Why register? ...To Enhance Your Experience
+ Reply to Thread
Page 2 of 3 FirstFirst 123 LastLast
Results 21 to 40 of 56
  1. #21
    Senior Member Dalmatian90's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Posts
    3,120

    Default

    The probies gotta do what they're taught to do!

    All areas are different, and part of the fun(?) of discussing tactics are how everyone does it differently, or slight variations.

    2-1/2 gallon cans are great -- in NYC. But we also have to remember no one else in the U.S. and few places in the world run at the staffing levels and density of companies as FDNY. 4-5 man engines and 6 man trucks and what, about 1 square mile per station on average? Was reading a National Geographic article last night that just casually mentioned a that there was two fire stations within the 1/2 square mile neighborhood. If your on a six man truck company, with plenty of 5 man engines and more 6 man trucks coming to your sign in the next few minutes, and you gotta get to a fire on the sixth floor of a big apartment building taking a can to help make a quick punch to be able to gain control of a door isn't a bad option. Now cans certainly have a place in other communities, but you gotta realize why your taking it with you and how it fits your department and buildings -- hopefully you're not taking it since FDNY does and a bunch of instructors at FDIC were copying them.

    If your in a situation with two 3 man companies are gonna be working the two-story single family residence alone for awhile, taking a line with the "search" team is a different proposition. The attack team is hopefully headed for the fire, and the "search" team may very well be taking a line to the floor above and want to be able to deal with what they find, like flames extending in a balloon frame -- endangering not only them but the attack crew below.

    There's very few "tactics" that are wrong. Most of the time when things go bad we're either not doing a set of tactics together like they should be done, or we're mixing and matching things (like using PPV while also having guys go through windows doing VES). The best classes I've taken have been taught by FDNY officers, but what I learn there isn't neccessarily something that will work back in my home district -- we don't have the constistency in the quality or numbers of staff as FDNY, and many other factors (like response times, building design, water supply, or even the life hazard to name a few). Doesn't mean we're a worse department than FDNY, just we have conditions that mean we have to do things differently. What's effective in your area is a better measure of how good your department is than whose tactics you use.

    We can all learn from each other, and try out new things in a reasoned way and see what works better in our areas.

    We can all go out a play. Play is a good thing. Play doesn't mean winging things and flying by the seat of our pants -- sit down and think out what you're gonna do, what's the safety issues, and let the troops now you're going out to experiment and try X, Y, and Z today and see what happens. If some of the stuff you play with works out, then you can make a formal training session on it, and then you can have drills to build profeciency on it. If some of the stuff just doesn't seem to fit, hey, you were just playing with the idea so abandon it.

    A lot of times in the fire service we adopt mantras that Instructors like to say, and people never really question them. Instead of saying you need a minimum of 95gpm or 125gpm or 150gpm or whatever to make an initial attack, we got lazy and said you need an 1.75" line minimum. Now a long 1.75" line that's being underpumped delivers a lot less water than a 1" line pumped hard...but somehow we have tried to simply rates of delivery and hydraulics down to, "always pull at least an 1.75" and unfortunately the background of "so you can deliver at least xx gpm at xx psi" is lost.

    In the end, it's up to use to explain to our probies how and why we do things the way we do in our own areas.


  2. #22
    MembersZone Subscriber CFD Hazards's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Cranston, RI, USA
    Posts
    381

    Default

    I think the decision to search with or without a line should come down to experience. The instructors teaching at the FDIC are from the big cities and may, in their own departments, respond to 2 or 3 working fires per day. Unless you are working in a run down section of a big city, like NYC, Detroit, Chicago or Baltimore, you may be lucky if you are responding to 2 or 3 fires per month. Live burns provide great training but they don't happen every day. Books and magazines provide great insight but don't replace the experience gained by going to fires every day. You had better be very confident in your skills if you decide to search without a line.

  3. #23
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    Pt. Beach, NJ
    Posts
    10,571

    Default

    Personally, never seen a straight stream push a fire, only a poorly used fog pattern.

    The best classes I've taken have been taught by FDNY officers, but what I learn there isn't neccessarily something that will work back in my home district
    Great statement Dal. I also have been through many classes taught by FDNY guys and one of the first things they relate to us is exactly that thought. Just because they do it there does not mean it's the best way to do it everywhere.

