Wet Stuff On the Red Stuff… The Nozzle Position


By: Danny Doyle

Pittsburgh Bureau of Fire

The infamous statement “The fire goes as the first line goes”  has either become a harsh reality to  you or something that you might have read in the latest fire service journals.  We are going to dig into that statement regarding the first line, one position at a time, starting at the tip!   It could be said that this topic has been beat to death, “you can put a monkey at the tip”, or even “this isn’t rocket science!”  Well…  The only way to have a crew with continuity is to know the game plan and know each other!   A “monkey” with a few good techniques, sure, “rocket science”  no.  Common Sense, YES! Continue reading


Unique Tools of the Trade by Lt. Pete Lund

I remember every phone call from Pete that started off with “You will not believe what JAF made this week”. JAF was better known as Jack-Ass Fabrications out of the shop at Rescue 2 in Brooklyn. His crew of fabricators were always coming up with the next best tool to end all tools. We at Kentland were always fortunate to be recipients of these tools as Pete would bring them down to try while he was riding the bar on Tower 33. As we would be sitting back in the office talking about the production of these tools the story would always go to the fireman that created the tool or the firemen that help develop it. These stories in his typical New York fashion had me always laughing out loud and usually in tears from laughing so hard. I wanted to share these tools with our readers and also give you a glimpse of the founder of Traditions Training Lt. Pete Lund, our friend and mentor and of course a great story teller. These descriptions were written by Pete for each of these tools…

Continue reading

Getting “back” to the “rear”…

Whatever you call it on your fire-ground; the “Charlie Sector”, “Side 3”, “the rear”, “out-back”….it does not matter to me.  And, to the point of this post, it really doesn’t matter at all (this isnt a NIMS exercise). What does matter is that someone, must get to the rear.  

Because we normally operate with our rigs, hose, and personnel coming from the street side of most buildings, the rear is usually not given a high priority.  Often it is not addressed until much later into the fire operation.  Many times however, what is…. or is not…. going on in the rear will have a major impact on operations.

Continue reading

Roof Vent: Fireman’s Axe vs. Flat Axe?

Of course I’m sure most of you are saying “chain”, but we all know there are vertical ventilation situations that require the axe:

  • Saw failure… Out of gas, chain broke, you ripped the start-cord out, whatever.  It won’t start.
  • Smoky conditions.  Like all engines, that saw needs a certain amount of oxygen to run.  If the filter is bad or the smoke is just too nasty, the saw may stall out.
Those are a few of the obvious.  Some will argue that they are faster with a good axe on certain roofs then they would ever be with a saw.  In the right conditions, I can agree with that…
So lets get to the main point… When you choose an axe for roof ventilation, which are you going for?

Click more for video and to participate in our poll…

Tricks of the Trade: Thermal Imagers

Thermal Imagers  (TIC’s) are prevalent in the modern day fire department. TICs have a variety of  tactical uses including  searching for victims, searching for hotspots, water rescue, and Hazardous Materials incidents. The most common use is searching for victims in a structure fire. It should be noted that TICs: DO NOT REPLACE PROPER SEARCH TACTICS, they are merely a tool that should be used to expand upon proper search tactics.


Continue reading

Do you know where you are?

Think about where you are right now.  Yeah, I’m talking about right now.  As you sit here reading this blog.  Can you describe your location in the building?  If you had limited or no visibility are there characteristics that can be identified to depict the room your in?  In order to reach your location, what did you encounter?  Did you go up or down stairs, pass through any doors?  The questions formed above are just a few of the things that can keep you from getting in or out of trouble!  Continue reading

What’s in My Pockets: Dan Shaw

We have talked about in previous posts that what we carry is based on the space you have available, the rig you ride, and the experience you have gained from running calls. Since I ride an Engine everyday, my focus is on the simple, yet sometimes challenging, task of putting water on the fire by stretching and operating hoselines. 





Continue reading