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What is your department's policy as to which size line is used for High-Rise fires? What nozzle do you use for High-Rise applications? Oh! How much hose do you take up initially?

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Our department recently transitioned from 100' of 1 3/4" with a low pressure fog to two 75' sections of 2 1/2" light weight hose with a 1 1/8" smooth bore nozzle. The amount of water available through the 2 1/2" and the smooth bore is tremendously better since we have buildings that were built with only 65 psi required at the top, not to mention the ability to pass debris through the smooth bore. We still have some of the firefighters that would like to have the 1 3/4" packs back on the truck and it is something we are battling at this time.
I'm glad to see that I'm not the only one fighting that battle. I've been called a )*(&(*)*&*I idiot for steering our change to the bigger line and smoothbore but even if it means a beating, they're not getting a cherry. Keep the faith brother.
Help what can I to change the minds of the officers on my Dept. We carry 100ft of 1 3/4 with a turbojet. Flirting with disaster. We have two buildings like the one in the houston mayday video. Sprinklers only in the center core. If or when we get a fire in that building we have not a chance We have no 2 1/2 we went to 3" years ago I feel it is to big. I am pushing for 2 1/2 with smoothe bore tip. BROTHERS send me some amo I read everything I can get on fire streams and fire attack . If you have any back up you can send me please do!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Dave McGrails book has by far the best explanation about 2 1/2" lines with smoothbore I've ever read. "Fire Department Operations for High-Rise and Standpipe Buildings."

A fog nozzle is going to clog. Run this by them. The M and M test. Take some peanut M&M's, put them in the line just before the nozzle. Pressure up the line and see the horrible flow you'll get. Standpipe systems may very well have debris in them. Use that as a point. Run the same test with a smoothbore as well.

Have them run tests at low pressures. You will get a better stream with a smoothbore.

Now be ready for this; they are going to want to run two lines side by side out behind the station where they are going to show you that the fog stream supposedly gets the same reach as the smoothbore line. Where you can hush them up is put a tank of some sort, drop tanks from Heavy Tankers/Tenders would great for this. Set the lines back from the tanks at the streams break over points and see which tank fills up first. The smoothbore tank will fill much faster. The proof is in the pudding.

I'm fighting the same fight brother. Keep the faith.
Well, glad to hear that I'm not the only firefighter from a major metropolitan FD that is fighting this battle! In our department, the High Rise SOP's call for one 50' section of 2 1/2" and two 50' sections of 1 3/4" with a gated wye; 2 1/2 to 1 1/2 reducer; and a standard fog-straight stream nozzle to be brought up to the floor below the reported fire floor by the first "quint" engine company on arrival. The second arriving "quint' acts as a truck company; the third arriving "quint" operates as an engine and brings up two more 50' sections of 1 3/4 with a fog nozzle, (to connect to the wye from the first engine); and another 50' section of 2 1/2; and the fourth quint brings up three sections of 2 1/2 line. Yes I know, we have been very lucky in getting away with this. We've had some hi-rise fires that didn't go well either because of our choice of hoselines. I don't like to talk negatively about our FD, but I've been reading about this for years in Fire Engineering, and experience with my own FD has vindicated what others of you have written. In previous years, the nozzles on our High Rise packs were standard 125 gpm @ 100 psi fog nozzles, but with a breakaway 7/8" smooth bore adapter. However, our newer nozzles are the 150 gpm @ 75 psi fog/straight-stream; so that's an improvement but the problem remains. We did have an apartment fire on the 5th floor of an apartment building primarily inhabitted by elderly persons. This building has long hallways with the standpipe connections only in the stairwells. We did the usual hook up with the 2 1/2 on the 4th floor stairwell, followed by the 100' of 1 3/4 connected to the wye in the 5th floor hallway and advanced it to the apartment on fire. The "tip" or nozzle just made it to the door of the burning apartment, which was well involved. We held it at the doorway, but had to extend the second line another 50' in a dark, smoky hallway to finally extinguish the fire. It was rather chaotic for a while. Also, another line had to be stretched to the 6th floor to the apartment immediately above the fire apartment on the 5th floor, as fire had extended to that apartment by auto-exposure. Fortunately by the grace of God, both fires were extinguished quickly and their were no serious injuries or deaths. Several elderly persons were evacuated, but many were able to "shelter in place". But I too fear that it's just a matter of time before we have a major hi-rise fire incident that exposes all of the flaws and weaknesses of our SOP, especially on the size of attack lines and choice of nozzles. I hope not, but experience is a powerful and unforgiving teacher; and the question is will we listen to and learn from the lessons of other departments rather than coasting on our own "this works for us" approach.
Three inch hose is not a handline. How are you using the 3" hose. Do you use it to start from a standpipe outlet and then wye off to 2 - 1/3/4 lines?
On the DFD we have two different set ups, for box alarms & reports of smoke our initial engine company will carry 150' of 1 3/4" hose with a smooth bore nozzle and a 15/16" tip. Our hose packs are in 50' sections and set up in a horseshoe using 3 seperate velcro straps, the straps not only keep the pack together, they are also used to strap open our bales if we need to extend a line, this works great because the packs ride on our scba bottles leaving our hands free for carrying tools or using the handrail on stairs, the truckies will also bring 100' of 1 3/4" that they will drop in the stairwell near the standpipe. If we are the second arriving crews with fire or if we are first arriving with obvious fire conditions we take the same amount of hose 150' for the engine and 100' from the truckies but it will be 2 1/2" with a smooth bore. We carry a high-rise kit that has a pressure gauge, elbows, spanners, pipe wrenches, adapters, door chocks & straps and various other tools.
Does anyone have experience with using lightweight 2" hose for hi-rise standpipe operations? Would it be worthwhile to pursue trying to get our FD to switch from 1 3/4" with 75psi fog nozzles to 2" lines in either 50 or 75" sections with 1" smooth bore tips? Would this provide adequate gpm with reduced friction loss without incuring the extra weight of 2 1/2" lines for standpipes? Any comments or suggestions welcome.
In my opinion, no. It's about the flow. We just transitioned from 1 ¾” high-rise attacklines to 2 ½” mainly because a high-rise (office or apartment) is considered a commercial occupancy.

So with that said; we want 250 GPM from our attacklines. I consider 2” attackline to be in the same class as the 1 ¾”. With 250 GPM flowing from a 2” line, the friction loss is 35 PSI per 100’ vs. 15 PSI for the 2 ½”; huge difference.

We can over-pressurize our 2 ½” with 1 1/8” smoothbore and get 300-325 GPM with only 20-25 PSI friction loss where as to do this with a 2”, well I think the math will speak for its self.
Correction; I misspoke. The friction loss for 2" @ 250 GPM is 50 PSI per hundred...Les
Thanks Les, I appreciate the feedback. Stay safe!!
We use 3" for supply and exposure lines. The only attack lines we have are 13/4 with turbojets. We only have 5" on the new tower and the only reason we have that is the salesman told the chief that it would take 5"to supply the 2000gpm pump or it woul have 3" also. They get upset when I bring up 2 1/2 with a smooth bore. High rise pack is 100ft 1 3/4 with a turbojet no tools or nothing . Wont even get a pressure gage


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