    My department has also begun taking water extinguishers into calls, but not for reported fires, we usually bring them for alarms and minor smoke conditions. Reason being, while investigating an alarm, should you actually find fire, you have something to fight it with. It would be too much effort to pull hoses for every alarm call.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

  4. #24
    EuroFirefighter.com PaulGRIMWOOD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 1999
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    831

    Default

    Tactical placement of lines is essential and communication and awareness on the interior is equally important. Tom Brennan (ex FDNY) will offer sound advice on 'rear of fire' situations where the primary search crew are operating (with or without line) in an area where conditions are likely to deteriorate quickly (even with straight stream) when the engine line pushes in. He quotes effective timing is an important feature in this respect.

    CFDE3 makes some good points.......

  5. #25
    District Chief distchief60b's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    6,413

    Default

    Wow....so many valid points here..My head is spinning!

    Paul, Bones, Kiwi and FireLt all think similar to me. And as far as TEMPIE goes....you go girl...throw out that medical terminology and give em the what for!

    I too have done searches with a hoseline and without. Have searched in front of the line as it is advanced and many other scenarios. I also am a believer in the "CAN." Someone said...We do not have the staffing of FDNY...AMEN BROTHER. My engine runs with a driver, me and a firefighter and they expect me to command... Do the math..too many jobs...not enough hands! If I have 4 people...I am drooling going down the road.

    So...with a crew of 3...arrive on scene with smoke showing in middle of night... Do a walk around and order line to front door while in progress. Middle of night...hmmm..where's the victim most likely? Put hoseline in place between that point and fire and I do the looking while he does the cooking. In and out quick with a light and a haligan. (they took my can because the children used em to play with) If I know someone is trapped I am gonna immediately bump a 2nd alarm as I establish command and run it off my portable through my PO until the calvary comes. If I don't find em right off in the bedroom then I work my way out. With the luxury of 4 folks it is all the same now except I got me a helper in the search. This is all in a SFD. If you are running a multi family occupancy then you have to make a decision where to begin.. Complicates matters now since you have potential for multiple trapped victims and multiple compartments. With a limited crew you can only do so much.

    As far as being "gone" when ya get there....That is a call I will not make. I am gonna go after em and find em. If they are burnt like toast...then...we write that one off as a bad experience. Sure..When they stand up they will be rendered unconscious or disoriented most likely....but..they may not be dead...and if they quite breathing then they have not inhaled much more than the first shot. So if we can find em and revive em we are heroes...if they don't make it we made a "valiant effort." If you have never worked in one of these situations then you can not imagine how it is nor can you adequately evaluate the way we do it. Being effective and safe in these situations comes with experience you learn in the field not in class. Classes are great for giving you the base knowledge...but you gotta do it...

    We also do not have the "Red Lines" any more because idiots in some part of the world started using a nozzle that discharged 30 gpm in an attempt to put out a fire in a well involved house fire and could not understand why it did not work. So the pumpers started being spec'd with out them.

    We will all agree that searching without a line is not optimal as far as safety but sometimes it is necessary. I know that truck companies (for those of us that have em) work ahead of the engines and over the fire all the time. That is what they do and as others have said..."that is why I love truck work."

    It is certainly not a tactics book but it is worth reading. It tells of many many situations where searches were done in manners like we have discussed. Some of them were successful and some were not. Sometimes the firefighters were lucky and other times they got hurt. It gives you a sense for what it is like in the real world. I suggest you read it...that book is>>>> THE BRAVE by George Pickett retired FDNY. It makes you think...for sure..
    09-11 .. 343 "All Gave Some..Some Gave ALL" God Bless..R.I.P.
    ------------------------------
    IACOJ Minister of Southern Comfort
    "Purple Hydrant" Recipient (3 Times)
    BMI Investigator
    ------------------------------
    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.

  6. #26
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    May 1999
    Location
    Here, There, Everywhere
    Posts
    4,191

    Default

    Thanks for all the input guys. It has been interesting so far. However I want to clear up some misconceptions.

    First as for my instructors at FDIC this year of the 20+ only 4 were from FDNY the rest were from California, Massachusets, Ohio, Indiana, Texas, Florida and others. So it isn't just the FDNY show.

