Even if the group seems to be "asleep", I hope some of you, as US FF, would be able to answer.

For me, the main job of a FF is to attack the fire. If someone call the fireservice, this is because of fire, so the job is to attack and kill it. Of course you must save people but the main "subject" is fire. To kill the fire I use water, and to flow water I use a nozzle. So, I think that I must know the way to use a nozzle. So I must train in order to be able to change flow rate or pattern in the dark, I must train to know the distance at which I can flow water, I must train to be able to cool without producing too much steam and so on.
So, I train.

On the other side, when I have a look at US training video, at discussion in forum about training, and also at the subject you can post in, on internet US FF forum, I see nothing about nozzle. In many cases, you can post messages in subject like "RIT", "Ventilation", "Save yourself", "LODD" and so on, but if you want to post a message about nozzle, you would face a "little" problem as there is no opened subject about that.

I tried to seach on firechief, fireengeenering, firehouse and so on about article about nozzle techniques but found nothing.
On the other side, US forum are full of accident histories and of messages about LODD and full of "survival" techniques as if the goal was to go into dangerous place to see if surviving would be possible. And if you delete all the articles about LODD, RIT and accident, and delete all commercial adds claiming to offer the best to "survive" you would see your FF Magazines would have only front and back cover.

My question is: do you really train on firefighting or do you train in order to survive, due to the fact that the lack of firefighting training put yourself in great danger? And in that case, why don't you do real nozzle training? No one teach you? It seems not to be intersting?

Thanks a lot for your answer

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Replies to This Discussion

Doesn't hose handling, fire attack, fire streams, and the like incorporate what you ask? I am sure you can look at any of the magazine site's online content and find these. If not, please enlighten us US FF's on "real nozzle training" by starting a forum in which you contribute your knowledge which in turns begins a dialogue of learning.
Nothing on online web magazine. When I talk on nozzle training, I know about knowing eg that the size of dropplet change according to the flow rate, the time of pulse I need to perfomrm to cool gazes, and so on.
Fire attack? yes of course, but what kind of attack depending on what?
If you can giveme a link to a mag article, it would be nice.

Thanks a lot
I think you may have better luck searching for the technique also known as penciling. You will find articles on this. One reason it probably isn't a huge topic of conversation is that it is a controversial topic for some departments.

I cannot give you a specific article because I am unsure what you exactly desire. If it's penciling/pulsing then Google/search that.

Penciling has its application as does dragging a 2½" instead of the 1¾", but it isn't a standard or even practiced in a lot of departments because of a difference of thinking.

Not my quote but one I use:
Firefighting: Is a science of vague assumption based upon debatable figures developed from inconclusive observations performed with equipment of problematic accuracy by persons of doubtful reliability and of questionable mentality.
Well, when I type "penciling/pulsing" on google.com, here is what I get:
- First, 2 videos. one from youtube, one fromdailymotion. Both showing an attack method. Video taken in Belgium. I know that as I'm the one holding the nozzle.
After that the result are from www.flashover.fr a French language web site (I'm the webmaster of this site) or from the Tantad Web site which is the main place for flashover instruction. And I am also a Tantad Flashover Instructor.
So, no US result. :(

For the fact that for penciling you need a 2 1/2, this goes in the way of ""we are not talking about the same thing". The pulsing penciling method use a 150GPM nozzle, but used at only 40GPM as it's a method for under ventilated fire (thats' what we use in flashover training as flashover container are under-ventilated)

Concering the assumption that firefighting is a science of vague assumption, I hope you are joking. Fire is a chemical process and understanding it is the first key. Thinking it's a "vague process" will give "vague method", so accident and LODD. But I agree with the end of the quote, about "persons of doubtful reliability and of questionable mentality." :) :) :)

Thanks very much for answering and best regards
The quote is one long running sentence and means what it means. Every fire department, even ones who mutual aid with each other have varying philosophies on varying tactics.

I Google firefighting penciling and get a slew of hits. We are in different parts of the world with probably different parameters within our settings.

We are talking apples to oranges in our posts... as I think you think I was talking about penciling with a 2½", which I was not.

OK while Googling not "pulsing penciling" but "firefighting penciling" I found different result. But also google.com dont' get always the same result which is sometimes strange.

See that:

Concerning 21/2 and 1 3/4 OK I had made a bad translation. Not always easy isn'it?

