“Average Joe” Firefighting Operations

Issue 5 and Volume 163.

By BARRY S. DASKAL Albert Einstein once said, “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.” This article is a hybrid of information from various comprehensive sources on structural firefighting operations that the “Average Joe” firefighter can find useful.   SIZE-UP   Your first concern always starts with size-up. The classic 13-point size-up method is to use the acronym COAL WAS WEALTH. Construction. How and with what material is the building built? There is a difference in fighting a fire in a wood-frame private dwelling vs. a building of ordinary construction. Is the building of truss construction, or is it a commercial building, where you might anticipate open void spaces? Fire travels differently, and our tactics must be different. Occupancy. Is this a place of public assembly such as a shopping mall or a health care facility? What about a paint store or a pool store? Does…

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