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June 2016 Blog Posts (20)

MFA #31: The ABCs of AIA* - Modern techniques for interior firefighting

*Aggressive Interior Attack

At every structure fire that is not declared a defensive situation, and after we get past the currently controversial intervention choices (vent, flow water, both, or neither), firefighters of all tactical persuasions will then need to enter the building in order to complete the tasks that remain (search, extinguishment, ventilation, overhaul, salvage).  It is at that point that the traditional and modern fire attack (MFA) methods converge,…


Added by Mark J. Cotter on June 30, 2016 at 6:49am — No Comments

NFPA 1582 - not a return to work standard

In my passion for law and medicine as a practitioner of both professions, I often see individuals injured on the job arriving in my medical clinic for a return to work evaluation, most notably firefighters. Many times they are accompanied with the instructions from the department to use NFPA 1582 as the medical standard for the injured firefighters return to work. I will tell you in my humble opinion, this is not the standard to use for the reasons to follow.

NFPA 1582 is an entry…


Added by John K. Murphy on June 27, 2016 at 10:30am — No Comments

First Due Deck Gun

The deck gun might be a regional term, I have also heard it called the monitor, or the “Stang”, but we are talking about the engine mounted master stream. Most engine mounted master streams, fog, or a stack of smooth bore tips have a flow range of 500 to 1000 GPM.

Before we go big guns blazing we can review our first due fire attack options. The 1 ¾” flowing 2.5…


Added by Brian Brush on June 26, 2016 at 4:30pm — 1 Comment

What is Aggessive?

First, let me say that this post has nothing to do with the debate about interior versus exterior, so if you're trolling for something like that, just move along. No, this is one post in a string of future posts that will address some situations I've recently seen regarding aggressiveness and the lack of on the fire ground and in our daily activities at the firehouse.

Aggressiveness was first introduced to me at an early age when I began playing basketball. Our high system was built… Continue

Added by Jason Hoevelmann on June 24, 2016 at 12:30pm — No Comments

Managing the MCI

As incident commanders (IC) we are tasked to run a gambit of incidents. There are some incidents that can cause anxiety, of those 1 in particular can overwhelm IC’s quickly, the mass casualty incident (MCI). These incidents grow quickly and in order to manage it an IC needs quickly wrap his/her hands around it and dole out tasks. Below is a quick action guideline to assist you in with these incidents:


  • Quickly scan the incident for hazards to fire and rescue personnel…

Added by David Polikoff on June 24, 2016 at 7:36am — No Comments


Training is not just for the bread and butter tasks, but to sharpen skills that we rarely use, too. This cartoon focuses on one of those tasks: standpipe training, tactics and operation. Are standpipes a resource that we use often? Most of us would probably say no. Is utilizing standpipe connections a real and present possibility? I think most would say…


Added by Paul Combs on June 22, 2016 at 8:14am — No Comments

This is why we search: Part Deux

I don't know what kind of strange energy I upset with the fire gods, but take a look at these photos. …


Added by Barrett Dorner on June 18, 2016 at 12:00pm — No Comments

It's Just A Seat!

It’s just a seat!

The front right seat, company officer, lieu, cap, acting Officer, or whatever name you have for this seat it is not to be taken lightly. An officers position is to influence your people to be better, better at their craft, and better as a person. As an officer the right seat holds a tremendous amount of responsibility.

All too often when promotion time comes around you will see a majority of people running to…


Added by Oj Kolodziej on June 17, 2016 at 5:07pm — No Comments

New UL research: Form your own informed opinions

New analysis coming in the beginning of 2017 from UL Firefighter Safety Research Institute.

That gives us plenty of time to take a deep breath and plan to handle this information appropriately.

Simply, we all need to begin by reading the entire report. The actual report. Not some random Facebook page's analysis of the analysis. Start with the raw material to get a full…


Added by Barrett Dorner on June 17, 2016 at 12:00pm — No Comments

Hump Day SOS: T-Shirt Management

T-Shirt Management

by David Rhodes 

This Hump Day SOS is dedicated to my good friend MG, you know who you are. Enjoy!

