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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

FiremanRich End of Year (2009) Review

There are those that will say the cup is half full and those that will say the cup is half empty. What is it? Well, I'm a person that always tries, at least for the most part, to look at the cup as half full.

I was given a coffee cup by a Brother Fire Fighter years back as a gift that has the statement "There Are Three Kinds Of People" on one side of it. There's three answers to pick from on the opposite side of the cup.

My Brother Fire Fighter told me when he gave me the cup that I was a person that made things happen while others watched & wondered. They weren't big things as far as I can remember but they were enough that a simple token of appreciation was give by the passing of a coffee cup that I always look upon now as being half full, even when it's empty. ; )

This is pretty much how I look upon the ending of 2009. It's a year that was half full and positive learning from others and passing on even in a small way new things to learn and knowledge to pass on. With the New Year of 2010 upon us I'm sure it will be full of new things to learn as I continue the journey.

I express some additional thoughts and outlooks in my YouTube I did earlier today on the path traveled in 2009....

"One should look at the path they traveled to continued the journey." (?)

Happy New Year! : )

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Night Before Christmas

T’was the night before Christmas and all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
When down through the chimney all covered with soot,
Came the “Spirit of Fire”—an ugly galoot.

His eyes glowed like embers, his features were stern,
As he looked all around for something to burn.
What he saw made him grumble, his anger grew higher,
For there wasn’t a thing that would start a good fire.

No door had been blocked by the big Christmas tree;
It stood in the corner leaving passageways free.
The lights that glowed brightly for Betty and Tim
Had been hung with precaution so none touched a limb.

All wiring was new, not a break could be seen,
And water at its base kept the tree nice and green.
The tree had been trimmed by a Mother insistent
That the ornaments used be fire resistant.

And Mother had known the things to avoid,
Like cotton and paper and plan celluloid.
Rock wool, metal icicles, and trinkets of glass
Give life to the tree; it really had class.

And would you believe it, right next to the tree
Was a suitable container for holding debris!
A place to throw wrappers of paper and string
From all of the gifts Santa might bring.

The ugly galoot was so mad he could bust,
As he climbed up the chimney in utter disgust.
For the folks in this home paid close attention
To all the rules of good “FIRE PREVENTION.”

Be Fire Safe To Have A Fun, Enjoyable, Joyous, And
Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays!

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Have A Merry And Fire-Safe Christmas

In the U.S. on average, 200 Christmas tree fires occur annually, causing 24 deaths. Many do not realize the hazards associated with a tree that is not properly maintained.

Each year thousands suffer injury, burns, and death due to holiday decorations and carelessness. Trees, lights, ornaments and fireplaces produce extra hazards in our homes at time when the hectic season may distract us from fire safety. Enjoy the holiday season. Here is some fire safety advice to follow for a happy holiday.

During the holidays, when homes are full of combustible items such as holiday decorations and wrapping paper preventive measures must be reinforced. There is nothing more important than providing a safe home for your family.

If you buy a natural, cut tree, check for freshness. Shedding needles are a sign of a dry tree and a serious hazard. Fresh needles won’t break when bent. Once the tree is home, keep it outside until you can decorate it. Cut off the base, one to two inches, and place it in a stable holder. Keep the holder filled with water and keep the tree away from heat.

Place your tree away from heaters and out of the exit ways. Check all lighting for safety. Look for fray or broken areas where wires are exposed. Damaged sets should be thrown out. Do not chance repairing. Keep bulbs from curtains and flammable materials and do not use candles anywhere on the tree.

No more then three sets of lights should be on an extension cord. Overloading cords can start a fire. Keep connections away from the water base and use Underwriters Laboratory (UL) listed cords of the correct size.

Use weather proof OUTDOOR lights and cords outdoors. These sets are for prolong exposure, so take them down as the season is over.

Unplug all lights and blow out candles before leaving the house or going to sleep. Do not use real candles in the windows; use electric ones listed by UL. Keep all ornaments, candles and cords away from children and pets.

Dry trees can burn like a torch and spread the fire. Remove them as soon as large amounts of needles fall.

Do not burn trees, decorations or wrapping papers in your fireplace. Wrappings and evergreens burn rapidly and throw sparks which can set the roof on fire.

Here’s a YouTube message from New York State Fire Administrator Floyd Madison informing all of the importance of keeping a natural tree properly hydrated. This YouTube video also shows how quickly a Christmas tree fire can erupt and develop once started, engulfing a room full of dangerous fire & smoke …

• ALWAYS REMEMBER keep the tree stand secure and filled with water.

• DO NOT place the tree close to a heat source, including a fireplace or heat vent.

• KEEP open flames away from your tree. Never use candles as decorations.

• ALSO REMEMBER to check and make sure your smoke detector is working and never remove the battery to use for another purpose.

Be Fire Safe To Have A Fun, Enjoyable, Joyous, And Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays!

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Portable Fire Extinguisher Can Prevent A Fire Tragedy

When a fire starts, it is usually small enough to put out quickly. Having the proper portable fire extinguisher and knowing how and when to use it can be important. When shopping for a portable fire extinguisher for the home, car, vacation cabin, boat, or recreational vehicle here are a few hints on purchasing as well as using a fire extinguisher:

Most fire extinguisher operate this way:

1. Pull the locking pin.
2. Aim at the base of the flames or fire.
3. Squeeze the handle.
4. Sweep back and forth over the burning area.

P.A.S.S. is an acronym to remember on how to place a portable fire extinguishers into operation quickly. The contents of most portable fire extinguishers last less than 30-60 seconds. Aim carefully.

Portable fire extinguishers are meant to fight small fires (no bigger than a trash can.) Fighting to large a fire can be dangerous.

Whenever a fire occurs, get everyone out first and call the local fire department. Then use your extinguisher if the fire is still small enough.

All portable fire extinguishers are not alike. They are marked with letter(s) indicating the type or “Class” of fire they can put out: “Class A” - ordinary fuels such as wood, cloth, paper, rubber, plastics; “Class B” - flammable liquids like gasoline, kerosene, oil, paint, kitchen grease; “Class C” – electricity: and “Class D” – metals.

Purchase a multi-purpose extinguisher with an “AB” or “ABC” label for home use.

Purchase only those portable fire extinguishers with the Underwriters Laboratory (UL) or Factory Mutual (FM) label. Avoid extinguishers that resemble aerosol cans. These can be dangerous when used.

Check the pressure gauge on your portable fire extinguisher periodically to see if it needs recharging. Look in the phone book for professionals to fill and recharge extinguishers.

Always refill or replace a used portable fire extinguisher immediately. Never put back an empty. An empty extinguisher is dangerous.

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Thursday, November 26, 2009

FiremanRich’s Kodak Zi8 Review

My overall impression of the Kodak Zi8 is one that this digital video camera is a nice fit to what I want to use the Zi8 for. I’m very much impressed with the simple features it has and the performance it gives in the quality of still pictures (@ 5 meg pix) and 720p digital video.

The picture and sound quality are pretty good. Where the onboard mic is satisfactory the ability to plug-in a external mic is a good offset.

