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Have you ever used 2 1/2" line for an interior attack,in a private home? How was it and why did you use it?

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yes, I have used a 2.5" line with a SB nozzle on a residence. We pulled up, heavy fire showing from all rear 1st floor windows of a 2.5 story wood frame. It looked like to much for an 1.75" to handle efficiently. perhaps I was wrong, but we got control of the fire very quick. I really credit the crew I was with. They did an incredible job.
We use the 2.5 when a private residence is more like a commercial structure. Meaning the 5000 sq ft and up. The fire load and structure often do not match. The same fire load in a literal commercial structure would require sprinklers and very specific construction type. Residences do not have these restrictions making the fire much more dangerous if it gets into the anti-gravity devices itself. If we are going to make an interior attack, quick control is the key. A 1.75 alone simply cannot provide us that coverage. We give the officer the option to either pull his 2.5 and committ with it or use the wye with two 1.75 working in conjuntion.

We also have good success with the One-Two punch tactic. An exterior attack with the 2.5 followed by an interior 1.75. We use this tactic when the offcier has a less experienced crew. Gaining control of the fire greatly improves any scene.
I have never stretched into a pd with big line all though myself and my crew have used it for a blitz attack on several jobs. We used it as Marty calls it a one two punch. It has worked very well on all occasions but one.This is the one time we should have taken it inside i think. We had a job in a single story frame. My engine was 3rd due. The first due eng pulled a 2.5 and knocked down a large amount of fire on the outside of the house. There was a large attached deck, propane tanks, a jacuzzi, and a screen house it was a mess. My crew stretched a 1 3/4 into the fire building. We were planning a good old fashion 1 or 2 room a** kicking when we encountered heavy heat, zero visibility, the tic I had was whited out. We made the hall way and were flowing water and it was doing nothing. We backed out and came outside to a fireball. The fire had auto exposed into the soffit which let it run free in the attic all proir to my co's arrival. The first due co knocked the fire down. There was no gable vent to see fire conditions in the attic so it went un noticed. We never even knew it was up there until we got inside by the hallway we heard what sounded like a freight train no bs. A long story short we were amazed that this house held so much fire and it went un noticed as long as it did. I personally think a 2.5 would have been great inside this job becuase I will say this the line we had was doin nothing for us. Since then we are not shell shocked but we have enhanced our training on the 2.5 being stretched into pd's just in case. My guys have an all new respect for it. We train with 4 man stretches and it works out great. If you can advance the big line inside you can advance any line. Its always good to think out of the box. To the guys that have used it inside a pd. What was your staffing how many brothers did it take to get to the seat of the fire?

Hope Ray and you guys dont mind but heres the link to the fire please tell me what you think. Just an fyi at the start of the video me and my crew were already inside for a 2 minutes or so trying to advance. We made the hallway and that where it all went down. The fire conditions on the outside were not like that when we went in. It was alot less. This house had enough and took off. The house was a one story frame 20x50. Looking at the video the side with the deck is the bravo or 2 side. We entered the charlie or 3 side to cut it off. The rooms that were on fire were a converted garage and an addition. The whole house was vaulted cielings varnished panelling throughout. The hallway on was were the attic section started. This house had the craziest layout Ive ever seen. I really wanna know what people think should we have stretched the 2.5 inside? I have been goin over this to myself ever since.
Good video! I would have liked to see how that roof vent went. From the video, it looked like the roof timbers had a lot of fire on them.
I have used a 2 1/2 in a building fire.. It was a resturant and the captain said to pull the 200ft 2 1/2 preconnect. This call i was only on the job for about 6 months. Their was heavy fire above my head but more towards the rear of the building visibility was good.
The problem!!!!
I walked into the building holding the hose. The second problem the captain behind me didnt really back up to much. That nozzle sucked right into my armpit and it was the hardest thing ever to control that hose.
I dont know why I wasnt on my knees. I knocked down a lot of fire and we knocked it down very quickly but I was beat up...Since that day forward I never ever wanted to use the 2 1/2 hose again.

Now 5.5 years later.....Not to mention names but recently an American Co had recently come to Canada and brought me back to the basics of firefighting and from this day forward I'm not afraid of using the 2 1/2 for any fire. I was taught the right and easy wat to use that line. I recently held a training session on using the 2 1/2 for interior firefighting and I caught the eye of my brother and sisters. Now if I can get the Chief to put a solid bore on it Im game for using it alot more as we never use it..The reason we never used it was we thought it was just to hard..But now that we know how to use it and advance it with confidance we can use it when needed. But trainig on it more will make it that much easier.

