Depends on how bad it is! By all rights we should always use them, but we don't, and our SOP's don't spell it out black and white as they probably should neither. As a captain if I see someone that absolutly should be wearing one I'll tel them to pack up. But alot of our brush fires are small and a pack isn't usually needed.
I have been a firefighter for 15 years now, and I have used a air pack 1 time at a brush fire, and it was for the color of smoke. The fire had burned into a barn and the smoke was changing to some unique colors, hense the air pack. Other than that one time, never had one on at a brush fire.
Leave them on the truck. All a air pack is going to do in a woods fire is slow you down if you need to outrun a fire and or get snagged on something when doing that. the less gear you wear the better. I believe forestry recommends the only gear you wear is a forestry shirt, or turn out goat, Jeans or forestry pants, and work boots. They even have special respirators for forestry fires. All of this equipment is light and allows you to run if you get caught in a situation.
We didn't do a whole lot of brush work, but in 20 years, I don't think I've ever seen an scba hauled into the woods. I did see a ladderman strap a big igloo water cooler full of ice water onto his back once and carry it into the woods. I wanted to kiss that guy!
if you go in teams i would say yes for every four firefighters you at lest one air pack its one your tools you never know whats going to happen on a large scale fire but i would say on a small brush or grass fire its not needed
We do alot of brush work in My area .. Ive personally never seen an SCBA used during a Brushfire Our SOP states that during Brushfire operations if you think you need a pack then grab it and go..
I have seen the special respirators used by the Forestry service but we dont have them its a good idea though considering it protective and light so ya can run if ya need to ..
You dont need them. I am part of a volunteer department in North East Texas where it is always dry and we have woods anywhere u turn. We have gone to plenty that the smoke was think enough that we could have used on, but you also have to think, most of the fire is going to be where you can not get to it in a truck, espically if you roll an engine, we have a '91 F-350 with 250 gallons and a '89 doge 3/4 ton with 250 gallons, we never roll an engine first out to a brush fire first out. Our normal response is Brush-61 our F-350, then if we need it we roll Brush-63, then we roll one of our two 2000 gallon tankers if we we need the water. The only time we ever roll an engine if if we need CAFS foam off of Engine-64 our '01 F-750 engine. These trucks are from one of our three stations, that most of our guys respond out of, we also have Brush-62 that also has CAFS foam with a 750 gallon tank, if we have that truck coming we sont even think about callin E-64. If you have a fire that big your best bet in my eyes would be to save surronding structures, get ahead of it and cut a braek, and call the forestry service. If a brush fire is that big, are you really sace much? Like i said save the structures and what ever else you can, if it burns off, you wont have to worry about goin' back to the same spot for a pretty good while.
Seen them worn once, then they were worn by a crew from the city and that was because they had the city safety officer with them. They wore them all of five minuits before COMMON SENSE took over. My opinion is they will do more harm than good, definatly lower the time before heat exaustion sets in.
In my area scott packs are not required in brush fires. WE have two brush trucks no packs are in either of those vehicles. Several of our crew are forest fire trained. Our SOP don't require it. You are going to be running about and it takes allot of energy.