Thread: Overkill?

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    Default Overkill?

    Ok. Guys im not a FF, im just a EMT. Now we got toned out to a kitchen fire. They roll the trucks, en route we get called and told to cut sirens, bc the chief extinguished the fire before any trucks get there. As we pull up im in the jump seat in the back of the rig, I get out and see 1 ladder, 3 engines, a rescue, and a air/light. After talking to the chief, i found out it was caused by burning garlic bread. Now I dont know anything about fire's but to me this was way too much over kill. Especially for a volly dept. If I am wrong please correct me.

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    Default You are definetly WRONG!!!!!!!

    QUOTE: "Ok. Guys im not a FF, im just a EMT. Now we got toned out to a kitchen fire."

    -Kitchen Fire.....Another way of saying "Building Fire." You say they had three engines, a truck, a squad, an air/light unit, and EMS......Sounds like a decent, well equipped first alarm assignment for a building fire!

    -Fire Chief arrived on location, found and extinguished an apparently small fire. No problem there. Slow down the incoming pieces and hold whats in the station there. Sounds like he is doing what is in the best interests of the community- slowing down all the apparatus, decreasing the possibility of accidents while responding.

    Since you are new, just a reminder to you for if/when you drive the bus: It belongs FAR, FAR away from the fire scene! Don't block access for the Truck Company (In front of the address), don't block access for the Engine Company (usually one address in front of the fire address), don't block hydrants, and stay on the OTHER SIDE of the supply lines! That way you can get the bus to the hospital if someone needs transport!
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    Ok. Thats why I am asking. I didnt know so I figured I would ask. Didnt wanna look like I was questioning what they do. Never been to a fire before. I was obviously wrong and admit I was wrong with my assumption. Thanks for the response and tips. I will do,closest we could get to scene was about a half a block, PD shut down the only way in and we couldnt get past the crowd

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    Sometimes a computer fire can look like a whole lot of fire, but only be alot of smoke. It is better to have your equip their ready to go, than to get caught with your pants down. On the computer thing, those things put off alot of smoke,once the plastic casing starts to melt and burn.
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    geez, FWDbuffbuff, calm down. this guy isn't a firefighter, so he doesn't know how or why we do things. cut him a little slack.

    CBlasek, as was mentioned before, it is always better to have too much equipment on scene and then not enough when you desperately need it. the initial dispatch of a kitchen fire is treated as a structure fire until proven otherwise. yes, the chief did arrive and put it out, however this is more that needs to be done. there might be smoke from the burnt food, so the chief might want a PPV set up. or he figured it was 3am, and since the guys were up anyway, and on the road, might as well at least let them know they made it to the scene.

    had it not been simply "food on the stove", and an actual fire, 1 engine would have been used to bring a line in, a second engine would be performing a search for extention, the truck company would have been handling ventalation, and the 3rd engine would have been securing a water supply. the rescue could then do a search for any victums, and and light truck is really nice to have at night. but that's worst case scenario.

    it's ok to ask questions. that's the only way you learn and understand how the other side operates.
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    Default Something else to think about...

    While I am pleased that a majority of municipalities will send everyone hot to a call until told otherwise, there are some places that will have a PD unit respond just to check. That's when you hear "OMG, get me the world!" on the radio, sometimes in quite colorful language!

    Take, for example, a box alarm in a business or apartment complex. It's not uncommon for a whole first alarm assignment to go full speed, even if they've been there 3 times this week for the same thing. We don't want to assume something is nothing & have it burn a house down or kill someone.

    Look at it like a med call. You're gonna go full speed to a cardiac arrest patient with several hours of down time, just in case it's a situation you HAVE to deal with other than waiting for the medical examiner or funeral home.
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    Default Wow

    Hey Randy it is good to see some thing never change, Phew.....Cb don't worry about FWD he can't help himself.

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    Talking Normal...........................

    Heck, that sounds like a normal, 3-times-a-night call for us.......
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    One:
    How many firefighters does it take to effectively fight an "average" fire (say something that's extended beyond the room of origin) in "typical" building?
    45.

    Yep, four-five. Give or take a few, maybe surburban areas with good hydrants and small buildings can do it with fewer. Cities have bigger, more complex buildings; rural areas have water supply issues.

    Do many of us, frequently if not always, operate under-staffed? Yep.

    But to deal with a fairly standard fire needing a couple handlines, water supply established, backup lines in place, search & rescue, ventilation (horizontal & vertical), salvage (yes, protecting contents from damage is something we should be doing!), and having crews rotating through rehab and/or ready to go into action to deal with the unexpected...takes manpower. Lots of it.

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    Last night was our drill night. During the drill got a call for a pool heater fire. 2 Engines, 1 Teleboom, 1 Snorkle, 1 Utility, 1 Fire Police van, 1 Ambulance, 3 Police cars. 27 FF's on scene. Overkill? Yup. Homeowner impressed with quick and large turnout? Yup. Good PR? Yup. They don't know we were all at the firehouse doing a drill, they just know they needed help and help responded - fast.
    "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?

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    Default Naw Jim, Things Do change, for the good!

    Brother Blasik, My apologies for coming off abrasive! I didnt mean for that to come out the way it did. The next round is on me.

    As for you Mister Lee, Things can change- 10 years ago I wouldnt have apologized

    How you doing, Actually been wanting to get in touch with you- Me and a friend from Bucks were buffing back in Nov or early Dec last year, we caught a good all hands, In 82's local, if I remember right, it was a 2900 series box, over near Crotona Park East I think (Pix are at my parents place, cant look it up right now) It was a 6 story OMD, daytime job. We were in a hurry to get home, we snapped some pix and then bailed. After I got the pix developed, I realized that I am pretty sure I got you in one of them, taking a blow on a fire escape. I'll dig it up next time I am at my folks and double check.

