For those of you who use chainsaws to ventilate or whatever other uses---- How do you handle safety concerns? These are a dangerous piece of equipment and one slip can seriously injury the operator in a split-second. Obviously inservice,handling of the device,and general operating. Does anyone wear chaps? Do you tie off on ladders? Hearing protection? Are fire helmets sufficient? Should the operator be wearing all OSHA compliant gear such as professional arborists and loggers use. What do you forestry guys use in wildfire ops?
This has become a concern in our dept as we have two new saws and there is some question on these subjects. Thanks, John.
Well now being with a City Department, the biggest thing we do is in house safety tips and training with our firefighters and General Safety operations with Chainsaws and K-12's. We just follow the IFTSA standards for City type situations.
When I was a Wildand Firefighter and a Sawyer, we had a USFS class that we used to have to pass in order to handle chainsaws. And yes we wore Chaps and ear plugs, gloves, helmets and common sense.
For both my City and Wildand backgrounds, whiule operating a saw we always had a swamper or backup perons as part of the saw team, this is true even with the City Ventilation stuff now. someone behind your back with his/her hands on you in case something goes wrong they can make you aware of it or rappidly remove youf rom the situation.
I think the national Wildand Firefighter Coordninating Gruop has a class called S-212 Power Saws that would be good for your organization to look into. Though geared for Wildand ops, is good use to cross over into Struckural stuff as well. Information still applies to all Fireground scenes.
The extend of my FD chainsaw training was a 5 minute prep talk on the safe way to start it and maybe a 30 second blurb on kickback. Thankfully I have had training from other sources prior to that. I have seen some dangerous use of chainsaws on calls though, and it is something I have to bring up when I return from my leave of absence (only another 9 weeks and I am back on call!). I have been gone for 3 months and my heart still starts pumping when I here something that sounds like my pager ;)