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Just saying...

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  • Just saying...

    All too often today the only fire experience the new breed of experts have...


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    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

  • #2
    OMG! You better clean that up! Think of the children!
    Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

    Everyone goes home. Safety begins with you.

    Comment


    • #3
      I get where you're coming from. I'm probably in the minority here but I don't think lifting the restrictions is necessarily a good idea. Real life fire conditions are dangerous and somewhat unpredictable. Especially to the inexperienced. As mentioned in the other similar thread, the instructors are often among the inexperienced. Who gets to be the "instructor"? The guy with the "certs"? The biggest type-A personality? The loudmouth? I've seen too many videos of training gone wrong to think it should be done with realistic contents. How many mistakes were not recorded? How many had the recording destroyed to protect the not so innocent?

      There are likely very few departments out there that will honestly look in the mirror and say "we are not prepared to do this". The problem is that the ones most prepared to do it are the least likely to really need it. And vice-versa. This is why, IMO, training has to be looked at as an on-going and never-ending process. It's not something you do to get a "cert". (I really hate that term.) Some of the training just has to be "on the job". Do the police or military train by shooting live ammo at each other? Risk vs reward applies to training as much as it does to fireground ops.

      I've seen and read about too many drills where no safety line was in place. Or it was there but not charged. Never mind a second line for additional safety. Or a line that is not sufficient for fire suppression. Tangent time: How many times do we have to see a "charged" 1 3/4 line prior to opening nozzle that hangs somewhat limply over a guys arm? This is NOT a line that is ready to extinguish structural fire. I'm not talking about training burns either.

      OK back on topic. How man times do we see a lack of laddering for secondary egress? Or a lack of a suitable RIT team? Or inadequate communications? No real IC or qualified safety officer? Guys going in without PPE or SCBA? Guys going in fully upright? (That one appears to be epidemic.)

      Use the training burns to teach line advance (single-most important firefighting tactic), search techniques, SCBA usage, ladder placement, ventilation, etc. The actual interior fire suppression can wait for actual fires to happen. The experienced will have to teach the inexperienced at that time.

      Look at the thread on transitional attack and flow path. There was a grand total of five participants. Three weeks passed without a comment. There are just too many who don't understand modern fire behavior or don't care about modern fire behavior. I don't know which. There are just too many who will hurt themselves or others if given a chance to light up buildings with realistic contents and then train on it.

      Comment


      • #4
        Can I agree with both of you? My issue is that we have a tough time preparing new firefighters for the actual environment they'll be exposed to. We can use hay and pallets effectively for the newest recruits, showing basic fire behavior, operating in smoke conditions (albeit, lighter, slower moving smoke), and basic hose and nozzle technique. But, I do not think we can teach fire attack with hay and pallets, the conditions are limited in heat, smoke and way to quick to extinguish.

        If we all were much busier as with some metro FD's this wouldn't be as concerning as we can use OJT, marrying up a recruit with a seasoned company. But here in small town US, some of these guys are the first in crew just weeks out of their classes, with other lesser seasoned personnel, if any to oversee them.

        I'd like to see 1403 allow for more realistic conditions with very tight requirements for instructors, and a true safety plan to ensure that exposing personnel to these conditions is done correctly. Doing live burns is a tough thing for small FD's so often personnel only get one crack at each function (attack, search, vent, b/u, RIT). Its all too realistic that some firefighters can pass FF 1&2 and never be on the nozzle in live fire, as they may only have a single burn day, and if they're not on the butt, they're SOL...

        Of course the more restrictive it is to conduct the training, the less likely it will be done, so what's the answer?

        Comment


        • #5
          My points was simple really:

          1) Pallets and hay training fires constitute the majority of fire fighting experience/training in many places. Some places it isn't even that real with the use of gas fed structure fire props.

          2) Instructors that fit the above are passing on how to fight pallets and hay fires and not exposing their trainees to how to handle real world fires with real world tactics.

