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I am currently looking to see how everyone has there preconnects setup. As of right now we have our cross lay preconnects setup with a loop at the bottom them the load is flat loaded and another loop at the last 50ft. I personally hate this load as no one ever pulls it properly and when you just pull the bottom loops you end up with a pile right at your feet but if you pull the last 50 feet it takes forever to clear the hose bed and sometimes it does not clear completely. The other night I setup out cross lay in the minute man load and showed several of our members how it deploys. The Captain came up to me and said he does not like the load because he feels that if you are not on the first truck all the time that you will not pull it properly and it will be a mess. My response was that there is no excuse not to know how to pull the line and if you are not comfortable pulling it then ask the officer to have someone else pull it. Upon returning to the Station the chief approached me and said he feels that the minute man is to complicated and that no one will ever figure out how to pull it and if pulled wrong it will be a mess. I explained once again that everyone will need to train and he said just do it as before. So I am looking for the pro's and con's of this load and any other suggestions for a hose pack. I think the simple flat load is a thing of the past for crosslays and I want to go to the chief once again with come facts so maybe I can convince him to let us change our load. Our crosslays are 2 200ft 1 3/4 and 1 200 ft 2 1/2.

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Replies to This Discussion

First of all you got to understand the load and it should have a method for how it is to be stretched. Also, you got to know what the job ofthe nozzle person is. the nozzle person is responnsible for the nozzle and the working length. If you are showing up at the entry point with the nozzle you are doing it wrong. Our pre-connects are flat loaded similar to Drew. They 2 tiers wide, started with one short fold, a set of ears off each side, two more folds, and a second set of ears on each side, then finish the load out with the pipe being on top. they are 200', can be pulled off each side, has the working length (top set of ears and the pipe) to be shouldered, turn around and get the other set of ears as this will be your travel length. Once you reach the drop point, you flake your working length perpendicular to the door and call for water.
In my volly department we have a version of the minute-man load, but you shold never flake all your hose off the top duringthe stretch. You end up with the nozzle and no hose to advance (bad stretch). We took the minute man (200') concept, with all these loads being out the rear, and started with two short folds, then a loop, two more short folds then a loop, then put the coupling out the front, started with the pipe and put the working length (last 50') on top, connected them and BOOM! Now when we stretch, you shoulder the pipe and the working length, turn and grab the other two loops, as you travel the loops will pull tight one at the time. If it is a short stretch, drop both loops and flake the remainder, if it is a long stretch, drop the first one and keep the second one until it too gets tight. Either way you will then have your working length with you when you arrive at the drop point. Then you flake it and call for water.
You are right, you have to train and add a little water!!
David-In Salt Lake City we currently use the flat load for our cross lays and I do not like them. With a lot of our residential structures set back the lengths are currently between 200'- 250'. Imagine if you will 100'+ of hose in a mess in the front yard. Luckily, we train and have patience and guys are learning to flake the hose out to make for easier advances. We are currently experimenting with the Corona Roll pre connected to our 2.50" alley lays. Personally I prefer the triple fold. I think it is the same as the Minute Man discussed above. It deploys easy and fast. It also loads where it lays with no mess.
Good discussion.
Thanks everyone for your reply!! I have not had any progress yet with getting the chief to change his mind. I am hoping to in the near future build a wood mock of our crosslay bed that will allow members to come and practice deploying the hose load and not take the truck out of service. What is also nice is our department owns a scissor lift so my thought was to use this lift to pick the mock cross lay up to a height that is about the same as the truck and also build a set like the truck has. This will allow for a more realistic training then trying to pull it off a table which is much lower. Once completed I will work with the guys and the chief to do a training exercise and time how long it takes to deploy several different loads and how easy it is to repack etc. Then take this back to the chief for a decision. And with the training prop I can practice with all members before we officially put it in service.
We currently use the minute man load. I prefer the triple load but our chief said it was to confusing to load. I have found a new way to deploy the minute man where it kinda comes out like the triple lay. The problem we had was that when you got to the front door we still had a 100 ft. on our shoulders. What we have started doing is pulling the first section of the minute man off the truck and laying it on the ground. Then we grab the coupling at the 100 ft mark and carry the nozzel in one hand and the coupling in the other. You are pulling both sections at the same time so you only have to go 100 ft. instead of 200 ft. It is also laid out straight ready for fire attack. There is a good video on pulling the flat load on Fire Engineering training minutes. It is a good video and keeps the hose from becoming a mess at the truck.
Bros
I do want to point out that all these loads are great,....for getting to the front door. We all aggree that our goal is a nozzle and a coupling at our knees when the line is charged and we are masking up. I believe the minute man load leaves TOO much hose, and the others are left dragging behind and catching corners....when we are trying to go up stairs. We have a great mix in our area, but we also have many 2, to 6 story frame dwellings that have a lot of stairs. None of these loads work for us, as now, with the minuteman, although you do bring a boatload of hose with you, now you have to find a home for it on the upper floors. The others, well, they just don't make it. We went back to a flat load, the first length is carried by the nozzle FF, and he is responsible for that. I as the officer carry the second 100, and the ECC clears the bed. We also have static attack hose off the rear, and most of the progressive officers who really know how to estimate the stretch, use that exclusively. One thing I want to point out. Our main goal is getting that first hoseline into service. We don't have truck or rescue companies that have the manpower to find the fire, or pull extensive searches. So our biggest life saving tool is the initial attack hoseline. We will put two companies on that line, and the last 2 companies on the backup to ensure it's success. 27 years,and it has not failed me yet. Be safe
Ian, that is what we run. I rarely touch the pre connects. We use 2 1/2" on all commercials, regardless of the size. It could be a hot dog stand. For guys who don't practice this, you should. We have been doing it long before Charleston.

