Firefighting

FIGHTING FIRES FROM THE UNBURNED SIDE

Issue 4 and Volume 159.

You arrive as the first officer on-scene and find heavy fire venting out the front living room window in a raised ranch private home. You survey the rear and find it perfect-no fencing, a raised deck for access, and an unlocked door. Great, you think, and you order the first line to the rear to attack the fire from the unburned side. Except, when you use this strategy, you have failed to protect the primary means of egress, and you are playing Russian roulette with people’s lives. Many articles on fireground operations sound great until they start to mention taking the hoseline directly to the unburned side of a home for a fire that doesn’t require alternate tactics for extinguishment. If you have been trained or are training firefighters to fight fires from the unburned side as a first-line fire attack strategy, your hoseline is in the wrong place. Simple…

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