    The tactics we trained in were for two man teams basicly. Most of the instructors depts had staffing on Trucks of 4 or less. (one in fact had a two man truck augmented by a 2 man ambulance)

    Paul Thanks for bringing up the booster line issue. That is what my dept did take with them in years past, however as with many depts here in the states the Booster line is being left off of new trucks and is not allowed for fire attack. (seperate issue for seperate time)

    As for experince and big cities are the only ones that should attempt this...I have to respectfully disagree. I am in a large suburb of a metropoltian city so my view point might be different from yours. But I have many friends in "big city" depts. Some run alot as suggested. Others run less than I do! If running frequent fires determines whether you are able to search without a line...then wouldn't that also preclude you from entering the burning structures to begin with because you don't see enoguh fire to be on the attack line. And one instructors Dept was comprised of 2 engines 1 ladder and 1 ambulance. That is it. Not very big to me.

    As I said in my original post, as I see it small responses will affect the search decsion but from my point of view we are the fire department and we get paid to do certian things. Once the first line is in operation the next task that will save the most lives according to those that are in the know is to perform a rapid primary search without a line. If my family were stuck in a fire I think the benefit of going in without a line greatly outweights the risks. After all we are supposed to be the profesionals and no one else is going to do our job. We always train to keep up on our skills so we should know how to properly perform at the real deal.

    Thanks for all the replies, keep them comming!

    FTM-PTB
    Last edited by FFFRED; 09-06-2002 at 04:47 PM.

  7. #27
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Sep 2000
    Location
    Westchester Co., NY USA
    Posts
    567

    Default

    I am also a firefighter who was trained and often conducted searches without a handline. I do also have to back up many of my brothers who stated that it does speed things up. I think one basic thing that I didn't notice mentioned, was that the type & manner of search you will perform is all based on size up and conditions when you arrive. You also aren't going to have to go stampeding into every home that needs to be searched before the intial attack line is being placed and the seat/advancement of the fire has been found/determined. I know its been said, but I just want to reiterate my experiences...is to keep in mind that even if you are searching with only 2 persons, we have found it very adventagous to keep 1 person at the door as a control/observation person for small rooms. Larger rooms, which we are seeing more and more of we often close the door as we are searching, and when we come back check it again, if things are getting hairy, out the window we can go.

    Kristen, as far as your question in regards to having the fire/steam/byproducts pushed towards you...it comes down to communication, and you being as observant as the attack team should be. It happens, but if it does it often means another piece of the puzzle wasn't placed properly. Poor ventilation, either horizontal and/or vertical, or fire conditions have intensified, or you are just stuck in an poor position and either need to move or exit. Additionally, as far as the argument that the handline is there incase you need to exit, you should generally have at least one handline in a point you came from or a window. We have all been trained on how to distinguish which way is out when you meet up with a hoseline that isn't yours.

  8. #28
    Senior Member Dalmatian90's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Posts
    3,120

    Default

    But I have many friends in "big city" depts. Some run alot as suggested. Others run less than I do! If running frequent fires determines whether you are able to search without a line...then wouldn't that also preclude you from entering the burning structures to begin with because you don't see enoguh fire to be on the attack line.

    It's not so much the "run volume" but factors like consistent staffing & fast response. Like you said Fred, not everyone in the big cities are busy -- in fact, many suburban volunteers can compete with most big city paid firefighters in the number of fires they work in a year. Now there are also some very, very busy urban fire companies and especially getting on special units like Rescues or Squads that roll to every worker you get to see and experience a lot. But many more firefighters are toiling away in quiet residential areas, and even of the fires those quiet companies make, any given firefighter assigned to them is probably only on duty for 1/5 to 1/4 of them.

    I don't quite like "paid" or "vollie" for this, a better term is "staffed" and "on-call." Departments that staff their stations know pretty consistently whose on duty, how long it takes apparatus to get from station X to fire location Y, and you get to know the skills and aptitudes of who you're on shift with. That consistency is the biggest thing to help decide in favor of higher-risk tactics. It kinda sucks if you committ to a higher risk tactic, then find out the troops you thought were going to back you up never showed up, and the guy you jumped in the truck with really doesn't like when it gets hot.