The Zi8 is small in size that gives it great portability, picture/video files are easily transfer to my PC. It has basic camcorder functions with a 4X Zoom, and image stabilization.

It can record in 1080p HD, 720p @ 60 fps, and standard 720p. Uses flash card media with SD/SDHC cards up to 32 GB.

It’s portability is great, but keep in mind the Zi8 has limits. It’s a pocket camera so have realistic expectations if you purchase a Zi8.

Here’s my YouTube video on the Kodak Zi8…

Having purchased the Zi8 off of I would also recommend the Amazon site for your Christmas Holiday Shopping. It'll save you time and ensure you got that gift that you wanted to get for a family member or friend.

You can follow FiremaRich on Twitter @firemanrich.

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thanksgiving is top day for cooking fires

NFPA urges cooks to stand by their pan to prevent fires.

Next Thusday, is Thanksgiving!

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is calling on cooks across the nation to include fire safety in their recipes because Thanksgiving is the leading day for home cooking fires. U.S. firefighters responded to roughly 1,300 home fires involving cooking equipment on Thanksgiving in 2007, roughly three times the daily average of cooking fires, according to NFPA.

"Incorporating fire safety into your holiday preparations can mean the difference between putting on a fantastic holiday feast for family and friends or having to call the fire department to put out a fire," said NFPA's Vice President of Communications Lorraine Carli.

Cooking is the leading cause of home fires. During 2003-2006, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 150,200 home structure fires involving cooking equipment per year, according to the newly released NFPA report Home Fires Involving Cooking Equipment (PDF, 896 KB). These fires caused an annual average of 500 civilian deaths, 4,660 civilian injuries, and $756 million in direct property damage.

Other key findings from the report on fires during 2003-2006:

* Cooking equipment was involved in 40 percent of all reported home fires, 17 percent of home fire deaths, 36 percent of home civilian injuries, and 12 percent of the direct property damage resulting from home fires.
* Unattended cooking was by far the leading contributing factor in these fires. Something that could catch fire was too close to the equipment ranked second and unintentionally turned on or not turned off ranked third.
* Three-fifths (57 percent) of reported home cooking fire injuries occurred when victims tried to fight the fire themselves.

NFPA recommends the following cooking safety tips:

Cook with Caution

* Be on alert! If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol, don't use the stove or stovetop.
* Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling, or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.
* If you are simmering, baking, roasting, or boiling food, check it regularly, remain in the home while food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.
* Keep anything that can catch fire - oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains - away from your stovetop.

If you have a cooking fire….

* Keep a lid nearby when you're cooking to smother small grease fires. Smother the fire by sliding the lid over the pan and turn off the stovetop. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.
* For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.
* If you try to fight the fire, be sure others are getting out and you have a clear way out.
* When in doubt, just get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire.
* Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number after you leave.

NFPA has been a worldwide leader in providing fire, electrical, building, and life safety to the public since 1896. The mission of the international nonprofit organization is to reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards on the quality of life by providing and advocating consensus codes and standards, research, training, and education.

For additional information concerning fire prevention practices visit

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Volunteer Fire Department’s Fire Police

The fire fighter passed away shortly after he suffered a cardiac arrest while working traffic control at the scene of a motor vehicle accident.

Another fire fighter on a different date and at a different location responded to a report of a vehicle into a power pole. Upon his arrival on scene, he was assigned to assist with traffic control. The incident was terminated and the fire fighter cleared the incident scene. A day later, the local fire department and EMS were summoned to the fire fighter's residence and found him unable to ambulate or speak. Care was initiated and he was transported to the local hospital where he was diagnosed as having suffered an inter-cranial bleed. He was then transferred to a larger hospital where he underwent surgery. Two days after being assigned to assist with traffic control he succumbed to his injuries.

Both deaths were caused due to stress and overexertion. One fire fighter was age 62, the other fire fighter was age 72 and both are part of the 80 Line of Duty Deaths (LODD) for 2009 to date. Both fire fighters were performing Fire Police duties on the fire call.

Though it’s not physically demanding as a fire fighter that’s loaded down with equipment while pulling the hose to fight a fire, being assigned as a Fire Police officer at a fire/accident scene to perform traffic control is just as dangerous as well as stressful.

Fire Police training is conducted to allow fire fighters to perform more effectively. Training usually includes defining and interpreting terms, oath of office, relation to regular police officers, general duties, maintaining safe conditions at an emergency, traffic direction and control, pre-planning, and various laws of interest to the fire service.

Fire fighters that perform Fire Police duties are authorized to regulate and direct traffic at the scene of a fire or accident.

In New York State there are laws that give such authorization. Here is an example of one of those laws…

The New York Court of Appeals in People v. Loren held that Vehicle and Traffic Law (VTL) § 1102 permits a fire chief to empower subordinate firefighters to regulate and direct traffic at the scene of a fire or accident.

On December 17, 2003, the Village of Poland Volunteer Fire Department responded to an automobile accident. The fire chief ordered two firefighters to close the road. The two firefighters set up a roadblock using flares and one of the firefighter’s personal vehicle, with its blue emergency lights turned on. One of the firefighters was dressed in full firefighter’s "turn out" gear, and the other wore a green fluorescent vest and was holding an orange highway flag. The defendant drove around a roadblock, ignoring the firefighters’ order to stop. The firefighters called the State Police who subsequently went to the defendant’s residence and issued him a ticket for violating VTL § 1102. VTL § 1102 states that "no person shall fail or refuse to comply with any lawful order or direction of any police officer or flag person or other person duly empowered to regulate traffic." The defendant argued before the Village Court that he did not violate VTL § 1102 because volunteer firefighters are not empowered to regulate traffic. The Village Court found that the defendant violated VTL § 1102 based on the understanding that a fire chief has authority to direct traffic at the scene of an emergency and can delegate this responsibility to subordinates. The County Court affirmed the decision of the Village Court and the Court of Appeals subsequently affirmed.

The issue in the Loren case was whether volunteer firefighters are "persons duly empowered to regulate traffic" under VTL § 1102. The Court of Appeals held that volunteer firefighters may direct traffic at fire scenes and accidents when delegated such authority by the fire chief pursuant to VTL § 1602. Section 1602(b) states that:

[i]n the event of a fire or other emergency or to expedite traffic or to safeguard pedestrians or property: any police officer or other person empowered to regulate traffic at the scene may, to the extent authorized by local law . . . direct traffic as conditions may require.

The Court acknowledged that a fire chief’s responsibility to coordinate the fire department’s response to an emergency includes: protecting the public while keeping the public from obstructing the fire department’s mission.

The Court determined that the two volunteer firefighters were "duly empowered to regulate traffic" under VTL § 1102 because they were acting under instructions from the fire chief. The Court reasoned that fire chiefs may delegate their VTL § 1602 authority to regulate to their subordinates. A fire chief has exclusive control over the members of the fire department at all fires, inspections, reviews and other occasions when the fire department is on duty or parade. Town Law § 176-a; Village Law § 10-1018. The Court interpreted this control as authorizing "firefighters to undertake tasks critical to public safety, such as diverting traffic away from the scene of a fire or dangerous accident." People v. Loren, 4 N.Y.3d at 411 (2005).

