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Lost firefighter drill

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  • Lost firefighter drill

    I am looking for a post that appeared here at firehouse.com a month or two back. I beleive it was an east coast dept. that conducted a drill where a firefighter was placed in a large room with 5 minutes of air and the mask blacked on the scba. The purpose was to test the firefighters reaction when the S*** the fan. I would like to find the drill or here more feed back on it.


  • #2
    Not the drill you are looking for, but sounds similiar. We use a simulation of a combination of hazards. We black out the mask and set our guys down on the hose of which they are to find a coupling and determine from the feel of it, state which way to the truck. After this, they follow it to the nozzle. The hose is snaked around and through a simulator (made of lumber)that represents scuttle holes, stairwells, rooflines and traversing across ceiling joists (attics) set at different OC measurements (either 16" or 24") and run different ways. At the end of the attic, they come down some stairs and go back under the stairwell where they are faced with a stud wall at 16" OC, of which they must pass through. On the other side of this wall are small chains and wires hanging down (about 10' total length) that will entangle you and you have to clear yourself of these entanglements before you can proceed. This simulates the hazards encountered with SCBAs, and teaches our guys to take off their SCBAs in the dark and keep orientated as to the whereabouts of their regulators and donning it back own. Each FF starts off with a full bottle and if they run out of air during the exercise, they are given another bottle to change in the dark. total length of the simulator is about 75' and is in two parts that are 6' wide and 4' tall so yo have two spaces to crawl (over and under). This is a great drill!! Contact me if interested and I will get you the specs (maybe a video, too).


    • #3
      Damn! I'm finally a veteran again and not a jr.


      • #4
        They demoted you, too, to jr???


        damn them!


        • #5

          ok so apparently i'm now a veteran too.

          go figure. i'll eat that last statement.



          • #6
            fireman phil - I don't remember seeing a post here in the forums about anything like that but I do remember reading an article here on firehouse.com about something similar. I want to say it was an article about how a city, I think it was baltimore, used the drill as part of their testing for an officer position or something like that.


            • #7

              The department in question was Chesterfield Va (A 'burb of Richmond).

              The drill - was part of a promotional test for a Lt position.
              The entire article is still alive and well on the FH web site at the following link. http://www.firehouse.com/news/2000/9/28_lost.html

              A very sobering story when you really think about it.

              Take Care - Stay Safe


              • #8
                I took the drill from firehouse back to my own department, and it was very good.

                After getting permission from one of our warehouses we sent guys in one by one without any prior training about the scenario. The results ran the gambit from members wandering around looking for the exit to well a organized processes to get out. Most would have died. A real eye opener.

                Our department didn't have specific procedures on what to do if you get lost. Some firefighters just were not prepared for this type of scenario, but they are now.

                Good luck with your drill.


                • #9
                  Three members of my engine company and I just did a similar exercise during a state fire academy Firefighter Survival class. Part of the class (which included such "last resort only" techniques as head-first ladder exits and rope exits) included an SCBA maze in our burn building with crawl holes, entanglements, and other obstacles which required us to remove our packs (but not masks) in order to get through. All of this was done in absolute darkness.

                  I would highly recommend taking a class like this if you get the chance. It will do wonders for your confidence, and give you a chance to practice some skills that might save your life one day.

                  Stay safe!

                  J. Black

                  The opinions expressed are mine and mine alone and may not reflect those of any organization with which I am associated.


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