          3) I have no solutions to either of those issues because we certainly don't want a return to the war years of the 1970's, and standards do not allow real world fuels to be burned in training. BUT...the truth is instructors can teach tactics for the real world even in pallets and hay fires. All it takes is understanding the real world and appropriate tactics.
          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


          • #6
            Originally posted by captnjak View Post
            I get where you're coming from. I'm probably in the minority here but I don't think lifting the restrictions is necessarily a good idea. Real life fire conditions are dangerous and somewhat unpredictable. Especially to the inexperienced. As mentioned in the other similar thread, the instructors are often among the inexperienced. Who gets to be the "instructor"? The guy with the "certs"? The biggest type-A personality? The loudmouth? I've seen too many videos of training gone wrong to think it should be done with realistic contents. How many mistakes were not recorded? How many had the recording destroyed to protect the not so innocent?

            The tech college I teach for has a cadre of senior instructors that do the majority of live fire training. We will bring newer instructors in and they are mentored to become part of the team. We have a burn tower that we burn hay and pallets in, and we do acquired structure burns. We follow NFPA 1403 to the letter. For acquired structures ICS is established, back up lines are staffed, RIT is staffed, 2 water supplies are secured and absolutely NO ONE enters the structure unless ICS is notified. For the tower back up lines are in place and most of the same procedures are followed as with an acquired structure.

            We had an incident about 3 decades ago at an acquired structure burn where 2 firefighters got burned. One on the knees and another on the ears. The entire burn program was shut down for almost 2 years and a major overhaul was done to prevent a re-occurrence. More training was given to instructors and hard and firm policies were put in place. We have had no major incidents since that time. Instructors know that they are responsible for safety and if policies are violated they very well maybe be out of a job.


            There are likely very few departments out there that will honestly look in the mirror and say "we are not prepared to do this". The problem is that the ones most prepared to do it are the least likely to really need it. And vice-versa. This is why, IMO, training has to be looked at as an on-going and never-ending process. It's not something you do to get a "cert". (I really hate that term.) Some of the training just has to be "on the job". Do the police or military train by shooting live ammo at each other? Risk vs reward applies to training as much as it does to fireground ops.

            I agree with everything you have said. I tell people certs are a baseline and the only time you quit learning is when you either retire or die.

            I've seen and read about too many drills where no safety line was in place. Or it was there but not charged. Never mind a second line for additional safety. Or a line that is not sufficient for fire suppression. Tangent time: How many times do we have to see a "charged" 1 3/4 line prior to opening nozzle that hangs somewhat limply over a guys arm? This is NOT a line that is ready to extinguish structural fire. I'm not talking about training burns either.

            Complacency is a killer whether at real world incidents or training.

            OK back on topic. How man times do we see a lack of laddering for secondary egress? Or a lack of a suitable RIT team? Or inadequate communications? No real IC or qualified safety officer? Guys going in without PPE or SCBA? Guys going in fully upright? (That one appears to be epidemic.)

            Read the blogs...So many spend so much time talking about being macho and how this or that action makes you a pussy. Doing the job right, and doing it as safe as possible doesn't make you a pussy, it makes you a good firefighter or fire officer.

            Use the training burns to teach line advance (single-most important firefighting tactic), search techniques, SCBA usage, ladder placement, ventilation, etc. The actual interior fire suppression can wait for actual fires to happen. The experienced will have to teach the inexperienced at that time.

            True enough.

            Look at the thread on transitional attack and flow path. There was a grand total of five participants. Three weeks passed without a comment. There are just too many who don't understand modern fire behavior or don't care about modern fire behavior. I don't know which. There are just too many who will hurt themselves or others if given a chance to light up buildings with realistic contents and then train on it.

            See my comment above about the blogs. So many have directly attacked transitional attacks ad flow path control as the pussification of the fire service. The lack of understanding of modern fire behavior should scare the crap out of firefighters in the know.
            Considering our combative beginning we seem to agree far more than we disagree today.
            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 RFDACM02 View Post
              Can I agree with both of you? My issue is that we have a tough time preparing new firefighters for the actual environment they'll be exposed to. We can use hay and pallets effectively for the newest recruits, showing basic fire behavior, operating in smoke conditions (albeit, lighter, slower moving smoke), and basic hose and nozzle technique. But, I do not think we can teach fire attack with hay and pallets, the conditions are limited in heat, smoke and way to quick to extinguish.

