We have been asked several times what we carry in our gear - AKA “what’s in your pockets?” I try to keep it simple. What are the most important items I will need if the next run is a working fire? The image above shows what I carry on the outside - wooden wedge on the left side. Right side flashlight, knife and elevator keys.
In the video, we used a S&D Rex Tool and locking pliers to complete a cylinder removal on a door equipped with panic hardware.
Need a quick way to keep webbing together? An easy hack I picked up is to keep webbing secure and dry using in a latex glove. It is easy to find in the pocket and never gets bunched up in a rats nest.
For this tool modification, I started with a 24’ Fire Hooks Unlimited (FHU) ProBar. I cut the pike off and added a Rex Tool in its place. This tool modification provides a firefighter with a decent size bar for forcible entry and pulling locks.
Use an old roof ladder to create a custom vent, enter, search (VES) ladder for your fire department. A lot of our legacy buildings in the Northeast have the sill 4-5 feet off the ground. This is a fast and easy way to get in and out quickly.
The firefighting hood is an important part of our personal protective equipment ensemble. Not only does the hood provide thermal protection, it protects us from harmful, hazardous particles and substances. Wearing your hood should be a habit - here’s how to make it one.
Garage doors play a significant role in firefighting operations. They may function as a primary entry/egress point for interior operations. They could serve as our secondary building access. Given the nature of their use, the garage itself is often the location of the fire or hazard we’re responding to. In any case, however, the garage door can also become a major hazard. Heat from fire can damage and melt the springs, causing the door to release without warning. Garage doors can be extremely heavy and this release can cause life threatening injuries or trap firefighters engaged in fire suppression operations.Be sure to secure the garage door if you need it open, even if the springs are completely intact. Here are a few ways to secure the door.
Familiarize yourself with the size of your apparatus hose bed and know how much hose you have stored. For example, if you need 100 feet of 2 1/2-inch hose line and know the bed is 10 feet deep, you know you need to pull ten lengths. You’ll grab five folds of fire hose and unload…
Whether it’s frowned upon at your department or not, at the end of the day, many of us are running with our scba masks pre-connected for a variety of reasons. Here is a quick easy trick I wish I had been shown 12 years ago.
Every call it seems there is a point when you end up with more gear than hands or need to accomplish a task that requires you to put your halligan down. But ditching your halligan, even briefly, could result in it being stolen on-scene by the second due crew! Here’s a solution for carrying a firefighter halligan.
Have you ever been to a firefighter trade show or exposition? If so, you know firefighters love tools and gadgets. We like to be prepared for every situation you can imagine, and then the ones that you’ve never thought of. Unfortunately, our gear pant pockets become the dumping ground for such tools.
It is very common for responding fire crews to get locked out of multi-unit dwellings. To hedge against this, we carry spring clamps on all of our EMS bags for use as simple door chocks.
Buy full size 9’’ cable cutters or wire cutters, whatever you can get your hands on. Hack the handles down to a length that just fits your gloved hand. Remove all factory grips and apply a length of looped webbing over the newly cut to length handles…
During an extrication, it’s likely you’ll need to break a window. A window punch at an accident scene can create a mess and be dangerous. If not secured, shards of glass can be spread all over your work area, including you and the victim. If you don’t have any sticky spray, duct tape can be a useful alternative.