I was just watching the tv show The Academy Season 3, of the Orange County Fire Academy, and I noticed in one of the episodes that when they are raising the fly section to the 35 ft ground ladder they raise and lower the ladder fly sections towards the building. 

I was always trained fly sections out.  Does anyone else operate in this way or know why they do it that way?

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Can you please post of the video or the site you seen this at?

The link wont allow me to copy it. It is on hulu.com, search the academy, and it is Season 3 episode 5

Yes it looks good to me and how we teach our students here in Michigan. As long you are talking about the 7:00 minute area of this video.


This makes it easier for you to raise the ladder buy having the rope and pulley on the outside of the ladder meaning it would be away from the building.

If you have the fly towards the building you can break the glass with the ladder easier if that's what you're talking about.

Thats what I was going to say too.  I have done it with the fly in and it works fine, also like T.J said its eaiser to work the rope with it on the outside.

Im not sure how this would affect (if at all) the head first bail, anyone know if it would?  Never asked any of the instructors when I was on the FAST in my county and now Im curious.

You can always just flip the ladder though after you break the window.  Depending on the situation I'm not always a fan of breaking the window with the ladder.  I like to get up there with a hook so I can clear the whole frame out.  

I was taught FLY-IN for Wooden ladders and FLY-OUT for Aluminum.  I was told it has to do with the design/geometry of the ladders.  Also, my current FD used to run FLY-IN on Aluminum ladders until we started placing ladders for bailing out windows.  OLD STYLE: the thought was that with FLY-IN, if you were carrying a victim down ladder and stepped from upper section to lower, you actually got the other rung under your heel.  If that was done FLY-IN, you would place foot where you thought rung was and only hit it with the toes of your boots.  This was a safety consideration until we started ladder bail-outs.  Now, with FLY-OUT, if you bail, you do not face plant into the top of the base section of the ladder like you would with the FLY-IN.  All the reason of venting and operating the fly/halyard make sense, but those can be adjusted for.  IF YOU REALLY HAVE TO BAIL, you don't have time to slow down and deal with the base section approaching your face.  And the FF behind you definitely does not want you slowing down.

I usually raise 24 or 26' with the fly in for easy when working with one person, but was always taught fly out once deployed.  I'm now curious as well, if it does effect the stability of the ladder and if a failure were to occur then who is really at fault; I would think best to go with manufacturers recommendations.

The ladder can certainty be used to break the glass, but this is hazardous!  I have seen sheets of glass ride straight down the ladder and almost take the fire fighters hands off!  If you going to do it, throw it in and step way back.

Thank you

... I would strongly suggest contacting the manufacturer.  An engineer at one ladder manufacturing company told me their ladders were designed to be used only with the FLY OUT. ...

Correction to my previous post:

Once raised, I flip it around for fly-out, sorry for any confusion.


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