1. #26
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    Around this time about 9 years ago, A local liquor store was torched. The 3 man engine crew arrived to find fire blowing out the front almost to the street. The store was in a strip center. The Lt. at the time ordered the deck gun opened up with marvelous results. A large amount of the fire was knocked down and as help arrived, handlines were deployed and an interior attack was made. I thought at the time it was an excellent call on the officers part. I still do to this day. Its all about doing the most good with what you have. As a rule we do not use our pre-piped deck gun on an initial attack. But each situation is different and you do what you have to when necessary.
    IAFF-IACOJ PROUD

  2. #27
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    Lightbulb defensive/offensive attack

    truck 61 your post broke the ice!
    using a deck gun (large calaber/gpm appliance) initially on a well involved structure fire from the outside would be considered a defensive operation but in this tactic it is considered a defensive/offensive attack to gain some control of the fires headway by reducing the btu's and knocking down the volume of fire to make that offensive push to do a primary search and offensive attack with handlines. using a smoth bore tip the thermal balance in the interior is not disturbed and the fire not moved about.
    you read time and time again how firefighters were driven back because of the HEAT and smoke, this is one way to reduce that heat! in FF1 you are tought about hydralic ventilation and thermal balance, fog pattern out the window moves smoke and air disturbing the thermal balance, smoth bore out the window moves no smoke or air not disturbing the thermal balance. as ffred said we need to search and get in to extinguish the fire is true but if your initial conditions will not allow this the defensive/offensive attack works extreamly well. please remember the fire conditions and time of day determine weather a search and rescue is succsesfull. IF YOU CAN'T GET IN YOU CAN'T SEARCH AND RESCUE ! "BASICS" without tunnelvision the hardest decesion an officer has to make at a working fire is to determine the servivablity of occupants and the potential loss of firefighters going in.

    "there is no greater family outside our own than the brotherhood of firefighters"

    LT. Dennis

    At no time should firefighters be inside when large volume appliances are being used from the exterior.
    Last edited by maximumflow; 01-28-2006 at 03:00 AM.

  3. #28
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    In a volunteer department, the deck gun is an excellent tool for initial attack. There have been more than one time where I have arrived solo or with only 1 other firefighter on the truck to find a well involved structure fire with mutual aid still a good 10 minutes (or more) out. While not the best situation, the deck gun can knock down enough fire to buy you the time for enough personnel to arrive to safetly begin interior operations.

    There have been cases where it has worked, and cases where the results has been less than perfect, but, the important thing was that using this tatic kept my firefighters safe in a potentially bad situation. I would rather use this technique, and fail, then send in an understaffed crew and risk losing them to simply save property or lives that in all probablility, are already lost. In all cases I would love to pull up with a fully staffed truck, but the deck gun can be an excellent "holding tool" to do something until additional staff arrives. If nothing else, it works as a good PR tool, as you are not "doing nothing" until the additional personnel arrive.

    It also makes an excellent tool, as other posters have ementioned at brush, auto and trash fires when staffing is lacking.

  4. #29
    firefighter7160
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    Talking First attack???

    No way, unless you have it in your mind that a interior attack is not going to be done. Plus all that water damage. That house better be fully involved.

  5. #30
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    OK time to work on this some more. !st this is not to be used while doing an interior attack (sorry forgot to mention that in the first posting) this is being done while someone is leading out the line. This method is to be used to knock down or suppress the heavy amount of fire that if not knocked down you would not be able to enter the building anyway. Next who ever mentioned the defensive to offensive attack I applaud you I forgot to mention that simple phrase also. This is simply putting enough water to break up the BTU's and without BTU's the fire is going to be suppressed. This tactic is very awsome to watch when it works and it's very rewarding because it's very much thinking out of the box.

