Engine Company, Structural Firefighting

A Guide to Selecting the Attack Line

Issue 10 and Volume 171.

BY BRYAN DOWNIE Every fire gives clues about which line and tactics you should deploy. It is up to you to recognize these clues, which you can read from the type of construction, how the fire is advancing, smoke conditions, and the occupancy. The selection of the appropriate attack line is crucial to gaining rapid control of a fire; yet, too often, the first-arriving crews pull an undersized attack line, usually the 1¾-inch preconnect, regardless of how large or advanced the fire. This article focuses on the initial actions of the first-arriving engine company; they are the most crucial actions and set the tone for later-arriving companies and greatly affect the success of the fire department’s operations. Discussed here are incidents at which the fire is readily apparent and immediately accessible because the majority of our fires, especially those involving residences, fit that scenario: We arrive, the flames are visible,…

Subscribe to unlock this content

Subscribe Now