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   Rapid Intervention and Fire Ground Survival

An intensive 8 hour hands-on session by firefighters for firefighters.  The scenarios and skills are based on actual incidents.  The emphasis throughout the class is on simplicity, speed and success.  Participants learn the basic tools, skills, mindset and teamwork needed to survive and recover downed comrades.  Armed with these basic abilities, firefighters can adapt them to overcome many fire ground obstacles and keep themselves and each other alive.

Topics covered:

Movement of Downed Firefighter Using Drags, Carries, Body Loops and Ropes
Includes movement of firefighters up stairs.  It's not as easy as you think, especially on steep and narrow stairs.

 
Ladder Carries Using Single Ladders
How to place ladders, loading and carrying a firefighter down with and without SCBA (works on civilians too).  Sizing up the window for the safest and fastest rescue.  How to use a rope and the SCBA to lower firefighters is also covered.

 
The "Nance" Drill
Learn recovery of firefighters through a hole in the floor using a rope.  Considerations for widening and reinforcing the hole, knots and placement, getting rescuers in and out and protection are all reviewed.

 
The infamous "Denver Drill"
Several methods are shown and emphasis is on techniques in this excellent team builder.

 
Rapid Intervention Ladder Placement
Ladders placed for lowering or emergency egress are different than those placed for climbing and access only.  Just like forcing exterior doors, a well-placed ladder creates opportunities for self-rescue.  Creating these options is an important part of the RIT's job.

 
Rapid Building Exiting
This important skill can be done using any number of methods.  Maintaining and regaining orientation, recognizing all structural characteristics in the room or building and rapid location of points of egress are just the start of your exit.

 
Headfirst Ladder Slide
When done properly this controversial lifesaving technique is safe, but done improperly can be as dangerous as any fire ground hazard.  Proper ladder and hand placement is covered as well as two techniques for quickly leaving a bad environment.  Good confidence builder.

 
Escaping a Window or Roof via a Personal Escape Rope or Webbing
A simple and fast skill that requires only the rope and sometimes a tool as an anchor.  No harnesses or descent devices needed.  The hang and drop is discussed also.

 
Forcible Exiting
Breaching doors, walls and floors.  Relief from an untenable situation may only be 6 inches away.  Emphasis on speed, simple hand tools, reducing your profile and understanding the building features to aid your exit.

 
Mask Confidence Course
This is a very important station, as the title indicates, for building confidence in your ability to move safely at zero visibility.  Depending on the structure, time and skill level of participants, any number of obstacles can be presented;  negotiating stairs with no treads, moving through and disentangling from wires, maintaining orientation to your exit, Mayday procedures, air management, mask trans-fill procedures, rescue air procedures, diminished clearances, rafter areas, identifying building features, etc.
 

The class uses standard fire company equipment.  The techniques are purposely designed to allow them to performed by any fire company.  A ladder, rope, hand tool and carabineer are the equipment needed.  More equipment can be added as available, but this is a default level class.  Throughout the class students are shown new uses and reasons for always having a tool.  A pike pole, axe and especially a halligan tool increase options for the person or team carrying it.

It is our belief that anybody operating on the fire ground should have these skills - including incident commanders or anyone responsible for supervising firefighter rescue.  This a physically demanding hands-on course Students are encouraged to be self-limiting.  All above grade drills are completed with a belay line.

This class is not intended to suggest policy or deployment protocols.  This class covers some of the options available to a lost firefighter facing high heat or low air and those who find an incapacitated firefighter and need to remove them immediately.

 

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