To be honest, I don't recall my first fire. I don't mean this to sound as though I'm some type of hardcore FF, I honestly don't remember my first fire......which probably means it really wasn't significant.
I do however recall my first fire as a career FF. I finished my academy and was on my second day on the floor as a FF. We had nothing my first day, didn't even turn a wheel for acall, second day, we had an MVA with a car vs motorcycle.....my first call as a career FF. Turned out to be nothing much and that was it.
Later that night, I was watching TV late at night (Top Gun) when the fire tones sounded. While rolling out we heard of multiple calls for this, so we knew we had something. I actually thought we would be second in and was running hydrant catching steps through my head. We were first in and we proceeded on in.
Scared or nerves...yeah sure there is some and truthfully it is a good thing, it keeps you on edge. Even the most mundane fires can hurt and kill FFs. For me I actually thought it was easier going in because training and protocol took over....and quite honestly, the reality of doing what I wanted to do and trained to do, came to mind and really....I thought it was great.
The fire was an apartment complex, smoke showing from the lower level. We went in, the senior FF pulled a line and I went with my officer and forced entry to the basement. We encountered a lot of heavy smoke and went down. We actually lost water when downstairs and an EMERGENCY should have been called. It took a few seconds and we got water back. We ran out of air and switched out with our backup.
In the end the building was saved. Personally training and protocol took over...you just react. What does stick out is when we lost water. At that time it wasn't stressed in training the aspect of calling a MAYDAY or EMERGENCY situation. The thought crossed my mind, but thought it was the officer's call........Lesson learned...it is YOUR call...it desn't matter how senior nor junior you are, recognize the situations and make the call.
my first fire was my 3rd day as a firefighter on a volunteer department i was 18. It was a trailer house that had been buried half way and then built like a regular house. Upon arrival i was nervous as hell thinking and i swear on my life we need to call someone to come put this fire out then i realized that is why i was there. Once on scene fire was under the house and on into one bedroom. the guy that was my training officer took me in and i was scared shitless then he showed that if you apply water the fire goes away. the only problem was the fire got under the house and as we checked extension it was when the training officer fell thru the floor which scared the hell out of me again. All in all i learned alot on that fire
I remember small parts of my first fire (Interior), my actual first fire was fully involved upon arrival and we did all outside defensive work with 2 1/2's and monitors. I got a lot of overhaul work there though!!
My first interior attack was scary at first, stressfull trying to remember all I learned, but than it turned out quite comical for me. I was the irons man, I was with 2 senior firefighters who had the line. We were crawling in a mudroom trying to find the fire, when we got to the living room the fire rolled over our heads, it came out of the smoke right at us and I remember dropping down to my belly, face on the floor scared shitless...Than I hear the nozzleman howling at the fire like a cowboy riding a bull...and the back up man picks me up by my collar and says "You dont want to miss this probie, look up"...and what I saw was the fire slithering across the ceiling over our heads, it was captivating, and I stared at it dumbfounded. The nozzleman than yelled again and opened the line and hit the fire, he pushed it back to the stairs. They asked me to vent a window to our right and I remember shaking as I crawled to it, and fumbled with my halligan as I tried to pop out the glass, I ended up dropping the tool and had to look close to the floor to see it...the back up man was watching me and he was laughing. We ran out of air and left, ofcourse with all of the joking and ribbing from the guys as they teased me about my first fire. It was memorable...
Thanks for the replies guys.
You were watching tv on your second day?!?! haha I wasn't able to even take a look at the tv until I was completely off probation.
It helps to be a fast learner.
haha... two tours isn't enough time to take 7 monthly tests. I think probation is 18 months now actually including the academy out here.
My first was a second story apartment fire, We had just finished a pretty strenouse work out actually when the tones dropped. We were running with four on the engine in which I was riding the hydrant spot. we pull up on scene to see black smoke coming out of the open door and out into the stairwell. I hit the hydrant and then moved up to where the other ff had stretched the line. He gave me the nozzel and in we went in. The kitchen was fully envolved and the smoke had banked down. I have to say that it was easier to knock down then I would have thought. After we came out the tower had arrived and I went to up top to check the roof. As far as feeling scared or nervous, I would say a little nervous but in reality the fire was close to the station and I didn't have much time to dwell on it, the training kicked in and that was that.