              Of course I follow the standards for burns...But I can't help but wonder how dangerous it really is to put a single shingle on top of my Class A pallets and hay fire to develop some of the black smoke firefighters will experience going interior today.


              If we all were much busier as with some metro FD's this wouldn't be as concerning as we can use OJT, marrying up a recruit with a seasoned company. But here in small town US, some of these guys are the first in crew just weeks out of their classes, with other lesser seasoned personnel, if any to oversee them.

              BINGO!! That is small town USA today and it doesn't matter whether it is career, combo, or volly. The calls simply are not there anymore.


              I'd like to see 1403 allow for more realistic conditions with very tight requirements for instructors, and a true safety plan to ensure that exposing personnel to these conditions is done correctly. Doing live burns is a tough thing for small FD's so often personnel only get one crack at each function (attack, search, vent, b/u, RIT). Its all too realistic that some firefighters can pass FF 1&2 and never be on the nozzle in live fire, as they may only have a single burn day, and if they're not on the butt, they're SOL...

              I can't disagree with any of this.


              Of course the more restrictive it is to conduct the training, the less likely it will be done, so what's the answer?

              True enough.
              No simple solutions it seems.
              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


              • #8
                Originally posted by FyredUp View Post
                No simple solutions it seems.
                I think you make a good point about the shingle. Is there no decent compromise? Something beyond hay and pallets but also short of full out conflagration?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by FyredUp View Post
                  Considering our combative beginning we seem to agree far more than we disagree today.
                  Give it time!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Old couches, mattresses, chairs, and carpet aren't that hard to come by. What would be the real problem, 1403 aside, with adding one or two of those to the pile? Would that not be a little more realistic look at what one would be expected to put out in a structure?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by captnjak View Post
                      I think you make a good point about the shingle. Is there no decent compromise? Something beyond hay and pallets but also short of full out conflagration?
                      We do use a smudge pot with wet hay for making "hot" smoke. Again realizing that essentially all we get is the loss of visibility, not the behavior of smoke from modern furnishings. The new towers both have cold smoke machines, again for loss of visibility.

                      Again, I follow the rules, but I can't comprehend how using a single shingle for more realistic smoke behavior is a life safety hazard.
                      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


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by WVFD705 View Post
                        Old couches, mattresses, chairs, and carpet aren't that hard to come by. What would be the real problem, 1403 aside, with adding one or two of those to the pile? Would that not be a little more realistic look at what one would be expected to put out in a structure?
                        There is no 1403 aside if your state has adopted 1403 and the agency you work for has made violating it a fireable offense.
                        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


                        • #13
                          Maybe the current system is okay, just not implemented properly. And of course old habits are hard to break.

                          Instructors sometimes get tired of me because when I take a crew into a training burn we put water on the damn thing.
                          The fire service is about service to our fellow man.
                          There is a trust that must not be broken and we are the keepers of that trust.
                          Captain Dave LeBlanc

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by conrad427 View Post
                            Instructors sometimes get tired of me because when I take a crew into a training burn we put water on the damn thing.
                            "DON'T PUT IT OUT! DON'T PUT IT OUT! LEAVE IT FOR THE NEXT CREW!"

                            Yes, I have heard that...
                            Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

                            Everyone goes home. Safety begins with you.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by tree68 View Post
                              "DON'T PUT IT OUT! DON'T PUT IT OUT! LEAVE IT FOR THE NEXT CREW!"

                              Yes, I have heard that...
                              I call that muscle memory conditioning...burn room firefighter. I have seen it where in an acquired structure training burn those burn room firefighters gave the fire a little shot and then shut the nozzle off. Meanwhile the fire blows over and through them. Without an alert back up line officer they would have gotten roasted.
                              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

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