- Avoid coming up DRY, by initiating a hydrant "Pump-Out" plan
- Apparatus maintenance is crucial! Make sure that tire chains or other traction devices are available for all first-in units
- Develop a "contingency plan" with the authority or agency responsible for road maintenance and service
- Develop SOP's regarding "dry-pump" vs. "wet-pump" operations. Things to consider are response time, pump design and normal ambient temperature in the station.
- Carry a supply of salt, sand or oil-dry to enhance footing and reduce the possibility of falls.
- During heavy snowfalls, apparatus may be forced to operate "away" from the fire building.
- Extra lengths of attack line should be added to preconnects to compensate for the additional stretch.
- Following knockdown, when handlines are in standby, partially opened control valves will allow water to flow and prevent freezing.
- Make sure that all waterways for monitors or deck pipes are dry, to avoid any freezing or clogging effects resulting from ice or slush .
Follow the manufacturer's recommendations regarding the cold weather use of SCBA. Don't allow water to seep into regulators or emmission valves.
And finally, ensure that extra turnout gear is available, especially gloves. It's recommended that personnel wear layered clothing, rather than bulky articles.
Ours is a unique profession. As firefighters and EMT's, we're called upon to perform a number of important tasks, in a wide range of weather conditions. So whether we're working in desert heat - or arctic cold, our mission is always the same. . .to save the folks inside, and perhaps save their home.
By the way, wasn't the 4th of July picnic just a few weeks ago?
(2) US Weather Service
(3) Battalion Chief Edward Hojnicki