Ian Ramirez said:
Russ you hit the nail on the head brother. Getting a charged hoseline to the seat of the fire is the single most important thing you can do. I know you guys have read the old sayings "As the first line goes, so goes the operation." "Put the fire out and 95% of your problems go away." What might work for you guys are two load off the rear using approx. 500' 2 1/2" reduced to 300' 13/4" w/ a 15/16" s/b tip. I don't know what else you have off the rear but then a third load of 600' 21/2" w/ a 1 1/8" s/b tip makes a nice back up line or large diameter attack line when if you run into an A.D.U.L.T.S. situation.
We've been using the preconnect load described by David. Ours are preconnected crosslays over the pump panel. Last year one of the guys who went to FDIC brought back the triple-layer and it's been a slow transition since. I really like the triple-layer for our district. It's mostly residential with a 30'-50' set-back and when you stretch the hose it's almost all out by the time you get to the door. And the bonus is much fewer kinks than with our current set-up. We do have some rural settings yet in our department. But in most of those situations we'll have to take the crosslays out and use 3" or larger to make up the distance.

I hope this is helpful to you. Have fun.
Bro...like I said before..we used it. It is great to get to the front door. If you don't have to go vertical, it is fantastic, but you still are dragging excess charged hoseline behind you. We should be all striving to have the first coupling and the nozzle at our knees when we put on our masks. The triple fold, there is 75 feet of hose behind you. If you have to go verticl, (upper floors) then you have to re-bundle 50 feet for the carry length.

Doug Ott said:
We've been using the preconnect load described by David. Ours are preconnected crosslays over the pump panel. Last year one of the guys who went to FDIC brought back the triple-layer and it's been a slow transition since. I really like the triple-layer for our district. It's mostly residential with a 30'-50' set-back and when you stretch the hose it's almost all out by the time you get to the door. And the bonus is much fewer kinks than with our current set-up. We do have some rural settings yet in our department. But in most of those situations we'll have to take the crosslays out and use 3" or larger to make up the distance.