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    Several comments from the previous posts. As mentioned this exterior application of a master stream works best when properly selected. Best results will be when there is a fully involved fire compartment, room or two, garage etc. The chasing fire from window to window is not because the tactic doesn't work, but rather that there is significant fire beyond the compartment you are hitting. A stream will not push a room and contents fire from one bedroom to another if applied properly, ie shutting down when darkening of the original fire room is achieved. If the room dosent darken down then you need more water and/or better placement, not less water. Thermal balance? In a room that is flashed over the entire room is above ignition temp and not compatable with life. Remember that is how you are getting the stream into the fire room, thru the window the fire is venting from. Fire that pops out at you from the next window tells you that the second room, along with the connecting space, ie hallway is involved. As far as water damage is concerned, If applied correctly, ie until the fire darkens, then reassessed, the water damage will be less, as the total gallons will be less. The rate of application is greater to achieve quicker knock down, but shorter time means less water used. You could pour water onto the fire at less than the required flow for knock down until you run out of water and have no water damage but burn the building down. Been there done that, got the shirt. Figure the required fire flows for the standard home in your area, and then ask yourself that if the required flow is 200 to 250 gpm (generous) how come we run out of water before knocking down the fire when we arrive with several 1000 gallon attack engines? Follow Colin Powell's advice, attack with overwhelming force, it makes for a shorter battle.
    Capt406, IACOJ#780

  7. #32
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    December 6, 2005 TVFD was dispatched to a structure fire at the home of one of our own. He was at work over an hour away at the time of the fire. Luckily, his family managed to evacuate and were waiting in the front yard for us.

    When we arrived, the right side of the home was fully involved (we could actually see the fire from a mile away) and had vented the roof, but the left side was still salvageable. Because of the time of day, we were seriously shorthanded, with only three on the initial engine. A firefighter and I made the initial attack through the front door, attempting to push the fire back to the right and try to head left. We'd get the fire to black out, but within seconds it was going again. It wasn't until the second company pulled a second line were we able to get the fire stopped, but by then it was too late.

    I've second guessed myself on this fire, wondering what we could have done if we would have deckgunned the right side while the initial crew attacked the left....

  8. #33
    truckmonkey42
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    Default Strip Malls

    Somone above posted

    "Around this time about 9 years ago, A local liquor store was torched. The 3 man engine crew arrived to find fire blowing out the front almost to the street. The store was in a strip center. The Lt. at the time ordered the deck gun opened up with marvelous results. A large amount of the fire was knocked down and as help arrived, handlines were deployed and an interior attack was made. I thought at the time it was an excellent call on the officers part. I still do to this day. Its all about doing the most good with what you have. As a rule we do not use our pre-piped deck gun on an initial attack. But each situation is different and you do what you have to when necessary."

    Very good post about this. Under "MOST" circumstances I would say not to use deck gun on any residential attack, but in a strip center this is an excellent technique to knock down a large amount of fire and then use handlines to attack the rest. We practice opening the deck gun for about 30 seconds (500 gpm,using about 250 gallons of our 500 gallon tank) The that leaves 250 or so. Of course this depends on amount of fire, common attic space, time of day, etc.
    I would say that you need to go out and actually see how much water you can flow in 30 seconds with this tactic. It is much more than you think. And now most engines have at least 750 gallon tanks so that is even better.

  9. #34
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    Let us not be afraid to use a deck gun or an ariel to slow the fire, with this said that means a hand line needs to be getting ready or making its way to the fire. To strictly use a deck gun, I think you would be better off doing nothing. At least then you have an excuse for the fire getting bigger.

  10. #35
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    or blowing it through an apartment ?
    IACOJ both divisions and PROUD OF IT !
    Pardon me sir.. .....but I believe we are all over here !
    ATTENTION ALL SHOPPERS: Will the dead horse please report to the forums.(thanks Motown)
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    LETHA' FOREVA' ! 010607
    I'm sorry, I haven't been paying much attention for the last 3 hours.....what were we discussing?
    "but I guarentee you I will FF your arse off" from>
    http://www.firehouse.com/forums/show...60#post1137060post 115

  11. #36
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    There are 2 primary reasons why people achieve less than adequate fire streams while using a deck gun during a "blitz attack."

    #1. They use the deck gun to achieve "big water", but leave the smallest tip on the gun.

    #2. They use the 1 3/4" or 2" tip while operating from the tank. The 750-1000 GPM flow respectively would be great, but the plumbing form the tank most times will only supply 500 gpm.

    The lesson: While operating a deck gun from tank water, you need to use the 1 1/2" tip.

    Going on a run, more to follow.........maybe.......
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    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

  12. #37
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    I figure it depends on what you have. We've used them on everything from garage fires, to brush/grass fires. Yes they work, but it all depends on what you have going. I'd never use it if there was a possibility of a trapped party. Nusiance fires are a different story, wouldn't think twice about it on a car, brush, dumpster etc. fire. It has it's place, as most have said it's another tool to use, as long as it's used properly.
    FF/NREMT-B

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    I wish I had the extra manpower to do both, deck gun and taking a line in.

