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  • Use of UAC during training

    I have a hard time believing this topic has not been debated ad nauseaum but searching for it gives me 0 results, so here goes...

    I was trained some years ago that filling cylinders with the UAC is hazardous and should only be done in emergencies. Every manual says this, but it says the same about EBSS while saying you must be trained thoroughly to use it. Manuals also say you’re going to die of heat exhaustion if you wear a turnout coat...

    is transfilling a cylinder during training too risky? Does it put undue stress on the cylinder?

  • #2
    As with any training we do, there is risk.

    When I took RIT class we each had to transfill with the UAC in the classroom. Then had to do it in real-time as part of our final evaluation, filling the manikin's airpack blacked out, and dragging him back through the obstacle course.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by nt8d09 View Post
      As with any training we do, there is risk. .
      This is what I’m wondering about. Did you have any knowledge about the risks associated with this? Or did you assume it was cool because you took a class where some instructors didn't think it was a big deal? Im not picking on you I’m just trying to point out that we do what we are shown is ok, and i’m wondering if anyone knows whether or not this is really ok? When i worked at a small department we filled our own cylinders in a big massive class 2 containment unit. The “cascade” system protected the cylinders from being filled too rapidly and the containment unit protected the operator from the frag in the event of a ruptured cylinder. Now I work at a big dept with a bunch of dudes whose knowledge of the refill process includes filling out a form then waiting for the delivery truck to show up. Naturally it does not raise their eyebrows to rapidly fill a cylinder with no protection but I had not thought about that until yesterday. My LT asked to see me do a quick school on the RIC bag, and my entire crew had no idea that there was any hazard associated with using the UAC. Im not getting on a soapbox because I have used it plenty of times in training even knowing how risky it might be, im just wondering if anyone knows anything to either confirm this or knows it to be safer than the scary user manual says

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      • #4
        Seems like the one to ask is the manufacture.

        What should be the fill rate or other restrictions they have on filling.

        they will be the ones to get sued, so they should know the answer.
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZdEH...e_gdata_player

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        • #5
          Originally posted by frostymug1001 View Post

          is transfilling a cylinder during training too risky? Does it put undue stress on the cylinder?
          I look at it like this: The manufacturer is the one who I listen too about their product. I believe all of them ( as well as NFPA, OSHA, & NIOSH) advise use only for emergencies. I am not an engineer nor a fiber/metals expert, so I can only guess to the effect on the cylinder, but I shouldn't have to, because the agencies listed prior have people that know and say they feel it's bad. Could they say this to cover their butt for a remote chance of injuring/killing someone? Sure, that's probable, but do you and your department want to assume that liability?

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          • #6
            It was one of our practicals for three separate classes in the NC FF I/II curriculum. I dont really see how it could be dangerous though. Ive done it a dozen or so times in the last 2 months.


            Breathing can be deadly. Should we all just stop?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by JSJJ388 View Post

              Breathing can be deadly. Should we all just stop?
              The originator of this topic also mentioned such a line, "you’re going to die of heat exhaustion if you wear a turnout coat..."
              Could we not also say that wearing SCBA on a dumpster or car fire is not needed? How about them telling us we can't stow gear in the cab of the truck, or better yet, next to your bunk?

              There is no doubt, we need to know how to use our equipment and there is no better way than hands-on. Trainers should be very capable of designing training to minimize (or eliminate if possible) risks taken.

              Safety issues should not be a "carte blanche" topic, especially when training is in a controlled environment.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Dude In The Car View Post

                The originator of this topic also mentioned such a line, "you’re going to die of heat exhaustion if you wear a turnout coat..."
                Could we not also say that wearing SCBA on a dumpster or car fire is not needed? How about them telling us we can't stow gear in the cab of the truck, or better yet, next to your bunk?

                There is no doubt, we need to know how to use our equipment and there is no better way than hands-on. Trainers should be very capable of designing training to minimize (or eliminate if possible) risks taken.

                Safety issues should not be a "carte blanche" topic, especially when training is in a controlled environment.


                Firefighting is dangerous. I dont see a need to take un needed risks, but we cant take the danger out of everything.

                I would be interested to know WHY using the UAC is dangerous. Is it simply because youre filling the bottle outside of a steel enclosure?

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