Fire Engineering Training Community

Where firefighters come to talk training

Featured Blog Posts (376)

Into Combat

I was eating supper at work yesterday, reading a book at the same time, and as it does so often a random thought popped into my mind. In order to provide some context for what follows, this thought was inspired by several sources. First was the book "About Face" by Col. David Hackworth. If you haven't read it, do it soon. It is inspiring and thought provoking. My mindset is still reeling from that book. Number two was a blog from titled "Know What Your Doing: It's…


Added by Dave Werner on January 3, 2014 at 3:32pm — 2 Comments

Hump Day SOS - New Year's Resolutions

You have to make a few resolutions when the new year comes around. You can't go wrong with directing efforts towards mastering the basics of stretching hose…


Added by David Rhodes on January 1, 2014 at 9:09am — No Comments

Presenting to Children

Some people dread the thought of speaking to large groups of small children.  Their wiggling bodies and wandering minds are hard to reign in.  Most successful teachers have come to grips with the fact that their job consists of ‘knowledge imparter’ and ‘entertainer’ in equal parts.  Given that fact, there are many factors to consider as you prepare your presentation.…


Added by Becki White on December 27, 2013 at 3:00pm — 2 Comments

Hump Day SOS - The Suspicious Package - Lack of Trust

In most departments this would be considered a suspicious package. The lack of trust between the headquarters staff and line members is one thing that will prevent progress and bog down the grandest of plans. The reception of these packages are not usually in the form of gifts however, any delivery from the chain of command will be accepted or rejected based on the previous…


Added by David Rhodes on December 26, 2013 at 8:28am — No Comments


Yes, yes, I know... this is just wrong. But I couldn't help my twisted self:)

Have a safe and blessed Christmas, everybody.

Added by Paul Combs on December 23, 2013 at 7:01am — 3 Comments


I receive a lot of emails over the course of a week. Among the onslaught of solicitations and wealthy foreigners who want to share their wealth if I'll just give them my bank account info are legitimate questions about art. The question I receive most often is "how do you come up with those crazy characters?".…


Added by Paul Combs on December 20, 2013 at 8:17am — No Comments

Blowin' Smoke with Kevin Shea’s newest article of Blowin’ Smoke features Kevin Shea, a retired firefighter from FDNY. We are very excited about this Blowin’ Smoke article and grateful for the opportunity to interview Shea on the site. I had the pleasure of meeting him earlier this year in Chicago. He is about as humble as they come and is a wealth of knowledge. We hope you enjoy the interview.



Added by Andrew Catron on December 18, 2013 at 1:26pm — No Comments

Why the Quint Works for us; The Driver

Why the Quint Works for us; The Driver

By Lou Comenale and Justin Ientilluci

A couple of posts ago we wrote how the Quint works for our department.  That really was a quick overview of our operations and training using the Quint.  If we were to dive deeper into our operations using the Quint we have to look at each position.  Many people could make an argument for the officer sitting shotgun being the most important personnel on…


Added by Lou Comenale on December 16, 2013 at 10:18am — 1 Comment


Added by Paul Combs on December 14, 2013 at 4:21pm — No Comments

Hump Day SOS "Those Darn Scientist"

Those darn scientist keep letting facts get in the way. Several subjects of research have sparked some pretty lofty debate but most of those so passionately against the "scientist" haven't even read the material or know what it means. Most of the research is teaching us about fire behavior. Its not telling us what to do every time but rather what happens when we do what. Before you hear a rumor or make an assumption about any new research, do a little research of your own. Find out exactly…


Added by David Rhodes on December 11, 2013 at 12:42pm — 1 Comment


Never, ever lose your rookie enthusiasm and passion for the greatest calling in the world. Approach each day like a wide-eyed child who wants to soak in every experience and can never learn or do too much. Personally, I never want to look back on my career and say “I wish I would have done more”.

