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From Gary Graf of Engine House Training, LLC


When encountered with a restricted opening the first instinct is to attempt one of two methods; try to make it through the opening by bruit force, or to remove our SCBA.
By coming through the opening SCBA bottle first even a larger firefighter can make it through a standard 16” stud wall opening.

While sitting on the ground facing away from the opening, place the SCBA bottle into the stud space.  Now, one at a time; use an over-the-head swimming motion to pass your shoulders through the opening.  As you pull the rest of your body through the opening rotate to your side so your pockets will pass without getting hung.

Now, go train and give it a try!


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-Wow, very interesting. Yet another new approach to an old problem. I like it and look forward to giving it a try.

Jason, great post! I learned this skill from the FE FFI & FFII handbook. I had a acquired structure and had my guys breach the wall as they have been taught in the past. By removal of their SCBA. I then introduced this skill and had great sucess. thanks for posting but for those who have not read the Fire Engineering FFI & FFII Handbook I would highly suggest it as it has MANY skills like this we can all learn from.




Thanks, I do have the handbooks and they are awesome!  

Take care,


Excellent idea.  Given that fact that I don't miss many meals, I have issues with studs on 16 inch centers.  I've always had to loosen my shoulder straps and slide through torso first and pack second.  I'll be sure to give this a try.

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