If you remember a post back in December when I talked about getting dispatched to unknown problems then you already understand where this is going, if not here it is http://averagejakeff.wordpress.com/2010/12/30/humbled-and-so-much-to-talk-about/ Flash forward (or backwards since it was yesterday) and yesterday we get dispatched for the unknown problem. Like I said in the post about it we made sure this time we did some good “size up” via the CAD screen and the dispatch information. It sounded like the standard person down in the house can not get to the door call. Typically on these calls we “find a way in” assess the patient and determine if transport is needed. As we were making the block the ALS chase car medic from the Volly Squad was waving at us from the front yard, when we pulled up she said “I think I smell smoke”. So acting accordingly we geared up, packed up and added an extra engine and truck to the response. The boss (lieutenant) mad a lad and when he did he found that the storm door on the front was locked preventing us from rapidly getting to the actual door to the occupancy, he called us to the rear were an easier door presented itself. Sure enough you could smell smoke, see a moderate smoke condition in the occupancy, and see a victim/patient in the living room. We forced entry with the irons, but the drawers near the door were open blocking the door from opening, Thankfully the door had windows so we broke a window and I reached in with a tool and closed them. Once in we yanked the victim/patient out of there turned them over to EMS and did a primary search. The search turned up negative for victims and fire. The house had colliers mansion conditions and the end result ended up being a burner left on the stove with paper piled up on it burning. We were probably about 10 minutes from a major fire. The moral of the story is expect the unexpected no matter where you work, no matter how busy, or slow your company is.
I know if you read the blog you remember the post from the other day here: http://averagejakeff.wordpress.com/2011/03/05/what-would-you-do-2/
In short its a video with a lot of debate on hoseline discipline and what you should do if faced with similar situations. I also offered my opinion on what I would do and why. Well this morning after the tour was over my brother from my old company “El Guapo” called to tell me about the second of 2 fires they had yesterday (and people wonder why I miss that place). The second fire he told me was just like the scenario in the above post. He was bossing the rig and saw the fire venting out of the window threatening the exterior soffit. He directed the nozzleman to hit it from the exterior (with a straight stream) then enter once the door was open. He said it worked like a charm, did not push the fire, got a good knock on it, kept the fire from growing, and kept the fire from extending to other rooms and the attic. This may not be the key to every fire but this technique when done right can work for you, especially if there is a delay in forcing the entry door.
Also just a reminder FDIC is right around the corner, and I will be making the trek out there and teaching my class “Long Stretch Solutions” on Wednesday 3:30-5:15 room 134-135. I will be there all week and attending several of the special events and other classes. So if you’re coming out to Indy come see my class, and if you see me out and about come over and say hey.
As usual thanks for reading, spread the word, and STAY SAFE!