Historically, fire police are used by fire departments to regulate and direct traffic at the scene of a fire or accident.1 Inf. Op. A.G. 134 (1966); Op. Compt. 61-328. The Loren case expands a fire department’s ability to regulate and direct traffic by holding that duly empowered firefighters, who are not fire police, can regulate and direct traffic at the scene of a fire or accident. A fire department’s authority and responsibility is tied to fire manic functions and its members, including fire police, are limited to responding to a fire or accident when directed by the fire chief or fire department. Op. Compt. 79-853; Inf. Op. A.G. 103 (1975). The Court’s finding that firefighters can regulate traffic at the direction of the fire chief, without needing fire police designation, enhances a firefighter’s ability to assist at the scene of an accident to provide for public safety. The Attorney General, in a 1975 opinion, stated that "members of the [fire police] squad do not have the exclusive authority to direct traffic, and any member of the volunteer fire department may, direct traffic to assist in controlling and extinguishing a fire." Inf. Op. A.G. 103 (1975).

This case enables fire chiefs to delegate authority to firefighters to control traffic at a fire,accident or other emergency. Motorists who refuse to obey the orders of a firefighter delegated with the authority to control traffic at a fire, accident or other emergency may find themselves confronted with a VTL § 1102 violation.

1Under General Municipal Law § 209-c, fire police squads are created within a volunteer fire department and when exercising their duties and responsibilities have the powers and status of peace officers. See Criminal Procedure Law § 2.10(41). Fire police squads have the same authority as police officers to regulate traffic at the scene of a fire or other emergency under VTL § 1602. VTL § 132 defines police officer to include peace officers designated pursuant to Article 2 of the Criminal Procedure Law. Criminal Procedure Law § 2.10(41) designates members of fire police squads as peace officers.

In New York State, Fire Police are active fire company members that are sworn Peace Officers. I’m sure this is the same with other Volunteer Fire Departments in other states that have Fire Police.

Fire Police are members of a specialized fire police squad within the fire company assigned to respond to emergency calls for the purpose of scene security. They receive special training and are responsible for traffic control, crowd control and fire and incident scene security during calls for service.

While the primary role of the Fire Police is scene security and to provide support for operational needs. They also assist regular Police when needed performing road closures, traffic control, crowd control at public events, missing persons searches, parade details and whatever the chief or officer in charge deems necessary for emergency incident mitigation.

Many of the above tasks also fall within the area of responsibility of the Police, but Fire Police when on the scene may allow the Police to concentrate on other more specific areas of expertise.

New York State Laws that give Fire Police their powers

Criminal Procedure Law Article 2 Section 2.10 sub 41:
fire police designated as peace officers;

General Municipal Law Section 209-c:
Organizing fire police squads within fire departments or fire companies, having the powers of and rendering services as peace officers, the duty and function of a squad and the powers of squad members.

Vehicle and Traffic Law, Section 1602, Emergency Rule Subsection (a):
Authority of Fire Police to close streets and roads for the diversion of traffic

Vehicle and Traffic Law Section 1102:
Obedience to Police Officers and Flag Persons - No person shall fail to refuse to comply with any lawful order or direction or any police officer or flag person or other person duly empowered to regulate traffic.

Vehicle and Traffic Law Section 1217:
Following Emergency Fire Vehicles Prohibited - The driver of any vehicle other than one on official business shall not follow any authorized emergency fire vehicle in the same lane or adjacent lane to the one being used by such fire vehicle at a distance closer than 200 feet while such vehicle is displaying (emergency lights) nor shall such driver drive into or park his vehicle within the block or where there is no block, within one thousand feet of where such fire vehicle has stopped in answer to a fire alarm.

Vehicle and Traffic Law Section 1218:
Crossing Fire Hose - No vehicle shall be driven over any unprotected hose of fire department when laid down on any street or private driveway, to be used at any fire or alarm of fire, without the consent of the fire department official in command.

Fire Police are in place to keep both the general public and emergency personnel safe.

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Fire Protection Training: Fire Streams

A fire stream is a stream of water or other extinguishing agent after it leaves a fire hose and nozzle until it reaches the desired point.

Fire streams are intended to reduce high temperatures from a fire and provide protection to firefighters and exposures through the following methods:

* Applying water or foam directly to burning material to reduce its temperature.

* Applying water or foam over an open fire to reduce the temperature, so fire fighters can advance hand line closer to effect extinguishment.

* Reducing high atmospheric temperature.

* Dispersing hot smoke and fire gases from a heated area by using a fire stream.

* Creating a water curtain to protect firefighters and property from heat.

Water has extinguishing properties with its ability to extinguish fire in several ways. The primary way is by cooling, which removes the heat from the fire. Another way is by smothering, which includes water’s ability to absorb large quantities of heat and also to dilute oxygen.

Water when you put water a fire or smoldering object creates steam.

The steam produced by a fire stream can be an aid to a fire extinguishment by smothering, which is accomplished when the expansion of steam reduces oxygen in a confined space.

Several characteristics of water that are extremely valuable for fire extinguishment are as follows:

* Water is readily available and inexpensive.

* Water has a grater heat-absorbing capacity than other common extinguishment agents.

* Water changing into stream requires a relatively large amount of heat.

* The greater the surface area of the water exposed, the more rapidly heat is absorbed.

To produce effective fire streams, it is necessary to know the effects of factors affecting pressure loss and gain. Two important factors that affect pressure loss and gain in a fire stream are friction loss and elevation. Pressure changes possible due to friction loss in a hose and appliances. A loss or gain in pressure may result due to elevation and direction of water flow up hill or down hill.

Friction loss is defined as that part of total pressure that is lost while forcing water through pipe, fittings, fire hose, and adapters.

One point to consider in applying pressure to water in a hose line is that there is a limit to the velocity or speed at which the water can travel. If the velocity is increased beyond the limits, the friction becomes so great that the water in the hose line is agitated by resistance. Certain characteristics of hose layouts such as hose size and length of the lay also affect friction loss.

In order to reduce pressure loss doe to friction, consider the following guidelines.

- Check for rough linings in the hose
- Replace damaged hose couplings
- Eliminate sharp bends in hose when possible
- Use adapters to make hose connections only when necessary
- Keep nozzles and valves fully open when operating hose lines
- Use proper size hose gaskets for the hose selected
- Use short hose lines as much as possible
- Use larger hose (for exp. Increase from booster hose to 1 ¾ hose or from 1 ¾ hose to 2 ½ hose) or multiple lines when floe must be increased Reduce the amount of flow (for exp. Change nozzle tips or reduce flow setting)

Elevation refers to the position of an object above or below sea level. In a fire fighting operation, elevation refers to the position of the nozzle in relation to the pumping apparatus which is at ground level. Elevation pressure refers to a gain or loss in a hose line caused by a change in elevation. When a nozzle is above the pumper there is a pressure loss, when the nozzle is below the pump, there is a pressure gain, these losses and gains occur because of gravity.

