1. #1
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    Default Suggestions Btwn R/p Or Heavy

    My department is looking to get rid of our heavy rescue, but can not decide to get a rescue pumper or a heavy rescue. Can you guys give us your opinions on what you guys like about each of the two? We would like to know from departments that run a rescue pumper or squad as i like to refer to them, what they see in advantage. We also run an als ambulance. We are a vols who protect appox. 5000 in a 45 sq. mile area, with a new york state college campus in the middle. We have always had a heavy, but are just looking to the future. Thanks.



    Robert Young
    Morrisville FD

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    Definition first. I consider a Rescue/Pumper an Engine Co. capable of partaking in certain rescue disciplines in a limited role. Most often vehicle extrication is the discipline incorporated into an Engine Co. and hense forth makes it a "Rescue/Pumper" to a limited degree provided they are completely equipped for the role. I firmly believe that if you were to carry ALL equipment for all the rescue disciplines (A Heavy Rescue Unit) and carry all the requisite Engine Co. equipment on the same rig, the apparatus would be massive and impracticle. In your department a Heavy Rescue has been the norm. Now your peers are considering a change to a Rescue/Pumper concept for, I assume, some veratility. Good idea I believe, but be careful. You can easily throw a set of tools on a pumper along with some step chocks and think it is a Rescue/Pumper. That is not the case. It takes a lot of work and planning to create a true Rescue/Pumper. Things to consider when deciding which way to go:
    1) Does your "Heavy" have any collateral assignments and capabilities (i.e.: Cascade, Lighting, Dive Rescue, Haz Mat, Trench, Tunnel, High Angle, etc.) that would be difficult to put into one "All capable rig"?
    2) How many Engine Co.'s do you have? If you have 1 or 2, is it really worth it? Can you afford sending and committing it to a rescue incident for a long period of time?
    3) Does your "Heavy" respond outside of your first due area for rescue incidents? Like #2, if you combine you send your "Heavy" and a pumper out of your first due. Do you have enough Engine Co.'s to still cover your first due?
    4) Does your manpower require limiting the number of rigs you have thereby requiring the combination?
    5) Do the number of rescue incidents in your first due require a "Heavy" with equipment for all the rescue disciplines?

    My volunteer department operates 4 Engine Co.'s with 2 designed and set-up as "Rescue/Pumpers" for vehicle extrication only. We also have a "Heavy" for long term/complicated vehicle extrications, collapse, tunnel, haz mat, lighting, cascade, etc. We do not think our Rescue/Pumpers are "All capable" rigs. We built them to suppliment the "Heavy" since we run simultanious motor vehicle accidents on high speed roadways regulary.

    Just some thoughts.
    Last edited by STATION2; 09-18-2002 at 02:08 PM.
    Stay low and move it in.

    Be safe.


    Larry

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    Default THANKS

    Thanks for the ideas, we are a small co, and don't actually have a two companies within our department. As of right now, we only have probably 20-25 active members in the whole dept. That does put a curbing on some of the appartus making it out with a 'crew'. And experienced one at that. There are only a few jobs, that we are considering this squad to do, we have no lakes or ponds of any sort in the district so no need for diving. No major highways, just mostly country side byways. One State route that travels through, but actually very minor on mva's. Mostly we are looking to place necessary equip. for a extrication, and or vehicle fire. We have first run engine, only a few years old, and a "referbished' snorkle for a truck. Right now we have 2 engines, a snorkle, heavy rescue, mini-rescue/ambulance, and a tanker. On an mva, the old engine(87 Ford/Youngs), heavy rescue(78 Ford), and the amulance(90 Ford) respond. Some thoughts are to have this new vehicle, replace both the engine and heavy. The old heavy only carries a cascade, extrication tools, some extra bottles, lights, brooms,fan, and other clean up items. Nothing too massive as it is. A lot of ladder op. equip is on the snorkle, take to a structure fire anyway. Thats why some of us like the thoughts of a rescue/pumper. Of course, others still think you can't fit all of the equip. that's on the heavy into a pumper and still not make it that large. But i don't see us having all the much equip. on the heavy as it is. There are so many options that sometimes we can't think of them all, that's why i came here. Thanks for the info STATION2.