My first fire was a small one in a house it looked like someone was making a middle of the floor BBQ pit. We got that out, soaked it good, rechecked to make sure there was nothing hot.. and in two hours got called back and it was horrible, it had fire coming out the windows and i was put in the alley with the asst chief with the tanker and spraying water on both sides of the alley with another person, and i had worked three hours spraying water from a 2 in hose and didnt even realize that my male partner had the 1 in hose, and that there was seven other cities fire dept on the scene.it was huge! I didnt stop until we ran out of water and took the fire engine to the nearest fire hydrant and continued to put out fire.. the weather of course was in the 90's and i was just about to pass out!! my boots gave me huge blisters on my entire feet(because i don';t have the right size because we dont carry size 6's).. I was passed exhaustion.. We worked all thru the night after the main fire was out to make sure there was no hot spots.. we were and still are grateful to the other small towns that helped us out.. i really think if they hadn't of come ladonia would have burned to the ground! We have a small fire dept. we have a total of 22 firefighters but only 12 that show up all the time.. and that day we had three out of town.. so there was only 8 of us and two of the females were passing out water.. and one Jr road guarding... Yes i wont forget that foir a long time!
My first fire was 14 years ago, I was 16 and had just recently finished FF1 at the time which was good enough to earn entry status as a Cadet Firefighter. We had had a barn fire a week prior but I showed up late and and it really was an all exterior and all I did was bull hay, and help with the water supply.
I had just gotten off my part time job at Eckerd Drug store at 8pm and decided I would head to the station for a few hours since Cadets had to be out of the station by 10pm on school nights unless on a call. I came in sat down and was just talkign to the guys, my dad and another firefighter had taken our 2nd engine out in the district to watch my younger brothers baseball game. Were were just hanging out when the printer went off (we had a printer that printed out the call location and type before the tones went off) one of the guys ran to the printer and it said working fire.
As the tones were dropping we were already getting on the rig, 6 of us a full crew so I had to ride in a non pack fold down since I was a cadet. When we got there our 2nd engine with my dad driving was wrapping the hydrant so we went passed them and they laid in to us. The house was a split level house with fire from the bottom level.
After helping pull the line I went to get the spare pack and mask from the side comparment, I got to the line just as fire vented out the lower windows. I was going to make my way down when the guys who were already in were coming back up, they said there was to much fire from that entry point and they wanted to move the line. We grabbed the line moved it to a side entrance and entered the house and put the fire out.
When I came out to change my bottle my dad was waiting on me, he had a mixed emotion look of pride and worry, and wanted to make sure I hadnt been burned. Apparently someone had called for a mayday when we went in the first time after fire vented from the windows. None of us heard this because this is before everyone had radios, so he was a little concerned.
Looking back on it now I feel like it was a whirlwind, I really had no clue what I was doing except listening to what the other guys told me, I can not belive how far I have come in 14 years.
My first was a basement job. It was not as bad as it could have been, it was confined to one area of the basement. The captain put me on the nozzle, backed me up with an experienced firefighter, and said "let's see what you have learned." Scared? Nope. Going through that mental check list you develop in training???? Oh yeah, a dozen times probably. But, when your crew is calm and deliberate you just kind of follow suit. That was thirteen years ago. Thinking back, I believe I was more nervous on my first working fire as a Lieutenant. I think responsibility lends more to "fear" than does ignorance. None the less, my first fire wound up being the start of two loves. First, I am in a job, currently as a paid-on-call but have also worked full-time, that I just love to do. The people help make even the worst days good. Second, and most important, I married that captain, and she is now my Chief. We still have as much fun on the job as we did that night.
awesome story !! and its kewl about the wife !!