  14. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by ffchun
    I wish I had the extra manpower to do both, deck gun and taking a line in.
    You would do both? Uhhhhhh......well......you do that. Tell ya what, I'll even be at the front door feeding line in, you can take the nozzle, won't even fight ya for it.
    FF/NREMT-B

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    Brass does not equal brains.

    Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the ability to control it.

  15. #40
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    My department, and a couple surrounding departments use the deck gun tactic on initial attack based soully on initial size up of the fire. It may or may not be used. It has worked two or three times recently that I can recall, knocking down the main body of fire, and having the interior guys knock down the rest with handlines. All structures were saved and not made into parking lots.

  16. #41
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    My department, and a couple surrounding departments use the deck gun tactic on initial attack based soully on initial size up of the fire. It may or may not be used. It has worked two or three times recently that I can recall, knocking down the main body of fire, and having the interior guys knock down the rest with handlines. All structures were saved and not made into parking lots.
    I dont think the arguement against deck guns is necessarily about saving the structure. When you operate that into a window or door, you are writing off any chance of finding viable victims in that building.

    would I use the deck gun first for offensive attack, sure. With a crew inside, no. Would I like to have line stretched, search going on, coordinated venting and then attack with a handline, sure. But with 2 men on the engine first in, no hydrants, fire showing from the front window (no survivours in a flashed over room, it just doesnt happen)
    Just because fire is showing out a window does not mean the room has flashed over. I have seen a fire coming out square from a window, only to get inside the room and have a bunk bed burning. JUST the bunk bed. The rest of the large room was very livable, because the windows gave so fast and drew the fire away. I understand the idea because of severe short staffing, but to say you wont do it with a crew inside because of a danger, why take the chance of killing a possible viable victim?
    Proud East Coast Traditionalist.

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    Please someone explain the writting off victoms by using the deck gun. If the victom is in another room or on another floor how does the use of a deck gun ruin their surviability chance? Even if a victom is lying on a bed and the room is going and you hit the ceiling from the outside with a deck gun the chances of that victom being mortaly injured by the deck gun rather than inhaling the CO from smoke as the fire increases in size is slim to none. REMEMBER: using a fog nozzle on a deck gun will do a lot more damage than a smooth bore. The smooth bore will reduce BTU's but not disturb the thermal balance where a fog will make the droplets expand 1700 times it size and steam burn the people in the area as well as push the fire around to other areas of the building

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by TRUCK61
    Please someone explain the writting off victoms by using the deck gun. If the victom is in another room or on another floor how does the use of a deck gun ruin their surviability chance? Even if a victom is lying on a bed and the room is going and you hit the ceiling from the outside with a deck gun the chances of that victom being mortaly injured by the deck gun rather than inhaling the CO from smoke as the fire increases in size is slim to none. REMEMBER: using a fog nozzle on a deck gun will do a lot more damage than a smooth bore. The smooth bore will reduce BTU's but not disturb the thermal balance where a fog will make the droplets expand 1700 times it size and steam burn the people in the area as well as push the fire around to other areas of the building
    The ability for the human lungs to withstand heated air decrease as the humidity increases. Hot dry air is very tollerable up to extreemly high temps...add in moisture the threshold drops and burns will occur. These are undisputable facts.

    Also any stream will push the fire around to some degree or another...especially one with as much force as a large caliber stream from a stang or deck gun.

    It is a universal rule that firemen aren't allowed on the fire floor when a LCS is used...why should it be any different for potential victims?

    FTM-PTB

    PS-Nycktfbl's comments illustrate why it would appear those with minimal experience and qualifications are developing these procedures...anyone with any relevant expereince such as his knows what looks like a good job from the outside...many times ends up being much smaller in reality.
    Last edited by FFFRED; 03-06-2006 at 07:33 AM.

  19. #44
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    Deck guns just ruin a good lead out!
    I am a complacent liability to the fire service

  20. #45
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    Yeah but deck guns are so safe! I dont have to commit to the fire dwelling! All I have to do it open the gun and wait for the fire to either go out or burn thru the roof. Aggressive FFers say I dont save anything. I disagree! You can always rebuild on the foundation I save.
    Just another one of the 99%ers looking up.