When the flow of water through fire hose or pipe is suddenly stopped, a surge is referred to as water hammer. Water hammer can often be herd as a distinct sharp clank, very much like a hammer striking a pipe. This sudden stopping results in a change in the direction of energy. This energy creates excessive pressure that can cause considerable damage to water mains, plumbing, fire hose, hydrants, and fire pumps.


A water fire stream is identified by its size and type. The size refers to the volume of water flowing per min; the type indicates a specific pattern of water. Fire streams a classified in to three different sizes: low-volume streams, hand line streams, and master streams. The rate of discharge of a fire stream is measured in gallons per min(GPM) or liters per min(L/min)

- Low-volume stream-discharges less than 40gpm including those fed by booster hose lines
- Hand line stream-supplied by 1 ½ to 3inch hose which flows from 40 to 350gpm nozzles witch flows in excess of 350gpm are not recommended.
- Master stream- discharges more than 350gpm and is fed by multiple 2 ½ or 3 inch hose lines connected to a master stream nozzle. Master streams are large-volume fire streams.

A solid stream is a fire stream produced from affixed orifice, smoothbore nozzle, it is designed to produce a stream as compact as possible with little shower or spray. It has the ability to reach areas that other streams might not be able to reach, minimize the chance of steam burns to fire fighters and better penetration to the fire It can be affected by gravity, friction of the air, and wind.

When solid stream nozzles are used as hand lines they should be operated at 50psi. Used as a master stream should be operated at 80 psi.


- Solid streams maintain better visibility for firefighters than other types of streams.
- Have grater reach than other types of streams.
- Operate at a reduced nozzle pressure per gallon than other types of streams thus reducing the nozzle reaction.
- Have grater penetration power than other types of streams.
- Less likely to disturb normal thermal layering of heat and gases during interior structural attacks then other types of streams.


- Do not allow for different stream patterns.
- Can not be used for foam applications.
- Provide less heat absorption per gallon delivered than other types of streams.

CAUTION: Do not use solid streams on energized electrical equipment. Use fog patterns with at least 100psi nozzle pressure. Do not use wand applicators because they can be conductors.

A fog stream is a fire stream composed of very fine water droplets. The design of the fog tip is to produce different stream patterns from the nozzle. The idea of the fog nozzle is to expose the maximum water surface for heat absorption. Fog nozzles permit settings of straight stream, narrow-angle fog, and wide-angle fog. REMBER LEFT FOR LIFE RIGHT FOR FIGHT.

There are five factors that affect the reach of a fog nozzle:

- Gravity
- Water velocity
- Fire stream pattern selection
- Water droplet friction with air
- Wind

Fore water flow adjustment, it is often desirable to control the rate of water flow through a fog nozzle such as when the water supply is limited. Two types of nozzles provided this capability: manually adjusting and automatic nozzles.

Manual adjusting nozzles: you can adjust the nozzle flow by turning the dial on the nozzle

Automatic nozzles: you can adjust the nozzle flow by opening and closing the valve.

CAUTION: Water flow adjustments in manual and automatic for nozzles require close coordination between the nozzle person, the company officer, and the pump operator.


- The discharge pattern of fog streams may be adjusted to suit the situation
- Some fog nozzles have adjustable settings to control the amount of water being used
- Fog streams dissipate heat by exposing the maximum water surface for heat absorption


- Fog streams do not have the reach or penetration power of solid streams.
- Fog streams are more susceptible to wind currents.
- Fog streams may contribute to fire spread create heat inversion, and cause steam burns to firefighters when improperly used during interior attacks.

Maintenance of nozzles:

- Check the swivel gasket for damage or wear replace worn or missing gaskets.
- Look for external damage to the nozzle.
- Look for internal damage and debris. When necessary, thoroughly clean nozzles with soap and water using soft bristle brush.
- Check for ease of operation by physically operating the nozzle parts. Clean and lubricate and moving parts that appeared to be sticking according to manufacture’s recommendations.
- Check to make sure that the pistol grip is secured to the nozzle.

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Who Has Influenced You?

We are who we are and become who we are by those that have influenced us throughout our lifes.

For me, my biggest influence in life was my Father who always stood tall, in my eyes, like John Wayne on the big movie screen in the 1949 movie classic Sands of Iwo Jima. Always did like that movie along with the other movies the Duke was in. Would have to say the military movies the Duke stared in were my favorite. That’s probably one of the influences of why I entered the military after high school. Of course I was soon to find out that the movie military life and real life military were two different things. Go figure lol. All and all though it wasn’t a bad gig serving in the US Air Force. The time I served, I came across a lot of great influences that molded me into the person I am today.

Oh did I tell you also that my Dad was a volunteer fireman or what you would call now a volunteer fire fighter when I was growing up? Yup, he was. I use to hang around the local fire station with my Dad when he was busy doing something around the station after I got out of school with the other volunteer fireman like cleaning up the fire house, the fire trucks, or I was waiting till they returned from a fire call. Watching and learning even though I didn’t realize it. I soon enough joined the local volunteer fire department when I was of age. My Dad being an influence to me in joining because I saw it was all about helping people that were in need when the call came in. Always sort of neat when your doing the help people thing. : )

Since starting this blog I can say I’ve learned a lot, with a lot more to learn, and that I’ve also been influenced by people that are online. Some of these individual are what I would say are “heavy hitters” in that they know what their doing. You could say they’ve influenced me in a big way on how I should be as an online presence too. Be it reading others online that have blogs, or on twitter, or who I met on facebook there’s an influence with each and everyone that is online these days.

I came across a YouTube of a person name Micah Baldwin @micah on “Building Influence Online” who talked about such at Gnomedex 9. What’s a Gnomedex? Well, I soon found out by watching a few of the YouTubes about it with the various guest speakers. Gnomedex is a conference that has a lot of influence with all the great information presented.

Here Micah’s YouTube presentation at Gnomedex 9…

“Write like no one is reading. Write when you want to write. The moment you think “that would be a good blog post” you become a blogger.”

Those three sentences in Micah’s Gnomedex 9 presentation about blew me out of my chair. Wow I said, Wow again I said! Why? I found with those 3 statements, in it’s simplest form, is what it was all about to be doing this blog thing. Micah’s influence in this YouTube has made me begin to think and hopefully become a blogger of some sorts. I blog so I am a blogger.

Didn’t know that Micah Baldwin was the founder of “FollowFriday” on Twitter? Yeah he is, which is pretty neat knowing how it all got stared. “Tweet On Twitter & Have Fun” is my twitter motto and Micah has just made it more fun to do the twitter thing on followfriday. Thank-you Micah!

Some of those online “heavy hitter” influences that I follow either from their online web/blog page and via twitter are:

Joel Comm @joelcomm, Chris Pirillo @chrispirill, James Holmes @AskJamesHolmes, Lisa Irby @2createawebsite, Jim Stround @jimstroud, Jake Press @jakepress

I would recommend these individuals to anyone new to the online scene, blogging scene, or who ever is doing the twitter thing.

