Firefighter Training Podcast – Episode 3 RIT Timeline

This week we discuss some current events and the RIT timeline and crew survivability.

Listen HERE

Current Events:

Coventry RI Fire Department being dissolved

Fire engineering Forcible entry drill and Oxygen and smoking fire in Massachusetts

Another FDNY EMS Lt. In trouble on social media and more hate speak in support of him

Utica NY FD SUV accident

Missouri chief seriously hurt in tanker roll over

DC firefighters take a vote of no confidence in their chief

Ice smashing an engine windshield in Wayne Twp Indiana

Dayton Ohio Captain struck while operating on the roadway.

More from Firegeezer about dangerous roadway operations.

Ekom South carolina fire station burns

LODD of NJ wildland FF Jeff Scheurer age 35.

Send feedback via email, or the send voicemail tab on the side of this page.

Pete Lamb
Copyright 2013

Collapse Indications – Some Considerations

The following are some indicators to watch for and or consider that give some indicators of collapse.

Review them your self, and pass them along for a discussion among the troops.

It certainly is not all inclusive, but it is easily remembered because it spells the word COLLAPSE.

Construction of the building – Know the five types of building construction as defined by NFPA 220. Know that certain buildings, wood frame certainly, will fail quite readily under fire conditions. The mini-mart store of cinderblock with a bar joist roof will certainly fail pretty early under high fire conditions. Look around your response district.

Occupancy Loading – Does the building have contents such as paper, fabric etc., that will absorb firefighting water and add weight to the already damaged structure.

Lightweight building materials – We covered this one pretty good last week, but the bottom line is this one. While we understand that mass of the building unit adds greater weight, a larger mass will take longer to deteriorate ( IN MOST CASES, BUT NOT ALL) then a structural member that has less mass.

Length of burning time – No one person knows the answer to when a building will fail, but common sense tells us that the longer it is attacked by fire the sooner we can expect failure. How long has it been burning prior to your arrival, and how long since you have been here. This is another great use for the 15 minute status report.

Ankle deep water or accumulating water – No mystery to this one at all, water weighs 8.34 pounds per gallon, we add it to the building in 100 gallon increments. If it is not running off and just standing, let the building drain properly before completing overhaul activities.

Parallel Chord truss beams – Any team we see this type of beam, whether steel or wood, it should raise some degree of concern. Again I am not talking about the larger member chords, but certainly any lightweight beams of this type.

Special Matter – Look around your community for the telltale signs that a building may already being braced and supported from falling, without a fire inside. Corner angle braces on buildings, old fashion star supports, additional temporary columns in place are all indicators of building weakness.

Exposed steel – Again we have heard about this forever. Exposed steel will begin to lose strength when exposed to about 800 degrees. When you are doing a pre-fire inspection or survey and you see the steel beams over your head, think about that under fire conditions.

Just a couple of quick points to enhance firefighter safety and make you think. Easy to remember because each point spells the word….

Stay Safe, stay thinking!

Pete Lamb
Copyright 2013

Tactical Fire Problem – Auto parts store

This week the problem is a tire and auto parts store. Take a look.

1.) What size line is needed for this fire?

2.) What is the type of building construction here and what does that do to your tactical considerations?

3.) A brand new building would be sprinklered. This is an old existing building in a suburban community and it is not sprinklered. What does the lack of sprinklers mean in a building that could have steel bar joist roof construction?

4.) Have you ever considered, practiced or used foam hand lines on an interior attack?

5.) What does the high BTU fire load mean to your departments operation? Lots of water flow, requires lots of personnel. Heavy hydrocarbon fire load means lots of SCBA work in large spaces among cluttered stock. Are you ready?

Take the quiz if you want!

Leave comments by using the send voicemail tab along the side of the website, or send an email to

Stay Safe, stay Thinking!

Pete Lamb
Copyright 2013

Know your Smoke Video – must watch

This is a link to a must see video for all firefighters. I saw the post in the Google + firefighters community.

Get the message out as the Providence fire department did after conducting their own study on cyanide many years ago.

Use cyanide and carbon monoxide meters on scene.


Show it to the troops and see if we get that “observable behavioral change” called learning.

Thanks, stay safe, and stay thinking!

Pete Lamb
Copyright 2013

Firefighter Training Podcast – Episode 2 – Fire Suppression Timeline

Well we made it we had a successful first episode and on to #2!

