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  • packs on the roof

    a couple of the guys were debating about wearing your pack on the roof, I was just trying to get some info about if there was ever a documented LODD or serious injury from a guy falling through a roof and burning up, recieving injuries, etc. Reguardless of your opinion, i just need some facts. thanks guys.
    "The third reason we are fighting is because men like to fight. They always have and they always will. Some sophists and other crackpots deny that. They don't know what they're talking about. They are either goddamned fools or cowards, or both. Men like to fight, and if they don't they're not real men. "-Gen. George S. Patton

  • #2
    hey there, i went and got some clips for ya









    Fire Bad.
    I'm gonna call you "Monday"... and I hate Mondays.

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    • #3
      found one more..

      I'm gonna call you "Monday"... and I hate Mondays.

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      • #4
        Eventus stultorum magister.
        Logic and proportion have fallen sloppy dead.

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        • #5
          "Facts. We don't need no stinkin' facts."

          Seriously, this is Firehouse after all.
          Train to fight the fires you fight.

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          • #6
            My initial thoughts are, why wouldn't you wear packs on the roof? If you're going up there to vent, then you very well could get a face full of smoke and fire. If you're up there, there is a chance you could fall through and end up inside the house.

            I say pack up. Why risk it?
            TruckCommittee.com

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            • #7
              There is a growing school of thought that packs should be worn throughout overhaul due to the off-gassing of nasty stuff that continues to occur until the fire is completely out.

              Usually if you're on the roof, the fire is still actively burning.

              And a "what-if" - what if the roof gives way and you end up in the middle of a maelstrom below? Wouldn't it be nice to have at least a modicum of breathing protection?

              Wear 'em if you got 'em.
              Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

              Everyone goes home. Safety begins with you.

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              • #8
                You have got to be kidding me. This is up for debate? Even guys who don't wear packs on the roof have to admit that they should.

                Want a documented case? Read up on Sgt. Strawn Nutter of Truck 3, Louisville (KY) Fire. On August 3, 1994, he was assigned to vent the roof at a fire in a storage rental unit. In the course of doing this, he fell through the roof. Fellow firefighters began entering the individual storage units searching for Strawn, but found only smoke and no Strawn. The building had a maze-like layout and Strawn was in a corridor that no one could quickly access. By the time somebody figured it out and Strawn was rescued, he had suffered fatal damage to his lungs.

                And he WAS wearing his SCBA. He was out of air and the mask was apparently displaced during the fall. He lived long enough to reach the hospital, which in my view means he had a prayer at survival. How do you figure his odds would have been WITHOUT an SCBA?

                This one hit close to home for me because Strawn's widow is my second cousin. I think about him almost every time we have guys on the roof. Even though he didn't survive, his use of SCBA gave him the best shot he could have had.

                Tribute to Strawn
                “I am more than just a serious basketball fan. I am a life-long addict. I was addicted from birth, in fact, because I was born in Kentucky.”
                ― Hunter S. Thompson

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by ravage17 View Post
                  a couple of the guys were debating about wearing your pack on the roof, I was just trying to get some info about if there was ever a documented LODD or serious injury from a guy falling through a roof and burning up, recieving injuries, etc. Reguardless of your opinion, i just need some facts. thanks guys.


                  Why wouldn't a firefighter wear a pack on the roof? If you are on the fireground, which includes the roof, you should be in complete PPE!
                  Last edited by CaptOldTimer; 10-08-2010, 12:43 PM.
                  Stay Safe and Well Out There....

                  Always remembering 9-11-2001 and 343+ Brothers

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                  • #10
                    Gotta wear 'em...
                    HAVE PLAN.............WILL TRAVEL

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by EastKyFF View Post
                      You have got to be kidding me. This is up for debate? Even guys who don't wear packs on the roof have to admit that they should.
                      I'll second that. It's not even a topic worth serious discussion; wear the damn SCBA.
                      "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"
                      sigpic
                      The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by DeputyMarshal View Post
                        I'll second that. It's not even a topic worth serious discussion; wear the damn SCBA.
                        Exactly....

                        Nothing macho about not being able to do your job because smoke keeps choking you up.

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                        • #13
                          My very first fire many years ago this issue came up.

                          I was assigned to assist the vent team on the roof (basically I was the pack mule carrying all the gear). Just as the roof officer was getting ready to place the first cut, a partial collapse occurred about 6 feet from us, spewing a ton of smoke out at us. If we hadn't been packed up, I doubt we would have been able to make our way back to the ladder and extricate ourselves from the situation. It happened that fast.

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                          • #14
                            so to you guys that say we need to wear packs on the roof, are you wearing your mask, hood, firefighting gloves and the chin strap on your helmet? The difference between wearing your pack and not is the changing of the center of gravity on your body. Make your cut on the roof and get off and if you already have fire venting from the roof why even go up there then because you don't know how long that attic has been burning. For those that wear packs but no mask on the roof can you explain to me what your plan is if things go bad, like a collapse, and you need your mask.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by TRUCK61 View Post
                              so to you guys that say we need to wear packs on the roof, are you wearing your mask, hood, firefighting gloves and the chin strap on your helmet? The difference between wearing your pack and not is the changing of the center of gravity on your body.
                              My first years on the job, I would say that no one would wear their mask on a pitched roof. A flat roof, yes, but never on a pitched.
                              We wore the MSA Ultra-lite II, which was awkward and could be out breathed. Never mind that the corrugated breathing tube always seemed to get hung up on something. This was also a transitional period on the department, here. Prior to the early 1980’s, there were never enough masks for every riding position. Criticize it as much as you wish, but that did contribute to the mentalities that many of the old-timers had. The masks were prioritized for interior positions, not the roof.

                              Having said that, working on the peaked roofs that we have, the Ultra-lite II did throw your center of gravity off. It was a huge issue then. Those days are long gone now, thankfully. The masks we wear now are a god-send when compared to the previous models. They are light, comfortable and will never be out breathed.

                              In answer to your questions, my mask is on my back, tho I may or may not be on air, my helmet is on (without chinstrap) and my hood is around my neck.


                              Originally posted by TRUCK61 View Post
                              Make your cut on the roof and get off and if you already have fire venting from the roof why even go up there then because you don't know how long that attic has been burning.
                              I agree with your premise, but will disagree with the generalities of it. Many times in my career, due to rehabs, compartmentalization of attic spaces (which are living space), etc we often have to make a couple of holes in different spots on a roof, in order to facilitate the interior push.

                              It’s called knowing your construction and reading the building. I’ll treat working on a roof of a new construction type of structure differently than an older inner-city type of home, with true dimensional lumber and nails holding it together. Those can burn for a long, long time without the roof compromising.



                              Originally posted by TRUCK61 View Post
                              For those that wear packs but no mask on the roof can you explain to me what your plan is if things go bad, like a collapse, and you need your mask.
                              Well, I try to let the conditions dictate if I actually go on air. I don’t believe in wasting air at a fire. I know, I know; air is free so use it. That is true, but it takes time to go out and change a bottle. And, what happens if I am caught in a collapse and, am out of air because I was breathing bottled air in a clean environment? I am not saying or advocating not wearing your mask; it is on my back virtually every time I step off the rig (barring certain runs). What I will advocate is to conserve your air, because even though air is free, there is only so much on your back.

                              If conditions are snotty on a roof, I will be on air; if I can’t breathe, there is a good chance the saw can’t, either. If that means taking some smoke while getting to the roof, hey, it happens. I also stretch inside as far as I can take it, as well. When it gets bad, we mask up. I want to conserve that air for as long as possible. You never know when another 100psi would’ve been real nice to have.

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