Thread: 3D FOG attack

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    Default 3D FOG attack

    We just finished 2 days of instruction about 3D fog attack.
    It was quiet inmpressive how good this tacktics works to prevent flashover.
    But it was just a first impression and we don't use this in real firefighting yet.
    So, i wonder, if one of you have more experience with this then we do, and what do you think about this?
    *The BOSS rules*

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    Default 3D fog attack

    Hi, would you please say a little more about what this is?

    This past weekend, we burned down an acquired structure for training. I saw one of the fellows swinging the nozzle around in a loop, using a fog pattern. It worked well for him. Is this what you're talking about also? If not, sorry for the distraction. If so, is this something new?

    *inquiring minds want to know*

    Thanks,
    Amy

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    Hey Zippo

    Is this what you are talking about: http://users.tpg.com.au/sraffel/index.htm

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    Default 3D Firefighting

    The term 3D Firefighting was coined by Paul Grimwood (London Fire Brigade Ret.) to emphasize the three-dimensional threat presented by compartment fires. These concepts includes (but is not limited to) reading critical fire behavior indicators and controlling the fire environment through cooling of the hot gases with water fog and effective use of ventilation tactics.

    Additional sources of information related to 3D Firefighting on the web include:

    www.firetactics.com
    www.3Dfirefighting.com
    www.cfbt-us.com

    Cheers,
    Ed Hartin, MS, EFO, MIFireE

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    Default thanks!

    Thanks Hartin, very interesting info!
    I am currently in 120-hour class and am going to ask about this when we get to Fire Control. In my vollie class they didn't bring this up, but some of the folks on our department think this is a great approach.

    Thanks again.
    Amy

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    enginegirl1, I don't think you will find many "basic" firefighting classes that teach the 3D method. It's a bit more advanced than most beginner/basic classes.

    Not a bad thing to learn about though.
    "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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    Enginegirl1, i think this answers your question,right.
    Thanks for the links added, geinandputitout, and hartin.
    This method is new to us, and will be teached to new ship crew members who take part in the "sfp"(standing fire party).
    One of the benifits of this method is that the use of water is much less, wich improves the stability of a ship at sea while fighting fires.
    Untill now, we only used this technique on structure fires and not on fuel fires.
    I'm sure there is more to come on this.
    *The BOSS rules*

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    Default 3D Information

    While these methods are often seen as advanced, we teach the concepts and techniques in our probationary academy as well as at the local community college in firefighting skills classes.

    I served on the validation committee for the IFSTA Essentials of Firefighting (5th edition) which is due out in July and the chapters on fire behavior, fire streams, fire control, and tactical ventilation have all been expanded to provide both a solid foundation in fire behavior and basic fire dynamics as well as coverage of a full range of fire control tactics (addressing both use of water fog and solid/straight streams effectively).

    Our regional training association has been offering Compartment Fire Behavior Instructor Training (CFBT) Instructor courses since 2004 and a number of agencies in the state (Oregon) and throughout the west coast have begun to develop programs to improve their members fire behavior knowledge and introduce 3D firefighting tactics (as another set of tools for the toolbox).

    Cheers,
    Ed Hartin, MS, EFO, MIFireE

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    3D despite the use of the word "fog" which will cause reflexive caniptions in some is largely in-line with "traditional" urban U.S. smoothbore tactics. It does start from the perspective of UK / European tactics where smaller flow handlines and better built/compartmentalized buildings then you see in the U.S. predominate.

    The tactic Enginegirl was describing goes under several names, I prefer "Direct Fog Attack" as that's what I was originally taught. Due to changes in technology and typical conditions today it's a tactic that can be safely removed from the tool box (yes, that's an official change of position by yours truly).

    Prior to PPV, screwing up a DFA was the most efficient way to burn down a house. However, it was developed for a specific need and met that need well for many years.