Do, love, share, enjoy, and experience - it all goes by so…


Added by Paul Combs on December 9, 2013 at 3:03pm — 1 Comment

Contaminate Your Crew

CDC Current Intelligence Bulletin 67: Fire Service Epidemic

        There's an epidemic in the American fire service, and terrifyingly little is known about it. Some estimate that as many as 1% of your brothers and sisters might already be infected, while others claim that number is as high as 10%,…


Added by Nick Ledin on November 30, 2013 at 8:30pm — 3 Comments


A place at the table

Some years ago, I worked on a family farm. The people I worked for treated me like a part of their family, even though I was only distantly related by marriage. Every morning before sunrise everyone would meet at the farm house and enjoy a large breakfast. The same applied during hunting season.

When my personal life came on a very rough time, I remember not wanting the family to feel uncomfortable or to put them in a bad predicament with my presence in…


Added by Warren Cersley on December 1, 2013 at 9:30am — 2 Comments

Why the Quint Works for us.

Why the Quint works for us.

By Lou Comenale and Justin Ientilluci

In many firehouses across the country you mention the word “Quint” and you might have well just insulted that firefighters favorite football team.  Even in our own department some guys still wish we would run just a Ladder Truck.  Slowly the culture is changing and the reality is setting in that running a Quint actually works in our department.…


Added by Lou Comenale on November 22, 2013 at 2:34pm — No Comments


Looking for a fun Christmas gift idea? Well, pre-orders for my new book Drawn By Fire, Too are now being accepted on the PennWell bookstore. Over 150 cartoons in a beautifully bound hard-cover book. A link for personalized copies will be available on my webstore by tomorrow. Thanks,…


Added by Paul Combs on November 19, 2013 at 8:06am — 1 Comment

Overcoming the Wall on Recessed Doors

This post was Co - Authored by Ryan Royal

Commercial outward swinging doors can be some of the most difficult forcible entry situations due to the locking systems and added fortification but what is often overlooked in training is access challenges. The outward swinging door below was on the back of a commercial building. You can see this situation has a half wall on the hinge side and the jamb side…


Added by Brian Brush on November 17, 2013 at 11:00pm — 1 Comment



I looked at my original fire coat today. Copper rivets repaired broken clips and canvas patches covered cuts in the coat. Although it shows some wear and tear it certainly brings back some fond memories. I remember the pocket wedges, sprinkler stops, pliers, screw drivers and a pocket knife and in which pocket they were kept and why. I physically touched each tool every morning.

Back in the day Rookies like me were given a small sponge by the veterans and told…


Added by Warren Cersley on November 1, 2013 at 1:02pm — No Comments


Units from my department and other companies in Prince George's County, Maryland responded to this second alarm fire last week. It involved a strip of two-story, attached, ordinary constructed, garden style apartment buildings.

Companies on the initial alarm had a well advanced fire in an entire apartment unit with substantial extension to the attic space.…


Added by Chief Anthony Kelleher on November 13, 2013 at 11:16am — No Comments


The term two-hatter has traditionally been used in the fire service to recognize firefighters who work for a career fire department, as well as volunteer for another. However, on this Veterans Day, I would like to recognize another two-hatter - the men and women who serve as firefighters in their communities, and serve our country as warriors here at home and abroad.…


Added by Paul Combs on November 11, 2013 at 10:30am — 3 Comments

Why We Search: Rescues from Vacants in Buffalo and Sacramento

Multiple rescues from vacant home and commercial structure


Fire crews in Buffalo, New York and Sacramento, California responded to fires in vacant, abandoned buildings and rescued squatters from each.


Video courtesy of Don…


Added by Bill Carey on November 5, 2013 at 6:44am — No Comments

Policy Page


The login above DOES NOT provide access to Fire Engineering magazine archives. Please go here for our archives.


Our contributors' posts are not vetted by the Fire Engineering technical board, and reflect the views and opinions of the individual authors. Anyone is welcome to participate.

For vetted content, please go to

Fire Engineering Editor in Chief Bobby Halton
We are excited to have you participate in our discussions and interactive forums. Before you begin posting, please take a moment to read our policy page. -- Bobby Halton

Be Alert for Spam
We actively monitor the community for spam, however some does slip through. Please use common sense and caution when clicking links. If you suspect you've been hit by spam, e-mail

FE Podcasts

Check out the most recent episode and schedule of

© 2022   Created by fireeng.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service