Firefighting

The Punch Technique

Issue 11 and Volume 161.

By MICHAEL N. CIAMPO Overhaul and checking for extension are discussed at great lengths in classrooms and presentations. However, they are probably the two tactics least likely performed during hands-on training. It isn’t difficult to create a prop that holds pieces of drywall on a wall or ceiling, allowing firefighters to practice overhaul techniques. Unfortunately, purchasing drywall sheets is very expensive and can quickly deplete any training budget. Some fire academies take students out to buildings slated for demolition and practice their overhauling and opening-up skills. This type of training is realistic, and students can quickly see and learn the tasks that lie ahead of them. Most firefighting hooks are designed with a sharp edge so they can pierce a wall or ceiling, creating a purchase point. The hook is turned so the tool’s head can grab onto the material. The firefighter then pulls the material down or outward. Firefighters…

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