In response to the post by Fire Apparatus Tactics linked below concerning the Synakowski Farm Fire that occurred on April 3rd, 2019 Larry Reber of Firovac Power Systems would like to raise a few questions and start a discussion on the matter.
First one being, doesn’t this instance show us yet again how often we do not have enough water to extinguish the fire?
Second, what are we being taught, and can’t we see how much water is being wasted in improper applications? We must choose our water application wisely. Often times a deck gun is used which further forces fire horizontally thus compounding the problem. Water is most effective directed at the base of the fire, not the rooftops.
And last, how much time does it take to set up, especially where water delivery is concerned? Are we programmed to seek and drive to a hydrant? Do we drive past water sources we think are not useable OR are currently not useable with our present system? Maybe we should all ask ourselves if we should be fighting fires in non-hydrant areas the same way that we do in hydrant areas?
It is difficult to “take the heat out” of a fire of this strength but a certain amount is needed in order to protect the other exposures. The most efficient use of water would be to set up “water curtains” to protect these other exposures, which minimizes GPM flow and directs heat vertically. With this, I have seen a home successfully protected which was within 6’ of another structure fire.
These questions and discussion have been provided with the hope that others will do the same. Please do not be afraid to continue the discussion below.