IT WAS AN IDEA born out of a desire to communicate. In 1983, the Ministry of the Solicitor General, Office of the Fire Marshal of Ontario, Canada wanted to gather a cadre of information on automobile extrication tactics from fire service members of both the United States and Canada. Understanding how difficult it would be to gather the instructional staff, they decided to offer an annual competition that would become a learning symposium. It has been a major success.

During the competition, new tools and techniques are introduced. An example of this was an excellent idea from the Seminole County (Florida) Fire Department. The department provided a relatively cost-free answer to two problems that have frustrated rescuers since the advent of hvdraulic ram bars: How do you use the 30-inch ram in a standard two-door vehicle? What is the alternative when the bottom of the “B” post is too weak to hold up under the stress of the ram?

The Seminole County Fire Department has devised a tool that just about eliminates these problems. It will assist everyone in the extrication service, especially those with limited budgets and where the ideal ram is out of service.

The device is a piece of four-inch channel rail bent at a 90-dcgree angle. Stop blocks are welded at regular intervals on the horizontal surface of the fitting. This device is “dropped” over the exposed rocker panel or bottom rail of the door frame of the vehicle. The shorter, vertical side is fitted up against the “B” post. This device not only gives various points to act as a base for the ram bar, but also spreads the force exerted on the critical “B~ post over more surface area.

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