By: FF Dave Rosenberg, Massachusetts
During a vehicle extrication, it’s likely firefighters will 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. You can quickly apply duct tape to a window before using a punch to break the glass. A duct-taped window will better contain the glass and can be more safely removed from the work area. Always wear eye protection.
Start on one side of the window and place strips of tape in a checkerboard-like manner across the window. A passenger window will generally take 3-5 strips vertically, and 3-5 strips horizontally on the window. You can also add two strips of intersecting tape to form an X on the window.
Disclaimer: You must always consider your own personal safety and fire department policies and procedures. Wear full PPE at all times.