  4. #4
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    The old heavy only carries a cascade, extrication tools, some extra bottles, lights, brooms,fan, and other clean up items. Nothing too massive as it is.


    Well if that is all it carries then take a look at this.....


    http://www.americanlafrance.com/NewDeliveries/Truck/89



    Robert B.
    Haddon Fire Co. #1

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    The only thing I would suggest is make sure you have a pumper that can get to the places the squad can't because of size. We have some streets that we barely get the rescue pumpers down. Other than that I am all for unit consolidation like this. Having only one unit on the free-way for MVCs with everything you need is a big safety boost in my opinion. The extra maintenance costs will not be missed either.
    "What makes a person run into a building others are running out of?...Character."- Dennis Smith

    www.elmirafire.org

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    Madison County - nice country Robert

    I have to strongly weigh in on the Rescue/Pumper option. We're a volunteer dept covering about 27,000 population with a college and a significant commercial/light industrial area in addition to the bulk of our residential areas. We currently run a pretty big walk-in heavy rescue and I personally would be substantially in favor of a rescue/pumper over the heavy for a variety of reasons:
    1. The truck's size borders on just too big - we are a fairly well staffed department, but qualified drivers are a bit at a premium. The shear size of this truck leaves quite a number of potential drivers out of luck. We get a very good turn out for our calls, but it is not uncommon to have 3,4 or 5 members waiting on a driver for a short period of time. When I first got into the fire service, pretty much everybody drove. But today, that's not the case, at least with us. And I think the ever increasing size of the trucks is partly to blame.
    2. For us and likely for you, rescue for this truck is 99% MVA. Our ladder, like yours, carries our fans, has a generator + lighting, spare bottles, etc. for structure fires. Outside of MVA equipment, we carry water rescue equipment, spare generators, high angle, and pumps for basement flooding calls. This is not high volume call equipment. The problem with this is that for an MVA, we have to get two trucks, the rescue and an engine out the door in very short order. Just as I said earlier, we get the manpower, but we can end up with a couple, three members waiting on that second driver after the first truck is out the door. It wouldn't be for that long, but to me, it just seems to make sense to put the MVA rescue tools/equipment on an engine and all you need is that first driver and your out the door. You can send additional manpower on a second truck, but with a rescue/pumper, you've got an engine and your rescue tools out the door, first thing, with everything likely you need.

    Whether you can completely eliminate a second truck, you need to look at that. Get some rough ideas on what a rescue/pumper would end up as if you put everything on the truck - maybe the size is OK, maybe not. I would look at possibly some rear pump options:
    http://www.americanlafrance.com/NewDeliveries/Truck/124
    http://www.saulsburyfire.com/pdfs/68...bry_Pumper.PDF
    or using a pump such as the Hale Qpak 1000 gpm on a std mid-ship. Both of these might give you options other than your standard pumper configuration and open up some space for you.

    I would look at where you end up with the rescue/pumper on size and see if that works for you. If you come up short on space, I wouldn't give up on the rescue/pumper. I would stop at a size that makes sense and then consider a light or medium rescue/utility type truck to carry other equipment. Maybe all you would need additionally is a 2-door F-45o light rescue. So you would run a rescue/pumper and a light rescue. It's still probably less money than a pumper and a heavy rescue. This type of arrangment would work well for dept like ours- replace that heavy rescue with a light or medium. It's likley everybody could drive it and for those few calls a year it was first due for water rescue, etc. there would certainly be no shortage of drivers to get it out the door. And for other calls, it wouldn't be critical that it got out right away since our bread and butter fire/MVA equipment would be on our engines and ladder. Good manpower rig for those type of calls.

    I started with a combination dept covering a city/town of 60,000 with a major university and a large college. 6 engines/2 ladders. When I was there, one of the engines was equip as a rescue engine with the departments only set of rescue tools, etc. This worked fine. In the early 90's the department purchased a big tandem axle rescue. Today, that truck is not normally staffed and the department runs 2 of the 6 engines as rescue/engines with a full set of rescue tools. Right back to where they started.