I am always amazed at how many critically important issues there are to manage in the fire department. With any high-risk occupation, the day is…


Added by David Rhodes on June 15, 2016 at 7:10am — No Comments

MFA #30: Tactical Disorder - The root of our disagreement

In the ongoing debate over structural firefighting tactics in the era of fire dynamics enlightenment, the topic inspiring particularly passionate sentiment does not so much regard tactics themselves, but the sequence in which they are performed.  Regardless if your belief is that almost all firefighting should be performed indoors and that the only valuable exterior action is ventilation, or if you have embraced all or some of the fire behavior research findings that…


Added by Mark J. Cotter on June 15, 2016 at 6:41am — No Comments

THE BLAME - June Fire Engineering Magazine Editorial Cartoon



Click here to see more of my work or to order prints:…


Added by Paul Combs on June 13, 2016 at 7:27am — No Comments

This is why we search

On the right, a "Code Red" structure -- we only enter if we *see* a savable life -- on fire twice yesterday. Missing 10' of foundation, numerous holes in the floor, and missing structural members.*

On the left, a house with roof crumbling around a truck company's vent h***, garbage bags over the windows, and an old man who came out to see if the neighboring…


Added by Barrett Dorner on June 10, 2016 at 12:00pm — No Comments

The Ground Ladder "Click System"

It seems that most of the time when ground ladder training is mentioned a lot of firefighters are hesitant to get excited. The ground ladder is probably the most simple of all the tools we use as firefighters. We don’t have to mix their fuel, choke them, charge their batteries, or anything of that nature because they don’t require any of those items. Although they’re one of the simplest pieces of equipment we use; that doesn’t take away from their importance. There is always a time and place…


Added by Chad Menard on June 10, 2016 at 7:30am — No Comments

Quick Communications Drill 1: Practicing fire ground transmissions while breathing air.

Attempting to transmit through your face piece is what some might call an art, but it’s actually a science. And like other sciences, it requires experimentation. Your variables are voice quality, voice strength, mic placement, and noise cancelling and isolation.

How can you ensure your message is getting through? First, you must ensure you're speaking clearly- call it voice quality. You have to fight the nose cone and chin cup that are doing their job in keeping a…


Added by Samuel Villani, III on June 6, 2016 at 6:00am — No Comments

The Main Street MAYDAY...

Thinking your three or four member rapid intervention team will suffice when combating a fire in an ordinary construction group of attached structures can be compared to “fool’s gold".…


Added by Joseph Pronesti on June 5, 2016 at 6:50pm — No Comments

Your SCBA and YOU!

The Sunday Preach CHAPTER 5:

It's Really The Only Time You Have.

"Much of how quickly you deplete your air supply is predicated on your level of comfort in wearing the SCBA ensemble, your physical fitness level, and your mental status." (Pg 39)

In the not so distant past, SCBA cylinders had "work" and "exit" times that were universally accepted for the various cylinder types. Those static numbers are a thing of the past.

While there are certainly unofficial 'rules…


Added by Douglas Mitchell, Jr. on June 5, 2016 at 3:05pm — No Comments

Unlocking Organizational Potential through Servant Leadership

As a servant leader you should constantly be focused on making the organization better. There is no better way than to tap into the organization's most valued resource, the people within. By investing in these people, they will give the organization a substantial return. The read more visit…


Added by Douglas K. Cline on June 5, 2016 at 10:31am — No Comments

Pride, Ownership and the New Generation "All is Not Lost"

I’ll start off as always with my shout-outs for this blog. This one goes to 1st Lieutenant Sarah Read, of the Chili Fire Department Explorer program. You will see why as you read through the blog.  

In the past couple years, two reoccurring themes have been proposed in the various classes we have taught throughout the states. First is the demise of the fire service because of “The New Kids” and second is their lack of understanding of pride, tradition and honor.…


Added by Lawrence Schultz on June 3, 2016 at 2:08pm — No Comments

NIMS and Command

There are many things that can impact poorly on an emergency incident: poor communication, disregard of SOP’s, poor tactical decisions and lack of command, just to name a few. I will focus on command. A strong command presence can overcome most issues on an emergency incident. Most think that command starts once a chief officer arrives on the scene; this ideology can prove to be detrimental to a successful outcome on an incident. The fact is, during an emergency, the incident…


Added by David Polikoff on June 3, 2016 at 6:33am — No Comments

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