But about the fact that tactic had to vary from one departement to an other, I definitivly not agree. Fire is unpredictable for the one who don't know how it works. But I think this is of no interest to talk about that as we are both sure of what we know.

In all the years I have trained FF its been saving lives then the building. The first priority is safety. What your asking can be taught in drills at when not out on a call. This is how we did it for years. I know this is important to you but safety comes first.
Well, everywhere, FF are trained to save life and building, of course! And of course safety come first. That's common sense. The difference come when we dig a little more. The common opinion is that we face two methods: one is learning to drive and spend many times for that, the other seems to be learning only the basic of driving but put air-bag in the car.

Both are about safety. But not the same way. What start to surprise non-US FF, came from the "reason why". Perhaps due to the evolution on firefighting courses: more and more, we use a "comment and justify" method consisting on showing the method in real time, then re-showing it slowly with comment and (that's the key point) justification of all details. Why we are on our knees, why we hold the nozzle by the "pistol grid", why we use this patterb,n why we use this flow rate and so on.
Each point as it's justification, according to scientific reseash, ergonomy, test and so on. The "we used to do this way" has been complelty removed from training as it was "injecting" wrong attitudes. Of course we can say "but with the old method, we had killed many fire" and that's true. But if you just stay, the fire will die by itself. So the fact the fire is out can't be enought to demonstrate something and doing the difference between method.

This way of doing has made many changes in some fire services as some techniques were "non justificable" and in fact were not the most effective. In fact, we were talkiing on "extinction of fire" and know we are talking on "best method for extinction" which is not the same way of thinking.

As we want to improve everytime our method, we are looking for people not doing the same way. But,each time, we want to know exactly how they do, and WHY they do that. When I saw Mc Cormack demonstating "The bounce", flowing in solide bore to the ceilling, I ask "why? but see that no-one is able to answer. And when I say "it will destroy thermal balance" and that the answer I get is "thermal balance is a myth", Waohou!!!???

So the question stay the same; how do you use a nozzle, and why? because if your method are better then ours, we will use it. But we must know why you use nozzle this way.

Best regards
There is no one 'standard' to firefighting tactics. Some departments use smooth bore nozzles while a lot do not. Hitting the thermal layer with controlled/proper streams has its application but it is not the standard. Many U.S. F.D.s initiate fire attack in combination with coordinated ventilation efforts, but this depends on structure type, manpower, and MANY of other variables.

Where one type of tactic may apply to a major metropolitan FD in one type of fire, i.e., smooth-bore penciling on a well involved commercial building fire, it may not be the same for a small rural department on a room and contents fire... who run with fog nozzles, without pistol grips, and only a three-person crew. The tactics utilized should be based upon how they train with the equipment and resources they have. But as you stated, many do it because "that's the way we've always done it".

"The Bounce" technique is just that... a technique that has its application. It isn't used on 'every' fire. It is a technique that shows the FFs spraying the ceiling area. Obviously the application of water in that manner, to the ceiling, may disrupt the thermal layering so something has to be done to account for it, i.e., ventilation. The bounce technique isn't so much about the application of water to the ceiling but more of sweeping the floor in front of you and "bouncing" the stream on the floor, again clearing the way of any debris, but to signal to your backup person to advance.
i will close the can of worms i opened and agree with Gary on this issue.We could debate all day and not get anywhere and its not about who is wrong or right.
Maybe that's the goal of a forum no?

The challenge is not to see who is wrong or right. My opinion is that if you do something, you must (I hope) be able to explain why. Or you are in a "random activty" which can be very dangerous.

What I see is that in many cases, the real reason are not well known. This can explain why some very good way of doing are, years after years, changed and at the end, produce action with no link with original ones.

Also, if the way to use a nozzle (or something else) can't be explained in simple words, we can think the "correct transmission of information" during course would be very hard. And quickly, the only reason would be "That's the best and as i'm the instructor, that's the best and that's all"...
Not sure safety and efficiency of fireservice will take a benefit of that.
riting is not my forte. You have a valid point to say what you said.For me I always learned by doing it and practice not by a book or an an explanation its show me what you want. For me I teach hands on I use all the standards but I teach how I learn and I encourage students to ask and if I can not give an answer they are looking for I find someone who can.We all have different ways of doing things and i sure messed this up. I am finding it hard to get my point across should have left this alone.


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