Want to thank Chris Pirillo @chrispirill for the Gnomedex-9 YouTubes. GREAT FRICKEN STUFF DUDE! I know Chris I know, no shouting in the live chat room but here on TFPFP I allow myself alittle shout out to those that are pretty cool. Thank-you. : )

Now I’ve come across a lot of very polished and very good content bloggers too since starting the TFPFP blog from the many people I follow online and on twitter. All have an influence on me or I wouldn’t be reading their blogs or following them on twitter. They have an online presence of influence.

So my early influence of my view of the military and the volunteer fire department made me travel down the path as a United States Air Force Fire Protection Specialist, which is actually a fancy name that basically means “Fireman.” LoL I know you have to say fire fighter now. Guess I’m still old school. : )

I’ve been out of the USAF for awhile now but I still belong to the local volunteer fire department in my community and my current job has me in some cases having a second opportunity of doing what I did in the USAF, that being an Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighter (ARFF). They say second opportunities are rare but the opportunity of people having an influence on your life that is positive in nature is even more rare.

Thank-you Dad, and thank-you all out there in that vast internet world.

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Candle Fire Safety

With the holidays fast approaching and the increased usage of seasonal decorations, it is important to focus on candle fire safety and prevention. Each year, candles cause an estimated 17,400 home structure fires, resulting in 180 deaths and 1,575 injuries. Because the majority of candle fires result from human error and negligence, candle fires and their associated casualties are preventable.

• If possible, avoid using lighted candles.

• If you must use candles, ensure that they are placed in sturdy holders.
• Keep candles away from children and pets.

• Be sure to extinguish candles after each use.

• Never leave burning candles unattended.

By following a few candle safety tips, everyone can enjoy a safer and happier holiday season.
Data source: 2001-2005 NFPA 5-year average of candle fire estimates.
U.S. Fire Administration

For information and resources on this subject visit
(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Friday, October 30, 2009

Change Your Clock, Change Your Battery

As part of the "Change Your Clock, Change Your Battery" annual home fire safety campaign, your local fire departments, urge you to adopt a simple, potentially life saving habit: Change the batteries in your smoke alarms when you change your clocks ahead to daylight saving time this November 1st.


• Each day, an average of three children die in home fires - 1,100 children each year. About 3,600 children are injured in house fires each year. 90 percent of child fire deaths occur in homes without working smoke alarms.

• Although smoke alarms are in 92 percent of American homes, nearly one-third don't work because of old or missing batteries.

• The hours between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m. are the peak alarm times for home fire deaths – when people tend to be asleep and the house is likely to be dark.

• About 65 percent of home-fire deaths result from fires in homes without working smoke alarms or the smoke alarms that are present are not working

• Only 23 percent of U.S. families have developed and practiced a home fire escape plan to ensure they could escape quickly and safely. Developing a family emergency escape plan can be crucial to everyone's safety.

• Smoke alarms don't last forever. They should be replaced at least every 10 years.

• A working smoke alarm reduces the risk of dying in a home fire by nearly half.

• The "Change Your Clock, Change Your Battery" campaign encourages you to arm yourself against home fires by taking some basic home fire safety precautions, including installing fresh batteries in smoke alarms.

Here's NFPA's Sharon Gamache discusses, in the following YouTube video, the latest information on types of smoke alarms you need, their placement and special features. Working smoke alarms give you early warning to help you escape a fire.

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Safety Tips for a Fun Halloween

Paying attention to a few safety tips during Halloween activities can be the difference between a night of fun and a night of tragedy.

Remembering simple safety tips can go a long way in keeping kids safe.

Decorations were the first item ignited in an estimated average of more than 1,000 home structure fires per year during 2002-2005, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) report Home Structure Fires that Began with Decorations (PDF, 80 KB). More than half of these fires were started by candles.

“There are many things that parents, kids, and adults can do to make sure that Halloween remains a very safe holiday,” said Lorraine Carli, NFPA’s vice president of communications. “Make sure costumes purchased are labeled flame-resistant or flame-retardant, choose materials that will not easily ignite, and keep fire safety in mind when decorating your home, both inside and out.”

Halloween is a fun and memorable experience for children and their parents. Ensure that costumes are flame-resistant or flame-retardant, and keep safety in mind when using decoration in the home.

Fire safety concerns are often unique at haunted houses and other spooky venues typically visited during this time of year.

“It is important to know how to get out of a room or a building in case of emergency no matter where you are, and to teach kids to do the same,” said Carli. “A haunted house is a unique venue and with other things competing for your attention, it may take a little extra effort to identify exits and plan your escape; however, if there is an actual emergency or the ghosts and goblins simply get too scary, you’ll be glad you did!”

Dried flowers, cornstalks and crepe paper are highly flammable. Keep these and other decorations well away from all open flames and heat sources, including light bulbs and heaters.

Remember to keep exits clear of decorations, so nothing blocks escape routes.

Tell children to stay away from open flames. Be sure they know how to stop, drop and roll if their clothing catches fire. If children are attending a Halloween party at another home, have them look for exits and know how they would exit in an emergency.

Use flashlights as alternatives to candles or torch lights when decorating walkways and yards. They are much safer for trick-or-treaters, whose costumes could brush against the lighting.

NFPA has been a leader in providing fire, electrical, building and life-safety information to the public since 1896. The mission of the international nonprofit organization is to reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards on the quality of life by providing and advocating consensus codes and standards, research, training and education. Visit NFPA’s Web site at .

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Fire Prevention: Proper Escape Plan Becomes Essential

The fire prevention saying of “Play it safe, Plan your escape” has a lot of meaning for everyone’s daily routine. It’s usually during the month of October that schools and places of work hold yearly fire evacuation drills.

Usually we walk into a building the way we leave, through the main entrance. “No big deal,” most will say, “we do this when entering any building, even our homes.”

What if, and it has happened, this path of travel through the main entrance is blocked because of a fire? What do you do then?

A proper plan of escape now becomes essential. Preplanning maximizes a safe escape and is part of everyone’s daily fire prevention duties.

It only takes a moment to do a quick survey, upon entering a building, and plan an escape. Knowing two exits out of a building requires nothing more than a glance around. You can also try getting in the habit of taking an exit other than the normal entry.

A facility may have the maximum occupancy allowed. If something should happen, most people will head for the main entrance automatically. This action could result in injury or loss of life in a fire situation. Everyone should be aware of an alternate exit out.

In our homes we all have a feeling of security that nothing bad will happen. Seventy percent or so of fatal fires in homes occur between 8 p.m. and 8 a.m.. This fact makes it even more important to have a home escape plan. Exit Drills in the Home, otherwise known as E.D.T.H. plan is a good way to begin.

Have a diagram or floor plan of your home showing locations of all doors and windows. Each family member should know two routes out, from every room. Bedroom doors should always be kept close at night to keep fire away if one should start. In a fire situation, check doors by touching the upper part first. If it’s hot do not open in. Exit out another door to the outside or a window. If the home is a multi-story building, open a window and wait for the fire department’s assistance. It’s a good idea to have smoke detectors installed on every level of the home. Test them monthly and change the batteries each year.

If a fire occurs, all family members should leave the home quickly, closing doors behind them to help confine smoke and fire. Do not stop to take possessions along. Report the fire immediately.