So thanks to the boys from BHI for getting us to opening our eyes.
-Absolutely. As a back up to an 1.75 and as an aggressively stretched initial line.
-The 2.5 was an is used in my FD as an initial line in accordance with the following principles.
1. If the fire has control of more than two residential sized rooms
2. In a commercial occupancy
3. If the fire is of an undetermined size and location with a significant smoke condition regardless of occupancy (residential or commercial)
4. If the fire is below grade; ie basement, built on grade...
5. If the line is stretched as a back up line
-Stay safe.
I haven't had a 2 1/2" in a PD, but I have definetly been in some PD's that called for the big line.

I actually had a former Captain after a very long firefight in an attached garage give me a high five and say "Damn that was a hellova fight!" The fact was, we didn't do anything with our 1 3/4" handline, until the contents of the fire burnt down to a level that was manageble for us to darken down with the smaller handline.

Without a doubt, the "Intimidation Factor" is a big deciding factor for many Company Officers when it comes to pulling the duece and a half. Training, with the stretch, advancement, and as important or more so, the proper PUMPING of the 2 1/2 is a MUST!!!

I am VERY fortunate that we just had a larger commercial building come available to us to train in. We trained for six days on the site and for three days, I taught the 2 1/2 evolution. We stretch, pumped, flowed and advanced the big line flowing over 260gpm with three FF's at a time. It wasn't the easiest stretch either. They had to make a hallway, double back into a movie theater, then advance down the aisle of the theater. I can't tell you how many thousands of gallons we flowed in that place. But in the end, ALOT of Brothers and Sisters found that the line was no where near as bad as they thought it would be.

I can't wait, now that I am a boss, to get the chance to pull the big line on a good working PD with a lot of fire showing. I know my company will be ready... Train Train, Train...

I also can't help but notice that no one on the thread has brought up the ADULTS accronym yet. It is a great tool to use when deciding when to switch to the 2 1/2"

A dvanced fire conditions upon arrival
D efensive fire
U nable to determine fire location or size
L arge uncompartmented fire area
T ons of water
S standpipe operations

This accronym has been out for quite awhile and I like it. It is simple to use and has a lot of great points. I believe it came out of FDNY or another "Right" coast department years ago.

Be safe Brothers,

We used to use a 2 1/2 more often than we do now due to manpower, but it is not uncommon for us to pull it for a pd fire. Basic rule of thumb is fire in one window 1 3/4, fire in two windows 2 1/2. We also have what we call a working line set up. It is 100' of 1 3/4 to a wye to a smooth bore to 200' of 2 1/2 ( I think we borrowed this from chicago). We pull that for a attached garage, we can spin it down to the 2 1/2 to knock down the fire and then spin on the wye again to go in and mop up. This works well with the right crew. It seems though the new people we are getting just can't handle the bigger line no matter how much we train. Anybody else see that? If you got the right crew though you just can't lose pulling the bigger line, Stay safe.
Brandon - That is a very interesting statement "It seems though the new people we are getting just can't handle the bigger line no matter how much we train." Usaully with repetition the skill is picked up. What is it about using the 2 1/2 that they fail at? Is it controling the nozzle, advancement, fatigue?
When we start the recruits with Engine Week at the CFA, we start with all 2 1/2". I got this idea from Ed Burwell one day, ( I know, a bonified Truck guy should not be commenting!) but he hit the nail on the head. Have students work 2 1/2" for the first week, having a great attention to detail with movements, assignments etc, and by the end of the week they move the line without problems. This includes all the "tricks" we could teach them. The second week we move to 1 3/4" and now there is no problem.

As far as Brandon seeing the 2 1'2" to 1 3/4" reduction, the Bridgeport CT FD used to do this years ago with their primary attack lines. They had 150 ft of 1 1/2" over 2 1/2" ( this was prior to the late 70s). It worked extremely well for them, as they had a huge fire response during their "war years" They would try interior attacks, and if that did not work, they had a exposure line already set up. They made some incredible stops on 2 1/2 story and 3 story wood frames, many of them fully involved on arrival, with allyways 3 feet from each other.
Be safe
Russ - I wrote an article on that very topic a few years ago "Practice Big Work Small" based on the theory that if you can handle the 2 1/2 then using 1 3/4 you'll be unstopable. .
Ray, I might have over stated that we have problems with the new people. I think right now it's just that we aren't having the fires in the past couple of years that we have in the past. Also we have had a huge turn over recently, I think they will get it, they just need a little extra push. Fatigue is the biggest obstacle, in my opinion they don't realize how much work this job actually is at times. Thanks for the reply


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