    And on "defining" the rescue/pumper as other posts have suggested - you and your dept are all that matter - define it as whatever makes sense for your department and community.

  7. #7
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    My opinion on this changes from day to day.

    Some days, I am glad we have a combination rescue/pumper. One truck, hit quick and hard, able to handle the first 10 minutes or so of most any situations thrown at it in our area.

    Other days though, I wish we'd gotten a hard-hitting attack engine with a separate rescue truck. The main reason behind this is that the r/p concept confuses people. "What do we do on scene at a building fire?" I like being able to assign company tactics and to train this way. A r/p muddies the water a little bit, much like our "quint" interferes with ladder/truck company work.

    Now this isn't the truck's fault. Trucks don't put out fires and rescue people: firefighters do. But with our relatively low call volume, and only so much time for training, it's hard to train and respond in a consistent fashion when people wonder what the heck their role is this time around.

    Riding assignments can help, either fixed or assigned en-route. But in a department where you never know how many people are showing up and what their level of training is, it is hard to get this to work effectively.

    Again, leadership and training solves this problem. But left untouched, it can severely hamper effective operations.

    Tonight I'm thinking I like the r/p concept. Ask me 'bout it tomorrow.

    I strongly agree with having a "rescue tender" like a light duty rescue to put more specialty items on. I am pushing for that to happen in my department. It would carry our water/ice rescue and dive equipment, confined space equipment, rope rescue equipment, be able to tow our boat, and the ATV with its rescue trailer.
    Last edited by Resq14; 09-20-2002 at 01:29 AM.

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    Take a look at Seagrave they make a good truck. They also make both heavy rescues and rescue pumpers. Check them out at......

    http://seagrave.com/Products/Rescues/rescues.html


    and


    http://seagrave.com/Products/Pumpers/pumpers.html

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    Resq14,
    What do carry on your R/P that leads (might lead) to the confusion at structure fire incidents? I'm interested in that - the R/P + light/medium concept that I think would work better in our department vs. our std pumper + heavy rescue, I wouldn't think that would not be confusing.
    I guess it depends what you carry?

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    Default Re: Cilfd

    Q. What do carry on your R/P that leads (might lead) to the confusion at structure fire incidents?

    A. Hoses.


    Our truck seats 8, with 6 SCBA available. We're lucky to get 4 interior qualified personnel out the door with the truck.

    On scene, when you want an engine company to put the fire out, and a rescue company to search beyond the location of the engine crew, roles often get confused and/or things don't get done.

    In this area, it seems that departments with dedicated rescues get fire scene "rescue work" done better and more efficiently. To me, it seems to suffer in the r/p concept... people tend to flock to hoselines. I notice the same thing with our tower truck that has a pump, water, and hoselines. Instead of forcible entry, laddering, venting, and controlling utilities, the crew runs in with a hose.

    I like the concept of engine, truck, and rescue company bread-and-butter operations on a scene. It is simple and straight-forward to help ensure that tasks get performed at the same time. Yes, it CAN work with a r/p and a quint. But for our department, I don't think it is at this time.

    It's probably our own fault for not aggressively correcting the situation. But I'd rather set us up for clear cut job functions, then blurred company lines. Versatility is great, but not when critical operations suffer from it.

    Again, none of this is the trucks' fault... simply poor implementation and integration on our part. It all depends on how your department operates, or how you'd like your department to operate.

    If you could assign your "rescue tender" or light-duty rescue to perform rescue company ops on a fire scene, assuming you could staff it appropriately, that would seem to work imho. You'd probably know best though, it being your department. I do realize you don't need a rescue truck to get rescue work done.

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    I run with a company with an engine and a heavy rescue. With the amount of rescue equipment that we carry and use on a fairly resonable amount of our calls, the two unit set up is the only way to go. There is a nearby community that runs with a rescue pumper and it seems to suit their needs just fine. They may not have the amount of tools as a straight rescue would, but they certainly have enough to get the job done. If they need additional equipment, they can always roll mutual aid for assistance. You have probably already done this, but if I were in your current situation, I would take a complete inventory of all the firefighting and rescue equipment that is needed for your coverage area. Then, I would sit down with the company officers and discuss if there are any new dimensions which our company plans to pursue in the future(e.g. confined space, scuba,high angle rescue, etc.). If the fire company could design a single vehicle to handle current fire and rescue needs, then the rescue pumper may be the way to go. If your coverage area is undergoing growth in population and/or industries, then the two vehicle set up may be best. Another consideration is available manpower. I hope this helps. Good luck.

