Written by Cadet Soto
OCRFA, Battalion 50, Alpha Company, Squad 1, s3
Drill date 9/24/18
Battalion 50’s day started at 0630 with everyone arriving and staging our gear accordingly. We made a change today to our normal PT by adjusting the time to 30 minutes so that we can start a daily donning of our ppe (personal protective equipment) for time, we will be tested in November and the goal is to have everyone completely dressed and on air in under 2 minutes. After the morning workout and donning of ppe for time we began setting up the stations for the day which were Ladderland, Rehab stations, Bleve, Hose line extension/replacing burst line and SCBA/right handed search.
At 0900 Alpha Company started their day at the Bleve station which consisted of two sections, first Squad one was on the portable monitor. This drill takes 4 people to operate, the captain grabs the portable monitor and runs it 100’ away to the objective, firefighter 1 pulls 100’ of 4” hose out to the portable monitor and connects it, firefighter 2 pulls out a 50’ section of 2 ½” hose, disconnects it and takes it to the engineer where he hands off the male coupling and takes the female end to the gated wye to connect. The engineer connects the 2 ½” hose and runs around the engine to disconnect the 4” and reconnect it to the engine’s pump. The firefighter and captain then call for water and manipulate the portable monitor up, down, left and right. The other drill consisted of a captain and firefighter pulling and placing 150’ of hose to the base of a ladder, then the firefighter would advance the nozzle up the ladder, rest it on a rung and lock into the ladder by wrapping their leg through the rungs and around the beam. Then they tied the hose down to ladder and called for water and opened the bale to flow water 20’ in the air onto their objective.
At 1040 we moved on to extending hose and replacing a burst hose lines. Again, we split into two groups and ran drills simultaneously. A member from Squad 1 would grab the nozzle and loop of hose from bed 1, advance it 50’, run back to grab a hose clamp, shoulder load an additional 50’ of hose, set the hose clamp 5’ away from the nozzle, bleed the hose, disconnect the nozzle, extend the hose with that 50 foot section of hose, attach the nozzle to that before removing the clamp and advancing the remaining hose. A member from Squad 2 would grab the nozzle and loop from bed 3, run it out, but would then run back to grab a clamp and pull another 100 feet of hose to connect to their existing hose lay before advancing.
At 1200 we were dismissed for lunch and returned at 1300 to start station 3, SCBA and right-handed searches. We started this station by cutting pieces of dry wall to use for breakouts and then donning and doffing our ppe and SCBA multiple times. Four members of our company placed our SCBA on the engine and simulated arriving on scene to an incident and donning while walking towards our objective where we then went on air. Next, we split into teams of 2 where we crawled through a dark obstacle course while on air doing a right handed search of our conex-box. The course had multiple points where we had to breach walls (break through the drywall sections we just cut) and remove SCBAs to fit through holes. Multiple walls were breach, with pieces of broken dry wall around us. We climbed through walls and maneuvered up and around a set of stairs while communicating with each other in the dark.
Our final station was Ladderland, at 1440. Today was the first day we threw ladders while wearing SCBAs which will now be the new standard. We were split into a group of six that worked on throwing one person 24’ ladders in various windows, roof lines. Techniques such as a rescue throw, entry throw, roofline throws and horizontal ventilation throws were practiced. The remaining group of 4 practiced throwing 14’ ladders and 2 person 24’ ladders to full extension using both flat raises and beam raises.