hay tyler just thought that i would comment on your post. on my dept we pack up on the way but dont realy fully dawn in tell we get on scene it kind of puts a damper on getting out of the truck, so we wait tell were at the front door. and some of the rest of the people that commented about it being a race well thats just an extra report some one has to wright up because some on got injured which is not fun because im the one that has to do the report. Its not a race and takeing someones line is not right eather, but in ower town it realy dont matter because we are the main dept so we roll no matter what.
I don't understand the fascination with wearing your face piece in the rig. It's hot, it fogs up and you have limited visibility (like looking down when you get off the rig or tripping on a stretched line). To me someone getting off the rig wearing their face piece means they're ready for a race; which also means that you simply aren't taking the time to scan the scene and do your own personal size up.
I know that when my engine is first in, while I'm grabbing tools and/or stretching the line I'm looking at the incident: am I familiar with the building/construction type, have we been here before and for what, can I see any hazards or issues, you know, the waste of time stuff you can't see when you're racing to grab a hose and be first in.
As for taking in someone else's line, if your IC wants you do that then that's how your department operates but it would never happen here. Our engines have due assignments dependent upon the type of incident and occupancy. And when we're first on scene we've done our size ups and we will mask up when we're ready to stretch in. To show up and think you can grab a line (or even be assigned to) shows weak SOPs, training and leadership. I agree with Don that to grab the line because you're ready and the other crew isn't is freelancing. But unless you have a crew of lollygaggers on the first in engine then the IC shouldn't be reassigning crew assignments.
My question is why you would even WANT someone else's line. If you're on the engine, wouldn't you have pulled your own line? I always do what I can to pull a line off of my own engine whenever possible. However if the first(front of building) or second(rear/basement) due engine has a long layout(third due backs up first at the hydrant and fourth backs up second) then you are some times forced to pull a line from another company. However you still want your own line. The reason we also try to avoid this is because the driver does not have to charge your line if you pull off their piece until your engine has them hooked up to the hydrant. Hope that all made sense. Companies in DC still try to steal each other's fire, but they do it with their own hose lines by just doing their job correctly and quickly.
I honestly don't see any reason to mask up en route unless you aren't good at your job. Even the 30 seconds to mask up is generous. It's really not that hard. Many people also take off their gloves to mask up. Go home and practice with your gloves on.(This isn't directed towards you Don even though it's posted as a reply to you)
Well this is a heated conversation. We pack up in the trucks and turn our bottles on we don are face piece at the door. We have this in our SOG's and the reason is this. We need people to see what is going on when they get off the rig and they need to be able to hear the orders they are giving. It is hard enough to hear with everything on the fire ground and rigs coming in and harder with hood, flap from helmet and the hard breathing you are doing with the air going. This helps keep are guys safe. Also in are SOPS we never pull a hand line off someone else's rig for a initial attack just because we are not sure when the last time there hose has been tested and we never use anyone else's air bottles neither because we don't know what their air quality is. Don't get me wrong most of our neighboring departments get their lines tested and their bottled air quality checked yearly. This is just done for the safety of our members and our neighboring departments know this and is not a insult to them or to say they don't do what they should just safety first and they have no problem with that at all.
I'm curious are you career or a volly? How big/busy is your department? Also wondering your age/experience.
im 19 im a volly my department is a single station with about 10 pieces of equipment and we average around 1,800 calls a year not including our medic we have
Do whatever your FD tells you to do. Like I have said repeatedly, none of what you said would fly around here.
Frankly, I have grown weary of you and your tales of how much better your company is than everybody else.
Derek is right, this has turned into a heated conversation, but one should also take a step back and look at the bigger picture. Anyone who has spent some time on this site reading threads and replies by members......other than word games and helmet color stuff.....would find some heated debates. However, it should truly speak volumes when you have several seasoned FFs who have engaged in such heated debates......agreeing on the same topic. That alone should send a message to people.
We often hear about people wanting to learn and so forth, yet silly topics like helmet colors, rig colors, POVs, and games, etc tend to garner the attention as opposed to something more. Well, folks, what did you learn here? Sure this is an easy topic addressed by a new, young FF, for whatever reason......yet at the same time have several seasoned, experienced, FF agreeing on the same concept.......which is not masking up until you are ready to go in, not on the rig.
The reasons for not masking up on the rig are plentiful and being repeated by the same people. It comes down to size up, visibility, and just accomplishing basic tasks before one would even have to worry about masking up and going in. There IS quite a bit of work to do before rushing right on in, especially if first due. You are no good if you get injured because you can't see due to mask fogging issues....or dumber, being on air while outside an IDLH environment.....or even reduced physical capacity because your oxygen intake is limited by working with a facepiece on. Frankly masking up while in a rig does not make sense.
Now one can quote SOPs, or dept ops etc....and quite frankly if your SOPs actually state this....then it is time to revisit such SOP/Gs and change these. Such measures should not be part of an SOP/G because it limits the size up and overall scene picture.
Frankly the 30 (ish) seconds you save being masked up enroute can actually be a bigger hinderance to safety, to other FFs, to the potential victims, and to the property owners....and quite simply, because of the reasons already noted. Being blunt...masking up enroute is unsafe and unprofessional. There are plenty of opportunities to practice masking up while there is no fire, rather than trying to justify saving 30 (ish) seconds on a fireground.
To quote our illustrious colleague from another sight...BING FREAKING O!! John you couldn't possibly be more right on with your latest post.
My department is a smaller volunteer department and we are very fortunate that we train every week with our mutual aid companies. My company and the one to our east train every week and with the other two we train once a month.
That being said our company SOP is that if we are going to a working fire we are to come off of the rigs masked up. We usually wait until we are about a minute away so that fogging up etc is not an issue. When we go to fires we know our assignments beforehand due to our training each week, we constantly practice scenarios at our burn trailer during the year and know what the first engine, the first truck, second engine, and so on need to do once they arrive.
Of course this depends on the situation. if we are mainly doing exterior work we do not mask up in the truck. But if we know we are going to stretch a hand line or search we mask up in the rig.
As for stealing another companies hand line that is BS. I would stretch my own hand line as the back up hand line and advance it to the door. If by then the initial line and crew are still busy masking up or having issues we will go in first and they will become the back up hand line. But stealing another companies hand line is pointless. Work together, not against each other.
So Nick, are you saying that you single mindedly do the assignment given? What I mean is when I am assigned a task as I approach the building I do my own size-up. I look for doors, windows, unusual construction features, utilities, signs of pets, cars in the driveway, etc,...in reality ANYTHING that gives me an advantage if things turn cow shit. Much easier to do without the face piece on.
I just don't see what is gained by getting off the rig masked up. If firefighters are unable to mask up in the short amount of time it takes to charge the line once it is laid out I recommend an extensive donning the mask training program.
Everyone still needs to do their own size up and assessment of the scene, every single time. It may be the one thing that saves your life.
I personally have no real big problems with my face piece and limited field of view. Not much of my field of vision is cut off and I have never had any issue with fogging. I do not mask up every single time we get a call for something that may be a structure fire, only if it is a confirmed working structure fire and we know that we will be going interior.
And yes training and practice are key, hence why we do it a lot. However I have seen many times where people fumble around, forget to put their hood up etc because they are caught up in the heat of the moment and just want to get in.
Here is a question though, would you consider masking up before you arrive on scene if you know it is a working house fire and there is confirmed entrapment?