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By now we are all familiar with the terminology "flow path". We have read the blogs, picked apart the studies, watched videos, begun seeing and recognizing the dangers of not controlling the flow path. We have had discussions and have considered our tactical options to mange the flow path. Many departments have begun to change their policies, procedures, SOP’s etc. However, there is still a piece of controlling the door that some departments struggle with the ability to assign someone to the door control position.

Many departments struggle only because of inadequate staffing levels not because lack of belief in its necessity.

Take a look at the following sequencial photos. Do you feel this is a reasonable tactic for many departments today? We know the jury is still out and only time and fireground testing is needed. However, we must all begin to find a way to control the door and limit the flow path. This may be the tool that departments need.

Photo 1 - Fire attack team readies the line while forcible entry takes place.

Photo 2 - Door is forced and the Tempest Pathmaster Door Curtain is moved into position

Photo 3 - Tempest Pathmaster is positioned in the door

Photo 4 - Pathmaster is in place and search team prepares for entry

Photo 5 - Search team makes entry

Photo 6 - Fire attack team has made entry without contributing to the flow path

Utilization of a door curtain may not be necessary for your department. However, for many departments this may be the option you need. 

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Comment by Samuel Villani, III on November 6, 2014 at 12:10pm

For departments with limited staffing (including mine) this is a great solution for providing full egress AND limiting flow path concerns. Very few departments can spare members to act as door control, period. The option is keeping a door in place, and hoping it doesn't pinch a hose line or become an obstruction for exiting firefighters, especially when in distress- which IMO is not a viable option at all. Thanks for sharing.

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