How to Ensure Rapid Forcible Entry, by Firehouse

Firefighting Articles from Desert Diamond IndustriesIn honor of the second and last day of Hands-on Training at Firehouse Expo 2013, we’d like to post this forcible entry article by the folks who’re making Firehouse Expo possible, Firehouse magazine.

This article, by Michael P. Daley, doesn’t have any forcible entry techniques. Rather, it focuses on what you should have and think about both before and during a fire. These will help you make swifter and smoother entries into structures and start your attacks and rescues sooner.

Daley makes four major points:

  • Be Prepared: Have the right tools and know how to use them. Gather as much information as possible on the buildings in your district before fires break out. Try to persuade building owners to participate in an entry lock box program.
  • Figure Out the Best Forcible Entry Method: Know how to spot drop bars, slide bars and other internal locking mechanisms on doors. Try to attack weak points in doors (e.g. jambs, hinges and even walls) or find other entries. Remember that some structures (e.g. apartment buildings) may have lots of doors that need to be forced open, each with a different locking system.
  • Control Doors: Make sure that, when you force doors open, you can close them again to prevent backdraft or flashover. Don’t shatter glass doors; instead, try attacking the lock or finding another way in.
  • Plan for the Worst: Make sure you create at least two ways out. That way, if one route is blocked, the entry team will (hopefully) have another way to exit the structure before they run out of air or time.

Firehouse, Michael P. Daley, “Using Forcible Entry to Begin Fireground Operations

We’ll be in Booth 943 at Firehouse Expo 2013 in Baltimore, MD from Thursday to Saturday this week! Read our press release for details.

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