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What are some of the tools, you prefer to take off the rig initially? Obviously based on occupancy and urgency! It would seem that there are tools applicable to every occupancy. What are some of the specialty tools that have either been made for specific occupancies in your area or bought? Please show pics if available. There are many articles, on "Forcible entry" that show using specialty tools for panic hardware on commercial double doors..i.e.- paint rollers or wire hangers, and "J" bars...who carries this stuff initially off the rig? Have we gotten away from the basics? Can a set of Irons, "A" or "K" tool (with key tools), hook and saw, handle every situation? Give me your thoughts! Many small town departments don't have tools designated to specific ride assignments, due to minimal manning. What are the priority tools? More with less!!

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In my department, there are no permanent ride assignments. When you come in for each tour, you are assigned to an apparatus. It could be the truck, engine, rescue, or ambulance. Because of minimal manning, we carry SCOTT packs on our ambulances and a set of irons with a K Tool kit. Often times when FE is needed for a medical or lockout type situation, the engine is called! WTF???? I have taken to carrying a small bag of tools with me no matter what apparatus I am assigned to (something I took from Tony Tricarico, FDNY) it has a small cache of tools that I might need in any situation. It comes off the rig with me and if I don't need it, it is dropped at the front door, and I use my hand tools. Usually a 6' steel hook and a halligan! That bag has a K-tool kit with key tools, modified slip lock pliers, linesman cutters, screwdrivers, Z-wires, shove knife, Bam bam tool and door chocks, Vise grips, and a stilson wrench (Pipe wrench) along with some (different sized) pulled padlock cylinders as modified key tools. Believe it or not the bag is not heavy....
Chuck, as an officer I carry a pry axe with me on most fire calls initially. I do carry my fair share of handy tools in my coat and bunkers. Depending on the alarm type and whether the run is in town or an assist call, tools change, to a degree by incident. The pry axe is right by my feet in the cab and quite handy. I can do a number of different thing with that little tool, thanks to the brothers that came before me and passed the knowledge along.

Stay Safe!
Our officer takes the TIC as well, but I'm curious what tools you take for FE, initially! Some departments take the Hydra Ram, etc... ! I really am a big fan of the rex tool. But a set of Irons is more often 1st due.
Dave LeBlanc said:
We also do not have set riding assignments and tools.

If my engine is first due, the jumpseat grabs the can and the irons. I will grab a 6' rake and the TIC. If we are stretching the can gets left behind.

If we are going in second due, we will grabs rakes unless given a different task. The TIC always comes in with me.
Generally I revert back to the old reliable irons for most of my forcible entry needs. The panic doors have a number of different ways to gain access to them but the fastest I’ve messed with is a K saw and a framing square. The blade on a normal k saw is normally thick enough that if you make one single cut in the middle of your door just above the panic bar then you can slide your framing square through your cut and drop it over the panic bar and pull. Quick and easy but destructive also so regulate when and where to use it.

Not a problem at all Dave! Incidently I have been meaning to ask you a question about a Tool that I had seen on a TV series Documentary about the Boston FD! It featured Lt. Kevin Kelly (R.I.P.) of Ladder 26, and he gets off the rig with a large tool that looks like a hammerheaded pick, but with a flat adz type blade. On numerous alarms this is the tool he carries. I was Just curious if that was a common officers tool, like the rake is for the firefighters in Mass. ? The show was Firehouse USA in 2005. You can probably watch it either on HULU, but definitely on youtube. Anyway! I'll either talk to you on here or FB!


Dave LeBlanc said:

Sorry it wasn't more clear. We bring the irons for FE. We have a hydraram on on HQ engine, but it is rarely used, My jumpseat firefighter brings the can and the irons. Gives us the best combination for most calls.
Here's the Link for Firehouse USA from youtube! The opening sequence actually shows the LT. holding the tool up for the camera quickly!
It is called an adz.
LOL....well that would certainly make sense. It is much longer than a woodworkers adz! Or is it modified specifically to be a fire service FE tool? How effective is it? Seems it would have good leverage! Do you guys utilize them in Canada?

Thanks Andrew!

Andrew Brassard said:
It is called an adz.
I am not very familiar with the tool, I just know that that is what it is called in Boston. I am sure it is quite effective in the hands of a well trained fireman. I will stick with my axe and halligan though!!
-Typically positions and assignments are spelled out at the beginning of the tour. The Trucks are tasked with forcible entry however, all engines do carry a set of Irons as well as an A Tool (referred to here as a Rex Tool)
-To perform forcible entry work Truck firemen will typically take the Irons as well as the A Tool with them.
-Personally, in addition to the Irons, I will also take a Roof Hook (Adz Hook) with me just because of its incredible versatility.
We don't have tool assignment but tools are chosen on arrival of your due. We have set truck assignment and no buses. If we arrived anything past second due (pumper) its hooks or RIT tools. My old trusty go to tools are a set of Irons that have been passed on for many years and I hope to pass them on to my son. A original Hugh Halligan and a bare metal hickory flat. I can do just about any task with these 2 tools and take alot of pride in them.

As a Truck Officer, I grab a TIC, box light, haligan, and roof hook.


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