1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by MEckert129
    Well depending how many access point you have. Remember a cellar only has one staircase leading down and basement has more then one entry/exit. Normally the 1st engine would advance a line throught the bilco doors because its the easiest way to get to the seat of the fire. Your second line shoud should run throught the front door and hold the stairs.
    I have never heard of the cellar = 1 way in, basement = 2 ways in comparison before. Where does that come from? Dictionaries list them both as "the part of a building that is wholly or partly below ground level".

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    Quote Originally Posted by PFDTruck18
    follow the truck to the fire

    good to hear others say it as well.
    Cellar fires are the only fire that we lead with the hose. Sorry, I didnt have time to read he whole thread. Are we the only dept to do this??
    Last edited by RoughRider; 10-19-2005 at 02:29 PM. Reason: Atrocious spelling
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  3. #28
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    Quote: Normally the 1st engine would advance a line throught the bilco doors because its the easiest way to get to the seat of the fire. Your second line shoud should run throught the front door and hold the stairs.
    -------------------------------------------------------------

    Keep in mind how intense and for how long that basement has been burning, also the age of the building. A neighboring dept had two Brothers killed years back when they fell through the first floor and into hell.

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    In my area, suburban Detroit, almost every house has a basement. Noone calls them cellars here, no matter how many means of egress they have. They have only 1 way in (interior stairs), limited ventilation (a few 30X15 glass block windows), are usually subdivided by homeowners whose construction does not meet code, and are stacked to the joists with combustible junk. The newer ones all have the wonderful wooden I-beams holding the floor up above them-usually with holes haphazardly drilled through them by the cable guy, homeowner, etc. Some of the new, big houses have 3000+ sq ft basements that look like banquet halls. The good thing is, not too many people in our area live down there, so OUR safety is paramount.

    First due engine stretches first line (1 3/4)to the top of interior stairs and charges it. First truck conducts forcible entry, ventilation, and search of upper floors for victims AND fire extension. Second engine feeds first (if necessary) and stretches backup line (charged 1 3/4)to stairway. Upon arrival of second line at top of stairs, first crew gets to bottom of stairs QUICKLY and attacks fire, straight stream or smoothbore only. Third engine is RIT., rescue co. secures utilities and whatever else-maybe stretch a third line for the upper floors for extension. All rigs are 1 officer/2 FFs, plus we get a BC on the alarm.

    We don't have any distributors-I think 1 station had one they used as a paperweight , and no piercing nozzles.

    Utility control is overemphasized in my dept, we almost always pull the meter and turn off the gas at structure fires. With basement fires, the electrical box is in the basement, you're standing in water, and none of the wires are protected behind drywall, so I do like to see it done quickly there.

    Venting glass block is a b!tch. Sledgehammers work though I once saw the truckies push over a 10X10 shed that was against the back of the house so they could get to the glass block window to break it. PPV can help too, but you gotta make sure it hasn't extended first. Once the fire is out, hydraulic venting works okay too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MEckert129
    Well depending how many access point you have. Remember a cellar only has one staircase leading down and basement has more then one entry/exit. Normally the 1st engine would advance a line throught the bilco doors because its the easiest way to get to the seat of the fire. Your second line shoud should run throught the front door and hold the stairs.
    Remember number 1 priority is to protect the interior stairs from vertical fire spread (at least until searches have been made)1st line should go to the interior stairs and then down to the basement. If unable to make a push down the stairs, hold fire from extending to 1st and upper floors while searches are being conducted. 2nd line should make a push from outside entrance only if 1st line couldnt make it down the stairs.It isnt always about the easiest way to the fire, but positioning a line between civilians and the fire. Always protect the interior stairs, the ones civilians and firefighters will be using to get in or get out.The rule of protecting the interior stairs applies to just about any building you respond to.
    Last edited by MattyJ; 10-24-2005 at 04:26 PM.

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by gunnyv
    Venting glass block is a b!tch. Sledgehammers work though I once saw the truckies push over a 10X10 shed that was against the back of the house so they could get to the glass block window to break it.
    Quick tip that I forgot about for glass block windows. Start at the bottom and break out the 1st (lowest) row across the entire window. From there, starting from the bottom, break ONE (vertical) column of glass blocks along the window frame (far right or far left). When you get to the top of the window a couple of well placed swings should knock out the rest of the window blocks pretty easy.

