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I work for a small suburban fire dept. and we don't always have enough men at both stations (due to run volume) to start internal fire attack due to 2 in 2 out rules. My question is this, what about the old fashioned way of finding the room of origin breaking a window, putting the hose in on a tight stream and rotating to knock down the fire or control it until help arrives? I have heard conflicting arguments about pushing the fire. Will a tight stream push the fire?

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Why a tight stream? As long as you can be sure that there are no victims present or other ff's in the blg you might want to use steam to your advantage in knocking it down.
As for 2 in/out requirements....I believe OSHA mentions that 2 can go in as long as another 2 will be arriving in the immediate future. .....but your dept SOP's will trump that.
Look for a copy of the Basic Structural Tactical Inititive. Came out of west Texas after a couple of LODD. I found it on FETN and I don't know if there is a copywright (if someone can tell me if there isn't one I'll copy it for you), but it deals with first alarms and you know there will be a delay between arriving Engines and managment staff.

The BSTI suggests the first arriving Engine drop a supply line (if 3 man crew, charge it, if 2 leave it dry) DO set the pump, pulls the line and flakes to the collapse zone and then forwards tools. Officer takes IC, does walk around, decides if rescue is needed and/or if quick knockdown is possible. Crew forms up and goes in if either is true.

If neither is true, wait for the next Engine or (if you have a 4 man crew) count your DO and outside FF as your 2 out; IF you have an assured water suppy, your pump (that you trust with your life) will provide the pressure/volume you need and both are in full PPE, packed up, tools forward and ready to go

I really like it for small combonation departments and vollies that run automatice mutual aid. It's a real world way for short staffed departments to assign tasks to whoever the next piece due is: 1st is attack, 2nd makes the water suppy and is back up/vent/ladders, 3rd is safety, 1st Officer is IC, 2nd Officer is Safety. Oh right, nice to have a medic in case someone gets hurt or you have a patient.
Dave LeBlanc said:
I think that I have some concern with the notion that 2 in and 2 out is our saving grace. The standard was not originally designed for the Fire Service, and in my mind leaves us in a position of doing more work with less firefighters. At the same time it provides us with a false sense of security, as we are being lead to believe that 2 firefighters outside are enough to rescue 2 firefighters inside.

Now before you tar and feather me......I am not saying we should throw the baby out with the bath water. However I am not sure that 2 in and 2 out provides us with what we need when it comes to deciding when and how to attack a fire in a building.

Look into Phoenix's studies after the death of Brett Tarver. Look at how many firefighters it took to locate a mising firefighter, let alone perform the rescue.

Do you think it is possible that 4 people on the hoseline, stretching and venting may produce a quicker, safer, better result?
No tar, No feathers! I agree with you Dave, rapid intervention is not rapid. If a rescue exists, the 2in 2 out goes out the window, provided fire isn't coming out every crack in the house. Definately count the DO outside as a outside firefighter. If you know it's one room off, put the thing out, problems go away. All of our discussions go back to training and experience of our members.

Well said Jeff !!!!!

Jeff Schwering said:
No tar, No feathers! I agree with you Dave, rapid intervention is not rapid. If a rescue exists, the 2in 2 out goes out the window, provided fire isn't coming out every crack in the house. Definately count the DO outside as a outside firefighter. If you know it's one room off, put the thing out, problems go away. All of our discussions go back to training and experience of our members.

Dave, again I'm in total agreement with you. One room job get in and put the thing out. I was also raised on the same principle, but, if the fire is blowing out of every crack in some of our newer contructed homes, It will be checked, after we call 2or 3 alarms to get enough folks there to do the job right, hence your not suicidal statement Bro. We need to teach our officer and firefighters, while I know it's cutting into nap time, to me saving their lives and the public's lives takes priority for me as a Boss.

We believe in rapid attack and rapid ventillation. Get the water on the fire and open it up, this will do more for your efforts than anything else, but then again im not talking to a group of probies; you all know this. My father says they used to use the nozzle in the window back in the day when they were short on companies, he is now the chief and we use that tactic since we are still short on companies. One thing I see and dont understand is commanders assigning a RIT team and still having outside crews "on deck" if you will. Cant be used the same way? waste of resources? any different opinions?
2 in/2 out may not be our saving grace, but it is the law of the land and a "best practice" in the fire service. If you put everyone into or onto the structure 1000 times, you might get away with it. If you don't, someones wife or folks, who know the game and understand how it's played, are going to want answers. Telling them that "firefighters die" won't be it. Not anymore than a Scout leader telling me that 'kids die" is going to save them.

If you KNOW right where the fire is and there is no structural compromise, go for it. 2 in/2 out comes from the same place as Risk Managment. It's not there to replace good situational awarness common sense.
I am a firm believer in doing just what you described. I wouldn't use it if I thought folks were inside, but if that were the case we'd be going in anyway. In the situation you mentioned, not enough people, and no one inside, I'd wring the window out on a straight stream. I don't think it pushes fire at all, and very little steam, at least not near as much as a fog.