No one should ever go back into the house that’s on fire. People die or are injured because fire intensify and can get worse in a matter of seconds. Have a pre-arrange meeting place outside the home.

Your local fire department can answer questions concerning the establishing a fire escape plan.

Learn Not to Burn, Be fire Safe.

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Fire Protection Training: Hose Loads

Picture this scenario, we have a fire, a fire truck, and water. We need a way to get the water from the fire truck to the fire. The best method found is by using a flexible tube we refer to as fire hose. Fire hose has been one of the most important tools for firefighters for many of years. It replaced the aging bucket brigades and aided the firefighters in a rapid method of getting the water to where it needs to be, “on the fire.”

Fire hoses are a type of flexible tube used by firefighters to carry water under pressure from the source of supply to a point where it is discharged. A fire hose is the most used item in the fire service.

Fire hoses are manufactured in different configurations such as: Single jacket, Double jacket, Rubber single jacket, or Hard rubber non-collapsing types. There are various “Fire Hose Sizes.” Each hose is designed for a specific purpose. Diameter of fire hose refers to the dimensions of the inside of the hose. Fire hose is most commonly cut and coupled into lengths of 50 or 100 feet. Intake hose is used to connect a fire department pumper or a portable pump to a near-by water source. There are also two groups of intake hose: Soft Sleeve – transfer water from a pressurized source, and Hard Suction – used primarily to draft water from an open water source.

There are many causes and prevention of fire hose damage. The fire hose is a tool that is subjected to many sources of damage. The most important factor is the care that is given after fires, in storage, and on the apparatus. A fire hose can not endure: mechanical injury, heat, mildew, mold, or chemical contacts to list a few.

There are some general hose loading guidelines related the fire hoses. These guidelines should be followed regardless of the type of hose load being used.

Check gaskets and swivel before connecting any coupling. Keep flat sides of the hose in the same plane when two sections of hose are connected. Tighten the couplings hand tight when two sections of hose are connected. Never use wrenches or undue force. Remove wrinkles from fire hose when it must be bent to form a loop in the hose bed by pressing with the fingers so the inside of the bend is smoothly folded.

Make a short fold (Dutchman) in the hose during the loading process so that couplings do not have to be turned around to be pulled out of the bed.

The loading of large diameter hoses (3 ½ inch or larger), all couplings need to be placed at the front of the bed. This procedure saves space and allows the hose to lie flat. Couplings should be laid in a manner that does not require them to turn over when the hose pays out of the bed. Do not pack hose to tight because this puts excess pressure on the folds of the hose, and causes couplings to snag when hose pays out of the bed. General rule is to allow enough room for the hand to be easily inserted between the folds.

On a fire truck there can be different types of loads and setups depending what is best for your department:

“The Accordion Hose Load,” derives its name from the appearance after loading. The first coupling is placed in the bed located to the rear of the bed. Simple design it requires only two or three people to load the hose on to the vehicle. When deployed an accordion load, you can pick up a number of folds and placing them on the shoulder.

“The Horseshoe Load,” is named for the way it appears after loading. The fire hose is laid on the edge around the perimeter of the hose bed in a U-shape. The last length is in the center of the horseshoe. The primary advantage in using this hose load is fewer sharp bends. Disadvantage is, the hose sometimes comes out in a wavy, or snakelike, lay in the street, and horseshoe loads don’t work for large diameter hose. When loading the horseshoe load in a single bed the first length may be started on either side. In a split bed, first length is started against the partition.

“The Flat Hose Load,” is the easiest to load and is suitable for any size of hose. The best way to load large diameter hose is have it laid so the folds are flat. Disadvantage to this type of hose load are folds contain sharp bends at both ends. In a singe hose bed, may be started on either side. In a split bed, lay the first length against the partition with the coupling hanging an appropriate distance below the hose bed. The flat load can be adapted for loading large diameter hose. Flat loads can also be loaded directly from the street or ground by straddling the hose with the pumper and driving slowly backward. A hose wringer or roller can be used to expel the air and water from the hose as its being placed in the hose bed. To keep the couplings from turning over, make a short fold or reverse bend (Dutchman) in the hose.

The Dutchman serves two purposes, it changes the direction of the coupling and it changes the location of the coupling.

When using the different types of hose loads for the fire truck’s supply hose lays remember to keep threaded coupling supply hose, usually arranged in the hose bed, so when hose is laid off the fire truck, the end with the female is toward the water source and the male end is toward the fire.

Several hose lays options are available, the basic hose lays for supply hose are the Forward lay (straight lay), Reverse lay, and Split lay (combination lay).

Regardless of the method chosen, the following basic guidelines should be followed when laying hose, do not ride in a standing position anytime the apparatus is moving. Drive the fire truck at a speed no greater than that which allows the couplings to clear the tailboard as the hose leaves the bed – generally between 5 and 10 miles an hour.

Once hoselines have been laid out and connected for firefighting, they must be advanced into final position on the fire ground. Advancing hoselines into a structure general safety guidelines should be observed. Place the firefighter on the nozzle and back-up firefighter(s) on the same side of the line. Check the door for heat before entering. Release (bleed) air from hoseline once it is charged and before entering the building or fire area. Stay low and avoid blocking ventilation openings such as doorways or windows. When advancing hose up a stairway the shoulder carry is adaptable to stairway advancement. Lay the hose on the outside wall of the stairs to avoid sharp kinks and bends. Excess hose should be flaked up the stairs toward the floor above the fire floor. Firefighters should be positioned at every turn or areas of resistance to ensure swift efficient deployment of the hoseline. When advancing hose down a stairway an uncharged hoseline is easier than advancing a charge hoseline and this is recommended ONLY when there is no fire present or it is very minor. Firefighters must be stationed at critical points to help feed the hoseline.

When advancing hose up a ladder this can best achieved with a uncharged line. If already charged, it is safer, quicker, and easier to drain before advancement is made. Have one firefighter at the base of the ladder to help feed the hose. Have one firefighter at the base to heel the ladder during advancement. Have the lead firefighter drape the nozzle or end coupling over the shoulder from the front on the side being carried. This firefighter advances up the ladder to the first fly section. The second firefighter drapes a large loop of hose over the shoulder and starts up. If there is a three section ladder, a third firefighter will be required. To avoid overloading the ladder, only one person should be allowed on each section of the ladder. Rope hose tools or utility straps can also be used for this advancement. If charged and necessary to advance up the ladder. Firefighters should position themselves on the ladder within reach of each other. Each firefighter should be locked in via a leg lock or ladder belt. The hose is pushed up from firefighter to firefighter. The firefighter on the nozzle takes the line into the window, and other firefighters continue to hoist additional as necessary.

Warning: caution must be exercised to ensure that the rated capacity of the ladder is not exceeded. If the hose cannot be passed up the ladder without exceeding the load limit, another method of advancement should be used.

When operating a charged line from the ladder The hoseline should be secured to the latter with a hose strap at a point several rungs below the one the nozzle person is standing. All firefighters must use a leg lock or ladder belt to secure themselves to the ladder. The firefighter on the nozzle projects the nozzle through the ladder and holds it with a rope hose tool or similar aid. When the line and firefighters are secured, the nozzle can be opened.

