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It happens. But it's not often that it's caught on video.

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There are probably few out there who have not been in a similar situation, riding down the road dragging hose behind you. Often the whole bed has dumped on a roadway. In this case, the crew on Rescue 25 from Jessup Hose Company #2 in Lackawanna County, Pennsylvania seems to be lucky not having to pick up a lot of hose (as long as it stayed on the rest of the trip). But unlucky that someone happened to be shooting their response. Another example of what few used to know about now ends up on YouTube.

I only recall doing it once when I was driving and it had a lucky twist. Responding to a report of a first due apartment fire there was a hydrant just past the building so there was no need to lay out. When we pulled up and I got out of the pumper I saw supply line out behind us which, at first, puzzled me. It was only a couple hundred feet that had come off when I took a speed bump in the complex a little too fast. The great thing about it is it I could see the layout section dropped right at the hydrant just before us. Nice planning of placing the bumps by the plugs (maybe it was Prince George’s County code compensating for our speedy driving). Acting like nothing happened, I just got on the radio and told the second due engine where to pick it up.

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Comments - Add Yours

  • scba272

    Hey Dave, that brought back memories when riding the boards as a JR, we came to an intersection and I notice some smoke several blocks away, I saw a hand exit the cab and wraped the hyrant w/ 2 1/2 too
    find out later they were flaging a car too move and were instructed too stand-by, our chief was investigating a barbecue, moments later at the scene. I jumped off pulling the line and the engineer looks at me and says boy what the f##k are doing and falls out laughing. That was the last time I ever pulled a line with out verbal confirmation, had to rack 700 ft alone, while the others back in those days drank beer at friends homes

    • dave statter

      Well at first I thought something like that happened on that call where I was driving. But we only had four and no one was riding the back step as I recall.

      BTW SCBA 272 for some reason ten different copies of your comment came through. That was strange.

  • Sharppointy1

    OOOPS…I imagine that doesn’t do the hose a world of good, huh?

  • The52nd

    Yup. It happens. We used to keep our SCBAs on the hose bed when we has an open cab. More than once I one go flying off on a hard tight turn. You’d think we would have learned. Could have been worse though; a while back a trailing length of line swung up and killed a woman on the sidewalk, so it’s not really a joking matter. I think that was in Somerville, Mass?

  • Gil

    Never lost any hose when we could ride the back step.

    • Joe Paczkowski

      No, but you lost fire fighters. I think losing hose every once in a while is a small price for reducing morbidity and mortality.

      • Gil

        We are still killing about 100 a year, by not rideing the step has not reduced that number.

  • John W

    At least there not laying it down the road. Besides, it will be easier to pull off for the hydrant man that way!

  • Robert Kramer

    There is something to be said for hosebed covers.

  • ltfd seattle

    Secure your hoseloads! There is no excuse for not making any attempt to prevent accidental deployment form the apparatus.

  • Steve

    Two things from my experience. First rack your hose correctly and neatly. Second five inch is more likely to get caught by the wind if not loaded/secured correctly where as three inch isn’t. How many companys are laying five inch then killing themselve’s picking it up? Answer is alot. What’s your flow? Little house/commercial building? Common sense! 3″ = 600GPM more than enough for the everyday house off and racks must faster & easier. Just my opinion..

    • CHAOS

      Are you buying 750 gpm engines??
      Are you living in an area where you will never get anything bigger than your “everyday” job??
      If you’re “killing yourself” picking up 5″, advancing a 2 1/2″ handline and throwing 35′ ladders must leave bodies strewn around everywhere!
      Just another opinion.

      • Gil

        Some of the companies who have 5″ hose dont have the water to supply it most of the time.

        • CHAOS

          Remember, in many places, LDH was an innovation that worked its way from the boonies in towards civilization. In the boonies it was a good way to move that precious water supply longer distances with less energy and friction loss.

  • Vol. Firefighter

    Use a cover/web strapping over the hose bed compartment and the hose will stay on.

  • Jerome Smiff

    My girlfriend called me the other day and said there was over 1,000 feet of “big yellow hose” laid out on 66 Westbound in Manassas with several cars on the shoulder with puddles of oil under them. OOOOps!!! I think we have all “been there, done that”