    Things can go wrong for both staffed & call organizations -- weather happens, simultaneous calls happen, frozen hydrants happen, the wrong dispatch happens (it's soooo nice pulling up with your brush assignment and finding out oh, it's a structure fire with exposures...). Just the on-call forces have the added question on each call of just who is going to respond and when their gonna get to the station and/or scene.

    I'll even say while staffing is important, most of us don't need 5 & 6 to use some, or a lot, of what FDNY and Boston and some of the other congested northeastern cities do simply 'cause our buildings aren't quite as challenging. Not saying I want only 2 & 2 either! A couple of three/four-man companies and knowing a couple more three/four man companies are a few minutes out gives me a lot more tactical confidence then when I only know for sure that the three guys on scene have responded, and you don't know how many more firefighters for sure are responding, or when for sure they'll get here.

    And sometimes being in smaller places has it's advantages. There's only a handful of buildings in my town we couldn't have water on the fire with 60 seconds of arriving on scene. You get fire on the sixth floor of a big apartment building, it could be several minutes just to stretch hose to get close to it. I guess that's a consistency...we don't know who we'll get, but we know we can get water on it fast.

    First as for my instructors at FDIC this year of the 20+ only 4 were from FDNY the rest were from California, Massachusets, Ohio, Indiana, Texas, Florida and others. So it isn't just the FDNY show.

    Ok, I'm probably known to exagerate a bit. But FDIC is put on by Fire Engineering, and FE has for the last 10 years or so been on a very strong urban northeast firefighting bent. It's kinda of interesting to read the three major mags, and see the slightly different way they view things, from FE with it's urban northeast view, to Firehouse which is more mid-atlantic/midwest and surburban, to Fire Rescue which is more western & rural. Yeah, all three cross over, but all three also predominantly like those molds.

    Just gotta learn from everyone, understand why they do things, and what you can take home and apply, and what you just tuck under your helmet.

    By the way Fred, great discussion you started here.

    ---------------------
    What I've learned here: Ok, not really relevant to me, but I didn't realize Kiwi in NZ was running trucks with tanks in the 1000 gallon range. Usually when I think of "British" (incl. Australia & New Zealand) tactics using high-pressure booster reels, I vision them run off of 300 gallon or so water tanks. Big difference between 300 gallons and 1000gallons!

    Oh, and I really agree with the Lieu from Detroit -- I'm a big boy, and I notice a big difference in the manueverability & speed of our 1.5" line over the 1.75". You wouldn't think that little would make so much of a change. We have both on our attack truck...if it's only light smoke showing and we're gonna have to go find the fire, I'll grab the 95gpm 1.5". I do get conservative and grab the 125-200gpm 1.75" for "workers" though.

    One final thought before I go off the 'net for the weekend (having 'puter problems at home), application is more important than flow. I've personally knocked down 3 rooms and an attic with that 1.5" line flowing 95gpm within a couple minutes. I've also had a stupid 10' x 12' shed absolutely kick my butt and laugh at the 1.75" line, several times with me planted and flowing 200gpm just cause I couldn't get a good angle on the fire, I had no roof left to hold in a smothering steam or bounce water off to hit the seat, and the officers didn't want anybody "inside," nor would they let us go Tazmanian on the remaining structure and show it what mad truckies could do. Three lines and a second tanker full of water later we finally had waited out the fire till it burned itself down.

    The whole point to that last paragraph is I wonder sometimes if we keep upsizing from booster to 1.5" to 1.75" to 2" because either a) we don't know when to pull a 2.5" or b) we fail to use the small lines effectively too often and instructors/chiefs/risk loss managers try to go conservative and say, "throw more water at it!"

  9. #29
    Senior Member Temptaker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    WA
    Posts
    942

    Default

    I think the decision to search with or without a line should come down to experience.
    I agree totally. It isn't all that uncommon here to have the senior members perform the primary search while the newer members are stretching the line, or to have a senior member take a junior (not an explorer) member in with them. It's a way to teach them what to look for. It all depends on the companies compliment. For example there are usually two engines or an engine and a quint dispatched to smoke calls here. I live in a big city and we have the man power to do that, under normal conditions that means 8-10 guys arriving within two minutes of each other. If the first rig has mostly jr fill-in members because of sick calls or vacation etc, it doesn't really make sense for them to do a primary without a line because they don't have the experience with fire behavior to KNOW when it is going bad. It would become a greater liability to allow them to do that. The second rig being only a minute behind may have 4 guys on it, with 10,15, 20 yrs experience. They can still be inside before that line is stretched and charged, command is still maintained and back-up is there if they need it.

