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A Few "Why" Questions of the Fire Service

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  • A Few "Why" Questions of the Fire Service

    As everyone knows, some of the best intellectual conversation can be had around a firehouse kitchen table. So, here are a few questions I and the guys I work with have come up with. Hopefully different people from different parts of the country can shed some light and give another perspective. Not trying to get really deep into anything, just basic operations type stuff. Feel free to throw out and answer and some more questions!

    1. Why does anyone still order pike poles when roof hooks do everything a pike pole can do, but better?

    2. Why do many departments still use 100 PSI nozzles when the same flow (and sometimes more) can be had with the same type of nozzle with a lower nozzle pressure?
    Career Firefighter
    Volunteer Captain

    -Professional in Either Role-

    Originally posted by Rescue101
    I don't mind fire rolling over my head. I just don't like it rolling UNDER my a**.

  • #2
    1. Because we've always done it that way.
    2. See #1.
    Opinions expressed are mine alone, and do not necessarily reflect those of the Philadelphia Fire Department and/or IAFF Local 22.

    Comment


    • #3
      Well..........

      After a long and Thoughtful deliberation that took about 90 seconds, Here's my take (or leavings....):


      The Lowly Hook has become a very specialized Tool, and not just for Truckies..... My Grandfather's stylr Pike is still around, for several reasons, one of which is a (fairly) Sharp Point. This was important back when Stamped Tin Ceilings were in most Commercial Buildings, and Plaster on Wood Lath was common as well....... Today's reliance on Drywall or Sheetrock, or Plasterboard, or Wallboard, (depending on what part of the Country you live in) created a different problem for us in that the Thin profile of the Pike Pole would penetrate the Sheetrock OK, but it had no resistance to tearing thru and failing on the Pullback. Enter my Friend Capt. Ritchie Clemens PGFD (ret) and the Clemens Hook. The Clemens hook proved to work very well on Sheetrock, wet or dry, but it had it's limits as well, with so-so penetration on Hard surfaced products like Paneling, Greenboard, etc. The NY Roof Hook seems to be able to get a better grip Sheetrock than the Pike Pole, and Penetrate other Materials better than the Clemens Hook......... That's my view from here........

      Nozzles???....... Too Technical. We use a 1.125 Smoothbore.......... We have no interest in anything that requires computing a flow, etc. Open the throttle slowly while watching the Nozzleman. When his feet leave the ground, turn the throttle back one turn.............
      Never use Force! Get a Bigger Hammer.
      In memory of
      Chief Earle W. Woods, 1912 - 1997
      Asst. Chief John R. Woods Sr. 1937 - 2006

      IACOJ Budget Analyst

      I Refuse to be a Spectator. If I come to the Game, I'm Playing.

      www.gdvfd18.com

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by mrpita View Post
        1. Because we've always done it that way.
        2. See #1.
        If it werent so true, it would be funny.

        Originally posted by hwoods View Post
        After a long and Thoughtful deliberation that took about 90 seconds, Here's my take (or leavings....):


        The Lowly Hook has become a very specialized Tool, and not just for Truckies..... My Grandfather's stylr Pike is still around, for several reasons, one of which is a (fairly) Sharp Point. This was important back when Stamped Tin Ceilings were in most Commercial Buildings, and Plaster on Wood Lath was common as well....... Today's reliance on Drywall or Sheetrock, or Plasterboard, or Wallboard, (depending on what part of the Country you live in) created a different problem for us in that the Thin profile of the Pike Pole would penetrate the Sheetrock OK, but it had no resistance to tearing thru and failing on the Pullback. Enter my Friend Capt. Ritchie Clemens PGFD (ret) and the Clemens Hook. The Clemens hook proved to work very well on Sheetrock, wet or dry, but it had it's limits as well, with so-so penetration on Hard surfaced products like Paneling, Greenboard, etc. The NY Roof Hook seems to be able to get a better grip Sheetrock than the Pike Pole, and Penetrate other Materials better than the Clemens Hook......... That's my view from here........