It is definitely another argument, and one we already lost legally, but like most here, I don't see the safety in letting a one room fire get bigger while waiting for another crew. But wringing out the window is one alternative
-Firstly, I must say that to attack a fire through a window as mentioned is not acceptable nor professional firefighting. Not because of the old adage about pushing the fire throughout the structure, but rather because firefighters will not have information about interior conditions, the status and/or location of any possible victims. Remember the victim.... always!!! The introduction of air and water will change interior conditions irrevocably for the victim.
-The old Lloyd Layman, through the window, indirect attack was never intended for structural firefighting but was initiated by the Navy for shipboard firefighting. In a structural application the status of victims is never known until firefighters have entered, performed a search and verified for themselves. Not information from bystanders, other occupants or the dispatcher.
-The part of the book, Little Drops of Water, that no one seems to read or they conveniently forget is Chief Layman specifically warning against the indirect attack, especially and specifically through the window, if there is even a remote possibility of victims inside or the potential of firefighters immediately entering the occupancy.
--As to the Two In/Two Out Rule; like it or hate it, it is an established, accepted standard of service delivery that is currently in practice.
-The illustration of the Phoenix fire with Brother Tarver is often sited by proponents and detractors of the Two In/Two Out Rule. Using this incident to imply that the OSHA ruling is impractical and/or insufficient for firefighting purposes is a rather prejudiced and colored argument.
-The often overlooked yet vital factor in that specific incident is that the scene took place in a 10,000+ square foot grocery store not an 800 square foot apartment or a 1400 square foot private residential dwelling. And this is crucial, especially when one considers that in a 1400 square foot residential dwelling,interior operating firefighters will never be more than 12 feet from an exterior wall. The disparity in dynamics between a residential occupancy and a massive commercial grocery are extraordinary.
-Would it be easy for two firefighters to rescue another firefighter? Not at all. But, in a residential occupancy of 800 to 1600 square feet, it is somewhat more manageable than in a massive grocery store. Perspective is everything.
-I really cannot buy into the thinking that the Two In/Two Out Rule creates any sense of security; false, implied or otherwise. Speaking for myself, I have never drawn any comfort or disquiet from the RIC being in place. Following Chief Norman's line of teaching, I have always viewed my personal safety as my responsibility. "Never place yourself in a position in which you are dependent on someone else getting you out." That being said, I know that sometimes s@#t happens and it must be addressed. That is what RIC are for.
-The Two In/Two Out Rule was created for the express purpose of "attempting to improve" the safe working conditions of firefighters on the fireground, not to be the end all, save all grace to the fire service.
-In regards to implementation, Dave is somewhat misinformed. The ruling does not say that firefighters may begin interior operations if the RIC is going to arrive on scene soon, immediately or even imminently. The RIC (the Two Out) must be on scene and ready to go for interior operations to begin.
-The other, often misunderstood and misquoted portion of the Rule is when the Two In/Two Out Rule can be disregarded.
-The Rule is clear on this point as well. The Two In/Two Out Rule MAY be disregarded IF firefighters believe that there are victim(s) inside the fire occupancy that will die without the immediate intervention of firefighters. PERIOD.
-Personnel that intend to disregard the Rule should also be made painfully aware that there are consequences if they choose to disregard the Rule and firefighters are injured or killed as a result of the RIC not being established.
-Like it or not, this is the world we live in. Current events tell us every day that firefighters are being held to account not only for their actions on the fireground but also what they teach other firefighters.
-Now, if you have taken the time to read this far... I'm not saying I love or hate the Rule. And I'm not going to say that I or my department rigidly adhere to the Rule; I have seen members enforce and disregard the Rule. I have adhered to and disregarded the Rule. It is situational dependent.
-Knock the fire down and things will get better. Generally speaking this idea usually works. However, be careful not to place the survivability of the structure ahead of the survivability of the occupants. Trapped victims do not have bunker gear or scba's. Nor do they have much time left to afford firefighters the luxury of forcible entry, stretching in, locating, confining and extinguishing the fire. While the fire is attacked the game clock is still running and the victim continues to be exposed to the super heated air, smoke and the toxic atmosphere that have already been created and will continue to threaten the victim while the fire is attacked.
-Before firefighter do anything to change or intensify the environment (opening windows or doors, spraying water fog streams into an area) we must know the status of the primary search. Are there victims inside? Are you sure? Why are you sure?
-An old Wyatt Earp proverb is to, "Take your time in a hurry". Slow is fast and fast is slow. Take time to perform properly. If a department needs more manpower to perform safely and efficiently than that is a fight that must be fought with zealous abandon before the alarms come in. To bad the fire service doesn't fight the manpower fight like we attack fires.
-Sometimes the victim will be the priority and will come first. Other times the fire will have to be addressed first. Spraying water through a window as a method of attacking a structural or room and contents fire is not professional or safe structural firefighting.
Brother Michael,
You are the man of great wording. We all have disregarded some rules here and there, but it all comes back to risk vs benefit. I stand by my earlier post, most all of our discussions in the fire service today, regardless of subject, stem back to training our members, Pvt. or Capt, mentally and physically for the battle we must be ready to fight everyday.

I dont think that it is unprofessional to to attack through a window! We to not use this as an indirect attack, in our dept this is more of an aggressive exterior attack. Our rule is water only goes on fire...period, no steam or fog spray used. By using this tactic we are able to get the fire to an "incipiant" stage, in doing so we are allowed to make entry per 2 in 2 out laws.

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