    I know lots of smaller cities don't have the man power to do that. It was just an example that every situation needs to be weighed individually. There are tons of elements to factor into whether you pull a line or not. One of the biggest in my opinion should be the overall experience of the crew at the scene.

  10. #30
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    May 1999
    Location
    Here, There, Everywhere
    Posts
    4,191

    Default

    Dal 90 and others:

    I agree this is a great conversation. I figured it would get a decent response after I discussed what I learned at FDIC with my company...boy you think I'd questioned their sexual orientation!

    But seriously there have been some great points discussed here. I agree with you that it really isn't a paid/vollie issue...I think it seems to be how many jakes do you send to a fire issue.

    It seems the split is between poorly staffed depts. The ones that always take a line because there are only two or three companies and they are having to "do it all" Alot of us including myself have worked in such an environment. And the either larger or better staffed departments, not just Boston, NY, LA etc. I know of many "large" midwest departments that by East or West coast standards are small.

    My dept has more in common with the bigger ones than the smaller ones, but that is always changing because we are rapidly growing and our tactics sometimes still resemble the methods used when we had only 2 Engines and a Truck with Mutual Aid 20 minutes away.

    There are some interesting perspectives here. It's good to see some actuall issues being discussed as opposed to "what is the color of your truck!!"

    Here is a follow up question for any of you that are game. We recently had this situation come up at a high-rise fire of ours:

    If you are tasked with search of the fire floor or floor above on a old folks high-rise and the first line is in operation do you need to take a line from the standpipe two floors below the fire floor just to search?

    FTM-PTB

  11. #31
    Forum Member dfd3dfd3's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    IL
    Posts
    229

    Default

    Fred,
    You had some good points in ur last post. If u arent on a dept that isnt as busy as FDNY or u dont run many fired, you still should train to do the functions that need to be done on the fireground. You have to ask yourself are u willing to sacrifice the prescious seconds or minutes it takes to stretch a handline and pull it through a house before u find a victim for your own greater safety? I would be curious to see how much longer it takes to find a victim say on the 2nd story in a house while puling a line for the search team, id guess itd take close to a minute longer if u didnt have a line. And if ur personnel arent comfortable or u arent confident in the abilities of some of ur people, its an issure of training. you should be able to do a search without a handline and u should be able to know when conditions are becoming unsafe. And if some dont have the "luxury" of seeing real fire that much, you still can train in houses, training burns whereever until u are confident in your company's and depts capabilities.

  12. #32
    Forum Member dfd3dfd3's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    IL
    Posts
    229

    Default

    Fred:
    "If you are tasked with search of the fire floor or floor above on a old folks high-rise and the first line is in operation do you need to take a line from the standpipe two floors below the fire floor just to search?"

    I would say noo. For me its an issure of division of labor. With a three man company u just can not do 2 fire gorund operations at the same time effectivly. One will suffer and if u pull a line your search will suffer. If your initial attack is handling the fire effectively i dont see any reason u need to pull a line to the floor u are searching on, it will only slow u down. If the fire is beyond the control of the first line, then the best tactic for the second company would be to not search an upper floor but to pull a line and back up the initial line on the fire floor but not on a search. You could protect in place with an elderly high rise, especially with the normal staffing most depts have. Id have to think putting a quick knock on the fire is the first priority, but to pull a line for a search is going to make ur search inneffective and slow.

  13. #33
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    May 1999
    Location
    Here, There, Everywhere
    Posts
    4,191

    Default

    DFD3,

    I'm glad I made some sense...what you said is exactly what I was trying to convey.

    Just as one learned at a point how to extinguish a room and contents with a hose line, or vent a roof or throw a ladder, one should also be trained on how to search without the use of a line.