    When Lloyd Layman laid out Indirect Fog Attack for unoccupied compartment fires, it was embraced heavily by the rural fire service. Back in that day, a truck carrying 500 gallons of water was considered very large, 1.5" tank-to-pump plumbing was common, LDH was almost unheard of in the U.S., and a 250gpm tanker shuttle would be worthy of a write up in a national trade journal. By limiting ventilation and smothering a fire with steam the rural guys had half a chance of accomplishing something with very limited resources.

    The IFA principles were morphed into DFA -- which took advantage of the "pushing" effect of a fog stream (especially when "swirling") to push fire gases and steam out ahead of the nozzle team. It works very well on a room & contents fire, and can work well in a situation you understand were the fire is and where you're pushing it (which better damn well be a vent hole!).

    And it did so using much less water and lower water flows then "traditional" smoothbore / straightstream tactics did. At a time rural America was learning how to move water. It pre-dates the involvement of NFPA in adding to the apparatus standards items like tank-to-pump plumbing requirements. Testing of "state of the art" trucks to help quantify what was the minimum that should be in place involved timing how long it took to fill 55 gallon drums. Yes -- the flows were low enough they'd measure it by using a couple 55 gallon drums, filling one while dumping out the other. Today it would be ridiculous to think you could measure water flow from an Engine-Tanker in my area where dual 3" / single 4" / and increasingly today dual 4" tank-to-pump plumbing is standard. 50+ years ago you unless you spec'd it bigger, the manufacturers would use an 1.5" fill line...if you were lucky.

    It has many of the drawbacks of PPV -- if you don't really understand the situation, you can push the fire were you don't expect to. And you can push fire that's somewhat remote from the nozzle so it's being pushed without a sufficient water flow right there to knock it down.

    But when you simply didn't have the water flow to use other tactics reliabily or handle an increase in fire size by aggressive ventilation, it offered the best results despite associated problems and drawbacks.

    The amount of water we (should) carry to make an initial attack has increased, and sustaining 150gpm-300gpm fireflows to support a couple handlines working a direct, straight stream attack should be child's play for today's fire service even in rural areas where our Grandfather's who struggled.

    We also have finally, after playing with various options like high-pressure fog, settled on a very effective technology to improve the effectiveness of limited water and stretch the supply which is Class A foam -- especially used in conjunction with CAFS.

    It's not 1957, and today you shouldn't have to be trying to put out half a house with 700 gallons of water. Although with CAFS, you have a good shot at doing it...

    There's a huge difference between what Enginegirl described in swirling the nozzle, and the application of short bursts seen in 3D firefighting. Despite the word "fog" coming up in both, there very, very different tactics.

    Matt

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dalmatian190 View Post

    There's a huge difference between what Enginegirl described in swirling the nozzle, and the application of short bursts seen in 3D firefighting. Despite the word "fog" coming up in both, there very, very different tactics.

    Matt
    Hey Matt Yes Dalmation is most certainly correct. 3D water-fog applications (short bursts or 'pulses' of fine water droplets) offer a useful way of dealing with dangerous gases and heated smoke layers in the overhead on the approach route to the fire. These tactics excel in stairshafts where they can be used to extinguish flaming gas layers. However, they are also useful in rooms and hallways. Be aware that these fog applications are not intended as a substitute for high-flow direct hitting straight stream attacks! They provide a means of making safe our approach routes to the main fire. They also offer some element of control over the fire environment in dealing with thermal stratification and maintaining thermal balance.

    3D fog tactics have limitations and it is only through accredited training that you can learn this approach. Ed Hartin's training program in Oregon is undoubtedly the most advanced I have seen in the USA when teaching the 3D techniques. I have personally worked with Ed over here in the UK and in other countries. I know he has also trained with Swedish firefighters using these techniques.

    3D Firefighting is not just about fog tactics but as Ed states, it proides a strong learning platform upon which firefighters can truly get to grips with fire behaviour from a practical stand-point; learning how fires grow; develop; react and behave whilst learning methods to control and counter any rapid fire development is what 3D is all about.

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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MlJG7yT8nI8

    When I mentioned earlier that mis-use of Direct Fog Attack was the best tactical screw-up a FD could do in the days before PPV to spread a fire.