    Hope things are well with you. Stay Safe!
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    Its cool. Thanks for the reply's guys. I want to get a understanding of how the FD operates. Im currently just a EMT, I want to go onto FF and than Paramedic all while taking college classes. My ultimate goal is FF/ParaMedic. I would also like to dabble into Arson Investigation, but that is a few years down the road. FWDBuff, where about in PA are ya? Im 30 mins out of Philly.

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    45??? where did that come from??? A typical building extended beyond the room of origin??? Say a small business maybe??

    that's 10 apparatus with 4 on each.

    6 Engines, 3 Aerials an Amb and B/C??? Sorry, I disagree, a typical fire extended beyond the room of rogin doesn't need a 2nd alarm.

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    See my post under http://cms.firehouse.com/forums2/sho...3&pagenumber=2 (towards the end)

    If your officers are routinely handling equipment, you're understaffed. The officers are their to think, watch, and make decisions and you can't make good decisions if you're distracted doing manual tasks.

    If you don't have at least three sets of eyes working as Chief or Chief's Aide's watching the building and fire...you're understaffed.

    If you can't immediately react to an unexpected extension of the fire by deploying a hoseline or the appearance of a victim at a window by throwing a ladder -- without reassigning personnel to do so, you're understaffed.

    If you only have one truck on scene capable of supplying a line in case the attack pumper craps the bed, you're understaffed/underequipped.

    If you're not preparing for horizontal vent in case the vertical isn't enough to stop the spread, you're understaffed.

    If you're not providing salvage activities to minimize water damage, you're understaffed.

    Is 45 uncommon? Absolutely. Doesn't mean that isn't what it takes if you want to handle a fairly advanced fire and still have reserves ready to handle things as they occur...it just means we often compromise the quality, quantity, efficency, efficacy, and safety of our operations to get the job done with less.
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    The Flip Side.

    Remember that when people call the Police 99% of the time it is not a life threatening situation.

    a. The property has already been stolen.
    b. The offender has left (otherwise they wouldn't be on the phone)
    c. The person is dead.

    When they call a Fire department it is DEEP S!@T RIGHT NOW for somebody or something 99% of the time (PFA's excluded).

    Respond with the big guns and step down as needed.

    Dal.

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    Originally posted by Bones42
    Last night was our drill night. During the drill got a call for a pool heater fire. 2 Engines, 1 Teleboom, 1 Snorkle, 1 Utility, 1 Fire Police van, 1 Ambulance, 3 Police cars. 27 FF's on scene. Overkill? Yup. Homeowner impressed with quick and large turnout? Yup. Good PR? Yup. They don't know we were all at the firehouse doing a drill, they just know they needed help and help responded - fast.
    That's the frustrating thing about working a combination department. Fire alarm in an industrial complex at 1:30 p.m. on a Tuesday gets you a single engine, 2-4 career personnel and a volunteer or two. The same call during volunteer meeting night gets you one or two engines, a truck and a utility vehicle each filled to capacity.

    In my opinion, if something deserves 20 people during volunteer meeting night... it deserves the same response when it happens any other time of the week, too.

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    Originally posted by CBlasek
    Its cool. Thanks for the reply's guys. I want to get a understanding of how the FD operates. Im currently just a EMT, I want to go onto FF and than Paramedic all while taking college classes. My ultimate goal is FF/ParaMedic.
    Please, please, please, don't say just an EMT. That makes it sound like it isn't a worthwhile job to have, that being a FF or paramedic is better! Don't put yourself down like that! Paramedics just have more education than you do, that's all, it doesn't make their job better than yours. Always remember your basics, cuz when the s**t hits the fan, sometimes that's all you have to fall back on.

    "Paramedics save lives, but EMT's save paramedics"

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    And now pu to the plate ...........CommDiva battin clean up. Is it overkill, no not if something is burning. The Chief put it out, and if it woulda have been me I would have cancelled all but the first arriving engine and maybe the truck, but on the whole thats about normal for a structure assignment here.
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    Originally posted by tlsmith083
    a typical fire extended beyond the room of origin doesn't need a 2nd alarm.
    I don't know what rolls on your first alarm, but for us anything that is showing fire is a 2nd alarm before we pull the first line, and if beyond room and contents most often a 3rd will be called (2 engines, a ladder or heavy rescue, and an ambulance per alarm).

    If you count up the jobs to be done on the fireground you can rack up a lot of manpower pretty quick

    1 Command officer
    2 Pump operators (attack and supply)
    1 Tower truck operators
    3 FF's on attack line
    3 FF's on backup line
    2 FF's to vent
    2 FF's to ladder 2nd floor
    2 FF's on primary search each floor
    4 FF's to form a RIT/FAST company
    2 EMT's for victim care
    2 EMT's for FF rehab

    Total: 26 jobs to do right off the bat(assuming 2 story) with 4 pumpers, 2 ladders, 2 ambulances to have enough seats to carry all of them in the first place

    Now add:
    4 Division/Sector officers
    2 Pump operators (one to feed the tower one to relay)
    1 Saftey/Acountability officer
    8 FF's to rotate in as crews exit to rehab
    2 Traffic control/fire police
    2 Cascade operators to fill SCBA


    Now you have 45 in 12 trucks and we still don't have any of the "middle management" officers of the ICS model such as staging or water supply. Throw in high humidity and heat, or extreme cold, or any long duration and you will easily use double this amount.

    Now these numbers are what you're supposed to have, reality is that we often do with much less, but 45 is certainly a valid number for a structure fire.
    Last edited by Fire304; 08-21-2004 at 02:05 AM.
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