    With the bottom row and a vertical row (next to a window frame) taken out, the glass blocks have lost their integrity. Gravity will assist you and for the most part, the rest of the blocks with just fall out with a little "persuation".

    Gunnyv is correct. In my opinion the sledge or back of a flathead axe works the best for this. Anyone else with any tips on these windows?

    Keep them coming all, great stuff!
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    Most of our Basements are single entry down interior stairs with no ventilation...

    Pubs have some good basement fires, they usually have 'Drayman doors' a couple of trap doors onto the street to allow deliveries into the basement.

    Some old houses have 'Coal Chutes' which can, depending whether the coal store was linked to the basement assist with ventilation.

    Some Commercial properties with larger basements or sub basements will have pavement lights (Block windows) and may have falling mains (Standpipes)

    In most cases its just a cas eof get through the heat barrier and go for it...But, even we leave our trusty Hosereel on the machine and go for big water on these. Due to The Construction in the older inner areas of London, Basement Fires are fairly routine for us... but we have been known to F**k up...

    London lost two Guys in a 'Bread and Butter' basement job in a shop and Dwelling last summer. I discussed this somewhere else...they had a Hosereel with them and not an inch and three quarter jet... God alone knows whether the Jet would have had the flow to avert the Backdraught that killed them...but whatever, they'd have stood a better chance with that than the H/R!!!
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    SteveDude- Those helmets that you wear, I see alot of exposed necks. Is this a problem for you? Are there built in flaps or anything? Just curious.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CAPPYY
    SteveDude- Those helmets that you wear, I see alot of exposed necks. Is this a problem for you? Are there built in flaps or anything? Just curious.

    No, we have a hood that we wear around the neck and pull up when we are going in once the BA mask is on. The Helmets offer amazing protection but I personally think they affect your hearing to much. You get sound from the front amplified as it comes in and sound from behind is often lost.

    I'm sure someone somewere...particulary the manufacturers... have a scientific argument that proves otherwise, but I will stand by my personal opinion of them.

    Here is a photo of some Guys in BA with the hoods up
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    In this photo the Chief on the right is wearing his hood down, I am on the left, my hood is in my pocket...as IC I am not about to go inside the job.
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    Thanks, very interesting. In the first of the 2 pictures I notice the airtank. I hope that is a cover and not a dented tank. If a cover, does it come off before entry or is it non-flamable? Are most of your IC's this ugly? HA!

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    LOL...and that is my best side!!!!

    The cylinder covers have been used since we first started using Compressed air BA sets in the 70's.... before that we (or they, I wasn't around then) only used 'Proto' Oxygen sets.

    The sets as you can imagine get used fairly frequently in large Cities and LFB is no exception, it was decided early on to use replacable vinyl covers to offer a degree of protection to the cylinders. The photo shows a couple of guys at a large fire in a wood yard back in July...they were from an outer Station that is fairly quiet. Therefore the cylinder covers look a lot better than most.... They frequently get scorched and burnt and each Station keeps a large supply of them.

    Always a man with a photo...this is more like how you'll find them.
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    Again, thanks for the interesting info. Nice to see how others do it. If i'm not mistaken, that looks like a steel airtank. You Brits are a tough lot. Keep safe.

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    Nah, these kids today don't know they are born... the BA sets are Draegar PA 94's with a lightweight carbon composite cylinder.

    Pah!!! When we had the old Siebe Gorman Firefighter BA set they had steel Cylinders...
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    The last cellar fire we had in our district was New Years Day 1989 and we have not had any since then, thank God (and knock on wood). It was by far and away the nastiest, hottest fire I've ever been in. There was only one way in and out of the place and it had no windows. Zero visibility, smoke banked down to the floor, no ventilation, and blow torch heat. Conditions were so horrible that we almost had to pull out.

    If I never face another cellar fire for the rest of my career, I'll be a very happy man.

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