    ***TO EMPHASIZE: That's NOT 3D...but it's to reinforce what Enginegirl was asking about if what she saw was...***

    Little did I know a few days later I'd come across a video posted that has the single best depiction caught on tape of that priniciple in action.

    Watch what happens from 4:50 to 5:15 in the video.

    The tapes worthy of it's own thread, which I think I'll open.

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    Thanks for all the replies. I read all this with the most interest and i came to the conclusion that we need a lot more training and exercise before we put this method into action.
    But as i said it was just a 2 days training and the 3D tactics where just introduced to us.
    And this was the theory :
    For acurate use of the tactics you need :
    - Waterdrops of about 0.3 to 0.4 mm
    - There should be no contact of the water with the sealing and the walls
    - The right "pulse"technique : 0.1-0.5 sec
    - The the fogcone should be 60°
    - and the nozzle should be held at an angle of 45°
    - The waterflow should be set to +- 100l/min
    (we use the Acron Turbo Jet)
    Now, this is what was told during classn and i hope that is was right what they told us. But i think people like Paul and Ed are the right guys to agree or disagree on this.

    I contacted our commander at the FDCC(Fire and dammage control center) for the Belgian Navy, and he read this and agreed that it was to early to introduce this tactic as part of our instruction.
    He thinks about sending instructors to England in order to get more training about these tactics. (How long this will take? That is the question).

    My Captain at my FD is very keen on learning more about this, but has to raise the fonds to allow us to get the best training.

    one more thing i learned, I need more English classes before I start threads like these.
    Jerry
    *The BOSS rules*

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    Wink

    By the way, if you are planning to use FOG in a structure fire, do me a favor and carry a bag of clams with ya. I loves steamed clams.

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    Default interesting!

    Thanks everyone. VERY interesting info.

    Last year, my fire instructor threatened us with death if we dared to use a fog pattern in our live burns. He said we would steam everyone in the room (Cappyy, I love clams too). This put the fear of God above in me - I turned into a straight-stream, hit-the-seat believer. And it worked.

    So, then when we were burning the acquired structure last week and a buddy on the department started swirling that nozzle around, I was stunned. I had just used a straight stream in a small upstairs bedroom, heavy contents (couch, pallets, straw), medium flames and smoke. He gave me lots of grief about that, saying I was blasting the contents all around with the forceful stream and that a fog pattern would do just as well and use less water. This is my friend and he has lots more experience than I do, so I didn't blast HIM with the straight stream like I felt like doing. :-)

    In any case, I understand that you are not promoting wholesale use of fog, but that short bursts can be beneficial. I look forward to more training on this as it becomes available.

    As for that video....opening that garage door might not have been the greatest choice, eh?

    Thanks again - lots of food for thought.
    Stay safe,
    Amy

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    @cappy : "Structurefire" was maybe a wrong choise of words, "compartment fires" would be better i think.
    And yes steam is created, but what they thought us was, to check if the gasses are coold down enough to advance, you give a shot into the smoke and if the water doesn't come down (but evaporate) then the smoke is still to hot.
    But as i said, Paul and Ed are the specialist about this, i was just checking if what we where told was right.
    *The BOSS rules*

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    Yes, I agree there are times you can use the fog on a contents fire, BUT... you must be able to pull the door closed after you have steamed the room, and I mean close it fast! Also, no one else must be in a position to be effected by your steam! Above, or in the next room with an opening, you may end up cooking their clams.

    Be safe.

    enginegirl1- I may steam my way thru 100 fires, but if I screw up just once, OUCH!

    STRAIGHT STREAM FOR FIRES AND FOG TO VENT- OLD SCHOOL, MY SCHOOL!!!

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    Enginegirl:

    Go to firetactics.com and see exactly what Paul is advocating. I have used 3D fog (some would call it pulse fog) a couple times and it does work in the correct situation. Using a straight stream to cool the gases and the ceiling works also, so if you don't want to use 3D fog don't use it. 3D fog is just another tool in the toolbox. I've read his book and Mr Grimwood knows of what he speaks.