There may be times on the fire ground to extending a section of hose on the fire ground after being deployed. Occasionally it becomes necessary to extend a length of hose with the same size or perhaps even smaller hose. This situation is very dangerous. Start with closing a valve at the pump or hydrant to turn off the water is the safest way to control. A hose clamp may be used at a stationary point. It is possible to kink the hose at a point away from the break.

The fire hose is the most common and most used tool we have in the fire service. Each firefighter must understand the mechanics of its use and the appliances as well as tools needed to make your job more efficient and easier. Fore more information concerning fire hoses refer to the IFSTA Essentials of Fire Fighting on Fire Streams.

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Monday, October 19, 2009

USFA: 118 Firefighters Died on Duty in 2008 in the United States

Emmitsburg, MD. – The United States Fire Administration (USFA) released the report Firefighter Fatalities in the United States in 2008. The report continues a series of annual studies by the USFA of on-duty firefighter fatalities. The USFA is the single public agency source of information for all on-duty firefighter fatalities in the United States each year.

"The causes of death among firefighters are well known and the steps necessary to protect firefighters have been studied and reported in numerous forums,” United States Fire Administrator Kelvin J. Cochran said. “We must take the necessary steps to ensure, as much as possible, all firefighters return from every call, safely."

The unique and specific objective of Firefighter Fatalities in the United States is to identify all on-duty firefighter fatalities that occurred in the United States and its protectorates during the calendar year and to present in summary narrative form the circumstances surrounding each occurrence.

An overview of the 118 firefighters that died while on duty in 2008:

* The total break down included 66 volunteer, 34 career, and 18 wildland agency firefighters.

* There were 5 firefighter fatality incidents where 2 or more firefighters were killed, claiming a total of 18 firefighters' lives.

* 26 firefighters were killed during activities involving brush, grass or wildland firefighting, more than twice the number killed the previous year.

* Activities related to emergency incidents resulted in the deaths of 75 firefighters.

* 28 firefighters died while engaging in activities at the scene of a fire.

* 21 firefighters died while responding to, and 3 while returning from, emergency incidents.

* 12 firefighters died while they were engaged in training activities.

* 13 firefighters died after the conclusion of their on-duty activity.

* Heart attacks were the most frequent cause of death for 2008 with 45 firefighter deaths.

For 32 years, USFA has tracked the number of firefighter fatalities and conducted an annual analysis. Through the collection of information on the causes of firefighter deaths, the USFA is able to focus on specific problems and direct efforts toward finding solutions to reduce the number of firefighter fatalities in the future. This information is also used by many organizations to measure the effectiveness of their current efforts directed toward firefighter health and safety.

The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation, which worked closely with USFA on this report, also maintains a list of firefighters who die in the line-of-duty and are honored during the annual National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weekend held each October in Emmitsburg, Maryland. Visit for more information about the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation and their assistance to the families of the firefighters lost in 2008 and beyond.

Year-to-date monthly and annual USFA firefighter fatality reports are posted on the USFA's Web site at

Firefighter Fatalities in the United States in 2008 (PDF, 3.1 Mb)

You can also follow U.S. Fire Administration(USFA) on Twitter at

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Fire Protection Training: Bunker Gear

Why do firefighters wear red suspenders?

To hold their pants up.

The 2009 Fire Prevention Week theme, “Stay Fire Smart! Don’t Get Burn” is an outlook every fire fighter can take to heart when facing a raging fire on the fire ground. One basic and important item that helps keep the fire fighter from getting burned is the safe use of structure protective clothing or what I call as well as other fire fighters, “bunker gear.” There’s structural bunker gear for the building or MVA fire and there is also the ARFF bunker gear or silver proximity suit for aircraft fires/incidents. Both types of bunker gear I have worn, used, and it has provide me protection to a certain degree of keeping from getting burned. The bunker gear is not fire proof or fire resistant and all who wear this type of personal protective equipment (PPE) need to know what the limitations are. Let’s review some basic aspects of both types of bunker gear:

Structural Bunker Gear:
Structural fire fighters’ protective clothing is designed to protect its wearer from the thermal environments experienced during fire fighting. This includes protection from thermal radiation, hot gas convection, and heat conduction from hot surfaces. Fire fighters may receive serious burn injuries from each of these modes of heat transfer or a combination of them even though they are wearing protective clothing. In addition, fire fighters’ protective clothing is often wet when it becomes heated by the fire fighting environment. Hot vapors and steam are generated inside protective clothing systems that also produce serious burn injuries. Fire fighters’ protective clothing has definite physical limits associated with its ability to protect the wearer. These safe use limits are poorly understood and are not addressed in current fire service protective clothing standards.

Research groups are studying these physical safe use limits for thermal performance of fire fighters’ protective clothing, and developing new test apparatus and predictive tools that will provide insight into the causes of burn injuries. This effort is helping to develop a better understanding and define the safe use limits of fire service protective clothing. As a result, this research effort will assist in reducing the number of serious fire fighter injuries.

Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighting (ARFF) Bunker Gear:

Aircraft firefighting/rescue protective clothing (also known as the proximity suit), better known as "silvers/silver bunker suit" is a fire suit designed to protect a firefighter from high radiant fire loads, such as those produced by JP fuels or other bulk flammable fuels. They are worn for aircraft firefighting. They are currently manufactured from vacuum deposited aluminized materials that reflect the high radiant loads produced by the fire. The suits are certified to meet the National Fire Protection Association Standard NFPA 1976-2000, Standard on Protective Ensemble for Proximity Fire Fighting.

Aircraft firefighting/rescue protective clothing is a prime safety consideration for personnel engaged in firefighting and rescue work. Metalized protective clothing offers a means of providing protection to firefighters because of its high percentage of reflectivity to radiant heat. It is important to point out that these garments are not classified as entry suits, but are known as proximity clothing to be worn with firefighter boots that have safety toes and soles.

Firefighters assigned ARFF duties shall be provided with a complete set of protective clothing that meets appropriate NFPA standards. A complete set of protective clothing includes trousers, coat, gloves, nomex hood and proximity helmet or hood and boots.

How do you don personal protective clothing for structural fire and aircraft fires/incidents? Simply put, you put it on to fully provide protection using all bunker gear issued to you.

Proper protective clothing is issued to each firefighter and its use is mandatory on any fire ground. Your personal safety and your value as a crew member depends on your utilization of the personal protective clothing correctly.
Here are a few YouTube videos where Captain Joe Bruni shows how to properly don structural personal protective clothing.…

With fire protection training to become qualified and certified in wearing the SCBA here’s Captain Joe Bruni once again showing in this YouTube video of putting it all together in donning both bunker gear along with the SCBA.…

Because of the variety of situations and exposures firefighters encounter, it is very difficult to provide personal protective clothing and equipment that will meet all needs. The firefighter must fully understand the shortcomings and limitations of various items of clothing and not exceed those limitations through training and use on the fire ground.

