Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Big One

The tone has dropped and the report is not good, big building,old building and flames are showing through the roof. The first company arrives and confirms it is going to be a firefight and they go to work. The old engineer drags hose to the hydrant and get the advancing crew some good water as he looks at the scene thinking ahead to multiple lines and the need for more water. A Chief arrives and calls for more help and then meets the crew coming out of an active fire attack to say that it is well beyond them and it is big water time.

Now there are a bunch of firefighters arriving, hoses are being laid and up goes the ladder to get at the fires deepest core. More Chiefs arrive and the plan is getting an evaluation as firefighters start to relay what else is needed. After awhile the fire seems to be beat back by the toughest ones we have to put on it. A crew of six goes in to pull ceiling an see if we got and as they get close someone reports that the roof is moving and you realize that even with radio communications at an all time low they must get out now! I rush to the top of a staircase and beat on the floor until they come out. Now everyone is out and we pour the coal to the masterstreams out front until we see no more fire. Good communications even without the radios in a timely manner can be life savers, we all went home!

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