    This isn't just dumping a fog stream into a room and closing the door. 3D fog has a science to it and limitations. I would suggest you try it in a training burn 1st through a window a couple times to see what it does after learning the proper technique. Paul is talking very little water, so you don't upset the thermal layer. Using that 1700:1, steam to water ratio properly is the key.

    Your instructor was right that you don't use fog. Especially if it was a class for newer firefighters. And Dal190 who's opinion and knowledge of the job I respect was right to point out what you saw was definitely not 3D fog.

    Good luck
    FTM-PTB-EGH-RTB

    Stay low, keep pushing in, and stay safe.

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    Default "Fog Attack" by Paul Grimwood

    I have had the pleasure of corresponding with Mr. Grimwood in the past and purchasing his book "Fog Attack". The book is very insightful and gives a more "European" look at firefighting methods and tactics. I believe that these methods are part of a competent officer's toolbox and have a functional place if applied correctly. However, without proper training they can be dangerous and counter-productive. The book, at one time, was available at the web-site stated in earlier threads, a good reference, especially the chapter on positive pressure ventilation. The links on the web-site are also interesting in particular the studies from Sweden on ventilation versus flammable ranges and the US Navy experiments with fog nozzles in compartmental firefighting. As in being successful in any game, it often comes down to choosing the right play for the situation. No one tactic fits the bill every time.

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    What does the pump operator think of havin 5 lines out and everybodys jerkin their nozzles on and off, on and off, on and off, maintaining a 1700:1 steam ratio?

    Watch you back when he comes in and belts you in the mouth with his helmet!

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    Cappy:

    If you've got five lines off, I doubt that the fire is at a stage where 3D fog is useful. Most times it's used to delay or prevent, flashover &/or rollover. The couple times I've used it was when I was protecting a search team, keeping the thermal layer and steam high. Others may use it for extinguishment, but IMO it's not very useful for that operation, but to each his own.

    Straight stream can work just as well, but in it's own way. And honestly if I have the opportunity to pull the lay on my rig with the smooth bore on it(300ft is alot of hose), I'm gonna. It's just when I gotta use those %#^& TFT's on the crosslays that I can consider the method that has been discussed.

    As I said yesterday if you don't want to use 3D fog don't use it.
    FTM-PTB-EGH-RTB

    Stay low, keep pushing in, and stay safe.

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    And I might suggest that no Rookie is gonna be on the knob for any fire that might require imminent flashover prevention deep inside a building.

    I sure won't let a rookie "learn" on the big ones. The senior guys and line officers are first-in on those, and they are the folks that this type of training/technique is aimed at.

    Rookies can learn (with supervision) in the burn building, and on room & contents, and surround and drown fires.
    Never argue with an Idiot. They drag you down to their level, and then beat you with experience!

    IACOJ

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    I battled long and hard with Paul Grimwood the last time this topic came up and upon further review let me say this...Use this technique if you want to, don't use it if you don't want to. But if you are uninformed on what this is listen to those that know it and use it and have a more open mind than I did in the previous topic.

    FyredUp

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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    I battled long and hard with Paul Grimwood the last time this topic came up and upon further review let me say this...Use this technique if you want to, don't use it if you don't want to. But if you are uninformed on what this is listen to those that know it and use it and have a more open mind than I did in the previous topic.

    FyredUp
    Yes we battled hard on this very topic bro But I find myself in agreement with all you say here. 3D Fog definitely is a tactic that you need training in. It is not a method for every approach and Resqb is also right - if there are five lines in then we may be way beyond 'pulsing' and cooling gases. 3D fog is most DEFINITELY the way to go in stair-shafts, or high ceiling areas where the fog droplets are able to penetrate way into the hot gases or flaming combustion, without striking the compartment's surfaces, allowing the expanding steam to rise away from the nozzle operator whilst it has even more beneficial effects as it heads upwards.

    In smaller rooms the fog applications need careful management that can only come through training.

