Drill of the Week: Hose Handling II

This week's drill builds on some of the skills covered in Hose Handling I. The running theme of the two drills is teamwork. Hose Handling II covers maneuvering a hoseline and developing the teamwork necessary to direct it. Not all of us are in the best shape, nor are all of us built like Rocky. When your backup man isn't working to compensate for the pressure at the nozzle, you'll know it, and you'll be spent sooner.

To conduct the drill, you'll need:

  • A flat, level parking area with a good water source and good drainage;
  • Eight cinder blocks, painted white, to use as goal line markers;
  • A pumper with a gated wye, four lengths of 1 1/2- or 1 3/4-inch hose, and two matched nozzles;
  • Empty 55-gallon drum with a top plug (no side plugs);
  • Video camera;
  • A whistle for the training officer.

Howard A. Chatteron includes a figure of what the field should look like in his Volunteer Training Drills-A Year of Weekly Drills.

Place the 55-gallon drum on its side to be pushed across the goal line by a hose stream. Start the drum in the center of the field. If it goes out of bounds, restart it at the center field position. If the drum is too lively, put some water inside to deaden its motion. If it's too slow, use a five-gallon can instead. Use a whistle to stop the action. Have a safety officer, stationed at the gated wye, who can stop the water flow if the hose streams get out of control.

If you have videotaped the drill, review the following:

  • How well did the teams keep the line straight behind the nozzle operator?
  • Did the nozzleman have enough line out in front of him to control the nozzle, or did it get pulled back to his armpit?
  • What happened when the teams tried to back up the line?
  • Were members spaced out well along the hoseline, or where they all bunched up and tripping over it?

At the drill's conclusion, discuss what went right, what went wrong, and what should be done differently next time.

If you have a similar drill idea, and wish to share it, please e-mail: chrism@pennwell.com.

To review training officer and safety officer considerations, visit http://fe.pennnet.com/Articles/Article_Display.cfm?Section=OnlineArticles&SubSection=HOME&PUBLICATION_ID=25&ARTICLE_ID=202453 to review training officer and safety officer considerations.

For more information on this drill, including a list of references and figure, visit http://store.yahoo.com/pennwell/voltraindril.html to purchase Volunteer Training Drills--A Year of Weekly Drills.

Next week's drill: Hose Testing

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