You can listen to this week’s episode HERE

This weeks show is about 30 minutes and it covers the following:

Some current events from the last week
FDNY Commissioner Son tweeting FDNY EMS
Miami Dade FD confrontation with Videographer
California Engine crash
Problems in DC
The Mesilla Fd in New mexico gives up stipends for new truck
Detroit FD stations getting robbed
Snake set on fire, revenge!
RI Legislator introduces a bill to make fire inspections every 10 years.

The training segment is the fire suppression timeline.

Just a tip on using the radio show, you can drag the bar along the timeline and listen to just the training portion or any segment you like. Take notes during the training segments and rewind and clarify anything you need.

We are now listed in ITUNES and you can find us and subscribe to us there if you have a device that plays podcasts and you won’t miss an episode.

We have lined up some guests for interview style format to break things up a bit and they should start with. Episode 4,

I appreciate all the feedback I have received and look forward to hearing from you.

You can reach me at or use the send voicemail tab along the right hand side of this page.

Thanks stay safe, and stay thinking!

Pete Lamb
Copyright 2013

Carbon Monoxide Response – Quick Tips

We are all handling more CO alarms than ever. In fact when many of us started in the fire service there was no such thing as a Carbon Monoxide alarm at all.

I have a concern that many of the alarms we are answering are false, and / or malfunctions. This can lead us to a false sense of security on our parts, so I felt a review of CO would be a good one.

Carbon monoxide is colorless, odorless, tasteless, toxic, and flammable gas, generated by incomplete combustion.

Carbon monoxide inhibits the ability of the blood to deliver oxygen throughout the body.

Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include headache, nausea, drowsiness, vomiting, cherry red skin color, coma, and death.

Monitors and detectors used by the fire service should be calibrated per manufacturer’s instructions but every six months would be an absolute minimum.

Meters and monitors should be tested on a weekly basis as a minimum and test should be documented.

Actions upon arrival should include but not be limited to:

Evaluate occupants for CO Poisoning.

Determine if any combustion devices have been in use.

If the unit (home detector) was purchased prior to 10 years ago then suggest a replacement.

Determine if a smoke detector is or was sounding as well.

Personnel shall wear full PPE and have SCBA at the ready for donning.

Document all the readings you receive in the structure, and near the various sources.

Check all of the following: Car in garage, chimney obstructions, furnace area, BBQ grill to close to residence and open windows, gas, wood, and coal fireplaces, kerosene heaters,gas ranges, stoves, ovens, gas refrigerator, portable heaters, gas dryer, gas hot water heater, non vented heater, and others.

Remember to treat these as serious calls, don’t become complacent. Create and use a form for documentation for you and the resident if necessary. If it isn’t written down, it didn’t happen!

This is not a complete SOP and it is not supposed to be, but just an overview and some thoughts. Give serious trout about creating someway to record readings so if the event happens again you have a baseline.

Stay safe, and stay thinking!

Pete Lamb
Copyright 2013

Tactical Fire Problem – Small Cottage

This week we are looking at a small residential structure.

1.) How advanced is this fire based upon the visual presented?

2.) Is the smoke coming from the roof vents a sign of a problem, or should that be expected behavior?

3.) Is the a basement under this structure? Slab only? Crawl space? What do each of these mean to your tactical considerations? Does it matter?

4.) List some difficulties in operating with a crew and hand lines in a smaller structure.

5.) Use caution when operating with a crew of personnel and a line when you are standing on a home built deck. Most of these are always ok, but putting 750-1000 pounds of personnel and a hose stream is a pretty significant live load. Make sure the deck is real!

Send any comments or your thoughts using the send voicemail tab on the right hand side of the page, or just email

Stay safe, and stay thinking!

Pete Lamb
Copyright 2013

New exciting stuff…..1st radio show! – Episode 1 – Rescue Profile and Search

I just launched a new radio show today about firefighter training. It may not be for everybody but I want to try and provide all forms of media.

This first episode is about 23 minutes long, but has a bunch of preliminary stuff explaining what is going on, before the actual training segment.

Take a listen and use the send voicemail tab on the right hand side of this page to send feedback.

After listening I already have some modifications to make but I am satisfied with my first attempt. Maybe the luck of the Irish will be with me.

You can listen to the showHERE.

Stay safe, and stay thinking!

Pete Lamb
Copyright 2013