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Salvage, Overhaul, and Fire Cause Determination

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1 Salvage, Overhaul, and Fire Cause Determination
Chapter 20 Salvage, Overhaul, and Fire Cause Determination

2 Introduction Salvage and overhaul operations are not viewed as critical tasks. During the fire attack, firefighters can watch for signs and conditions to assist fire investigator. The chapter explains reasons for and importance of salvage, overhaul, and fire cause determination.

3 Salvage Tools, Equipment, and Maintenance
Fire incidents have a potential loss of material goods. Scene “triage” Basic premise of salvage operations is to remove harmful atmosphere from material. Use proper tools. Some operations require complex equipment.

4 (A) Good and (B) bad salvage operations.

5 Salvage Covers Mainstay of salvage operations
Several different materials Plastics covers Canvas covers Knife or scissors to cut desired length

6 Firefighter carrying Visqueen roll.

7 Floor Runner Lightweight canvas-type material Protects the floor
Important not to damage floors unnecessarily Customer service makes the difference

8 Floor runner in place.

9 Water Vacuum Two basic types: Backpack cannot be worn with SCBAs.
On wheels Backpack cannot be worn with SCBAs. Used to drain catch-alls Limited capacity Another option is a pump.

10 Miscellaneous Salvage Tools
Some other tools Hammer Nails Staple guns Visqueen Doors and windows secured Salvage covers

11 Maintenance of Salvage Tools and Equipment
After use, tools must be cleaned and inspected. Tools often exposed to hazardous materials Reimbursement Do not allow debris to spill from salvage cover. Loose fold and roll

12 Loose fold and roll.

13 Salvage Cover Folds and Rolls
Covers Rolled Folded Available compartment space dictates method Two firefighters are needed to roll a cover. Fold cover neatly like a bed sheet.

14 Salvage Operations Safety considerations Sprinkling heads
Protecting material goods Arranging of furnishings Water removal Post indicator valve and outside screw (stem) and yoke valve

15 Salvage Operations (cont.)
Sprinkler stops Use sprinkler stops if no valves can be located. Importance of salvage operations Can be as important as any actions performed on emergency scene Make something good out of a bad situation. Preserve as much property as possible.

16 Overhaul Tools, Equipment, and Operations
Process of overhaul Tools used for overhaul built for following tasks: Tearing into building Cutting through floors Pulling ceilings Searching for hidden fires

17 Common Tools Common overhaul tools: Pike poles Pitchforks
Rubbish hooks Shovels Axes Chain saws Carry-alls Wheelbarrows

18 Carry-All 1.8 metre square (6-foot-square) piece of heavy canvas
Rope strung through grommets Used to carry debris out of building Used where wheelbarrows cannot be taken

19 Operations After fire investigation, overhaul investigations can begin. Hidden fire Thermal imaging cameras Wooden structural members Insulation

20 Overhauling Roofs Long process Multiple roofs
Pitched roof may be built over flat roof. Creates two attic spaces Overhaul nightmare

21 Electronic Heat Sensors
Relatively new way to check for hotspots Determine where heat is higher compared to surrounding areas Alerting mechanisms differ Some used to find people

22 (A) (B) (A) Helmet with thermal imaging camera attached. (B) Firefighter using a handheld thermal imaging camera.

23 Revisits of the Involved Structure
Important to revisit scene Wise to make additional checks Two hours after last company leaves and again within 10 hours Next shift Fire watch

24 Debris Removal Removing debris Loose material
Place material in a pile and lightly hose down. Cover debris with Visqueen.

25 The Importance of the Overhaul Operations
Customer service aspects: Hidden fires Limit amount of uncovered debris Leave building in a safe state Overhaul work is often the only thing owners get to see the result of. Make sure overhaul work is in concert with fire investigator.

26 Fire Cause Determination Concerns
Possible clues as to how the fire started Firefighters should listen to the reported information. During response, additional information may be gathered by questioning. Firefighters must ensure that investigator pre-approves removal of any part of structure.

27 Preservation of Evidence
Items that seem out of the ordinary Leave items where they are found. Protect and preserve area. Cordon off area. Compromised evidence and areas Legal actions

28 Basics of Point of Origin Determination
Scientific pursuit Scientific approach Path of least resistance Fire’s starting point Depth of char Damage can be influenced by many factors.

29 V pattern in a structure fire.

30 Depth of char.

31 Lessons Learned Salvage and overhaul duties are vital.
Salvage and overhaul have a direct impact on success of incident. These duties are a great customer service for the homeowner, even if they are never recognized.

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