I hope this is helpful to you. Have fun.
My original reply to you was like this:

Russ, I'm not saying our set up is perfect. But what we're trying is much better than what we have been using. If static hose beds were the norm here, life would be much easier.

But after thinking a few moments, I see what you're saying. I tend to be a little slow lately. Especially while trying to give up soda.

Russ Chapman said:
Bro...like I said before..we used it. It is great to get to the front door. If you don't have to go vertical, it is fantastic, but you still are dragging excess charged hoseline behind you. We should be all striving to have the first coupling and the nozzle at our knees when we put on our masks. The triple fold, there is 75 feet of hose behind you. If you have to go verticl, (upper floors) then you have to re-bundle 50 feet for the carry length.
We use a modified minuteman but our presonnects run out of the back of the engine not cross lays. You can pull your engine past the house, leaving room for the truck, and pull the line right out of the bed. We use 200' 1 3/4" the first 100' is laid flush with the end of the bed the full length of the hose bed and the end is layed over the front of the bed to be connected later to the top 100'. To load the top 100' you place the male end about at the tail board and load the top 100' about 12' back in the hose bed and leave a pull hanging out of the bed for the whole top 100'. Then you connect the end of the top 100' to the bottom 100'. Then you connect the nozzle to the male end and place that part of the section on top of the whole hose load. When you pull the top 100' the nozzle should be around your shoulder with the 100' being over your shoulder. The FF can pull the top 100' on his shoulder and the driver pulls out the last 100'. It is a good hose load and works well for us. you have control of 100' of hose and you can walk over obstructions etc. while you flake out your hose.

I am not really sure about how I feel about the minute man load on a crosslay. We use pre connected minute man load's on our cross lays and they have a few disadvantages. 1. they only pull to one side. 2. if your like my dept you will most likley have a smooth bore on one crosslay and a fog on the other so depending on what side your engine is facing will determine if your going to use a fog or a smooth bore nozzle not the firefighter or the officer actually making the desicion. if you have a lot of new guys in and out of your department sometimes it's just easier to go with the good old basic flat load. everyone knows how to pack it, and you can't screw up when your pulling it.

Dave, we also use a Mattydale load. We have 2 200' and 2 300' Mattydales. On the 200' crosslays, they get laid in with no loops until you start the 3rd 50' length, and here there are 2 loops, one to each side. the lay continues until you reach the last 50' length where there are 2 loops one to each side and the remainder of the last 50' gets laid stacked atop itself, then the pipe is put on and a rubber band ( a strip of inner tube ) is stretched around the pipe and the last 50' of hose. This rubber band is pulled end loop through end loop and a wooden wedge is placed in the loop thus formed, making an easily carried bundle out of the pipe and first 50'. The wedge is usually joined to the rubber band with a string to keep them together after deploying  or "breaking" the bundle. In practice, when you grab the top loop, you are pulling 50' on your shoulder and 50' is snaking off the top. The second FF grabs the second loop and that pulls the remaining 100' off. In reality, the first FF grabs the top loop, pulling the bundle off and onto his shoulder and grabs the second loop, pulling the rest off as he leaves the rig. I now paint the wooden wedges with bright orange spray paint because they were so hard to find amongst the fire debris at night and I was sick of losing them. The 300' crosslays are handled similarly except that the secondary loop is at the 150' mark (halfway) When you get to the point where you want to break the bundle, you pull the wedge out and the rubber band comes free. You now have the added advantage of having a door chock in your hand for the entry door.We make the two loops distinctly different sizes, about 24" for the one with the bundle and about 12-14" for the midway loop. When I get back to work I'll snap some pics so you can see what I'm talking about.

   This works pretty good for us. We used to have the single loop at the bottom which only promoted the excited FF to skid the bed, leaving a huge pile of spaghetti next to the pump panel and an irate driver left to straighten the mess out. TJP

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