wheaton IL


    Just as a sidenote, I know we all do it but you really shouldn't be getting dressed enroute, enclosed cab or not. You should be seated with seatbelt in place. The enclosed cab gives you a false sence of security, I've had the door open on our E-One while enroute to a call. If I were standing, getting dressed, I could have easily fallen out.

    When you get your enclosed cab don't forget the headsets and AC. Keep in mind how big the space is in the jumpseat area. Some of our vertically challenged members have problems getting their airpacks on in the cab.

  6. #6
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    NorthEast Paid on Call


    If you're considering a new truck I don't think you'll find an open cab. Kind of narrows down the debate.

    Just out of curiosity what are the cons of closed cabs? I can't think of any.

  7. #7
    Forum Member
    FFWALT's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2000


    In the summer the open jumpseats always seem to give you a better view of traffic, if you know what I mean.
    Aside from this lone point and of course Tradition, enclosed cabs are the way to go.
    Train like you want to fight.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Jun 2002

    Default Enclosed cab

    Through the efforts of the those that have seen the worst in fire apparatus design, the fully enclosed cabs were brought to NFPA mandated status. Manufacturers have seen fit to follow mandate. If you desire an open cab today, you will have to look long and hard. I would be surprised to hear that any current class A builder would even discuss the possibility of an open rear seat area.

    However, even with the advent of the enclosed cab, firefighters are falling out of cabs. Standing enroute to calls. Donning SCBA enroute. You can lead them to water but some refuse to drink. Oh, well, a little spoon fed knowledge at a time. Realistically, most have gotten the message and the death rate from falling out of apparatus is down from years ago. Remember when riding on tailboards was mandated to end. It was not until the insurance companies refused to insure the apparatus and NFPA mandated personnel off the tailboard that it came to an end.

    Whether you buy into NFPA or not, when on the witness stand because of an injury, the question will be asked. "Do purchase and maintain your fire apparatus to the latest recognized industry standards? Yes. What is the recognized industry standard. NFPA. Is your rig built to those standards?" If you cannot answer yes, the payout goes way up. Some self insured agencies pick and choose what they feel are the best and most sensible items from NFPA and drop those that do not fit their usage. FDNY is one that states that their apparatus are not to be built to strict NFPA standards. They usually exceed the standard.

    I hope some of this helps. We stopped the tailboard rider use in 1975 and went fully enclosed in 1990. No regrets. Today the cabs are fully enclosed, air conditioned, and quiet. With A/C and heaters the units now meet standards for rehab units. Another new standard met with existing units.

    Respectfully submitted,

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