I am looking for information on cellar fires. Fire attack tactics, ventilation methods, overhauling and any other ideas, information, or suggestions.

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Very good advice. Thanks alot.
This is a viable tactic.. as long the flooring isn't supported by plywood I beams (which are prone to failure by the time the FD arrives) and you know the exact location of the fire in the basement! Cutting the floor hole in the wrong spot can spread the fire.
I am presuming you are talking residential and not commercial. The majority of residential basements will usually have small windows which probably won't allow ingress/egress, but can be taken out for coordinated simultaneous ventilation and attack. If I were going to open the floor above the basement, I might consider using a cellar nozzle and a smaller opening, instead of manpower on the initial knockdown. Coupled with ventilation, this tactic may cool the area and darken the fire so attack crews will not be taking such a beating from the heat and smoke.

The following link is from a 2007 article, which gives a good checklist to consider.

most definately. With your ingress being the means of the basement door, you can allow ventilation using the smaller windows in the foundation. (where available.) These windows also provide a small opportunity to get a rotating basement nozzle inside to start to get the fire in check to provide your firefighters a better window of opportunity for rapid fire suppression. Cutting a hole in the first floor is acceptable but realistically for a smaller basement fire, you would want to limit the damage to the first floor as much as possible. Having your smoke and heat power venting from the basement into the first floor could cause more damage than needed. Good size-up and proper ventilation can make basement fires easier to contain and put out.
Cut hole in floor above fire next to window (no further than 2 feet from window should be your "closer" hole) just prior to attack to making stretch down stairs to hit the fire. Big fire or not your still going to need to send a crew or two down there to really make sure its mopped up and for better ventialtion as well as a primary search anyway because how many houses have converted bedrooms or apartments in the cellar now?

Also just a note:
The difference between a basement and a cellar is that a basement has more than one egress.
Nice article.
Must Read

Tactical Safety: Cellar Stairs”…

Being able to vent the cellar or basement should be the first priority. Like what has already been said, you could take out any windows to the basement to help cool things off for the attack line. Just be sure to take out windows closest to the fire and not behind where the attack crew is entering. You could open up the first floor and risk having your other team beat the attack crew to the basement or open a window on the first floor over the fire and cut a small hole over the fire and use the cellar nozzel to knock it down. No matter how you do it, you have to vent it to make it safer for your crew that is entering the area. Remember why we vent:

To cool the area and to provide better visibility within the structure.

Stay Safe!!!
Move to a barrier island in the Atlantic Ocean where buildings are built on slabs and basements are very, very rare.
It worked for me. :-)
Yeah, I'm definitely there with that.
Send me your email address to dubree.douglas @rigov.org and I'll send you a ppt and a pdf on basement and cellar fires.

That would be outstanding, thank you very much. My email addrress is sandersf@kirkwoodmo.org


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