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Saturday, March 22, 2014

BFR Confined Space Training

Over the past couple of weeks, all members of the Brentwood Fire & Rescue Department have taken part in a confined space training evolution. The idea behind this evolution was to train our members with the skills necessary to rescue a patient from a confined space. The scenario in this training was a victim who was confined approximately 15’ down in a 24 inch wide pipe covered by a manhole. BFR’s goal was to send a firefighter down the pipe, package the victim for removal, and then remove the victim from the pipe.
First things first, firefighters need tools. Rescue 1 supplied most of the tools necessary to rescue the victim. This included a tripod, hauling systems, tarps, harnesses, pike poles, ladders, ropes, and helmets.
BFR Lieutenants strategize on the best plan of action to remove the victim, whom they can see from where they are sitting.
A firefighter was lowered down inverted into the pipe in order to tie a rope around the victim in preparation for raising them out. This task needed to be done quickly because the firefighter can only work upside down for a short amount of time. In order to safely lower the firefighter, communication was paramount. It required a firefighter communicating with the rescuer in the hole, a firefighter communicating with the team at the haul system, and firefighters at the haul system responding and communicating as necessary with the firefighters at the hole.

Once the firefighter had the victim packaged properly, the above ground crew raised the firefighter out of the hole. Then it became a coordinated effort of the remaining members to safely raise the victim out of the hole.
While situations like this do not occur on a regular basis in Brentwood, BFR is dedicated to remaining prepared to answer any emergency that may arise. While this exact scenario may never present itself, the skills honed during this evolution can be applied in other ways.  This is another example of the dedication of the Brentwood Fire & Rescue Department to continue to train and prepare to serve our community effectively.