Fireside Reading

By John M. Malecky

Emergency Rescue Shoring Techniques
By John P. O’Connell

Available from:
FIRE ENGINEERING’s Books, Videos, DVD’s.

Item Number: 0-912212-59-4

Price: $69.00 + shipping

This book is soft cover measuring 7 inches by 10 inches, and has 512 pages. The author is the lead collapse instructor for the FDNY, a New York State certified instructor, adjunct instructor for the New York State Academy of Science, and a certified instructor for the FDNY Division of Training. He has been with the FDNY since 1979 and with Rescue 3 since 1987. He is an editorial advisory board member and contributing editor for Fire Engineering Magazine, an FDIC advisory board member, and has been involved with FEMA urban search and rescue since its inception. He is also a lead instructor for the USAR system. He is the president of Collapse Rescue Systems, Inc.

This book is a thorough text on the subject of shoring. Its seven chapters contain detailed, easy-to-read information.

Topics covered include:

  1. Introduction to Emergency Shoring Techniques. This chapter defines emergency rescue shoring, explains “concentrated” versus “distributed” with respect to loads on remaining building supports after collapses, the shoring system, startup considerations, and additional information with shoring size-up. Types of lumber, storage of it, and use of existing lumber along with common sizes use, nails, nail patterns and wedges complete the section.
  2. The Use and Training of Rescue Personnel in Shoring Operations. This section details four- and six-member shoring teams. Each system has and officer, measuring, shoring, layout, cutting, and tool and equipment firefighters which are divided into two squads. It also features recommended training covering 11 areas totaling 140 hours.
  3. Setting Up Shoring Operations. This section covers three classes of shores, nails, cutting table, marking lumber for cuts, multiple cuts in one pass, wedges, prefabricated headers and posts, diagonal braces and raker shore angles, and calculated load weights.
  4. Interior Rescue Shoring Procedures. This chapter covers size-up and eight types of shores.
  5. Exterior Rescue Shoring Procedures. After discussing size-up, this section covers load transfer, raker shores, bad angle cut, splicing rakers, raker bracing systems, and the flying shore.
  6. Shoring and Cribbing of Sloped Surfaces. This topic covers the sloped-floor shore, split-sole, sloped-floor shore, sloped-floor shore, cross bracing and angles, and box cribbing.
  7. Tools and Equipment Utilized in Rescue Shoring. Covers hand tools of many types, and tool assignments.
  8. Tools to Order for a Shoring Operation. This lists various hand tools, electrical tools and an inventory for an initial shoring tool box. The book has a glossary and an index.

The book’s illustrations work well to impart knowledge to the reader while illustrating what is being explained.

John M. Malecky is a 32-year veteran of the Bayonne (NJ) Fire Department and a battalion chief (retired) with Battalion 2. He joined the department in 1970 and was named a lieutenant in 1987, a captain in 1994, and a battalion chief in 2000. He is author of Apparatus Deliveries in Fire Engineering.

Fireside Reading


By John M. Malecky

By Leigh T. Hollins

Price: $129.95 + S & H

Video/Approximately 40 minutes
Available from Fire Engineering Books & Videos
Phone: 1-800-752-9764, Fax: 1-918-831-9555
Order No. 0-912212-98-5

Leigh Hollins has taught school bus extrication since 1994, and this professionally done presentation is proof of his expertise. Actual footage of school bus extrication operations are intermingled with figures and statistics on such accidents, the different types of school buses responders may encounter and their characteristics and construction, the extrication problems responders face at such incidents, and strategy and tactics for rescue and extrication.

It is interesting to note that school buses are used in a variety of ways, especially older buses when they are no longer used by schools to transport schoolchildren. My department in Bayonne, New Jersey, originally planned on using an old bus converted by our shops for our first haz-mat truck. Unfortunately, the project encountered some problems that proved to be cost-prohibitive, and the idea was scrapped.

This video is excellent for training purposes. No matter how many auto and truck extrications you may have responded to, school buses are a different “ball game” and require specialized training. This video is vital for your fire department training center resource library.

John M. Malecky is a 31-year veteran of the Bayonne (NJ) Fire Department and battalion chief with Battalion 2. He joined the department in 1970 and was named a lieutenant in 1987, a captain in 1994, and a battalion chief in 2000. He is author of the Apparatus Deliveries feature in Fire Engineering.