Engine Company, Fire Prevention & Protection, Firefighting

Attacking from the Burned Side Can Save Lives

Issue 11 and Volume 164.

BY SEAN GRAY The urban fire problem of rear porches and asphalt exterior siding has moved to the suburbs in the forms of wood decks and vinyl siding. Many times, the strategies and tactics of these fires are discussed in the firehouse, and people tend to have a difference of opinion, especially when unburned vs. burned is discussed. Why don’t we attack the fire from the burned side? This tactic is controversial because it goes against the grain of conventional firefighting tactics, which call for the first hoseline to be advanced into the fire building to protect occupants and their means of escape. The following line-of-duty deaths (LODDs) and near-miss fires are examples of when a different approach may have saved lives or prevented injuries. LODDs On April 16, 2007, in the Prince William County (VA) Fire Department, Firefighter Kyle Wilson was killed while operating at a structure fire. On…

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