With much of the nation locked in by cold and ice, I thought it would be useful to share a quiz that deals specifically with cold weather firefighting. If you're game, here's the scenario:

It's 0212 hours and the crew of Ladder 9 have been dispatched as the 2nd due truck on a building fire. For Ladder 9's crew, this will be the 4th response of the evening, two of which were working fires. Because of the previous jobs, there's some standing water remaining in the ladder pipe and the master stream nozzle which is positioned at the tip of the rear-mount aerial.

The temperature is 34F but the wind is still -- that is until the driver puts pedal to the metal and Ladder-9 rockets through the empty streets at about 40mph. The apparatus speed of 40mph acts like the wind, and by factoring in the ambient temperature of 34F, the wind-chill is 19F. Brrrrrrrr. http://www.weatherimages.org/data/windchill.html

Here's the question. With a wind-chill of 19F, how quickly will the standing water in the master stream and pre-piped waterway freeze???

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Comment by Doug on January 29, 2009 at 1:55am
It won't. It's sloshing around in the pre-pipe while the truck is moving. As long as water is moving, it will not freeze. That's why the tell us to always crack open the nozzle on handlines when not in use during extremely cold temps.

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