    And as I see it, it isn't just the amount of time that is lost in stretching and dragging the line...but also the "effectiveness" of the search. As has been written and spoken about many times, if you are a company of three or even two on a line and trying to search...you really aren't paying attention to the important task at hand...the SEARCH. You've lost 50% up to 66% or even more of the effectiveness of the search when draging a line. Not to mention who will carry the tools (6' hook, irons, TIC etc.) Why even bother searching if you aren't going to give it your all. Just tell your citizens that if they can't get out they are on their own because it isn't safe for the firefighters.

    Besides I feel it is a teamwork that creates the most effective and safest operation at a fire. The company on the attack line should confine the fire and in doing so protect the interior stairs as well. This then allows you to search knowing the brothers downstairs aren't going to back out unless you are off the second floor. By taking a line it seems to me you are saying you don't trust in their abilities and skill.

    Dalmation 90.. I agree completely about only taking what tactics are relevant back to your Dept. For the most part the articles regarding Flatroof cutting on Appartment buildings that are found in the books, FH and FE are irrelevant. We don't have bulkheads or dumwaiter shafts nor do we have skylights. But as for search in Private dwellings go...at FDIC the projects we were tearing appart were almost identical to those found in my city as well as most of the midwest. Some call them townhouses, others appartment homes regarless the tactics for them are generaly the same. And from what I've seen outside the normal variances a two-story wood frame house in your district is identical to mine and identical to one found in Denver or Little Rock or wherever. Thats why the search tactics I feel translate so well.

    I think the 4000+ Civilians killed in building fires every year is insulting and although some are gone before we get there, I think it is a direct result of poor resources (too few FFs) and poor techniques and training. We as the fire service should work to correct the shortcommings and try to bring the number down some using time-tested practices and principles.

    Stroutkristen, my fault that I didn't specify the type of hi-rise, it was a residential highrise which is vastly different from a hi-rise office building like the First Interstate building. And I meant to show that you can't always search with a charged hose line because in a highrise it is way too time consuming to hook up an additional line from two floors bellow to perform search on the fire floor or floor above. We encounterd this recently and many in my dept. never realized that it is almost imposible follow our policy in a high-rise fire (the policy as was previously discussed.)

    Thanks for all the responses, it has been good to see some different perspectives on the subject.

    FTM-PTB

  14. #34
    IACOJ BOD FlyingKiwi's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    4,757

    Default

    OK try this one for a comfortable fit. Over there you call it "2 In 2 Out". Over here we call it "Standard Operating Procedures" If you enter wearing BA, there are two of you at all times. larger teams are made up in multiples of two.

    You never ever enter and operate alone in the fire zone. Surrounding floors etc maybe different, but NEVER in the zone.
    Psychiatrists state 1 in 4 people has a mental illness.
    Look at three of your friends, if they are ok, your it.

  15. #35
    Senior Member Dalmatian90's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Posts
    3,120

    Default

    Well, I stopped into the office so I'm briefly back on 'net...

    I think the 4000+ Civilians killed in building fires every year is insulting and although some are gone before we get there, I think it is a direct result of poor resources (too few FFs) and poor techniques and training. We as the fire service should work to correct the shortcommings and try to bring the number down some using time-tested practices and principles.

    We train to do our best when the rare oppurtonity presents itself to make a rescue.

    Staffed departments, especially those in urban areas, simply have a much better chance of having "viable life" -- they get out quicker, and often have much shorter times from the firehouse to the fire room. They'll also find buildings big enough to have victims away from the immediate fire but still in immediate danger, and they have buildings big enough to have major fire but still be structurally sound/standing. I'm also convinced one of the factors in urban cities that contributes to them making rescues is they have people to rescue -- they have apartment buildings with large transient populations in places no one knows your name. Out in the sticks, you ask the homeowner on the front lawn if everyone's out and they say yes, that's good information -- we don't have a lot of unkown potential victims, if everyone's out, we're in a property conservation mode at that point.

