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Aerial Use at Fires in a Row of Stores

Tue, 19 Jun 2012|

Mike Wilbur describes how firefighters can use aerial devices to perform a sort of "inverted trench cut" to effectively deal with fires in rows of stores.



[SILENCE] [MUSIC] Hi, I'm Mike Wilbur. Welcome to Fire Engineering Training Minutes. Today, we're going to show you a tactic that you've probably never even seen before. We're going to take this very expensive c-grade 95 foot mid-mounted tower. And we're gonna use it as an offensive weapon at Arello's stores. A couple things have happened over time as it relates to store fires. One is, is that, store number three in a row will be on fire, the fire will have busted through the roof, and fire department XYZ shows up with their aerial device. They deploy it, they push the fire down through the roof of store number three and they proceed to push the fire throughout the whole row of stores and burn the whole row of stores down. It's not much of a, it's not much a stretch, you can look in any of the fire magazines, Fire Engineering, you can look on the websites. And see pictures of this kind of tactical debacle happening all the time. We have a better way we thing. If you recall from your firefighter training early on, you were probably taught about ventilation in general. And particular a tactic that we call a trench cut. For myself personally in my career, I've been involved in about 20 trench cuts. Unfortunately, only two of them actually worked. In most cases, the fire would get a headway, by the time we got enough resources and equipment and people on the roof. And started to commence with the work and got the trench actually pulled, the fire would be three stores past where we were trying to make this defensive hold and it ended up, again, burning most of the stores down. So, I think we found a better way here. We can use this aerial scope, we can use it as an offensive weapon. As you can see we have the nozzle position here so that we can drive the water deep into the [INAUDIBLE] and basically what we are trying to instruct you to do here is that we're going to take this, this nozzle, this water and we're actually going to cut an inverted trench. We could do it much faster, we can do it much more efficiently, and we can do if much safer than having people on the roof. This is short-handed firefighting as its best right here folks. And so what we're gonna do is, we're gonna supply this with water and we're gonna drive the stream in, and we're gonna basically make a fire break. And then we can actually take the stream and we'll be able to push the fire back on itself. And rather than burning a whole row of stores down, we'll be able to take a fire in say store number 3, we'll skip a couple of stores. We'll set this up as you see it set up here now, and we'll start office, offensive. a attack on this fire. One of the things that are key to this, is the fact that you need to have a set of stacked tips rather than a combination, or a bog type nozzle. This action, this tactic requires that we have the full region penetration of the stream.=. And quite frankly as it relates to tower ladder operations or aerial tower operations, it really requires a set of stacked tips for safety sake. Because, you see, if you don't have a set of stacked tips like this and you're not getting the reach and penetration of this stream. Firefighters in the bucket may actually wander into the collapse zone of the building based on the fact that we're not getting that region penetration of the stream, and we're trying to get way too close. But this a tried and true proven tactic not widely known unfortunately. We're trying to get. The word out about this. But this is a good way to really fulfill part of our mission which is to save not only lives, but also to save properties. It's easy to do. It requires a little in the way of manpower a pumper with this with the driver feeding this apparatus with a couple of firefighters, and we can do a tremendous job as far as saving the property here and saving the rest of the stores in this particular row. For Fire Engineering Training MInutes, this is Mike Wilber, and we'll see you next time.

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