Firefighting

Getting the First Hoseline in Operation

Issue 110 and Volume 162.

BY DANIEL P. SHERIDAN You can’t overstate the importance of getting the first hoseline in operation at a fire. The first hoseline has two functions: to protect egress routes (it is placed between the fire and the normal means of egress) and to extinguish the fire. By default, the second function is usually a result of the first. There are rare exceptions where the first line will not extinguish the fire, which I will get into later. If we are talking about a response of four firefighters, which may be the norm in many departments in the United States, saving life should only be put ahead of stretching a hoseline in situations where the unit could not do both. For example, you don’t need the whole company to put up a portable ladder for someone showing at a window. Usually, you can detail one firefighter to do a task while…

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