    My area, which is pretty typical I think of much of the rural/lightly populated suburban east coast we run into a lot of single family wood frame buildings. I've run on three fatal fires in 15 years -- two were delayed notifications and fully involved structures on arrival with no hope of survival. One was a ranch house, family awoke, and a 12 year old "ran the wrong way." Unfortunately, they lived at the extreme end of the response areas, five miles from either responding station -- on a night that all the roads were covered with glare ice, turning what would've been a long run into an eternity. I probably took 10 minutes (and a couple spin outs) to arrive POV and had my orders of were to place the nozzle -- when the first truck arrived. The first truck arrived within moments, we had the fire knocked down and a crew inside within two minutes, and we had the kid out within a few more -- very good operationaly, but there just wasn't anything we could do about the distance or the weather. On the balance, in those 15 years I've only seen us at one fire were there were legitimate "rescues" of people pulled out of the building. The unfortunate reality is there are many areas that simply couldn't justify the expense of maintaining the stations and manpower needed to react to fires to save lives. My town a paid, 1710 compliant department would excede the employment of our school system, and education represent 80% of our town's budget!

    Lifesafety has to come from individual's own actions, and from engineering improvements. Those are the two areas that can really make a difference.

    It's not to say in the right places more manpower and more stations/apparatus aren't important, and that you shouldn't train to rescue people. It's just the reality is for many of us "rescues" are just something that is going to be an extremely rare, I dare even say once-in-a-career event. Better fire department staffing might save another few hundred lives, but fire prevention side could save a few thousand.

    ============================== ==
    Quoting myself but there just wasn't anything we could do about the distance or the weather

    One improvement in technology since that night some 12 odd years ago -- On Spot Chains! Doesn't help home-to-station, but at least you can flip the switch leaving the station and have traction on ice.

  16. #36
    Senior Member Dalmatian90's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Posts
    3,120

    Default

    Meant to add, by "Urban" I'm not neccessarily talking Boston or NY either -- many small, compact cities running just a few companies will have similiar response times and situations.

    Unfortunately, I see the opposite situation too -- places with paid firefighters who could get in to do that rescue, if they weren't spread so thin that often you get a "Lights are on, no one's home." situation. I know a couple departments with paid crews and compact urban/semi-urban response districts that take what's a small shift (5 or 6 guys) and then dilute them by having them also run two ambulances. 5 guys quickly at a dorm room (thank god they're now mostly sprinklered) fire might have a shot at doing some good and pulling out a drunk coed. Of course if they get simultaneous medicals and send four guys and two ambulances out, the remaining officer is pretty much useless if an actual structure fire comes in.

    It's probably those seriously understaffed or rather over-extended fire departments that need the most help if their to be able to consistently be ready to make a rescue.

  17. #37
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Sep 2000
    Location
    Westchester Co., NY USA
    Posts
    567

    Default

    If you are tasked with search of the fire floor or floor above on a old folks high-rise and the first line is in operation do you need to take a line from the standpipe two floors below the fire floor just to search?


    I'm also one that is going to say no. Ensure that all your "smoke" doors from the stairwells are closed. If you do feel the need to stretch a line to the floor above, its best to attempt to try to have one from outside the buildings system, or off a seperate standpipe system (riser). We do however have a few high rises that we automatically stretch a line up to the floor above, more precisely the apartment above, because of past experiences/pre-planning, we know that there will be fire extension.

  18. #38
    IACOJ BOD FlyingKiwi's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    4,757

    Default

    Coming back for a second to booster reels. Is the main reason you will not search the immediate fire zone with a line due to weight of the line and effort required.

    I stated before that you do not really notice the standard 45mm or 1 3/4 inch (external) diameter High Pressure Line when you are searching. I will qualify that by saying unless you are the #2 man who does the main line pulling job.

    If we take a standard length from one of our reels, it is 25 metres long or 82 feet. The reel normaly has three lengths on board for 246 feet of line, normally two lengths would be employed from the door laid back in curving bights on the ground, with one lentgh being advanced into the structure for search.

    Now one length of 45mm HP line will hold 40 Litres of water or 10.57 gallons of water.

    40 Litres of water = 40 Kilos of weight or 88 pounds. which with the dry weight of the line, and two of you working on the end is not hard to move.

    With both of you taking a couple of seconds every so often to pull more line in you are normally searching with only a percentage of that weight actually being moved.

    Taking it the other way and using one of our 70 mm lines that hold 100 Litres , like a 2 3/4 line for the US, we would now be pulling 100 Kilos or 220 pounds for each length.

    That would be silly.

