On Wednesday, March 17, 2016 the Brewster Fire Department conducted a full-department training exercise to review the principles and practices of vertical ventilation. Vertical ventilation is a tactic that is utilized by fire departments to control the spread of fire and to evacuate smoke and other heated gases from a building. The maneuver allows trapped smoke and heat to escape through an opening that is cut into a roof by highly trained fire suppression personnel. By controlling the spread of fire and removing harmful byproducts of combustion, firefighters are able to increase the chances of survival of potentially entrapped victims and to decrease the amount of potential property loss. These ventilation techniques combined with a coordinated fire attack (application of water on the actual fire) are essential to safely and effectively extinguishing structure fires that occur within our community.
In the photos firefighters can be seen utilizing aerial and roof ladders to access a rooftop, using chain saws on a training tool to simulate cutting a hole in a roof, and utilizing self contained breathing apparatus to protect themselves from smoke, heat, and other harmful gasses. The evolutions demonstrate some of the diverse technical skills and abilities that members of the Brewster Fire Department must maintain to remain proficient and effective in completing their fireground assignments.