1. #1
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    Question electric meters?

    How many depts. out there still pull electric meters during fire ground operations? For the longest time that was standard practice on our dept. But now we must wait on the power company to disconnect at the pole. Meanwhile, firefighters are inside pulling ceilings with live wires. Finding the main breakers box in some of these structures can take as long as the power company. Any thoughts or comments would be appreciated.

    Stay Safe!
    Last edited by emer554; 11-30-2002 at 11:01 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default We do

    We pull the meter when fire is into the structure on single family dwellings.

    There has been debate in the forums on this.

    I'm not going to say it's right or wrong.

    You should check with your power company about this too.

  3. #3
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    Thumbs down Don't do it

    You are at more risk trying to pull it than fire fighting with the power on. The power company will most likely have a presentation on this and other subjects relating to first responders.
    Ask them to come and give it to you, and take the guess work out of it. We have had them in a few times. Also the Propane company, both were very helpful.

  4. #4
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    We never pull the meter. We have had the electric company in to do a class and they advise against it. I once watched an experienced electrician pull a meter and get thrown completely across a yard. If you follow the drop coming to the house, you can generaly find the panel and shut down the main breaker. We also call the power company and have them D/C the power at the tap.

  5. #5
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    we do not pull meters here. mostly since a lot of newer homes around here have the meter with a bypass running beside it. so pulling the meter wouldn't do any good. we just take note of the breaker box, if any were tripped or what and then turn them all off. the electric company is called as soon as possible and they turn off the electric using their methods.

    also several of the houses in our district have illegal hook-ups as well. seen extension cords running from poles to the houses.
    NREMT-P\ Reserve Volunteer Firefighter\Reserve Police Officer
    IACOJ Attack

    Experts built the Titanic, amateurs built the Ark.

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    Extension cords running from the pole to the house? sounds pretty backwater..heh... Anyway, when it comes to noting any tripped breakers and turning them all off, why not just hit the main switch, this should have the same effect of turning off all the power to the house but without the hassle of trying to remember, or writing down, which breakers were tripped...

  7. #7
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    only here can you find a double wide parked next to a red brick home.
    NREMT-P\ Reserve Volunteer Firefighter\Reserve Police Officer
    IACOJ Attack

    Experts built the Titanic, amateurs built the Ark.

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    Default

    Learn the correct way of dealing with the power (from the power co.)
    Then do whatever they allow.

    In our area Commonwealth Edison works very well with us and we are trained to safely handle a reasidential service.

    It isn't a safety issue if you know what you are doing. electricity is no more dangerous then many of the things we encounter.

  9. #9
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    We don't pull meters, the power company doesn't fight fires!
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
    Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

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    Good point captain gonzo. If you ever saw all the protective equipment that a power company lineman uses when pulling the meter, you would think twice about doing it yourself. Ask them sometime why they wear all that. Plus the older meters that do not have the anti arcing horns on the leads...well your really putting yourself at risk of completing that circuit yourself. We let the Power Company pull them, and we make sure 911 has them responding ASAP on a housefire.

    I have guys in my company who work for the power company (I mean they have electrical engineering degrees and all) and every single one will tell you don't touch the darn things. I take those guys word on the matter like gospel.

    Stay safe
    If you can keep your head about you, while those around you are losing theirs, then you will be a man my son.

    Rudyard Kipling.

  11. #11
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    Default

    As an electric company employee, and an asst. chief of a volunteer dept., I would advise against pulling meters. Too many things can go wrong. Arcing inside the meter can and will cause an explosion, right in your face.The results can be disastrous with glass and molten metal directly in front of you. Have the utility dispatched as soon as you are and I know we will try our best to get there as quickly as possible. Many large residential properties are also wired in such a way that by just pulling the meter does not shut off the juice to the property. Let the utility take care of it. Also contact your local utility, most of us have public safety demonstrations specificlly designed for emergency responders.

    Training, Training, Training!!!!!!

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    Thumbs down Dont do it, it'll leave a mark!

    Gotta agree with Gonzo and the others, dont pull meters. Our utility showed us a training film of a meter being pulled acring, that was enough for me. The video was caught by a news crew it was dramatic, the indiviual was damn lucky to live through it. We try to shutoff main breakers but like other rural fire fighters have to deal with homes that dont have main breakers. Most of our mobile homes are easily isolated by a main breaker at the meter pole. We also have the new 5,000 sq ft home with a bypass type meter sitting next door to the mobile home. I have also seen the main line breaker on the utility pole drop out by itself several times when house circuits shorted during a fire. Dont have the training or equipment to do it safely so leave it for the utility company.

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