    As far as water output goes from the HP line, for those that want the biggest damn blast of water in creation from their line every time, keep using the biggest width line you can and be happy.

    On the highest setting the Elkhart variable branch we use will pump 3 Litres per second on a HP line, or .8 of a gallon. that is 48 gallons or 181.7 litres per minute. More than enough to darken down fires as you are searching, and way more than enough to lower temperatures preventing flashovers.

    Remember here that I am discussing only using the line in the immediate fire zone or a "Single Family Dwelling" as per the threads title. Wether you stage two stories down, run off risers, do or don't use hoselines to search above a multy story complex fire is over to your SOP's.

    As Dal said Fire Prevention and Fire Awareness campaigns will save lives. I know I keep saying this, but a long term Smoke Detector campaign will not reduce the number of fire, but it will cost less lives lost due to earlier evacuation of people from the building.

    We go to the degree of running tv adverts at the start and end of daylight saving (every six months) telling people to test the detectors and change batteries.
    Last edited by FlyingKiwi; 09-08-2002 at 03:38 PM.
    Psychiatrists state 1 in 4 people has a mental illness.
    Look at three of your friends, if they are ok, your it.

  19. #39
    District Chief distchief60b's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    6,413

    Default

    Fred....To your question about the multi-story old folks home...

    I say no... If you have a line in place on the fire then get....do the search....and get out. Keeping in mind of course that while searching you are checking for extension on the floor above the fire. The extra time it would take to stretch the hose line up the stairs and to the fire above could mean the difference in a save or a fatality. Additionally, if you are using the same stairwell, that is a lot more hose to jam up the access and egress. If you have to take a hoseline....well..take one. It is a judgment call.

    As far as staging goes....hmmm.. I was always taught to stage 2-Floors below and use the SP connection 1 floor below. If you do as stroutkristen says that meanyou are gonna need almost 100' of hose to just get to the fire floor. If your HR Pack has 150' in it then your are up the proverbial creek without a paddle... As many have said including Dal and others that are respected here...There is the book way and then there is the street way.. The street way involves the use of common sense by firefighters and officers that have been there and seen similar situations. They adapt, modify and overcome. We may not always perform as the pictures in the book say...but as long as we do the job and do it with the safety of our personnel as # 1 then it is ok to "adapt."

    As far as weight of hose and reel line vs 1.5" or larger..... Well...I have to say that I am against using the 1" line for interior purposes even if just to search. I am not certain that I would want to depend on 20-40 GPM (depending on nozzle) to protect me in the event I had an imminent flashover situation or in the event I "stumbled" onto a fire that was busting butt on an upper floor due to extension. In today's technology, there are hoselines that are very light weight and durable. Some have even improved the lightness of the hose and still have a double jacketed system. Look into all the hose manufacturers and see what is best. You can not lighten the load of the water....8.33 pounds/gallon no matter how you cut it...but you can lighten the medium through which it goes. I say this only for those of you that are adament about the used of hoselines when searching. If you are gonna require it...then at least make it easier for them folks thats gonna be using it. Can not make suggestions as to which hose to use...but can say...look closely...and look at all the manufacturers.....
    09-11 .. 343 "All Gave Some..Some Gave ALL" God Bless..R.I.P.
    ------------------------------
    IACOJ Minister of Southern Comfort
    "Purple Hydrant" Recipient (3 Times)
    BMI Investigator
    ------------------------------
    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.

  20. #40
    EuroFirefighter.com PaulGRIMWOOD's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 1999
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    831

    Default

    and you're respected here too CaptStan - but.........

    I have to say that I am against using the 1" line for interior purposes even if just to search. I am not certain that I would want to depend on 20-40 GPM (depending on nozzle) to protect me in the event I had an imminent flashover situation or in the event I "stumbled" onto a fire that was busting butt on an upper floor due to extension
    The point is....40 gpm is better than zero gpm! Such a flow CAN be used effectively to reduce temperatures in the upper thermal layers - it may also be used to 'inert' smoke - preventing flashover - and if I stumbled onto the fire that was 'busting butt' through extension then I would be better off with my 40 gpm than nothing.

    But I also agree - there ARE occasions when searching without a line is essential and productive. Its just that the 40 gpm high-pressure line is light and quick, just as Kiwi says.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts