I was operator on the 2nd engine into a working house fire. Another engine and ladder (Same station) first arrival with heavy fire showing. But all told about 6 pieces of equipment show up about the same time.
The issue, one line pulled off by the first engine crew and my crew (I'm the operator) pulls a 2nd line off the same engine. Once we get it flaked out I tell the driver of the engine to charge the line. At this time he is pulling a 3rd line. I yell to him that they are ready to go in and I'm told "I'll get to it when I can". I tell him they are inside and then they begin to yell on the radio for water. It might have been a minute or two before he charged the line after I first asked him.
At the same fire a fourth line is pulled off my engine. I'm thinking its for mop up by there is still heavy fire in the rear. So I ask the driver of the first engine to supply my engine. He is being supplied by a 5" line about 300 feet from the hydrant and pushing 3 - 1 3/4 lines.He gives me the dummy look. I say Chief B (not going to use any numbers as to associate it with a local Co) needs the line. Driver 1 says Chief B isn't running the fire and pretty much refuses to supply me. I radioed the driver telling him I was ready for water (I knew he didn't even connect the line) when he said he'snot ready I then radio'd the Chief to notify him that I was not being supplied and no water was forth coming. Mostly yo protect myself in case someone got hurt due to lack of water.
To be honest and fair I did raise my voice more because of he noise but then because my crew was inside with no water. The 2nd incident I was just plan pissed by then and was ready to punch him in the head.
Was I wrong, Was he wrong. How could this be handled differently. I was at a total loss, 37 yrs and I never seen someone refuse to charge a line or supply another engine.
Hard to sat without knowing your SOP's. Most of this stuff should be addressed in department tactical procedures. No reason why you can't know in advance which company should be stretching off which engine and who should supply who. And how. Variations are necessary at times but a basic standard plan should be in place,
A few random points and questions based on my limited understanding of the overall picture:
Why enter a house fire with an uncharged line? Especially since it sounds like there was a heavy fire condition.
Seems like an overall lack of command and control. Fourth line being stretched when previous lines aren't even charged yet? The fireground should not be a free for all. The IC HAS to know the status and location of ALL lines.
Sounds like there is at least enough staffing that pump operator shouldn't have to be stretching a line. Once again, this is especially true since earlier lines had not been charged yet.
I would say the other pump operator did not handle things well at all. But you have bigger problems, IMO.
When the fourth line was pulled all lines were already charged.
As far as the uncharged line, many companies are now going in without an uncharged line as it makes it easier to maneuver until you get to the seat of the fire. Especially if you have a knowledgeable crew and operator.
I guess my issue is; you have a working fire, you know they took a line of your engine, someone says charge the line, why would there be any hesitation in doing so. Whats the worse that could happen if you did, Hose charged in the bed. As opposed to possibly injured firefighters if you don't.
I can understand not being able to for whatever reason. But to out and out refuse to charge a line is unforgivable.
If you're an operator, and it's your crew inside, I don't see why you shouldn't go charge your crew's line, regardless of which rig it's been pulled off of. On my department, we have each other's backs. If I see an operator getting overrun with events, I do what I can to help him, whether that's getting lines stretched &/or charged, ladders placed or whatever. Same goes for supplying water to your engine. If he says he's not ready, head on over & help him hook it up/ open the line. If he physically stops you from doing it, make a note, and do what you did, updating command on the radio of your lack of water. OR, just break the 4th line off your rig and hook up to one of his unused outlets...
Did you each work for different departments or something? Seems like a pretty dysfunctional situation, and I guess I'd be frustrated too, but maybe the other guy just didn't have a clear concept of the priority. If you've had 37 years on the job, I imagine you've got just a bit of seniority, so pull rank, and either put the (relative) rookie in his place after the fire, or if it's a safety concern, write it up so the department can learn/grow from it. I guess it's been a few months at this point, so the time has come and gone, but it might also mean it would be a good time to bring the same situation up as a training scenario, to get more department direction on what should have happened...