articles copy

Firefighter Proving Grounds

"Firefighter Proving Grounds is a community dedicated to the advancement of strategy and tactics in firefighting and technical rescue."
Top Floor Tactics

“You got the irons tonight kid”

“You got the irons tonight kid”

So, you have a few fires under your belt, and are feeling confident, when the boss finally says, “You got the irons tonight kid.” You think that tonight is the night to prove yourself. This is the moment you've been waiting for since the day you walked into this place. After a busy start to the tour, and a few forcible entry tips from the senior man, you feel like no door in the city could hold you back. For the first time in your career, you truly feel ready to go into battle.

IMG 1804It's 2:00 AM, and you receive a second due phone alarm for a fire on the fifth floor of a six-story, non-fireproof, occupied multiple dwelling. Falling back to your training, you've been sizing up this fire from the moment you received the alarm. What time is it? Is it still snowing out? It was windy as hell before; all the cards begin to fall. Your company turns the corner as the first due engine transmits the working fire signal. It's go time! You hustle to the lobby as the line is being stretched, only to be met with hysterical occupants fleeing the building. You navigate your way through the chaos, pass the fire floor, and remind the first due officer that you're going above. You arrive at the floor above, conditions are far from ideal and yet, still discerning the task ahead, you ask yourself, "now what?" 

IMG 0485Sizing up the door

Door size-up, when gaining entry to the fire apartment or the floor above, goes far beyond the gap, set, force mentality. We were taught in the early stages of our careers to always “try before you pry.” This is done to ensure that the door is indeed locked before taking on the sometimes tedious task of forcing it. We do not often speak about the size up of the door and whether or not the door is locked. Most firefighters would assume an unlocked door is a good thing, because quick access to locating the seat of the fire with zero delays in searching for victims makes sense. However, understand it can be more challenging than you may think. Although advantageous at times, an unlocked door can be a red flag to an apartment that is outfitted or modified with illegal single room occupancy or “SRO.”

 

IMG 1798The term “SRO” originated in New York City in the 1930s and refers to tenants renting a single room, as opposed to a full flat (apartment). While roommates informally sharing an apartment may also have a bedroom and share a bathroom and kitchen, an SRO tenant leases the SRO unit individually. This leads to individual rooms being padlocked and illegally partitioned walls being put in place, possibly blocking the second means of egress. The danger that lies within the parameters of fighting fires in apartments outfitted with illegal SRO's is among one of the most threatening we can ever encounter. 

Be cognizant of the fire location, as well as confirming access to and discering the location of fire escapes. In addition, pay close attention to the status of the hose line and the progress of water on the fire. It is imperative to have a grasp on these are key components before committing yourself, and your crew, further into the apartment. Once you have ensured you have a second means of egress, this area becomes your threshold. This threshold will be your point of return when conditions rapidly begin to deteriorate.

Resize the building up from this point and orient yourself from the inside out

Resizing, simply put, is sticking your head out the window and observing how far you have traveled, fire location, and the progression of the line, all the while keeping in mind the isolation of the room. Also, window integrity becomes crucial while operating without a charged hose line. Do not disrupt the flow path in this situation. 

IMG 1800Swimming in the ocean can be used as a simple analogy here to emphasize the importance of resizing the fire building from the inside out: you're swimming in the ocean, all the while thinking you are in fact swimming in the exact spot where you entered the water, only to resurface and realize you have drifted two hotels away. Translate that to the fire floor where we almost always think we've traveled farther than we really have. Knowing the actual distance we've traveled allows us to make more accurate decisions. Discipline yourself to dial it back at fires such as these until you can confirm your second means of egress, or ensure a charged hose line is advancing. Once you've discovered that you are dealing with an SRO, be sure to give that report over the radio. 

 

Hell, make it URGENT! Your life, as well as mine, depend on it!

Continue reading
  1829 Hits
  0 Comments
Firefighter Proving Grounds

FFPG is a Proud Supporter of HEAT STRAPS LLC

Untitled-design-5

Continue reading
  1015 Hits
  0 Comments
Firefighter Proving Grounds

"Multiple Family" Private Dwelling

Copy-of-Size-Up-Series-4_9_19-private-dwellin_20190409-215801_1

Building Information:

 3 Story Peaked Roof Multiple Family Private Dwelling

***There are two entrances with different addresses***

Note: For this drill you are responding to a report of a fire in a private dwelling with people trapped.

 


This drill is part of the Firefighter Proving Grounds "Size-Up Series". This series is designed for firefighters to drill and train with their departments using their SOP's

 

Continue reading
  901 Hits
  0 Comments
Firefighter Proving Grounds

Mixed Occupancy #3

Copy-of-Size-Up-Serie_20190227-163825_1

Building Information:

4 Story non-fireproof mixed occupancy

No sprinkler System


Note: For this drill the first due engine is connected to a positive water source and is 50 feet from the main entrance

This drill is part of the Firefighter Proving Grounds "Size-Up Series". This series is designed for firefighters to drill and train with their departments using their SOP's

 

Continue reading
  873 Hits
  0 Comments
Firefighter Proving Grounds

Non-Fireproof Multiple Dwelling #1

9storynon

Building Information:

9 story Non-fireproof occupied multiple dwelling

1 interior stair and elevator

Fire escapes on exposure 1 & 3 (A & C) side

No standpipe


Note: For this drill the first due engine is connected to a positive water source and is 50 feet from the main entrance

This drill is part of the Firefighter Proving Grounds "Size-Up Series". This series is designed for firefighters to drill and train with their departments using their SOP's

hZLU_CXhGLY

Continue reading
  2171 Hits
  0 Comments
Firefighter Proving Grounds

Private Dwelling: "Queen Anne"

queenanne600x300

Building Information:

"Queen Anne"


Note: For this drill the first due engine is connected to a positive water source and is 50 feet from the main entrance

This drill is part of the Firefighter Proving Grounds "Size-Up Series". This series is designed for firefighters to drill and train with their departments using their SOP's

Continue reading
  1891 Hits
  0 Comments
Firefighter Proving Grounds

Mixed Occupancy #1

IMG_0817

Building Information:

3 Story non-fireproof mixed occupancy

Doctors Office 1st Floor

Apartments on 2nd and 3rd Floors

No sprinkler System


Note: For this drill the first due engine is connected to a positive water source and is 50 feet from the main entrance

This drill is part of the Firefighter Proving Grounds "Size-Up Series". This series is designed for firefighters to drill and train with their departments using their SOP's

 

Continue reading
  1244 Hits
  0 Comments

Topscore.png

Firefighter(1).png