        Nozzles???....... Too Technical. We use a 1.125 Smoothbore.......... We have no interest in anything that requires computing a flow, etc. Open the throttle slowly while watching the Nozzleman. When his feet leave the ground, turn the throttle back one turn.............
        Harve, great post. I actually had someone tell me that they liked fiberglass handled pike poles because you could pull live power lines with them
        Career Firefighter
        Volunteer Captain

        -Professional in Either Role-

        Originally posted by Rescue101
        I don't mind fire rolling over my head. I just don't like it rolling UNDER my a**.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by GTRider245
          I actually had someone tell me that they liked fiberglass handled pike poles because you could pull live power lines with them
          Well you can...


          for about half a blink of an eye...
          HAVE PLAN.............WILL TRAVEL

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by GTRider245 View Post

            1. Why does anyone still order pike poles when roof hooks do everything a pike pole can do, but better?

            It still has uses and frankly, as good as the roof hook is it is not the answer to every situation. On my volly FD we carry pike poles of various lengths, roof hooks in 6, 8 and 10 foot lengths, San Francisco Pike, Boston Rakes, and Rubbish hooks. Some guys like the "old" pike poles and grab them, others look at the potential task and pick the best tool. Having choices to me seems smarter than all your eggs in one basket.

            My career FD carries pike poles of various lengths, 6 foot roof hooks and 4 foot plaster hooks.


            2. Why do many departments still use 100 PSI nozzles when the same flow (and sometimes more) can be had with the same type of nozzle with a lower nozzle pressure?

            The smart ones don't. They have either gone back to smooth bores or low pressure combination nozzles. Same water, better more cohesive streams, less nozzle reaction.
            Unfortunately there are people in the fire service that learned one way when they entered the fire service and simply through ignorance, laziness, stubborness, or certainty that their way is the only way, refuse to open their minds to positive change. The other side of the spectrum is the people that flop in the breeze of change and jump on every bandwagon that comes along. Both are ludicrous and dangerous in their own special way. The truth is some of the traditional ways we have done things and some of the traditional tools we have used are every bit as valid and important today as ever. However, the truth also is some of the new procedures and tactics as well as new tools being used are as valid and better than some of the old ways. The mixture of the old and the new that works is the key to success.
            Last edited by FyredUp; 11-30-2010, 02:07 PM.
            Crazy, but that's how it goes
            Millions of people living as foes
            Maybe it's not too late
            To learn how to love, and forget how to hate

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by mrpita View Post
              1. Because we've always done it that way.
              2. See #1.
              Exactly. Even when it defies reason.
              RK
              cell #901-494-9437

              Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

              "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


              Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by PaladinKnight View Post
                Well you can...


                for about half a blink of an eye...
                I've pulled them a lot further than that.
                RK
                cell #901-494-9437

                Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

                "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


                Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by hwoods View Post
                  Open the throttle slowly while watching the Nozzleman. When his feet leave the ground, turn the throttle back one turn.............

                  Now that's dang funny.

                  Quote o' the week
                  My wise and profound comments and opinions are mine alone and are in no way associated with any other individual or group.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by hwoods View Post
                    Open the throttle slowly while watching the Nozzleman. When his feet leave the ground, turn the throttle back one turn.............
                    And that's why it is SO important to put fat people on the knob!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      As far as the hooks go we carry a mix of roof hooks, pike poles, boston rakes, dry wall hooks and LA trash hooks so you have the best tool for what you need. Each has there own advantages and disadvantages. Nozzles we still run 100 psi TFTs as we pump our 1 3/4 handlines at 195 so there really isn't a need to use a lower pressure nozzle.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by GTRider245 View Post
                        I actually had someone tell me that they liked fiberglass handled pike poles because you could pull live power lines with them
                        Darwin at work....
                        Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by happyvalleyff View Post
                          Nozzles we still run 100 psi TFTs as we pump our 1 3/4 handlines at 195 so there really isn't a need to use a lower pressure nozzle.
                          195?! What length preconnect and type of hose?
                          Career Fire Captain
                          Volunteer Chief Officer


                          Never taking for granted that I'm privileged enough to have the greatest job in the world!

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                          • #14
                            1 3/4 hose at 200 feet gives us about 200 gpm.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              That's an awful lot of water for an 1.75" automatic nozzle.
                              Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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