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    Resq14
    Glad I asked the question. We don't run that way at all. Search and rescue would be assigned to a crew from a responding engine or the ladder. We run out of 2 stations and a fire incident would be a 3 engine/1 ladder response. We would get 6-7 on each rig (6 max on the ladder) for a total of 24-27 personnel. The Heavy Rescue does roll on most of these calls, but it might be somewaht later in response and maybe only staffed with a driver and 1 or 2 other firefighters. The Rescue would be for possibly additional lighting (alhtough the ladder has generator + lights and our new engine has a generator as well), rehab, spare cylinders (again, we run a straight stick aerial with a large compliment of spare bottles).
    I'm not sure I understand the "hose" problem entirely. For us, first engine is attack, second engine is supply, and third engine is manpower for typical residential fire. No one on the supply or manpower engines is going to be pulling handlines from their engine or the attack engine for that matter without an assignment to do so. Everyone who gets on an engine knows that there is just a 1 in 3 chance they will be attack and they could be assigned S/R, ventilation, salvage, etc.
    I guess you could say that our 3rd engine could be the rescue, but in our district, with the size, traffic, etc. We sometimes don't know who will end up attack vs. supply or supply vs. manpower. I would be very reluctant to give up the 3rd engine.

    I know what you're saying though, ensuring assignments for everything other than initial fire attack can be difficult. I guess we get at that with our SOP for attack, supply, and manpower engines.
    It really does depend on lot on your individual department operations, history, etc.

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    Default valid points

    All of you have valid points, the only thing i can say is, that we wouldn't really be in a situation where we would have to worry about it being our first due, we have a new engine which is first out on all structures. Then a snorkle which, when it gets fixed, should be out after that if in the village. But you guys give great ideas for us to chat over, see we really don't specialize in any thing other then extrication, no diving, or high angle rope stuff. They have a county team for that. But being able to take one vehicle to an mva, and have all the equipment there in one shot is probably the main reason i think a r/p is a good idea.

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    Default Re: valid points

    Originally posted by MFDANDCFD
    But being able to take one vehicle to an mva, and have all the equipment there in one shot is probably the main reason i think a r/p is a good idea.
    Yup I agree with that.


    I just like having a group assigned as a dedicated rescue company on a scene, so that search and rescue doesn't take a back seat to something else. Granted, concurrent operations should be performed, but I think it's easier to do this when you have a crew specifically trained and ready to fill this role.

    We have a mentality in our town that everyone needs a hoseline - truck work and everything else usually suffers.

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    Default What are you saying?

    Originally posted by Resq14
    I like the concept of engine, truck, and rescue company bread-and-butter operations on a scene. It is simple and straight-forward to help ensure that tasks get performed at the same time. Yes, it CAN work with a r/p and a quint. But for our department, I don't think it is at this time.
    I'm glad I'm not the only one!

    I don't see it as much an issue with the R/P, when I'm in that truck I'm thinking attack (if we're 1st due) or waiting for an assignment from command. However, with the quint Tower it is a real issue to me, especially since we've made that truck 1st due. My biggest problem with our R/P is the lack of some types rescue tools we have aboard, (such as a K-saw) and all that empty space we have.

    On MVA's I think the R/P model is great, especially if you are running short handed out of one station. However, if manpower is not an issue, and there are times when you run out of town for MVA's I'm a fan of a light rescue. I used to work a city that we had an F-350 set up for MVA's, high angle, and water rescue. It also had a generator and some lighting equipment and spare air packs. It was a tool box we'd bring with us when ever special equipment was needed, the rest of the time I stayed out of sight in the station and we had more space on our engines. It was heavy for its size, but using a light truck chassie is a lot cheaper than going heavy.

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