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  1. #1
    EuroFirefighter Batt18's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
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    509

    Default BACKDRAFT in St. Louis!

    "Five St. Louis firefighters were injured on the job Saturday morning. They were battling a blaze at a two-story home in the 46-hundred block of Evans Street. Fire Chief Sherman George says the crew was looking for the source of the fire when they determined the second floor ceiling was burning.

    The firefighters, thinking the blaze was under control, opened a hole in the ceiling to vent smoke. That created a 'flash-over'. Witnesses say a few of the firefighters had to jump out of the home to escape the flames.

    Four firefighters went to Saint Louis University; three of them were treated and released. One will stay overnight at the hospital for observation. Another firefighter was transported to Barnes and will stay overnight.

    Fire Chief George says the crew's decision to ventilate the fire was a miscalculation".

    Sounds like Coos Bay and a host of other incidents where backdrafts have caused multiple firefighter deaths or injuries. The ONLY way to deal with these incidents is mass injection of water-fog or some inert gas into the ceiling void.........?
    Last edited by Batt18; 02-09-2003 at 08:16 AM.


  2. #2
    MembersZone Subscriber
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    May 2001
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    Gloversville New York USA
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    Batt18,
    I'm sure you know that searching for fires in those hidden void spaces can be dangerous to personnel. Time and time again you here reports of FF's being injured in this scenario. Alot of times, when the FF's are interviewed after they say there was very little indication of the amount of fire or smoke until they open up the area, introducing 02 and causing the area to erupt violently. Alot of times you hear things like "There wasn't even enough smoke to warrant my SCBA facepiece being donned." I like your idea of the piercing nozzle being used to inject water into void areas. Thermal Imaging Cameras can certainly aid in locating the fire in these void areas. Secondly, FF's need to be trained to be aware of this hidden danger and make sure all PPE is being used correctly when opening up these areas(if necessary). Building construction recogonition is also important. Thanks for bringing this topic up--maybe you prevented other FF's from making this same mistake.

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