    It's worth noting that steam expansion at the ceiling of a post flashover area can be in the region of 6000-1 (not 1600-1)! 3d Fog is about making certain we don't misapply the water, taking care to introduce the right sized droplet into the correct regions of a room. A stair-shaft fire or high ceiling is somewhat more forgiving to the untrained eye in this respect. That's how I first learned and perfected the techniques myself.

    Nearly all fire streams will create steam and upset thermal stratification if applied over zealously, whatever their pattern or form.

    Fyredup - did I detect a change of heart bro or was that a typo

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    Paul,

    Fyredup - did I detect a change of heart bro or was that a typo
    I agree that this may be a viable tactic under certain circumstances and I have done something similar to this myself. I am a strong believer in as little water into the overhead as necessary unless there is continuing flame overhead. Even then, eliminating the origin of the problem usually eliminates the overhead fire problem unless structural elements are involved in fire.

    I am still concerned with comments made by you in the last topic on this regarding training issues with the LFB (no this is not a slam on the great firefighters of the LFB so don't take it that way) and wonder if this technique expects an experience and training level that may be almost impossible to attain in some cases today. In my mind there is a massive difference between teaching pulsing in the relatively clean environment of a flashover simulator and actually putting it into practice in the dark, smoky intensity of a tenemant stairwell.

    The problem during our previous debate on this had less to do with the subject matter than my feeling of your condescending attitude towards my experiences and training.

    Stay safe,

    FyredUp

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    FyredUp

    Firstly its good to talk with you again! We have debated good 'n' hard for eight years on this forum and I have ALWAYS valued your experience an input.

    I think you took personally to some strong remarks that were made against reducing firefighter losses in the US whilst comparing to a lower life loss rate in the UK. We all feel passionately here in these respects and I wish to assure you that at no time have I intended to insinuate or suggest that your own (personal) experience and training were suspect. I further never intend to appear as condescending on these forums to ANYONE. If I do I apologise. I really appreciate debating and learning from firefighters on these forums and if I can share some of my own experiences then great.

    The two issues of concern you have are definitely ones I had early on also. I feel that we approach this on a wider spectrum that is normally discussed on these forums. By that I mean our approach to 3D Firefighting goes way beyond pulsing fog patterns. As Ed has always said, the basic foundation of 3D tactics is based on fire behavior and the influences tactical venting actions might have on changing fire development. We demonstrate these effects in the simulators and teach fire behavior/venting actions in a safe controlled environment. The student gets pretty much the same show every time which means that we can condition WHAT we want to teach; as opposed to training fires in real structures which are limited by repeatability; are somewhat unpredictable and are reliant on who gets what experience, depending on who was at the nozzle and who was on the roof etc.

    We train to anticipate fire development; to counter fire development; and to recognise most of all the various ways fire gases can form, accumulate, transport and ignite under a wide range of scenarios. At the root of all this we use pulsing or bursting fog patterns.

    Having said all that I am a big believer in straight stream high flow fire attack! But I agree with you - learn to use the water in the right amounts and where it is most needed.

    'An experience and training level that is almost impossible to attain' Well I would say that is down to available budget - time and - desire. Yes we have identified a clear training need that is beyond doubt. Whether we have the cash or time to teach our firefighters these advanced techniques or the desire to do so .... that's another long hard debate.

    'There is massive difference between teaching pulsing in the relatively clean environment of a flashover simulator and actually putting it into practice in the dark, smoky intensity of a tenemant stairwell' Oh absolutely! Even some of our instructors begin to believe that what they achieve in the simulators makes them 'supermen'!

    A real house fire is at least twice to five times as intense as that experienced in a simulator! But we can't expect to train at such high intensity but simply recognise it as you so rightly have. Actually, we don't train in stairshafts as we don't have the facility. Although a good training tower might be adapted to provide such a training opportunity! I learned the 3D technique in stairshafts through real fire trial and error! Actually, as I said, there is a lot less 'error' in a stairshaft fires as these nozzle techniques are so well suited to such an environment.

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