Frank...I am a member on one of the Districts a bit south of you....We run a 100' arial....On a box alarm, IF our rescue is in the station, we are "fortunate" to have 2 guys. If the rescue is out, as it often is, the driver responds "solo"....makes for an interesting first few minutes on the fireground!
In my dept. we have 12 truck cos. each manned with an officer, a driver, and 2 firefighters. Our SOPs have 2 truck cos. and 1 RIT truck on every fire. The 1st and 2nd due truck s take positions of laddering that allow 2 means of escape from a roof. The RIT truck is proactive in throwing ladders to windows, making alternate means of egress etc. We do not leave anyoneon the turntable. The driver and 1 FF ascend to the roof to do ventilation while the officer and the 2nd FF go in to do search and rescue. In the event that the aerial needs to be moved one of the drivers of an Engine can do what is necessary. I have spent 15 of 17 yrs. in the Fire Service on a truck company. The one time I was stranded on a roof with 2 other truckers we had arcing power lines and an engine guy had to move the aerial because we could not reach the other means of egress. It may not be the greatest situation nor the safest, but it is, what it is
We run with 3 The drive stays on the turn table and the Captain and firefighter go to the roof
It works but there are time when having that free set of eye will keep your butt out of the fire
sometime a firefighters from another engine company will help on the roof if they are available and the IC sees the need
(like a commercail building)
That sounds alot like us. We have hung many banners across roads for the township. We do not run are platform on resid. fires because we would have to take 2 off of are mostly one man engine or shut down a 3 man ALS unit.
We operate out of a 102' platform at our fire department. Our minimum staffing for the truck is 4, however the FD has a policy that if one person is going to be gone for less than 6 hours then they will not call out to fill the spot. Anything more than 6 hours gets filled with overtime. The operator does not always have to man the turntable. We split our crew 2 and 2. The officer and the backstepper on his side will go to the structure for interior truck ops. The operator and the back stepper on his side will throw ground ladders and go to the roof, then go inside for secondary search and overhaul. The only time that we require the operator to man the turntable is when we are operating at a defensive fire, and were flowwing water out the pipes.
In my Dept we ride with 4 members on a ladder, we don't specifically require a member stay on the turntable. On my tour I require a member to stay with the apparatus, and to be able to put it to work if a member or civilian should appear in a window, an aerial device in front of a building with no one to operate it is a mistake and waste of resources. I also feel that the 1st due ladder may be used by the 2nd or 3rd ladder in for roof or exterior operations etc. and the operator is with the piece ready to put it to work. Some suggestions to the thought that if the ladder is not used than your wasting the manpower on the turntable, we have the RIT (4th Engine) crew ladder the building, the aerial or buckets can be set up to the fire floor and floor above much faster and provide a means of egress early in a fire in addition to ground ladders. If the ladders are positioned properly that should cover 2 sides of the building. You should always be able to find use for an aerial or bucket at a fire. Anything you can do will make for a safer fireground
I come from a very small department (30 men), usually 10 guys on shift when everyone is on duty. We run two Engine companies (2 guys on E1, 3 guys on E3), one Rescue company (2 men), and one 75' truck company (3 men). Our truck company is lucky to have 3 guys on a good day. More commonly we have two fire fighters on the ladder, Driver and Officer. The officer on L3 is the shift captain. Our Ladder is a recent addition to the department (1 year) and we do not have clear SOGs on operating with the truck.
Hi Frank. We are running 4 firefighters on every truck co and usually the driver/operator will stay on the turn table. However there are times when the extra hand is needed and the driver has to go to work. The big excuse for leaving him there is so no one will move the ladder. This is a ludicrous argument. It is a cardinal sin to move a ladder when the operator isn't around. It is a clear indication that the ladder operator is at the top of the ladder.
In our department we typically run with 1 officer and two firefighters on our 4 ladder companies. Occasionally we have a fourth guy assigned to 1 or 2 of the ladders. Some people in my department (mostly chiefs!) refer to the fourth firefighter as "extra"!?! In the past, the officer and the person behind him or her went inside and the driver would go to the roof and hook up with the driver of the second due ladder while the rest of the second due crew went to the floor above. Now, in the interest of crew integrity, our S.O.G.s say you are either in or out together. This forces the first officer to make the decision on venting vs search and assign companies in priority order. This opens a whole other topic. I agree whole heartedly with crew integrity, because we used to have fireground operations with people running around trying to find their free-lancing officers. However, I also think if you split a four person crew into 2 teams of 2 as long as 1 of the teams is outside of the I.D.L.H. environment you can get more bang for the buck in the "bread and butter" fire.
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