  21. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by PFDTruck18
    Yeah but deck guns are so safe! I dont have to commit to the fire dwelling! All I have to do it open the gun and wait for the fire to either go out or burn thru the roof. Aggressive FFers say I dont save anything. I disagree! You can always rebuild on the foundation I save.
    Yeah, that's what I say-- stay out of those burning buildings, a guy could get hurt or something.

  22. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by nyckftbl
    Just because fire is showing out a window does not mean the room has flashed over. I have seen a fire coming out square from a window, only to get inside the room and have a bunk bed burning. JUST the bunk bed. The rest of the large room was very livable, because the windows gave so fast and drew the fire away. I understand the idea because of severe short staffing, but to say you wont do it with a crew inside because of a danger, why take the chance of killing a possible viable victim?
    You mean like summertime when the windows are open?? Simple fire out the window is indicitive of nothing but there is a confirmed fire. Volume and 'force' of fire out the window is a different thing. Similar to your bunk bed theory, we had a fire a few summers back and the first arriving cop was screaming "tell the fire dept to hurry up this thing is cooking its already blowing out the window" Myself and my partner got inside, the bedroom door was closed. Opened it up and found the TV malfunctioned, caught fire along with the book case that was being used as a TV Stand and the curtains. All these things together put the height of the said TV at the window sill and needless to say the fire went right through the screen and out the window. I think it was all of about 90 seconds of water and we were done.

    I still standby the situation dictates the tactic. The one time we used it on the car fire in the garage I mentioned earlier worked great for an initial knockdown while crews flaked out their handlines to go in and finish it off and mop up. As soon as their lines were charged, the deck gun was off and they advanced into the garage. Just have a sustained water supply at the ready because as most of us know these things use big amounts of water real quick.

  23. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by FFTrainer
    I still standby the situation dictates the tactic. The one time we used it on the car fire in the garage I mentioned earlier worked great for an initial knockdown while crews flaked out their handlines to go in and finish it off and mop up. As soon as their lines were charged, the deck gun was off and they advanced into the garage. Just have a sustained water supply at the ready because as most of us know these things use big amounts of water real quick.

    I have been to a bunch of these.....never needed a deck gun......nothing a 1.75" couldn't handle from the interior.......or a 2.5" for a couple of cars......

    A situation I would use it on.........a fire building 100% invovled and causing an exposure problem. Stretch to the most exposed exposure, and operate the deck pipe on the original bldg.....a REAL good move would be for the ECC to stretch a dry line to the next seriously exposed building, and leave it for the next due engine.....if practical.

    Just my experiance and opinion......

    I am a firm believer that the sky doesn't burn.....fire out windows=good. Half of my job is done.....

  24. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by VinnieB
    I am a firm believer that the sky doesn't burn.....fire out windows=good. Half of my job is done.....
    I would think it would stand a chance of it in the Bronx!?!?

    I agree with that part. It generally makes for an easy job of getting in and keep pushing the smoke and heat out the window it already started out of on its own.

    The situation we used it on was 2 cars in the garage with a 4 man engine including the driver as the first arriving unit along with a 3 man truck(true truck, no water or pump!) and a hydrant at the front of the fire building. The IC opted for a quick hit by the engine using the deck gun and 1 FF while the other two flaked the line. All residents accounted for standing with patrol. Truck guys secured the interior door connecting the living area to the garage. It worked for us that day.

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    I think it's yet another tactic to have on hand for situations where you have a probie that can't find the bolt cutters or the owner fumbles the keys to the fence and you got to get this fire knocked back and save the exposure.
    We had all that happen last summer at my old department and while most of us looked at the trailer getting knocked off its foundation with the response of"Kewel!",it did put the fire back enough that we found the cutters,and got a 2"line stretched while the second due rig ran out their hydrant line and fed us water to finish the job.We did lose the trailer we had been called about due to the delay in getting the gate open but the lot owner's home(the taxpayer)was saved with just some scorched and melted siding.
    You might not need this tactic at every fire but then we don't need the BLS bag at every run either but it stays in the compartment for when you DO need it,right?Like I said at first,it's another tactic that you have up your sleeve because I don't think any of us likes to lose more than we have to on this job.

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