RIT: Under FireRapid Intervention Teams & Firefighter Self-Rescue
Overview• To provide the firefighter with the knowledge and skills necessary to perform rescues of firefighters that have become trapped or lost, and to utilize appropriate self-rescue procedures when confronted with life-threatening conditions.
Training Objectives• Identify Scene Conditions & Factors that Relate to FF Safety and Survival• Identify Skills Needed• Sizing up the Removal• Approaching a Downed Firefighter• Making a Successful Removal
Factors Causing FF Death & Injury• Improper Size-up• Poor Communications• Failure to Follow Safety Rules• Failure to ID possible problems early or as they develop• No Developed Tactic Plan on Hand
Common Fire Ground Errors• Failure to adequately • Failure to create size-up secondary egress (at• Undersized hose lines or above the fire area)• Call for additional • Unclear, unrelated help delayed and delayed communications
JAY JAHNKE - HOUSTON, TEXAS FD• LODD Story-Jahnke• LINE OF DUTY DEATH STORY• OCTOBER 13, 2001. Captain Jahnke and his company were dispatched to a structure fire in a 40 story residential apartment building. Captain Jahnke reported a working fire on the fifth floor and requested a second alarm. Upon the arrival to the fire floor, Jahnke and his firefighter were joined by the officer and firefighter of another ladder company. The four firefighters entered the occupancy and began to fight the fire. The two firefighters ran low on air and exited the occupancy. As they opened the stairway door, the fire conditions worsened dramatically. The captains decided to leave the occupancy by following the hoseline out but became separated in the hallway. Jahnke called for help and responding firefighters found him because of his activated PASS device. Firefighters had difficulty removing the SCBA from Jahnke and by the time he was moved to an area of refuge, he was out of air.• During the rescue attempt, two of the RIT companies had also become disoriented and had difficulty getting out of the structure.•
GARY STALEY – PORTER, TEXAS FD• LODD Story-Staley• LINE OF DUTY DEATH STORY• JANUARY 19, 2003. Porter firefighters responded to a fire in an auto repair shop. Upon their arrival, they found a single story commercial occupancy with heavy smoke showing from the rear of the 10,000 square foot structure. Staley’s crew advanced an 1 ¾” line through the rear door and just into the shop area when a flashover occurred.• The two firefighters who were able to find the hand line were on fire as they exited the structure and had to be doused with water. Staley was unable to find his way out and was found in an office less than ten feet from the door.
WILLIAM BRIDGES – MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE FD• LODD Story-Bridges• LINE OF DUTY DEATH STORY• APRIL 11, 1994. 27-year-old Firefighter, Private William Bridges, of the Memphis Fire Department, was killed while attempting to locate and assist his Lieutenant during a high-rise structure fire.• Arson was determined as the cause of a fire located on the 9th floor of a high-rise building that took the life of two firefighters (including Bridges) and two civilians. Bridges and his officer, Lieutenant Michael L. Mathis, took an elevator to the 9th floor (against fire fighting procedure) where the two were somehow separated. Bridges attempted Mathis on the radio several times, without reply from Mathis. Bridges then left his safe area and re-entered the fire floor hallway in an attempt to locate Mathis. Upon re-entry into the hallway of the 9th floor, Bridges became entangled in cable television wire that had fallen from the ceiling. The cable wires had originally been secured by a plastic encasement on the walls, near the ceiling. However, the heat of the fire had melted the encasements, allowing the cable to fall or hang downward into the hallway. After becoming entrapped in the cables, Bridges depleted his SCBA of air. Bridges had also been incapacitated by a heavy stream of water being discharged into the 9th floor window from another company. Bridges was found face down just nine feet from the safety of the west stairwell door. Bridges SCBA face piece was in place with cable wires wrapped around his SCBA, back and legs. Bridges did have a Personal Alert Safety System (PASS) device, however it had not been activated.• Bridges died of smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide poisoning.
Lessons Learned• Recognize conditions and their affects on operations• Ensure instructions are given and understood• Obtain continued information on fire and size-up as incident progresses• Remain in clear communications with crew and IC• Complete rescue and survival tactics quickly & safely• Retain control at all times• Stay alert, calm, think clearly, use common sense and act decisively
Window Rescue Steps after SCBA Removal• Rotate/Swing FF so Feet and legs are up against the window wall• Request additional help from command, one FF inside and one on the ladder• Coordinate lifting the FF through the window, feet first onto the shoulders of the ladder rescuer.• Hold on to FF at collar as ladder rescuer descends down the ladder