Regardless of the degree of protection afforded by any piece of clothing or equipment, much of the effectiveness will be lost if firefighters are not fully trained in its use and maintenance. The correct usage and maintenance of all items of protective equipment are heavily dependent on the individual firefighter's attitude, training and maintenance knowledge. All types of equipment are vulnerable to various forms of deterioration and failure of this piece of equipment would be extremely hazardous. Firefighters should receive instruction on inspecting equipment for deterioration or malfunction and trained, where applicable, in correcting defects.

Don’t get burned by not wearing fire protective equipment hap-hazardously, wear it correctly, and Be Fire Safe.

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Safety Tips For Adults

Every 39 minutes someone in the U.S. is injured in a home fire.

Home fires result in hundreds of people being burned and even killed in the United States of America each year. That’s why teaming up with local fire departments across the country for Fire Prevention Week 2009 to urge all residents to “Stay Fire Smart! Don’t Get Burned.”

Fire Prevention Week 2009 focuses on ways to keep homes fire safe and prevent painful burns. By following simple safety rules, you can “Stay Fire Smart!”

Don’t Get Burned

* Keep hot foods and liquids away from tables and counter edges so they cannot be pulled or knocked over.

* Have a 3-foot “kid-free” zone around the stove.

* Never hold a child in your arms while preparing hot food or drinking a hot beverage.

* Teach children that hot things hurt.

* Be careful when using things that get hot such as curling irons, oven, irons, lamps, heaters.

* When using heating pads only use for 15-20 minutes at a time and don’t lie, sit or place anything on the pad.

Just Right?

* To avoid scalds, set the thermostat setting in your water heater to no higher than 120 degrees F.

* Remember young children and older adults skin burns more easily.

* Consider having “anti-scald” devices on tub faucets and shower heads to prevent scalds.

* Test the water before placing a child or yourself in the tub.

* Never leave young children alone in the tub, shower or near a sink.

* Be careful about scalding water. The water should feel warm, not hot. Before you put your child in the tub, test the temperature with your wrist, elbow, or the back of your hand. Don't rely on a tub with a temperature indicator, such as a drain plug that changes color to indicate too hot, too cold, and just right. If you're using a thermometer with a read-out, infant bath water should be no more than 100 degrees. Even when using a thermometer use your wrist, elbow, or the back of your hand as your main guide.

Cool a Burn

* Treat a burn right away. Put it in cool water for three to five minutes. Cover with a clean, dry cloth.

* If the burn is bigger than your fist or if you have any questions, get medical help right away.

* Remove all clothing, diapers, jewelry and metal from the burned areas.

Cooking with Caution

* The leading cause of fires in the kitchen is unattended cooking.

* Pay attention to what you are cooking. Stay in the kitchen when you are frying, grilling, or broiling food.

* When you are simmering, boiling, baking, or roasting food, check it regularly, stay in the home, and use a timer to remind you.

* If you must leave the room even for a short time, turn off the stove.

* If you have young children, use the stove’s back burners whenever possible.

* Keep children and pets at least 3 feet away from the stove.

* When you cook, wear clothing with tight-fitting or short sleeves.

* Allow food cooked in a microwave oven to cool for a few minutes before you take it out.

* Open micro waved food slowly. Hot steam from the container can cause burns.

The Heat is On…

* Have a 3 foot kid-free zone around open fires and heaters.

* Use a fireplace screen to keep sparks inside the fireplace.

* Turn portable space heaters off when you go to bed or leave the room.

* Keep things that can burn, such as paper, bedding, or furniture, at least 3 feet from heaters.

* Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected each year by a professional.

* Make sure your portable space heater has an auto shut-off so if it is tipped over, it will shut off.

* Have your chimneys cleaned and inspected before each heating season.

Take it Outside

* Ask smokers to smoke outside.

* Give smokers deep, sturdy ashtrays.

* Never smoke if you are tired, have taken medicine, drugs, or alcohol that makes you sleepy.

* Keep smoking materials away from things that can burn, like bedding, furniture, and clothing.

Stay Grounded

* Keep lamps, light fixtures, and light bulbs away from anything that can burn, such as lamp shades, bedding, curtains, and clothing.

* Replace cracked and damaged electrical cords.

* Use extension cords for temporary wiring only. Consider having additional circuits or receptacles added by a qualified electrician.

* If you have young children in your home have tamper-resistant electrical receptacles.

* Call a qualified electrician or landlord if you have recurring problems with blowing fuses or tripping circuit breakers, discolored or warm wall outlets, flickering lights or a burning or rubbery small coming form an appliance.

Neighborhood Watch

* With the economic downturn, it is important to keep a watchful eye on your neighborhood.

* Encourage your community to implement an anti-arson program.

* Keep trash from collecting on your property.

* Remove abandoned vehicles from your property.

* Remove dead branches that could be used as a fuel source.

Fire-Safety Basics

* Install smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home. For the best protection, interconnect all smoke alarms throughout the home. When one sounds, they all sound.

* For best protection use both photoelectric and ionization technology. You can use individual ionization and photoelectric smoke alarms or combination units that contain both technologies in the same unit.

* Test smoke alarms at least once a month using the test button.

* Replace smoke alarms every 10 years.

* Make sure everyone can hear the sound of the smoke alarms.

* Have a home fire escape plan. Know at least two ways out of every room, if possible, and a meeting place outside. Practice your escape plan twice a year.

* When the smoke alarm sounds, get out and stay out.

* If you are building or remodeling your home, consider a home fire sprinkler system.

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Stay Fire Smart! Don’t Get Burned!

Fire Prevention Week is October 4 – 10

Fire Prevention Week is October 4 – 10. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), along with local fire departments and other safety advocates nationwide are urging people to Stay Fire Smart! Don’t Get Burned.

Fire departments responded to an estimated 1.5 million fires in 2008. These fires resulted in 3,320 civilian fire fatalities, 16,705 civilian fire injuries and an estimated $15.5 billion in direct property loss.

“Every 22 seconds a fire department responds to a fire somewhere in the United States,” said Lorraine Carli, NFPA’s vice president of communications. “Fires kill roughly 3,000 people each year and injure thousands. These statistics are especially tragic because most fires can be prevented and the deaths and injuries associated with them can be avoided. Fire Prevention Week is dedicated to focusing on important safety information that will help you stay safe from fire year round.”

This year’s campaign, Stay Fire Smart! Don’t Get Burned focuses on ways to prevent fires, and the deaths, injuries, and property loss they cause. Eighty-four percent of all fire deaths were caused by home fires. By providing valuable information on fire and burn prevention and safety tips, the campaign aims to help the public keep their homes and the people who live there safe from fire and burns.

Here are some very important YouTube videos for Fire Prevention Week 2009, that cover concerns everyone needs to know and be aware of when it comes to being Fire Safe:

Have a great Fire Prevention Week 2009. Remind family, friends, and co-works of daily Fire Prevention Practices. Make it a practice that is done 24/7 year round. Remember also…

Stay Fire Smart! Don’t Get Burned!

(The usual disclaimers: I am not a journalist; This is a blog that expresses an outlook and is not conclusive in any shape or manner.)

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