Engine Company, Firefighting

Entering Windows

Issue 12 and Volume 166.

BY SAMUEL HITTLE THERE ARE A VARIETY OF reasons a firefighter may need to enter a structure through a window. Most of these reasons require doing so in a timely manner under adverse conditions. When performing vent-enter-search (VES), it is imperative to get in quickly so you can promptly isolate the room to prevent drawing fire to your location. Other times, although not ideal, you may have to stretch through a window. This, too, requires a fast ingress. In these and other scenarios, your ability to make entry on varying windowsill heights and floor levels in a judicious time frame is essential. First, let’s review some basics. Before entering through a window, observe ventilation conditions while clearing the window components. Once you determine circumstances are favorable, notify command of the following: who you are, tactical objective, level, and building side (i.e., “Truck 1 is VESing second floor, Bravo side”). This…

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